25 Things to do Before you Graduate
Illustrations by Tom Booth ’06
As they began their final semester on the Hill, members of the Hamilton Alumni Leadership Training (HALT) program were asked to reflect back and share their top recommendations for things to do before graduation. Comprising 50 members of the senior class, HALT students spend the year preparing to be alumni leaders, learning how the College operates and how to enhance communication and a sense of community among their classmates. The program is in its sixth year.
Contributing to this list were Jill Pugach, Sara Carhart, Jenny Orbaker, Fahreza Hidayat, Kevin Donegan, Elizabeth Debraggio, Peter Kopp, Michael Blasie, Rachel Schwartzman, Ingrid Tharasook, Erin Wong, Allison Gold, Emma Dunn, Lindsay Sorin and Matthew Clark.
- Swing on the Rock Swing. You can't boast about it if you've never done it.
- Visit the Howard Diner during late-night hours. Even if you don't like breakfast food, the atmosphere is something you need to try. Whether you have been studying, partying or are just plain hungry, this place is unique to Hamilton, and you should try it once or 1,000 times.
- Try the G-Road slip 'n' slide on Class and Charter Day.
- Try Alternative Spring Break. Although a 12-hour cramped Jitney ride and community service sound miserable compared to piña coladas and palm trees, I can say I have done both, and I would take the hammer and nails any day.
- Play a sport, either varsity or intramural or both. It's a great way to stay in shape and to meet new people.
- Go snowshoeing or sledding in the Root Glen.
- Bond with at least one alumnus or alumna. They're going to introduce you to a network of dedicated and amazing people, and I promise you'll be blown away by how much they want to help.
- Attend an a cappella concert in the Chapel.
- "Deadbug" someone on the Martin's Way bridge.
- See your friends at their best. Go to senior projects, performances, presentations. You know how hard they've worked; now support them when it counts.
- Do Adirondack Adventure. It is one of my favorite parts of Hamilton. I am still best friends with a couple of girls from my trip, and it is an easy way to automatically have 10 friends when you arrive for the first day of school.
- Have a Café Opus chocolate chip cookie right after it has come out of the oven.
- Don't forget about our neighbor, Utica. I would definitely recommend that seniors volunteer with HAVOC (Hamilton Action Volunteer Outreach Coalition).
- Summit the rock wall at the Blood Fitness and Dance Center.
- Attend Midnight Mass for Christmas. Regardless of your religion, this Mass gets you into the holiday spirit and puts things in perspective before finals start.
- Attend a F.I.L.M. event. Some of the world's most respected filmmakers show their films in the K-J Aud every Sunday. You'd never get to see anything like this (or hang out with anyone like this) anywhere, ever.
- Pull an all-nighter at the Library.
- Experience a Buffergram. If 12 beautiful, serenading men have yet to wake you up at 6 a.m. on Valentine's Day, you don't know what you're missing.
- Play in the snow on a school night. It may be cold and you may have a paper to write, but when else in your life can you justify acting 5 years old with the same people you discuss modern algebra with?
- Visit President Stewart during her office hours.
- Grab a sled and go sledding down Rogers Estate.
- Take a class entirely out of your comfort zone. It may make you kick and scream with frustration, but if it doesn't kill you it will make you stronger. I'm a math and sociology major who can say Intro to Stage Performance was the most challenging and rewarding class I have ever taken.
- Drink at least one Utica Club at the Rok. Support the local economy.
- Watch at least one episode of VH-1's I Love the '90s on a sparkling new Blood Fitness Center treadmill.
- Run the G-Road loop. You know the immediate campus is pretty, but you need to appreciate what is just beyond your dorm.