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August 20-26, 2009
• Back to Student Guide ’09 A-Z
Debunking college myths
The truth from a recent college grad
by Marissa Hermanson
Freshmen 15 – Both true
Every freshman dreads this. The infamous freshmen 15. I didn’t get the freshmen 15. I had the freshmen 20 (or maybe it was 25). Coming into college I didn’t think twice about the freshmen 15 because it was just a myth — a load of crap. Also, I never thought twice about what I ate. If I was hungry, I’d eat. Simple as that. When I got to college I was excited at the variety that the dining hall offered — pizza, Asian food, a sandwich stand, salad bar, fried food station, home cookin’ counter, etc. “Wow,” I thought. “No more Mom’s meatloaf or chicken casserole! Praise the Lord.” My overzealous attitude towards dining hall food led to my not being able to zip up my pants and feeling sluggish. I finally knew it was bad when my boyfriend asked if I was “bulking up for game day” as I shoved a forkful of mashed potatoes in my mouth.
This isn’t true for all people though. I had friends who were so nervous about school that they couldn’t eat their first month of college and ended up losing weight. Just remember, as long as you eat healthfully and exercise regularly you won’t be affected.
Walk of Shame – True
I had no idea what the walk of shame was until I got to college. Then one Saturday morning, as the sun was rising over my college town, I left my friend’s house after a night of beer pong. And then they emerged — dozens of students stumbling home zombie-like and glassy-eyed, sweating out booze from the night before. And when they walked, they kept their eyes averted, hoping no one would recognize them in their disorderly state. So yes, there is such thing as the walk of shame. It typically features girls with mascara running down their faces and broken heels, and guys with rips in their jeans and half-shaven heads. And occasionally you’ll see the person who lost shoes, shirt and all respectability.
If your roommate dies you get
a 4.0 – False
When I was 15, I saw the movie Dead Man on Campus. I was naïve and believed the storyline for the movie: if your roommate dies the university automatically gives you a 4.0. What a ridiculous idea! If something horrible did happen to your roommate (God forbid!) the university would have to take your emotional distress into consideration, but you definitely wouldn’t get an automatic 4.0. So when watching this movie realize that it’s complete b.s., and if you want a 4.0, you’re going to have to work for it.
You and your roommate will be BFFs – Probably not
It’s very rare that you and your roommate will be best friends forever. You don’t want to spend 24-7 with the person you live with because it’ll drive you nuts. The first week you may be inseparable because neither of you know anyone else, but that won’t last forever. As you each meet new people, you’ll start to stray.
My freshmen year, I roomed with a straightedge Midwestern Wiccan with whom I had nothing in common. We’d occasionally eat in the dining hall together or watch a movie in our room, but we never hung out outside of the dorm. Our relationship worked because we gave each other space. We didn’t spend too much time together, and when we occasionally did, it was fun.
Living with your best friend will ruin your friendship – Depends
Living with anyone presents a whole slew of challenges, and just because you already know everything about each other doesn’t mean you’re exempt from those struggles. That being said, I lived with my best friend during college, and I will always be grateful for the experience. Because we respected one another’s space and didn’t expect to spend every second together, being roommates not only didn’t ruin our friendship, it actually strengthened it. The key to making it work: respect (and doing your dishes in a timely manner).
It’s difficult to transfer – False
After my sophomore year of college, I decided to transfer to CU. The thought was exciting, but also paralyzing. How could I uproot myself after two years? How could I start over at a new school? How would I meet people? It’s a lot easier than you think. The process of applying to transfer and sending your transcripts is very straightforward. After your acceptance, it’s a matter of finding a place to live at your new school, signing up for classes and moving. The packing up and moving part is the most stressful, but if you take it in stride you’ll be OK. And making friends isn’t too difficult. You did it as a freshman, right? After you are settled at your new college, you’ll find it refreshing to start something new.
Eating disorders are common among college girls – True
Eating disorders are a common issue that college girls across the U.S. face. Throughout my college career, I encountered girls who had bulimia, anorexia or a workout disorder. Eighty percent of women are dissatisfied with how they look, according to the Eating Recovering Center here in Boulder. Also as many as 10 million women suffer from an eating disorder. Young college women are especially susceptible, as the ages of onset are typically 12 to 13 and 18 to 19. If you think you have an unhealthy mindset about food and your body, or if you are concerned about someone you know, CU’s Wardenburg Health Center is a helpful resource.
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