Posted On April 15, 2014 By In Advice For Men, Advice For Women, Girlzone

50 Life Lessons Learned In College


This is it. In six to ten weeks the Class of 2014 will be off to bigger, brighter (and slightly scarier) things. College may not last forever but those lessons learned (both in the classroom and out running rampant through the streets of your college town) will.

Before you (attempt to) become a functioning member of society, take a look back on the last eight semesters and take in what you really took out of college (besides that degree). Write them down and keep a list like this one, written by a Class of 2013 post-grad who swears she’ll stop clinging to college (and start paying her bills on time) someday soon.

  1. “Call Me Maybe” does get old.
  2. Study abroad is good for the soul.
  3. Karaoke’s not for everyone. Neither is hot yoga.
  4. You don’t need to try every flavor of Four Loko to know that each one of them will make you vomit, just like you don’t need a degree to know that if you drink more than two, you’re just asking for it.
  5. Make sure you know the laws of your town and the rules of the road or you may end up hailing a cop car instead of a cab.
  6. Always bring your own bottle.
  7. Do not assume you’re on the right train.
  8. Do not assume your friends are on that train.
  9. Do not assume you’ll wake up at your stop.
  10. School security can and will call an ambulance for your white-girl-wasted roommate who just flashed the desk attendant her meal card instead of her ID.
  11. The freshman 15 is real and so is the struggle to afford new jeans. Your school has a gym. Use it for more than the Spring Break stretch. You’ll look good and feel good.
  12. Don’t schedule your yearbook photos the Monday after homecoming.
  13. Fifteen seconds is more than enough time on the bull.
  14. The house full of boys dressed in habits will win Halloween. Every year.
  15. Proof-read your resume then proof-read it again. Proof-read it 30 more times and bring it to the campus career center.
  16. Dayglow is hard on the eyes and skin.
  17. They can (and will) kick you out of New York City nightclubs for crying. Get it together.
  18. Check the weather before leaving your apartment in your oldest pair of moccasins.
  19. LinkedIn is a gift from the career gods. Take advantage.
  20. Keep in touch with your favorite professors and remember to give them an e-mail address that won’t expire six months after graduation. Write them every once in a while.
  21. It’s okay to feel at home in more than one place. Just make sure you call the first one often.
  22. Pizza tastes ten times better than skinny feels.
  23. Check that you have your ID before catching the last Metro North train into the City. That goes for your friends, too.
  24. Take more pictures. Use fewer filters.
  25. Remember to balance (both literally and figuratively). Keep both feet on the ground/in reasonable shoes and be sure to make time for all girlfriends, boyfriends, papers and pregames.
  26. People will surprise you. Let them.
  27. Separate your colors (and don’t forget detergent).
  28. Not all best friends come with a lifetime guarantee.
  29. Some do. You’ll know which ones.
  30. Join a club and give it your all. Hell, start your own. Leave a legacy.
  31. Don’t drink gin, it makes you angry. (Just me?)
  32. The most important person to be honest with is yourself.
  33. Your favorite hometown bar will be full of high-schoolers when you return.
  34. Course registration is actually the Hunger Games.
  35. Boxed wine is never the answer. Boxed wine is also always the answer. Act accordingly.
  36. Mixing vodka with that boxed wine is comparable to Russian roulette.
  37. Keep your friends close and your enemies as friends on Facebook.
  38. You will run into your most recent ex more times in one week than you ever did the entire time you were together.
  39. It will fucking suck, but only for a little while.
  40. The ones that make it all four years are the ones worth keeping (and starting a ten-person group chat with).
  41. Cumulative is not the scariest C-word. Try Credit and Career.
  42. Being over-qualified is actually a thing.
  43. When it doubt, go Fireball.
  44. Always give an honest opinion.
  45. Express yourself, both literally and figuratively. Just don’t break your neck.
  46. Don’t play on the see-saw. You will break both your feet. Sober.
  47. Everything happens for a reason, but that reason may take years to show itself.
  48. Stand up for yourself, no matter how much it hurts.
  49. Live your life. Let loose. Be impulsive (but sit on all tattoo ideas for at least a year. Maybe two.). You’re meant to make the most of the next hundred years, not just these past four.
  50. Do what you love, love what you do and do it with the ones that you love.

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Meaghan McGoldrick is writer for Writtalin. She's a 20-something post-grad, born, raised and based out of Brooklyn, just trying not to get evicted. When she's not writing about middle school talent shows or drug busts for her full-time gig at a local newspaper, she's writing about wine, beer and what happens when you mix them. She enjoys long walks on the beach, Netflix and cronuts. Lover of words. Guacamole enthusiast.