21 Shocking Facts About The Incoming College Freshman Class That Will Make You Feel Really Old


1. Most of these students will not be rapping the theme song to The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air if it comes on at the bar at 2 am. By the time the series wrapped up in 1996, most of them had still not been born.

2. When Rugrats first aired on Nickelodeon in 1991, it would be another 5-6 years before this incoming freshman class even came into existence.

3. Most of these kids did not get their driver’s license until 2012 or 2013.

4. That means they never experienced the process of printing out directions on MapQuest to drive to their friend’s house. They didn’t even have to worry about getting a GPS system in their cars or buying a TomTom, because they already had everything they needed, right on their smartphones.

5. These kids weren’t even alive yet when Friends started. And when it ended, they were only about 7 or 8.

6. Many of these students were born the same year that the first Harry Potter book was published (in the UK).

7. …And on the day it came out, June 30th, 1997, some of them weren’t even born yet.

8. Of all the “Disney Renaissance” movies, these ones already existed (some, for several years) before the majority of the newest college class were born: The Little Mermaid, The Rescuers Down Under, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Lion King, A Goofy Movie, Pocahontas, Toy Story, James and the Giant Peach, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

9. Most of these kids would never recognize the AOL dial up tone, because during AOL’s prime, they were only 2-3 years old.
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10. So chatrooms, AIM, screen names, A/S/L, away messages, and SmarterChild are all completely foreign concepts to them.

11. So is this: “Everyone stay off the phone! I’m trying to get online!”

12. Most of these kids were born the same year that Britney Spears signed with Jive Records.

13. And when the song “…Baby One More Time” was released, they were… babies.

14. And when Britney gave her legendary 2001 MTV VMA performance in which she danced with a snake, these kids were only about 4 years old.

15. Misson:Impossible, Air Force One, My Best Friend’s Wedding, Jerry McGuire, and The Nutty Professor are the same age as the incoming college freshman class.

16. Most of these kids were born around the same time that the Spice Girls’ debut single, “Wannabe,” was released. Up until that point, no one had even heard of this British girl group.

17. By the time they graduate college, it will be 2019. We’ll be preparing for Kanye to run for president.

18. They were only 10 or 11 when the first iPhone came out.

19. Many of these students are the same age as Hercules. 

20. They will never understand the concept of “Facebook albums,” or uploading photos to your computer from your digital camera. They’re entering college with Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, emojis, etc – all at their literal fingertips. We had Facebook. For some of us, maybe MySpace. That was IT.

21. Thankfully, though, they will never experience the awfulness that was JuicyCampus. Let’s pray it stays that way. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

I’m a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

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