Advice to Freshmen: How to Survive Second Semester

After four easy months of studying and partying, you mistook Sarah Lawrence for paradise. You came back a month ago excited to see your new friends, whom you feel like you’ve known forever. But they’ve changed. The cold has revealed who people really are—and suddenly Sarah Lawrence is no longer pretty.

Well no shit it’s not pretty! We’re in a bubble, but it’s still real life.

But it’s college, and college is supposed to be intellectual and romantic and filled with sex. (College is supposed to be intellectual and romantic and filled with sex, as high school was supposed to be the greatest time of your life. Which it wasn’t. At least, I hope it wasn’t.)

Sarah Lawrence has a lot to hate that other colleges don’t. We have the politically correct liberal activists who will lecture you about diversity and shout “PRIVILEGED SCUM!” at you, even though they’re from a town as white as the Hamptons. We have the girls who play ukuleles in the Hill House elevator.

So now every freshman is pointing out Sarah Lawrence’s tragic problems, as if they’re the Twitter handle @firstwordproblems, and talking about transferring. Negativity is so loud that even if you love the Blue Room and/or enjoy having sex in library study rooms during conference week, you will wonder if the bubble is right for you.

And unless you want to join a sorority, and are pretty enough/have enough social skills for Greek life to accept you, you should ignore this nonsense. I know, I know: Bard is soooooooo much better. Their president, like, IDK, wears a bow tie. So worth transferring!

Except it’s not. All liberal arts schools have obnoxious hippies, weird sex scenes, and ukuleles. If you visit Bard or Hampshire for the weekend, you will notice that we are on the lower end of the socially challenged/weird spectrum. Compared to Hampshire students, we’re fucking fraternity presidents.

We also have something other liberal arts school lack: the city. Yes, Lang is in the city, but they don’t have a campus. At Sarah Lawrence, you can revel in the ridiculous liberal arts lifestyle (you know you secretly love arguing about gender politics in the pub) and also escape to the most diverse city on Earth.

Unless you’re a frat bro who attended SLC because your mom graduated from here, ignore the transfer fever. Just focus on your schoolwork and listen to what you want. Sarah Lawrence offers an individualized education; it’s your college experience, not the drunk party girl in Garrison’s. Anyways, once the sun rises and the flowers bloom, everyone will remember that they belong here.


Originally from Hollywood, Not California--a city in South Florida better known as "that town where Anna Nicole Smith died"--Mitchell moved to New York to study writing and gender studies. He has written for Thought Catalog and worked as a writer's assistant to novelist Cara Hoffman. Next spring he will intern at the publicity department at Simon & Schuster. He blogs at Be like a stripper in Miami and follow him on Twitter (@mitchsunderland).

1 Comment

  • Reply February 22, 2012


    Mitchell you give the most worthless advice.

Leave a Reply