Girls, that’s who.
And I’m reminded of this fact of life everyday that I step on to the campus of the all-women college campus that I attend.
Reactions people have when I tell them that I attend a women’s college:
Anonymous friend: “Those exist still?”
Boyfriend: “It’s a goddamn Menstruation Camp.”
Cynical Middle Aged Man: “There are men in the real world, ya know. How are you going to interact with them in the real world if you don’t interact with them in college?”
I was honestly dreading the fact that I’d be constantly surrounded by a steamy cloud of estrogen for the next four years of my life, but figured that I would eventually get over it, or worse, become a part of it. As I took the twenty minute drive to the college for my first day of classes I felt like I was descending in to a hell where the devil had been overrun by a bunch of overexcited, super empowered young ladies. My gut feeling was so utterly correct.
Looking at the campus and buildings themselves you wouldn’t be able to tell that the school was single-sex, but a closer look makes it more obvious. Instead of keggers and frat parties, students spread around fliers for weekly movie nights, karaoke parties, ice cream socials, “water pong,” and Bingo nights. Every first year student is required to take an introductory course entitled “Women as Empowered Leaders and Learners.” The restrooms on campus are the only restrooms I have ever encountered that have fully stocked and operating tampon dispensers. If there is a school-wide event, there is a Glee soundtrack playing constantly through the speakers. Or Katy Perry’s ‘Firework’. Or the Glee version of Katy Perry’s ‘Firework’. I’m dead serious.
By far the most fantastic situation I have ever encountered at my college is a dance. A dance, you ask? What could be so fantastic about a college dance? Let me tell you. The ladies that attend my college were loaded on to buses and driven three hours to New York’s West Point Military Academy to attend a 1950s-themed sock hop of sorts. Perfect. Comedy genius. The school that might as well have “girl power” printed on every class syllabus was shipping their students off to mingle with some of the finest men in America. Attire was semi-formal and if you planned on wearing a skirt/dress, it was expected to be knee length. A jazz band would provide the evening’s entertainment. We young’uns were expected to dance the night away at our only co-ed event of the school year. Needless to say I didn’t go. I know, I know. How could I have turned such a riveting event down?
Despite these crazy antics, I’m pretty glad I chose to attend the school. The quirky situations we’re all presented with as modern women actually add to the charm of the school itself. It’s pretty cool to not feel the pressure that often comes along with having to impress the opposite sex. (Upon being asked what she likes best about attending an all-women college, one of the classmates in my “Women as Empowered Leaders and Learners” course answered, “Well, it’s really nice not to have to wear makeup every freaking day.” To be honest, it’s kind of refreshing to not hear giggles or see boys shift awkwardly in their seats at the mention of menstrual cycles.