Wait, what month is it?

When I started Graduate School in late August of 2012 graduation seemed distant. Now, in the midst of my second semester, it seems to be coming up quicker than I thought. Though most people will explain Graduate School programs in years, 1-3, in the grand scheme of things Graduate School is only 4 semesters. When you break that down, it’s easy to lose track of time when you think of how the semesters themselves get fragmented with school work deadlines and, before you know it, it’s the end of the semester. 5 months flew by and you can barely remember what you did. This made me think about what was important to me, what I needed for professional development, and what I just needed to do to survive.

It was a hard decision to stop doing certain things that I had become accustomed to doing here at SUNY Oswego for the last few years (I received my Bachelor’s Degree from here, too.) I realized that in order to stay sane it was important that I did things that I wanted to do for me and stop thinking about the big picture 24 hours a day. Professional development is important and taking time out to do that is something everyone should do. However, sacrificing happiness now for future happiness wasn’t how I wanted to live my life. So I changed it. I left some things behind, adopted a new attitude, concentrated on a few things instead of a handful, and opened my self, and my schedule, to new experiences. One of the most important things that I’ve picked up along the way is that personal development, learning more about who you are, will help you in the long run when developing yourself professionally. With a more relaxed schedule no longer filled with the stresses of simply too much to do, my spring semester has slowed down in comparison to the fall of 2012. I take my school work one day at a time and leave enough time for me to relax, go nuts, enjoy food, favorite sporting events, and well- anything else I want.

The semester ends when?!

Like most students on campus, I’ve been as busy as ever juggling  jobs and classes, relationships and hobbies, and most of all… me time. This also means that I neglected updating all of you with how my semester was going. So, here it goes. It’s been a long one. It’s interesting to see how far I can push myself and it’s really rewarding when the grades that come back reflect the work that’s been put in. Graduate school is no joke, but at the same time I feel that this is where I’m supposed to be and that I was prepared for the work. Civic Engagement is going well, we were super busy until the election and now we’re planning for next semester, which is just as time consuming. The Women’s Club Hockey team is off to a decent start, not where we usually are at this point but we picked up our play as of late. Coaching teaches me a lot about leadership roles, professionalism, the game of hockey, and myself. Right now we’re 5-3-0 with a few games left this semester to improve that quite a bit. It’s something that I love to do, though it’s really time consuming. On a lighter note, being a graduate student means no finals! it also means that there are only 8 days left in my semester. Definitely thankful for that. Well, hope all of you are doing well. I’ll try to get on this more often to keep it updated.

Still Here to Tell the Tale

Hello, everyone, and welcome back to another year at SUNY Oswego (or, to freshmen and transfers, welcome to your first year). I, for one, am so ecstatic to be back and am looking forward to my senior year. There are definitely nerve-wracking worries, such as student teaching in the spring (with absolutely no education classes left save the Practicum that I am doing this semester), but I have a fairly good feeling that this will be a really good year, and my hope is that everyone else feels the same way – positive and confident. If you’re new here, just know that, for the most part, I have had a very good experience here at SUNY Oswego. My experience here has been great, not only because I feel like I have had a really good education, but because just about everyone that I have encountered is very friendly and welcoming, and I have yet to experience any kind of persecution due to my sexuality, and that is ultimately the first experience of my life about which I can say that. SUNY Oswego prides itself on being a “safe space” for people, so persecution because of race, religion, sexuality, you name it, is not tolerated, and based on my own experience, it isn’t even something that you have to worry about.

My plans for the future are somewhat complex, as I have yet to sort some problems out. My boyfriend is here and is way behind even though he is the same age because many of his transfer credits don’t count toward classes that he needs to take, so he is considered a junior even though he should be a senior. This means that we will not graduate together, and he will need to stay a year longer than I do, but I am not prepared to leave him behind. I am twenty-one, and he will be twenty-two in November, so we are certainly not children, and I’m more than ready to begin a life with him. I would absolutely love to find an apartment with him by the end of this year, stay in Oswego over the summer, and then complete my graduate work here at SUNY Oswego. However, money has to be taken into consideration, and the job that I have doesn’t pay nearly enough to provide me with confidence as far as saving up for an apartment is concerned, and I neither have the time nor the ability to work a second job (ability only because I have actually tried, and no one hires). I applied to be a DA, figuring that that wouldn’t be a time obstacle because I could get homework done while I was working, but I didn’t get the position, and even if I could rely on someone actually hiring me, there really isn’t anything else I could manage to do, especially since, again, I am doing my student teaching in the spring. There is no way that I could balance that and two jobs. I just hope that, somehow, everything works itself out, because this is really important to me. Does anyone know if it would be possible (and if so, how) to take out a loan to help me pay for an apartment? I am considering this also because the job that I do have is work-study contingent, and although I don’t know for sure, I don’t think that that will still be provided beyond my undergraduate years. Again, I am really looking forward to this year and am hoping for the best. Good luck, everyone.

Back at My Dream Job

I’m nestled into a seat on Megabus, staring out the window as the bus leaves New York City and heads to Albany. I’m on my way home for Christmas and I absolutely can’t wait to see my family, yet I’m always a little sad when I watch the skyline disappear behind me.

I’ve been back in N.Y.C. for a little over a week now and I’ve fallen in love all over again. I’m living in a different area now — this summer I was in the Village, right by Union Square, and now I’m subletting a room from a Columbia student on the Upper West Side — but I’ve found just as many quirks as I did before. There are cute diners, boutiques and a Starbucks on every corner. Since we’re mentioning Starbucks, let me just say I’ve realized how lucky I am that I don’t like coffee — I save so much money!

Anyway, the living arrangements aren’t that bad. Yeah, it’s a little pricey, but everything is pricey in the city. You just have to learn to suck it up and take it as part of the package. I don’t have Internet at my house, which is why the blogs have been few and far between. When I get home from work, I usually head to the gym and then it’s time to go to sleep so I can wake up early for work again. Unfortunately, that doesn’t leave me with much time to walk over to Starbucks to snag some free Wi-Fi. I’m sure I’ll do it though!

Just like before, I love everything about working at FITNESS. I received such a warm welcoming, and our editor-in-chief even said it was like I had never left. It makes me happy that I left everyone with such a positive impression, and it drives me to work as hard as I possibly can to maintain that reputation.

I can’t give too many details of what I’ve been doing right now because I can’t let the competition in on our secrets! But I will say that I’ve been doing a lot of researching and writing, so keep your eyes peeled for my byline! Last week was really awesome too because I went to a photo shoot with a celeb personal trainer! Which one? You’ll have to wait and see! I love that I get to meet such awesome people and incorporate so much fitness into my job. You know you’ve found your dream job when it combines two of your passions. Not to mention every day goes by so fast. Even if I happen to be making a lot of photocopies, the day zooms past and I never find it dragging.

Also, make sure you run out and grab the January issue that’s on newsstands now! My picture is in there — can you spot me?

What kind of things do you want in your dream job?

Living the Crazy, Good Life

Life in New York City is crazy.

But in such an amazing, satisfying, beautiful way.

I’ve been so extremely busy at work but I love every second of my day. I work almost nonstop from 9 a.m. to around 5:30 p.m., but I love everything I’m doing. The days just fly by and then I have events to go to at night so I can get my networking on.

Tonight I went to a Microsoft preview event at Stage 37 with my ASME mentor, Lorelei, and my ASME coordinator, Nina. Technically, they were set up with me to help me succeed, but they’ve become so much more than that. They’re my friends, my confidantes, and they’ve got my back in this crazy magazine industry we all love to immerse ourselves in. Believe me, there’s nothing like having a few good people behind you to make sure you succeed in the end. And when you’re friends with those who have already broken into the industry, it’s even better.

So back to the Microsoft event. They had some pretty cool new equipment coming out — my favorite involved a system for the XBox 360 called Kinect. It tracks your movements through camera sensors and allows you to move around without any controllers. My favorite game was Dance Central, which was made in collaboration with MTV Games. It reminded me of Dance Dance Revolution, but it’s a lot less complicated and more fun. You can pull off silly dance moves (such as disco moves and chicken leg) and advance the levels through a wide variety of songs. We were able to test out the game right then and there, and it was a lot of fun. Personally, I rocked Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.” This game is definitely going to sell.

But my night wasn’t over.

After we left Stage 37, we headed over to West 30th for Robert Verdi’s fashion event. It was held at this really high-end apartment (I wish I could live there) and we enjoyed casual conversation while learning about his new endorsements. I wish I had some pictures of the apartment for you, but here’s some of the stuff from the goodie bag.

There was a lot of other great stuff in the bag, but Lorelei, Nina and I split the bag.

So that was basically my day, once you add in a lot of work for FITNESS, too. Oh, and did I mention I had lunch with the Deputy Editor at The New Yorker today? Yeah, that also happened.

So yes, I love my life. I’ll have some more stories for you soon!

The Summer Is… Almost Here

I know that I recently talked about this in a blog entry, but I just can’t believe how close to the end of the semester that this is. A week from Friday is my first day of the Summer, and it is a major relief. I mean, at the same time, it is overwhelming, because between now and then, I have seven major assignments that I need to complete, including a 2,000 word paper for my English class. You see, I don’t have any final exams; everything that is due is either a final paper or a final project. I am pretty sure that I talked about all of that in my last blog entry, though, so I won’t bore you.

I made a list last week of everything that I needed to do between then and the end of the semester. There were then thirteen assignments on that list, and it’s now down to seven, as I said, so I am making progress. There is a lot due this week, which is something for which I am actually thankful. With so much being due this week, time will be left this weekend to work on my final paper for English, and that is the really big thing; once that is finished, a lot of stress will be alleviated.

I am really looking forward to this summer. Of course, for a couple of weeks, from late May to mid June, I am doing a couple of summer courses, one of them a Science course, but hopefully, it won’t be too bad. I am taking Safe Schools and an Exploration in Natural Sciences course. I am a little nervous about the Science course, but I need it, so I figured that I would much rather take it for a couple of weeks in the summer than take it for an entire semester during the school year. Besides, I am trying to graduate a semester early, so taking courses over the summer will help me do that. Other than that, though, my life has been pretty uneventful. I haven’t been able to do much that is interesting or fun because of all of this work, but I am looking forward to an eventful summer.

Spring Is Finally Here!

It’s funny to think about how drastically my mood changes when the weather starts to change, when winter starts to become spring. The temperature begins to increase, and more importantly, the snow goes away, and you can start to dress lighter, finally. My Spring Break was great, despite having a lot of work to do. I had so much homework to do for my Lit 396 class, which involved a great deal or reading and writing, I began reading the Sookie Stackhouse series (on which HBO’s True Blood is based) a few weeks ago, and I am still on the first novel, Dead Until Dark, because I have no time to read for pleasure. I was going to bring it home for Spring Break, but I’m glad that I didn’t, because I wouldn’t have had time for it, anyway.
It’s all right, though. Summer is coming really soon, and some of my friends are talking about the possibility of taking online courses, something that I don’t see myself doing. I will most definitely be fully prepared for a three-month break in May when school gets out, and I actually have an exciting plan in motion for July. My boyfriend Ray and I are going out of state (West Virginia, I believe) to go ghost-hunting, and we will be stopping at an old prison that is reported to be haunted in Moundsville, West Virginia. I am really excited and will definitely be blogging about that really soon.
Other exciting news is that on April 1st, my friend Fady from California will be coming to visit and will be staying here for a little over a week. I am really excited about that, because we have been trying to get together for quite a while now, and finally, it’s happening. I can’t wait to show him the lake and take him around the city. He lives not too far from Los Angeles, a suburb of Los Angeles, actually, so he is used to a really busy, chaotic setting, so this will be kind of new to him, as will the weather. It will be sixty to seventy degrees here while we’re outside in shorts and a t-shirt, and he’ll be “freezing” cold since he’s used to really hot temperatures. It will definitely be a really fun and interesting experience, and I can’t wait.
Also on April 1st is the return of my favorite TV show, Fringe. I am really excited about its return; it is returning what looks like an incredible episode titled “Peter.” If you’re someone who doesn’t follow the show, then feel free to tune me out for a few seconds here, but I love the show, and I would even go as far to say that I have an unhealthy obsession with it. I pretty much always love anything that J.J. Abrams does. I loved Alias when it was on and still do. I watch LOST, and Cloverfield is an amazing movie. If there is anyone who is interested, I am starting a Fringe blogsite,
Let’s see, what happened over break? I went to see a school production of Godspell with Ray, which wasn’t bad. I thought that it was really preachy, but the singing and everything was really good. I also got into a musical duo called Nox Arcana. It’s definitely not music for everyone, but there is a lot of piano and organ, which I love, and also a lot of Medieval influence, which I love. It is primarily instrumental music and is very dark and dramatic. I just absolutely love it.
Wednesday, I begin the second day of my Practicum, and unless I am placed into a different classroom, it is primarily going to consist of observing a study hall again, since, as I said in my last Practicum Journal, Corcoran High School used a Block Schedule method, so my Practicum teacher has an English class in the afternoon every other day, which means that every other Wednesday, I observe a study hall. I will most definitely be posting my Journal again, though, so be on the look-out for that, since I will try to post it Wednesday.

A New Day in the Old Town

It’s so hard to believe that we’re nearly halfway through the semester already. Tomorrow, well technically today, I suppose, I have to take my English 304 midterm, and I am very nervous about that, because I remain pretty confident that I am going to get a pretty terrible grade on it. I am just not used to this kid of English course. Ever since middle school, English classes did not involve actual assessments but instead portfolios which consisted of written work throughout the year, and now, I have to take an actual written assessment in the traditional sense, and I have a multitude of different terms that I need to know the meaning of as well as a multitude of different names that I need to associate with literary periods, and I am really stressing out.

Basically, this semester has really been pretty on and off for me; it’s been pretty bittersweet, in other words. A lot of goodness has come out of this semester, a great deal that is much different than my situation last year. For example, I have an awesome roommate who I am so happy I asked to room with last year; there have been absolutely no issues whatsoever thus far, and I don’t foresee any taking place. There’s a great deal of respect between us, and I definitely think that that is the main reason why this is really working out for us. So, anyway, I am really happy with my living situation, which is currently Waterbury, and apart from the ear-piercing fire alarm, I love everything about it.

Other than that, though, like I said, I’m kind of struggling to sync myself with this English class, and additionally, I am taking Biology, and I am having a really tough time with that as well. I got my first test back last week, and I remember leaving the class in which I had taken the test, thinking that I had managed to pull of a solid C grade, but no, I didn’t have any such luck. I failed it miserably. I was really upset the day that I found out, but not that I’m the type to blame other people for my mishaps, but in this case, I really do think it’s partly my professor that is at fault for this grade, because she flies through the slides, and when a student will ask for the slide to be brought back up, because he or she didn’t have enough time to get everything down, she will say, “All of this is in the book,” so what I’m wondering is why I’m wasting time coming to class then if all of my learning is to be done from the book.

I learn by taking notes in class, letting that sink in and then going over my notes and deciding on what I understand and what I don’t, and what I am not quite absorbing, I resort to the book for, and I am having trouble doing that now, because I’m not learning anything in class. She did say the other day in class that all of the notes are on Angel, so I might just have to go there to read up on the notes, because this really is pretty ridiculous if I may say so myself. I cannot allow myself to fail this class; I really want to put all of my general education courses behind me so that I can get into my major. I honestly do not understand general education requirements. I’ve never in my lifetime going to use anything that I am learning in Biology, for example.

Anyway, I went home this past weekend, and that was really nice. I love this weather; and I love this time of year and everything that it involves. I love the Autumn air, leaves, apple cider and Halloween, of course. The only thing that I don’t like about is that almost all of the things that I love about Autumn, with the obvious exception of Halloween, are indicators that winter is coming, and I hate winter. I can’t stand snow, and I can’t stand the cold, and yes, I chose to Oswego, but don’t ask me why. Everyone always asks me that when I declare my detestation of the winter time, “Why are you going to Oswego then?” Well, I suppose that’s about everything that I wanted to cover this time around. Hopefully, I will be writing a bit more often, but there is just always something occupying my time, and it’s usually not something I’m having too much fun doing. I hope to write again soon, though!

“Summer Lovin'” and new apartment :)

Heyyyyy Oswego people!!!  Hope everyone is enjoying their summer, and if you are an incoming freshman you better be super psyched to be entering the best years of your life!  Atleast that is what it has been for me!  I’m going to be a Senior this year and it’t soo hard to believe :(  One more year with all my friends here, and one more year with the thing that has ruled my life for the past 3 years; SWIMMING.  As most of you know, I’m on the Swimming and Diving team here at Oswego, and I have loved every minute of it.  Sometimes I forget that I’m here for school :-p  To incoming freshmen, or anyone that did a sport in high school but didn’t continue in college:  Get yourself involved in athletics!  It helps you make great friends and believe it or not keep you structured and organized for your classes.  I know my coach is always on us about school, and if someone is falling a bit behind, he wont hesitate to tell them to shape up!  It’s a great thing to be involved in, and if you are serious about sports and fitness check it out!

Right now I’m actually working on getting in my new apartment for next year!  I’m at home now, but  going up to Oswego tomorrow with my sister to start getting stuff in there.  I’m moving in with a couple of my fellow teammates, who are also amazing friends by the wayy…..shout out to Marianne Munson and Kelly Williams!  I’m going to get everything all settled there, and work at the YMCA in Fulton for June before going home for the rest of the summer.

Well, I think that about covers it for my life as of late….. but I’ll be back in to tell how everything is going at a later date :)  Until then, enjoy the sunshine!!!!