Students find themselves in different kind of identity crises

Gwendolyn Ducre

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Spring break is an escape from reality, class and parents.

Sometimes, it is a student’s chance to take a break from his or her identity.

This may result in telling someone a false name, or exaggerating the truth about where you are from.

Some find this as a safe way to avoid any danger, others do it for fun.

Senior business major Amber Atkins said she changes her name so guys can’t find and befriend her Facebook or Google her.

Atkins said she never tells anyone she meets on vacation her real name.

She said she doesn’t use the same name- it’s usually just the first name she thinks of. She said she has named herself as “Oliva Lee.”

Using a false name has saved Atkins from embarrassment.

On one vacation, Atkins met someone that turned out to be a professor at a university she wished to attend.

ULM police department’s Lt. Steve Mahon said he doesn’t see any harm with changing your name or where you are from for your safety.

Mahon suggests:

“My cardinal rule is this: Go out with your friends, go home with your friends. It’s one of those things that keeps you a whole lot safer, and eliminates about 98 percent of the bad drama. This way you can look out for one another.”

While some are thinking of safety, others are thinking of how fun it is to say they are from another city, and even adopting a pretend accent.

Junior health studies major- and Natchitoches native- Devonte Grinstead admitted to pretending he was from New Orleans or Lafayette just to talk with a Cajun accent.

“I just like the way they talk and I wish I had their accent. I’ll say things like ‘hey baby’,” Grinstead said.

In some cases, pretending to be someone else may just be completely random.

For senior health studies major, Josh McDowell, being someone else actually scored him a free meal.

“Spring break of last year, we went out to a restaurant to eat. The waitress thought she recognized me. She was asking me questions like ‘do you remember the time..?’ I answered the questions off chance correctly and she gave me a free meal.”

McDowell said the waitress asked for his number, but his number changed right after the false ‘reunion.’

McDowell and the waitress haven’t spoken since.