Making memories to mark off a bucket list


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Justin Bieber and Dwight Schrute stare down from the wall in the living room among a cluster of posters – a sign of a typical freshman dorm. Other mementos indicating involvement in events are pinned on a corkboard. Only in the corner of the kitchen is there any evidence of the abnormal in the apartment.

Left to right: Rebekah Glew, Erin Hummelgarn, Allie Heck and Nicole James recreate the pose on Apartment #304’s bucket list. (Photo by Whitnie Soelberg)

A long, white sheet of paper, hung from ceiling to floor, lists activities the four roommates hope to accomplish by the end of the school year. This list, decorated with pictures of future activities and a cartoon caricature of the four, is a “bucket list.”

“Me and my roommates decided at the beginning of the year that we wanted to have a bucket list of things we wanted to do throughout the year,” Erin Hummelgarn, the list’s designer, said. “Then we decided that we wanted to go super over the top and have this giant poster on our wall of bucket list items.”

The bucket list might have started as a roommate bonding idea, but it advanced into a list of organized events.

“I’m a list person where I’ll make goals for myself all the time and it is kind of nice to share that with my roommates,” Nicole James, an elementary education major, said. “It brings us closer together. It’s fun that I’m not just having all these goals for myself, but I can share it with them and we can help each other with having fun.”

Hummelgarn, James, Allie Heck and Rebekah Glew didn’t know each other when they moved into their freshman dorm room in August, but now good friends, they hope to accomplish all of the 45 items on their bucket list by April.

“For me at least, it is fun to have, but it is more fun just to do stuff and not to be like, ‘Oh we’re doing this just to check it off,’” Glew, a public health major, said. “It’s like these are the things that we want to do together because we want to spend time together.”

Items on the list range from attending BYU’s production of “Phantom of the Opera” to eating at specific restaurants, as well as inside jokes pertaining to “Skyscraper” and “Shawty.”

Each time the group completes a task on the bucket list, they hold a ceremony to mark off the item on their poster. They Instagram the accomplishment and celebrate their success.

Erin Hummelgarn marks no. 24: See “Phantom of the Opera” as part of the girls’ checking-off ceremony. (Photo by Whitnie Soelberg)

“It helps with the college experience in general because there’s so much here you can take advantage of and there is so much to do,” Hummelbarn said. “I think if you don’t figure out what you want to do, then you kind of forget about things.”

Having the bucket list has helped with the newness of college life, and the roommates all recommend that people have a bucket list at some point.

“I feel like, I know especially here, that you get so stressed out with classes and homework,” Heck said. “If you have a bucket list ahead of time you can kind of think of things that you want to do so you can take that time out. So it is to be with your roommates or friends, whoever you have it with.”

For now, the girls are trying to work their way through their 45-itemed bucket list and make plans for future bucket lists. They’re having fun and making memories while they do it.

“I like it,” Glew said. “I’ll probably make one (a bucket list) every year.”

For more ideas on how to create your own “BYU Bucket List,” download the “Y Book” from the Student Alumni association.

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