NSO (New Student Orientation for anyone living deep, deep under a rock) is in full swing and you freshmen must be overwhelmed by something. If your roommates, RAs, impending classes, or theme parties aren’t stressing you out, surely some of the lingo you’ve encountered has been confusing. Your trusted pals at UTB (Under the Button ;) ) are here to elucidate all those tricky abbreviations and nicknames you’ve been hearing this week.
A-Gut: Amy Gutmann: Our campus president and fearless leader. Although she goes by many names (Lady Gutmann, Her Highness), A-Gut is surely the most popular shorthand.
BYO: Bring Your Own: Due to Pennsylvania’s stringent liquor laws, many restaurants don’t have licenses to serve alcohol, but will allow you to bring your own bottle. You can browse this map for BYOs in and around University City.
Copa: Copabanana: Mexican spot on the corner of 40th and Spruce. Do not confuse with Capo (Capogiro), that somewhat stuffy but addictive coffeeshop under the Radian. Half-priced Copa burgers on Wednesdays are not to be missed.
DP: Daily Pennsylvanian: Come on, you know this one. Someone’s definitely forced a copy into your hands since you’ve been here. It’s the campus newspaper.
DRL: David Rittenhouse Laboratory: The easternmost end of campus and most probably home to your Math 104 class. Get used to rolling out of bed 15 minutes earlier than normal to make the trek to these drab halls.
HUP: Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania: One late-night you want to avoid during NSO.
LUCY: Loop through University City: Penn’s own shuttle service that runs through University City and conveniently to 30th Street Station. Fare is free with a PennCard.
OCR: On-Campus Recruitment: With great opportunity comes great stress. OCR is the process by which students find internships and full-time job opportunities at Penn. Blissfully avoid this concept until at least sophomore year.
PSG: Penn Student Government: The umbrella organization for many more student-government related abbreviations: notably CB, NEC, SAC, SCUE, SPEC, and UA. When freshmen elections roll by, it’s an easy way to discern which of your new friends were student council suckas in high school.
SEPTA: Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority: Philadelphia’s comprehensive public transportation system that includes subways, trains, trolleys, and buses. It was also just deemed the best system in the U.S. if you can believe it!
Smokes: Smokey Joe’s: That oasis on 40th Street reserved only for upperclassmen. Stick to the frat parties until you have a way of proving yourself legal.
Steiny-D: Steinhardt-Dietrich: A non-descript academic building for Wharton classes and the locale for many meetings. If you’re interested in making a quick $10, pay a visit to the WBL (Wharton Behavioral Lab) in the basement.
Street: 34th Street Magazine: The arts and culture magazine that appears in the DP on Thursdays. Interested in writing or getting involved? Attend the writer’s meetings on Thursdays at the DP offices (4015 Walnut).
Tampons: Dueling Tampons: Those red pieces of art among the High Rises. Though officially named “The Covenant,” they more aptly resemble used, you know, tampons.
UTB: Under the Button: THE source for news, gossip, and FUN on Penn’s campus. Overwhelmed by the list so far? Cheer up. You’ve found your way here, so you’re not in terrible shape.
VP: Van Pelt: That eyesore beyond the Button where you’re sure to soon spend hours poring over your Econ 001 notes. For other abbreviation-friendly study spots, check out FFA (Fisher Fine Arts) and the RTLs (Rooftop lounges).
WQHS: Penn Student Radio: There are plenty of spots open for freshmen wanting to try their hands at DJing, but don’t expect a hearty audience. This resource is great and also underutilized.