Date Ideas for College Students

By: Jena Slater

Have you really wanted to go on a quality date but you cannot afford a five-star restaurant? I have a few date ideas for you. Both date ideas require spending money and time. Sometimes a simple date night is all a girl needs after a long day of classes. I am going to focus on giving insight on how to add your personal touch to date ideas.

I have customized these date ideas to reflect my personal lifestyle which is simple with a hint of country, to give you a few examples.

When in doubt take your date on a picnic. The nice thing about picnics are they can become as simple or fancy as your heart desires. This can also be a very simple date where you do not have to spend big bucks to impress your date. A few things to thing about when planning for a picnic are: weather, time of day, perfect location, food, and drinks.

Checking the weather in case the location needs to be moved indoors. You may not want to get soaked if it’s raining or get blown away if it is windy. If you two have been dating for a while or get lost in the moment and feel a spark, then a romantic kiss in the rain may not hurt.

Finding and ideal location is equally important. My recommendations are going to a local park or college campus for a picnic. A few other things to think about when choosing your perfect location for your picnic are: green grass, trees, fountains, benches and tables. Any of these features can make for a romantic picnic.

Picnics can be simple as seen in the movies but they can also be modernized too. When I think of a traditional picnic I envision someone bringing a blanket to lay on the ground along with something to eat and drink while we hang out.

They are convenient since they can take place at any time. Early mornings are great if you both like to get up early and watch the sunrise. Late morning through midafternoons are wonderful if you prefer a midday picnic. Evenings are especially nice if you enjoy watching the sunset and looking at the stars. Picnics with food, drinks, and a blanket to sit on while watching the sunset can be the perfect way to end your evening. They are also good dates for girls who prefer the simpler things in life.

Food and drinks are an essential part of a picnic. You can ask what their favorite kind of lunch meat or jelly they prefer and make sandwiches to go along with their favorite soda. You can buy lunchmeat or peanut butter and jelly and make sandwiches yourself. Then, carefully place them in a cooler or backpack paying careful attention to making sure the bread does not get smashed. Also, taking into consideration how long it will be before it is time to eat so you can store them properly. An additional option is going to a local sandwich shop or Subway and ordering your favorite sandwiches. Additionally, you can invite your date to grab sandwiches with you and order them to go.

You can pull this off by telling asking your date to go on a picnic with you. Or you can ask them on a spontaneous date but keep the location a surprise so their anticipation builds up. Finally, you can either began your date immediately with a picnic or you might take a romantic walk to lead into your picnic. Once you have found the perfect spot, start unpacking your blanket and lay it on the ground to give you a place to sit down. Then unpack your food and drinks and enjoy your date.

My second suggestion is a customized movie night which I chose to experiment with. I gave this stay at home date night a modern and romantic twist. My date was having a particularly rough day since nothing was going as he anticipated. Especially when he was trying to glue his car made of construction gingerbread with frosting but it kept falling apart. After getting out of class and checking the date and time he ask me if I would like to have a movie night after he got out of his last class. I agreed.

From previously hanging out some outside of class, I knew what his favorite pizza toppings are. Recently I heard about flameless, battery operated, candles and already wanted to get some for where I live. I decided a movie night with pizza and a few flameless candles would be the perfect date night. I let my date pick the movie since I figured it would help cheer him up. I went to Dollar General and purchased a package of battery operated remote control candles since I felt they would add a relaxing element to this movie night.

I ordered a Domino’s pizza with his and hers toppings. Then, he texted me saying he was about to go and drop off his stuff before heading over. After looking around my residence I found enough batteries for two candles. I texted him to see if he might have any spare batteries. He offered to pick some up on his way over. I set two mason jars out and the pizza showed up.

Next, my date showed up and I ask him if he could take the batteries out of an extra control. He called me and I came to get the batteries and put them in the remaining candles then used the remote and turned all the candles on. I walked over to where he was waiting patiently and flipped off the over powering overhead light.

Finally, we walked into my living room where there was a flameless candle light pizza dinner with mason jars, we drank Dr. Pepper from, while watching the movie he brought. His expression when he saw how I gave a movie night a modern and romantic twist was priceless. Realizing I successfully pulled off the perfect date night and instantly turned his day around made this date night perfect. Seeing his surprised face made it all worth it in the end.

Here is a short tidbit about me for anyone who may not know me:

I was born in Texas and after I was a year old we moved to New Mexico. Then, we moved to another part of New Mexico after several years. I have lived on a ranch for approximately 19-years of my life aside from when I am attending Eastern New Mexico University(ENMU) where I study Communications with an emphasis in Journalism. Many of my dating ideas reflect my country background.


Sam’s Scholarly Stages

By: Samantha Smith

As a freshman at ENMU my thoughts about college differed greatly from what they are now.  That year, I spent lots of nights out with friends, came home late and got just a few hours of sleep before my morning classes, and took daily afternoon naps. Though I had A’s in all of my classes, never missed a day of rodeo practice, and had great relationships with all of my friends, my freshman ways would suddenly end.

Sophomore year held many changes for me, many of which I was unprepared to handle at the time. After summer break I came back to school expecting everything to be the same and was surprised to find out that it was not. My older sister, Taylor, had graduated at the end of my freshman year. I was 30 hours from home and for the first time I was without family. Though I had moved in with a very close friend of mine and I never did experience home-sickness, I missed my sister and I missed the way things were before. Late nights out with friends vanished quickly, my success in the rodeo arena dwindled away, and though it had been a year already, I was still struggling with the loss of my dog. During the rodeo season, I made friends with Kellie and Rylee, two girls from other schools that competed with me, and their friendships made all the difference in the world. By the end of the first semester, I realized I hadn’t been in Portales on the weekend since our college rodeo the second week of September. At first, I was surprised at my absence and immediately after I felt like I had missed part of the college experience by leaving town at every opportunity. Looking back just over a year later, I wouldn’t change one decision I made, as I got to experience so many things that for others is only a dream.

Second semester as a sophomore, things changed for me again after my parents gave me a puppy for Christmas. This resulting in me moving to another friend’s house where I would stay until my junior year. Still missing having Taylor at school, I would make the ten-hour drive one-way to my parents Arizona house each weekend I could get away. Turns out, by the time you’re in your fourth semester of college you start doing whatever it takes to avoid Friday classes, and I was lucky enough to be able to avoid Monday, Wednesday, Fridays all together. Sophomore year was definitely no freshman year, but it did teach me a lot of life lessons that will follow me through life.

Now, as a junior, things have changed for me once again. As I sit in my room watching Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix and writing this article at 3 a.m., I am reminiscing on the memories I have made thus far. As much as I enjoyed the majority of my classes freshman and sophomore year, I am finally into upper-division classes focused on my major. Now that I am in my practicum, I am able to practice real-life skills focused towards my future career. Classes are harder and require more time, but the skills learnt over the past two years are finally being put to use. I still compete at the college rodeos, I still maintain great grades, and I still get to spend time with friends. Perhaps my favorite part of this year is that my younger sister, Kennedy, has now joined me at ENMU. Kennedy has a one-of-a-kind personality, and living with her is full of laughs.

Even though I still have a year to go, I feel like I have gained everything I could ever need to survive in real life thanks to college. College has taught me not to take things to heart, that there is always room for improvement, that mistakes happen, and that moderation and balance are the keys to a healthy life. Here’s hoping I’m almost ready for the road that lies ahead of me.