College characters: The Nerd

Assignment deadlines and exams are looming. That Monday 9am you never go to? Brigit Hirsch profiles the person that you go to for your missed notes

Ah, exam time. The crunch of leaves and free time underfoot, the crisp smell of cold air and mumps in Front Square. Through it all, there is one college character who is either consistently, unnecessarily worried or maddeningly calm as exams barrel towards Trinity: The Nerd. 

By an evaluation purely based on fashion, there are two strands of Nerds. The first type of Nerd wears a neat, solid-coloured jumper over a collared shirt, dress, or similar. They carry a laptop bag or brown satchel at all times. The second type of Nerd wears blissfully wrinkled hoodies and comfortable trousers, and totes an overstuffed or strikingly empty backpack; there is no in-between. Both types of Nerds wear glasses just large enough to betray hours of study, but not quite funky enough to be mainstream arts-student couture. 

“They are the only students that have nothing to fear from desk monitors, because they always take breaks for less than half an hour”

The habits of the Nerd are enviable if you are reaching the end of the university experience and only want to nap. They sleep at night and rise before 9am, living a life filled with hours and hours of study. Between the early bedtimes and early rises, they of course inhabit the libraries of Trinity. They are the only students that have nothing to fear from desk monitors, because they always take breaks for less than half an hour. Somehow, they have already memorised postgraduate readings for every weekly tutorial, and they breeze through Foundation Scholarship exams with only one or two mental breakdowns. Nerds are sometimes found travelling in packs of incredibly smart people, but they might also choose the lonelier path of individual study.

The future of the Nerd is one filled with potential success. They may well end up as a rampantly successful businessperson or prestigious academic, or become a wealthy recluse who chronically wears frumpy clothing. They will, no doubt, walk up for graduation at the front of the class, with the rest of us happy to trail behind them and receive degrees of perfectly respectable rankings. Their lifestyles are the living embodiment of that age-old question: whether academic success truly sets you up for success in the years beyond Trinity. 

“We all wish we could master the art of being a Nerd”

At one time or another, though, we all wish we could master the art of being a Nerd. When we submit essays crafted in a single night, when we receive the published marks for that essay, it becomes clear that a healthy sleep schedule might indeed impact academic success. And for this reason, or perhaps because the Nerd might be rich someday, it is important to befriend and emulate the lifestyle of the Nerd. Ask for their help, feed them in exchange for grinds, learn from the ordered life they lead, and drag them out of the library once in a while for drinks. The beauty of college is the way in which different college characters can benefit from each other, and the Nerd is no exception.



Brigit Hirsch

Brigit Hirsch is the current Social Media Editor of Trinity News.