Packing To Go Home? These Tips Will Save You Time Packing!

Having trouble staying organized when packing to go home? Here are some tips I have learned that made packing a lot easier!

  1. Fold Your Clothes – It seems really easy to just throw clothes into a bag without folding them because packing can take a while. This makes unpacking everything really difficult. Fold your clothes and put it into your bags! Simple, but very affective.
  2. Put Similar Clothes In The Same Bag – Putting t-shirts together in the same bag and pants in a separate one will help make everything more organized. Most people put these clothing items in separate drawers so separating it makes it easier to pack. All of the clothes going into each drawer are already together.
  3. Leave Your Clothing On Hangers – This tip will save you tons of time! Instead of taking clothing off of hangers, packing it, and then putting it back on hangers, put the hangers on a metal rod. These rods hold the hangers and allow clothes to stay on them, making the process of unpacking a lot easier.

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.

 

Stressed for finals? Check out these great activities!

The end of the semester is a very stressful time for most students. Penfield Library is partnering with the Counseling Center, Lifestyles Center, and Auxiliary Services to provide  a number of stress relief activities! Below are the dates for next weeks activities :

May 8th and 9th:

Stress Relief Tables
10am – 2pm, Library Lobby
Coloring, Jenga, Help from a counselor, info on test anxiety, and more
Guided Relaxation Sessions
10am-10:15am, 1:15pm-1:30pm, Library Classroom 2
Calm yourself and focus before exams with guided relaxation
FREE COFFEE & SNACKS 
7pm, Lake Effect Cafe
These may go fast so get here early!

 

Good luck to everyone with finals! 

 

 

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.

Orientation Tips

Hi my name is Jessica and I’m a soon to be graduating senior. I’ve learned a lot of things going to SUNY Oswego these past four years and I would love to share some of those experiences with you. When I first looked at Oswego’s campus, I knew this was the college for me. Between the great dorm buildings, sunsets, lake, and variety of programs for my major, I knew from the start this is where I wanted to spend the next four years of my life. A really important thing for me was getting a close group of friends when coming to college. Orientation (which some of you are going to soon) was a great way to meet people. What made me feel better about introducing myself was that I knew everyone was in the same boat as me meaning that everyone was looking to make new friends. The Laker Leaders (leaders of the orientation groups) made it a really fun experience. To this day I still hang out with a lot of the people I met at orientation. My one tip is : when coming to college just be yourself. There will always be people that have the same hobbies, interests, and humor as you so do not change to fit in.

The best of Dublin and Galway

And on the 8th day god said ” what a boring bunch these humans are. Let there be fun & laughter in the world!” so he created the Irish. That’s exactly what my trip to Ireland consisted of fun, laughter and Guinness. Here are some things to expect on your journey to Dublin. Guinness in Dublin was so different (better) than Guinness in the us,  it was smooth and had a unique taste that you could only get in Ireland (or so the Irish claim.) Be prepared for the music! Got to love… or try to love the Irish music because it is definitely part of the experience. If you say you’re from NY especially down state, you’ll get asked something along the lines of “ have you ever been to O’Malley’s pub in queens?? My friend Brian O’Malley owns it” assuming you know all the Irish people in the tri-state area.

Hostel

We stayed at Pillar B&B, it was… okay. For the price I can’t complain because we knew what we would be getting when we booked last-minute so lots was sold out. I recommend booking a hostel as soon as you book your flight to Dublin, we waited too long and got the last pickings.

The Sites

Used tourist info to buy a bus tour to the Cliff of Moher and Galway, around 45$ but completely worth it! The people were so helpful at the info next to the Arlington Hotel.

Arlington Hotel – We went to the Celtic Nights show, originally 30$ for dinner and the show, but because they had space they let us in just for the show for 10$. The show was amazing, I totally recommend it. They had a traditional Irish band ( fiddle, singer, violin, guitar) and Irish step dancers! The band had the audience singing and dancing along with them all night!

The colored doors – this isn’t really a site just something to see. The Irish people were ordered by England to paint their doors black but instead they colored them every other color in revolt! Another story is that because the houses look very similar they colored the doors so that when they walked home from the pub after they have had too many they can go to the right house.

Guinness storehouse – Very cool if you’re into beer or not. There are 7 floors each with a different experience! Have to try the tasting experience (they give you three different types of beer) and the aroma room! Make sure you have enough time to spend there, I didn’t and ended up rushing the whole thing.

***Be aware 1. Line… SUPER long, try to go as early as possible or buy tickets in advance. 2. With your entrance ticket (17 euros or so) you get a free drink, but this is ONE free drink! So there are three places you can use your drink ticket, the tasting room, the top floor (great view) or to learn how to pour your own Guinness. I do not suggest using this ticket for learning how to pour your own beer, if you mess it up and make it all foamy there is no going back.

Cliffs of Mohr- absolutely breathtaking, we spent about 3 hours there walking along the cliffs! Very windy so dress accordingly but definitely a worthwhile experience.

Doolin Beach- This was a stop on our way to Galway, the beach was made up of all rocks but the blue water along with the green hills made the drive very scenic. Plus we got to see some of the original cottages with no doors only windows (tax reasons!) Most made out of rocks so it was like a glimpse into the past.

To eat/Drink

Lotts Café/ Bar- Very nice restaurant with great service! We got the Coddle, which is a dish that you can only get in Dublin. It was boiled sausage in broth served with homemade Guinness bread. Worth a try!

Temple Bar- Very cool old bar but biggggg tourist attraction!! Beer gets more expensive as the night goes on, so I suggest going to temple bar early (before it gets too packed) and then going to other pubs on that street. Most pubs have live music which was so much fun!

The Trinity Bar – Best pub I have ever been to! They had lots of space and a new musician who sang everything under the sun! He sang mix’s of songs that all led into each other which had us all on our toes! He sang pop from Britney Spears to Nicki Minaj and Drake, he sang Irish songs and the best through backs . But the best was the collaboration of Disney music!!! He has the crowd cheering and singing all night.

Galway

Amazing little city! 60% of the population is below 30 years old so the city is buzzing with excitement. I took a walking tour and saw all the historical sites plus got some great tips on where and what to eat! Lunch was at McDonough’s, which is the best place to get fresh fish and chips! Lots of local musicians singing on the streets and small boutique shops! I wish I got to spend more than one day there, but I’m happy I got to experience it.

Carnival Del Toros and Salamanca Spain!

Carnival Del Toros

My friends and I went to Ciudad Rodrigo for their annual Carnival Del Toros in mid February. Throughout this carnival, their main attraction is the man-made bullfighting arena in the middle of the town’s square. The carnival commences with the traditional running of the bulls. The town’s clock tower signals when the bulls were set free to run through the streets. Throughout this run, people egged on the bulls by running in front of them, or simply stopping right in the bulls tracks. Risky…yes but, this is not like the running of the bulls in Pamplona. Instead they let only a few bulls out and there was plenty of room for the thrill seekers to run away to safety. Only about 5 bulls ran, each of them running through the town into the square and back, accompanied by the fighters who had long sticks that poked them in the right direction. Then later on in the evening, there would be a bull-fight in the arena that lasted all night.

Watching a professional bull flight can be hard to watch to say the least. Many Matadors antagonize the bull until they slay it with a sword.  I was warned that even though I want to get the whole Spanish experience, bullfighting is one I could miss out on. One person compared the legalization of bullfighting to the legalization of guns in the US “it’s the way it’s always been and something many people can’t imagine giving up.” My friends and I did not attend the fight but the party outside the arena lasts all night! I suggest getting there around dinnertime and be prepared to stay until the sun comes up. There is a huge beer tent that only opens after 12 and all kinds of food all night. The only problem is that it is about an hour away from Salamanca (where we stayed.) So we took a bus to the carnival and then a taxi back late at night, the taxi was about 80 euros but we split it 5 ways. We were definitely the only Americans at the carnival, which made it feel like we got an authentic Spanish experience.

Salamanca

Such a nice get away from Madrid! Salamanca was smaller and had a lot more charm with its old cobble stone roads and old cathedrals. The architecture in Salamanca was unbelievable, we walked around entire city in awe. Salamanca had more of a college town vibe, it has a lot of young people most studying abroad there.

Erasmus hostel I recommend staying here, it was walking distance to everything, super clean and had breakfast included.

Some sites include:

Plaza mayor de Salamanca Just like the plaza mayor of Madrid, it is one big square filled with restaurants and shops! We got ice cream and sat in the sun in the plaza.

Casa de las Conchas- This is a shell-covered Palace! We did not go in but it was beautiful from the outside.

The new cathedral of Salamanca – this you literally can’t miss it’s a huge cathedral with bells at every hour and the roman bridge of Salamanca.

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.

#WhyIchoseOswego

 

 

Lake Ontario sunsets will forever be my favorite

Lake Ontario sunsets will forever be my favorite (that’s me on the right with my sorority sister Nathalie on the left!) 

Now that I am a graduating senior with only a few weeks left I want to let you know #WhyIchoseOswego. Coming from a moderately big town to Oswego was a huge change. I remember going to the freshman orientation and telling my parents I can’t go here, this is too far, I don’t know anyone! Those thoughts that were piling up in my head quickly changed after my first week at the land of oz.

Why did I choose Oswego? I wanted a change. I wanted to venture out of my comfort zone, meet new people, but most importantly I wanted to grow as an individual and become a leader. Oswego allowed me to do just that. Between starting my freshman year at the student run TV station (WTOP), to now being the Vice President of the National Panhellenic Conference I really can say I have done it all.

This past semester I have had the amazing opportunity to intern for the Social Media team here at SUNY Oswego. I worked under Professor Tim Nekritz. While the hours for this internship were mostly on my own time; it was all the time. When you are in control of the Social Media (Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, etc.) your work is non stop. You are constantly updating information. With that being said it is our job to make sure to be as up to date with that information on all of our social media handles.

I chose a main focus this semester and that was Greek Life Representation on SUNY Oswego’s campus. My main goal was to promote greek life in a positive way. I was extremely thankful that I had to opportunity to take full control of the “sunyoswego” Instagram page. I did a #lakertakeover. Everyday for a week I had to post information on Instagram that lead to the Spring 2017 Formal Recruitment. When I asked some potential new members of greek life how they found out about this event they said “We saw posts on instagram and followed from there”. The turnout for the event exceeded our expectations. Taking on a Universities social media accounts, or rather any social media account you always have to be very careful what you are posting. You can post one wrong thing and it could have a negative outcome.

Whats next? As the days are dwindling down I am applying for jobs in New York City area. I have been on the job hunt for jobs that have to do with social media, public relations, and a place where I can see myself being genuinely happy. SUNY Oswego has given me so much material for my future, so I feel confident to enter “the real world”.

Thank you to everyone I have crossed paths with here at Oswego. I will never forget these memories and hope to continue making more even outside of Oswego.

 

…and so the adventure begins.

Liquid Sunshine

The end of the semester is near! For us college students, that means hitting the books, gearing up for finals, lots of studying, and eventually getting our stuff together and heading back home. Meanwhile, for the weather, this time of year represents change. Colder temps give way to warm and pleasant weather, daylight length increases, and snow is all but history. (Usually.) It can be torture if you are stuck inside studying on a glorious 70º day…

The last week and a half has presented spring in earnest here in Oswego. It has reached 70º on campus on four different days, with two of those going above 80. Daffodils have bloomed, and shrubbery is just starting to grow leaves. Spring rain showers have been plentiful, as well.

As a matter of fact, the Great Lakes region as a whole has had enough rain this spring to cause Lake Ontario to rise a full 10″ in the past two weeks. It is noticeable from the lakeshore on campus, as some of the areas that were previously above water are now underwater, or are at least vulnerable to being splashed on by waves. Watch where you sit while you watch the sunset!

A side effect has been more dramatic crashing waves at the shoreline. I have been taking photos of these waves around sunset, creating a series of “Liquid Sunshine” shots. Take a look:

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April 8, 2017

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April 8, 2017

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April 16, 2017

All of these pictures were taken behind Waterbury Hall.

The upcoming weather pattern looks cooler this week, yet still spring-like, with high temps largely in the 50s and 60s. Probably a few windy and wavy days, as well. See ya around, Oswegonians!