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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Column: College not the holy grail of maturity

Published: January 21, 2005
Section: Opinions

Before going to college, two wise prophets (otherwise known as my parents) gave me some valuable information. They told me that there are very weird people in the world, especially in college. After experiencing four traumatizing years of high school, I didnt think that college could be anything less than a miracle. However, after four months here, Ive realized that there are so many things that Ive learned that I wish I didnt know.

1. College students are more immature and ignorant than high school students.

Once a person graduates from high school, they assume that the university or college they attend will contain intellectual students. However, this is not always the case. When I was in high school, I was constantly surrounded by moronic social climbers who believed that Robert F. Kennedy was President 20 years ago (Im hoping that most Brandeis students know that this is untrue. If not, please take a history class).

After being here for months, Ive realized that college students are just as immature and ignorant as high school students, if not more. I sit in the cafeteria and see people spit napkins and food at each other during dinner. Dorm mates run after each other throwing pizza and garlic knots. Guys tell each other that what they do is so gay and tell one another to stop being a fag. Please, tell me, when does the immaturity end? When will people act their age and take on the responsibilities of being an adult. Once someone turns eighteen, it is time to grow up and embrace maturity.

One thing lacking from the Brandeis student population is the concept of consideration. Although it is not rampant, Ive found that the socially inept display this lack of thoughtfulness in abundance. When a friend of yours has a bad day, ask whats wrong. Dont feign ignorance.

Im sure most people have witnessed the deer-caught-in-headlights stare, in conjunction with minimal verbal response. This phenomenon, which makes you feel undeserving and horrible, was originally created on Long Island and has traversed the country.

2. College students cant take care of themselves.

When living at home, students have their mothers to take care of them. Although this is stereotypical of American families, it is true. Most mothers cater to the needs of their children. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but most students forget everything that they have been taught once they get to college.

Laundry is always a tricky process when it comes to college students. Mothers trained their students to do laundry the summer prior to attending college. Somehow, the brilliant Brandeis students forgot these important rules. Chemistry lab must have short circuited everyones brains, which led to overflowing washing machines and whites and darks being washed in the same load. Clothes turned pink and some were ruined. This led to an increase in consumer spending, especially at the Brandeis bookstores, because we all needed new clothes.

It is not very difficult to stay healthy at school. Eat well, go to sleep at a decent hour, and wear clothes that correspond to the weather. I have a warning for everyone who wears sandals after October: youre going to get sick. Youre also going to get sick if you drink like a fish and dont know how to handle your alcohol.

On the first day at Brandeis, everyone warns the first-years about drinking at parties. Dont drink the punch, they tell us. But does anyone listen? I dont understand why people find the need to go out every weekend and drink until they are unconscious (unless they want a free ride from BEMCo). Why would you purposely not want to remember what happened the night before? Dont get me wrong, Im not against underage drinking, but I find it ridiculous that people get smashed, plastered, or any other synonym of drunk, for fun. If you need a depressant to help you have a good time, then you really have other problems.

3. College students dont sleep in their own beds.

Enough said.

I never knew about these things before I came to college. Dont get me wrong;

Im highly enjoying my freshmen year. But I never realized that college students arent as mature as I had predicted them to be. The fall semester turned out differently than planned. One piece of advice for the midyears: college is a strange place. Anything is possible when you are forced to live with people your own age.

Okay, whos ready for rowdy game of hall hockey?