Orlando 101: Welcome to Orlando Weekly's college guide 

  • Photo by Chris Tobar Rodriguez

“Hello, babies. Welcome to Earth. It’s hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It’s round and wet and crowded. At the outside, babies, you’ve got about a hundred years here. There’s only one rule that I know of, babies – God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.”

In Kurt Vonnegut’s genius novel God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, one of the book’s characters makes this speech to a couple of babies he’s baptizing. It’s a sort of a short, sweet orientation speech for life. While you, college students, are not babies, you are being baptized into a strange new world when you enter college – there’s a whole new set of expectations and responsibilities and rules you’ve got to follow when you get there, and sometimes it does sort of feel like you’re a baby trying to navigate a round, wet, crowded world you’ve hardly had a chance to acquaint yourself with.

Just as Vonnegut’s character reminds those babies in his novel, your time in college is finite – it’s going to go quickly, and you ought to make the most of it while you’re here.

We hope that this guide we’ve put together for you helps you do just that. In it, we’ve compiled advice from your fellow college students about traveling abroad, landing internships, getting over your insecurities during freshman year and more. We’ve also compiled listings of the best events, club nights and college deals we could find, and we’ve paired that with a listing of some of our favorite bars in town. We encourage you to get out there and explore. And though you’re not babies, we do hope you’ll take Vonnegut’s excellent advice, which we think transcends all ages: Be kind. Life’s too short to be a douchebag.

Orlando 101 was written almost entirely by three college students: Lauren Ball (Lipscomb University), Stephanie Garcia (Rollins College) and Kaleb Quast (University of Central Florida). They had just a little bit of help from Orlando Weekly’s editor, Erin Sullivan.

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