College life is great at first. Tons of new people, a bunch of school-sponsored events for entertainment, and not-too-shabby eats in the dining hall (for glorified cafeteria food, that is). Life is good once move-in is over.
Then a few weeks go by.
Not only is there class to deal with, but the dining hall food is all starting to taste alike, there are fewer campus events to go to, and while the people may still be interesting, everyone’s getting a little tired of the same old thing. So now what?
The weird thing is that most people think they just have to deal with it. They don’t realize there’s an entire area surrounding their school that’s rich with eateries, entertainment, and other things to break the dorm room fever that has set in. But it isn’t enough to know they’re out there somewhere. In order to take advantage of the off-campus fun, you have to find them. And trust me, it isn’t hard.
LOCATING OFF-CAMPUS VENUES
- You’re almost guaranteed to be online, be it on a laptop, a tablet, or a cell phone. So why not do a quick internet search? Plugging your school into Google will give you a variety of things near campus. Travel sites are a good way to locate something fun to do.
- Take a walk. Unless your school is literally in the middle of a corn field, there are bound to be shops, restaurants, and other venues that your feet can take you to. Even in the age of the Internet, there are still some small treasures that can only be found by physically searching for them, the old-fashioned way.
- Make some friends. Networking isn’t just for the job search. By making friends with upperclassmen or classmates who live in the communities around campus, you may be able to draw on their knowledge of the area to locate fun things to do outside of the dorms. It’s also a great strategy if you don’t have a car. Carpooling with friends to more distant locations is both fun and pragmatic.
Dorms and dining halls get old and sometimes oppressive to the creative and academic process. So why not try something new? The boundaries of campus aren’t invisible fences, forcing students to remain trapped on the grounds from September to May. Feel free to take a look around, explore, expand your horizons. Finding a spot with great take out is always a good thing.
If you’re worried about paying for your explorations on a college budget, stay tuned for some tips on financing your off-campus excursions. In the mean time, go explore!