First-Year Park Blog

The weekly go-to resource for Park's newest students.

Posted by Marc Phillips at 10:11PM   |  Add a comment

I have not personally experienced a long distance relationship, but I have seen the drama, tears, and late night Skype sessions. As an outsider, I believe I hold an important perspective, so listen up, and stop texting your boyfriend.

Okay, so I may be a little biased on the subject, but I remember watching this poor girl who lived on my floor stay up for hours as she whispered sweet nothings into her webcam. The rest of us were bonding over MTV’s Jersey Shore in our residence hall’s lounge, eating take-out, and doing all those quintessential first-year college activities. However, this poor girl was too busy moping.  

I completely understand that people can really connect in high school and carry relationships into college. I have seen it done successfully in the past, and when two people are just right for each other, it’s beautiful.  

But here’s the thing—we can’t forget about ourselves. A long distance relationship takes an excessive amount of work on top of your 13 papers, extra curriculars, and leisure schedule.  

A relationship can be extremely rewarding and euphoric, but we are so lucky to be here. College is a privilege, and you are unwise if you do not sink your teeth into everything. Our main objectives are to learn, have fun, figure out who the heck we are, and try new things. It is such a gift, and it’s just a damn shame if you miss out on all of this to text your boyfriend or girlfriend 24/7.  

So be good to yourself. If your relationship is completely distracting you from the entire experience that is college, it may be time to call it quits.  However, in the rare case that you are able to carefully balance your significant other, Intro to Strategic Communications, and dance practice, that’s great too. Remember to invite me to your wedding!

Posted by Marc Phillips at 4:11PM   |  Add a comment

There is a misconception out there. A misunderstanding perhaps multiplied by movies like Animal House or TV shows like Greek. This misinterpretation is that college is just one big party.

It is purported that if you are not out and about on Friday, Saturday, or even Thursday nights then you are considered uncool. But there is a lot more to the college experience than becoming a champion at beer pong or performing a keg stand.

There is nothing wrong with just staying in. Having a relaxing night with good food and good friends can be equally as exciting.

Do not feel obligated to rip shots, if you want something more low-key. Why not stay in and watch a movie with your friends?

One of my best college memories is staying in and watching the absolutely worst movie ever made, The Room. This cult classic is chockfull of absurd quotes. To this day, our group of friends constantly recall this fun evening and confuse others with our inside jokes. 

If you don’t want to actually stay in your room and watch a movie, most weekends you can find movies playing in Textor sponsored by Ithaca SAB. Cinemapolis downtown and Regal Cinema at the Triphammer Mall are also excellent alternatives! 

If movies are not your thing and you are thinking about spending your small amount of hard-earned cash on a few drinks for one night, why not spend your money on a great meal at one of the many amazing restaurants in the Ithaca area?

Downtown in the Commons are some of the best restaurants I have ever been to. Viva Taqueria, The Ale House, Taste of Thai, Jade Garden, and The BoatYard Grill are Ithaca favorites. Again, another great memory from my college years is when a group of us all went to Viva for dinner. 

College is a great time to make memories with great friends. There is nothing wrong with making these memories with a quiet or chill night staying in and away from the party scene. People do not party as much as they make you want to believe. 

Don’t get me wrong, memories are created at parties too, but unlike the memories you may make watching movies or going out to eat, you probably won’t remember them.

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