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Hints to Freshmen

Within the Co-Ed Codes handed out to the incoming freshmen, there was a section that gave "Hints to Freshmen" on how to fit in at Oregon State. 

Such advice made visible the unspoken social rules that everyone on campus, women and men alike, were supposed to follow.

If one didn't follow these hints, it was strongly implied that you would be in danger of becoming a social outcast, with negative effects on one's college experience and education.


The "Hints to Freshmen" section was followed by a guide to campus jargon, called the "Rook Dictionary," which was a tongue-in-cheek set of definitions that all freshmen were encouraged to know.

Hints to Freshmen

  • BEAVER footers are Sportsmen in the true sense of the word. Courtesy to our opponents is practice of many years’ standing.
  • “CARRY ME BACK TO OSC," the Alma Mater, is the song which we always rise to sing. 
  • DON'T think you're fooling the “prof” if you don't do your work; he's not the one that's losing out.
  • BE a loyal freshman--play the game and do what is expected of you.
  • ATTEND all athletic contests and class meetings.
  • NO smoking is allowed on the campus.
  • DON'T begin cutting classes. It doesn't pay. 
  • MAKE activity your objective; stick to it.
  • GO to the library to study--not to converse with your friends.
  • BE SURE to have a pair of comfortable shoes for freshman week. There is too much walking around to try to break in a new pair.
  • DON’T polish apples too conspicuously--you’ll earn the dislike of both teachers and fellow students.
  • BE DEMOCRATIC--Oregon State is no place for snobs. Act natural.
  • COUNT those candy bars; too many students gain ten pounds before they know it.
  • DON'T act blasé at the freshman mix--it doesn’t go over so big.
  • IF you expect to join a sorority, bring an informal white dress to wear at pledging.
  • SADDLE SHOES, skirts and sweaters are popular among Oregon State co-eds; and hats, gloves, and high heeled shoes are rarely seen on the campus.
  • DON'T start going steady with the first man you meet-- remember there are twice as many men as women on the campus.
  • LAST, but not least, write home often. Don't forget the folks at home.


  • ASOSC, rooks, seniors, men, women and the student body prexy tangled in a horrible mess.  Center of wire pulling activities for which a large office has been provided.


  • APPLE POLISHING, the technique used in getting the C plus raised to a B minus. Don't neglect the faculty, y'know, even though they do try to run things.
  • BLIND DATE, the guy who sticks his head in the lion's mouth may lose it, but he doesn't have ln pay for the privilege, too.
  • BULL SESSION, how to run the world, be lucky in love, be a super kibìtzer, or make millions, in ten compact easy lessons.
  • CITIZENSHIP, expression of the faculty that it is a good thing to know nothing about everything that exists, rather than less than nothing about a couple of things.
  • COMMITTEES, keep the membership down to four each. At least, you can play bridge during the meetings
  • CONVENTIONS, going on all the time, but irritating only when you find three or four delegates in your bed.
  • CORSAGE, no Oregon State man ever dishes out for one of these. Let there be no vulgar display by dough heavy shots at even the most elaborate affairs.
  • DOUBLE DATERS, can do no wrong.
  • FINALS, life at its darkest.
  • FLUNK, a depressing word, to be mentioned only in a whisper. Your best friends won't tell you, but the "profs" don't mind.
  • "HELLO," tradition observed by every true Oregon Stater.
  • IMPORT, the bee-yu-tee-ful blonde from far away. They sure appreciate you more than the local dolls, but you've got to figure the transportation overhead.
  • INFIRM, a place out back of the campus where you go when you're supposed to have something contagious. They won't let you out for a couple of weeks, even if you haven't got it.
  • INTERFRATERNITY COUNCIL, Oregon State Fish and Game Commission.
  • LABORATORY, don't let the old lab notebooks fool you. Even a professor can get wise and change the experiments.
  • LATE PER, the answer to a maiden's prayer.
  • MOVIES, the pictures are good in Corvallis, except on the nights you can afford to go. They save up all the best shows until final week.
  • PIPE, the course that was easy last term.
  • PREREQUISITES, you have to take these for the privilege of flunking other courses later.
  • RALLY COMMITTEE, select group of Hey! Hey! men and women who make a "spectacle" out of every football game.
  • SHOT, term applied to those who rate by those who don't.
  • VALENTINE, the handwriting on the wall. When one of these arrives, prepare to hit the books or the highway.