College is the springtime of youth—a time to discover your identity and exercise your freedom. With over 31,000 undergraduates at the UA, there’s bound to be a large pool of different preferences. Each individual has their own unique story, and upon graduating, those stories will be shared with peers while laughing over some of your decisions made throughout the four-year period that is college.
It’s almost impossible to describe the ideal college experience without mentioning the exhilarating escapades that accompany the UA’s party culture. A multitude of people attended the university’s Residence Hall Association Block Party at the UA Mall on Aug. 20. A huge line laced the side of the Student Union Memorial Center as students waited to be registered for the night’s festivities. The highlight of the night was definitely the dance, where a large body of students congregated to enjoy themselves and dance the night away before classes started on Monday.
I had a blast, having met some amazing people while bidding farewell to what I thought was a summer unlike any other. Amid the festivities, I couldn’t help but observe that an equal number of people seemed like they didn’t want to attend the events. That was when I realized that the party culture that the UA seems to have a reputation for really isn’t for everybody.
I found myself stepping out from the crowd of people feeling a little overwhelmed by the boisterous event, which led me to think about some of the truly insane parties that happen around campus—a sign that I wouldn’t partake in one myself. And that’s just the thing—the party culture at the UA simply isn’t for everybody.
It seems that the “bear down” attitude applies to more than what one expects at the UA.
We all get the gist of these parties—our media paints fairly accurate pictures of them. From the dimly lit house and red solo cups to blaring music, society suggests that the ideal way to experience college is to get yourself wasted.
It’s completely normal not to want to attend parties. In some instances, it’s really so much more satisfying to attend a small social event, one that’s not quite up to the scale that the UA is known for, where you have the opportunity to make conversation and have meaningful interactions with people. The connections you create with people last a lot longer than the comparative hour or so of dancing that you’d do next to somebody. Plus, I find it a more pleasant environment compared to the evaporated sweat-filled atmosphere that you find in full-throttle parties.
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The UA hosts a diverse group of students, each with their own preferences. A good number of the students here are probably introverted and don’t feel comfortable partaking in those parties.
Some might even despise them due to their typically loud nature.
People who grow up as introverts have a very different idea of fun compared to their extroverted counterparts. While a night out drinking and dancing with a multitude of strangers is good fun, an introverted person would much rather slip in their jammies and binge watch their favorite TV show on Netflix.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that you do you, Wildcats. If partying the night away is what you live and breathe for, by all means, do it. But for those of you who feel like you’re missing out by not getting smashed on the weekends, don’t.
You do your own thing. You do you.
Follow Andrew Alamban on Twitter.