Much like those teen movies which claim to take place in high school, there are discrepancies between college in real life and college on screen. Aside from the actors playing freshmen who are clearly in their 30s, there are also a few subtle differences from actual college life. In my experience, here are areas debunked with college in real life vs. college in movies.
1. Acapella Feuds & Rivalries Are A Thing
This myth definitely grew with the rise of the Pitch Perfect franchise and led many to believe that they were going to see groups like The Treblemakers on campus. In reality, your college may have an acapalla group or club, but the most elaborate production would be the end of the season recital. I was not faced with groups of people covering Pitbull songs while I walked away campus and definitely was not approached to be a Bella.
2. Competitions Will Always Be Televised
From cheer to the big football game, college in movies made me believe that every sporting event was going to be the spotlight of the whole town. My campus during undergrad didn’t even have a football team and I am not even sure if college cheer is still a thing. Yes, there are major sporting events at certain colleges but even in those instances, not every will be broadcast.
3. Prepare To Rage Every.Single.Weekend
In movies college is where the nerdy kid first tries alcohol and loosens up beyond control or where frat guys run around with togas searching for the next keg. College in real life paints a slightly different picture. Although there is a significant increase in amount of “ragers” compared to high school, partying is not some sort of requirement as the movies paint it to be. There are those who engage in all that jello shots have to offer and there are those who skip parties altogether. Even if there is a massive party being thrown on campus, it will not be a school-wide event as colleges in movies would lead you to believe.
4. Stoners Will Lurk Around Every Corner
The hippy persona is often attributed to the college stoner who spends their time laying on the campus lawn and telling everyone to mellow out. As with anything that one indulges with, stoners are around campus, but they are definitely not showcased like in movies. This is an area that I have zero experience with in college in real life, but I can attest to the fact that they were not spotlighted at all.
5. The Super Involved Dean
For some reason in movies, the dean of the college takes on an omnipresent nature. They know what is going on with all the trouble makers on campus and are seen at every major event. In real life, you are lucky if you even know the dean’s name at your college. They are definitely not as accessible as they are presented in movies and do not have enough free time to casually attend every basketball game.
6. Classes Don’t Take Up Too Much Time
In movie college, most of the film is spent fundraising to save the sorority house or practicing for Nationals instead of actually being inside the classroom. Everyone has so much time on their hands that they can literally focus on all their extracurricular activities while they somehow get an education. As we all can confirm, class takes up all your time. Whether it is attending lecture, studying, or having group project meet ups there is always something going on academically. Those who are actually able to pull off club memberships in college spend a lot of time adjusting schedules and losing sleep.
College in real life is much more work but maybe you’ll be an extra in movie college one day! What do you think of college in the movies and real life? Tell us in the comments!
Featured Image Source: https://danbrenner.wordpress.com/2012/11/27/black-friday-deals-and-michigan-football/
Rebecca was born in Hayward, CA and still resides there today. She received her BA in English Creative Writing from San Francisco State University and is the first in her family to graduate from university. She is a Poetry student in the MFA program at Saint Mary’s College of California and is furthering her involvement in the literary community. In her spare time, she likes to lose her voice at Giants games, read Young Adult novels, make lists, and aims to cross become a writer off it.