Looking Forward

As the summer is very rapidly dying off (there is only a little more than a month until we return), I am beginning to seriously think about this coming year and what I am going to try to do in order to make it better than my freshman year. I didn’t really have the best year last year, and I know that that really is more or less the case for most if not all freshmen (since they’re in a new environment and are just beginning to learn the ropes), but for me, it was more of a personal thing. I made a really stupid decision, and it seemed like I was becoming something I didn’t want to become, and I blamed it on so many things, including myself. The point is, however, that I am actually looking forward to my sophomore year, because it seems as if so much is going to be different.

Yes, there are some of the usual things that bothered me during my freshman year, one of which was my roommate and I coming from very different environments and attempting to tolerate each others’ very different personalities and lifestyles, which, I admit, was not very easy for me to do, even as accepting of a person as I am, and this year, that’s going to be different. I am rooming with my friend Allain, and he’s a really cool kid, so I’m looking forward to that. I also know of a lot of friends who will be living in the same residence hall as me (Waterbury), on the same floor even, so that will be great as well!

There are some people who don’t think so because they see a totally different side of me, but I am a very social person. I don’t like being alone (I vehemently loathe it, in fact), and I don’t like feeling isolated, which I did almost all of the time during my freshman year, and that became a very serious problem for me. I like being with people, even if it’s just to watch a movie or even just to do homework together. Like I said, though, I will be with a lot of friends this year, so I think that things will be a bit different.

I definitely need to try to improve my sleeping pattern; that’s for sure! That’s because, for the most part, during my freshman year, I didn’t have a sleeping pattern! There were times that I would walk to class in the morning like a zombie, because I didn’t make it to bed until 4 or 5 in the morning, and obviously, that’s just not acceptable. I can’t and won’t do that this year! I am making it a mission to be in bed every night by 1 a.m. at the latest. The biggest issue last year was the unbelievable amount of homework I had (which will most likely, God forbid, only be worse this year), which I stayed up very late doing, but my hopes are to try to manage my time better, which, I know, is easier said than done, because as a college student, you kind of just want to have fun and be free of authority and responsibility, but my education is very important to me, and I don’t want to screw it up. I want to be responsible, and I want to do the very best that I can do, which I don’t feel as if I did my freshman year.

As far as my summer is concerned, it has been relatively uneventful so far. I have spent a lot of time with friends, sure, but it’s not like I’ve taken any vacations or anything like that. I have had a massive amount of dentist appointments (bleh) thanks to my inexplicably massive amount of cavities (I rarely ever drink soda, and I brush all the time), so that hasn’t been much fun, but taking it easy is nice; that’s for sure. It’s certainly a very different lifestyle than what it was like in college. I very much enjoy not reading ninety pages out of my Astronomy book or writing three papers all due in a week’s time. I have been tutoring a kid who is in transit between sixth and seventh grade, and of all things to be teaching, yes, I am teaching math! Let’s just say that it has been rather interesting. Well, I’m going to run for now, but I hope to write again soon!

Human Communication. What has it turned into?

As you may or may not know, I am an orientation leader. We do a skit called Life on Campus that describes issues that happen on college campuses, some scenes are specific to Oswego State.
It hit me the other day that at least four of the scenes deal with technology; specifically cell phones, how rude people are becoming because of it and the distractions it causes in everyday life. I guess I knew it subconsciously but never really thought about it, if you will.
I actually sat down at the mall last night, I was by myself, for about three hours just observing the people. There was not one person who did not have a cell phone on them. The sad part is, every single person I saw was with someone else while they were on their own phone. Is it so hard to communicate with the people we are with? Face to face communication? Is the company of the people are with not good enough that we have to resort to texting and calling other people? If this is the case, why doesn’t everyone just sit at home on their cell phone or instant messenger and have multiple conversations at once and not have to worry about being rude, if they even think about that. I just can’t believe how much this really happens.
I remember back in the day, in elementary and middle school where I would pass notes or talk in class and get in trouble for verbally speaking. Today, children starting as young as age 5 have cell phones and are texting their friends in class. It is absolutely ridiculous that we are so reliant on technology to speak to one another. What would happen to the world if the cell phone towers suddenly had a disconnection and cellphones stopped working? It would be a mad rush and people would probably start hyperventilating because they don’t have their phone and might miss an important text or a phone call. I may be a little biased on saying all this all. But I challenge you, for one day. Don’t use your cell phone. Don’t take it to work, don’t take it to class and see how you feel at the end of the day. I mean seriously, what did we all do before we had cell phones? We survived. We actually had to speak to people face to face and we got to see reactions on faces rather than a smiley face on a screen. So I challenge you all, feel free to let me know what you think or how it worked out for you if you’re brave enough to not use a cell phone for a day.

Greening the globe: market or movement?

Since the argument for and against climate change has gained more speed in the past couple years, people are becoming more aware of what’s happening on the earth around us. These global changes, however, have been happening for hundreds of thousands of years as part of a cycle. In more recent times, global warming (happening through the hole in the ozone, polar ice caps melting, rising sea levels, and increasing temperatures) has become a common phenomena with many people saying “Oh, the result must be global warming,” or “It’s hot because of global warming.” The words “global warming” are widely used, but how much of the actual problem is being recognized?

I went to the mall the other day to get some scrubs for work, and while I was there I noticed how green everything was. Green for green, if you will. Handbags, countless t-shirts, wristbands, necklaces, socks, posters, bracelets, flip flops, and tons of more merchandise shared the same words “Go Green,” “Respect Your Mother,” “Save the Planet,” etc. Being “green” and environmentally friendly isn’t in the interest of the environment; it’s in the interest of manipulating a global awareness trend into a marketable venue.

This wouldn’t be too much of a bad thing if this awareness was actually getting somewhere. Most of the t-shirts and handbags made in the name of “eco-friendly” ideas were made in very unfriendly, polluting ways. Just by looking at the tags of the products alone, you see “made in ______.” Insert China, India, Brazil, Indonesia at your convenience. Items traveling from China go over 9,000 or more miles to get to my mall in Elmira, NY. More than ten tons of CO2 is dumped into the atmosphere for each load of clothing or tote bags. Not to mention the materials of which the clothing and totes are made. How does this make it more environmentally-friendly?

I fully support spreading awareness, but how effective is this awareness? By wearing a t-shirt that says “I recycle” makes the statement that obviously you recycle. But, then you go home with your smoothie from the mall and throw out your plastic smoothie container when you’re finished. It’s recyclable; you can surmise this from the recycling sign and a number on the bottom. If it’s recyclable, why aren’t you recycling it? It’s one thing to claim to the general public that you’re eco-friendly, and it’s another thing to actually be eco-friendly. If you’re going to represent the trend, represent it! Offset the carbon footprint from buying that t-shirt through www.carbonfund.org. Buy from local vendors. Research where the items you buy come from and where you can find some of the same products closer. Do something in the movement!

A movement starts with awareness, but it needs action to actually move.

Do the research and help move society into an actual “eco-friendly” atmosphere.

Other sites:

http://ecoproducts.com/cms/index.php

http://www.ecozenboutique.com/catalog.php?category=43

http://www.ecomall.com/biz/clothing.htm

Journey to Kiwi Land

I have been on a plane for almost 2 days now. Overall the trip has been successful. We will be touching down in about an hour. I did find a place to live, it panned out last week but was a little bit close for my own nerves. I will be living in a place called College Hall. Creative right? I am very excited though I get to be transported by some international shuttle, it sure sounded cool in the brochure. I have to say though that the staff at the University of Waikato are great so far, they arranged practically everything for transport.

I still don’t have classes to attend though. Everything is topsy turvy because there was a mix up in my return dates. I will have to take finals in the states or make special arrangements to take them early in NZ. It’s a good thing that their international center has free international calls because BASAC and Career Services are going to have become even tighter to try and figure this out.

(BASAC = Business Advisement Center. Career Services = Part of the Compass in the bottom of the Campus Center with career advice, graduate school searches, internships, volunteer stuff and everything that you could think of that you could need. The staff at both places is so great. However if you are a business student, go to Lisa at BASAC; she is my personal favorite, she always figures it out. I will be calling her as soon as it is a normal hour for Oswego again. I wrote this at 5am July 2 in NZ and 1pm July 1 back in Oz.)

Cruising through the skies, thinking of everything to put it bluntly, crazy days ahead but it is going to be one of my best adventures yet.

Be Ozzy.

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Finding Contentment in Being Less Than What I Want and Being More of What I Need.

Yes, can you believe it? I sure can’t. It’s already been a month after I graduated. I remembered walking through the hall ways not as a college freshman but just as a high school student. I remembered the days of passionately hoping and praying for better ones. I wanted a change in my environment. I yearned for new opportunities to grow and challenge myself in ways that would impact my life. My journey to and through Oswego brought all of those experiences to me. Now that, that chapter is over you ask me what comes next huh?

I have worked as hard as possible and exceeded my goals to this point. I as do thousands of recent college graduates are faced with today’s tough economy where hundreds of thousands of already full-time and part-time workers have been laid off jobs, businesses have foreclosed, and even major corporations seek bailouts. Where do we go from here you say?

Despite these harsh realities I find myself being frustrated but not concerned. Frustrated of course because I wish circumstances weren’t this challenging. But, I’m concerned that people won’t utilize a moment like this to work harder and become more than what they had envisioned from the start for their lives. Yes, that is difficult to do. It’s a challenge and you have to be up for it if you expect to move forward.

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Dr. Phil, from the Dr. Phil Show recently published a blog that was dedicated to recent college graduates, “Ten Things I Wish Your Kids Would Hear at Their Graduation.” I couldn’t agree with him more and I think that all of my peers should take the time to read it. What I take from him is to be flexible, loosing a sense of entitlement, and not to be afraid to fail. I am more content now than I have ever been in my life as a result of the job market and the economy. I have learned to be content in being less than what I want and more of what I need. It comes from the expectation of having a degree, wanting the job of my dreams, my own home, and so forth.

It’s so simple and easy to want those things in a condition where the possibilities of having those things in this tough time are highly unlikely. Even if the job market and economy were great I still couldn’t expect that all my wants should be satisfied. It’s just not a reality either way when attempting to get what you want. It takes time, blood, sweat, tears, and dozens of detours on your path to getting where you would like to go. So on that path, on that journey, in your book or however you determine your guide to your ultimate success, you have to be creative and flexible to finding what you need in place of what you want in order to eventually make it to where you would like to be.

Therefore, I chose to focus on what it is that I need. I need balance. I need to work harder. I need to seek opportunities not for money, but for experience and growth mainly. Overall I’m in love with the condition of what is going on around me. It’s shaping me to being a stronger, wiser, and better person. Of all the things I can’t control I shall make it my best and for all the things I can control I shall make them INCREDIBLE! I sincerely encourage that you seek out your passion and go for it. You can make it happen. You can make it WORK! I remember the days of passionately hoping and praying for better days sometime ago to get to this point. The amazing part now is that I will be doing the same thing to get through to this next phase.

It’s it ironic where the time goes…

So, I moved back to Oswego June 14 to begin working on orientation for first-year and transfer students! Things are going GREAT so far! The team is connecting really well and we starting learning LOC, Life On Campus, today and it is going to be amazing. I can’t believe that it’s been 4 days already. I feel like I was just moving all my stuff in to Johnson, where I’ll be living until August 1.
It’s funny how fast time flies when you’re having fun. It’s scary more than anything though. Take college for instance, I remember moving in my first day, August 26, 2007. I remember what I was wearing, the first people I met and meeting my roommate for the first time. Now, I’m going to be a junior! Where has the time gone?! It’s so important to make the most of your college years, in the right way. Make friends, join organizations, get outside of your comfort zone and push yourself to see just how far you can go. You’ll be surprised at what you can accomplish with a little bit of uncertainty and unfamiliarity.
Becoming a college student is invigorating and such an honor. Take it for everything it is and don’t waste the time away. I’ve seen too many people flunk out because of poor decisions and here for all the wrong reasons. Staying on top of your grades doesn’t necessarily mean being in the library every free minute you have or hitting the books, it’s about making smart choices, getting to know professors and where to go for help.
Have fun and enjoy the years, because soon enough you’ll be walking across the stage in cap and gown shaking your head, saying to yourself, where has the time gone?

My First Ghosthunting Experience

Last weekend, I took part in my very first and long-awaited ghosthunting experience. I would really like to focus most of this blog on what it was that I did that weekend, which, as I just said, was investigating the paranormal. I did not uncover as much as I was hoping, but the evening was far from being eventless. I was once again reassured that there are forces out there beyond what we perceive as normal, what many of us even deny. However, the truth is out there.

I have been a believer in the paranormal for years, basically since I was a young child. When I was really young, maybe eight or nine years old, I saw a middle-aged woman standing outside the doorway of my bedroom. Mind you, there were no lights on in the house besides the small lamp that my parents had on their bedroom, so I didn’t get a good look, but from what I could tell, she was wearing a white nightgown, and her hair was tied up behind her head. She turned away after a few seconds and walked down the hallway.

There was also a time when my brother and I woke up in the morning to find scratches on our chests in the exact same place. The scratches were identical, and like I said, they were in exactly the same places on our body. Now, is it plausible that during the night, during a half-awake state, I felt an itch on my chest and therefore scratched it a little too hard? Yes, of course it is, but I don’t believe in coincedences, so let me rephrase the question. Is it plausible that both my brother and I felt an itch during a half-awake state and therefore scratched ourselves a little too hard, leaving identical scratch marks in exactly the same place on our chests? Like I said, I really don’t believe in coincedences. Ray says that scratches usually signify demonic forces, but that is the only time that I can remember something like that happening, so I’m not sure what to think.

The final example I’d like to offer is the time in which my sister-in-law came to my house when none of us were there. We were eating lunch out somewhere, but the garage door had been left open, so she sat and waited for us in the garage. The garage, mind you, is a part of the house. Above the garage is the bathroom and three bedrooms. When we got back, she asked my parents who was home, and when they told her that no one was, she responded by saying that that was odd, because she heard someone walking back and forth upstairs, which would have been approximately if not exactly where I had seen the woman. Of course, this was not a firsthand experience; she experienced it, not me, but what reason would she have for fabricating that?

Well, now that I have given a very condensed explanation of why it is that I’m a believer, now let me explain what exactly it is that happened that night. Well, actually, it might be more appropriate to provide a background on the house that I investigated. Four people previously died in the house, and as far as I know, they were all natural deaths. However, the most recent inhabitant, an eighty-six year old man, was shaving in the bathroom when he fell and hit his head on the wall.

Now, strange things have happened in the house before. For example, with his amazingly awesome digital recorder, Ray (who I investigated with) has retrieved audio coming from the tunnel in the basement, a male voice whispering “Help me.” In addition, his brother sometimes slept there to take care of the elderly man overnight, and he once heard pounding on the walls, pounding that increased in violent intensity. Last night, he called us crazy for not only going in the house but for staying overnight, but I guess I’m just a brave soul.

Anyway, let’s get back to what I was saying. There is a little bit more to some of the strange things that have previously happened in that house, such as Ray hearing the piano in the basement playing by itself, but the first really strange thing that happened to me is that before leaving my house, I grabbed my audio recorder and made sure that it worked, which it did. It played, rewound, fastforwarded and most importantly recorded, but when I went downstairs to the basement, it didn’t work. I therefore put a new battery in it, once again making sure that the recorder worked before going back downstairs, which it once again did, but again, when I went downstairs to the basement, it didn’t work.

I have heard reports of this type of thing happening to other people while they were ghosthunting, that is, electronic equipment such as cameras and recorders suddenly not working when they were working fine before, so it really didn’t surprise me. However, as we began to further explore the creepy basement, we heard knocking and what sounded like light thudding. When we went back down later (we went down a good three or four times thinking that maybe results would vary during different times of the day), I suddenly felt an uncomfortably cold sensation on the back of my neck, almost as if someone had placed an ice cube there. The lights flickered a couple of times, which was really weird, because it wasn’t just one or two lights; it was all of them.

Now, here is where it gets even more strange, where I have evidence to counter you non-believers who will most probably try to argue with me. Ray has a reader. To be honest with you, I forget what it’s called, but it reads energy. There is a meter on it which reads and reports to you how much energy is in the room depending on where you move the detector. The places in the house where it was higest were near the piano (which, again, Ray says he has heard playing on its own), the exact place in the tunnel where Ray has picked up on the voice asking for help, the old man’s bedroom, the exact place in the basement where I felt the chill and the exact place on the bathroom wall where the old man fell and hit his head. I would very much like someone to try to explain that to me.

I am really looking forward to doing this again in the future, maybe not the same house, because I want to branch out my investigations, but I am very interested in this and always have been. I just hope that I will eventually see something. I have heard that that it’s very rare that you actually see something, and on the off-chance that you do, it’s usually on camera, so I don’t know, but who knows? Maybe someday I’ll get lucky, but I would love to get something on camera so I have proof. Of course, I’m sure some would say that I doctored it or whatever, but I really don’t care. It would reassure me that my desire for the truth has paid off.

About Me

I’m a junior Public Relations major with a minor in psychology. I work with the new student orientation programs over the summer and the fall semester as a Laker Leader. I’m a member of the indoor and out door varsity track team. I throw shot put, discus, hammer, weight and javelin.

I’m from a very, very little town called Atlanta, New York. It is about 30 minutes south of SUNY Geneseo.

I really like art and music. I have quite a creative side and I really enjoy new things!

Yay for summer!

Oswego sunset Summer is fabulous. I can’t get enough of it. School’s out, the sun’s out, what more could I ask for? Oh, probably no work. That’s a good one. I’m going to class (getting paid for it) 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday right now, so I actually wish I was back at Oswego where there seemed to be more of a break time, or at least more variety.

At school, with rare, cooperative weather, I could be hanging out at the lake, going for a bike ride, taking a hike around Rice Creek, or hanging out with friends in the residence halls. I could be working through Students for Global Change, hugging people for Hug Day or informing people about the horrible living conditions people are in across the globe or maybe having a political debate with someone who holds totally opposite views of me. Anyway, it’d be better than sitting in a class hearing an 8-hour lecture.

So, I think I’m suffering from that age-old proverb, “The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.” Do you think that’s how it’ll always be in life? Looking forward to something else rather than enjoying what you have right here and now?

I think that applies to college because when you’re in school you keep wondering, “When am I going to graduate?” But, when you do graduate and are out in the real world, you’re like, “why can’t I be back in college?” We underestimate how good we’ve got it until it’s gone, and we’re left with something less ideal.

But hey, a career, money, and property are all good returns, as long as you either learn or start out liking what you do.

So, I’d say, enjoy summer for all it’s worth, but when the fall comes, enjoy school for all it’s worth. There’s no point in being bummed that summer’s over and pining for those days when you could hang out at the lake. You can even do that at Oswego. Bonfires at night during the first month or so of school are nice ways to escape from the seemingly bland routine of school. It’s all about living life today and loving it all the way.

In the meantime, get some sun, party with friends at the lake (in a responsible, age-appropriate, legal way), maybe work a little, and get stoked for each day!

Have a great week!

Make Way… Oswego ALUM on BoArD!

Now that things have calmed down after the climax of my four years at SUNY Oswego with Graduation on May 16th I am officially an Oswego Alum! This by far is one of the best moments of my life. It’s no joke to see how fast my time here has gone and everything is just a memory. Now that I’m transitioning to the next phase along with millions of other recent college grads isn’t the best time to be out and about in the job market.

I’m looking for employment and that is tough. But guess what peeps I am a lot tougher :-). I find the economy to be a motivating factor for me. This forces me to strengthen my tides, connections, resources, and network unlike any other. I am prepared in doing so and I have done so. This gives me more passion and a willingness to explore and seek opportunities because no matter the state or condition of the world, opportunities are always there. I have been a firm believer that if the opportunities you want don’t exist then go and lay new ground by creating them yourself. Not many people share that willingness but I sincerely hope that people dig as deep as they can and go the mile to find what it is that they would like to do after graduation.

My experience so far has been incredibly rewarding since a graduated two weeks ago. Yes, it’s very recent and I am enjoying myself. As I transition to new horizons and chapters I am extremely appreciative of all the help and support that I have been given by so many people throughout my experience at Oswego State. Though has congratulatory has things are now it wasn’t simple and nothing worth any particular value is not brought without dispute. Needless to say I have arrived and I have made it. I have rose to the challenge of being victorious over circumstances as did so many of the Class of 2009 graduates.

I plan to have an enjoyable summer and make this new phase count! As it relates to the economy, getting a job, transitioning somewhere new, paying my cell phone bill, and so many other challenges, I will just let it be a few lessons learned to continue to plug at opportunities and just continue being a good person because “your [my] spirit will take you [me] far,” Dr. Clark.

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