Adjusting to life at UVa can be difficult for out-of-state students. The Virginia lifestyle is of a specific taste, so don’t be caught not playing the part. Here are ten helpful tips for assimilation into the culture of a Wahoo.
10.) Southern Pride: It doesn’t come naturally for everyone; out-of-state students simply don’t understand UVa’s attachment to red, white, and blue. It doesn’t matter that Virginia is one of the most northern of the “southern states.” Every day is the Fourth of July and patriotic dress is acceptable any day of the week.
9.) Bean Boots. Riding Boots. Rain Boots. Going-out Boots: There is a boot for every occasion. You’re obviously not from Virginia if you think otherwise. Ask any local girl, during any season, and I’m sure they would know just the right pair to go with your outfit. They’d probably even have an extra pair for you to borrow. Size 8.
8.) One Big Track Team: Grounds is home to the next Team USA runners. If you walk all the time or take the bus everywhere, are you even really a student? If you’re not an all-star athlete like the Virginia natives, just dress the part. Wear your running shorts, oversized Greek T-shirt, and tennis shoes to class, and you’ll have everyone fooled.
7.) Virginia’s Balanced Diet: You’ve spent all of these years focusing on your academics when, in reality, parties are the key to success at UVa. There is an excuse to go out every day of the week; mimosas for brunch and draft beers for dinner. Oh yes, brunch; you’re giving your out-of-state identity away if you eat these meals separately.
6.) Local Restaurants Over Everything: Virginian’s, and UVa students especially, hold their local restaurants dear to their heart. Don’t ever choose to go to Ruby Tuesday or Chili’s when you could have The Virginian (talk about getting culturally adjusted) or even Bodo’s Bagels. No meal is as satisfying as the ones within walking distance.
5.) One Big Rush: Everyone knows you have to be the only student from Wyoming, so you need new friends. Rush. Go Greek. You’ll make plenty of new brothers or sisters. Plus, you’ll get plenty of those T-shirts we were talking about earlier to compensate for paying to hang out with your new besties.
4.) Accents are a Dead Giveaway: You grew up as that cool kid with the really interesting, diverse accent. Use this to your advantage. Everyone loves a good accent, so you’ll get all the friends without even having to change this part of your life. You might still be recognized as a newbie to the state; however, you’ll have so many friends that it won’t even matter.
3.) Feelin’ Crafty: Your dorm or apartment should only have handmade decorum. Forget about buying fancy decorations or bringing that memento from your hometown. Here in Virginia, it’s all about DIY.
2.) Libraries Aren’t Just for Nerds: Despite popular belief, UVa students have all learned to love their libraries. You should too if you want people to believe you’re a true Wahoo. Studying may not have been the cool thing to do where you’re from, but it is here.
1.) Crosswalks are a Myth: Where you came from, there might be this law about using crosswalks, but that doesn’t really exist here. Pedestrians rule the world, and that includes those wild runners. When you need to cross the street, you cross that street. Crosswalks simply let drivers know which students aren’t from around here because they’re actually using them.