Top 10 UD secrets for freshmen and transfers

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Although you’ve likely heard it many times before, welcome to UD. We’re happy to have you join us for another year. While you likely had an information overload about the resources available as well as plenty of advice during Crusader Days, you might be wondering how long it’ll take you to know the ins and outs of campus for yourself. While most of it is up to you to discover, here are a few insider secrets to get you started:

1.  We have a school newspaper. If you’re reading this, it obviously isn’t a secret to you anymore. Look at you, being an insider! Get the latest reviews of on-campus events, what there is to do in the DFW metroplex, student commentary on everything from politics to campus affairs, sports scores and schedules, and your weekly crossword and Sudoku puzzles all in one place.

2. If you’re in the freshman or transfer dorm halls, check your ceiling. While this may not be true for every dorm with pop-out ceiling tiles, check inside anyway. Your dorm’s previous tenants may have left you a gift. If not, why not leave one yourself?

3.  The periodicals. If you didn’t take a library tour during Crusader Days, consider this your new quiet study space, with a plethora of reference books and archived magazines for all those research papers you’ll have to write.

4.  The forest trail past the baseball field. Feel like an outdoors run but don’t want to deal with Northgate drivers? Consider the path to the Graduate School of Management Administration building, complete with distance markers. For safety, take your phone and a friend or mace. If you choose to go at night, beware of snakes and scorpions!

5.  Find Aslan but don’t touch him. Somewhere between the Art Village and Haggar is a lion statue which purportedly brings luck on your exams when you rub his nose or leave an offering. If you’re “brave” enough to touch him, Purell immediately. You’ve been warned.

6.  Unlike the Tower, the chapel is always open. While the Tower is only open for select weekends and events, the Chapel of the Incarnation is always available if you need a spot to think, pray, study or talk. Always bear in mind Mass schedules and any club events.

7.  There’s always a way to escape the Charity Week jail. It doesn’t matter who put the warrant out for your arrest. Whether you have to utilize your athleticism or Cap Bar allowance, there’s always a way out. It’s Charity Week, not “Shawshank Redemption.”

8.  Line up to get Dallas Year tickets before the SALC opens. Discount tickets to Medieval Times, Six Flags, musicals, and concerts sound great, right? Well, everyone else thinks so too. Get comfy outside the SALC’s doors at 7 a.m. to be sure you can get in on the fun. Certain events are given freshman priority, but why risk it?

9.  Use the buddy system for tickets and merchandise. Winter Cotillion and Spring Formal tickets are cheaper for couples, and it’s pretty common to split the cost with a friend or roommate. Also do this for Groundhog sweatshirts and other major event tanks and T-shirts. This can help you get them cheaper, in your size, or both.

10. None of us know what we’re doing. You’re not alone. All of us are feeling the weight of making life-changing, career-defining decisions. Drink some coffee, put on some music, and ask for help if you need it. You can handle it, my friends.

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