Student Life

Your CSU ‘Buc’ket List 

By Hanah Kerrigan | April 17, 2023

We all say we’re going to go out and do more. We all say we have things that we want to do while we’re at college – but have we spent the time to write it down and commit to it? This thought leads to something that I’m surprised most of us don’t already have: a college bucket list. 

A college bucket list is exactly like it sounds – a bucket list to complete while attending college. According to The Wall Street Journal’s Ben Zimmer in his article “The Origins of ‘Bucket List,’” the term (with its modern meaning and when properly used in context) likely originated from the screenwriter for the movie “The Bucket List,” Justin Zackham.  

While there were already people in the world using the idea, Zackham’s film, starting Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, went on to popularize the term. This spread of the idea of a bucket list created the inspiration for many to create their own, and, as it grew, even gave way to subcategories of lists (people create them for vacation, before reaching certain milestones in their lives to create the big one, and some even create them for work). 

Colleges are no exception to this idea. Attending college is not only one of the highlights of your academic life, but of nearly every part of your life. Here, you meet lifelong friends, find incredible mentors, and maybe even start dating the person you’ll marry one day. College is always full of plenty of some of the most exciting happenings and activities, making it easy to decide what you may want to do. There are many blogs that have created ideas and some schools may even have list ideas for you too (University of Cumberland’s is 65 ideas long)! There’s even a book that’s been written on this (The College Bucket List: 101 Fun, Unforgettable and Maybe Even Life-Changing Things to Do Before Graduation Day by Kourtney Jason). 

At a college like Charleston Southern University, there are always lots of fun events going on. Being in the Charleston area also provides plenty of activities for the average college student to try. There should be nothing stopping you from going out and checking things off your bucket list, save yourself! Whether you already have one in mind or not, here are many of the things CSU students and faculty, and many bucket-list devoted websites and blogs, have agreed should be on your CSU/College Bucket List! 

  1. Take a picture with our school mascot, Bucky! If you don’t have one by now, the rest of this bucket list is definitely for you and will help you get more involved in the school. 
  1. Attend a sports event (AND TAILGATE). This is another great place to snap a pic with Bucky! 
  1. Attend as many Sweet 16 events as possible – especially the formal and fair after spring finals. 
  1. Join (or even create) a club or group on campus! 
  1. Write a letter to your future self to open on graduation day. Where would you like to see yourself go now? Has anything changed since you wrote it? 
  1. Apply to your dream internship (before you graduate) and/or job (before the end of your senior year). 
  1. Go to a Career Fair/Expo (to help you get that dream internship or job!). 
  1. Picnic at the Reflection Pond, especially right before sunset to get a great view. 
  1. A Dr. Costin and CSU worship team favorite: Go to the dining hall after Chapel on Wednesday for fried chicken. 
  1. Pick one class to take just for fun (what’s one extracurricular that sounds super interesting even if you don’t feel you’ll do great at it?) 
  1. Participate at an open mic night. Whether it’s the Sefer Literary Magazine monthly mic nights, or one in Charleston, there are always mic nights going on in the area! 
  1. Go to an arts event on campus: band concerts, vocal performances; there’s even an annual spring musical open that ANYONE can audition for (yet another thing you should do while you’re at CSU)! 
  1. Spot an alligator on campus. Don’t deliberately spend time searching though – you can get in trouble by walking around the Reflection Pond just to look for one. We’ve checked. 
  1. Go to the beach; we’re less than an hour away from most major beaches! 
  1. Do a random (and maybe even anonymous) act of kindness for a professor or student. 
  1. Go to a local concert, festival, or event. 
  1. Learn a new language – and NOT just from the required classes. 
  1. Take advantage of student ID discounts. More places offer student discounts than you think! 
  1. Change your hairstyle (and maybe even color). 
  1. Visit the restaurants on University Boulevard. Have lunch with friends at Willie Jewells Old School BBQ, plan a date at Come Back Shack (a true CSU favorite), or take a break during your 1 a.m. study break to go to Cookout; there are so many possibilities just across or down the road from campus. 
  1. Go to Chapel – without getting the credit for it – at least once. 
  1. Pick one person from a class every semester to become friends with. If you spend all four years here, by the end, you’ll have made nearly 10 new friends! 
  1. Get your class ring OR buy a brick!*  
    * I say either/or because while the experience of the ceremony and the constant reminder that will be with you in your jewelry/shadow box is priceless, not everyone can afford a class ring. The commemorative bricks that circle the Reflection Pond are just as special and, weather damage or other hazards aside, are a little more permanent than a ring can be. 
  1. Plan a spring break trip with friends. 
  1. And, of course, GRADUATE! 

These are just a few ideas to get your own started. As a CSU student, you’re surrounded by some of the most incredible and friendly students and professors on campus. There’s always a game, an event, or something fun happening on campus. Even if in high school you weren’t the biggest event-goer in school events, being a member of CSU, it’s easy to want to participate in school activities, make friends, and check some items off of your bucket! 

Hanah Kerrigan is a junior English major and is a spring 2023 intern with the Office of Marketing & Communication.

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