Campus Life

Getting Involved at FSU

October 4, 2015 in Alive Campus, Campus Life

There are over 600 student-oriented clubs offered at FSU, which can undoubtedly be overwhelming to incoming freshman looking to get involved. Ranging from the skydiving club to medical and law-based clubs, the question is, where do you even begin? It’s best to look online through all of the clubs offered, and then choose one or two you think will suit your interests. The point of joining a club is to enjoy it; not for it to be another stressful obligation on your plate. Whatever you are studying in school may be a great place to start in regards to finding the right fit. I will narrow it down to just a few clubs that are most recognized here at FSU.

Advertising Club: While it’s one of the more expensive clubs to participate in, it’s very beneficial for those majoring in Advertising, Communications, English, etc. The club works with several big advertising agencies and provides students with real world experience, making it a great investment. The club also takes a trip each year to visit major agencies; this year, the trip was to New York!

Her Campus FSU

Her Campus FSU

Her Campus: While this is generally geared towards a more female staff, males are certainly not excluded if they are interested in writing for this huge global site. FSU has its own Her Campus chapter that is progressing more and more each year. The student-based staff provides the latest on entertainment, career, fashion, and so much more. It’s a great community to get involved in and is recognized by several other schools, which also have accessible links on the Her Campus site. If Her Campus doesn’t interest you, there are plenty of other clubs offered for those passionate about writing and editing. The Kudzu Review and the The Eggplant are two of which, and are more geared towards a gender-neutral staff.

Bowling Club: The bowling club at FSU is popular since we have a bowling alley located on campus, making it convenient for those interested in joining. What many students enjoy about this particular club is that it promotes recreational activity and can be enjoyed any time throughout the year without the worry of weather. Members even have the privilege of participating in tournaments and exhibitions to represent FSU as a team.

Center for Global Engagement: This organization works to increase global awareness and diversity at FSU, participating in several cross-cultural exchanges. This is an important program, and is especially beneficial for those passionate about studying abroad and learning about different cultures around the world.

Healthy Noles: College students are more aware of their health than ever before, which is why this is a growing club at FSU. It facilitates and promotes the understanding of leading a healthier lifestyle through proper diet and exercise while in college, which we know can be a difficult task between drinking and cheap fast food.

Healthy Noles

Healthy Noles

Habitat for Humanity: This nonprofit organization takes part in several community service events to promote housing for those suffering poverty. If you are better at hands-on activities and enjoy being in the outdoors, then this may be the club for you.

Fraternities/ Sororities: While Greek life technically only constitutes 16 percent of the FSU population, it still seems to play a very significant role at the university. If you’re interested in narrowing down your group of friends at such a large school, then a fraternity of sorority may be the best organization for you. Not only does it allow you to meet people that will become practically like family, but it also increases your social life by engaging you in different activities and participating in multiple events throughout the year. In the end, it always seems to be rewarding for those who are really passionate about joining.

With these only being a few of the many beneficial clubs to join at FSU, there is simply no excuse to not get involved during your time at the university. Be sure to attend the first-day meetings to see if you think it’s the right pick for you, and do your research beforehand to pick out what you think suits you best. It’s all about enjoying these extracurriculars as a small break away from school and making friends with students who share the same interests as you. FSU offers a site that allows you do limit your search by simply typing in your interests. Click on the link provided to begin your quest, and get involved! https://nolecentral.dsa.fsu.edu.

Controversial Issues at Florida State

September 14, 2015 in Alive Campus, Campus Life

A number of controversial issues can be found at every university. At Florida State, there are so many students attending that it’s nearly impossible to not have topics up for debate. There are a few issues in particular that have been stirring for the past few years. The biggest and most recent one is the question of whether or not guns should be allowed on the campus. There are so many sides to this argument that it needs to be examined in full detail.

Almost a year ago, there was a shooting at FSU’s main library, in which we were lucky enough to have escaped with no fatalities excluding the gunman. However, three students were seriously wounded because they were unable to protect themselves. After this situation, the question arose of whether or not students should be allowed to carry concealed weapons on campus as a form of protection. While no laws have been passed approving this notion, there is still debate as to whether it not it will improve campus safety, or if it will only increase threats. The argument lies in the idea that innocent, unarmed students have no way of saving themselves if more situations occur like the one in the library.

As of right now, students with valid permits are only allowed to leave guns locked in their cars during football games, which is something that has only recently been approved. It is still not acceptable for students to carry concealed weapons across campus. In my personal opinion, the idea that several students could be walking the campus carrying a concealed weapon is more dangerous than not, and therefore should not be permitted, Although students should certainly have the right to protect themselves, the more that possess guns, the higher chance of more tragic situations occurring. For example, if a student is drunk on campus, stressed over finals, fighting, or whatever the case, a weapon may become their go-to. These weapons are not things that should be taken lightly. If the campus wants students to have more protection, then security should be increased instead. Police officers and security guards should be the only armed individuals on campus, being that they are trained and know to use them in only dire situations.

The Prevention of Hazing

The Prevention of Hazing

Another controversial issue that occurs at FSU deals with Greek life. While I will not name any organizations in particular, it’s a known fact that some of the sororities and fraternities oftentimes participate in hazing during rush and initiation week. This is something that I do not agree with. These organizations are meant to accept you as a person and make you feel as if you have become a member of a small family. Therefore, placing these students in uncomfortable and sometimes very dangerous situations is not how to make them feel “at home.” I think greater prevention measures need to be taken in order for hazing to be completely avoided at all costs. There is currently a site dedicated to this issue, which FSU pledges that hazing should never be utilized. This is certainly a step in the right direction. However, more needs to be done to ensure it never occurs. There are so many situations in which students are desperate to be initiated as members of an organization that they never reveal what their initiation tasks consisted of, even if they were life-threatening. Unfortunately, it leaves too many organizations to do things that are often left unsaid.

So with these two issues stirring at FSU, I think it’s important that everyone provides their opinion on the matters and acts upon them. Controversial issues will always take a while to be resolved, but it is ultimately up to us to make a difference.

The Typical Day of a Seminole

September 7, 2015 in Alive Campus, Campus Life

The typical day of a college student varies significantly. Some work, others are members of several clubs on campus, others intern, and some may just strictly focus on classes if they are in a difficult major. A typical day in college for me is certainly a busy one. With Tuesday/ Thursday classes only, I keep my schedule open to work my part-time job as a waitress at a popular local sports bar. I completed my required internship over the summer so classes, working, interning, and attending club meetings wouldn’t be too overwhelming all in one semester. My three classes, twice a week, go straight through from 9:30 to 1:45. I wake up around 8 to give myself time to have coffee and eat breakfast. Some days, I may even wake up earlier to do some homework or study before walking to class. Once I complete my classes for the day, I walk home to my apartment, eat lunch, and get ready for work, which usually starts sometime between 3:30 and 5. I usually work until about 10, depending on how busy the night is at the restaurant. I then drive home, eat dinner, and unwind at home by doing some homework if needed, or simply reading a book to fall asleep. I also take an online course, so I make time for that either at night or on my days off.

I organize my schedule so I can work and attend class all in the same day. By doing so, I can have a full day off to take care of homework, grocery shopping, seeing friends, etc. These are usually on Mondays and Wednesdays. On my free days, I’ll either go to the pool with friends or simply relax at home while doing work on and off. With a busy schedule, I sometimes cook all of my food in advance for the week ahead so I’m not constantly buying food out. I keep my evenings open for meetings, specifically for Her Campus- a known organization that has its own FSU chapter. If there is no meeting to attend, I catch up or get a headstart on my homework for the week, which usually consists of several pages of reading, papers, and blogging. I also make time on my days off to exercise, which totals about four times a week.

Time management is key in college!

Time management is key in college!

Finally, my weekends always vary. Since I work in a restaurant, it’s important that I’m available to work almost every Friday and Saturday night. However, depending on my shift, I sometimes will be done early enough to go out with friends afterwards. Unfortunately, that’s a commitment you have to make and plan your schedule around if you want to work as a server. If I have the mornings or afternoons off, I am always making sure to attend the football games- a fall tradition that makes you wish every day was Saturday throughout the semester.

It’s important to stay busy and productive throughout college to build your resume, but always find the time to relax no matter how crazy your schedule may be. Sometimes, there’s just not enough time in a day to get everything done. That’s what weekends are for. Days will always vary according to your agenda and how much work you have. Some weeks will be entirely exhausting, while others will be more relaxing. A great idea is to write yourself notes each day of the tasks you need to complete so it’s all planned out already. It’s all about time management and knowing how to balance free time with productivity.

How To Spend Your School Vacations Right!

August 28, 2015 in Campus Life, Travel

College Spring Break

College Spring Break

Like most college students, University of Rhode Island Rams are excited for spring break, Thanksgiving break, and just about any excuse to have off from school. Most students will travel home during breaks, but some will choose to travel with their friends. At URI, students usually travel to Mexico for spring break or even Florida (if they’re over 21). Whatever the destination may be, traveling during breaks seems to be a must. In addition to the destination, transportation is just as important. Please be reminded that URI is in the middle of nowhere and is sometimes a hassle to travel to and from. This is true for a lot of universities therefore planning ahead of time is really important. There’s nothing worse than getting stuck with a horrible seat or even traveling at an unreasonable time because you waited too long to book your traveling arrangements.

This spring break, students will be traveling to Mexico (most likely) with other college students. This includes students from URI, but also from 10-20 other colleges and universities. From personal experience, if you have not had the opportunity to go on one of these spring break trips…DO IT! You won’t ever get the chance to sit by the beach with hundreds of other college students, soak up the sun, and drink yourself into a week of unforgettable memories. It’s not always fun and games, but if you go with a good group of people and are there to enjoy yourself (be prepared to get five hours of sleep total), you’ll have a blast.

Habitat for Humanity Alternative Spring Break

Habitat for Humanity Alternative Spring Break

There is also an alternative spring break option for most students at colleges and universities, which I do not think is taken advantage of. Sometimes programs like Habitat for Humanity host alternative spring breaks where they bring groups of students to areas around the United States and build homes and/or schools for underprivileged families and communities. I think this traveling option is productive and a great way to get involved in and around the community. Besides, if you choose to travel somewhere else in the US, you won’t technically be going home. Isn’t that what school vacations are all about?

For other students who are just traveling home for breaks, make sure you purchase your plane, train, or bus tickets in advance. I’ve heard of people waiting until the last minute to purchase tickets and they’ve either missed out on going home or have had to pay a ridiculous amount of money just to get home. Know your exam/work schedule well in advanced in order to book your tickets. Luckily for us Rhody Rams, the Amtrak is a five minute drive from campus. These trains go to just about anywhere and are a convenient way to travel home. Public buses area also available on campus and travel to the city of Providence multiple times a day. The best piece of advice I have for students trying to travel home during breaks, is to book their tickets and reservations a few weeks or even months ahead!

Traveling while your in college is a great time to explore and learn about yourself and others. As much as I encourage people to study abroad, if some are unable to, traveling during school vacations is a great idea. We are lucky enough to have breaks that range from two weeks to five weeks during Christmas time, therefore we must take advantage of it all. Whether its going to Florida and having some fun at pool parties or going to Cancun with the rest of your university, traveling during breaks is a great idea and should be enjoyed by all college students!

Going Green at FSU

August 21, 2015 in Alive Campus, Campus Life

Going green and making the effort to sustain resources has become increasingly popular at universities. FSU is no exception to this, and has worked even harder at doing so in the recent years. With multiple green clubs and resource conservation options offered along the campus, there is no excuse for students not to participate in going green. After doing some detailed research on how FSU participates, I found several unique ways in which it works to eliminate waste, sustain resources, and maintain a clean environment.

Garnet and Gold Team Eliminates Waste at Doak

Garnet and Gold Team Eliminates Waste at Doak

Recycling Bins: There are recycling bins located all over the campus. With easy access to these bins, it’s easy for every student to participate in going green by simply recycling an empty water bottle rather than tossing it in the trash bin. There are also bins for paper products to be disposed and recycled separately, in addition to ones designated for bottles and cans only. The recycling team visits the paper bins each week to collect office paper to eventually be reused for different purposes.

Garnet and Gold Goes Green: This is a green club offered at FSU, in which students specifically work around the stadium. About 30 to 40 volunteer participate in cleaning Doak before and during the football games. This helps to reduce the mass litter that the crowd brings on game days.

Green Fund: This is an organization that contributes in assisting environmental progress at FSU. The projects are student led and essentially focus on reducing the amount of waste generated on the campus.

Hydration Systems: All of the buildings on campus have water fountains that are specifically built to fill reusable water bottles. New ones have recently been installed in all three libraries on the campus.

Recyclable Bin

Recyclable Bin

ReCycle: ReCycle is a campus bike program offered to students at the beginning of every summer. The idea is for a student to rent a bike to conveniently get around without the use of a car. It only costs $35 for the entire semester, and includes a lock, light, and helmet. This is a great means of transportation, as several students do use bikes since the campus is compact and does not necessarily require a car. Bike parking is located in several spots outside each of the buildings for convenience.

Grounds: This is the department at FSU that maintains the athletic fields across campus, covering 547 acres of land. A simple way in which they eliminate wastes is reusing concrete from construction projects to reduce their amount of landfill.

With a variety of ideas that FSU offers to go green, it’s obvious of how important a notion this is for college campuses in general. Students have increasingly immersed themselves into these habits of recycling and eliminating waste as much as possible. I have personally noticed that most students at FSU carry around refillable water bottles as opposed to disposable ones, which can significantly go a long way. If people continue to participate in these practices, going green across campuses will be a huge success.