On studying, slacking and some.

The early bird gets the worm.  I guess there is some truth in that, and in regards to studying, it could not apply more. I’m a senior this year; I’ve seen many students come and go, and with that, the whole spectrum of studying habits: everything from your child-prodigy-never-had-to-study to the perennial slacker and everything in between. I’ve seen teachers pets so eager to jump down their professors throats that they over prepare and become crippled with anxiety  when it comes time to do tests.

My style, however, is more gung-ho. I’m quite an obsessive person, so when I’m in the mood to do some studying, some studying is going to get done. I understand that everyone has their own personal style and preference when it comes to studying, but I cannot stress enough the importance of good planning matched with good execution. More often than not, that is the difference between students who succeed and those who do not.

With that being said, I’m writing this post at 2 in the AM, with a midterm early tomorrow morning and a lab practical the day after.  I guess you could say I’ve been productive, productively slacking that is.

99 Songs to Make Your Homework Awesome


About Me

Hi everyone! As my first post, I thought I would introduce myself and talk about why I chose Utica College and some of my experiences so far:

I have lived in Central New York my whole life, but love to travel all over! My most recent vacation was to California this past spring with my parents and brother. We went to Disneyland, Universal Studios and Hollywood. My favorite part was the “Back Stage Tour” where I saw the sets and props from The Mindy Project, The Voice and Back to the Future. (I am a big TV fan, I watch pretty much anything and everything!)

Since I was in kindergarten I wanted to be a teacher, and even after graduating high school I still believed that. I had only applied to one school, the College of St. Rose in Albany, NY, and the night before my first deposit was due, I completely changed my mind. I decided that St. Rose was not for me…at all, and my mom suggested that I visit Utica College. So it was May, only a few weeks from graduation, and I quickly applied to UC with the help from my school’s guidance counselor. The admissions staff at UC was SO helpful and I was admitted and registered for classes for the coming fall semester.

After sitting in my first education class, I realized that I could not do this for the next four years, let alone my whole life! Through a variety of classes and the help from advisers, I found that I love the field of public relations.

Two years later, I know I made the right decision. UC has given me something that no other college could have; the opportunity to find out what I really wanted to do! I am sure that if I had attended any other school, I would not have had the support from advisers and professors that I did here. I know that i also would not have had such great experiences, and would have never met the life-long friends that I did.


Why Silence Isn’t Golden in the Classroom

Photo from Utica College


Nobody likes being forced to talk. We all despise those dreaded ice breakers and introductions we’re put through on the first day of classes. It’s a complex battle of trying to sit calmly waiting for our turn while also internally stressing over what we’re going to say.

Source: IWasteSoMuchTime.com

But do we honestly expect to sit through an entire class in silence, never having to speak or acknowledge each others’ existence? Before I started at UC in 2011, I had a glamorized idea of what each new class would be like: everyone would be friendly and outgoing, happily introducing themselves and eager to make new friends. Now, that’s not to say there aren’t people like this, but way too many of my classes, especially larger ones, have been filled with silent, stone-faced students.

It’s strange because you’ll then spot some of those same complacent people outside of class acting loud and personable, and you’ll wonder why they shut off when they enter the classroom. I know it’s hard to be the one to raise your hand or to start up a conversation, but somebody’s got to do it. And there’s nothing more awkward than a class-full of people who refuse to speak.

Frankly, it’s uncomfortable for everyone involved. The professor asks a question, and tense silence ensues when no one responds. It’s not even that we don’t know the answer. A lot of the time, it’s a simple question, but we just don’t speak up. Why? Are we all socially awkward?

Probably not. Perhaps we don’t want to be THAT person who answers every question, or most of the time, we’re afraid of sounding foolish. Even the smartest people are susceptible to screwing up an answer to an easy question. But if no one talks at all, not just when it comes to answering questions but participating in discussions as well, then class is 10 times more awkward and a thousand times more boring than it needs to be.

We all just need to loosen up a bit. No one’s going to judge you if you laugh at the professors’ jokes, or at the very least, crack a smile for once (some professors are quite amusing at times). Plus, you’ll make the professor feel better, and the rest of the class might feel at ease about letting their guard down too. Not to mention, professors love students who choose to participate. So why not take an easy opportunity for getting on their good side and maybe boosting your grade?

I don’t know about you, but I won’t tolerate the second half of the semester being so cold (and I don’t mean temperature-wise). I know it’s easy to think everyone’s judging you, but they really couldn’t care less. So raise your hand once in a while, say “hi” to that kid next to you, and crack a smile at your professor’s attempt at hilarity (whether or not they’re successful).



Fun at the Zoo!

Nothing like the zoo to make you feel like a little kid again.
…. I act my shoe size more often than I care to admit.

I was able to visit the Syracuse Zoo on Sunday thanks to Cody, a resident assistant in South Hall for the ULive themed floor. The floor is aimed towards biology/health studies students, and they do all sorts of cool stuff geared towards students in those majors. I was so excited to be a bio major for the day!

I’m a huge animal lover and always find myself mesmerized by the unique animals at the zoo (and trying to kidnap the cute ones), like this little fellow:

Poor thing has a cataract from a car accident, but he’s made almost a full recovery.
We’re also pretty much in love. Send dead mice in lieu of wedding gifts.

Another great part of the zoo is seeing animals in their natural environments. It’s kind of like “The Real World,” but with lemurs and flamingos.

This photo was taken seconds before the the two penguins that are in each other’s faces went at it. I’m actually being completely serious this time.

The penguin on the left lost and was not too pleased.

Poor guy.

And no trip to the zoo is complete without this movie star:
Not a fan of paparazzi.

You better believe I was that person yelling “you guys, I found Nemo!!!” in the middle of the zoo. Even the toddlers were embarrassed for me.

Your turn!
Do you like the zoo? When was the last time you went and what zoo?

Favorite animal?
Owls! Although, the red panda is making a mad dash for my heart.
Do you act your age?
In most situations, I do (I swear). The zoo just warrants some light-hearted fun!



Majors and Minors Fair

Today, we had the annual Majors and Minors Fair in the Strebel Student Center Lounge. Before the event officially began, the lounge was packed with students. It was almost impossible to walk through without bumping into someone. All the departments had their own table with so many cool things to show off.

But the best of them all: the Physics departments table, where we were “shocking” students with our static electricity machine and a bunch of other cool toys. I think the Chem departments table was pretty cool, literally, with their ice cream made with liquid nitrogen. Thanks to everyone who stopped by, and to all my friends and colleagues who were participating in the event.



Hiking with South Hall

Today, I tagged along with some of the RA’s from South Hall on a hiking event they held for their residents. We went up to Old Forge to a trail that went around a lake and passed a small waterfall. Great hike, free lunch and all with the best company! Thanks Sam and Vikki!



Paintball Explosion

So, I walked into the dining commons after spending a few hours in the library working on physics homework, and I bumped into Karita Rawlins, president of the Resident Hall Association. She tells me that a group of students is about to leave campus to go play paintball for a few hours. I had planned to spend the rest of my day in my room responding to emails and catching up on a few assignments, but just the idea of getting off campus for a few hours sounded wonderful.

After a few minutes of Karita convincing me to go, I ran back to my room to change and got on the van to go play paintball. It was awesome! There was a huge group of UC students there, and it was such a rush to be running through the woods dodging paintballs. That rush of adrenaline was just what I needed after a long week of 300 level classes.

A big shout out to Sigma Iota Alpha and the Resident Hall Association for putting on such a successful event! You guys need to do it every semester.