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As a freshman on campus, you have one main goal: to not look like a freshman oncampus. Unfortunately, even as a newcomer to campus, it usually isn’t hard topick the frosh out of the pack. These 15 tell-tale signs are all too often the give-away.

15. Finishes Problem Sets Four Days Early

If you guessed that the guy in your math class is a freshman because he turned in hisproblem set before you even realized you had one, you’re probably correct. You caneasily spot freshmen by their desire to be about a week ahead in class.


14. Raises Hand in Lecture

Freshmen often have yet to understand that raising their hand in lecture is a taboo action.While upperclassmen lounge in the back rows of lecture their mind partly on their notesand mainly on their phone, the lone hand waving high in the front of the room belongs tonone other than a freshman.

13. Walks in Packs

The number one fear as “the new kid” is being alone. Therefore, if you spy a pack ofstudents walking together, you accurately guessed that they are freshmen. Ironically,upperclassmen can often be seen walking alone because they aren’t worried about thisimage.


12. Drinks out of “Beat Meng” Cup

If you see someone drinking out of one of these fabled cups, you have spotted a freshman.Don’t worry, they aren’t drinking a strange red drink, the cup just mysteriously changescolors when filled.


11. Early for Class

There are 10 people crowded around the entrance to a classroom waiting anxiously forthe class before them to let out. It’s a good bet to assume the class they are awaiting is anintroductory level class and that you have found the overzealous freshmen who are terrified ofbeing late, or just have yet to understand how long it takes them to arrive to class.


10. Pocket Style Manual

Luckily most people probably don’t get a good glance into your backpack, but if theyspot your Pocket Style Manual it’s a dead give-away that you are a freshman. Thismandatory writing seminar text immediately identifies you as a newbie to Chicago Style, and to Princeton.


9. Struggles with the Laundry Machine

Yes, you are right, the kid next to you who can’t start the laundry machine is a freshman.This rule also applies to the kid struggling to work the printer in the cluster at Frist Campus Center.


8. Late Meal

Possibly the only times you want to be spotted as a freshman occur in the time blocksfrom 2 p.m.-3:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.-10 p.m. when you flock to Frist for the all-important Late Meal. Upperclassmen look on jealously as you hand over your prox anddeclare “Late Meal” upon checkout. That unlimited meal plan sure comes in handy whencomes the time to stock your fridge.


7. Replies All on an Email

About five emails you receive a day come from people who clicked the almighty “replyall” button. Most likely they were all freshmen who have yet to receive enough of theseemails to understand just how aggravating they are.


6. Wears Nice Shoes to the Street

Trying to look good for the street just isn’t worth ruining your shoes, and everyupperclassman has certainly realized this. That girl who goes out in niceheels is undoubtedly a freshman.


5. Overfilled Backpacks

Freshmen don’t take more classes than everyone else on campus. If anything, they takefewer. Nonetheless, if you see someone walking around with a backpack bulging at allangles it’s a pretty good bet that he’s a freshman. Overambitious and feeling the needto work during every free moment, freshmen often lug all their textbooks and notebooks withthem everywhere they go.


4. Stick-On Phone Pocket

There is no denying that the stick-on phone pocket is an incredibly handy gadget.Pull one of these out, however, and everyone around you knows it: you are a member of Princeton’s fine Class of 2018.


3. Shiny New Prox

Your prox is your key to life here, so naturally every upperclassman’s is scratched andworn from years of use. So, when you whip out your prox to enter your dorm or toswipe into a meal it glistens in an extraordinary way reserved for those proxes that haveyet to see the stresses of a full year at Princeton.


2. Princeton App

I was told more times than I can remember that the Princeton App is the best way tosubtly map your way across campus without looking lost. “You just look like you’retexting!” all upperclassmen have advised. Too soon I realized this was not the case asI began to recognize all my peers by their furtive glances at their phones followed by thenervous survey of their surroundings. I guess we are out of luck on that one.


1. Residential College Apparel

I’m not arguing that your new Forbes College fleece or Whitman College vest is not incredibly nice.Nothing screams freshman, however, more than loudly than sporting these items as younavigate campus — nothing except your “Clash of the Colleges” T-shirt, that is). Beproud and support your college, but just know that there’ s no hiding that you’re a freshmanany longer.

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