Here's How To Make The Most Of Thanksgiving If You're Spending It At College

by Tessa Harvey

I think we can all agree that Thanksgiving is one of the reigning champs of the holiday season (right along with Christmas and New Year's, of course). The beloved holiday is filled with delicious food, making new memories with family and friends, and feeling very full after going in for extra helpings of the homemade pumpkin pie. Bonus points? It guarantees us a break from work and school. It's complete with cozying on up by the fireplace in your favorite sweater, and being able to take a necessary chill pill from your hectic schedule. Thanksgiving is all of that and more, unless you're spending Thanksgiving at college. Then, it gets a bit tricky.

Your family might live hours away, and the airfare is just too pricey to justify taking the trip a couple of weeks before winter break. Or maybe, for other reasons, going home just isn't an option for you. Whatever the reason may be, staying at college over Thanksgiving might not be the ideal situation, but you can still find several ways to celebrate the holiday. Whether you enjoy your alone time, or you like to book up your schedule with plans, these five ideas will help you make the most of Thanksgiving at your home away from home.

Scope Out A Few Local Or School-Sponsored Events

If you're looking for something to get you out of the house (and out of your pajamas), scope out some school-sponsored or local events in your area. You'd be surprised what you can find.

Some schools offer Thanksgiving dinners, a local church might set you up with a family Thanksgiving to attend, or your dorm may have a Friendsgiving game night. You can't turn down free food, amiright?

Host Thanksgiving Dinner With Friends Who Are Staying On Campus

If your school's not hosting any holiday events, that's not a problem. On a college campus, you better believe you're not the only one chilling by yourself on Turkey Day.

Ask around and get a group of friends and acquaintances together to host your very own family Thanksgiving. Go all out and prep a five-star meal, complete with sweet potato casserole and apple pie, and you'll barely notice you aren't home for the holiday.

Have The Ultimate Treat Yo Self Day

Pull a Donna and Tom and treat yo self, baby! It's all about enjoying the day and being grateful, so why not throw yourself the perfect self-care day?

With a DIY face mask, takeout meal from your favorite restaurant, and a marathon of the holiday classics, you'll be having a better day than you thought possible. It's time for an ultimate pampering session, girlfriend.

Hang Out With Some Incredibly Sweet Pups

You may be alone for the holiday, but guess what? You aren't the only one. There are a lot of pups and cats at your local shelter that could really use some love.

Even if you're not in the market to invite a furry friend into your life, shelters are game for accepting volunteers — and on a day like Thanksgiving, they probably could use a free hand or two with the regular volunteers gone. Hanging out with these furry friends will surely put a smile on your face, and you'll be making their day as well.

Stay Away From Social Media

Let's set the scene. You're making the most of your Thanksgiving on campus, and it's actually been pretty great. You've gone with one of the above options, you've made some new friends, and you ate some pretty delicious food. You pulled out your phone and begin to scroll through Instagram.

On a day like Thanksgiving, when you're missing being home so much, seeing the highlights of your friends' holiday with their families might bring down your mood. Instead of hitting up social media, pop in a movie, make some popcorn, and make the most of your day.