College Student Etiquette

Being a college student can be the time of your life, but be careful you don’t develop some bad habits. Modern Manners Guy has 3 tips for proper etiquette in college, and beyond.

Richie Frieman
4-minute read
Episode #193

I am well aware that college is not easy (unless you are Division 1 basketball or football player, in which case it’s pretty much like an episode of Entourage 24/7). But while in school, sometimes we’d much rather blow off class and take a spontaneous road trip to Atlantic City from College Park, Maryland at 2AM even though we have a test the next day (not that I know anyone who did that…). So my message to my college friends is this: When you are considering doing something you know is a bad idea, take a step back and reevaluate the situation. You can’t play the “I’m just a kid” card, and the “I know what I’m doing” card at the same time. You are not too cool for school – trust me. You have no idea how far off you are.

Tip #2 – Relationships

I have some teenage and college-age relatives in my family who enjoy updating me on their hard-partying lives, while I wince in pain and embarrassment. From bragging about how much they drank in one night, to who they’re dating (for now), there’s never a dull moment when it comes to college life relationships. Everything is documented on social media, by the minute. That’s all fine and good, until you consider that burning through relationships at warp speed – both romantic and casual – will only fuel bad manners habits that will leave you clueless in the real world. If you can’t value real relationships when you are in college, don’t think you will grasp it once the diploma is handed to you. 

Constantly flipping through random relationships leads to a number of defective social skills that are hard to shake. I’m not saying that every single friend you make in class or every random late night hook-up at the Delta Beta Whocarezuh house is going to be in your life forever. Even if you treat college as your own personal playground, that’s your prerogative, but the point here is that properly handling social relationships in college will most likely result in how you handle them outside college as well.

When you come across someone in college that you welcome into your social life, treat them with respect. It sounds old-school but you have no idea how true that is. You don’t have to be in love or be best friends—just don’t be a jerk. Not only will you risk running into them later in life (which you will, trust me, it’s a small world) but if you don’t respect those around you, and feel that you are above everyone else, the real world will beat you to a bloody pulp.