By Molly, University of Nebraska
Today in my wonderful little college town the high was like 85 degrees, which is a nice little change from the 101-degree heat we’ve been having. But, that also means that fall is just around the corner. With fall comes new classes but more importantly –- new freshman. Look, I still remember freshman year like it was yesterday, and I remember being terribly nervous. So as the anxious freshman wandered into my campus store today, my heart reached out for them.
It’s so overwhelming to live on your own and the first week of moving onto campus is INTENSE. For some students there’s fraternity and sorority recruitment -– which is another level of intimidating. But many students will be spending this week attending something they’ve only seen about in Animal House or in a completely inaccurate scene on ABC Family –- their first college party. As a self-proclaimed party girl (sorry, Mom!), I thought I would share my knowledge of parties and give some helpful tips to actually enjoying your first college party.
Click through the slideshow below for eight tips on surviving your first college party.
Are you nervous for your first college party -- or excited? Tell us in the comments below or tweet @HuffPostTeen!
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Utilize the "Buddy System"
For those of you who are unaware, the buddy system was ingrained into most of our heads somewhere between preschool and first grade to make sure we hadn't wandered off or found something shiny and gotten lost. Its use in college is not much different. Bring one friend that you're going to keep track of all night. When she's grinding up on that cute boy who looks vaguely like her ex, you will be wing-girling it up with his BFF. If you're grabbing a drink, she's right behind you filling her keg cup. You don't have to be each other's shadows but there truly is safety in numbers and it's easier to keep track of one friend than a whole mob of girls. You can keep each other in check and watch out for any completely traumatizing moments or just make sure you each get home safe by the end of the night. My recommendation? Go with your new roommate -- it will give you two a chance to bond.
You Don't Have To Drink
If you're not really into the whole drinking scene it's totally not a big deal. You are still welcome, and it's really only awkward if you make it awkward. Most house parties are going to have some sort of pop (or soda) to make mixed drinks with. Grab a solo cup and get a caffeine buzz going. People aren't going to bug you about not drinking if you have a cup in your hand.
Maybe Don't Do A Keg Stand
There's nothing wrong with letting loose your first "free" week of school, but there's also nothing more embarrassing than being "that girl" at a party. If you're trying to play keep up with people who have a higher alcohol tolerance than you just to be "cool" than you're only going to lose. I mean, lose the game, lose your dignity, and possibly lose your pants? None of those things are great.
Girls: Not Every Guy Is Nice, Not Every Guy Is A Creep
If you are genuinely creeped out by someone, don't be afraid to make it known to your buddy and keep a watchful eye on your drink. However, just because a boy is talking to you does not mean he is going to roofie you, and you don't need to be scared of everyone. Trust your gut.
Go All Out
Something I miss a lot about house parties? The costumes. Don't be scared to get a little creative! It's nice to find someone you can pick out costumes with but feel free to make it your own if you're the type that likes to stand out. People will always dress up for toga parties, Halloween parties, or any excuse to wear a goofy costume. You're not going to be "lame" if you join in on the fun.
Girls Are Not Mean
I've met more than one of my very best friends through a friend-of-a-friend at a party. I know that sometimes girls can be intimidating but with a little liquid courage it's very easy to make a bond that can last. I used to have a stripe of my hair dyed pink and I remember very distinctly talking to a blonde girl with a pink stripe in her hair at a Halloween party. We had a few mutual friends and had met once or twice before that. That girl? She's my roommate. If I had been too shy, I wouldn't have met one of my favorite people ever!
Heels Are Equal Parts Cute And Impractical
The weather here in Nebraska gets a little chilly come wintertime. Last year we were hit with an ice storm and tons of snow right around December. While walking from one "Ugly Sweater" party to the next, a friend began complaining about how her feet hurt from her super cute winter heels. I offered her a piggyback ride and ended up in the hospital with a dislocated shoulder. If you think you're going to be walking around a lot, maybe don't pull out the six-inch stilettos. Also, people are going to spill beer on you. If you're worried about your favorite shoes getting ruined, I would keep them in your closet for a different time. I'm not promising ruined shoes by any means, but just weigh the pros and cons of cute heels on a sticky basement floor.
Don't Run If The Party Gets Busted
Don't run from a situation because you're scared, like talking to the guy who's been eying you all night. Don't run from the cops, because they will give you a ticket if they catch you running. Now, I don't know how it works in other places but the more respect you show a police officer, the more likely he's going to treat you with respect as well. They are police officers in a college town, busting your party is not breaking news to them. It's like busy work. There are always unfortunate circumstances, of course, but seriously - don't run from the cops.