Category Archives: General

Moving In & Welcome Weekend

Hey all,

Sorry I didn’t upload for… WOW, has it really been over a month?!  My bad…

This last month I’ve been CRAZY busy.  I actually got a freelance web design job and was doing that along with working two jobs and trying to pack for school.

Here are the biggest university-related things that have happened…

Packing was a biggie.  Move-in day was September 2nd for Transfer students.  I planned on having my dad drive his pick-up so we could fit everything in one vehicle, which we did.  Now, my dad is pretty up there (He’s 74!) but I thought just having the two of us would be fine since there would be a move-in crew helping.  Oh, except they forgot to mention that there would not be a move-in crew when it was my turn since apparently there were only 2 transfers moving in to my building.  And by the way, my building doesn’t have an elevator.  Awesome.  So needless to say (but I’ll say it anyway), I was completely sore and worn out for the rest of the weekend.

On the upside, despite the tiny-ness of my room since it’s a single, I fit everything in it and even got to return some shelving I bought since my room came with bookshelves!  I did have to buy a few more items that weekend though such as hand soap, toilet paper, dish soap, and paper towels.  It seems that most of the dorm bathrooms do not have soap dispensers or paper towels, and the toilet paper is probably the cheapest kind the school could possibly get.

So, once I was all moved in, it was time to go home, grab my car, and drive back to campus.  It was only then that I realized resident parking kind of sucks at my university.  First, you pay $500 for this “luxury” and then discover, as in my case, that the parking lot is seven blocks away.  And when I parked my car in my designated spot on Sunday, the shuttles weren’t running yet.  And yes, there are shuttles going from the main campus to the parking lots, but it only goes to mine once every half hour.  My friend’s roommate, for instance, went grocery shopping, parked in her lot, and of course had just missed the shuttle, which meant waiting at least 20 minutes for the next one.  And she had ice cream!  Poor, ice cream.  It turns out that I didn’t have enough financial aid left over to cover the parking fee, so I turned in my decal the following thursday just before heading home for the weekend (I don’t have class on Fridays).  To be honest, I don’t think I would’ve used it much, but it would’ve made getting home easier.

That whole first weekend I was on campus though, was a kind of welcoming weekend.  It’s important to know for this topic that the freshmen moved in on Thursday and transfer students moved in on Friday.  That’s it.  We were the only ones on campus until Sunday.  There were only two other people on my dorm floor, too – a freshman and my RA.  So, I didn’t actually know anyone.  This meant a lot of meals sitting alone, but that was certainly not the worst part.  The worst part of the weekend and the beginning of the semester in general was that I’m a transfer student.

During that first weekend, there were many events like workshops and trivia and karaoke and a talent show, and I was excited about all of them!  But the only workshop that wasn’t about laundry or managing money was closed due to the person being sick.  At trivia, I won $20 for answering a riddle (and I hadn’t even heard this riddle before, so I was very proud of myself!), so that was a fun event.  But the talent show was horrid.  They made it all about freshmen pride and completely ignored transfers.  And the freshmen already had like cliques and stuff from their week-long orientation over the summer, so of course the winners were freshmen and then both second and third place went to orientation leaders.  poo.  Karaoke was fun though.  And I’m pretty sure I was the only one who had actually gone to karaoke before (lol).  So, I hope they do that again 🙂

The first week went smoothly enough, with the only downfalls being a lack of money and the New Student Convocation.  This official ceremony was meant for ALL new students, but unfortunately ended up being focused on freshmen.  I think transfers were only mentioned a total of 3 times in an hour-long ceremony, and even then, it was pretty much as an after-thought.  There was nothing specific that pertains to transfers.  OH, and then they were like, you get a free t-shirt!  And I was happy cause I want to show my school pride, but then I found out that they were 2015 shirts.  >.<

Now, let me just point out that most students do not actually complete their degrees in 4 years.  It’s just a fact nowadays.  So the administration is making this huge deal about class pride, and the year of graduation isn’t even going to apply to them.  Why not instead just give them shirts that say “Freshmen, ’11” or something??  That would make more sense…

One last thing that irked me was that the freshmen got mentors.  Transfer students didn’t.  They expect me to know what all of the other upperclassmen already know, but each school is different.  I know the basics, but I could definitely use a more experienced transfer student as a guide.  I’m considering advocating for a transfer student support group or mentoring program, because we are really being left out in the cold.  And that’s with me being a resident!  I’ve spoken to commuting transfers, and they’re even more clueless.  I’m lucky in that I will ask questions, but I think a lot of students that are alone in a completely new environment may not have the courage to speak up and demand information.

Okay, I’ll probably post another update in the next day or two, I just don’t want to post a longer-than-normal entry.  🙂

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A slight delay

My wrist braceI did get my Dorm assignment on Wednesday, August 3rd… But I’ve been working extra this week while also setting up a web design job, trying to get into Pottermore, and setting up interviews for on-campus work-study job possibilities… Because of all of these things, I was not able to post in the last couple days about my packet.

Then today – pain.  My right hand/wrist (and I’m right-handed) is painful and stiff right now, so I can’t type a full post as it’s in a brace.

I hope to be able to post in the next couple of days, but If not then I’ll post about a few different topics when it feels better to make up for the time loss…

A little back story

I figure that you most be wondering why I’m just now starting to live on campus at the age of 24, so I thought a little back story was needed.

I graduated from high school in 2005.  I did take time off after high school ended to figure out what I really wanted to do, despite getting accepted to college.  I explored working full-time and the possibility of joining the armed forces.  After my dad had a heart attack (and survived) and my nephew was born, however, I decided that I did not want to be away from my family.

I started at my Community College (CC) and took a full course load of general studies classes while not having a declared major.  I loved it!  I decided I wanted to study English so that I could be an editor, so I transferred to a nearby State College.  Stupidly, I decided to go to school full-time while working the graveyard shift full-time and living in a noisy apartment building.  After a few semesters, I changed my major to Psychology after deciding English wasn’t for me.  I switched to studying part-time while still working full-time but this time as a waitress (non-graveyard shift).

In April of 2008, my brother died.  He died less than a week before finals, and I wasn’t able to finish the semester.  I later got the grade changed to a late withdrawal rather than a failing grade (due to a zero on the final).  In the months following his death, I took time to discover what I really wanted.  Life is too short to spend id doing something I don’t absolutely love.  I also didn’t think it was a wise use of my time to spend the next 10 years in school part-time just to end up with a Masters (and in psychology, you really need a doctorate).  I went back to a favorite pastime – Web and graphics design.

I transferred back to my CC to study Graphic Design, and I am so thankful that I made that change.  I started going to school full-time and really making school my top priority while only working part-time.  I even moved in with my fiance (whom I met at State College) and he offered to support me while I finish school.  After a year on the program’s wait list and two years in the program, I have my Associates degree in Applied Arts (Computer Graphic Design for Print and Internet Publishing).

I did start exploring my transfer options about a year and a half before graduating.  I joined my CC’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (an international honor society for 2-year schools) and researched schools I was interested in.  A year before graduation, I started going on campus tours and finding out about scholarships.  I ended up starting applications to 3 private schools and 2 state schools.  I only finished my application to one state school and one private school and then ruled out the others due to high tuition cost or disinterest in the campus.

Because of my involvement and officer position in Phi Theta Kappa, I was offered a $10,000 scholarship to the private school, but ultimately chose State University because of all the schools I visited, their Art faculty impressed me the most.  A lot of the private schools had condescending or rude professors at my portfolio reviews (required for Art program applicants).  I’m glad I chose State because I also heard that the private schools I had been considering have non-existent disability services offices.  As someone with test anxiety and general anxiety, that was a major item in the “Cons” column.

So now, at age 24, I am eligible for all the financial aid the Federal government has to offer which allows me to live in campus housing.  Living on campus saves time with transportation; I would’ve had an hour drive or more with rush hour traffic, and my art classes start at 8:30am (did I mention I’m not a morning person?).  It also supplies the best access to campus offerings such as the library and medical services.

This blog will allow me to share my existing knowledge about the inner workings of college administration as well as my discoveries about dorm life.  🙂

My next post will cover my dorm packet, which I am scheduled to receive this week!  🙂

Hello world!

I’ll use this blog as a record of my adventures in the coming year.  Specifically, I’ll be writing about my preparations and experience living in a dorm room for the first time as a borderline non-traditional student.

I’ll be posting a bio post soon about my college experience thus far.  Check out the About page for a quick summation.

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