Personal Growth While Finding Community and a Sense of Belonging

It is easy to say Princeton is beautiful, but real beauty goes beyond appearance and reputation. The heart of a school is the people and the people at Princeton are some of the best you’ll ever meet–they make this school beautiful. Is it easy to make friends? Will I fit in? These are the most common questions first-years ask before entering Princeton’s campus and I think at the root of these questions, it boils down to: will I find a community? Students from around the country and even the world enter Princeton’s orange bubble and hope they’ll find belonging. What does it mean to belong?

In my first year, I didn’t know what to expect. I wish I could say that I worried about the common concerns many other students had coming in. Instead, I was just excited to have a normal college experience, see people face to face, and create connections. My lack of expectations made it easier for me to settle. I didn’t engage in all the opportunities available and never stepped outside my comfort zone. My first year was a learning experience, it was filled with trials and errors and sometimes isolation. While it may not have been the most ideal experience, it highlighted how important it was for me to push myself and seek connections–to find my community. 

Two girls standing in front of Blair Arch.
This is my first year roommate Megan, we would always go on little food trips to Nassau Street trying to find our favorite place to eat. She's someone I can always depend on!

One of the ways I find belonging is in the classroom. My Latino Literature and Film seminar is a class full of Latine students who share similar lived experiences. I resonate so quickly with their feelings and I learn of different cultures and upbringings that influence perception on representation, all within an hour and a half. One of the reasons I love the Latino Studies program is because of Professor Rivera-Lopez. She constantly finds ways to make us question how Latine individuals are represented in film and what authentic stories look like. I previously took a seminar with her in the fall semester called "Introduction to Latino/a/x Studies" and this is where I learned a history that is so often overlooked and forgotten. Many people from the fall seminar decided to continue into the spring semester taking Professor Rivera-Lopez’s classes, these people began forming my community here. 

One of the other ways I find belonging is by demonstrating my support to the organizations that bring joy to my Princeton experience. Más Flow is Princeton’s premier Latine dance company which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary. A couple of friends and I went to their spring production “La Fiesta del Año”. I loved seeing my friends and people I had classes with perform on stage, dancing to music that reminded me a bit of home. I tend to look for community with what feels familiar to me, but I also just love catching up with people I work with or friends via quick trips to late meal and USG movie nights.

Pairs of dancers in white attire.
One of the many dances performed by Más Flow. This was one of my favorites because of the lighting design and the effortlessness in their moves. 

I can’t say I am the same person I was when I walked through FitzRandolph Gates during pre-rade but I like that I am still finding out who I am. Belonging does not have to be definite, our identities are complex and growing. The friendships you make your freshman year won’t always last but that doesn’t mean they weren’t meaningful. I love being able to interact with so many people who have interesting and different perspectives. Princeton's campus is a space where you are both challenged and embraced, that is one of the reasons I love it so much.

To the Class of 2027, I can’t ensure that your journey will be easy or perfect by any means but it will be memorable. Worries and excitement are all normal feelings but I hope you won’t allow your nerves to dictate your time here. Make that first step and try something new because if there’s a time or space to do anything, it’s at Princeton. Embrace the new atmosphere and don’t settle for what is within reach, community is most often found in places you’ll least expect it to be. Congratulations on your acceptance and I hope to see you next fall!

Let's Choose Courses

A ray of sunlight peeks through the window and your alarm clock rings for the fifth time. You wouldn’t be caught dead waking up this early in the morning normally, but it’s fall course selection time and it's an inevitable part of the process. Slowly, you rise up from bed and anxiously open your laptop to TigerHub. You remind yourself that today you are waking up this early so you have the luxury of sleeping in next year. Hours spent perfecting and curating the best schedule can all turn to dust if you don’t press enroll right at 7:30 a.m. I’ll take the story back a few weeks so you can have a clearer picture of my course planning process. 

Princeton usually releases courses for the fall semester a few weeks before course selection (this year course selection runs April 18-20). Depending on your year, you may go about course selection in a variety of ways but I’ll be speaking from the perspective of a rising junior who plans to major in psychology. So far, I’ve completed all my distribution requirements and pre-requisite courses for my major. As an A.B. concentrator, I had to take 11 general education courses to fulfill all of the distribution areas (not including the writing seminar and the foreign language requirement). All of the courses I’ve taken so far have been genuinely interesting; some I may not have anticipated taking before entering college, but nonetheless I’m glad I was able to expose myself to different areas of study. Meanwhile other courses, I can’t imagine a life without: LAO347: "Latinx Literature and Film", ANT308: "Empires of Debt" and AAS201: "African American Studies and the Philosophy of Race."

You need to have a game plan when you go into course selection. First, you should identify which courses you need to take for the semester. This usually includes prerequisites for your major or certificate. I need to take PSY300: "Research Methods in Psychology" because it is advised that I complete it before the end of my junior year and it's only available in the fall. I add that to my course planner on TigerHub; some students use ReCal (a course planner website made by Princeton students) but TigerHub is easy enough for me. Once I have that time sectioned off, I can begin to work my other courses around it. I use the Princeton course offerings advanced search feature to look for days and times that are convenient for me and browse through courses that I might be interested in. If I’m being honest, there’s no perfect way to find your courses. Sometimes I’ll search through all the subjects hoping that something interesting might pop up but usually I look under areas I’m interested in. My go-to subjects are Psychology, Latino Studies and Gender and Sexuality Studies

While this is not a required step, I like to ask my friends about any courses they might be taking next semester. There’s nothing better than entering a lecture hall and having someone already saving a seat for you. I also think it's helpful to have someone to bounce scheduling ideas off of and get a second opinion, so definitely make it a group effort, it’ll make the whole process seem less stressful. Since I am trying to complete a Latino Studies certificate, I look for classes that fit my time frame and that I think would be interesting. I found SPA250: "Identity in the Spanish-Speaking World" which has a really cool description. Then, I check out the requirements and grading system. I see that there are no exams and that I’ll be mainly graded on participation, papers and presentations. I tend to steer towards classes like this because I’d rather write papers than take exams. Other people prefer the opposite so there’s definitely a variety of classes that can fit either preference. One cool thing about this course is that there is a mandatory travel component where we would travel to Puerto Rico during fall break. 

Students sitting on a picnic blanket in the park eating food.
I recently went on a field trip for a different Latino Studies seminar. We went to El Museo del Barrio and toured East Harlem, we ended our trip with a picnic in Central Park. I love classes that have exciting outside the classroom opportunities.

Once I have planned a first-choice list of courses, I also search for backups. This is especially important for small class sizes like seminars, which tend to fill quickly. I also keep in mind the following tips:

  1. Timing: Think realistically about when you will wake up in the morning. Don’t register for an 8 a.m. if you’re more likely to be up late. If you’re a morning person, then go for it! 
  2. Lunch: Make sure to give yourself breaks for meals. Dining halls are only open for lunch between 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m., but you can always grab a late meal at Frist. 
  3. Reviews: Look at course reviews on Princeton Courses, these are all student reviews that really help put classes into perspective. 

With course selection coming next week, I am well prepared to pick quickly. Once I'm done, I'll be right back under my covers until the alarm for my 11 a.m. lecture!

March Madness at Princeton

Of the many loveable aspects of Princeton, the excellence of our athletic programs is likely not the first thing to come to mind. That said, Princeton is an amazing place for college sports, having won the most ivy titles by a large margin. Recently, Princeton has found itself on the national stage this March Madness.

I have always been a huge Princeton basketball fan! During the regular season, I go to as many home games as I can. Last year, I flew to Boston for our Ivy Madness playoffs, and this year I was able to attend the Ivy playoffs in Princeton during the first weekend of spring break! Basketball has been a huge component of my experience at Princeton, so you can probably imagine my excitement when both our men’s and women’s teams punched their tickets for March Madness this year.

Two girls standing in front of a basketball court
Watching Ivy Madness 2022 in Cambridge

Having watched so many of our men's games, I had faith in our matchup against Arizona in the first round. I'm a native Arizonan, and was home in Arizona for spring break during our game against University of Arizona. My mother and I watched the first game in an Arizona sports bar, all decked out in our Princeton gear. We got many dirty looks from the Arizona fans and encountered some trash talk from neighboring tables––I'm sure we were the only Princeton fans in the entire building. That first win felt incredible, and I remember jumping up and down and screaming! People would tell me that "we got lucky," but I was confident there was something special about this Princeton team.

I watched our second game against Mizzou at a hotel near the Taylor Swift concert I was attending that night. As chance would have it, I met up with Princeton alumni who had reserved the big screen for the game. It was incredible to experience that game with alumni and to be immersed in Princeton's community, even off campus.

Princeton alumni gather by the tv after Princeton basketball wins
Posing by the television with Princeton alumni after our basketball beats Mizzou in the second round

I was on campus for our final game against Creighton. The energy was electric. Students crammed into Whig to watch the game. Local news stations lined up along the sides of the building to interview students. We screamed together, we cheered together, and we celebrated this amazing team together.

Two students outside of an orange illuminated Whig
Whig illuminated orange for the basketball watch party

When I chose to attend Princeton, I never imagined an experience quite like this. Seeing our campus come together to support our basketball teams during such a historic run only reaffirmed that this truly is the best old place of all.

For the Love of ReCal, One of Many Student-created Apps

It’s that time of year again! That’s right, course selection – when Princeton students pick out their classes and build their schedules for the upcoming semester. In the spring, this happens around mid-April (with the exception of incoming first-years), while in the fall it takes place at the beginning of December. 

Personally, I’m one of those people that eagerly awaits the day that they post the new course options because I absolutely LOVE course selection! Coming up with the perfect schedule satisfies my over-organizational tendencies, and it’s always fun to peruse the interesting classes and see what courses your favorite professors are teaching next semester. But with the hundreds and hundreds of classes to pick from, it can definitely be overwhelming to sort through your options. You’ll probably wish that there was a way to visualize your course schedules. Fortunately, there is a TigerApp just for that! 

TigerApps are a series of apps/websites created and run by our very own Princeton students, and they’re “designed to improve your campus experience.” If you can name it, they probably have an app for it! There’s TigerDraw for looking at dorm reviews in preparation for the infamous room draw, TigerStudy if you're trying to find a study group for a certain class, and my favorite one, by far: ReCal

On ReCal, students can plan that perfect course schedule based on the updated list of classes for each semester. It automatically color-codes everything for you, and it’s super easy to add and remove courses. You can also select multiple classes for a certain time slot to see all your options side-by-side, and hovering over each class also lets you see the number of people currently enrolled in the course. It’ll even sync with your Google calendar!

What I love about ReCal is that it really encourages students to play around with their schedules and make sure they’re finding a balance for themselves. One semester, my first attempt at trying out a course combination on the website immediately made it obvious to me that my schedule was looking really “chunky” and blocked out. There wasn’t even a space for lunch! I knew that would be really overwhelming for myself, so I hit the remove button on ReCal, did some more searching, and found an alternative. Now, I always make sure that my ReCal schedule is looking spaced out with enough time to get to my classes without a rush, as few early mornings as possible, and, of course most importantly, some time carved out for lunch!

Check out ReCal now, and the many other wonderful TigerApps used by Princeton students!

My Identities and My Idol: Cheering for Messi and World-champion Argentina With Princeton’s Jewish-latino Community

Forget about George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King or Rosa Parks. Argentina’s only, true national hero is soccer player Lionel Messi. A legend admired by citizens of all generations, it’s every Argentinian’s dream to see him play live. That dream became a reality for me when Princeton’s Jewish-Latino community, J-Lats, invited me to an Argentina vs. Jamaica game in New Jersey last September. 

J-Lats had always been, and continues to be, an important community for me on campus. My experience as a Latino is fundamentally interwoven with my experience as a Jewish person, and my experience as a Jewish person is impossible to detach from the Latino context where it flourished. J-Lats gives me a group where that intersection of identities is celebrated— we host “Shabbat Picante!” at the Center for Jewish Life, we bring speakers, and we host world-cup-themed study breaks and food-filled meetings. 

When Argentina’s Fútbol Association announced a game in New Jersey, I thought to myself: "c’mon… New Jersey out of all places? This has to be a sign from the universe." I contacted J-Lats’s president, Alex Egol, and plans went into the works. Less than 2 weeks later, on September 27th, 2022, we were all on a train bound for the Red Bull Arena. We were welcomed by tens of thousands of fans wearing la albiceleste and passionately chanting on the team that just a few months later would crown itself FIFA World Cup champions.

5 people smiling to a selfie in a stadium
Alex, Vanessa, Helena, Vicky and I hyping up the best team of all times.

Only 13 minutes into the game and suddenly GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL!!! We skyrocketed out of our seats and screamed like there was no tomorrow; we hugged and vámos-carajoed. We watched the rest of the game attentively, and then he was released onto the playing field: Lionel Messi! Seeing him in real life was difficult to define. It was strange to see that he’s not a fictional legend that landed from the heavens: he’s a human with two legs, and mamma mia can those legs do stuff! Messi authored the 2nd and 3rd goals, which made the arena shake in what can only be described as South American spirit.

A girl and a boy smiling in front of a soccer field
Vicky and I are the only undergraduate students from Argentina. Hopefully we'll be more next time!

Coming back to campus, I felt grateful and lucky. Who would have guessed that the first time I’d see Argentina play live wouldn’t be in my homeland, but in New Jersey instead? The possibilities Princeton gives its students are endless, and they go from doing research with Nobel laureates, to designing computational universes, to fulfilling your dream of seeing your nation’s hero play fútbol.

I can say today, as I’m sure I’ll tell my grandchildren one day, that I saw Argentina’s World Cup champion team play live in the field, with 2 goals from the “GOAT” Messi. Vamos, carajo!

The Joy of Having Roommates

To say I lucked out with my first year dorm is an understatement. As the proud owner of a single in Whitman college, I felt like I had it all — A/C during the unbearably humid September days, gothic architecture in a new building, and (my personal favorite) a jack-and-jill bathroom. Yet, as my first year at Princeton flew by, I was confronted with the very sobering reality that my 100 square foot home would not be mine for much longer.

Whitman College at sunset

Having drawn for a quad, I knew that during my sophomore year I would have to conquer a challenge that I had never faced before: living with other people. For me, the biggest worry was that I would no longer get any time to myself. Where would I go if I wanted to call my parents? Where would I go if I wanted to hide from the rest of the world? Where would I go if I wanted to cry? These questions plagued my mind in the weeks leading up to move-in day. However, after living with three other girls for 6 months, I have come to realize that I enjoy living with roommates a lot more than I thought I would.

My roommates keep me accountable. When I wake up in the morning to the comforter neatly tucked into the bed next to mine, I feel like the least I can do is make my bed and tidy my shelf. (Though, when my roommate goes home for the weekend I catch myself slacking occasionally). In the evenings, my common room is silent, save for the sound of keys clacking and pages turning. Being surrounded by such a productive environment, I feel inclined to work a little harder myself. So, I begrudgingly pick up my notebook and begin my problem set.

I’d like to think that I also hold my roommates accountable. One time, my direct roommate told me that the reason why she gets up promptly in the morning is because she feels bad that I have to hear her alarm every five minutes. Funnily enough, despite my complaints at the beginning of the year, those alarms are now the primary reason why I am never late to my morning classes.

DEspite those examples, we also keep each other accountable for more than just school and work. When I see the last of the lamps turn off in the common room, I know that it is also my time to retire to bed, no matter how much work I wish I could have gotten done. When it’s 2 am and we somehow find ourselves in the U-Store, I know it’s my duty to stop my roommate from buying a Monster energy drink.

One night, I accidentally fell asleep while doing my readings in bed. The next morning, I woke up disoriented and in a panic. I patted around my bed for my laptop, only to find that it was no longer there. Confused, I stumbled out into the common room to find my laptop and my iPad on top of my desk, both plugged into their respective chargers. On my desk there was a bright green sticky note with the words: “Bozo! Devices charged for you.”

Bulletin board with notes

In some ways, living with roommates is different to living alone — on most days, I wake up an alarm that is not my own and I am extra mindful of being quiet at night. However, in the grand scheme of things, not much has changed. I still call my parents at my desk and I still hide under the covers when I don’t want to see anyone. Sure, perhaps I don’t get as much alone time as I used to, but my roommate is there to drag me out of bed to a multitude of fun adventures from eating club parties to board game nights with friends — and that seems like a much sweeter deal to me.

Two girls holding a banner that says "First Day"

A Glimpse Inside a Res College Office

This past September, I started working at the front desk of the New College West Office — the one-stop shop where you can get answers to any of your “Westie” questions. It’s also home to many of the valuable people and resources that are available to help students throughout their Princeton journeys. Besides getting to earn a little extra money, this job has given me unique insight into the behind-the-scenes operations of my residential college and how one office helps keep the whole community running.

If you’re not a Westie, don’t fear! Each residential college at Princeton has an office just like ours. This is where you can find your college’s specific leaders, such as your Director of Student Life (or DSL for short), Dean of Studies, Residential Life Coordinator, and the Head of College. They all serve different purposes, but ultimately are there to support your needs, both academically and otherwise.

To find out more about your college’s team of awesome staff, click one of the links below! :

Over the past few months, I’ve gotten to see people come into the office for a variety of reasons. For example, at certain times during the week, the deans will have Drop-In Advising Hours, where any students can walk-in and meet with their respective dean to discuss academic concerns, like picking classes or managing workloads. I’ve also experienced students coming in to propose a community-building or club event that they want to see happen. And more often than not, we have students simply pop in the office just to grab some free chocolate or say hi!

My favorite part of working at the NCW office has to be our weekly res college tradition: Coffee in the Commons! Every Friday, as a study break, we help organize an event where students can gather and enjoy free coffee, tea, and some sort of treat or pastry. Most of the residential colleges do some variation of this event (like Yeh College’s “FriYEH” or the weekly “Teahive” for Butler College Bees), but Coffee in the Commons will always hold a special place in my heart. Most recently, we did a Mardi Gras-themed Coffee in the Commons, complete with king cake and donuts!

Three Mardi Gras king cakes on counter top
King Cakes at Coffee in the Commons, Mardi-Gras Themed!
Boxes of donuts on counter top
Donuts at Coffee in the Commons!

The colleges and their offices are truly another community within the Princeton community. I would highly recommend stopping by to meet the friendly staff members and mentors that will guide and support you throughout your four years here (and, while you’re at it, maybe consider applying for a job there, too!).

A Spontaneous Galentine's Day Tour of Library Square

While it is fair to say every Princeton student has toured Palmer Square at least once in their time here, far less have toured its next door neighbor Library Square. I had to look at it on a map to ensure I was naming the right area. While Nassau Street does have all my favorite restaurants and stores, I rarely find myself venturing there. The world beyond the FitzRandolph Gate always feels like a mystery to me, unless I’m grabbing a slice at Proof Pizza or buying the occasional mango green tea at Kung Fu Tea. This weekend though, my friend and I decided to skip our biweekly cycling session and explore Library Square. We had set our plans to grab a bite at my favorite restaurant in Princeton–Lan Ramen. (If you find yourself around here, I would definitely recommend getting their vegetable potstickers and Lanzhou braised beef noodle.) I’m getting ahead of myself here so bear with me. 

One lovely thing about Princeton (the town) and the University is the amount of construction that will most definitely detour your normal commute. The optimist in me remembers one of my life mottos: everything happens for a reason. I think one of the reasons that the left sidewalk was blocked was so I could find one of the best croissants I’ve ever eaten. This might be a bit of an exaggeration because I have been to Paris and eaten some of the best croissants ever, but the buttery-flaking missing hole in my life says that Bread Boutique is a close second. My friend and I walked past the store and immediately turned our heads back to the warm atmosphere and all of the amazing options available. The croissants were calling out my name so I knew I had to enter and buy some. They were absolutely delicious and I’ve officially marked it as my go-to place when I’m missing a flaky buttery pastry that used to be available at late meal. 

Outside a bread boutique store looking into a warm and yellow lighting atmosphere.
Just look how warm and inviting this place looks, I would say to definitely give it a try for a good morning breakfast or afternoon snack. 

I should also add that the weather in Princeton has been on the colder side. While my west coast friends almost always find some reason to complain about New Jersey weather, today was unlike the cold week we’ve been having. The sun was shining brightly and the air was positively cool–a perfect day to be outside. So, we took our croissants to go and sat outside at one of the many tables available. This was definitely an opportunity for a good photo session so we did take a lot of pictures but we also took in our surroundings. We noticed this cute little store hidden behind a huge tree and saw that there were sweaters hanging outside. This brings us to stop number two, Shop the World, a fair trade store. We entered the store and were amazed by how much they could fit into this tiny store. The person working told us that the owner travels the world to fill the store and with every object we picked up was able to tell us where it came from. My friend found a Mexican Baja jacket and instantly knew she had to buy it. We also found these cute animal figurines that were painted on with such intricate designs–we had to grab a few. If you’re looking to explore the world in one place, I recommend checking out the shop and supporting the workers who make everything there!

Outside a fair trade store with open windows.
The store seems to be tucked away but I hope this sign helps someone find it. 

Finally, we ended our expedition with a delicious meal at Lan Ramen. I’ll allow the food and atmosphere to speak for themselves but I’m truly glad that I decided to take a break from my highly organized Google Calendar schedule. Sometimes it's hard to find a moment of spontaneity when you feel like you have to schedule every minute of your life to feel productive, but a day like this is important. Something everyone says around here is that you have to make time for things that matter to you and that’s true, a day of relaxation is equally as important as a three-hour problem set cram session or a full day stuck in Firestone Library. This Galentine’s Day, make time to be spontaneous and have fun, I promise it’ll be worth it.

A bowl of ramen in a restaurant.
Just remember: your meal is healthy as long as it has some green in it (also very delicious).

New York Isn’t So Scary (Or So Far) After All

When I was applying to Princeton, I heard a lot about campus being only a short train ride away from New York City. As someone from Central Florida, though, this meant absolutely nothing to me. I had never been on a train before so the thought of figuring out how to navigate the trip to New York was extremely overwhelming. I also did not know how short a “short train ride” really was, and train-talk aside, the thought of going into a big city was equally terrifying.

My first time going into the City was at the end of my first semester at Princeton. Classes had just wrapped up, and my freshman seminar professor had planned a class trip for us to explore New York from the lens of American identity, as this had been the topic of our course. It was a memorable experience, but by the end of it, I realized I had been guided the whole time. 

This simply would not do–I had to conquer New York City on my own.

Photo of a street lined by buildings and trees in New York City.

In September, my sister visited me over the weekend. At nine in the morning we walked to the “Dinky” (our beloved train that takes us from Princeton Junction to Princeton Station, the shortest passenger train route in the United States), and in less than an hour and a half we had made it from Princeton Station to Penn Station. After a short ten minutes of walking in the opposite direction, we spent the day exploring shops that piqued our interest and walking through Central Park. By 6 PM we were back on campus, eating cheese fries while I did some of my work for the next week.

Over winter break I braved the Dinky and NJ Transit once again, this time with two of my close friends, Tara and Lucia. It was the Friday before classes started and the perfect goodbye to break. By 10:30 AM we were already drinking hot chocolate and eating delicious bagels in New York. After a quick stop to eat banana pudding and take pictures, we made it to the Museum of Modern Art, where we spent hours exploring the various floors and taking advantage of Lucia’s knowledge on modern art as our own personal tour guide. 

Photo of Frida Kahlo's "Self portrait with cropped hair" in the Museum of Modern Art.

Afterwards, we stopped for gelato, explored a bookstore, and grabbed a quick meal. By sunset we were already on our way back to Princeton.

Oh, and did I mention we never got lost?

Three Princeton students smiling inside of a bookstore.

As much as I love campus, it’s good to get away every now and then. The occasional day trip is a great and accessible option, not only to New York, but other nearby cities as well. This means that you can experience the city whenever you choose while still enjoying the small-town feel of the surrounding Princeton area.

I may not do this every weekend, but all of this is to say: New York City really is only a short train ride away.

Building Community in the Residential Colleges

One of the topics that incoming students most frequently have questions about is residential life at Princeton. While Princeton prides itself on its superior academic program, residential life is an important component of the student experience here.

I am a Residential College Adviser, or RCA, at Butler College, one of seven residential colleges. My role is to foster and build community among students, as part of a team of Butler College staff, RCAs and other peer leaders within the residential college. One of the ways we do this is by putting on a variety of events for all students in the Butler community, to connect, have fun and take a break from studying. 


A tree with green, yellow, and red leaves against a backdrop of brick buildings and blue sky.
Outside Butler College

My favorite event is the Butler Teahive, a weekly study break that the Butler College staff organizes for all students. At 3:00 p.m. every Friday, one of the rooms in the Butler basement is transformed into a social hub where students connect with each other over a cup of tea and a selection of delicious desserts and berries from a rotating cast of local bakeries and restaurants. I’ve gotten excellent academic advice from the Butler college staff in a low-pressure environment, I get to see some friends and even make new ones, and there’s always plenty of delicious treats for everyone. 

In addition to the weekly events put on by Butler College staff, the student-run Butler College Council, and RCAs like me, there are also one-time events held regularly. Resident Graduate Students (RGS) or Butler College Council often plan these fun, community building events that try their best to include every type of student. If you’re itching to burst out of the so-called ‘Orange Bubble’ you can join your residential college for a Broadway show or a Six Flags trip. Those with an artistic bent might enjoy the many arts and crafts nights, from paint and sip (with boba) to karaoke night. Or if you prefer a laid-back kind of vibe, there’s always game nights and watch parties (most recently for the World Cup). 


A colorful poster advertising "Community Wall Night" at Butler College.
One of the many RGS-organized community events.

I’ve spoken about my experience at Butler College, the residence college I work for and have lived in for all of my time at Princeton. But all seven operate in the same way and offer the same amount of programming and community building that we at Butler do. No matter which college you end up in, you’ll have plenty to do and many friends to meet!