I think the term is just a by word for the circumstances. I am a college student and I never wear a fragrance in class, nor would anybody. Fragrances are only for basically 3 different situations: bar, date, and parties. Most college bars and parties are not really sophisticated.
A "college" person can have two different approaches, they can either get a mass market safe scent because that's what is called for in the situations, or they can get a better one because they are surrounded by mundane smells like Armani (insert line), Polo (insert line), etc. One can easily stand out if they have something slightly better.