The idea of a "bucket list" - referring to things someone should do before he or she "kicks the bucket" - doesn't just have to apply to older folks. Students, too, can make their own bucket list to make sure they get in every last memory and bit of fun before tossing their caps at graduation. Here are some things to consider adding to yours:
1. Confess a Crush
Scary? Sure. But if you think you'll regret not telling a certain someone how you feel about them before you both part ways after graduating, it's time to go for it. After all, even if it doesn't go well, you won't have to really see them again, right?
2. Take Pictures of People Who Have Made a Difference in Your College Life
When do you think back on your years at school, who mattered most? A certain professor or two? Several friends in particular? Maybe a mentor or administrator? Even if you're convinced that you'll stay in touch with these folks for years, take a picture anyway. You can laugh at how young everyone looked when you're old and gray and reminiscing about all the silly things you did in college.
3. Thank Your Favorite Professor
Chances are one professor, in particular, stands out for the influence he or she had on you during your time in school. Tell them "thanks" before you leave. You can thank them in person, write an email or even leave a small thank-you note (or maybe a gift) for them on graduation day.
4. Try Food You Never Did Somewhere on Campus
If you've never tried a certain kind of food on campus, gather your pride and dig in before you graduate. You'll get a good experience exposing yourself to something new and - you never know - you just might end up liking it.
5. Buy Yourself a Graduation Gift From the Bookstore
Sure, your funds are probably even tighter than normal around graduation time. But pinch your pennies and reward yourself with a gift, no matter how small, from the bookstore. A simple keychain, license plate holder, bumper sticker, business card holder or travel bag will remind you for years to come about one of your greatest accomplishments so far.
6. Thank the People Who Helped Pay Your Way
If scholarships, your parents and/or others helped pay your way through school, make sure to let them know how much you appreciate their support. One suggestion: Include a picture of you in your cap and gown on graduation day in a simple but heartfelt thank-you note.
7. Write Something for the School Paper
You may be shy, you may not think of yourself as a good writer and you may have never written for the paper before. But you'll be graduating soon - meaning you've succeeded at college and have important advice to share with your peers. Ask the editor if you can make a submission, and take a few hours to put something together that passes along your wisdom.
8. Take a Picture of Yourself and Your Room
It may seem silly now, but how fun will it be to look back at how you looked and what your room/apartment looked like five, 10 or 20 years from now? Don't let something that you see every day now slip away with time.
9. Go to a Part of Campus You've Never Been Before
Even if you're at the smallest of schools, head to a corner of campus you've never been before. You just might get a new perspective of how things look and come to appreciate a side of your school that feels brand new just as every other part of it is feeling old.
10. Go to a Sports Event You've Never Been To
Football and basketball games may be all the rage on your campus, but try something new. If it's a gorgeous day, grab some friends and some snacks and go watch a softball or Ultimate Frisbee game. It's a great way to relax and get a new college memory.
11. Go Swimming in the Campus Pool
Many students forget there's a campus pool - or are too self-conscious to use it. But these pools can be huge, gorgeous and a lot of fun. Grab your suit, leave your insecurities behind and go have a ridiculously fun game of Marco Polo with some friends.
12. Have Your Favorite/Most Influential Professor Sign a Book They Wrote
When you think of which professor has been the most brilliant during your time in school, one or two undoubtedly stand out from the rest of the crowd. Have them sign a copy of their latest book before you graduate for a great keepsake you'll cherish for years.
13. Participate in a Campus Tradition
Being tossed into a fountain on your birthday? Going on a midnight excursion with your fellow sorority or fraternity members? Make sure to participate in at least one campus tradition before you graduate for a lasting, irreplaceable memory.
14. Attend an Event on Something You Know Nothing About
You went to college to learn new things, right? So head on over to an event you'd normally never consider attending. You don't have to do anything other than listening and learn.
15. Treat Yourself to a Nice Meal Off Campus
You may be so used to bad muffins in the campus coffee shop and the same dishes in the dining hall that heading off campus for a nice meal seems completely out of the realm of possibility. Chances are, however, that you can ask around and find a super yummy, affordable place that will provide you with a great meal and a great memory.
16. Vote in Student Government Elections
OK, sure, you may have thought they were boring or unimportant before. But now that you're graduating, you have a pretty serious responsibility to leave behind a strong legacy and support system for the classes that will follow you. Honor them by voting for student leaders who you think will maintain the standards other students set for you when you first arrived on campus.
17. Go to a Professional Sports Game Off Campus
If you live in a big city and have never been to a professional sports game, now is the time to go! After all, how silly would you feel if you had to confess, for years and years after you graduate, that even though you lived in, say, Boston for 4 years, you never saw a Red Sox game? Grab some friends and head out.
18. Go to a Cultural Event in Town
Even if you live in what you consider to be the smallest of small towns, there's a culture there that can't be replaced -- and that you'll probably miss once you're gone. Go to a poetry slam, a performance, a county fair or anything else being put on in town and absorb all you can before you move somewhere new.
19. Go to a Museum in Town
You never know what history your college town has to offer. Challenge yourself to learn a little more before you graduate by hitting a museum in town. It could be an art museum, a history museum, or even something that speaks to the unique identity of your city. Even better: Use your student discount for admission.
20. Volunteer Off Campus
Even if you don't interact with people off campus all that much, the community that surrounds your school has helped make your experience possible. Give back a little by volunteering for a one-day, one-month, one-semester, or one-year commitment to an off-campus organization that supports your own values and priorities, too.
21. Do Something That Scares You
If you look back at your college years and realize you played it safe, you might not be pushing yourself out of your comfort zone enough. Take a deep breath and challenge yourself to try something new and scary. Even if you regret it, you'll learn something about yourself.