Graduated And Missing Oswego? Alumni Weekend Is Almost Here!

Missing Oswego and wanting to be with your college friends? SUNY Oswego is holding an Alumni Weekend from June 8th to June 11th! Come have fun in the town where you spent some of your best years. Below is a link for registration and all of the information needed :

http://alumni.oswego.edu/s/1552/index.aspx?sid=1552&gid=1&pgid=440

Housing is still available on Campus in the newly renovated Waterbury Hall!

Staying In Oswego This Summer? Check Out These Fun Things To Do

Oswego is a beautiful place to be over the summer. There are so many fun things to do in this town over the summer. Here are the top places I recommend :

  • Bev’s Dairy Treat : One of the best ice cream places I have ever been to. It is located right on Lake Ontario, close to West Campus. I definitely recommend this place!
  • Rudy’s Lakeside Drive-In : Located right next to Bev’s, this drive-in has great seafood! You can watch the sunset while eating dinner. What can be better than that?
  • Fair Haven State Park : This is a place that I discovered with my friends this year. There is a park and beach to hang out at! It is about a half hour away from campus but definitely worth the drive!
  • Lake Ontario : Sounds silly but many people forget that when the weather gets nice, you can swim in the lake! Oswego can get very hot over the summer so cooling off in Lake Ontario is always refreshing
  • Watching the Sunsets : Oswego is famous for its sunsets. When the weather is nice over the summer, with no clouds in the sky, make sure to go down to the lake and watch the sunset!

Adjustments: Moving Back Home

“Hey, wanna go grab ice cream?” This was the question I asked my best friend Alexandra on the second day I moved back home last year. She was hanging out at my house, so we got in my car and got our chilly desserts. Approximately 10-15 minutes, I got the text. You know, the quintessential parent to child text that strikes fear in your heart.

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After getting used to the autonomy of college, I realized that I had to tell my mom my location. I told my mother and she was fine with it, but it was a wake-up call. Yeah, in college I might mention that I was grabbing dinner with friends, but the task isn’t compulsory. I realized I would have to make a key adjustment moving back home.

It’s easy to forget when you experience the kind of big lifestyle change that college provides. It is often the first big stepping stone for many and is their first taste of living on their own. The biggest recommendation I have is talking things out with your parents and understanding their expectations for you. I definitely live under a certain set of rules, but my personal growth in college has an impact as well. I have more freedom than I did in high school, but I still need to respect my parents as well.

College is certainly a great experience, but that doesn’t mean going home for the summer can’t be great, too.

 

What it’s like to graduate a semester late

Every time I hear “Are you graduating?” it chips away at me inside a little bit because the answer is, I was supposed to. I came into college as a freshman in Fall of 2013 which means that I have spent four years at this school; the stereotypical length that you’re “supposed” to stay in college for your undergrad. But who’s to say that it’s only supposed to take four years? According to the New York Times,  “only 50 of more than 580 public four year institutions graduate a majority of their full time students on time” (Lewin, 2014). That being said, I can’t help but feel a little left out when I hear my closest friends talk about what their wearing to graduation or that they just applied for their dream job. I love this school, I really do, but I have reached that point in my life where I want to be done and start my life already. Luckily, that day will come sooner than I imagine in December and I will probably regret all these feelings I have now and want to stay in school just a little while longer. That being said, there’s always a bright side to things so here’s a list of some of the benefits I came up with of having to stay an extra semester in no particular order.

  1. A chance to keep building my resume! Another semester means another opportunity to build my resume and get another internship. Considering that I have only had one internship during my college career, I am very thankful that I get another chance to apply to internships where I could learn a few more things about the broadcasting business  before I am thrust into a job. In addition to internships, it also allows me to take on roles in clubs that I haven’t had the chance to have before. For example, I just accepted a web director position at WTOP and I have held a position there before so I am very excited about being more involved in a club that has been a large part of my college years.
  2. More time to figure out what I want to do with my life! I’ve narrowed it down to two types of work that I would be interested in: literally anything on a talk show or entertainment news show, or a video editor. I would love to use this extra time to hopefully dive into a professional setting and see if I would really like to do what I think I want to do now.
  3. A chance to finally get a car! Since I am not graduating and my loans are deferred to six months after I graduate, this now means that instead of starting to pay back my loans in November, I will have to start paying them back in June. What this really means to me is I will finally get the chance to buy my first car! I’ve been saving up for years and never had enough to buy a car on my own and the thought that I have to pay back loans was casting a huge cloud over my decision to buy a car after graduation. Although it only gives me the summer and one more semester to save up money for post grad life, a car is a necessary purchase to get to and from a summer job and a potential job in the future so that’s how i’m justifying it.
  4.  More free food! I work in the dining hall so everytime I go into work we are allowed to eat a meal even if we do not have a meal plan. That means that approximately three times a week I get a free lunch. When you figure that out for the semester, that saves me a ton of money in comparison to if I were to be out of college and buying my own groceries for the entire week.
  5.  More time living on my own! After college I will most definitely have to temporarily move back home for financial purposes so it will help me retain a bit more of my sanity being away from my family a little longer, I’m kidding! However, I really enjoy living with my friends and am thankful that I will have another couple of months with them.

Although many people take having to stay an extra semester negatively, if you look at it in a positive light it will help you deal with having to stay in school longer than you would’ve liked.  I have one more semester to get my act together and decide what I would like to do with my life! Until then, I’m trying to take nothing for granted and take every opportunity I can get.

What I’m taking away from college

IMG_8413As I’m sitting here trying to ignore how fast the clock is ticking, I’m reminded of all of the incredible experiences and memories I’ve had on this beautiful campus over the past four years. I’m taking away so much from my time here, and truly know that I am a vastly different person than I was at the start of my freshman year. I am proud of who I have become, but I know that I could not have become this person if I hadn’t made that initial decision to attend school here.

I am proud of all of the hard work that I have put into my degree and will be happily graduating in a few weeks with dual degrees in Marketing and Public Relations. Through the classroom lessons, professors, and internships, I am prepared to start a career in advertising. Let me tell you, it feels good to say that confidently. I am leaving college with a lot more than a degree. It truly is the lessons you learn outside of the classroom that matter the most.

I’m leaving with memories of the best four years I could have EVER asked for. There’s something amazing about this place. It’s more than the scenery of Lake Ontario and it’s more than the school itself. It’s really about the sense of belonging you gain here. I felt like myself at this school, only a better version of that person. I’ve learned how to be independent, how to stand up for myself, and appreciate who I am as a person.

I’m leaving with a sense of adventure. Sometimes, no matter how much homework you have, it’s important to just get up and be spontaneous, take a drive, or even host your own food eating contest (I may or may not hold a pretty decent chicken nugget record). Even if I may not be good at some things, I can at least say that I tried my best.

IMG_0353I’m leaving having met the greatest people on this Earth (shoutout to my O.G. 3rd floor Scales crew). My friends are amazing and I can’t wait to see where life takes them. My appreciation for them can never be vocalized enough. Last night, we played our last intramural sports game together. If you knew me four years ago, you’d know that I wouldn’t have been sad about this. Flash forward to last night and I’m standing on the court fighting back the tears. My best friend is the one who encouraged me to play a sport for the first time, and after playing in many many games, I’m happy to have friends like her to encourage me because I had more fun than I could have ever imagined. College is about finding the people who inspire you and love you even at your worst moments. To me it’s the memories of dancing like idiots, late night food runs, shopping through each other’s closets, hours of Netflix, and laughing until our stomachs hurt that I will remember the most.

So here’s to you SUNY Oswego. I may be leaving, but you will always be a part of me no matter where this crazy world takes me.

Active Minds: Being a Co-President

Good evening everybody! Today I wanted to write about my experience being one of the Presidents of Active Minds at SUNY Oswego. For those of you who do not know, Active Minds is a national organization whose goal is to reduce the stigma of mental illness and help people access the resources that they need.

I first joined Active Minds my second semester Freshman year. My roommate at the time was thinking about declaring her major as human development and had heard about a mental health club called Active Minds. I remember walking into the room being really nervous about joining a group in the middle of the semester but once I walked into the room I felt much better about my decision because everyone was so nice. I had attempted to join a different club with my roommate earlier in the semester but still a few weeks in and had a strange experience where I felt like I was intruding on a group of friends hanging out so I was very relieved that Active Minds felt nothing like this. One of the things that really drew me to Active Minds was how they were trying to get the word out on how common mental health issues are. I struggled with anxiety and depression throughout high school and did not know anyone in any of my classes going through the same things as me. Active Minds made me feel better by making it known how common mental illness really is, for crying out loud we give out buttons that say how common it is (1 in 4, meaning 1 in 4 people have a mental illness)!

My memories from Active Minds include participating in Send Silence Packing, which is a display of backpacks that represent the number of suicides on college campuses each year, “Get Scrambled” which was a stress reliever where we threw eggs with our stressors written on them at a tarp on the wall in front of Tyler Hall, as well as going to weekly meetings with a bunch of people who wanted to help people understand mental illness as much as I wanted to.

After a semester, I became secretary of Active Minds and started a twitter account for our chapter. I remember being happy to have been elected to this position because it meant that I could be more involved with the club. I went to every meeting and would send out meeting reminders before the meeting through our email list and on our twitter. I would also send out the meeting notes to members who could not make it to the meeting due to class or illness. Then at the end of my junior year, I was elected to take over for our former Co President who graduated and got the chance to run the meetings which I have been doing since then. I really liked the freedom to talk about whatever topics I wanted in the realm of Active Minds and I still do! Although it can get frustrating being President like when budgets don’t go through or when we do not get a good turn out at a meeting, knowing that I have the ability to make a difference on campus is something that I will always appreciate getting the opportunity to do.

Circle Of Sisterhood

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The SUNY Oswego National Sororities on campus have adopted their first philanthropy. This philanthropy is called “Circle Of Sisterhood Foundation”. This foundation is not for profit that is ran by sorority women who intend to remove those barriers all over the world. Giving women and children all equal opportunities to educate. Without proper education you are far from likely to succeed.

Being that the sorority women here at SUNY Oswego do have the opportunity to be educated they see how important it is for everyone to have that too. Every female in this world deserves to have the chance to be a change in the world. All the sororities that are participating in Circle of Sisterhood have been educated on why this is so important to us.

We are going to spread awareness, make a difference, and be the change.

 

Giving back in a different way

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One of my favorite things to do at WTOP-10, aside from producing news and working crew positions, is giving tours of the studio to potential students. It’s a great way to let people see what’s inside our recently upgraded high definition studio and let people know more about the station than just what is told on the general tours. Admitted students days and open houses are the prime of studio tours, which is why you can tell from my enthusiasm on those days how much I love giving studio tours.

April 8th was the first admitted students day for all majors and by far my favorite tour I’ve given so far. Me and some of the other Toppers (as we like call them) started giving tours of the studio after the information tabling session in the ice arena.

At around 1:00 PM-ish, a whole group of nine or ten transfer students from Suffolk County Community College came in and were so excited to see the studio. Me and the other Toppers gave the general info and tour we give to potential broadcasting students, but it didn’t stop there.  The questions became more specific and the students become so intrigued by every answer we gave them. They were so excited about the studio and working at the station, they were there hanging about for about 45 minutes wanting to know more. I was even able to talk to a few of them more as I guided them to Onondaga Hall during my walk back home.

During the time the SCCC students were in the studio, a curious meteorology student who was separate from the group came in. I greeted her at the door and let her in. I talked to her for a few minutes about our WSI weather graphics system we use at the station and how many professional stations use it as well as how our system of choosing meteorologists works.

When I usually give tours of the station, I try to make them as interactive as possible depending on the person’s interest. For meteorology students, I would let them try to do the weather on our green screen. I asked the girl if she wanted to give weather a shot and she immediately jumped at the idea. I got her set up on the green screen, handed her the WSI remote, and let her go on her way.

After she did the weather, she told me she was committed to coming to Oswego and was even more excited to do it for real when she comes here. While I won’t be able to see her in the fall, I wish I could be there to see her enthusiasm if she becomes one of WTOP-10’s meteorologists.

I didn’t really get much of a tour of the studio during my visits. When I was finally able to join my first year, I was so amazed to see it. My friend told me if it wasn’t for the tour of WTOP-10 he got during his visit, he may not have came to Oswego at all. It’s wonderful to know how much of a difference you can make by giving a more in depth tour to someone dedicated to their field, whether it’s broadcasting or meteorology.

Al Roker return(ed)s!

Students crowd Al Roker after breaking the world record

Students crowd Al Roker after breaking the world record; Photo courtesy of Chuck Perkins

If you’ve been paying attention to our social media or The Today Show at all this past week, you may have noticed we had a certain special guest on campus Friday morning. Al Roker, returned to campus to broadcast an attempt to break the world record for the longest conga line on ice. The entire event was broadcasted live on the today show starting at around 8AM and only going to about 9AM. What you didn’t see was all the behind the scenes work that went into it, including the meetings and the practices. It was a long and exciting week that lead up to the morning of so let me walk you through it!

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Rokerthon Caps Off Tour at Oswego

Did you happen to catch the familiar green and gold while sipping on your morning coffee? No, your 8 a.m. eyes didn’t deceive you, SUNY Oswego was on the Today Show. In fact, we were pretty busy breaking a world record. Rome may not have been built in a day, but we broke a world record in 5 minutes. Okay, that’s only technically true, but it isn’t the whole story…

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We managed to get 593 skaters to show up at the Marano Campus Center Arena at 4:45 a.m. in preparation for the national broadcast. Who knew you could get 593 to conga across ice to Gloria Estefan so early in the morning? The celebration was splendid, but more than what meets the eye went into putting on an event that sometimes felt like the circus- “The Greatest Show on Earth!”

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Aside from mandatory rehearsals for skaters, it was all hands on deck from virtually all departments on campus. If if wasn’t ice skating recruitment calls which took place in the dining and residence halls, it was working on the broadcast itself. The theatre department set up the lights and came up with the idea of snow machines for Al Roker’s zamboni entrance!

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(He rode in on a bigger zamboni. Team Mini still looked great!)

It would be misleading to say the event was easy. The amount of coordination and organization was Hurculean. It was exhausting, but man, if it wasn’t pretty darn cool. Some were there for Al, some were there for the fun of it, some (like me) got to geek out over the process of national TV (live-to-broadcast drones anyone?!?!). Our student media organizations were able to get interviews with Mr. Roker and develop great material. Del Sarte, the student dance club, brought signs that were cleverly themed to incorporate their recital and NBC. Everyone got to have a unique stamp on the day. Al even visited all of his old haunts around Oswego and campus on Friday!

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(If you go back and watch the recording, you can catch me darting through crowds to run the social media beat!)

The effort on behalf of the student body, administration, and community was incredible. Oswego absolutely has its moments and is a unique place. Why would we get selected out of so many large universities across the nation and Al Roker come back if it wasn’t?