Every college hookup you’ll have in your freshman year

Weekly dating advice with Penny Franklin


In the spirit of fresh starts and new beginnings, here’s a round up of stories from freshman year. Think of it as a highlight reel of all the awkward dating encounters you’ll experience before you become a sophomore. If you’re already a sophomore (or more), enjoy the walk down memory lane to the days of your youth.

(The following stories are all true. They’re all in the first person, but have either happened to me, my friends, or people I stopped talking to the second I realized I wasn’t obligated to be friends with everyone who ever smiled at me). 

First ever college kiss

My first ever college kiss happened in a frat basement, 20 minutes into a game of beer pong. I was making my partner drink for me, because of course I was. I was (/am) also TERRIBLE at beer pong, to the point that he bet me if I didn’t make the next shot I’d have to kiss him. I missed that shot. He kissed me. I left shortly after and never saw him again.

Hope he’s doin’ well.


If you don’t know what a dance floor make out is, you’ve probably at least experienced one. If not, you probably will soon. If you don’t – you’re honestly better off than all of us. Let me know what it’s like not having mono, because I’ve had it continuously since setting foot on campus.

Freshman year I was certain there was no way in HELL I was going to let anyone knew how many times a day I cried over my dumb ex-boyfriend. Naturally, the best way of convincing everyone how much fun I was having was to kiss EVERYONE I PHYSICALLY COULD. Also, I temporarily forgot the word “no” existed.

A typical night out for me involved waltzing into a frat basement like I was graceful and desirable and not at all like my feet were so stuck to the disgusting ground it took physical effort to take each step. I would get a drink, start dancing, and make eye contact with some vague dude-like-shape for about 10 seconds before he approached me. Thirty seconds of awkward dancing/grinding/hugging(?) later and I’d get bored and kiss them for anywhere from one to 10 minutes. Often I didn’t really enjoy it, but I DEFINITELY enjoyed the validation of having a dude make out with me. My ex boyfriend who went to school on the other coast of the country would totally be jealous if he knew. (I texted him, he wasn’t)

The moral of this story is there are roughly 30 “men” on this campus with whom I have made out and I frankly have zero idea who they are. No names or faces were stored in my memory, and that’s the way I like it.

The class hookup

Picture your first day of class. It was about a week and a half ago, so I know you remember it. You walked in, sat down, looked around, and immediately targeted the cutest human in the room. If you’re anything like me you’ll spend the next two months STARING at him/her/them and wondering how to possibly start a conversation.

One night it will happen for you – you’ll be out and about and then you’ll see them. In your alcohol/drug/happiness (?) induced high you’ll march right up and say “HI. You’re in my class.”

In my case, he looked startled at having a small stranger accost him in this manner, but said “uh yeah, I think. Which class?” After a few minutes of awkward conversation about the professor we shared I just HAPPENED to trip onto him because some douche pushed passed me. Ugh so rude right? It was totally fine though, because then we had made physical contact, and the rest was history.

After a drunken stumble back to the quad he went down on me for a frankly uncomfortable few minutes before I realized I had no desire to reciprocate, made that clear, and fled to the safety of my own room. Fortunately, he didn’t make a fuss. Unfortunately, we still had half a semester left of class together. It was spent avoiding eye contact. I never day-dreamed (about him) again.

The awkward hall hook up

Is there anything more emotionally charged than move-in day freshman year? What could be better than seeing someone cute on your hall, and what worse than having your dad introduce himself to them?

The only scientific way to move past the shame of your father is to seduce that cute hallmate. I promise. There’s been research to back this up.

We pregame together, being oh so subtle and hiding the sound of clinking bottles under whatever song we were playing VERY loudly (It was Blurred Lines). Our RA doesn’t catch us because our RA was off drunk with her own friends and talking about how innocent and full of hope we seemed. She hadn’t noticed the daily crying apparently.

We all went out to parties in a pack of about 50, traversing the streets like the menaces to society we thought we were. One separation, three hours, and countless cups of questionable red liquid later and he found me struggling to unlock the door to my room. It was definitely my key’s fault, and totally not my .25 BAC. He was there though, my tall handsome neighbor, and HE still had control over basic motor function. Like all true heroes, after unlocking my door he lifted me up and carried me over the threshold before kneeling to the ground, proposing, and abstaining from all physical contact until the moment of our holy matrimony. Just kidding, we fooled around for half an hour until my roommate walked in on us with her own conquest in tow. The next morning a “text if you need the room” system was put in place and strictly adhered to for the rest of the year.

We remained friends, in that we continued to say “sup” as we passed each other in our towels on the way to and from the bathrooms/on locust rushing to a midterm/across the bar at smokes – just two ships, passing in the night that is our college experience.

The repeat hook up that I kept around for way too long

Amazingly I made it to November without dying of the flu/mono/writing seminar related injuries. Even more amazingly, my “friend” I had been lightly swooning over came back from thanksgiving break having successfully completed a turkey dump. It was my Time To Shine™ and I knew it. Our first hook up was the day before my Oceanography (lol) midterm. I made him cuddle with me because I was “stressed.” I am NOTHING if not smooth.

We didn’t talk over winter break, then returned and immediately starting hooking up every Thursday-Sunday night. After two weeks it became clear that I wanted something more and he didn’t. I, now a mature and responsible second semester freshman, said “that’s fine, then we’re just going to be friends, because I don’t want anything casual.” That resolve lasted approximately five wonderful days of me being proud of myself, until I got drunk the following weekend.

The perfect one night stand

End of finals + my birthday + the frat of my ex-fling + beerpong partners + actual conversation + pictures of pets + my roommate being “out of town” = the perfect last hurrah of a whirlwind of boys, booze, and B’s (at best).

UPenn: Penn