College Media Story Ideas: The Campus Bucket List

In a pre-commencement piece published last month in The Pendulum student newspaper at Elon University, a staff writer lays out of a list of more than 20 activities undergrads should consider undertaking prior to leaving campus.

Some are general- race through sprinklers, steal a brick from a campus walkway, make a 2 a.m. run to the nearby Wal-Mart, pull a library all-nighter, and take a Polar Bear plunge in a freeeeeezing campus lake.  Others are Elon-specific. They add up to what the piece calls the “Elon Bucket List.”

The related larger question: What are the must-see, must-experience activities, events, and rituals in which every incoming frosh at your own school should take part between class and episodes of “Glee”? Every campus should have a bucket list.  Its prime publishing times: the freshmen orientation issue, the first issue of a new semester or of course just before graduation.  Seek student, alumni, faculty, and staff input via social networking and publish the raddest, funniest, most popular, and most bizarre responses.  Run a contest for the best bucket list viral video.

The main key to the list’s awesomeness: Go beyond the stereotypical.  (The Pendulum‘s list, admittedly, does swing between fresh and cliché.)  Attempt to localize a national current event.  (Protest at the local BP gas station, wear an Adam Wheeler mask and attempt to get into the admissions building, etc.) Select an activity built around a prominent historical landmark, moment or anniversary on campus.  And remember that at least a few items on any modern bucket list must be digital.

One Response to “College Media Story Ideas: The Campus Bucket List”
  1. Sara Gregory says:

    We did something like this at The Daily Tar Heel earlier this year, asking readers to submit items on their UNC bucket list. We posted a notice in the paper, on our Facebook page and asked people to tweet using a hashtag. We got a ton of responses and ran the best ones in the paper. More people got involved giving suggestions for this than they had done in the past when we sought reader suggestions.