Apr 5th, 2023, 12:00 PM

How Do You Balance College and Club Life?

By Gloria Kabongo
Image credit: Yasmin Musah
AUP students attempt to live their best life while juggling assignments and a new city.

"Ça bouge" literally translated to "it's moving", is a phrase often used by many to describe life in Paris. As it is most AUP students' first time living in Paris, they are naturally eager to explore this fast-paced city during the day—and especially during the night. With a medley of museums available, the endless restaurant options and the different varieties of clubs that offer different nightlife experiences, it is very easy to lose focus and find yourself struggling with your school workload as a result of your life outside of college. 

It has been a common trend for college students to create aesthetically pleasing videos about how they manage to balance their academics as well as their lives outside of that. Most of these videos make these YouTubers or TikTokers come off as really put together. They often show them following a set routine where they wake up early, attend lectures, spend countless hours in the library and use their weekends to catch up with their social lives. However, that is not often the case with most college students.

@aleksandrahoeye throwback to life at uct❤️ #study #studytok #student #uct #capetown ♬ original sound - s

College moves along very quickly: one minute you find yourself in the first semester of your first year and the next you are getting ready to graduate. While your professor is assigning you a five page essay, your friends could be texting you about a new place to hit up. With everything that is happening around us, the question “How do you balance college and nightlife?” is a fitting thing to ask students of AUP.

Image credit: Yasmin Musah

“I go out around three times a week. Mostly once during the week, then on Friday and Saturday. I usually prefer going to bars instead of clubs as I enjoy sipping on cocktails,” said AUP sophomore Liam Brandt. Brandt’s favorite places to go to are cocktail bars and clubs that play techno music. He also enjoys experiencing French culture and meeting new people, which is why he is constantly on the lookout for places to socialize at. 

“I balance it [studies] quite well because college for me starts everyday at 10:35 which is why I can never stay late at bars. Furthermore, on Sunday I have the whole day to really work on university and most of my assignments can be completed in quite a short amount of time," Brandt said. "My courses allow me to have two lives, one outside and one inside, and I have enough time to balance the two.”

It is a natural thing for one to get excited about their very first year in college and to even sometimes unconsciously prioritize their nightlife over university. The party scene at American colleges and AUP slightly differ which may be a result of the legal drinking age in France, which is three years younger than in the U.S. It has been said countless times by professors at AUP that most first years tend to go wild as a result of the legal drinking age here. On top of that, many students find themselves far from the family and friends that that they already have and as a result this new found freedom allows them to experiment without being surveilled.

Image credit: Yasmin Musah

“I go out 5 days a week but not clubs, I go to bars,” said AUP first year Daniela Biasini. Biasini finds that she does not necessarily balance it and as a result finds herself skipping a class or two. 

One could say that nightlife may have a negative impact on the student's college life; they could be missing classes, missing deadlines and struggle to stay on top of things and as a result this could cause them to sometimes crumble under pressure. However, it could be argued that one's first year in college is probably the time when most of these mistakes would be made in order to create some form of balance within your life. Your first year allows you to figure out what exactly works and does not work for you—not to say that you will have it all figured out by the time your first year ends, but you will able to approach everything with better perspective. 

It is indeed possible to find a balance between both college as well as your nightlife in Paris. However that does not negate the fact that you can often find yourself getting lost in it all, especially when living in a foreign metropolis. As much as it may be important to prioritize college life, it is also important to take a break, go out with your friends and have fun because these are years we will forever look back on.