Category Archives: Student Life

Put a Twist on Sodexo: How to Make Your Own Meal Out of Bits and Pieces of Theirs

Dec 1, 2015 | Author: Angela Malaspina

Have you ever gone to eat at the dining commons on campus and felt like there was nothing “good” to eat? I mean, we’ve all been there; crunching down on some Cinnamon Toast Crunch during the 5:00 dinner rush.

I’m here to tell you there is so much more you can do within the restrictions of the made-to-order deli station, grill, the two hot food stations, and the good ‘ol salad bar. Combine, take out, add, “beef up,” mix it, and my favorite: make it into a sandwich.

The other day at dinner I found myself indifferent to what was being served. The nacho bar is always a crowd favorite and definitely one of my go-to’s, but I wanted something more. I got the chips from the nacho bar and all of the toppings I wanted; olives, salsa, jalapeños, beans, sour cream … more sour cream. And then I went to the salad bar and filled the bottom of a plate with lettuce, cheese, and some grape tomatoes. When I got back to my table I grabbed my fork and took some deep-seated childhood anger out on the plate of nachos.

Once the chips, olives, salsa, jalapeños, beans, and lavish amount of sour cream was all crushed and mixed together, I added it to the other plate of ordinary salad. POOF! A delicious taco salad was in front of me!taco2

It doesn’t stop at the nachos. Veggie and turkey burgers are always an option at the grill – just ask! Once they’ve cooked either of the two “secret burgers,” put it between two buns or skip the bread, layer some crispy cucumbers, and drizzle with some light ranch dressing and balsamic glaze! Since you’ve been so creative I’d say you deserve to put a scoop of your favorite ice cream in between two of Sodexo’s dangerously good chocolate chip cookies! Enjoy the dining commons your way!

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EFT- Electric Fuerza Talent Show

Nov 23, 2015 | Author: MaryEllen Fitzgerald-Bord

Fuerza Latina, a student organization on the Utica College campus, “fulfills a common need to share rich Latino/a heritage and unites all Latino brothers and sisters in a mutual bond.” (According to their pioneer place.)


Every year the organization holds a talent show that they encourage all members of the UC community to participate in. They held open auditions this year during the month of October and advertised throughout the campus so that everyone would know about the opportunity to showcase their skills. Any talent is encouraged and welcome! (Dancing, singing, spoken word, comedy, etc.)


The cumulation of all of those auditions and rehearsal times for the selected performers was this past Saturday. Doors opened for the talent show at 5 with festivities being kicked off right away by DJ Rey Stacks, a student from UC, playing music and pumping up the crowd. The theme of the talent show was Electric Fuerza Talent show, so Strebel Auditorium, where the event took place, was decked out with glow sticks and balloons. Fuerza Latina even handed out glow sticks to audience members and it was a fun and poppin’ environment to wait for the show to start in.


I actually decided to audition this year, being that it’s my senior year and all, it was my last chance! I made it into the show and actually performed an acoustic cover of Adele’s “Hello” with my resident, Fredo, playing guitar. It actually was one of my favorite performances to date. There’s just something about being able to do what you love in front of people that really want to see you do well. The audience would clap and cheer for every single performer, and the environment was so encouraging. People would shout out for performers and were waving their glow sticks during slower performances, it was like a concert at certain points!


The winner(s) of the show this year was AIM, or Africa in Motion, a dance crew from Utica College. They performed a moving piece about the Black Lives Matter movement, and it was incredible to see them portray such strong emotions and concern for social activism through their dance skills. They really deserved to win. In fact, every performer really put an incredible amount of effort into their performances and it showed. Even performers from other schools were invited to showcase their talents, and they all were amazing.


Fuerza Latina hosts the talent show every year and it is always a widely attended event. So, next year be on the lookout for their annual show and head to it! It’s a guaranteed good time. Maybe even work up the courage to audition? I mean, it only took me 4 years? So what have you got to lose?


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(The winners from this year’s show!)

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(A snapchat of me singing snapped by my friend!)


Life as a Business Major

Nov 20, 2015 | Author: Jonathan Fiore

So what’s it like to be a business major at Utica College? Well, for anyone who’s wondering, I’ll be happy to tell you: It’s great. To be entirely honest, I would say it was one of the best decisions that I have ever made. I am half way through my junior year here at UC, and I can honestly say that I have no regrets.

I grew up in New York Mills, a village right next to Utica, and my high school was a ten minute walk from Utica College. At first I chose UC for the convenience factor, but I soon realized how much I underestimated the potential of the school. After about a week and a half of classes, I quickly developed strong working relationships with all of the professors that I had.

In fact, I was lucky enough to have James Norrie, Dean of the Business School, as a Teacher’s Assistant in my Business Management 101 class; this turned out to be one of the best strokes of luck I had ever had. We got to know each other quite well in a short amount of time, and he has become a bit of a mentor to me. I can’t imagine that there are many other colleges in the country or even the world where the dean of your school is able to be a TA in one of your classes.


With my classes going well, I chose to join one of the many different club and organizations on campus: the Utica College Investment Club. I was interested to learn more about finance and stock trading so I simply showed up to a meeting. Within weeks, I learned more about trading stocks than I could have ever imagined. What was truly fascinating about the club was that it was ran by students and they manage a $100,000+ portfolio of real money.

After my first semester, I began to take a far more active role in the club. At the end of the year, I was elected to vice president of the Investment Club; next semester, I’ll be taking over as president. We meet every Wednesday at 4:00 in the trading room (shown above). Meetings always begin with some type of food, as the club has decided that business should always be mixed with pleasure.

Thanks to the Investment Club, I was even able to secure my first financial internship after my freshman year. I learned so much over that summer that I came back to UC feeling ready to tackle anything my professors could throw at me.

The Investment Club aside, the faculty here at UC are just as great. Because of the small class sizes, you get to know them quickly and often have many of the same professors multiple times, which is actually quite nice because you know what to expect each year.

Just recently, we had a speaker come to the campus to talk about his career in management and how he started his own business. I was lucky enough to be invited to the cocktail hour and dinner held beforehand.

During that time, nearly the entire faculty of the business school was gathered together and having great discussions about the happenings on campus as well as the economic events transpiring around the world. To be able to be a part of these events on campus is amazing. UC has so much more to offer than meets the eye.

Personally, I’m extremely excited for all of the business and finance classes to be moved to downtown Utica in the fall. The new classrooms look sleek and modern and the new trading room will certainly make the Investment Club even better. It’s really an exciting time to be here at UC.

What is Residence Life?

Nov 19, 2015 | Author: Tyler St. Louis

Residence Life at Utica College means much more than just four walls, two beds, and a roommate. Seven buildings, one residential quad, nearly 1000 residential students, and one unforgettable experience.Blog Post 1 - What Is Residence Life?

As I am finishing up my fifth semester here at Utica College, I have come to establish a new love for the Residence Life program. As a second year Resident Assistant in the First-Year Village, I have come to realize all that this college has to offer, not only its residential students, but also the entire student body.

My name is Tyler St.Louis and I am a second-year Resident Assistant in North Hall. I am a junior majoring in the Health Studies Physical Therapy program and minoring in Aging Studies. Residence Life at UC has become something that I’ve grown to understand and appreciate through my own experiences. It’s quite impossible to be bored here at UC with the opportunities available to everyone!

So what’s it like to live within a UC Residence Hall?
Living on campus has been one of the best opportunities I have had as a college student. I have had the opportunity to experience first-year move-in, numerous homecoming weekends, a plethora of RA events, and becoming a Resident Assistant. Every event I have been to has been a memorable one that has helped me take my college experience to the next level.

Living in a Residence Hall at UC has helped mold me into being a well-rounded college student. I have spent hours greeting people, making new friends, bonding over pizza, and hosting numerous activity-based floor events to withhold an outstanding Residence Life community.

Don’t let me fool you, there are definitely struggles. It’s difficult to adapt to living with a roommate when you’re used to having your own room at your house. Before coming to UC, I pictured the typical “terrible roommate” scenario where all we would do is fight and our room would be a disaster only to be proved wrong on move-in day in 2013. The Office of Residence Life establishes a set of guidelines that must be followed by all residents or else they can face consequences. Therefore, though those issues certainly exist, the Office of Residence Life tries to abolish them rather quickly through things such as roommate agreements and policy improvements. It’s perfectly normal to be nervous because it is a large change in the life of any college ready student, but UC makes it completely possible to adapt rather quickly!

Blog Post 1 - What Is Residence Life?How do you keep yourself from being bored here?
I have found that I have been asked this question a lot! And quite frankly, I have found that it’s an easy answer: GET INVOLVED!

The easiest way I have found to keep myself from being “bored” is to stay involved. Joining clubs, participating in activities, creating new clubs, and relaxing with people who have common interests have allowed me to stay involved on this campus. I am involved in plenty of clubs and organizations that keep me busy to the point that I do not have the time to be bored. UC has 14 categories that are a home to nearly 100 clubs and organizations currently on campus.

Some organizations and clubs that exist are Residence Hall Association and National Society of Leadership and Success. Residence Life makes it extremely easy to locate these clubs and stay up-to-date on the events that are being hosted. I am personally involved in both of these organizations, and that was made possible through my RAs posting fliers and hosting events that are educational and community-based. Both of these clubs have allowed me opportunities to grow and expand my social life here at UC. Residence Hall Association (RHA) hosts large-scale events that are held in or around the residence halls that cater to all of our residential students. The National Society of Leadership and Success is an academic honor society that I was nominated to enter. I went through quite a few meetings and requirements and am currently waiting to be inducted in December. Both of these clubs are organizations in which I have been able to meet many new people and grow as a student here at UC.

If you have a few extra minutes in the near future, check out my next blog, “Go Best friend That’s my Best Friend,” discussing life as an RA.

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Fuerza Latina Has a Successful Night!

Nov 19, 2015 | Author: Jayson Bretton
Fuerza Latina had an amazing talent show this past Saturday in Strebel Auditorium. Their annual talent show , hosted by Gregory Spears and Jabarie Broomes, consisted of dancing, stepping and singing from people on the Utica College campus and off campus as well. There was about 14 different acts that went up to perform but it all came down to the top three. Third place went to Prestige Step Team, Second place went to Impacto Sensual and First place went to Africa In Motion. I had interviewed the Secretary of Fuerza, Karina Cabrera (Senior) about her Organization and this is what she had to say.
“Fuerza Latina to me is an organization where we embrace and acknowledge the empowerment of the Hispanic/Latino community, not only in Utica College but in the world. In the organization, we welcome everyone no matter their ethnic background. We stress how important it is to be diverse and that just because we are “Fuerza Latina” does not mean that we are strictly an organization for just Latinos/Hispanics, because that is not the case. We want to educate everyone on what it means to be Hispanic/Latino and our role in this country and world.”
Karina says that it is never to late to join Fuerza Latina, they have weekly meetings on Wednesday’s at 5pm in Boehlert Conference Room. She also felt that the talent show was a huge success overall. “This year’s talent show was better than last year’s in that it was shorter and we had a successful after party planned.” But last year’s talent show is a talent show to remember because our decorations were AMAZING and the fact that we did it ourselves made them even more special.” We have a lot of talented people on our campus, and you would never know unless an event like this is happening.
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Congratulations to Fuerza Latina on a successful night! For more information on events on campus, check my twitter @Jayson_UC

A Commuter’s Life: Leadership Weekend

Nov 18, 2015 | Author: Jonathan Fitzgerald-Bord

Welcome! I appreciate you taking the time to read this. I’m Jonathan, a Utica native who has lived here his entire life. My major is biology, and I am in my second year of collegiate study. This semester, however, is my first semester at Utica College because I spent my first year of school at our local community college, MVCC. I commuted there, and I commute to UC, which can bring about all sorts of stresses and worries. I want to be here to show you with my experience how misinformed we all are about the commuter experience.

For starters, my biggest worry about commuting to school was not being able to be involved on campus enough. Everyone wants to get that college experience that they will carry with them for the rest of their life; a presence on campus is important to build positive experiences. “But, I thought that all commuters did was go to class and go home?” Don’t fall victim to this mentality! Commuters can be equally involved on campus, and are sometimes an even more important asset in regards to how the school can positively affect our community. Take it from me, I partake choir and orchestra, am the vice president of the Gay Straight Alliance, am involved in the biological society, and do two separate research projects within the biology department. Commuters can be just as involved, if not more, than the average campus student.

 A Commuter’s Life: Leadership Weekend

The third weekend of October, I had the fortunate opportunity to be involved in an event sponsored by our student senate. “Leadership Weekend,” a time when students who may have never seen one another on campus before come together for fun, to share ideas, and even overcome fears. From day one of awkward introductions, to day three of warm goodbyes, the weekend was an incredible experience from start to finish.

Everything always sounds good on paper, or I guess on computer screens. I filled out the application and got an email back saying I was chosen to go on the leadership weekend trip. Great, this is exciting; I’m going to rock this! Then comes my realization as I stepped on the bus that, other than my sister, I knew no one. Most of the people there I hadn’t even seen on campus before; I guess, of course, this is one of the cons of being a commuter in their first semester at UC. How was this going to work? I’m not the best at meeting new people, and I didn’t make the connection until just then that I was about to spend the weekend with complete strangers, far from home/campus, without cell phone service (I will say in retrospect that the lack of a phone actually felt very liberating and free).

Summing up the first day of the trip in one word, I would simply have to say, “surprising.” I was surprised to become so comfortable with new people so quickly, I was surprised all of the ice breaker activities were working, and I was surprised these strangers all seemed to become friends. We did activity after activity to build bonds, and share ideas, and slowly we became pretty close. For the first time since I transferred to UC, I started to feel like I had a place on campus. Being a commuter, I always go home at the end of the day, while many of my friends go back to their respective residence halls. Even if I went back to their rooms with them and hung out for a while, there would still be the moment when I had to go home, and I was the different one. This isn’t to say that I am the only commuter, because I, of course, am not. However, I did feel singled out and a bit detached from campus. After the first day of leadership weekend, I was able to feel this weight lifting off my shoulders.

The second and third day were a blur, but involved crazy ropes courses, creative trust and leadership building activities, the sharing of many ideas of what makes UC great, and how we can continue to strive for even better, and finally, a presentation to those from the college who are able to put our ideas into motion and start the ball rolling.

I guess what I’m trying to get at is, just get yourself out there. If you’re anything like me, don’t let the commuter life get you down. I always had wanted to go away to school, but things didn’t turn out as planned; I actually think things turned out much better. I know that most people say this, and it may be cliché, but still Utica College has become a home away from home for me, even if my home is only a ten minute drive away.

The leadership weekend guide boasted that this was the best spot in the Adirondacks to see the sunrise, and I could not take the chance of him being correct and me missing it.

If Your Life Was an Episode of ‘Friends’: Utica College Edition

Nov 18, 2015 | Author: Angela Malaspina

Hey! I’m Angela from Westchester, New York. I am a senior here at Utica College studying business management. I also concentrate in human resource management and minor in psychology. As far as my involvement on campus, I love to get my hands in a bunch if different projects. I am the President of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and I am a resident assistant in the First Year Village. Along with being a student blogger, I also work in the Utica College mailroom.

My two favorite things are pop-culture and good eats. I am excited to relate pop-culture and Buzzfeed inspired posts to everyday life here on the Utica College campus. What’s better than trending topics and great food? I hope my readers will enjoy reading about awesome eats in the surrounding Utica area and campus food. So if you’re interested in finding the best grub in Utica and reading up on some of the latest campus hacks, I’m your girl!

If Your Life Was an Episode of ‘Friends’: Utica College Edition


The gang enjoying a beautiful fall day on campus

Everyone knows Friends’ famous six-character dynamic of chaos and great laughs set in New York City. But what if they were to hang out on our campus for a day? Central Perk? How about freshly served Starbucks at Le Bistro in Gordon Science Center. In between classes you would probably find the gang hanging out in one of the many lounges on campus.


Rachel working at Le Bistro in Gordon Science Center

Rachel working at Le Bistro in Gordon Science Center

Speaking of Le Bistro, Rachel channels her inner barista skills as she has taken up a work study job making lattes. In her free time, Rachel recently got four other friends together and created her own club on campus called “Green’s Garbs Fashion Club.” Her club designs Utica College apparel and has held workshops on what not to wear.



Phoebe jamming out at Open Mic Night

Phoebe’s debut of her hit single “Smelly Cat” at Open Mic Night in the Pioneer Pub has become a fan favorite. She struck stardom after becoming a YouTube sensation and is often featured on UC’s webpage. After a day’s work filled with studying, Phoebe could be found tabling outside of the dining commons selling her home made sock bunnies to raise money for stray cats and other charitable organizations.



Ross taking a break outside WPNR

Ross has his own talk show segment on the school’s radio station, WPNR. His show features his weekly “Ross’ Rants” on evolution and the latest discoveries in dinosaur bones. You may often find Ross visiting Alex in the counseling and wellness center every Wednesday at 1:00 to talk about his inner conflicts and why he can’t keep a serious relationship. There Ross also seeks clarification of what a “break” actually is. After earning an A in Anthropology, Ross became a Teacher’s Assistant and realized his life calling of being a professor. Of course, as they did in the show, Ross and Chandler are college roommates. Ross’ side of the room looks as if the Museum of Natural History was having a “store closing sale”. On Chandler’s half of the room, there is a “joke of the day” calendar on his desk and of course, a Baywatch poster hanging on the wall.



Monica stressing out in the UC library

Involved in five clubs and organizations on campus, Monica still finds time to kick back with the rest of the group. Often times you will find Monica buried in the library because she will not accept anything less than an A in all of her classes. Although she is busy, Monica’s competitive instincts can not be put to rest. She is the ranking champion and president of the table tennis club here on campus.



Chandler enjoying a copy of The Tangerine

Chandler follows Phoebe’s act on Open Mic Night were he showcases his talents in stand up comedy. After hearing some laughter in the crowd, he has signed up to have his own column in the school’s newspaper, The Tangerine. Every week the gang sips their coffee as they read “Chandler’s Chuckles”. While he prides himself on being witty, Chandler puts his game face on when he meets with the Investment Club – could investing BE anymore exciting!?



Joey grabbing something to eat at the Pioneer Café

Last but not least, Joey. Spending most of his time catching all the sporting events on campus, Joey sure does work up an appetite. It is not a rare occasion that Joey is the last one there when they close down Pioneer Café every night around midnight. Joey’s passion for acting is not lost at Utica College. He is often the lead in each play the Theater department puts on.


Joey and Chandler playing some foosball in the South Hall Lounge

Where do you find yourself most on campus? Maybe you live in the library like Monica or have a reserved seat in the stadium like Joey. Either way, there’s plenty of ways to find out at UC.

Tried By Twelve or Carried By Six

Nov 12, 2015 | Author: MaryEllen Fitzgerald-Bord

This past weekend I attended the Utica College production of, Tried by Twelve or Carried By Six. The play was actually written and directed by Shannon Enders, a professor of Theater right here at Utica College! The production detailed the lives and stories of police officers, firemen, and citizens pertaining to the issue of human rights, specifically focusing on the #blacklivesmatter movement.

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(The program for the production.)

The production boasted a cast full of talented student actors that were brave enough to tackle some heavy storylines pertaining to race issues. The play detailed riots, gun violence, racism, and the actions taken by police officers while in the field. While the issues were heavy, the play never felt too somber; there were a few “well-timed” funny moments which helped to carry the play. While the play did focus on the severity of scenes depicted, it did not completely stray from humoring the audience.

My favorite storyline focused on a young black woman who was cleaning up after a riot. She was upset and exclaiming how the people who were sabotaging the firemen and police were actually sabotaging their community’s own safety. She was upset and was ranting about how individuals that were choosing to riot were actually harming their own neighbors. Yet, the delivery of the lines was comical at times. There were moments when she would aggressively start sweeping in time with her angry musings, and she would complain about how stupid the individuals were. It felt very real. The actress portraying the individual was only a freshman! Her acting abilities were quite impressive.

Actually, the entire cast was very impressive. Each student had all of their lines memorized, and were able to realistically portray intense situations and characters, which is no easy task.

After the production, audience members were invited to discuss the scenes that they had seen throughout the show. It was actually revealed during this discussion that several audience members were actually the policemen or firemen that had their stories portrayed in the play. Shannon Enders, the author, had interviewed people from the surrounding areas to get their take on issues and to hear their stories. During the discussion, an older gentleman actually raised his hand and discussed his storyline that was portrayed in the play.

Being able to actually hear from the people that the production was based on was an amazing experience. Hearing first hand about such poignant issues such as race and racism from people that actually experienced it was memorable and my favorite thing about the production.

While the run of the play might be over, the theater department puts on a production every semester! So, I strongly encourage everyone to attend the play for the next semester! (Or audition!) If the next play is anything like this past one, it is sure to be a hit!

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(I had to snap a final pic of the cast!)


Nov 5, 2015 | Author: MaryEllen Fitzgerald-Bord

This past weekend I had the opportunity to attend the NEACURH conference held at SUNY Geneseo. NEACURH is the North Eastern affiliate of NACURH which stands for the National Association of College and University Residence Halls. It’s basically an organization that is who our own RHA, or residence hall association, reports to.

I was invited to go to the conference because I am a member of Utica College’s RHA. The president, my friend George, and another member, Sara, went as well. Our advisor, Marissa Finch, also accompanied us. (She actually drove…so I guess we accompanied her…)

The conference was themed “Marty and the Chocolate Factory.” (Marty is the name of the NEACURH mascot, which is a moose.) So everywhere you turned there was a candy themed this and that.

I really enjoyed the conference because it was a great opportunity for our RHA to network with other colleges and their own organizations. I actually have so many ideas for potential events and different ways to ensure that a large number of individuals get involved. It was so cool being able to talk to other individuals that have the same goals and the same mindset as myself and my friends!

If you’re interested in a fun time, join RHA! They tons of events planned for the rest of the semester and the upcoming one as well! Meetings are Wednesdays at 2:00pm in Bell Conference Room. Plus, if you join UC’s RHA you’ll have the opportunity to attend a NEACURH event in the future!


(George, Sara, and I getting into the NEACURH spirit!)

Stressed Out? Take a Hike.

Sep 29, 2015 | Author: MaryEllen Fitzgerald-Bord

We’re so fortunate at Utica College to be not-too far from one of the most beautiful national forest reserves in the entirety of the United States. Literally, head up north for just an hour and you’ll be submersed in mountains and trees and glorious fresh air; it’s something every UC student should experience at least once.

This Sunday one of the RA’s in the First Year Village was holding a floor event where people could sign up to go for a hike. I signed up once I knew there were enough spots left, and convinced a friend to tag along. It was a beautiful day and we were lucky it wasn’t too hot in the sun-it was literally “just right.”

The hike was up Bald Mountain which is just outside of the Old Forge area. It’s a relatively easy hike and barely takes a half hour to submit the top. There isn’t too much fancy-footwork required, but there are a view rock faces you have to scale. My philosophy is, “if that dog can do it, so can I.” The views at the top, however, are beautiful and well worth the climb.

So, if you find yourself stressed and in need of some nature-time: head up to the mountains, gain some perspective, and enjoy the view.

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(The view from the top of Bald Mountain.)

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(Courtney and Gator attempting some relaxing yoga at the summit.)

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(George and I scoping out the view.)