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college campus

The 10 Best College Towns and Cities

Boston SquareI loved going to college in Norman, Oklahoma. The city is definitely a college-town and I think it is one of the best places in the world to go to college. However, Unigo.com had a different opinion.

According to them, Boston is the best city in the USA for students to go to college. Why?

“Often, friends and I would go around the city to eat in Boston’s ‘little Italy’ the North End, or catch a Red Sox game, or go to a local bar and shoot pool,” said Rachel, a theater major at Boston University. “The benefit, for me, of going to college within a city was there never seemed to be a shortage of anything to do.”

That makes sense to me. Although BU does not have a traditional campus, there are more than 50 other colleges in Boston, so you can have that academic environment or enjoy living and studying amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.

The next city that made the list is Charleston, South Carolina. This city is located close to a beach and is also a tourist hotspot.

“Charleston is a vacation destination for many people, so it is cool to live in a place other people are only lucky enough to visit,” said Andrea, a biology major at the College of Charleston.

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How to Make Friends on Campus

two college girls studying togetherIf you’re not living in the dorms, you’ll likely feel left out and unsure how to make friends. I struggled to make friends my freshman year of college, with my commute being more than a half hour. It wasn’t until my sophomore year that I started to spend more time on campus and eventually got to know some students on campus.

Meeting new people can be a challenge, especially if you don’t live on campus. Read these tips that will help you make instant friends.

Join a club: Try to find a club or student group that coincides with your major. Not only will you likely meet people that take the same courses, you’ll make a strong connection with people who share the same interests as you. Sports teams also offer a great way to meet students who have a common interest with you.

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Weird and Unique College Clubs

Finding a group that fits your interests is a very important part of being happy in college. When I first came to college, I joined some traditional clubs, such as Spanish Club, a sorority, and a professional writing club.

However, if I had been interested in a more unique hobby, such as lumber jacking, I would have been out of luck at my school. I guess I would have had to transfer to another school – like Michigan Technological University – to pursue my passion.

Many schools are now offering clubs and organizations for their students that are more diverse and unique. Check out some of the most unique college clubs- and see if anything peaks your interest:
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College Campuses are Banning Bottled Water

Even though many people have switched to reusable water bottles, the disposable kind are still common place. Many college campuses are looking to change that, as is the case with Macalester College and The College of St. Benedict.

These two schools have joined a nationwide movement that will ban disposable water bottles from their cafeterias and admissions offices. The College of St. Benedict is the ninth school in the nation to take things a little farther and completely ban the sale and purchase of water bottles on its campus entirely.

Apparently, this trend is not only affecting college campuses. Some cities, including New York City and San Francisco, have passed laws that ban the use of city money to buy bottles of water. There are even some cities that are considering banning the sale of these products within the city limits.

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ZipCar Partners with Ford to Offer New, Better Cars to Students

We first heard about ZipCar in 2009. ZipCar is a convenient solution for students who don’t have a car on their college campus because it allows them to reserve and borrow it whenever they need, for however long they need it.

Now, ZipCar is partnering with Ford in an effort to reach college-age drivers more effectively. Within the next two years, 1,650 models of Ford vehicles will be available for ZipCar users to drive. Ford will also help differ the rental charge and membership fee for college drivers who use their cars.

So why is Ford doing this? As an advertising major, it seems pretty obvious to me: Ford is hoping to build brand loyalty among college drivers with the hope that after graduation, these drivers will want to buy a Ford vehicle.

“What we are really going to be doing is getting some feedback from [college-age ZipCar members] in terms of what they like, what they don’t like, what we can do differently,” said Ford Chairman Bill Ford. “So we’d like them to make a lifelong process of thinking about the Ford Motor Company.”

If you own a car see what is it worth with KBB or NADA.

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Many College Campuses are Now 100 Percent Tobacco-Free

Everyone knows that you can’t smoke inside a college building or within 25-feet of any entrance door. However, some college campuses are now becoming entirely smoke-free in an effort to create a healthier and tobacco-free campus.

Last summer, students and staff members at the University of Kentucky patrolled the campus, and when they saw anyone smoking – student, employee, or visitor – they politely asked the smoker to dispose of his/her cigarette. In return for the cigarette, the members of Tobacco-free Take Action! would give the smokers information about resources on campus that would help them quit smoking.

The events at the University of Kentucky are not new to college campuses: there have been more than 500 campuses in the USA that have become 100 percent smoke-free or tobacco-free. There have been 120 campuses that adopted the smoke-free policy in the past year alone.

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Foursquare Launches Universities 2.0 on Hundreds of College Campuses

Last year, the popular social media app foursquare announced plans to officially partner with more than 20 universities across the nation to help students explore their college campuses and learn about their school’s traditions. The program was a huge success and now than 10 million users joined in on the fun. Now foursquare is making the program even bigger and better with a new and improved version called Universities 2.0.

Universities 2.0 will have all of the fun features that the original foursquare for universities had, such as the ability to check in at various locations on campus, learn about traditions and folklore, and see what your friends thought about various things related to your campus. However, Universities 2.0 will have something that the original program did not have: badges. These badges will represent the schools on foursquare and also could be used on college campuses to advertise that the campus is a foursquare-friendly zone.

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College Campuses Have the Fastest Internet Connections

computerThere is nothing more annoying than a slow Internet connection. I hate when it takes more than 15 seconds to load the website I’m trying to view; I don’t even bother with dial-up connections. If you are like me and detest slow broadband speeds, maybe you should move to Berkeley, California.

According to the most recent report by Akamai Technologies, Berkeley has the fastest average Internet speeds on the planet. Surprisingly, three locations in the country topped the list, above South Korea and Japan.

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Valet Parking Introduced at Florida International University

florida international universityParking on campus has long been one of most popular gripes of college students. But Florida International University has found a solution for its parking problems – valet! The West Miami-Dade campus has 38,000 students and 14,000 parking spaces, and it doesn’t take a math major to know that some students are going to be left scrambling for a space to make it to class in time.

The valet service is an experiment, with the pilot program running for three months. The service costs $5 for the first two hours and up to $12 per day; campus parking meters cost $1 per hour and up to $8 per day. Read the rest of this entry »



U.S. College Cafeterias Saying Goodbye to the Tray

Here’s a new green trend in college education: cafeterias without trays.  Students at colleges and universities across the U.S. have come back to school to find their cafeterias trayless, and suddenly find themselves carrying their meals back to their tables sans a handy carrying device.

cafeteria tray

Here’s why.  Going trayless saves money and helps the environment.  At the University of Florida, officials estimate that going trayless will save close to half a million gallons of water annually, not to mention soap.  That’s quite a savings in the school’s water bill that also lightens the load on an area that’s been stricken by drought for multiple years.

In addition, getting rid of the trays means less wasted food.  Students tend to only take what they can eat because there’s only so much they can carry.  This means less food in the landfills, which also saves the school money and lightens the load on the environment (and perhaps takes a chunk out of the dreaded Freshman 15).

Some students are going to complain, of course.  In a crowded cafeteria, this might cause a bit of chaos, as people wander back and forth from the cafeteria line to bring back their food.  If it’s really a problem, though, perhaps students can bring their own trays.  They can wipe them down after each meal and wash them after every few. Or hey, if your hands are full, stick a few items in your backpack.

At any rate, this strikes me as an innovative idea, even if students are stuck balancing their food.





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