Mixer: A party specifically held between one sorority and one frat.
One of the benefits of rushing a sorority is that they hold exclusive mixers with frats on a fairly regular basis. Unless your name is Blake Lively, you’re probably not getting in to a mixer unless you’re a member of that particular sorority. Mixers offer a smaller setting (rather than a frat party) to get to know the members of a specific frat, giving you a unique chance to see these guys beyond their clichéd partying and beer chugging antics.
Natty Light (Natural Light): The most common brand of beer at college parties; this specific brand name is also used interchangeably with beer in general.
Chances are, at some point in your college career you will encounter Natty Light (whether it's offered to you at a party or you're tripping over a stack of cans piled up in your hallway). While some might tell you that Natty Light is the beer of choice because of its superior quality, it’s actually because it's synonymous with being cheap.
Office Hours: Weekly time slots when your professor is available to answer questions, clear up points of confusion, etc.
Office hours are 80 million times more helpful than you would ever believe. Remember how in high school you spent your entire free period trying to track down your AP Lit teacher as if you were Nancy Drew just to ask him or her one question? The beauty of office hours is that professors have to make themselves available to you, and they use office hours to do so. This means that when your calculus professor rushes through antiderivatives, you can use office hours to go over what confused you.
Office hours also serve as one of the best ways to show a professor that you care and are putting effort into the class. If you take time out of your day to clear up a point of confusion rather than stay confused, even in a lecture of 600 people, your professor will know you care.
Pregame: Drinking before going to a party.
If you’re invited to attend a pregame, basically it’s a party before a party. While pregaming usually involves both alcohol and parties, you might hear the term being used for other event combinations. For instance, you may want to consider pregaming with massive amounts of hot cocoa before braving the snowy, December football games.
Quad: Any grassy knoll on campus that acts as a usual meeting spot or hangout.
Although they all go by different names, every school seems to have some area where students gather on gorgeous days to soak up the sun and relax with their BFFs. Whether you call it Old Main Lawn, The Green, The Quad, The Yard, etc., find out where this spot is and spend some time there! It’s usually a great place to get your reading for class done ... and watch guys play wiffle ball ... shirtless.
RA: An acronym for Resident Advisor/Resident Assistant.
RAs are trained peer leaders who are employed by the school to keep an eye on the students on their floors and in their halls. I can almost guarantee that during your first few weeks as a freshman, your RA will put together at least one or two “getting to know you” type events (so you should start thinking of words that rhyme with your name now). Unfortunately, having an awesome RA is really the luck of the draw. I know some RAs that really love their job and make getting to know their floors a priority. But there are also some RAs that are just in it for the free room and board and will only make it a point of tracking you down when you're blasting Backstreet Boys while they’re trying to study for finals (sad but true).
Rager: A common synonym for “party.”
The best part about the word “rage” is that it can be used as basically any part of speech you want and multiple times in the same sentence. For instance, a bro might say to you, “Dude, that rager at our frat was absolutely raging ... I can't wait to rage again next weekend.”
Reading Day: A day that the university or college sets aside before final exams for the purpose of last-minute studying.
Personally, I’d never heard of “reading day” until I talked to my friends at other schools. But I am all for the concept of expanding it to every college! Reading day is a great way for students to finally buckle down and get in some last-minute studying. As for students who have been actively studying, it’s the perfect opportunity to take a breather and watch reruns of “Boy Meets World” for the day ... or study more.
Recitation: A weekly meeting for a larger lecture class when you meet with about 30 other students and a TA to discuss class concepts from the lectures, etc.
You might be asking yourself, “Why is recitation on this list? It’s actually a real college word that you could find a definition for in the dictionary.” Here's why it’s in this dictionary: many college students confuse “recitation” with “I don't have to go to class that day,” which is WRONG ... very, very wrong. Recitations are just as important as (if not more important than) your normal lecture class. Discussing concepts in a smaller group setting is immensely helpful, especially for math and science classes. Your TAs will also be grading most, if not all, of your assignments, so it is good to get to know them! GO TO RECITATION. End of story.
Residential Computing: Computer EMTs; the people who will fix your computer when (inevitably) something bad happens to it the night before your term paper is due.
Depending on your school, the residential computing center may have a cute name (at my school, it’s called ResCom), and trust me when I say that you will want to know where this is. I don’t care how good you are at computers or how often you run virus scans. Something will eventually go wrong, and the residential computing people will save your computer’s life (one time, my roommate even brought them her paper-jammed printer, and they fixed it for her!).
Rush (Rush Week): A week occurring once every semester when those going Greek are required to participate in all sorts of crazy activities in order to be inducted into a certain frat or sorority.
If you see girls in crazy outfits, guys who look perpetually hungover and virtually everyone involved in Greek life looking sleep deprived, you can bet your meal plan that it’s Rush Week.
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