College parties. When you hear those words, you probably think of a huge party thrown by a fraternity house with hundreds of kids and lots of alcohol. You envision squeezing your way through crowds of people while music blares in the background. But the college party stereotype that you often see in movies like “Old School” and “American Pie,” isn’t necessarily all there is to do on a Friday or Saturday night.
Photo by mcclave
College campuses are labeled as being either a “wet” campus or a “dry” campus. The term “wet” means that students who are 21 and over are allowed to drink on campus, the term “dry” means that there is no drinking on campus at all. During my freshman year at The University of Rhode Island, I was often asked what I did on the weekends and how the party scene was. My answer was simple: College is what you make of it.
So what are the parties really like? Well anytime you get a group of college students together, you can bet there will be a lot of noise and plenty of things to do. Parties can range from small get-togethers with movies and popcorn to house parties with lots of students. The stereotype that is typically portrayed in movies will almost never be what you actually experience. Because of security on campus, a party will be broken up before it becomes a dangerous situation for the students inside. If partying is your thing– you can be assured that some one will be looking to have a good time also.
What’s there to do if you don’t party? Some people think that a typical college weekend = party, party, party but there are plenty of other activities to do! A lot of colleges have an entertainment committee that will bring in special guests, musicians, comedians, etc. At URI, we recently had Bill Cosby, Will Ferrell, Jay Leno, and Schwayze visit our school! In the past, I’ve seen Third Eye Blind, Kanye West, Gnarls Barkley, and Jack’s Mannequin. Grab a bunch of your friends and attend one of the events your college hosts! Most of the time it’s free or students can purchase tickets at a discounted price.
In the dorms, resident assistants hold events such as pumpkin painting, special dinners, dances, movies nights and tons of other fun things to do on the weekends. They hold these events to help students socialize and make new friends. It’s a great way to meet new people.
Do you have to party? No, of course not! Getting involved in a campus organization will help you find other opportunities to have fun on the weekends. At any campus, you can find a group that is involved in community service. Helping out the community is a great way to network with people and spend your weekends being productive! Besides, you gain a positive experience when you help others! Local service agencies are always more than happy to welcome a new volunteer into their family. I currently work for the Rhode Island Center Assisting those in Need and I love serving at their food pantry every Wednesday.
So like I said, college is what you make of it. Take advantage of what your school has to offer and you will surely be busy all weekend! Don’t forget that homework has to fit in there somewhere, too!