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First-years head back to hometowns for much-needed confidence boosts

A train is waiting at the Dinky Station,
The Dinky Station at Princeton
Louisa Gheorghita / The Daily Princetonian

The following is purely satirical and entirely fictional.

Following a humbling initial midterms season and challenging start to their Princetonian careers, first-years plan to seek solace by flocking back to their hometowns for fall break, where the standards and expectations are much lower.


“I miss being in an environment where getting into Princeton felt like an unique accomplishment,” says first-year and prospective politics concentrator Deb Baitte. “That was unfortunately the coolest thing about me, but everyone here has done it too.”

Baitte shares that her entire lived experience revolved around quirky but isolating character traits that would continue to set her apart.

She explains, “I was always told I would make a great lawyer because I was argumentative. Here, that’s half the politics department! And the other half had either already passed the bar exam, clerked for a Supreme Court justice, or helped their neighbor win their Senate race.”

Many students express insecurity evoked by similar situations and seem to suffer not from impostor syndrome, but instead from “uh-oh, I’m not special anymore” syndrome. To soothe seasonal flare-ups of this syndrome, the American Psychological Association recommends making regular visits to your hometown to flex your accomplishments to those who doubted you.

Additionally, first-year Tiger Track Survey reports show that members of Princeton’s newest “great class” feel significantly less resentment towards their parents than they did just six weeks ago in a class-wide survey issued right before move-in day.

“I wouldn’t trade Yeh dining hall food for what I got back home,” mentions Sasha Choi, a first-year from Lebanon, Tennessee, home of the original Cracker Barrel. “But I’ve forgotten what living at home was like, and I honestly just miss my parents and siblings. I think I judged them prematurely before. I’ve changed now.”


In surveys issued specifically to upperclassmen who escaped the throes of various Princetonian “syndromes” commonly contracted by first-years, The DailyPrintsAnything finds older students increasingly less likely to return home to their families or towns of origin during recesses.

“Go home? When I can travel on Princeton’s money?” asks Marvin Boyd, a junior in the Economics Department on the political economy track. “Not when there’s cultural immersion waiting. With free room and board.”

Mya Koffie is a first-year and prospective Politics major from Appleton, Wis. She is excited to spend her fall break arguing with much smarter nerds at a British Parliamentary debate tournament in Toronto and enjoying a whopping four days in Appleton, where underclassmen at her old school will ask incessantly for college application advice and her mom will make her feel like the most special person in the world.

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