Candace Myers

Candace Myers

Public Relations and Journalism.

The Tangerine|WPNR|PRSSA|ResLife

I am an aspiring broadcast journalist from Harlem, N.Y.

I am involved in several organizations on campus such as the college newspaper, "The Tangerine," The Public Relations Student Society of America, Women In a New Direction (W.I.N.D) and The Black Student Union. Being from the city, the thought of living in a different area and adjusting to the changes were very scary, however, with the help from the faculty members in the PRJ department and campus resources, adjusting was easier than I thought it would be.

Handling Bad News From Home, While at School

Apr 20, 2014 | Author: Candace Myers

 

Picture from Utica.edu

Picture from Utica.edu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I first left for college I never thought about possible emergencies that may happen back at home. This year after being away at college for almost four years, I experienced that feeling twice. During the fall semester I found out my grandmother had passed away and it felt like my world came crashing down on me. My parents tried to wait until I got home to tell me the news and just paid for my ticket, however, my cousin who was unaware of my parents plan, told me.

The second time it happened was just last week April 2. I received a news alert on my phone that there was a shooting at the Fort Hood base in Texas, which is the same base my sister in the Army is stationed at. Once again, it felt like my world came crashing down. I eventually found out my sister was okay and the situation ended soon afterwards but the feeling was indescribable.

After experiencing both situations, I think I can say that I have an idea of how to handle unexpected bad news while away at school. During both of these times, I felt alone, but I was not really alone. My professors and the staff I work with here at school were very comforting. They let me take time for myself when I needed it and they even gave encouraging words. When my grandmother passed away, the Office of Student Development and Counseling reached out to me just to let me know they were there for me, if I needed to talk to them. It made me feel so much better. There was also an explosion in Harlem, N.Y. this semester, and because the school knew there are several students from that area, they sent an email sending their prayers and letting us know the Office of Development was available for anyone who was impacted by the incident.

With all this being said, below are two suggestions on handling bad news back at home, while away at school.

  1. If you are feeling lonely, talk to someone. Talk to a friend or roommate about the situation to let your emotions out. It is always good to have a listening ear or they may even say something very helpful.
  2. Let your professor know. When the situation at my sister’s base happened it was right before my night class. I told my professor and he was very understanding. He allowed me to stay on my phone during class so I could stay in contact with my family and look at the Internet for updates.
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W.I.N.D.’S All Girls Rock award show a success

Apr 1, 2014 | Author: Candace Myers

The members of W.I.N.D asked random girls why they rock.

Utica College’s organization, Women In a New Direction held their first annual “All Girls Rock” award show on Friday March 28, in Strebel Auditorium. They honored several staff members, and students for their accomplishments academically, and their roles on campus. The show was hosted by myself and junior Tatiana Betances, and it to be done for the first time ever, people were really impressed. The executive board members opened up the show the poem “Phenomenal Woman” by Mya Angelou.

The idea to have the award show came from the award show broadcasted yearly on Black Entertainment Television (BET) “BLACK GIRLS ROCK! Inc.” According to their website,  “BLACK GIRLS ROCK! Inc.” is an a non-profit youth empowerment and mentoring organization established to promote the arts for young women of color, as well as to encourage dialogue and analysis of the ways women of color are portrayed in the media. The awards show honors women of color who have helped carry out their mission statement, highlighting the accomplishments of exceptional women of color who have made outstanding contributions in their careers, and who stand as inspirational and positive role models in their communities.

The W.I.N.D. organization decided to take that concept and honor women of all races, and ethnicities during women’s month. The process of planning this event took about four months including time during the winter and spring break. As a member of the organization with a total of  only six girls, it was a tough process. We hit several road blocks such as time conflicts with other organization shows, financial issues, and even trying to satisfy each of the members using everyone’s ideas. However, with the appropriate communication skills and guidance from different staff members on campus, everyone’s ideas came together and things begin to fall in place.

Some of the people who received awards included the staff from the Career Services office. They received the “Forward Thinking” award for their critical thinking skills and the knowledge they provide students who come into their office with. Dean of Students Alane Varga received the “The Door Is Always Open” award for her availability and willingness to help students at any time. The two biggest awards of the night, the “Women In a New Direction Award” and the “Women of the Year Award” were given to senior, Anisah Richardson, and Residence Life secretary, Monica Hodkinson. Other categories included “Not All Beauty and No Brains” “Most Gifted,” and “Tough Love.”

Members of UC organizations Africa In Motion, (A.I.M.) V-DAY, and Open Moments, performed pieces during different segments of the show to entertain the crowd. A reception followed the event where the winners and people who attended the show ate food and socialized after. It was such a relief for myself and the other WIND members for the event to be over. The pressure of planning big events on campus for students is almost unbearable. The questions, “Will it be successful?” “Will people be happy?” constantly replay in your mind. The answers to those questions relieved all of the tension we felt as we were able to answer each of those questions with a simple, yes.

Adapting to change

Mar 28, 2014 | Author: Candace Myers
Photo from Utica.edu

Photo from Utica.edu

 

Phot from Nyhabitat.com

Photo from Nyhabitat.com

For some, the thought of leaving home and going to a place that one may not be familiar with can sound pretty intimidating. At least it did to me when I prepared to leave for college. Being from New York City, I am use to the fast paced lifestyle New Yorkers live everyday. I took public transportation to travel to school everyday with working people, people entertaining subway riders for donations, and other students. That all changed when I graduated high school and came to Utica College. My first time on the campus was during new student orientation and all I could think was, “how will I get use to this?” I did not have the answers then, however, I figured it out as time went by.

I didn’t look at the change as it being inconvenient. I instead looked at it as starting a new chapter in my life. I was living in a place that I never thought I would see myself in, and there were so many great people around I was anxious to mix and mingle with. Within weeks I had become familiar with the campus and its surroundings, and I then began to accept it. When I went home for long breaks like Christmas break or summer vacation, I would anticipate coming back to school after a while. I noticed I begin to enjoy the slower pace of Utica that I did not know anything about before. I begin to appreciate the large open space, the plants, the clouds that look like they are within arms reach, the trees, the silence at night, etc. I realized later being on campus felt like a vacation away from the city.

Now as a senior, I’ve become accustomed with the lifestyle here in Utica and I learned to appreciate it. On top of that, there are several people on campus who are from the city who struggle with the same issues. The answer to getting over the change is talking to different people and making many connections as possible. This way students can attend events together, join organizations, and give each other advice about adapting to the change and how to feel, “at home.” Team work makes the dream work!

5 Tips to adapt to change away from home:

1. Don’t look at it as an inconvience. Look at it as a learning experience.

2. Connect with several people. The more the better. If you meet someone who lives close by or in the upstate area, it’s possible they can introduce you to new activities or even show you the fun things available to do.

3. Stop for a moment and take in the beauty of the campus. It will make you appreciate the pace of things and nature around us.

4. Have an open mind. If you’re open about meeting people, attending events, and trying new things you won’t get bored and become homesick, eventually missing the things you were use to back at home.

5. Don’t be afraid to come out of your comfort zone. You may try something you never tried before and end up really enjoying it, or graduate college with a diverse group of friends.