You Know You Go to Emerson College When

Emerson College has a reputation. We are supposedly a school of hipsters who smoke and are gay, and we study things that might not be applicable job wise in the future. And honestly, this can be true quite. I don’t see this as a negative stereotype. So, here are ten more ways that you can be sure you go to Emerson!

1. You automatically assume people are queer right off the bat

Animated picture with text: "Hey wait, you're straight?"

Emerson has a large and vibrant queer population. I was once in the dining hall and someone said they were straight. The whole room got silent and someone even dropped a plate. While this doesn’t mean there are no straight people at Emerson, but I have found it safer to just assume the other way around until told otherwise.


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2. Breathing in cigarette smoke does not even phase you anymore

Just as a forewarning to any smokers, I do not smoke. Walking past Whiskey Saigon during the day freshman year used to bother me, but after a whole year here, I don’t even notice it. At this point, it has become a staple and is something that is uniquely Emerson.

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3. You are in so many organizations you can’t even think straight

Emerson students like to join a million orgs and clubs and still work and try to do their homework and sleep. Sometimes it works for people and sometimes it really, really does not work. But at least your resume will be miles long.

4. You are passionate about politics and have strong opinions

A young adult leaving a voting booth


Emerson students are opinionated about many things and are not afraid to voice these opinions. The political sphere is no different. We are fairly solid in our ideas and points and are usually not afraid to bring it up in conversation.

5. You are a hipster, but you hate being called a hipster

Meme with text: "Why did the hipster wear a scarf in the summer? He was cold before it was cool."

According to the Urban Dictionary, “Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20s and 30s that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter.” Does that describe anyone you know? Everyone you know? Many Emerson students are hipsters, but will deny to the death that they are hipsters because part of being a hipster is saying you aren’t one.


6. You hear these bizarre excuses for work not being done

Excuses are typical to every school, but at Emerson, these excuses can be on a whole new level. There are people writing books and directing movies and starring in movies. People are in bands and people are “commuting” between here and New York City. With all that, there are no typical answers to the question of why an assignment is turned in late, such as how someone was at the Oscars, or someone was re-writing a Shakespearean play.

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7. You complain about the ten minute walk to the Paramount building 

Sure, in comparison to other schools with large campuses, a five minute walk is nothing. But, to Emerson students, you would think that Paramount is on a different continent. And in the rain, you might as well just stay home.

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8. You forget what math even is

When you go to a restaurant and try to figure out the tip, you are met with a sea of blank stares, myself included. It is like all my math classes from all my schooling left my body the second I walked on campus.


9. You know exactly what you want to do in life

Majors at Emerson are fairly specific, so to go there, you have to know what you want to do. But, as time goes on, what you want to do can shift, or it can become even more specific. While students at other schools are still trying to declare a major, Emerson students are planning their whole life ten years ahead, and had practically declared their major when they were in high school.

10. When you leave the “Emerson Bubble”, you feel out of place

Girl resting while inside a bubble


When you head home for break, you feel strangely out of place, because you are used to the Emerson way of life, which can be an anomaly compared to other schools or cities. Here at Emerson, we are more free to be ourselves and are pursuing what we want and other places can feel more restrictive. But, who knows, maybe you can bring your own little “Emerson Bubble” home with you?

Did we miss an Emerson trait? Tell us in the comments!