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This freshman year bucket list is a compilation of 32 things you should do before the end of your first year of college.
Starting college can be both exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. Freshman year is a time to meet new people and make memories that you’ll have for the rest of your life.
Embrace new experiences and take advantage of all the opportunities offered by your school and community.
Making a freshman year bucket list is a great way to encourage yourself to try new things in college. It also is a way to keep track of your goals, and ensure you accomplish everything you set out to do.
Now here are 32 things every college student can include on their freshman year bucket list.
1. Go to a sporting event.
Cheering on your school’s team at any sporting event is a fun activity to do with your friends. If you go to a D1 school, football and basketball games are usually pretty exciting, especially the tailgating aspect. Colleges offer students free admission to most sporting events, so it doesn’t hurt to stop by and show your school spirit!
2. Have a girls night.
Do face masks, paint your nails, watch the bachelor, make cookies—you know, the works. Have some bonding time with your besties and try to alleviate some of that stress.
3. Get an A on an exam.
College exams require a lot of studying, so getting your first A is very rewarding. For help, check out my post How to Get Good Grades in College.
4. Host a party.
You don’t have to throw a rager, but having some of your closest girlfriends over for pregame can be really fun. You can buy party decorations, make some cute fruity drinks, play all your favorite 2000s hits!
5. Pull an all-nighter.
Pulling an all-nighter is not something you should do all the time. However, there are times when it is a necessity. Try not to procrastinate studying to the point of having to stay up all night, but it happens to every college student at least once.
6. Organize a secret santa.
A secret santa is a fun activity for the holidays. Get a group of 5-10 friends, set a spending limit, and pick names to see who you buy a gift for. Gift exchanges are great for college because it’s much more affordable than buying a gift for each friend.
7. Order insomnia cookies.
Studying + warm cookies = happiness.
8. Plan a spring break trip.
If you go to school in a cold climate, you’ll be counting down the days until spring break. A traditional beach trip to Florida, Mexico, the Bahamas, etc. is always a good option, although you can also consider going skiing or visiting a big city.
9. Get food after 2 AM.
Late night food is never healthy but always delicious. Check to see what restaurants near your school stay open into the early morning hours on the weekends.
10. Go on a first date.
It’s important to be open to meeting new people in college. Also, don’t be too quick to judge someone who picks your first date location to be… the dining hall.
11. Dress up for Halloween.
The only time it’s acceptable to wear a Halloween costume after age 11 is in college. People will go all out dressing up for Halloween, so you should start thinking about your costume ideas far in advance. College students celebrate Halloween all weekend long, so be ready with at least three good costume options.
12. Do karaoke.
There’s usually at least one bar or restaurant around that offers karaoke. Don’t be afraid to embarrass yourself a little with your friends!
13. Go to the career fair.
Stopping by the career fair as a freshman can help you understand the process for future years. There probably won’t be many internships available for first years, but you never know.
14. Take an Uber.
Many colleges don’t let students have cars during their first year. Luckily, it’s super easy to call an Uber to get anywhere you’d want to go. Uber is more popular than Lyft, but it doesn’t hurt to compare the prices, especially for a longer trip. Don’t forget to leave your driver a tip!
15. Binge a season of TV.
Find a TV show you love and watch an entire season in one day. Some TV shows I’ve watched (or rewatched) since being in college are Gossip Girl, How I Met Your Mother, Top Chef, and Greek.
16. Drink 3 coffees in a day.
Only attempt this at your own risk. Sometimes you’ll find yourself so sleep deprived in college that you have to make two or even three Starbucks runs just to make it through the day. Caffeine will give you a good boost of energy, but don’t get into a habit of having it late at night.
17. Make amazing friends.
Everyone will be looking to make new friends at the beginning of college, so don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.
18. Sleep through a class.
Although this is not recommended, everyone ends up sleeping through a class at some point in college.
19. Go to a themed party.
Themed parties are super common in college, so be sure to bring any accessories you have lying around at home.
20. Do a workout class.
Most workout classes at college gyms are either free or extremely inexpensive (like $5 a class) for its students. From yoga to HIIT to cycling, check to see what classes your school’s gym has to offer.
21. Establish a tradition.
Think of something fun for you and your friends to do as an annual, semiannual, or monthly tradition. This could be as simple as getting dressed up to go out to dinner, or as elaborate as flying to New York for the weekend.
22. Take cute pictures.
It’s important to document your college adventures through pictures and videos, so you can easily look back at the memories in the future. If you have a polaroid camera, you might want to bring it to school with you.
23. Go to a formal.
It’s always fun to get dressed up for the night. You definitely don’t have to have a date to go to a formal in college, just get a group of friends together. Going to a dance with your girlfriends can be even more enjoyable anyways, since you don’t have to worry about your date all night.
24. Eat at the dining hall.
This is probably the only time in your life you’ll have an all-you-can-eat buffet at your fingertips, so take advantage of it. Pros of the dining hall are not having to do the dishes, tons of food options, and convenience. Cons of the dining hall are the food quality and meal repetition.
25. Talk to a professor.
Professors can seem scary, but they usually want to help their students as much as possible. Don’t be afraid to go up to your professor after class and introduce yourself.
26. Purchase school merch.
You can’t really be a student a school without the bookstore merch to prove it. College students tend to wear a lot of comfy clothes, so I recommend adding a few sweatshirts to your wardrobe.
27. Go to a darty.
Darties (short for day-parties) are a bizarre concept that only college students understand. Basically, a darty is an outdoor party that takes place in the middle of the day, which sounds awful but can be really fun if done right.
28. Write a 5-page paper.
Chances are, you’re going to have to write a 5-page paper for at least one of your classes. Humanities majors will say it’s a breeze, but five pages can seem like a lot when you have no idea what you’re doing. It’s definitely an accomplishment to finish your first big paper in college.
29. Take a day trip.
Depending on where your school is, there are so many options for day trips with friends. You could go to the beach, go apple picking, have a day in the city, go hiking, and so much more. Look at a map to see what kinds of activities are available within an hour or two from your school.
30. Do something crazy.
It’s up to you how far you have to go to make it count. This doesn’t have to be something actually crazy, just outside of your normal comfort zone.
31. Find a study spot.
Explore all the buildings on campus to find your perfect study spot. This is where you’ll be spending a lot of time during the week, so it’s important to find somewhere that you can truly be productive.
32. Join a club
Go to the club fair at the beginning of the year and try to sign up for at least one club. Clubs host a lot of fun activities for its members, which are a great way to make new friends that share your same interests.