Life on South

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I spent my first year at Syracuse living in Lawrinson Hall. It was located near the edge of campus, next to the Dome and across the street from BBB (Brewster, Boland, Brockway). In that dorm I met great people, made great memories, and enjoyed a great view every time I looked out the window. Living there allowed me to learn the ins and outs of main campus and really experience campus life. Even though I loved it, when the time came to figure out where I was going to live sophomore year, I decided to head to South Campus.

Now I have moved into my apartment on Lambreth Lane. And while it’s completely different than Lawrinson, I love it even more. It has multiple rooms, a living room, AND A KITCHEN! I’m so happy I chose to live here.

One of my biggest concerns moving to South was getting back and forth to main campus. Fortunately, the buses regularly run on time and the bus stop is only a few minutes away. I can generally get from my room to main campus in fifteen to twenty minutes. Believe it or not, traveling from South to class isn’t much more difficult than traveling from Lawrinson Hall. However, it is also the first two weeks of school so I will keep you guys posted if anything changes as the winter months approach.

Maybe it’s because I’m from Jersey, but I really like how South Campus looks. There are hills, trees, lots of grass and the occasional deer. In addition to that, in the time I’ve been here I’ve seen some of the most amazing sunsets of my life. South has the look and feel of a small town mixed with the excitement of college life. It really is the best of both worlds.

The size of the apartment is a definite plus. In the dorm rooms, you could fit a lot of people in one room, but half of them would be standing up or sitting on the floor. In the apartment, people can come over and relax without having to fight for empty seats and wiggle room. This is helpful when you want to have a bunch of people over. It also helps you decorate and organize without feeling the need to cluster everything in one space.

Finally, the kitchen. Dining hall food is good, but there’s nothing like a home cooked meal. Knowing you can get out of bed and cook a full meal, or finish class and have something to go home to, is definitely worth it. Having a kitchen gives you much more control over your diet which is super important for living a healthy lifestyle. It also gives you a chance to impress your friends with some culinary skills.

Since moving to South, my experience as a student has improved. With more freedom to explore our entire campus, I have discovered many hidden gems I was unaware of before. I’ve also gotten to hang out with more of my friends who live on either South or main. These two weeks have been some of the best I’ve had at my short time at this school. I look forward to more adventures and seeing more of what South Campus has to offer.

 

Jalen Nash ’20 is studying pyschology in the College of Arts & Sciences. He was raised in Flatbush, New York and attended high school in New Jersey. In his free time, Jalen enjoys playing football and basketball, listening to music, reading, and writing. Jalen hopes to make a living, and be remembered, for his writing. More blogs from Jalen Nash.

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Hangout Spots

We’ve all been there: you get out of a class, you step out into the brisk Syracuse air (or in the case of the past few weeks, the blistering Syracuse heat), you check the time on your phone, and you’ve got a whole hour to kill before you have to be anywhere else.

It’s not enough time to make going home worth it – or maybe it is, but there’s no way you’d be able to face going back out again when you’re home, where your bed is. I’ve managed to narrowly avoid this situation for most of the semester thus far, but on Wednesday, I got out of a test 45 whole minutes early, leaving me with just over an hour until my next class. What was I going to do, twiddle my thumbs? Wander aimlessly around the quad? No! Here’s what you do:

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Hendricks Steps

Hendricks Chapel is probably one of my favorite buildings on campus, but in the interest of full disclosure? I’ve never actually stepped inside it. Are there pews? Are there pillars? I’ve heard it’s beautiful. A friend of mine had a choir concert there last year and said it was lovely. The thing that makes Hendricks my favorite spot on campus is its steps. On a sunny day, sitting on the steps of Hendricks Chapel, you can see clear across the quad. The people-watching is excellent. If you’re really lucky, you can climb to the top, then sit out on one of the pillars that jut out on either side of the stairs. Pull out your laptop, throw in some headphones, or just enjoy the view all on its own.

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The Noble Room

Alright Meg, you’re saying as you read this, but what if it’s not a nice day? Fear not! Hendricks Chapel can still provide. The ground-level doors to Hendricks Chapel, on all four sides of the building, take you down to the basement, where my real favorite place on campus is: People’s Place. It’s a student-run shop that sells coffee, bagels, and is an oasis of Coca-Cola on our Pepsi campus. Naturally, the first step on any journey down to the Hendricks basement is to stop off for an Austin Powers (chocolate milk, hot chocolate, and coffee) or a snickerdoodle-flavored coffee. Then take a right, and find yourself in the cozy, comfortable Noble Room. It’s a quiet study space with armchairs, tables, and some very nappable couches, and it’s small and out of the way enough that there’s always a seat. I’ve probably watched an entire collective season of Parks and Recreation at those tables, and I’ve definitely done a few letter grades worth of studying there.

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Bird Library

Hendricks is my primary time-killing spot on campus because it’s central to the quad, but if your next class is in the Hall of Languages or Newhouse, you’ll probably want to camp out somewhere like Bird. The lower two floors of Bird are chock full of spaces to sit, spread out your things, and gab with your friends. If you’re looking to meet up with someone but don’t want to spend money on food while you’re doing it, the basement floor of Bird Library is 100% the move to make. The whole place is set up with collaboration and comfort in mind – circles of chairs, four-seater tables. Personally, I like the long, white table with the high top chairs. If you need a quiet study space, the second and third floors both have sitting areas with some comfy armchairs and, again, very nappable couches.

Syracuse University’s beautiful campus is constantly surprising me. Every semester I find a new crevice or corner to hang out that I’ve never really noticed before. These are just a few of my favorites, but our big beautiful campus is full of spots like these where you can carve out your own little space for a while. I invite you to come here and scope some more out for yourself!

 

Meg Burnard ’20 is studying Communication Sciences and Disorders and Linguistics in the College of Arts and Sciences. She grew up in Rochester, New York. Meg is a member of Democracy Matters, and in her free time she enjoys reading comics, going to concerts, and playing games with friends. More blogs from Meg Burnard.

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Keeping Orange in the Family

Emily (left) and Claudia

Three years ago, Emily Lewis accompanied her sister Claudia when she moved into her Syracuse dorm to start her freshman year. At 15, Emily wasn’t seriously thinking about college just yet. Sure, she got to see the campus, which she enjoyed, but a part of her was hesitant to set her sights on ‘Cuse. “At the time, Syracuse was her thing” she laughs and nods at Claudia, who’s smiling, too.

Claudia and Emily grew up in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and were about as close as any average siblings- they fought, then ignored each other for a bit, then got along. Before Claudia brought the Orange pride into the mix, the Lewis household was strictly University of Michigan- everything blue and maize. The girls’ older brother, mother and father are U Michigan alumni, and the Lewis’s make annual trips to Ann Arbor for football games. Basically, they were raised on college pride, so both Claudia and Emily knew that wherever they ended up for college, it would be a school with spirit. Claudia found that at Syracuse, but for most of her own college search, Emily focused on larger state schools like Penn State and Indiana University.

By the end of junior year, Emily was ready to apply to her top schools. In a way, she felt obligated to apply to Syracuse, since it had become a family school like U Michigan. “I felt like if I didn’t apply, I’d regret it for some reason, but I still didn’t think it was where I would end up.”

However, when she was accepted as a dual major in Arts and Sciences and Newhouse, she couldn’t pass up the opportunity.

Now, Claudia is a senior illustration major and Emily is a freshman dual major in arts and sciences and Newhouse, undeclared in both. They did not plan for their paths to both lead to Syracuse, but now they’re thankful. “We don’t hang out every second of every day, but it’s nice to know that if I want to talk about home or just see a familiar face, she’s there.” Claudia and Emily will share some memories at ‘Cuse, but their college experiences will each be their own. On the Hill, there’s room for both Lewis sisters to find their passions. Plus, since Claudia has a car, Emily has the luxury of getting off campus once in awhile! Claudia’s excited to spend her last year at Syracuse with her sister nearby. “I feel like everything is coming full circle- my college experience might be ending soon, but hers is just beginning. And now we’ll always have Syracuse, together.”

Samantha Trombley ’18, is public relations and policy studies major. She is originally from Franklin, CT. Sam is a member of Hill Communications, the on-campus public relations firm. She is also a member of the Girl Code Movement, the women’s club lacrosse team, and the Kappa Alpha Theta women’s fraternity. In her free time she enjoys hiking, volunteering, traveling, and spending time with friends. More blogs from Samantha Trombley.

Becoming Orange

Breona Jones-Rice ’19 started observing open heart and thoracic surgeries when she was still a high school student in Washington, D.C. Her passionate interest in biotechnology led her to Syracuse University, the school of her dreams, where she’s proud to be the first in her family to attend college.

As a biotechnology major, Breona is eager to conduct hands-on research and eventually pursue a pharmacology degree, so she can one day help develop new and lifesaving drugs.

Where I’m from…

I was born and raised in the nation’s capital—Riggs Park of Washington, D.C., to be exact. It’s a middle-class neighborhood that’s been home to my family for a very long time. The neighborhood is very tight-knit. Everyone is expected to be involved in some type of activity at the local recreation center.

What I do besides study…

I like to walk around campus or sit on the stairs of Carnegie while reading or listening to music. I also enjoy playing softball and going out to the batting cages to practice.

What I love most about Syracuse…

I love how much school pride there is and how much influence the students have on campus. People come from all over the world to attend Syracuse, which makes the campus very diverse. But the school pride brings everyone together. Everyone bleeds orange and, no matter what you’re going through, there’s always someone nearby to offer a helping hand.

What I plan to do with my Syracuse degree…

After receiving my bachelor’s degree in biotechnology, I plan to pursue my PharmD (Doctor of Pharmacy) degree and work with a pharmaceutical firm, researching and developing drugs.

 

Find out what Syracuse University can offer you.

Resume Building (Literally)

Summer’s comin’ in hot, and for a lot of college students, that means crunch time for internship hunting. Sam Schwartz, a fourth year student in Industrial Relations, took a different approach. He decided to do something big—he made the world’s largest resume.

I know what you’re thinking- how does one even go about doing that? Or come up with the idea? Sam was inspired by an internship application that required applicants to make something no one had ever made before. The application didn’t have a resume submission component, so he was worried he wouldn’t be able to come up with an idea that would showcase both his past experience and skills. But at 3:00 am on a Wednesday night in April, in the midst of applying to other internships, he thought, “hey, I could still show them my resume, I’ll just do it a little differently.”

Although there’s no official record for the world’s largest resume, Sam searched the web and didn’t find anything about other people trying to do something like this. He spent the following weekend building and filming his entire process, from designing the type on the computer to stenciling rows of letters on a tarp in Thornden Park. 

He spent countless hours hunched over, carefully lining up his stencils with the to-scale grid he made using yarn and stakes– since there was no measuring tape long enough for his 20X30 foott final product. A friend lent him a drone to get aerial footage, which shows just how huge this thing really is. Sam said there were definitely a few times he wanted to quit, especially when his alarm rang at 6:00 am on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. But he trudged on, and has a lot to show for it.

Sam’s video already has over 3,000 views on Vimeo. He recently took an internship offer at a creative advertising firm in Chicago, and although it’s not the same internship that inspired him to build the resume, he’s still glad he followed through with it. Sam admitted that right now, the 30 ft tarp is just taking up a lot of space in his living room. But the experience, and his video, are testaments to his skills. If you want to see more of Sam’s work, check out his portfolio (samschwartz.design).

 

Samantha Trombley ’18, is public relations and policy studies major. She is originally from Franklin, CT. Sam is a member of Hill Communications, the on-campus public relations firm. She is also a member of the Girl Code Movement, the women’s club lacrosse team, and the Kappa Alpha Theta women’s fraternity. In her free time she enjoys hiking, volunteering, traveling, and spending time with friends. More blogs from Samantha Trombley.

Preserving Your Long-Distance Relationship at College

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Your college experience will be influenced by the people you connect with and the relationships you build. People often emphasize the importance of starting college with an open mind. While this is great advice, let’s be real— everyone is starting this new chapter of their lives with different emotional attachments. Incoming freshmen often feel that in order to enjoy college, they must end their high school relationship –likely due to the widespread idea that previous relationships, especially those that are long-distance, don’t work in college. I however, have been in a long-distance relationship during my time at Syracuse and could not be happier. This is the reality for many freshmen entering college. If you want to maintain your relationship as you transition into college, I have found that commitment and communication are key.

Communication is critical.

Freshman year is full of drastic changes, so rather than fight it, be open to your relationship changing as well. You may have always talked on the phone at a certain time in high school, or eaten lunch together every day. That of course can no longer happen. But that doesn’t mean your relationship is dead. Shift your perspective and be open to a new normal. Communicate with your partner about what consistencies you need from your relationship and soon you’ll grow to cherish the new cadence of you and your partner’s routine.

Communication is critical to fostering a healthy long-distance relationship because you are simply not with each other as much as you were before. If there is an issue or you sense any red flags, be vocal about it. The only way to overcome obstacles in any relationship is to confront them directly and talk it out. Establish strong mutual trust with your partner and be open about the new activities in your life. This transparency will ease both of your emotions during times of self-doubt.

You shouldn’t feel the need to hold back on joining new clubs, or meeting new people. I have always been proactive in meeting new people and pursuing extracurriculars. Keeping busy doesn’t mean I don’t miss my partner, but it has allowed me to focus less on some of difficult realities of a long-distance relationship.

Accept that you will feel defeated and vulnerable at times, but be kind to yourself and your partner–this is all part of the process and it’s only temporary as you adjust to college life.

Make time to make it work.

Thank goodness we live in a time where technology is so readily available. It has enhanced the way we are able to communicate regardless of distance. Designate a time that works for the both of you to Skype or FaceTime and if possible, make it part of your everyday routine. Though you cannot feel your partner’s presence, you are able to hear and see him/her on the screen in front of you. It is inevitable that you will miss your loved one and I will tell you right now, it is not easy. But, take pride in the fact that you miss them and relish it because it means that you have someone worth missing. You share something so special that it makes your heart ache when you count down the days until you see them next. Plan surprise visits to your partner’s college or town–I guarantee you that the expression you will see on their face will make all the lonely times worth it.

Little things count.

Lastly, put in the effort. Something as small as a “good morning” text can make all the difference in your long-distance relationship. It is easy to get caught up with academic and social elements of college, but it helps to know that you are both putting in the effort to work on the relationship as a team, even if it is just a quick five-minute conversation. Sending periodic messages, checking in, or updating your partner about little nuances in your day-to-day life are much appreciated. They want to hear about your day and care about the little details, even if you don’t think they are worth mentioning. Remember, you are not in this alone; you have both have committed to a long-distance relationship with each other. And because you are not able to see each other all the time, every moment spent together will be that much more valuable than before.

Contrary to popular belief, you can still make your college career count without being single or “tied-down.” You know if your relationship is worth it. And if it is, give it a fighting chance as you welcome your first year at Syracuse University.

 

Eric Chuang ’17, is a  Public Relations major at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications with a minor in English & Textual Studies. Additionally, he is part of the Fashion & Beauty Communications Milestone Program. Eric is a California native, dog enthusiast, fervent traveler, and sushi connoisseur. When not taking Buzzfeed quizzes or coming up with clever Instagram captions, he can most likely be found jamming to Taylor Swift’s “1989” album. More blogs from Eric Chuang.

Making Time for Faith at College

At Syracuse there are so many different ways for students to make campus feel more like home. So far, I have become a part of a few groups— intramural sports teams, community service groups and Literacy Corps— but the community that is most important to me is the one I am a part of at 1 p.m. every Sunday, inside of Hendricks Chapel. As a Christian, Sunday is an important day on my calendar. Not only is it the last day of the weekend and the first day before classes begin, but it is also my time to rest, reflect on the week, and make a plan to improve in the future. A cornerstone of this process happens at the chapel. Nothing helps me gain the focus and perspective to do that more than the Sunday services.

I attended Catholic schools for six years before I came to Syracuse and have spent many years learning about my faith. So coming into my freshman year, finding a community that shared these same values was important to me. Luckily, the process to do so was a lot easier than I thought and I found that community pretty quickly. Within a few weeks on campus, I started going to Hendricks on Sundays. Not only was it great to worship and be around people doing the same, but it also gave me a sense of familiarity and belonging.  After attending my first service, I knew I had found a home. Since that day I’ve gone back to the chapel on a regular basis.

My experience is not an uncommon one. Many people attend these weekly services at both Hendricks Chapel and the Catholic Center, and I imagine they feel that same comfort that I do. In addition to Catholic Services, the university also offers services for members of many other religions so anyone can practice their faith. Hendricks is also non-denominational, meaning any person of any faith is welcome there. Although I haven’t personally attended any other services,  I  have friends that participate. They seem to love them as much as I do. I’m extremely grateful to go to a school that values faith and traditions— it goes a long way in making the students that come here feel at home.

 

Jalen Nash ’20 is studying pyschology in the College of Arts & Sciences. He was raised in Flatbush, New York and attended high school in New Jersey. In his free time, Jalen enjoys playing football and basketball, listening to music, reading, and writing. Jalen hopes to make a living, and be remembered, for his writing. More blogs from Jalen Nash.

Chasing my Syracuse Dream

""The first video game I ever liked was Madden 2008. I was good at it. I had a lock-down defense and I could break out for eighty yard runs at any time. I was about nine at the time so I didn’t really have anything else to do. My favorite mode though was the career mode. There you customize your own player, and work to make him the best football player of all time. My 6’1 quarterback, actually was the best of all time. And he was from my favorite school, Syracuse University.

As a kid, Syracuse was the only college I even knew existed. My parents went there, my close family friends went there, my favorite athletes went there, I was completely surrounded by Syracuse University spirit my entire childhood. So for the remainder of it, probably until high school, I wanted to go there.

But then high school came, and that dream faded away. I was a teenager, so naturally I wouldn’t want to go to the school everyone else went to, I wanted to try my own thing. I also wanted to go to school on the west coast, where it’s warm. Third, I didn’t think I had the grades to get accepted in the first place…which was probably the most important thing…

For a year and a half or so I basically gave up on the whole Syracuse dream, yes because I wanted to be different but mainly because I doubted I could ever actually go there. When the application process started last year, Syracuse wasn’t even on my list.  At the time, I was perfectly fine with that… but my mom wasn’t. She must’ve asked me one hundred times to put it on my list, and eventually I agreed just so she’d leave me alone. I put my all into the application process, my essays were relentlessly proofread, and I studied hard for the SATs, but even with all that I thought of Syracuse as a “reach school” and left it at that.

Fast forward to early March, at that point I had gotten into all the schools I applied to, and my mind was set on going to a private school in North Carolina. I don’t think I really wanted to go there… but at the time, I was still trying to be independent and do my own thing, so I thought I did. I told all my friends that’s where I was going, I told some of my family, I told everyone but my mom. I had the logo as my wallpaper, I put Raleigh, North Carolina in my weather app — I was really into it. At the time, I figured that if I jumped on the school’s bandwagon early, it wouldn’t hurt so much when I didn’t get into Syracuse…

But, then I got a surprise. Syracuse accepted me. To this day, I can still vividly see the way the word “Congratulations” lept off my phone screen. I remember the way my mom’s eyes lit up when I told her the news. And above all, I can remember the feeling. It felt like a relief, like an honor, and as though a new door had been opened for me all at the same time. I was filled with so much excitement and anticipation for my future. I felt like nothing could stop me from my destiny but me. No words can really do that feeling justice.

After being accepted, there was little doubt as to what school I would attend. Syracuse University was the place I was destined to be. The worst part after getting accepted was waiting. I officially accepted my offer in mid-April, so that gave me about four months of just waiting for the college experience I had always dreamed of. For me, this was too long a wait so I decided to enroll in Syracuse’s SummerStart Program.

SummerStart began in early July, and even though it meant giving up the last summer of my high school years, it also gave me an opportunity to acclimate to my new life, plan for my future, and meet a bunch of people I wouldn’t have met otherwise. Everyone had three classes, so even though we technically had work over the summer, it wasn’t an overly intense workload. These classes helped me a lot and before even starting the fall semester, I already had eight credits. This may not seem like a lot, but having these extra credits allows for more academic flexibility. And depending on what I decide to major in, they could be the difference between graduating in three years or graduating in four.

Outside of academics, many of the closest friends I have now, are friends that I met in SummerStart. There are people from all walks of life with different backgrounds. A lot of people came from New York, which is to be expected, but there was also a huge population of people who came from California. There were some people from Texas, some from North Carolina, some from Atlanta. There were actually students from every state as well as many international students from places like Turkey and Russia. The diversity of the students in SummerStart was great, and it gave me ample opportunities to learn new customs and be exposed to different lifestyles and cultures. Coming into the fall semester with an already established friend group has undoubtedly made the transition to college easier. I credit my experience at SummerStart as one of the main reasons I am so happy to go to this school now.

My journey to Syracuse University was an eighteen years long. And despite all of the twists and turns life has thrown at me, I made it. The process of getting to this point has showed me two things. One is to never give up on your dreams. Often what you want will seem impossible, you may even begin to doubt it yourself, but if you stick with it, any goal you have can be accomplished. The second thing I learned is not to be afraid of taking a chance. I did not want to apply to Syracuse in the first place because I was afraid of rejection. If it wasn’t for me putting myself out there and overcoming these fears, I wouldn’t be here right now. And right now, I am literally living my dream.

Jalen Nash ’20 is studying pyschology in the College of Arts & Sciences. He was raised in Flatbush, New York and attended high school in New Jersey. In his free time, Jalen enjoys playing football and basketball, listening to music, reading, and writing. Jalen hopes to make a living, and be remembered, for his writing. More blogs from Jalen Nash.

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Why I Went Orange

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When deciding on how to address giving advice on choosing a college, I considered my stylistic options. Should I make a list of considerations? Should I take quotes from friends? Or, should I just reminisce and free associate?

I’ve decided on the last option. Three years ago, I was in your shoes, trying to decide where to go to school. I was down to four schools in April, all around the same price and fairly equal in academic prestige. I didn’t know how to make my decision. I visited each school over April break, and Syracuse was the last one I visited.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the other schools. The accepted students days were nice, and one university had the largest freshman dorms I’d ever seen. But none of them had that “wow” factor, which I couldn’t explain at the time but I think I can now. I was looking for a school that gave me butterflies, that made me so excited to be a part of the community that I wouldn’t feel like I was leaving home, but just going to a new one. I found that at Syracuse.

When I visited Syracuse for the first time, it was five days before I had to make my final decision on where to attend college. It was a beautiful spring day, and I was looking forward to touring Newhouse, seeing the quad- you know, the basics. The Accepted Students seminar in Newhouse was the first thing that made me think, “okay, there is something different about this place.” We heard professors and students speak about the amazing resources in Newhouse and broke up into small group tours. I felt welcomed and eager to start my own education here.

But the real catch for me was just walking around campus and seeing how happy everyone was. I saw students wearing Syracuse sweatshirts, Greek Life T’s, and club hoodies. I saw friends exchange quick hellos on their way to classes, happy to see each other but still keeping their eyes on the prize. It was the perfect blend of social and intellectual life that I did not realize I had been looking for. Not to mention how passionate people were about SU. One kid literally yelled at our tour group, “You’re gonna regret it if you don’t go here!” Okay, so maybe SU isn’t the right fit for everyone, but for me he was right- I’m thankful every day that I decided to attend Syracuse University.

My excitement only grew over the summer. Freshman year was a blur of excitement, new experiences and adjusting to independence. Going into my sophomore year, I was worried the novelty of college would wear off. However, I quickly realized that my love for Syracuse did not shrink- it only grew. Nervous excitement transformed into a comfortable familiarity. When I see student tours on campus, I smile wide because I want them to know that I truly love this place. I only have a year and a half left here, and it doesn’t seem like nearly enough time because I am so, so happy. However, I know that when the time comes, I’ll be ready to face the next chapter head-on, thanks to four years of personal growth and self-discovery here at SU.

 

Samantha Trombley ’18, is public relations and policy studies major. She is originally from Franklin, CT. Sam is a member of Hill Communications, the on-campus public relations firm. She is also a member of the Girl Code Movement, the women’s club lacrosse team, and the Kappa Alpha Theta women’s fraternity. In her free time she enjoys hiking, volunteering, traveling, and spending time with friends. More blogs from Samantha Trombley.

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Signing up for Random Roommates

When I was an incoming freshman to SU, I searched tirelessly on the “Class of 2017” Facebook pages, trying to sell myself to potential roommates. Somewhat unsure exactly what type of a roommate I was looking for, I announced to the group that I was seeking “anyone who likes to have a good time but focuses on academics as well.” All I was sure of was that I wanted a roommate whom I was able to research on social media first before committing to live with them. I had heard a few roommate horror stories and did not want to sign up for the arbitrary roommate algorithm. However, as the deadline for roommate selection approached, I still was not able to find the right fit and even turned down several options.

I took this as a sign that my roommate search was not meant to be, so I decided to just let the system determine my fate. I received my roommate assignment and was put in a quad, which meant I had three random roommates. This was a pleasant surprise because I was able to share a living room with my roommates in addition to two bedrooms in the space. Though I was pleased with the outcome of my dorm, I was still unsure about the roommates I was going to live with.

My roommates came from different backgrounds and all different parts of the country. One of them was from Atlanta, another from New York City, and the third from Los Angeles. To my pleasant surprise,  I made three new friends right off the bat. I learned about different parts of the country that I had never visited and gained insight into the different cultures of each person’s diverse background.

While we were all a bit apprehensive at first, we soon started hanging out together more and more. We bonded over shared TV shows, made plans to go to the dining hall, and explored the campus together. I especially got along with one of my roommates, Adam, who is also from California. We found out that we actually shared some mutual friends and talked endlessly about our California roots. It was really nice to meet someone who understood exactly what I was going through as a West Coast native living on the other coast for the first time. We also branched out and got to know our whole floor, eventually becoming friends with everyone on floor five. Brewster fifth floor became a really close-knit family and I finally felt that SU was my home away from home. That sense of belonging was something I had longed for and being able to experience it encouraged me and gave me the confidence I needed to make even more friends.

Getting out of my comfort zone and looking at this as an opportunity to meet new people ended up being far better than playing it safe and picking my own roommate. Sure, random roommates can be a hit or miss situation, but you’ll be amazed how taking that chance is sure to be rewarding in the end.

 

Eric Chuang ’17, is a  Public Relations major at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications with a minor in English & Textual Studies. Additionally, he is part of the Fashion & Beauty Communications Milestone Program. Eric is a California native, dog enthusiast, fervent traveler, and sushi connoisseur. When not taking Buzzfeed quizzes or coming up with clever Instagram captions, he can most likely be found jamming to Taylor Swift’s “1989” album. More blogs from Eric Chuang.

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