#Whitman Withdrawals….how to deal

Well, it’s that time of the year again for us Whitman students: The middle of winter break. Winter break for us is five weeks long and right about now is the time most students are looking at their calendars and experience that same feeling you get in your stomach as you are going down a really steep part on a roller-coaster.

Why?

Well, we all obviously missed our families and were super excited to see them. But the holidays are wrapping up (get it? presents? wrapping? IT’S PUNNY!), we’ve seen our families, they’re great and we got our family fix. We are experiencing Whitman Withdrawals!! Now the only thing left is new years and then two weeks of waiting to go back to Whitman. TWO WEEKS. Doesn’t sound bad right? WRONG. We miss our Whitman “family” just as much as we missed our real families, and 14 days of “relaxation” is standing in between us, and our Whitman family. It’s basically the equivalent of finals week (3 exams, and two final essays, or something horrendous of the sort) standing in the way of us and going back home!

I’m not the only one! See below…

These are just a few status’ I (creepily) found to prove my point. I’ve talked about Whitman Withdrawals before (see–> http://kayvonsblog.wordpress.com/2011/11/12/almost-turkey-time/) and am glad to see that the term I coined as caught on among other Whitties! But this still serves to show, that we all miss Whitman! and we all want/need to go back to get our fix!

At the request of numerous Whitties, I’ve been asked to blog about how to deal with symptoms of Whitman Withdrawals and how to survive until school starts back up again.

Like I said in my first post on Whitman Withdrawals, try checking out the campus webcams, http://www.whitman.edu/content/campustour/webcams.

You can check out to see if it’s snowing, maybe you’ll see a professor walking their dog on Ankeny, or somebody walking through Reid Campus center and you’ll get all excited and keep refreshing the page to see where their going (like a hardcore creeper).

Though creeping on the webcams will make you feel better, and give you your Whitman fix, it’s only momentary. The second you X out of that webpage, you’ll find that you miss Whitman even more now that you’ve seen it live. At which point, I suggest the following…

Creep on your Whitman friends using Facebook!

Yeup! It’s a great idea! It allows you to easily catch up with all your friends, especially now with the new Timeline feature that Facebook has! You will find yourself clicking through photos of your friends from Whitman endlessly. You’ll click through their pictures from their Scramble trips! (For you readers that don’t go to Whitman…yet…Scrambles are trips put on by the Outdoor Program for new incoming students, they are led by current students and happen one or two weeks before new students get to campus. These trips are basically pre-orientation weeks of fun for all the new students where you can go backpacking, white-water rafting, rock climbing, and kayaking! super fun! even if you aren’t outdoorsy like me….I went on one and loved it!!).

After you’ve clicked through all of their Scramble pictures you’ll probably move on to click through all their pictures they have with their Sections of them going out to section dinners, having formal dinners with other sections…etc! It’ll be just like you were there (unless you were actually there if you are in the same section as them…then it’ll be just like you are re-living a time of your life that you wish you were actually able to re-live!)

After that you’ll stumble onto pictures of them going out to parties, doing ridiculous things in their sections, on Ankeny, and all the other random things they have been doing the past semester!

Finally, after that you’ll probably start clicking through all their pictures from High School Graduation and before…and that’s when you really get to know your friends. You’ll probably find yourself saying in your head “wow they had that haircut in high school?” or “Aww, they were a nerd like me!” and suddenly you’ll feel closer with those friends, without having to be at Whitman! Woo!! Goal achieved!

During this period of Whitman Photo Creeping, you’ll find yourself “liking” and commenting on all your friends’ pictures, subsequently sending them dozens of notifications which will result in your friends (who are undoubtedly missing Whitman too) feeling special and happy the next time they log on to Facebook (which will be relatively soon, I assure you). This will result in them promptly “liking” your comments, and commenting back, as well as probably begin creeping through your own pictures too! EUREKA!! You have killed three birds with one stone (the stone being facebook stalking your friends’ pictures). 1) You have successfully distracted yourself from your Whitman Withdrawals for a period of time, 2) You have made your friends happy by giving them Facebook notifications 3) You have given your friends something to do to pass the time away from missing Whitman, and will subsequently be receiving notifications as well! Huzah!!!

But the downside….this cycle of happiness cannot last forever, and eventually you will have clicked through all the pictures you can click through, and so will your friends…and the symptoms of Whitman Withdrawals will begin to set in yet again. So move on to the following:

Reading articles on The Pioneer‘s Website!

Yeup, that’s right! Get caught up on your Whitman news! Do it here–> http://whitmanpioneer.com/

It’s always interesting to read up on the news and happenings of Whitman. And if you are an avid following of The Pioneer already, and have read all their articles from this semester, READ THEIR ARTICLES FROM LAST SEMESTER! AND THE SEMESTER BEFORE THAT AND SO ON! They are interesting, AAANNNDD you get to know a little bit of back history from the times and happenings of Whitman! Woo!!! Also, it appears that the opinion writers at least, are posting over break too…this is my favorite thus far –> http://whitmanpioneer.com/opinion/blogs/offcampusblogs/henrygalesoffcampus/2011/12/23/i-would-kill-for-a-burrito/. And for readers who aren’t students yet, this is a great way to get to know Whitman!

Talk about how much you love Whitman on College Search Sites!

I didn’t use one of these when I was searching for Colleges, but apparently they are increasing in popularity with those that are currently searching for colleges! So if you are anything like me, you LOVE talking about Whitman. And the best way to put that to use, and talk about Whitman to no extend without annoying your family and friends back home is to talk about it online to people who care and want to know more!

Some popular and reputable college search cites are: Unigo.com, Collegeconfidential.com, and Collegeview.com

Make an account (don’t worry it’s safe) and post about how much you love Whitman. Take their surveys. Rank the different parts of your college experience. Answer the prompts. etc… this is a great time killer, it lets you ramble about how much you love Whitman, and takes your mind off of how much you wish you were back and puts it on analyzing how your experience at Whitman so far as been.

And for readers that aren’t current students, these websites are great ways to get to know the different colleges you are looking at and great ways to get some questions you’ve got answered! (p.s. you can always shoot me an email if you have any questions too! behrookt@whitman.edu)

If this still isn’t enough (and it probably isn’t) keep reading.

Go watch some movies about College

YEUP! I’m serious. There are some super entertaining ones out there, while they’ll make you miss college, you’ll at least be occupied with something entertaining.

My absolute favorite movie for this is : Revenge of the Nerds Directed by Jeff Kanew. It looks pretty cheesy, and well…it is (as are ALL great movies about college), but it is soooooo soo soooo entertaining.

Other movies that will serve this purpose quiet nicely:

-School Daze, The Rules of Attraction, National Lampoon’s Animal House, Accepted, Slackers, Harold and Kumar go to White Castler (not that college esq’ but still entertaining), Real Genius, PCU, Dead man on Campus, Legally Blonde, and the heart touching story of National Lampoon’s Van Wilder

I listed those in no particular order, so you should watch them all. SO. SO. good, and that is a good 20hrs of time wasting right there!

Still not enough? well fine, lets keep going.

Hang out with your friends going back to School.

Notice that all of the above ways to deal with Whitman Withdrawals involve sitting and staring at a screen? Yeah, well that’s because right after the new years, your friends that go to State Universities will be returning to classes, leaving you all alone with nobody to hang out with…..but what if you could hang out with someone? In fact, what if you could hang out with those very friends that are ditching you for school (lucky jerks!). It may not be Whitman, but it’s a college campus none-the-less! Call up one of your friends that is going back to school and inform them that you plan to sleep on their dorm room floor for a couple nights.

I did this last year, I went back to school with one of my friends that attends UW. I stayed the night on her floor in her dorm, went to class with her, had meals with her and her roommates, and experienced (at least for a couple days) what life as a UW student was like! It was fascinating and fun! It was like being in a new world! I had tons of fun, sat in on a class called Murder, discovered what it was like to have a 20 minute walk to class, made some friends in her dorm, and enjoyed life as a UW students for a few days. It was great!

I highly highly recommend, if you have a friend willing to host you, to give this a shot! It is super fun. In the end, I will say, while I enjoyed my time at UW I am still very very very happy I am a Whitman student and wouldn’t trade it in for the world!

STILL NOT ENOUGH?

Go outside. Make a friend. Volunteer. Go grocery shopping with your parents. Take up body building. Go online shopping and have everything sent to Whitman so you have even more to be excited about when you get back. Visit some Whitman friends near you (there aren’t any Whitman friends near you?….then start looking for houses online that are in areas where more Whitman students live!). Remember for next year to sign up for WFR (Wilderness First Responder Course…the certification you need to be a Scramble leader) so you have an excuse next year to go back to Whitman the first week of the new year (WOOO!)

STILL NOT ENOUGH?

Start a blog….blog about Whitman. that’s what I do now!

In the end, for current students of Whitman, I hope this helps! Don’t worry, Whitman Withdrawals are not fatal, they are just annoying. Just know that the moment you get back to Whitman you are going to feel the happiest you have ever felt, ever.

For readers that aren’t students yet, think about it this way: If you are going to be spending large sums of money on higher education, you want to be spending large sums of money on an institution that not only provides you with an outstanding academic curriculum, but makes you want to come back for more: more of the academics, more of the people, and above all more of the life that you end up making for yourself there. If you love your school so much that you actually want to go back after only two and a half weeks of winter break (for most of us, even earlier) and miss it so much that there is a term for it that other students use (Whitman Withdrawals)…if means that this school is an amazing and unique place that should be given serious consideration when you are deciding where you want to spend the next four years of your life learning.

CHEERS! #Whitman Withdrawals.

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