Be thankful for being a UM student

These are the top five reasons that I’m thankful for being a University of Miami student.

5. Palm trees

How many college students can say that in late November, they’re walking through a campus studded with tropical trees under perpetually blue skies while the sun hits their bare shoulders (because tank tops are acceptable year-round)? While elsewhere people are slipping on boots to avoid frost bite, we’re wearing them solely for cuteness. And so what if we don’t have fall leaves, we can go visit up north, and then Instagram pictures of it.

4. We’re good looking

Speaking of hotness, the Daily Beast lists the University of Miami as one of the sexiest colleges in America, sitting at number 8. Hot weather fosters revealing fashions, which isn’t a problem on a campus that has guys and girls scoring 9.50 and 9.43 out of 10. We’re lucky to be surrounded by generally good-looking people, because who doesn’t need some eye candy to perk up their Monday mornings? No. 1 on the list is the University of Wisconsin-Madison. They might have sexier students, but they do live in Wisconsin.

3. Location

Which brings me to our location. Our campus is in Coral Gables, a beautiful shaded suburb. It’s not far from Coconut Grove, a place known for crowded drunkenness, a bohemian feel and yummy food spots (but mostly for its crowded drunkenness). Then there’s Brickell, complete with tall steel buildings and sophisticated locales.  The club scene in South Beach is famous, and during the day we can enjoy its beach or stroll down Lincoln Road like a tourist. It’s a cliche, but we truly live where you vacation.

2. Diversity

And because we live in such a destination, it attracts people from all over the world. Students at schools like the University of Wisconsin-Madison (nothing personal) probably don’t go to class with people from Australia or Italy. Walking through campus and hearing five different languages within minutes makes me feel like a student of the world. Plus, we always have a place to stay when traveling (hint, hint, my international friends).

1. Top-tier academics

Although we attend school on a sun-soaked campus flooded with good-looking people in the middle of a bustling international city, it’s not all sunshine and partying. The fact remains that UM is a serious top-50 school, filled with professors always willing to help.

Walking around UM (beneath the palm trees, of course), you can’t help but feel grateful. It’s a relaxed atmosphere that makes you want to go to school, and it mixes academics, spirit and a whole lot of sun and happiness. And that’s definitely something to be thankful for.

Melanie Martinez is a sophomore majoring in journalism.