With the boom of legal pot came an increasing interest to start a new life in Colorado. This appeal affected more than established adults, but graduating seniors seeking their “next step” too. As a result, hundreds of out-of-staters walk the streets of CSU, making for a well-rounded student body. After spending a few weeks on campus, I think most Rams can agree you’re always running into these 10 people during your time at CSU.
Hippies and Hipsters
I’ll start with the hippy/hipster analogy as this stereotype seems to be the most popular. You’ll see it all in Foco, from the original hippie to a more modernized version known as the hipster. A few years into any degree at CSU and you’ll likely befriend a few of each.
Then we have athletes. Always easy to find because they’re in the same spots: gym, library, on their way to practice, outside Parmelee (where majority who are on scholarship live), in the dining halls or, if you’re lucky, in one of your classes. I say this because they make awesome class buddies. Most athletes miss as many days for games as I do from laziness so being able to catch one another up is a life-saver on both ends.
After hipsters I’d say the next most popular face at CSU is the outdoor enthusiast. Matter of fact, sometimes the two go hand-in-hand. Between Horsetooth, the Poudre Canyon and the Arapahoe Bend Natural Area there are dozens of trails to hike and rocks to climb. There are even a few lakes to boat, swim and fish in.
Muscle Car Owners
This next one is somewhat surprising, or at least it was for me. There are tons of muscle car enthusiasts at CSU. I would say the most popular make and model is the Dodge Challenger, but there are a few other popular ones. You’ll hear them out racing in the streets on Friday and Saturday nights.
Study Abroad Students
The extensive study abroad program at CSU was a big contributor in my decision to come here. You can choose from dozens of colleges around the world to spend a semester, and it’s affordable. Plus, say you’re interested in a university that’s not supported in the program, you can apply anyway and they’ll make special arrangements just for you! With that said, there are hundreds of students coming to CSU every year to enjoy the same experience. Chances are you’ll meet a few of them.
We also have a growing flood of health-conscious individuals here at CSU. I often see this go together with the hippie/hipster vibe too. There are gluten-free, dairy-free, meat-free, soy-free eaters shaping the restaurant industry in Foco. More menus are including healthier options than in the past, marketing to a new generation of eaters.
CSU has one of the best art programs in the state, part of which is funded by New Belgium Brewing. My favorite part about the art community on campus is that most artists aren’t studying art at all. They’re aspiring geologists, or doctors, or writers, or teachers, but they still love, appreciate and create art like they’re getting credit for it.
Greek life at CSU is almost unnoticeable, especially the frats. Currently less than five percent of students are affiliated. Like many other schools in Colorado, joining an academic fraternity will likely get you more respect than joining a social one will. That said, you’ll still bump into a sorority girl every once and awhile — or maybe you’ll have class with one. Don’t worry it’s actually kind of fun, like watching an exotic animal outside its natural habitat.
Fort Collins Natives
Although Fort Collins locals are harder to come by these days, you’ll meet a few in your years at CSU. I was lucky enough to have one as a suitemate freshman year. She knew where the best restaurants, parties, study spots and shopping districts were. It was nice having a living guidebook for my first few semesters on campus.
This last one I can’t put in the people category, but I think it’s important to mention. Fort Collins has the friendliest squirrels I’ve ever met. They’ll come up and sit with you in the park or while you wait for a bus. If I wasn’t slightly intimidated I probably could have touched several by now.
There are so many different cultures and personalities at CSU that make it the diverse university we know and love today. Did I forget a big group? Mention it in the comments below!