Grapevine’s regional guide to CU

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In terms of where people come from, CU Boulder is a diverse place. With this diversity comes some tribalism, and you can usually tell where people come from based on a few of the factors discussed below. #BeBoulder!

The in-staters

In-state kids are usually super friendly, but love to have the last word in regards to the best hiking and skiing spots. They will also battle East Coasters over who can drive in snow/sleet better. News flash, the East Coast kids have to drive on roads MADE OF ICE for like 2.5 months of the year, not that we’re biased or anything. If you want information on Colorado in general, these are definitely the people to ask. On any given day, there is a nine out of 10 chance they’re wearing some kind of Broncos apparel.

Southern Californians

Whether they’re from the Valley, the Westside or Laguna, you can count on the the kids from SoCal to bro you away. They’re just so #chill. Students from Southern California are typically friendly enough, but can get a little grumpy between the months of October and March since most of them have never seen snow in their lives, except for maybe a weekend trip to Tahoe. When the warm weather comes around, you can pick a SoCal buff out of the crowd with their natural tan, skateboards and Vans Sk8-Hi’s.

Northern Californians

Take the chillest of the Southern Californians, ship them 400 miles up north and throw them in some Patagonia, and you’ll have the CU kids of NorCal! Whether they’re from the Bay, Sacramento, or Santa Cruz, NorCal kids are easygoing, can definitely be into the outdoors and are usually ahead of the curve with the latest organic foods.


Sports, sports, sports. It seems like you can identify students from Chicago in 1.5 seconds because almost all of them are bound to repping their favorite team – although the Blackhawks, Cubbies, Whitesox and Bulls seem to get more love than the Bears. When you meet someone from Chicago you’ll know it when:

A. They say they’re from ChicAAgo (emphasis on the “A”)

B. They bring up a professional sports team within two minutes of conversing.

If you don’t beef over sports, expect Buffs from Chicago to be laid back, charming, and to not even bat an eye when it’s three degrees and snowing.

The Northeast Clique

Boston, Philadelphia, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, etc. No matter where along the East Coast Buffs call home, you can count on them to be VERY real with you. They may take your parking spot at Trade Joes, but you can also feel safe with them driving you to Breck or Vail, even in the most treacherous of winter conditions. East Coasters are definitely not as friendly – at least initially – as the other Buffs on this list, but maybe you will grow to appreciate their honesty. If they ski, eight out of 10 chance they’ll have a “Ski the East” laptop sticker.


If you see someone driving 95 mph on I-25 in a Jeep Wrangler, chances are they’re a Buff from Texas. Texans drive like bats out of hell and are not afraid to defend their home state. Students from Texas are also some of the warmest people at CU. Once you get to know someone from Texas, you might be tempted to book a Southwest ticket ASAP and try some barbecue and or cattle ranching for yourself!

South Floridians 

Perhaps another species all together, South Floridians are truly mystical creatures. Hailing from Palm Beach and below, they are kind of a hybrid between the Texans and East Coasters. If you heard someone complaining during freshman orientation that the party/club scene in Boulder is dead, and this person “totally has a connect in Denver,” there’s a good chance they’re from South Florida. However, you can count on your South Florida friends to party with you until the wee hours of the morning, since most of them are probably used to calling Ubers at 7am while crawling out of Story, Wall or LIV anyway. If you befriend a South Floridian, chances are you are in for a fun four years!

So there you have it, a breakdown of the regions that CU students are most likely to call home. While this list definitely does not hold true for every person, hopefully you can use it figure out where your classmates are from before they even tell you! However, despite the differences, there are amazing Buffs from every state and multiple continents. CU is a big school and you are sure to meet kind and interesting people – no matter where they’re from.


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