Battle of the Pre-Orientation Programs: FUP vs. PWild

Battle of the Pre-Orientation Programs: FUP vs. PWild

Those little freshman fuckers are still milling around campus and I'm starting to think that they might be here for the long haul. Freshman at this stage in their Northwestern development can still only talk about three things: Russian lit with that fancy old dude, that hot kid that throws up in the hall every weekend and finally and most importantly, their pre-orientation program.

The pre-orientation program they embarked on right before WW becomes 50% of their personality for the next four years. I didn’t do a pre-orientation program so I only use 50% of my brain but I have been able to gather intel by observing countless conversations and Facebook posts riddled with different acronyms. ASB seems like they actually try to do some good or something so absolutely nothing juicy to say about that one. I still don’t understand Catalyst and I think it’s like a startup summer camp where your biggest thrill is a rock climbing wall and saying woo a lot which sounds like a great time if you are 50-year-old with a mid-life crisis.

At the end of the day it really only comes down to those pesky programs we all know and love because the people that go on them don’t stop talking about them, ever. It is really about Project Wildcat VS. the Freshman Urban Program. One is in the woods, one is in the big bad city of Chicago but most importantly, both create the illusion of friendship and security for freshman before they are confronted with the harsh realities of suburban big ten living. Both groups have pros and cons to the campus clout that they allow one to accumulate before even setting eyes upon that damn ass rock.

FUP Pros

  • You are the foremost expert on Chicago in all of Bobb hall. Move over Mary Patillo and suck it Bill Savage. They don’t know anything in comparison to you and your motherfupping best pals. You can lead your less experienced and dimwitted friends through the treacherous bowels of the city like the loop, using the CTA. (You will of course uber back because who wants to wait at Howard. Don’t you know it smells bad there?)

  • You are artsy now! You spent a week in the city which is more than most freshman can probably say so you are the foremost authority on culture and art. You already made an appointment to get your Chicago flag tattoo (just a delicate homage on your ankle of course). One scornful comment of  “Oh you didn’t buy your tickets to Chance the Rapper yet” and all the other freshman are putty in your hands.

PWild Pros

  • You can communicate with all the campus wildlife. Those raccoons and skunks might seem pesky to the other freshman plebeians but to you and your fine-tuned wilderness skills, they are your faculty advisors. You know the squirrels just want to chat and get the campus gossip over some Andre by the Norris dumpster.

  • You have already conquered campus natural landmarks like the lakefill. To some freshman, putting a hammock and laying out a blanket to get that perfect fall Instagram might be difficult but not for you, the Northwestern Bear Grylls. Your lame roommate Karen might buckle under the pressure but you, like, hiked a mountain? For like a week? Yeah, it was really hard but now you know how to poop anywhere.

FUP Cons

  • You can only eat Chicago style hot dogs and deep dish pizza. Everyone keeps talking about how good hot cookie bar is but you wouldn’t know because you are constantly cramming a soup of tomato and cheese disguised as a piece of pizza into your mouth. It was also really awkward when you rabidly attacked your PA for saying he liked hot dogs with ketchup on them during an icebreaker.

  • You are too woke. All the other freshman are living in joyful oblivion, shaking their keys with reckless abandon. But you and only you know the socioeconomic dynamics at play and all you can do is shake your head in shame. So instead of tailgating, you have to don your all-black attire and head to a coffee shop in “the city” to read your Marx in peace.

PWild Cons

  • You never really can shake that smell of the wilderness. It lingers and lives in your bed like a welcome week hookup. At first, it was kinda cute and fun that you didn’t shower for eight days, but now your friends are starting to complain and your roommate is contemplating transferring.

  • The entertainments of modern man no longer amuse you. Who cares that Lil Uzi Vert came for Blowout when you have seen the sparkling Lake Superior at sunrise. You can’t even Netflix and chill anymore because you have felt the wind beneath your wings as you scale a midwestern mountain.  

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Confessions of a Former RA

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Freshman Guide: Tailgating