What does it mean to be cool?

Kristal Reynaga

The definition of the word “cool” and the perception of its meaning to various people is vast, changing and often difficult for many to describe or explain.

According to the Urban Dictionary website, the meaning of cool is: “The best way to say something is neat-o, awesome, or swell. The phrase ‘cool’ is very relaxed, never goes out of style, and people will never laugh at you for using it, very convenient for people like me who don’t care about what’s in.”

Oscar Puga, a senior majoring in business finance, said when he thinks of a cool person’s personality, he thinks of someone who is confident.

“Someone who is not shy and is very well-spoken,” Puga said. “And clothing-wise, all the trending styles, the trending shoes, and brands play a big role.”

Puga said certain brands exude an element of “coolness.”

“When you see a little swoosh of Nike, that automatically says cool,” Puga said.

Puga said even though most college students have difficulty purchasing higher-end brand names such as Gucci or Louis Vuitton, they compensate by purchasing more reasonably-priced brand names.

“The main brands that market themselves well such as Nike, Adidas and Reebok, are most attractive to college students when accounting for economical factors, Puga said.

Heather Hankins, a freshman majoring in biology, feels that cool represents the style someone brings to fruition.

“A cool person is somebody who helps out, is funny, and makes jokes or does cool things on the weekend such as going out, or traveling,” Hankins said.

Miguel Espinoza, a junior majoring in physics said that his perception of cool is something that is intriguing.

“For me when I hear cool, it sounds to me like something that is really intriguing or original in its own sense,” Espinoza said. “I’m a science guy, so whenever I learn something new, I think it’s cool. And as far as behaviors go, it’s not so much for me about people who follow mainstream things, such as people who vape, but what is cool to me is people who do new and adventurous things. So, basically my definition of cool is the new and exciting.”

Alexis Roberts, a freshman student and undeclared major said that when she hears the word cool she automatically thinks of a relaxing, nonchalant, filler word that is used when she doesn’t really have anything else to say or when she finds it difficult to formulate a real opinion on a topic.

Roberts said that cool people exude confidence.

“I think one of the main qualifications in order for someone to be considered cool, popular, or for people to like you, or want to know you is if you have confidence,” Roberts said. “You can pretty much be cool in anything that you wear, but if you have the confidence to rock it, then people start to believe it and then they start to think it’s cool, too.”