4 Years and 4 Roommates: My Story

I remember as a college freshmen, I was very nervous to find out who my first roommate was going to be. Living with someone you don’t know can be scary. This same “fear of the unknown” is something I went through multiple times. I have had four different roommates, one for each year of school. Three out of four of these roommates were randoms.

I really have gotten lucky with roommates. My first roommate and I had a lot in common. We got along great and even had a similar group of friends. To make a long story short, there was a conflict within our group of friends and I grew apart from them. My roommate and I at the time went from being close friends to more so acquaintances. He also had a girlfriend who would never acknowledge me, no matter what I did. It got pretty uncomfortable in that room at times.

During our second semester, one of my roommate’s friends had his roommate move out, so he moved into that vacant spot, leaving me with no roommate for the rest of my freshmen year. If you have a good roommate, having your own room isn’t that much different. The room is just quieter and there’s a lot more space for activities. About this first roommate, as the years went by, we actually became closer friends and he is even my neighbor now which is really cool.

I decided to keep my freshmen year room for my sophomore year and leave it up to fate as to who would lie in the empty bed sitting in my room. Turns out, it was someone I had met weeks prior to reserving my room once again. I was happy that this new roommate was at least someone I was familiar with. My second roommate turned out to be great! He also had a girlfriend, but this time, the girlfriend actually talked to me and because she was in the room so often, she felt like a third roommate. She was great to me so I really didn’t mind.

My sophomore roommate decided that he wanted to live off campus the following year, so I had to find a new roommate because I wanted to stay in the dorms. I became close friends with a guy that lived two doors down from me, so I asked him if he wanted to be roommates with me and he agreed so long as we moved to a different residence hall. I happily agreed.

My third roommate again was great. This was the first time I didn’t have a random, so I kind of expected this. At the end of the year, I was prepared to live with him again, but he got hired to become an RA. The RA job would come with his own room, leaving the adjacent bed empty for my senior year.

So I lied above. I actually had a fifth roommate. This roommate who came in at the start of my senior year was nice. He was a junior transfer, so the whole college thing was very new to him. I barely saw him and because I was so busy, he barely saw me. After three days, he texted me, saying that school was not for him and that he was preparing to drop out. At this point, I ran from the involvement fair in the campus center back to my room and caught him right on time to say our final goodbyes.

For the following three weeks, I would have my own room once again. It was fun, but because there are more students living on campus this year, I knew it had to end eventually. I was told by a friend on my floor that there was a freshmen who was being bullied by his roommate and was looking for somewhere new to live. I had only met this guy once before, so it very much felt like taking the same plunge as when I got a random at the start of the year. I agreed to let him move in and it definitely was the right decision.

My relationship with my current roommate is different than that of my other three, and that’s not to say it’s a bad thing. My previous three roommates are in my social circle. They would be the people I would hang out with during the weekends or on a random night. This time, my roommate has his friends and I have mine. Even though this is true, we still have become very close over the course of the year. We talk a lot to each other and it’s really fun to kind of look into the life of a freshmen once again, but this time, from the perspective of having been there.

Not everyone can say that they have become good friends with their roommates. Sometimes, it just wasn’t meant to be. I feel very lucky that not only did I become friends with all four of my roommates, but I see them all on a regular basis to this day. I do not take this for granted at all. If you are a freshmen and are worried about who may move in with you, just keep an open mind. You never know who you will meet or what will happen. Its a lot of fun leaving this up to chance.

The Half Day

The Half Day

Today, February 26th, we encounter so far the earliest call for cancelled classes in 2014. Afternoon and evening classes were all cancelled, and I could help but feel relieved enough to be able to find the perfect time to study and relieve some of my stress for the two exams I have this Friday. The reason of course for the cancellations was due to the insane snowstorm. The morning was pretty bad even though I didn’t experience how much worse it was around 8 am or 9. When I went outside to run to the bus to go to my 10 am class, I had so much snow all over my clothes as I entered that bus. It was fun, sort of, having to fight the wind and sneaky snow that would find its way passed my glasses and hit my face a little under my scarf. Weirdly enough, I wish I had taken footage of it. The weather here makes you feel like you want to say: “Oh my gosh!”

Spending the day studying meteorology and doing my Insanity workout later in the day is definitely what I look forward to when it comes to feeling better about myself. All I seek is the sense of relief nowadays. After the exams, I think I’ll be just on track with everything. I almost can’t wait for this to be over. I look forward to the spring break coming up. I hope everyone is taking this day as a rest and relaxation type of day unless you have to study and get your relief afterwards.  Whatever is happening, enjoy your half day of classes everyone.

Stress is in the air!

Stress is in the air

Some of us have either taken or will take their first exams soon and begin stressing. I recently had a relaxing Chemistry exam, but I know I won’t be as relaxed when it comes to taking two exams this coming Friday for Meteorology and Ethics. The amount of studying I put per day increases the closer the exam day arrives. I wish I could reverse that fact, but I always tend to “procrastinate” my study time. I usually take notes, place the notes in the back of my folder, and never look at them again until the week before the scheduled exam date. I usually begin studying by the week before an exam arrives.

The classes we all take should be well balanced for the reason of less stress input. Balancing out classes reduce the possibility of feeling overwhelmed with added chance of having an exam for two or more classes on the same date. Sometimes I feel like I work better under pressure, but that is risky to my health. When I researched about stress on the website: medicalnewstoday.com, I found that we generally use the word “stress” when we feel that everything seems to have become too much. We are overloaded and wonder whether we really can cope with the pressures placed upon us.  Therefore, I am stressed in the general manner. The thing is, I hope myself or anyone else doesn’t get themselves thinking too much and stressing over things because of the possible effects from it.

  • Blood pressure rises
  • Breathing becomes more rapid
  • Digestive system slows down
  • Heart rate rises
  • Immune system goes down
  •  Muscles become tense
  • We don’t sleep, resulting in a heightened state of alertness

This list is derived from medicalnewstoday.com; where we all can self-evidently see that stressing is not a good thing both mentally and physically. I can only give the advice to stay as calm as possible, even if you have a sort of pessimistic view. Know that your physical health is what you should take into priority. Decide and learn to make or take easy shortcuts within your studying or schedule planning to reduce any chance of the possible side effects from stress.

It’s getting warmer

It’s getting warmer

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After walking outside of cooper dining hall for lunch in February 21, I couldn’t continue without taking a decent picture of the snow melt and the clear sky indicating the increase of temperature. I can’t wait until the warm weather kicks in. SUNY Oswego looks and feels amazing when it’s warm and you can see the green in the ground and up top on the trees. I want it to feel like when I first moved in during August. A warm sunny day minus the bags I had to travel with from the campus center to Cayuga Hall. Those enjoyable times are about to arrive once again and I can only feel great about expecting them.

Although the temperature is warm for the week, the weather is bound to get a little messy as the days progress. I’m expecting quite a bunch of rain to be bothering us; just as much as the snow did when we arrived back from winter vacation. There’s probably some more snow to expect, especially if we go along with the outcome of groundhog day when the groundhog saw it’s shadow. Thus indicating there are six more weeks of winter.

Whether its cold or not, I look forward to the sunny days because only they make me feel like I had a good day. Whenever it rains, I feel either down or uncomfortable, probably because of the humidity. Hope everyone enjoys the weather up here until the spring and summer vacations.

On February 24, the storm came in. I guess this is what we get for the beautiful weather. However, the whiteout we are getting this week is beautiful, too (as long as you’re indoors). The weather is always interesting here in Oswego. One can’t help but love it.

The Power of Just Showing Up

“Showing up is 80 percent of life.” -Woody Allen

Woody Allen’s quote above is easily one of my favorite quotes. I am almost at the end of my college career and lately I have been reflecting back on just how I made it this far. There are a decent amount of students who end up not making it this far. I have had friends who have dropped out, failed out, or have struggled along the way. College isn’t easy, but with the right attitude and strategies for success, succeeding is extremely possible.

I am a believer in the power of just showing up. There are so many times when I wake up in the morning and don’t want to go to class. I feel lazy and tired. My bed feels way too nice upon just waking up. I’m sure everyone can relate to this. In the end, I force myself out of bed each morning and once I enter the classroom, I am excited to start my day and gain some wisdom.

I could have chose to skip class, but I know that is never the right decision. Even if I am struggling in a class, just being there for each one has definitely made a good impact on my grades. I would feel lost if I just skipped. I believe I remember at my orientation, the staff repeated the phrase, “Go to class!” over and over again. I now understand why.

Aside from just going to class, just showing up is probably the biggest reason why I became so involved in the clubs I joined on campus. When the clubs held meetings, I showed up. When I had to go through training to learn how to operate equipment at WTOP or WNYO, I just showed up and others assisted me with the rest. When I show up, people get to know who I am because they get to see me and we get to talk to each other. There is no way I would have multiple leadership positions if I just sat in my room and took the easy way out.

Next time you have somewhere to go, the most powerful thing you can do is just get out of your room and arrive where you need to be. That’s 80 percent of the battle right there. Once you’ve shown up, the other 20 percent is just doing what you need to do.

Sundays

Sunday seems to be that one day that most college students spend procrastinating. Although it’s not recommended to do your homework so late in the week, the good thing is that we can all get our work done on time most of the time. It’s almost a social thing to do your homework so late because you mostly want to spend the weekend with your friends and hang out and share memories and all. I feel like I procrastinate for this reason most of the time besides special occasions like being sick and just being straight lazy. Sometimes within my laziness, I find myself reading and following up on trends I tend to follow up on through Facebook and Twitter; things I don’t usually do. I don’t know exactly why I don’t always read up on news articles but to me it seems like I can trust to find things out from my friends. Whether I hear rumors or not, I always look things up for whatever news I hear from friends.

Usually on Sundays I look forward to eating brunch with my friends, the best meal in my opinion. I mean who wouldn’t want pizza along with their cinnamon toast?  It’s unique and not really a meal you have everyday which is what I like about the dining halls. I could get used to eating the same food three times a day every day as long as there’s Saturday and Sunday to mix it up a little.  I feel like now that I’m writing about Sunday, I see that I actually do more than I thought I usually do. Whenever I look back to a Sunday, I always have in mind: “Oh I didn’t do anything besides procrastinate hah.” I would either think this or tell it to my friends whenever they ask: “how’s your day going? “ Or ironically if someone specifically asks: “how was your Sunday?”  

Recently I’m recovering from my cold still and I almost can’t wait to feel completely recovered. It really is sad spending a week sick especially when I got it by pretty much asking for it. What happened was that after participating in an Insanity workout event at Oneida Hall on a Monday, I travelled back to Cayuga walking as fast as possible without a scarf on. I learned my lesson, but usually I always tell myself I learn my lesson when I consider the different ways I get sick. I almost always get sick in some unique matter, and I hope I won’t have to find out any more new ways to get sick first hand. I hope you guys don’t take this campus’s windy and cold weather for granted. Stay warm, stay safe, and enjoy your Sundays procrastinating!

Os “WE GO”: Gabrielle Reimann – “She Is Everywhere”

If you happen to attend history club on Tuesday evenings, after a possibly long session of a Student Association meeting, or walk through the Campus Center at 6:55 on a Saturday morning, it is impossible to avoid the welcoming face of Gabrielle Reimann.

Reimann is a junior at SUNY Oswego and is a dual major in history and political science. In her two and a half years here, Reimann has defined campus student involvement and charisma, for purposes benefiting both her own personal life and the college as a whole. Many people that know her know that she doesn’t sit still for very long. She is a member of the Political Science Club, a two-term president of the History Club, a recently inducted SA senator, a member of VEGA, the Junior-Senior Women’s Honor Society, and an employee of Campus Life, who works as a building manager  in Campus Center. She does all of this while also finding a spot on the President’s List for her grades last semester.

“I had the privilege of having Gabrielle in my beginning poetry writing class,” English and creative writing professor Charles Itzen said. “She was an excellent writer and tremendous role model for the other students. Gabrielle has really taken advantage of the multitude of educational and professional opportunities at SUNY Oswego. She is everywhere. I used to joke with her that the college will probably have to close when she graduates. She certainly represents the best of SUNY Oswego.”

Reimann during her induction ceremony for VEGA, SUNY Oswego's Junior senior Honor Soceity

Reimann during her induction ceremony for VEGA, SUNY Oswego’s Junior-Senior  Women’s Honor Society

When she is at her home in Somers, New York when school is not in session, Reimann works at a day camp, various retail stores, Subway, and is a certified EMT and volunteers for emergency services.

“Gabbi is one person I know who has been through a lot but still manages to do absolutely everything she can,” History Club vice president Jackie Giotta said. “She lets nothing stop her.  She truly does not let one thing bring her down, and she rises high above all of that.”

 Over this past winter break, Reimann interned at the American Museum of  Natural History in New York City and at age 19, was even offered a job by Al Jazeera, an Arab satellite television network.

“I want to be in a classroom teaching somewhere, probably in a school that’s not well off because in a country where so much is expected from us, so many kids don’t get the adequate education and attention they need. If I can change the academic success of one kid, that’s one future I can help,” Reimann said.

As if she doesn’t do a lot as it is, Reimann said that she would still like to find time in her schedule to pledge Alpha Phi Omega, national coeducational leadership service organization, and join SAVAC (Student Association Volunteer Ambulance Corps.) Reimann will also be spending her spring break in Florence Alabama, volunteering for Habit for Humanity, an international organization that builds affordable houses for low income families.

“If you want to be successful and you want to be a well rounded individual, the person people look at and say, ‘hey, this person is in control of what she wants to do and she wants to make something of herself,’ you have to make sacrifices, which might be really time consuming, to develop your resume and learn things that you don’t know,” Reimann said. “Because every day’s a learning experience so the only way you’re going to learn to the extent that you want to is to go out and do stuff.”

The Cold Never Bothered Me Anyway

The cold never bothered me anyway

                Hello all, I just felt like addressing the weather here in Oswego. It’s practically bipolar as most of us know, but to those new incoming freshmen who come to read up on our blogs, guess what, it can be pretty warm after a while here in Oswego! Honestly I think it all depends on where you live and how long you live in Oswego until you get to really judge what cold really is to you. This may be confusing, but let me break it down. We all start off by attending events in Oswego before our freshman first semester. Whether it’s Orientation or Acceptance Student’s Day, we notice the weather is quite warm and beautiful, reflecting an amazing image in your head that you will love it here. Trust me you will enjoy it more when you experience the first snowfall or whiteout here on campus. I know the first time there was a whiteout, I was surprised and quite frankly, I found it pretty cool as long as I was indoors of course.

Weather-wise, you’re better off not bringing an umbrella to SUNY Oswego. I STRONGLY suggest you don’t invest in one for your time here. Why? Well we have this lake, Lake Ontario, and it loves to send northbound Canadian wind southwards towards us, creating these wind tunnels that will either simply have rain/snow hit you sideways or break your umbrella/have you flying. Overall the weather is a pretty sight to look at sometimes, especially from the new Shineman Center. When living in west campus, I can only recall there being a wind tunnel in front of Onondaga and in between Seneca and Cayuga Halls. I’m not completely sure of any other wind tunnels to look out for. The real “danger” to look out for is when all the snow covering the ground by a foot or two start to turn to ice.  It’s difficult to walk through and I usually go through a shortcut to west campus located south from the quad near Hewitt union heading towards Tyler Hall. This is a shortcut most people, and more than likely, you, will be used to taking throughout those warm spring and autumn days. However in the winter, I’d rather go around it or challenge myself to go through the shortcut.

When it comes to the temperature, you do feel it being a little cold over time and it does get chillier. Considering your first semester however, the more time you spend here, the more accustomed you are to the gradual decrease in the average temperature throughout your first semester. You, or a handful of people, start getting a sort of superiority complex when you go back to visit in your vacations usually only if you are from NYC or some other southern city. For example, you go about eaves dropping on your friends complaining about how cold it is and you go and chuckle in their face saying the weather there is nothing compared to Oswego. Well… Oswego kind of bites you back again when you travel back to prepare for the beginning of your second semester. You realize just how cold it really is where every day feels like the temperature is in the single digits, sometimes at subzero.

If you think about it, these kinds of temperatures can be considered as “decent” to those living off campus within the city of Oswego. Why is it all of sudden like a reset? Where it’s like you never felt real cold before? This is because you got accustomed to the temperatures from back home so quickly. The reason why I bring this up is because I experienced this first hand and was shocked seeing people in shorts as I was travelling back to Oswego from a Greyhound bus transferring to a Centro bus. I was pretty much cocooned in my winter coat while I see a couple of people walking by in a lot less attire.

All I can suggest is make sure to be prepared guys. Bring boots for the snow, not for show. Grab a warm coat and enjoy your time here in SUNY Oswego. It’s a new experience for all of us.

Valentine

My Valentine’s Day spent sick

          Being sick really ruins a lot of plans. I mention this because lately I’ve had a strong cold throughout this week, or Valentine’s week. Hope everyone had an amazing Valentine’s Day whether it was spent with your significant other or with your friends. People who were pretty sick, well, I feel for you. I didn’t know what to do without risking myself getting sicker if I had gone with my friends ice skating or travelled back to NYC to meet with my significant other. Instead, all I felt I could do is decline the fun in ice skating (even though I can’t skate and would probably be engulfed from embarrassment whenever I’d fall) and go stay in my dorm to have a Skype call with my girlfriend. For me, it’s more deserving taking care of my health in which I had to think thoroughly about with the help of my best friend. She told me I should just go to the Mary Walker health center, but at first I had refused the chance to go because it would be my first time going. It always feels weird to me going somewhere the first time. On Valentine’s Day, my fourth day being sick, I chose to go and my doctor recommended I take Zyrtec and so far, I’ve been feeling better since then.

This week hasn’t been anything I would have looked forward to, but I am happy to take care of my health in the end. I hope everyone had a safe Valentine’s night and best of luck for all of you that started your relationships. Love forever.

 

Welcome Post

Hello!

My name is Luke Parsnow and I am a junior at Oswego State. I am a double major in journalism and creative writing and a minor in history with a concentration in American history. I am from Sterling, New York which is only 12 miles from Oswego.

I have been a writer since I could learn how to write. Arguably, I was a writer even before then. My grandmother predicted that I would be a writer when I was three days old, the day I came home from the hospital and the first time she held me. And I have since, not disappointed her. I started writing seriously when I was in second grade. I actually wrote to my teachers and asked them if I could come in early before school started and use the computer to type up my stories since I didn’t have a computer at the time (I live on a dirt road in the woods.) And when my household finally DID get our first computer, the latest and greatest 1989 Windows 3.0 special…in 2003, I didn’t use it for the things all my friends were using it for. While they used it for gaming and things called chat rooms, I used Microsoft Word to write my stories. I wrote my first novel when I was ten and have since completed seven others. When I was 12, I began to learn to play the mandolin and guitar at 14 and soon took my writing to a new form: songwriting. I’ve recorded some of the songs I’ve written and some have been played on the radio out of Kingston, Ontario.

At SUNY Oswego, I wrote for The Oswegonian my first two years of school. This year, I became the Assistant News Editor and have written nearly 50 articles for the paper, along with editing other stories. Besides The Oswegonian, I’ve been published in the newspaper’s semeserly sports magazine, The Play Maker and The Legislative Gazette, a government and politics newspaper out of Albany. One of my creative stories was also published in SUNY Oswego’s student arts magazine, The Great Lake Review.

So now as a student blogger, I will continue to write in another new form. I will be bringing to you students that have made something of themselves at Oswego State and are sure to prosper later on in their life. Oswego is not just a state school on the edge of a lake that dumps a ton of snow on it. Oswego is a gem and a lot of great people are building their futures here. I will seek out them and tell their story because everyone has a story. And I will tell my story in between, along the way.