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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Building a college bucket list

Graphic+by+Kaitlyn+Patterson+20.
Graphic by Kaitlyn Patterson ’20.

Suggestions from an alum at VisitPhilly.com


In college, we sometimes halt our busy day-to-day schedules and ponder just how fleeting it all is. Whether we want to come to terms with it or not, our time on the Saint Joseph’s University campus will sadly come to an end. But fear not, there’s a way to make sure that we do everything we want to do during our time here: a bucket list.

College bucket lists are a way for students to map out the most important things they want to do, no matter how outlandish they may seem, and finish them before graduation. Not surprisingly, given how fast time seems to move during undergraduate years, many college students create bucket lists full of things they want to do on campus or in their city.

Philadelphia is brimming with possibility and adventure for students like us, especially those coming from other parts of the country. In other words, a “Philly Bucket List” is essential.

Dan Wisniewski ’08, is currently the senior editor of digital content at VisitPhilly.com. He has some advice for students who are in Philly for college.

“The thing I would stress to any student is don’t be afraid to get out and explore stuff that you haven’t done before, because that’ll be the most fun and interesting,” Wisniewski said. “Go have fun doing things you wouldn’t do elsewhere. Philadelphia is a huge city, so you should take advantage of all it has to offer while you can.”

Wisniewski, who never had a Philly bucket list of his own while in college due to the city’s close proximity to his home, used his expertise and knowledge of the city to compile a bucket list of ideas, some obvious and some not, that he thinks all students should experience during their time here.

1. Historic District

The Historic District of Philadelphia boasts classic historical attractions such as the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, but there’s much more to see. Wisniewski mentioned the Portrait Gallery in the Second Bank of the U.S., the National Museum of American Jewish History and the Museum of the American Revolution as other important attractions to add.

2. Try new food

Wisniewski noted that “one of the most fun parts of living [in Philadelphia]” is the wide variety of food from the many different cultures that inhabit the city. He urges students in Philly to try food that they have never tried before and may not experience otherwise.

3. Art scene

The art scene in Philadelphia is both “world class” and “good for students trying to mind budgets,” according to Wisniewski. Museums like the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Barnes Foundation both have certain days that are either discounted, “pay what you wish” or free.

4. Walk Everywhere

It may seem like a strange addition to the list, but wandering around the city by foot is one of the best ways to experience it, according to Wisniewski.

“Anyone can take the train into the city and wander around. That’s the most fun: finding cool buildings and secret alleyways,” Wisniewski said.

5. Performance art

Philadelphia is home to many live music venues for performance arts. There are unique performances at the Painted Bride Art Center and FringeArts, which Wisniewski notes is fun for those who haven’t experienced performance art before.

6. Get outdoors

Within the city and just beyond it, there is a multitude of things to do outdoors to help students get out of their stuffy dorm rooms after a long day of studying. For instance, Wisniewski mentioned that students should visit Fairmount Park and the strip of the Delaware River where Spruce Street Harbor Park is located.

7. Lesser visited attractions

Wisniewski’s final recommendation for a Philly bucket list is a pitch for students to check out lesser-known attractions that are unique to Philadelphia.

“Not many cities have something like Eastern State Penitentiary, it’s a very interesting place that doesn’t exist elsewhere,” Wisniewski said. “Same thing with the Mütter Museum, that collection is so bizarre and fun to check out.”

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