Revenge of the Nerds

hannah moran, reporter

The kind of teenagers who actually enjoy debating infrastructure implementation and nuclear weapons are not the same kind of teenagers who you’d expect to be engaging in questionable activities on the dance floor.

Being a nerd is not all it’s cracked up to be.

People perceive “nerds” as typically spending Friday nights doing homework or maybe playing Dungeons and Dragons. Such preconceived notions about nerds often detract from individuals’ actual personalities.
Contrary to popular belief, “nerds” know how to have a good time.

A primary example would be the Model United Nations delegate dance, an event which occurs every February at the luxurious Palmer House hotel in Chicago. One of two scenarios could play out at this conference culmination, which constitutes a dark room, loud music and 1,200 other teenagers.

First, everyone could just awkwardly stand around. Or second, all the building sexual tension could burst in a mad pit of moshing bodies.

Typically, the second scenario prevails.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the delegates from all across America, the highly motivated students who solve all the world’s problems in four days, were indeed, tearing up the dance floor.

The glasses/suspenders/nose spray/socially awkward stereotype is really no longer pertinent.

Activities such as debate, leadership conferences and Model United Nations usually require the participants to wear suits. As a female, I am a bit biased, but boys–suits are good. Suits are very, very good. Smart boys in suits make for a nerdy yet highly enjoyable extra curricular experience.

There are other advantages to being an active participant in extra-curricular activities.

Being involved allows you to be exposed to a vast range of enlightening enrichment opportunities.
Translation: nerds get to go on lots of field trips.

In fact, due to the copious amount of opportunities to leave school, they probably spend less time in class than their school-hating classmates.

Usually the field trips are more than just an exit strategy.

Often, a profusion of learning occurs, whether it’s about World War II or monkey brains. Field trips will also include the opportunity to purchase a high quality lunch.

Another common misconception is that nerds are all helplessly un-athletic. While this may hold some element of truth, Harvard graduate Jeremy Lin proves this false by being deemed athletic enough to play in the NBA.

For those of us who are not nerdy enough to hold an economics degree from Harvard or are not athletic enough to play in the NBA, we still find ways to fill our letter jackets.

Debate and Scholars’ Bowl, for example, are just as rigorous as any typical varsity sport, except with a much lower rate of injury (usually). The same competitive mindset is required, and in no other sport is screaming at the opponent encouraged.

Being a nerd has incredible advantages. Fraternizing with guys (or girls) in suits, leaving school, determining our generation’s future and most importantly, shattering stereotypes–it’s all in a day’s work.