College should be a whole lot Hamppier

Andrew Hampp

I’m so sick of people always telling me that the most important things I’ll learn in college will be outside of the classroom. Well, I’m here to tell you … they’re completely right. I’m just sick of hearing it.

In August, I will accomplish something I didn’t even know was officially happening until last Friday. I will complete my college career after exactly four years. Those who know me don’t know how I managed to do so in this time frame, and, frankly, I don’t either.

Nevertheless, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my all-too-brief four years here, even though the whole experience has been pretty touch and go for me. So here’s a few things that you can do now to start improving your college experience. That way you won’t -ÿlike me – make it to your final semester and wonder, “What the hell just happened?”

1. Get involved your freshman year. Join hall council, do something with your major, play an intramural sport- just do something productive with your freshman year. I have a resume full of accomplishments and activities from my college years, but none of them come from my freshman year. Make yours count. Wait a minute. You’re already a freshman? Then nevermind …

2. Even if you can’t afford a car all four years of college, at least have a license. The first half of my college career was spent on other people’s time and gas money. I have spent the last two years making up for the countless rides and favors I’ve solicited from my car-owning friends and family over the years.

3. Once you have said car, go to Cleveland. See a show at the Grog Shop, catch a movie at the Cedar Lee, watch an Indians game. You’d be surprised by all you can do in America’s fattest, poorest city.

4. Set your sights on one seemingly unattainable goal and see if you achieve it. On a whim, I decided to apply for Homecoming King in the fall and ended up getting on court. Do something that will make the kids who picked on you in high school say, “What the hell?”

5. Make yourself look impressive on paper. I applied to 20-odd newspapers with a resume designed by Microsoft Word. I ended up getting a pretty good internship, but I have a secret theory that I got it because I interviewed in person.

6. When playing intramural sports, protect yourself. My broomball career lasted a total of four minutes – two to pretend to defend my team’s goal, one to chase after the puck and one to stumble off the ice after falling and breaking my wrist.

7. Drop names and exploit connections whenever you can. You never know when they’ll get you backstage at the Odeon to meet one of your musical idols (in my case, Rufus Wainwright).

8. Break the law for something really trivial – even a speeding ticket will do. It’ll give you street cred.

9. Cram everything you didn’t do in college into your senior year. Leave no room for regrets.

10. And whatever you do, try your best not to choke on a medium-flavored boneless wing from BW3s. I just did and it hurt. A lot.

Andrew Hampp is a senior magazine journalism major and campus editor for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].