future

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…

by Devin

Ten Things to do to Prepare for Graduation

June 15, 2014 in Academics, Alive Campus, Campus Life, Career, Top 10 Lists

  1. Talk to you advisor. Do not think you are annoying by constantly emailing them, asking them questions, or setting up meetings.  If you have a good advisor they can be your biggest asset.  Unlike you they have done this before.  They have helped other students prepare for graduation and they have done it themselves.  They likely have a lot of contacts so use that to your advantage.
  2. Get your references ready.   You don’t want to start applying for jobs and suddenly realize you have absolutely no idea who your best reference will be and you want your reference to be prepared when they are contacted.
  3. Start looking.  Even if you not ready to apply for jobs just yet, take a look at what is out there; it cannot hurt.  There are so many job titles you probably have never even heard of.
  4. Get some experiences.  I know my school and major required me to have an internship before I graduated but even if your school doesn’t, get one anyway.  There is no such thing as too much experiences.  And even if your school does require one, do an extra one.
  5. Work on your résumé.  Go to you career center or visit your advisor and ask them to review your résumé.  Résumés need to be weirdly specific and you do not want your résumé be the reason you did not get your dream job.
  6. In regards to you résumé, work on enhancing it.  Join a club, take on a leadership position, take another internship or job, volunteer, pick activities you think might look good on your résumé.  Adding a little something extra to your résumé can’t hurt.
  7. Work hard.  If you are going to grad school your GPA is really important so do not slack off.  Even if you are not going to grad school employers will occasionally look at your GPA; you do not want them to see you gave up your senior year.
  8. Hangout with your friends and roommates as much as possible.  Once you graduate you are not going to see these people everyday.  Make the most of your time with them.  Put aside silly differences.  Forgive and forget, and just enjoy your last year of college with them.
  9. Have fun.  Soon you are going to graduate and either you are going to go on to graduate school, which is just the academic side of college with way less partying or you are going to get a job.  Either way people are going to actually look at you as an adult and they are going to expect that you have your life figured out and expect you to act responsibly.   So go crazy while you can and live it up.
  10. Peruse your passions.  Do what you want to do.  Do not let someone tell you, “your dreams are stupid” or that “your dream job is not practical.”  Do what you want to do and what is going to make you happy.  Who cares what other people think?

    Getting ready for the big day

    Getting ready for the big day

To Prospects of Life and an Alive Campus Farewell

February 5, 2014 in Academics, Admissions, Alive Campus, Campus Life, Career, Colleges, Events, Health, Infographics, Love, Reviews, Sports, Style, Tech, Travel

Hello Camper,

Aim and shoot for beyond the stars…

Alive Campus provides an awesome experience for individuals receiving and sharing information about their colleges. It provides an avenue for incoming freshmen, transfers and overall prospects to view an institution in light of the person-student. It is better than a commercial about an institution that attempts to sell the environment to the student. Still- the able, productive and willing student will learn to use an institution as a useful platform: Students excelling in academics and sports will be able to promote their selves through the institution or their merits for their personal reasons. College may be an expensive or inexpensive experience but SallieMae is always willing to assist the educational process toward their profitable return.

Every collegiate institution will vary by academia, cultures, privatization, religions, regulations and traditions. My attendance from Lock Haven University to Centenary College has been a fulfilling and tremendous rollercoaster of experience. El Torro and Kingda Ka in a blizzard cannot compare with my college tumbling experience. After completing then paying for one class and test I will have the opportunity to graduate from Centenary College in May, elated.

It has been a great experience writing for Alive Campus. It will no longer be my place to discuss Centenary College’s environment as I improve away from it. I do have bits of advice for individuals seeking to attend an institution or transfer from an institution. The future is changing dramatically with the variety of institutions available; chiropractic, culinary, dog training, masseuse, music and etc. type of schools exist for individuals seeking a particular career path of growth.

Do not rush any decision about the future. If you feel an inclination toward a different direction for your life then find the avenues prospering in the direction of your inclination. If you are unsure about attending a large university then attend a community college to save money and receive half (or more) of the credits at a four year college. You will have enough time to think and prepare financially for the future ahead of you without risking valuable time especially since community colleges are very affordable avenues. The one class I am taking at Centenary is more than my co-worker’s semester tuition at a community college.

Don’t let others make decisions about your life either: If they’re not offering financial backing and a place in their home with their advice about your future then take their advice like an open wound with a grain of salt; take careful thought thinking about the next steps in your future. Don’t rush your life. Advice is another option to think about especially when various walks of life will have advice readily available for a variety of purposes. Be patient thinking about decisions, and even more patient making those decisions, to enhance your life in the long run.

I hope the future progresses well for every individual!

It will progress well if you take your time for its true value.

Time is not money: It is your life.

Onward and Upward,

Kevin Dufresne

www.kdufresne.me

Thank you Radek Janowski and Alive Campers for being amazing and useful!

The Future is Augmented

October 11, 2013 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Tech

At this point, it’s quite impossible to take a stroll around a college campus without seeing at least a dozen students engaging with some sort of technological device. Phones, laptops, iPads, top-of-the-line headphones, et cetera. There’s a device for what seems like everything, and everyone that can get their hands on them is doing so. It’s trendy, it’s cool, and it’s unspeakably useful. Say what you will about people becoming addicted to their devices—you can’t really blame them, can you? They really do make life easier, more efficient. They help us to get things done, to communicate with people, and to remember important dates.

I’m definitely not going to talk about how technology has made people more antisocial. I think that’s a figment of the frightened imaginations of older generations, generations who have not been “raised” by all this technological wonder.

And I also know that at some point, our generation will fall into that category. The technology of our children and children’s children will be so astounding, it’s quite likely that many of us will fear it and blame it for the degradation of society like our grandparents do. We do have the advantage of being raised by technology, though, and that means as new technology comes out, we’ll be savvy enough to learn how to use it. That means, I think, that eventually the idea of technology being a hindrance to human interaction will be destroyed forever!

So we all know what kinds of devices people are using around campus. Our devices have been out for a while, now. But what kinds of technologies will we be seeing next? Now that is the interesting question. And it’s a question with thrilling answers. There is a wide range of futuristic gadgetry coming our way very soon that will make interaction more interesting and education more exciting.

Think of how awesome history lessons could be with this…

First I want to talk about the Oculus Rift. This is already available for purchase, and at a fair price, too. Essentially, it’s virtual reality goggles. This is the thing people think of when they just hear the words “virtual reality,” and here it is in real life. You put the goggles on, and you can view worlds of nearly photorealistic visual quality, and explore them as if you were really there. With a pair of headphones on, it’s hard not to feel totally immersed. You use a controller or keyboard to actually walk around, but turning your head will change your view. You can see videos on Youtube of people using the Oculus Rift, and it’s clear the immersion factor is very realistic. I think this will be something we’ll see within every dormitory on any given college campus, especially for anyone that plays video games on a regular basis (most college students).

But even more interesting (and useful) is the burgeoning and rapidly-advancing realm of augmented reality. With a viewing device in front of your eyes, you can see things that aren’t really there–a chess board, a pottery wheel, hidden buttons, anything. Google Glass is currently at the forefront of this tech front, but the problem with Google Glass is that it only works in a small part of your vision. Luckily, there are other options being developed that work within your entire field of vision. Two people wearing the device can sit across from each other at a table and play a game of chess that no one else can see (imagine the potential for this). Or you could use your hands to sculpt a vase in mid-air, right in front of you, and choose the colors and designs on it—and then use a 3D printer to literally print out the pot you just designed. The potential this has within art classrooms is huge. An art student could practice using in augmented reality, and then make their final product using actual clay or stone, saving them and the art department untold sums of money on materials.

Soon we can all walk around in a cyberpunk technoscape!

The coolest advance in augmented reality has to be the high-tech contact lenses. They’ll be on the market relatively soon, and they will allow for one to access augmented reality at all times. This means we could all be walking around in a futuristic cyberpunk world like in the movies sooner than we know it!

There has even been developed a fully-functioning program for rocket designing. Yes, actual rockets. Scientists can use just their hands and a holographic image in front of them to build freaking rockets. If you didn’t think we’re living in the future yet, you should now.

I think the time of smartphones is coming to an end. It’s old news. Seeing people with their faces shoved into phones all over campus is no longer a surprising sight. And I think the new technology coming out will take us back to a more face-to-face connectivity—we won’t need to hold little screens in our hands anymore. Good news for our necks. And the potential these technologies have for enhancing learning—and just making it more interesting and hands-on (sort of)—is limitless. The future is now.

This is what rocket science looks like now.

by Abby

Free Time: Does it Exist? How Should it be Spent?

April 4, 2013 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Career

What do I do in my free time?  I spent a long time thinking about what the right answer to this question might be.  Should I say that I spend my weekends at parties and various social events until the wee hours of the morning?  Or would that make me seem like a careless, stereotypical college student?  Should I say that I spend the majority of my time sitting at home writing?  Or would that make me sound like a pretentious, anti-social person?  I’ve come to the conclusion that there is no right answer.  So I’ve decided to go with the truth.

Do I go out to parties sometimes?  Yes.  Do I sit at home and write sometimes.  Yes– obviously, that’s what I’m doing now.  But it’s not like I do either of these things in excess.  Mostly, I feel like I do pretty normal-person things in my free time.  I go out to the store to just get out of the apartment and stock up on food and toiletries, I watch bad reality TV with my roommate, I scroll through Tumblr and watch Youtube videos, and I read just for the fun of it.  I know it doesn’t sound very exciting, but that’s just the thing– college isn’t over the top exciting like movies and TV make it out to be.  Sometimes it is what with the parties and clubs and new experiences.  But the main experience of college is the transition into becoming an adult.

It’s hard to say what I do in my free time because it mostly feels like free time doesn’t exist.  That will probably sound ridiculous to some people.  My dad always says that college is when you have the most free time.  But the truth is, whenever I’m sitting at the movies with friends or at home watching a re-run of the Kardashians, in the back of my mind I’m always constantly stressing about classes or worse– life after classes.  Generally, in my “free” time I’m stressing about how I should be applying for jobs or tweaking my resume.  I suppose that maybe that’s a mark of maturity, but I don’t necessarily think it’s healthy.

How can it be healthy to be obsessed so much with the future?  My favorite author, John Green, wrote in his debut novel, Looking for Alaska (Which is astonishingly beautiful by the way.  If you have free time right now go read it!), that “imagining the future is a kind of nostalgia,” which I think pretty much sums up what’s wrong with my whole existential crisis problem I have going on.  A little bit of nostalgia is good.  It reminds you where you’ve come from or in the case of the “future nostalgia,” where you want to go.  But too much of it can make you yearn for something you can’t have– or you can’t presently have anyway.  So I suggest trying your best not to stress too much about the future and keep your free time as free as you can.  When you’re hanging out with friends actually be there with your friends mentally.  Because those silly, unexpectedly fun moments of free time you get to spend with them are going to be the most enjoyable and memorable parts of college life.  Don’t tarnish them with worry.

But for real, if you need something to do with you free time, read Looking for Alaska...or any of the other novels I have pictured here on my bookshelf for that matter.

But for real, if you need something to do with you free time, read Looking for Alaska…or any of the other novels I have pictured here on my bookshelf for that matter.