Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Finals Are Here!

Finals are here which means the end of the semester has come! Hmm there are so many things that come to mind when I think of finals, so many different emotions.

The first thing that comes to mind is STUDY STUDY STUDY! It is obvious why this would be the first thing that comes to mind. Finals are your last chance to to go big or go home when it comes to grades. Luckily, I am not scramming to bring a grade up this  semester, but I have been there before. This finals week, I am simply just trying to maintain the grade I already have in hopes of ending the semester with all As. I will be graduating in December and my course load for the fall is pretty small so this was ultimately my last semester to experience the stress that comes along with finals week.

Finals week can be exhausting because not only do you have finals but the week before (this week) is usually the busiest week of the semester. Final projects are due, term papers, banquets, award ceremonies, final student organization meetings, etc. Everyone and everything seems to want to schedule all of their events on the same week. This makes me look forward to the end that is so very near.



Besides the exhaustion another thing that comes to mind when I hear finals, on a brighter note is SUMMER SUMMER SUMMER ! In the midst of all the turmoil created by finals week, there is one thing to keep you motivated and that's SUMMERTIME. Summer time means that all of your friends that have gone off to college will all be reuniting to enjoy summer at home. This is a time to soak up the sun and enjoy the company of friends who you've missed all year.

I have a slightly different reason to be excited about this summer, and that is because summer this year for me means SUMMER IN LONDON! Yes I said London, I have been given the opportunity to study abroad this summer in London with fellow USA students for a month. This will be the first time travelling outside the country and words can not describe how excited I am. Nervous, yes, but much more excited.



So I guess you can say when I hear the word finals the excitement for summer trumps the dreading of studying and exhaustion. I can not wait to see what this summer has to offer!

Go Jags!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Rain Rain Go Away!

If you haven't already heard, it rains A LOT in Mobile. Do not get me wrong, Mobile has some awesome weather especially during the Spring and Summer time giving that we're on the coast. However, when it rains, it RAINS. When it decides to rain in Mobile it does not sprinkle, drizzle, or whatever you want to call it, it STORMS.  With that being said, when you move to Mobile, I am sure you  will need to add  pair of rain boots, umbrella, and rain jacket to your wardrobe.

Being a resident of Mobile for almost 21 years now,  I have developed my own routine on what I do on rainy days here. If it is Storming you can always bet that I will not be leaving the house that day. Partially, because I suck at driving in the rain, but also because rainy weather=Netflix weather.

If I have class, I have to get over myself and go to class. However, if I don't Netflix it is. I am a Netflix binge watcher rain or shine, however, the rain just makes my habit even worse.

You can catch me watching one of my favorite series, Gossip Girl, 90210, Orange is the New Black and the list goes on. When it comes to food, I almost always will order delivery, probably Chinese or Pizza. However, I have been rejected delivery on several occasions because the weather was too bad, so if that is the case its good to always have snacks on hand at home. Otherwise, I would starve, because like I said I will NOT leave the house unless I necessarily have to.

Rainy days are meant for relaxation and to take a break from reality and indulge in series that can take your mind off everything else.


Monday, April 20, 2015

GOALS

As we grow up we will have set a number of goals for ourselves. Some may be short term others may be long term. From a college student's perspective, your career goals are what matters the most during your years in college. It is important to choose a University that will do nothing less than prepare you and help you reach your career goals. USA has definitely done that for me.

My career goals upon attending USA was simply to get a degree in Criminal Justice and become a criminal justice professional. That basically means I really had no clue what specific job title I wanted to pursue. The first way USA helped me was by providing me with different courses that allowed me to pinpoint my interest, to narrow down what  specific career I wanted to pursue.

My minor is sociology because I really enjoy helping others that experience social hardships that they have no control over. I particularly was interested in helping victims of crimes. USA allowed me to connect with the local Rape Crisis Center, that provided me with the opportunity to volunteer and advocate such victims. This really inspired me, and I knew my career goals would be to have a job that was dedicated with helping those that come in contact with the Criminal Justice system.

The victims are one sector of individuals that come in contact with the CJ system but another sector that interest me was the criminals. Not only has my courses inspired me to want to assist victims but I was also interested in working first hand with those that commit such crimes. I know that seems weird, but hey its what suits me. USA has helped me set my career goal of becoming a Probation Officer. To help and find ways to integrate and change the circumstances in the lives of the offenders.I am currently pursuing an internship opportunity at the Federal Probation Office, and USA has done nothing less to prepare me as well as give me the connections to make this internship possible.

USA provides its students with the resources and connections need to reach their goals. They challenge them to discover their passion and to pursue it.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Do Over Please?

Growing up leaves room for mistakes and that is essentially what you are doing once you transition from high school to college. For the first time in your life (for most) you are leaving the bird's nest that we so often like to call home. Whether you are local or not you are getting the freedom that we have all been waiting for. With this freedom comes responsibilities. You have to determine what your dinner will consist of, when is the right time to do laundry, registering for classes, etc. Unfortunately, we are not always going to make the right choices, and that is perfectly fine. In my opinion, you can not grow as a person if you never make mistakes.

With that being said, I am in my final days of my third year at USA. Oh my how time flies by. Looking back over my year here there are a couple of things I would do differently. I won't tell you all of them because then I won't leave room for you to make mistakes of your own. However, if I had to choose one thing that I would most definitely do-over it would have to be to enjoy the social life USA has to offer.

If you ask anyone that knows me they will tell you that I can be a workaholic sometimes. Whether its with school work or actual work. My schedule during the week usually allows for work, school, and sleep. I have time after work and even on weekends to engage in social activities, previous years I chose not to simply because in my mind all I wanted was to sleep. When I am not sleeping, my free time tend to result in me laying around watching Netflix all day. Earth to Carla, Netflix will always be there get out and have fun! I have participated in so many social activities on campus this year. Joined several organizations, and have definitely broadened my horizon at USA.

It is important that you have a balance between Work and Play. Never work too much and definitely never play too much, they should both meet each other in the middle. In some cases, work can prove more important than play, but you get my point. Committing yourself to work all the time could have negative effects even if you think it would benefit you in the long run. Don't get me wrong school work should always come first, I mean you are paying thousands of dollars, but don't let it weigh you down. If this means you have to spread your classes out more when you register or take less hours at work. Do It! Being bogged down can increase unnecessary stress. Having that balance between work and play allows you to relieve the stress or just allow you to get away from all the duties your work or school may bring. Set yourself free sometimes, allow your mind to rest. I had the opportunity to do this, this semester but instead I chose to be a hermit crab and not do it.

Even though I take pride in the work that I do at USA (I mean without it you guys wouldn't be able to read this blog right now), and even though I am extremely proud of my 4.0 GPA, I do not have much to show for my social life. I have the work aspect down pack and with 3 years of experience I know the key to maintaining what I have accomplished. Now its time to balance that out and work on my social life. College is about creating memories, and starting next year I intend to create more than I did this semester. Engaging yourself in social life doesn't always mean partying, it could simply mean surrounding yourself with others sharing the joy of laughter and friendship. Balance is the key.






Tuesday, April 7, 2015

One Word: Rewarding

If I had to choose one word to describe being a student at USA it would have to be REWARDING.

My experience as a USA Jaguar has definitely been a rewarding one. It has been rewarding in so many aspects of my life.

Academic; My educational experience has been a rewarding one. As a student I pushed myself to do great in all of my classes, whether it be for my major or a general education course. The professors are all different in their own way. I have been able to learn from professors that are experts in the field that I am pursuing. I have never at any moment felt that my education here at USA has been deprived. I feel that upon completing my degree I will be well-prepared to pursue my career of choice. What makes my education a rewarding experience is the 4.0 GPA I have been able to maintain since I have been here. I have worked hard and have had many restless nights, however, my GPA always reminds me and helps me reflect to see that all the hard work pays off.


My Job: My on-campus job has allowed me to immerse myself in so many different ways. Working for the New Student Recruitment office has given me the opportunity to cross paths and network with so many great people. Our office is truly one big family. I would not have met some of the coolest people if I have not been hired for this position back in 2012. On top of that, my job allows me to interact with prospective students that are preparing to embark on the same journey I began back in 20132. I remember how excited I was, and the many countdowns, and planning I did as a high school senior. Being able to assist those and share experiences to help ensure their transition is a smooth one, gives me so happy. Not only am I helping them, but they are also helping me allowing me to develop social and interaction skills I never knew I had.

Campus Life: I am apart of many student organizations here on campus, that have changed my life for the better. First being the first organization I joined which was the Gathering Campus Ministry. This organization and coming in contact with this group of people will forever have a mark on my life. It has allowed my faith and spiritual life to grow tremendously. All of the other organizations, Women of Excellence, First Generation College Students, House of Jags, Rape Crisis and more! Once thing about being apart of all of these organizations is that you are always surrounded by individuals that have the same interest and goals as yourself. This could be very uplifting and inspirational during your time in College. I have definitely gained lifelong friendships in the midst of it all.

I am just so proud that I chose USA as my college choice. Looking back over the years I have had some of the best experiences and I am sure that I could not have possibly had them if I had chose any where else. This experience as a USA Jaguar has definitely been a rewarding one.






Thursday, March 26, 2015

Spring Time!

The first official day of Spring was March 20th! There are so many things to love about Spring here at USA and in Mobile.

First BEST thing about Spring is my birthday which is on March 22nd. :)

There are so many things to do in the spring here in Mobile and at South.

One of my favorites is  the taking a trip to the beach because the weather is finally about to warm up. The beach is just about 45 min to an hour away from USA. So many of my spring weekends are spent there.

Another favorite is the Color Me Rad 5K event that is held in the spring. What better vibrant, colorful event can do a better job of welcoming Spring to Mobile. This is always an event to look forward.

Bellingrath Gardens which is very close to Mobile also hosts a huge Easter Egg hunt event that is great to attend to celebrate Spring and the holiday.

Spring is my favorite season for so many reasons, especially since it is my season of birth. I turned 21 this year and cant wait to see what this year's Spring at USA in Mobile has to offer!


Me on my 21st Birthday!


Thursday, March 12, 2015

My Favorite Thing To Do Outside of Class!

Being from Mobile, AL, and have lived here the majority of my life, I have a list of things that I enjoy doing outside of class.

However, if I had to choose my most favorite thing to do outside of class it would have to be going downtown Mobile. Some people only experience the night life of downtown Mobile, but I have grown to appreciate it during the day as well. There is always something going on downtown. Some of our most popular events are the Art Walk, Chili Cookoff, Crawfish Broil, the infamous MARDI GRAS,  museums and more. On a regular day there are great restaurants to visit such as Spot of Tea as well as several boutiques to shop.  This weekend they are having a Tour of Mobile showcasing some of Mobile's finest historical homes.

Downtown Mobile has beautiful landmarks, houses, and scenery. To just take a stroll downtown is a day well spent. Between school. work, and campus events, I do not experience much free time. However, when I do going downtown Mobile, is definitely one of the many things I enjoy doing.