50 things we wish we knew as freshmen

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Isabelle Doerschlag/Staff

The time between arriving to UC Berkeley and graduating is short. During these four years, we will form friendships, face endless obstacles and grow more than we could ever imagine. While we would never trade these learning experiences for the world, having some basic tips coming into UC Berkeley would be more than helpful. To guide our fellow freshmen Golden Bears on their journey, here are a list of 50 things newly admitted students should know.

  1. It’s normal to be a virgin. Most of us were to0 busy in high school to have time for social interaction let alone sexual conquests.
  2. It’s chill to get a B.
  3. Crying happens. You will not be the first to shed a tear at Caffe Strada.
  4. You can not get the same results out of procrastination as you did in high school.
  5. Everyone around you is a genius. Don’t flatter yourself.
  6. Stating your gender pronoun is a thing.
  7. Being a vegan is common.
  8. There are other libraries besides Moffitt.
  9. Birkenstocks are both casual and formal wear.
  10. Not everyone at UC Berkeley is a Democrat — some people are communists!
  11. Not all of your professors will inspire you and blow your mind with their elevated understanding of society.
  12. You’re not the first person to cry about not getting the classes you need.
  13. Office hours are not spooky!
  14. It’s normal, and advised, to ask for help, even if you are doing well in a class.
  15. Our sports teams are underwhelming.
  16. Game Day is a lifestyle.
  17. The dining halls are not fine dining.
  18. It’s OK to feel overwhelmed and lonely at first — most people do.
  19. Berkeley goggles are real, but it’s OK — it’s what’s on the inside that counts.
  20. The freshman 15 is unlikely here given that the Berkeley hills are more effective than a stair master.
  21. It’s OK to not find the love of your life in college.
  22. Being perfect is overrated and boring.
  23. Everything is socially constructed — literally every entity you have ever imagined.
  24. Being woke is a priority.
  25. You will not make it through your first semester without being forced to table for something.
  26. Late night is a national treasure that should be revered.
  27. It can rain at any given time, and it will at the worst possible times.
  28. Midterms do not equate to one exam — they are a period of time that occupies two-thirds of the semester, ruining your life.
  29. First Fridays in Oakland are lit.
  30. Find a friend to rent an iClicker from. Don’t buy your own.
  31. If you like attention, sneeze really loudly in Doe Library.
  32. Do go to Cheeseboard for the pizza, but, please, dear god, go for the ice cream.
  33. You’ll never appreciate a good nap more than you will during your time at UC Berkeley.
  34. Don’t force your friendships. They will come naturally during the semester.
  35. Appreciate every time you go into San Francisco. You won’t be there as often as you think.
  36. Invest in some good walking shoes (you’ll thank us later).
  37. Make sure to not only study during dead week, but take care of yourself mentally.
  38. Try to avoid all-nighters at all costs. Bragging about your sleep deprivation isn’t as cool as you think.
  39. Caffeine is your best friend — coffee, tea and anything in between.
  40. Only wear heels to fraternities if your feet are your mortal enemies.
  41. Calling your parents doesn’t make you a loser.
  42. Not everyone is best friends with their roommate.
  43. People aren’t having as much fun as it may seem on their Snapchat stories or Instagrams.
  44. Bear Transit is your best friend for getting home at night.
  45. Avoid Greek Row during the first week of class unless you want to be trampled by mobs of girls.
  46. Don’t sacrifice sleep to cram for a test — you probably won’t learn anything, and it’s better to be rested.
  47. There are other places to go besides San Francisco — explore Oakland, Emeryville, Marin and other local places to really get a full picture of the Bay Area.
  48. Getting involved in campus clubs is the best way to make friends.
  49. Get excited to read “The Communist Manifesto” at least once.
  50. If you’re not on UC Berkeley Memes For Edgy Teens, you don’t even go to this school.

With these wise words, go forth into your college experience with confidence. Welcome to UC Berkeley, Golden Bears!

Sasha Ashall is the blog editor. Kirsty Fowler and Nichole Bloom are the assistant blog editors. Hannah Nguyen is a night editor. Contact Sasha Ashall at [email protected]. Contact Kirsty Fowler at [email protected]. Contact Nichole Bloom at [email protected]. Contact Hannah Nguyen at [email protected].