college

Decision Time: Choosing the Right College for You!

May 28, 2015 in Campus Life, Colleges

URI Field

URI Field

I’m sure almost every college student will agree with me when I say, deciding what college or university to attend is a nightmare. You’ve got mom thinking she knows everything about college applications (she wants to review your college essay before you send it out every time), dad who wants nothing more than to see you carry out his legacy of attending the same university he did and then there’s your sibling, offering useless advice that only pertains to the college scene he/she think is fitting for you (what do they know anyway?).

I’m here to tell you it’s okay to not agree with any of your family members throughout this process. At the end of the day this is your life and the next four years are going to reflect the decision you make of what college or university you will attend. Take the time to consider their advice, but ultimately it is up to you.

My plan was typical to that of an average high school senior. I applied to a few schools, some of which were academically out of my reach (that’s okay) and some of which my friends were all certain we would end up at, together (that rarely happens). The best thing I ever did was apply to multiple universities in different locations around the Northeast, including SUNY Binghamton, UCONN Storrs and others. I knew I didn’t want to go too far, which helped me narrow down my choices. It’s important to have an idea of where you want to end up geographically, but don’t worry if by the end of this process you have changed your mind.

I made the decision to attend the University of Rhode Island (rhody rhody rhody!) for a few different reasons. First off, if you haven’t met any Rhode Island natives, well then you’re just missing out on some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. Friendly smiles everywhere you go to genuine conversations with people you know absolutely nothing about, the atmosphere in and around campus is infectious. Once spring rolls around, you’ll find most of the student body hanging out on the Quad throughout the day. This small park located in the heart of our campus brings students and faculty together, creating an energetic and welcoming environment.

URI Quad

URI Quad

Secondly, most students attending URI will tell you that what surrounds our university is what makes our time spent there most enjoyable and unforgettable. When I first applied, I had not realized there was a beach located fifteen minutes from my campus in the town of Narragansett. I also didn’t realize that you could find a restaurant that served fresh lobster rolls at about every street corner. Let me tell you something about the seafood in Rhode Island. Not only is it fresh, but I have seen lobster served in so many forms, I’ve lost count. From lobster rolls to lobster quesadillas and my all time favorite – lobster pizza.

For me, it was an easy decision. I was lucky enough to have made a connection with the university, the people and the community. I don’t think you can ask for more when looking to establish an educational path. My suggestions include keeping an open mind and taking into consideration the advice those around you offer. Sometimes mom is right when she tells you not to go too far because you’ll get home sick (believe me you’ll miss those home cooked meals). Dad may also know a thing or two about college because let’s face it, he was once in your shoes. With all that advice in mind, don’t forget to listen to your own intuition because your gut feeling will lead you in the right direction and who knows you may end up a fellow Rhody Ram!

TV for College Students?

May 13, 2015 in Alive Campus

TVAs a cadet at the Virginia Military Institute with a hectic schedule, there isn’t much time to watch TV shows. Most cadets really do not have the time to watch the shows they wish they could, or they skip their homework and binge watch their favorite show and watch their GPA suffer because of it. However, on rare occasions when cadets do get free time they have their favorite shows they like to watch on Netflix.

I myself never really watched many TV shows before getting to college. I would much rather watch a movie any day. Additionally, I do not have Netflix and we are not allowed to have TVs in our rooms. Therefore, I do not have access to watch any TV shows. However, the one TV show that I like to watch, So You Think You Can Dance, takes place during the summer so I am usually able to watch it. If you are into contest TV shows and like any type of dancing, then this is the show for you. It is similar to Dancing with the Stars, but the contestants are not celebrities. Contestants compete in all genres of dance in order to be named America’s Favorite Dancer. It’s such a great show, but is not for everyone.

Now for the more up-to-date cadets that are on top of all the hottest TV shows, like my roommates, here are the TV shows you need to be watching according to them.

1. Breaking Bad: This show is about a chemistry teacher who is diagnosed with terminal cancer and teams up with a student to make meth. Need I explain more?

2. House of Cards: This show is about a congressman who works with his wife to seek revenge on the people who betrayed him. Sounds rather conniving, doesn’t it?

3. American Horror Story: This TV show probably beats them all. This is one of my roommates’ favorite shows. The plot of the show is about a family that moves into a haunted house haunted by demonic creatures. So if you are into scary movies, I would say this is the show for you.

4. The Walking Dead: This show is my other roommates’ favorite show. The general plot is about people trying to survive after a zombie apocalypse. So if you like zombies then this is the show for you.

5. Game of Thrones: This seems to be the show that everyone is talking about. It is a medieval fantasy epic about two powerful families playing a deadly game for control of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. So if you are into medieval fantasy I would say this is the show for you.

6. Orange is the New Black: This is another show that everyone seems to be talking about. It is about a woman running from her past. She is a powerful businesswoman, but is put behind bars for her association with a drug runner 10 years earlier. She soon makes her way through the corrections system and adjusts to life behind bars making friends with many eccentric and unexpected people.

Overall, these shows seem to be currently on the hot list right now, so if you have the time or are looking for something to watch in your free time you might give these a try.

Job Searching

May 8, 2015 in Alive Campus, Career

Once we reach adolescences, our parents are most likely encouraging us to get a part-time job. It is most likely that we would end up working in a retail store like CVS or Walgreens. The lucky ones would end up with a job that is more office like such as a secretary assistance or something in that nature. Once we reach college, we would like, as adults a more fitting job for us such as working in a library, or as a full secretary in a office.  There are others that like to look for jobs that are related to their major, so this way, they will have a feeling of their future jobs and/or gain more experience. Here are some good website where to look for a different jobs while in college and even after graduating college (yet, I believe the best way in getting a dream job is through connections, but as college students we are working on building that connection through out our college years):

Jobs and Internships

Jobs and Internships

Indeed.com: This job searching website is great for finding any kind of job from working as a waitresses to an accountant assistance. There are plenty of job offers and posting of jobs every day. This website is perfect for students who are currently in college or recent graduates and even people who just graduated from high school. There is a job opportunity for everyone, so people should take advantage of this amazing website.

Note: The key to getting back from a job is to have a great resume AND a cover letter.  A piece of advice, if you apply to numerous jobs at the same time and use the same cover letter then it is most likely that none will contact you back because a cover letter, as most of the people reading this know, is a introduction to your skills, but also your enthusiastic towards being part of their team, so information about their company is needed in each cover letter to let them know you really are interested in getting hired.

Monster.com: Another great website to search for a variety of jobs. There are millions of jobs posted every day in in this website, so if you want to look for a job that is related to your interest or major then this is a website to check out.

Internships.com: This website is more for internships than for a job offer, but may lead to a full time job offer after graduation. Internships are great for college students to gain experience that will help them after graduating from undergraduate. There are two kinds of internships, paid and non-paid. Some students aim for a paid internships, but I recommend a non-paid internship because it will show that you are doing an internships for the learning experience and not for the paycheck they are offering.

Jobs are important for college students because they help build connections  and are essential to gain more experience for the career that you chose.

Post Graduation Thoughts

May 8, 2015 in Alive Campus, Career, Colleges

I graduate college in 8 days, which is a very scary thought. It hasn’t quite hit me yet though, and I feel like it’s still months away from happening. My friends and I keep joking about stupid things and sort of pretending to get emotional about it, but none of us really wants to admit that we’re scared, nervous, and a little bit sad. Of course, we’re mostly excited, but I’ve never really felt the term “bittersweet” hit me more than at this point in my life. I remember the first time I stepped onto this campus so perfectly. I remember what I was wearing, what I was feeling, and how I saw life through my eyes then. It’s crazy to think that since that point a million things have happened that have led me to this exact position, on my free couch, writing this article…

graduation

graduation

I’m not scared to leave school for the traditional reasons that most people are. I’m not really worried about finding a job, or finding a place to live or any of that stuff. I know that things happen and that things fall into place. I’m mostly scared because school is what I’ve been good at my entire life and I’m not really sure how to live without it. I’ve been in school for nearly 17 YEARS, and because of that I have grown to love certain aspects of it. I love the uneasiness of walking into a class for the first time, the jampacked schedule, order, deadlines, final results, grades, learning, being confused and then figuring it out. It sounds weird but I have learned to love being in school, and I learned how to be good at it. I’m the type of person that NEEDS to physically write down a list and cross an item off once it is complete, the person that has to do things in a certain order without missing a step.

Here’s the thing I’m not so good at: Life. It’s like when they say you’re either “book smart” or “street smart”, and I definitely skew FAR to the book smart side. You can’t write down life in your planner, there are no guaranteed due dates, there is no final result or grade. I’ve been in school for so long, planning, meeting every deadline, that I’m afraid that I don’t know how to live life. Obviously I am going to get a job and probably move and start a life somewhere, but then what? What do I even know?

College has been my outlet for my need of order, predictability and comfort. When I graduate, there will be no classes at specific times, no Thursday nights that start promptly at 11pm, no final schedule dates to cram for. There will just be life. The most constant and scheduled thing in my life will be the time I go to work and the time I leave, and even that will change.

Basically, I am scared that I will be handed countless opportunities to do great things and experience great things but that I will push them aside because they don’t “fit” into my schedule. I don’t want my need of order and the expectations of doing “what’s next” to hinder my life after graduation. I hope that I can learn to live life, rather than just planning it out.

Being organized and planning every single detail certainly paid off in college, but how helpful will that really be for me in the real world? Hopefully I can trade my planner in for some unforgettable and “unplanned” experiences…

A Day in the Life of a College Kid

April 24, 2015 in Academics, Alive Campus, Campus Life

What's your day like?

What’s your day like?

College schedules are either the best or the worst, depending on your luck of the draw come registration time. Depending on what you prefer, your schedule could be crazy busy or low key. For me, my schedule is all about balancing everything out so that I can do everything I want to do without being completely stretched too thin. Here is my weekly schedule at school to put it into perspective:

Monday/Wednesday

Monday’s and Wednesday’s are conveniently my busiest days of the week. I scheduled 4 out of my 5 classes on these days so that I would be able to work at my two jobs. These days go as follows:

9:00 AM – Get up and get ready for class

10:30 AM – Consumer marketing behavior class

11:30 AM – Poetry class

12:30 PM – Social Media Marketing class

1:30 – 3:20 PM – Graphic Design

5:00 – 10:00 PM – Work at Job 1 (retail)

On these days, I can usually never get much done because I am literally going nonstop all day with a short break before work. Sometimes it’s nice to get these days over with because I feel like I have accomplished a lot, but other times it can just be exhausting. I also usually have a lot of tests and things due on these days so they can be overwhelming. I usually eat once before all of my classes, bring a snack between social media marketing and graphic design, and the bring something to eat at work.

Tuesday/Thursday

These are my less stressful days of the week, but I am still pretty busy. These days go as follows:

8:00 AM – Get up and get ready for class

10:00 – 11:15 AM – Business strategy class

12:00 – 4:30 PM – Job number 2 (office)

These are definitely my homework days and “get stuff done” days. But, being in college, Thursdays are also the night to go out, so by the time I get home from work at 5, eat dinner and relax, I am already getting ready to go out for the night. So, I guess you could say that Tuesday is the most productive day for me.

Friday

9:00 AM – Get up and get ready for class

10:30 AM – Consumer marketing behavior class

11:30 AM – Poetry class

12:30 PM – Social Media Marketing class

Friday’s are my favorite day because it means that the weekend is here and I also have 3 classes and no work. While Fridays should be my productive day, I am usually so beat from the week that I use the extra time for relaxing before the weekend takes off. Usually if I have a lot of stuff due the next week I try to get it done on Friday during the day instead of Saturday or Sunday.

So there you have it, my typical week as a college student. Depending on what year you are in school, your schedule could be very different. If you’re a freshman, you will probably have a lot more free time, but as you grow into a senior you will be getting internships and jobs that you have to fit into your schedule. Good Luck!