Places on campus to avoid the first week of the semester


Until freshmen have grown sick of the Union Street Market, writer Abby Brone recommends avoiding the Student Union at all costs. (File photo/The Daily Campus)

The start of a new school year is not necessarily the most fun experience, but it is certainly exciting and frequently eventful. As a returning student, you get to see your friends again and rehash old memories.

But as a freshman, you have no clue what is going on. This means congregating in the same places and scrambling for the typical must-do UConn experiences. So, for upperclassmen, we learn to avoid these places, at least for the first week or so.

The gym:

If you didn’t achieve your ideal “summer body,” everyone decides to try again in the fall, as if the stress of academics and the need for a social life will make this goal any more attainable. Many people try to start out the semester strong and maintain a healthy gym routine for about a week. A happy alternative to suffering through the over packed athletic facilities is walking. The weather is still nice enough to walk to class, so let that suffice until the harsh New England winter necessitates busses and the business of the gym has died down.

Jonathan statue:

Most freshman manage to squeeze this classic UConn picture in during their move-in day, frequently instigated by their parents. But for those who failed to do so, or refused to suffer the embarrassment with their parents present, the first week of classes is most often when their picture with Jonathan’s statue outside of Gampel occurs. Located in a central area, walking to class or the bookstore with friends, freshmen or transfers feel they can discreetly stop for a photo-op. Even upperclassmen partake in the Jonathan-loving festivities, comparing their start of the semester pictures with the statue through all four years.

The bookstore:

The UConn bookstore is a battlefield year-round, but never more so than the beginning of the semester. Those who either opted to delay the acquisition of their books or whose professors neglected to post the required texts prior to the start of the semester, can be found on the upper level of the bookstore, spending hundreds of dollars on an access code and a textbook they will open only to cite in a bibliography. An alternative to the hectic bookstore is purchasing the materials online, either before the year begins or at the start of the year and get by without it for the first week. If you are forced to enter the bookstore to purchase a text during the first week of classes, I am so sorry.

The Student Union:

Avoiding the U seems to be impossible but necessary. Try to avoid the urge to get Dairy Bar or Freshens for the first week. Just let the newbies gorge themselves on taco salads and pasta until they can’t look at the Union for at least a month. After this first week, it should be safe to re-enter.

This is not to say that there is any shame in partaking in these activities or frequenting these places. We all did it our freshman year and you’re damn right I would take another picture with the Jonathan statue if the right moment arose.     

Abby Brone is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at

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