Summer vacation is the envy of all adults. We get to kick back, relax and basically live in a world where responsibilities are small and the margaritas are large for a solid three months. Between killer tans, awesome internships and phenom BBQs, it’s no surprise that we want our break to last forever. But, eventually, it comes time to pack our bags, soak up those final rays of sun and say goodbye to paradise. Yet the end of the summer is just the beginning of something even better: fall semester. This year, back to school definitely doesn’t have to be a drag. We’ve complied a list of 22 reasons why going back to campus will be just as epic (if not more!) as your summer vacay.
1. You get to use your brain again
It sounds totally lame, but we’re serious! After watching 12 straight hours of The Mindy Project on Hulu (or was that just us?), your mind could use a little responsibility. As much as we L-O-V-E laying out by the pool, playing endless rounds of Candy Crush and munching on whatever snack is within arm’s reach, being that lazy can only keep you sane for so long. Our brains need a little more action!
2. College sports
Who’s got spirit? We sure do! There’s nothing like cheering on your team from the stands with a million (ok, give or take a few) other fans decked out in your school’s colors. Even if your university doesn’t have a truly spectacular sports team, college sports are not only fun to watch on TV, but they’re also a great talking point with guys. And with every game comes…
A chance to bro out, day drink and dress in your school’s colors? Sign us up!
4. A break from your parents
Repeat after me: no curfew. Isn’t that just a pretty, pretty thing? Obviously we love our creators (sorry to gross you out there) and caretakers, but sometimes, a little break could do us all some good. Once we’re back at school, there’s no asking for permission to do anything, and tons of this funny little thing called independence. You’ll appreciate it.
5. Meaningful conversations
For some of us, home is a bubble. It’s your stereotypical suburb or melting pot of a city — but you tend to keep to yourself. But at school, you’re handed the opportunity to interact and learn from people from different backgrounds, countries, cultures and religions. College is the perfect time to pick at someone else’s brain, consider their ideas and discover what their completely different world has to offer.
6. Welcome Week
No homework. No due dates. Parties all around. It’s the perfect chance to show off your epic tan and truly let loose before the school year really starts to get serious.
7. New classes
For upperclassmen, this semester’s schedule means you finally get to stray away from intro lectures and dive into those incredibly interesting classes you’ve been eyeing since freshmen year. For underclassmen, these classes are a chance to take a bite out of everything until you find out what truly tastes the best on your palate. Not to mention, new classes generally means…
8. New professors
It’s out with the old and in with the new. This semester you won’t be dealing with that impossible intro to biology professor who made your life a living nightmare last year (fingers crossed, that is). Instead, you’ll be soaking up valuable lessons from new instructors, who have so much to offer that you better start taking notes now. And, speaking of which…
9. New school supplies
There’s nothing like back-to-school shopping. Fresh pens, unused notebooks, working highlighters — it’s the best way to start the school year.
10. Gym access
Buh-bye, summer gym fees. Hello, free membership. That’s right; your school won’t charge you to pretend to use the elliptical while you’re actually checking out that hot crew team member. And an added bonus (sometimes there is something better than shirtless rowers): discounted classes to try out. Universities don’t charge steep rates like some more posh gyms, so you’ll be able to test out Zumba, yoga, Pilates and cycling at a pretty solid rate, if not for free.
11. You’re basically walking distance from everything
At school, there’s no need to hop in your car, sit in never-ending traffic, and finally arrive at your favorite fro-yo place just before close… 20 minutes after leaving your house. On campus, you’re pretty much in la-la land where everything is reasonably close. If you can’t walk there, there’s always a shuttle to hop on that’ll get you there as quickly as possible.
12. No more long-distance relationships with your BFFs
Just like being within walking distance of all the best dessert shops, you’re also close to your college friends. You don’t have to call them to catch up, but instead, you can literally roll over on the couch and have them right there — or down the hall. Talk about convenience.
13. Dorm decorating
Who doesn’t love digging up their inner interior decorator? Whatever your style, you can decorate your room any way you want. Pick out a fun, daring comforter. Hang pictures of your funniest, craziest memories on the wall. Color-coordinate your closet. Organize your bookshelf by subject and importance. It’s all up to you.
14. Late night snacks
Eating alone in your room at 1 a.m. while your parents snore down the hall? Not exactly the most fun activity in the world. Stuffing your face with your friends and laughing in your dorm room after a night out? Well, that’s definitely something we can work with. At school, time doesn’t determine when we eat, and those ridiculous midnight pizza cravings are something to look back on in 20 years and laugh at: “Did we really eat three Dominos pizzas and cheesy bread?” Yes, and they were ah-mazing.
15. There’s always something going on
Home can be pretty monotonous. Wake up, work, come home, eat, sleep, and do it all again. But at school, no matter the time or place, there’s definitely something happening. Two o’clock on the quad? Free cupcakes. Ten a.m. guest lecture? It’s a world-renowned speaker. Four o’clock and running late to class? It’s because the streets are blocked for a parade. There’s always an event happening, a day to celebrate and a party to attend.
16. Joining new extracurriculars
Didn’t have time last year for the newspaper? Been practicing all summer to try out for the squash team? Think you’re finally ready to test out your skills in the student government? Whatever the case, a new school year is a new start. Get involved — there’s nothing to lose, and hey, maybe you’ll discover a new interest (plus, it totally boosts your resume!).
17. Catch up with your friends’ summer adventures
In middle school, the “How I Spent My Summer Vacation” essays weren’t exactly very thrilling. Some kids went to camp, some learned to swim, others watched TV — we’re bored just thinking about teachers having to read through them. Fast-forward to where we are now, and we’re having some kicka** summers. You’ve got friends interning at the UN, others taking pre-med courses in India and you’re interning at your dream magazine. There’s a lot to talk about — and flaunt — come fall semester.
18. Frat parties
College is the only time in life that it’s socially acceptable to go to frat parties, get wasted and reminisce about it the next day. Live it up and cherish those sticky floors and bottomless Solo cups of jungle juice.
19. New social scene
You know the (corny) song, “Make New Friends (But Keep the Old)”? It could have definitely been written about college. You’ve got a ton of kids on campus to become friends with, and there’s always an opportunity to expand your social scene and group of friends. With new classes, routines, schedules and activities, you’re bound to make a new bud to pass the time away with.
20. Fall rush
Fall rush is the perfect time to get out there, mingle with people (girl flirt) and find your new family. Greek life is always a great go-to when you’re looking to get involved in an activity on campus.
21. Up your competitive edge
Sitting around all summer and twiddling your thumbs won’t motivate to you push yourself very far. But plunk you down in a classroom where everyone wants the same thing and has the same dream, and you’ll be busting your butt to be the best, get better grades and score that internship you’re desperately reaching for. Nothing like feeling accomplished!
22. It could be your last
For seniors, this is you final hoorah. Embrace it, cherish it and definitely, definitely don’t take it for granted. College is seriously the best bubble world you’ll ever experience.