Thursday, March 26, 2015

I Think I Can Feel Spring In the Air
            With Spring now here I think it has grown to be one of my favorite seasons next to Summer. I feel like Spring is a time of excitement and anticipation for the great days of Summer. Being from Southern California I really don't get to experience the traditional four seasons that the rest of the country experiences. Where I live it hardly rains, doesn't come close to snow and the leaves definitely don't change colors. Here at South I get to experience all that which is really different and quite interesting.
            One of the things that I like the most about the Spring season here at South is just how you can tell how much everybody's mood changes for the better. After months of being cold and having to pick your shoes and clothing wisely due to the weather, we get to kind of be more free. I feel like good weather is good for the soul. I relate it to a clean room. I tend to just be in an all around better mood when my room is clean as crazy as that sounds. With Spring here, I like the mood that it puts everyone in. People tend to have a much better attitude when the weather is nicer outside. I'm really big on my sneakers and I personally enjoy the fact that I can wear whichever ones I want with the weather. Before I would have to have a winter rotation due to the wet and muddy ground. Like I said earlier, to me Spring is like a little warm up to what Summer has in store.

            Around campus I like the steady increase of campus events. The nicer the weather, the more inclined people are to come out. I've actually met plenty of new people that I've never seen before just because the weather and mood around campus is better. Just the overall atmosphere here at South is what I enjoy most about Spring. It also doesn't hurt that the start of this season means only a few more weeks until the school year is over. But I mean I doubt any college students keep track of that.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

            Should college be mandatory? Does obtaining a bachelor's degree hold as much weight as everybody claims? This seems to be one of the most important questions of our young generation. Personally, I feel like depending on your career goals college can be a hit or miss. If you want to be an investment banker or a person in the medical field then yes, I would definitely recommend college. If you want to pursue a career as an entrepreneur or something along those lines of blue collar then I would say focus on that career. College is really what you make it. Regardless of what paper you have in your hands after four years, if your grind doesn't match up then you're in trouble.
            After spending a couple years in college already I would say that just the experience alone is worth the hard work. After school I wish to pursue a career in law enforcement. Right now my only crossroad is whether or not I want to go federal or local. Being from Southern California, the pay is amazing for a police officer. Some of the men I look up to in this field easily make six figures and pretty much control their job description after a few years of moving up. The men I know have all went to college and do very well. Now somebody in my shoes definitely doesn't need a college degree like other fields but it makes you that much more competitive. My main discrepancy with college is the student loans that a majority of the people have to pay back. Regardless of your job after you graduate, you'll spend the next few years in serious debt. To be honest I feel that college is just an easier path to success, not a for sure one. So many successful people have made it without a degree. With that being said, as I've grown older I find it that a main reason why I decided to stay in school is for my future kids. I want to set an example as the first from my family to graduate. I want them to see me do it and then in turn find their own motivation.
            As I mentioned before, college is what you make it. Your trials and experiences will definitely shape you to be a better person. Think about that as a make or break on the pros and cons list if you ever need some extra motivation.  I love my decision to go and then stay in college. I would definitely urge anyone to attend college and take advantage of an education opportunity. At the end of the day I feel like college is like a good workout, you never hear anyone say "Wow I shouldn't of done that."




Monday, March 9, 2015

Versatility Is Key

            In a college setting like this, being able to play numerous roles will definitely be beneficial towards your success. I would say that this goes for both inside and out of the classroom. I know the politically correct thing to say would be that there is no such thing as being too studious. But in reality, there is. Similar to how you can't be a party animal all your life the concept goes both ways. One of the most helpful things that I've found to be true in my college experience so far is to constantly create new experiences for yourself. Branch out and have fun while still remaining focused on school. With that being said I've found it to be true that I genuinely enjoy adrenaline filled experiences.

            One of my favorite things to do while here in college is to take advantage of every moment. Now I know that is broad but it can literally apply to everything. Whether it be a chance to road trip with my friends across the state or just meet new people at the student center I like every moment. As I've gotten older I've found myself doing things simply for the thrill. Now looking outside in that can be good or bad. But when you take it from my approach and being surrounded in a learning environment I still find a way to stay grounded. I've learned from numerous experiences that life is short and should be captured. College is that perfect time where you are a grown up but still not a grown up if that makes sense. Have fun, make memories, take advantage of being away at school, and capitalize on your education opportunity. I might be going against the grain but don't be too consumed with school to where you miss out on your growing years. Be able to play two different roles and enjoy where you're at. Thus far, my favorite thing to do is just branch out and make memories. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Getting Over The College Hurdle

            If someone gave me the task of describing college in one word I would definitely say "experimental". A huge portion of your undergraduate college career is made up of trial and error. Trying to figure out what works and what doesn't work in both social and academic aspects. Fortunately, it doesn't take most people very long to see what works for them and what doesn't. Personally, I find myself more all around successful in college versus high school. I find myself staying more on top of things as well as just genuinely valuing my education a lot more. But of course, it wasn't always as enjoyable as it is now. This is where I'd say the hardest part of college is.

            The huge adjustment process from high school to college was probably the hardest part of college. With that being said I considered myself lucky that adjusting was my hardest part. For others it's usually their workload, being away from home, stress, and of course that infamous freshmen fifteen. Being far from home is actually really fun for me. I enjoy the getaway. But so far my toughest hurdle in college has been just the adjustment. From time management, having to be an actual adult, and staying focused it has definitely been a journey. Successful thus far but nevertheless, it's been a journey. 

            College is such an enjoyable time and I'm blessed to be in the situation that I'm in. From the long nights and productive mornings to the fun memories shared with lifelong friends and everything in between. Don't be scared away or intimidated. Keep your head on straight, stay focused on the long run, and manage your time wisely and you'll be just fine. Get ready for a very memorable 4-5 years. 


Monday, February 16, 2015

Picking Your Major!

            Often times you see incoming college freshmen very indecisive on what they want to major in. There is always that hand full of people that wait until junior year to declare a major and then of course you have those folks that start out wanting to do med school until the first semester grade reports drop. One thing that I would have to say about picking your major is that the choice you make isn't as important as people make it but it's also not as unimportant either. In the end it comes down to majoring in something that you genuinely enjoy. I have that mindset because obtaining a degree that can apply to a job you enjoy doesn't feel like an actual job to me. 

            My major is sociology with a minor in criminal justice. Ever since I was four years old I've wanted to become a police officer and a helper in my community. Several men in my family are involved in some sort of law enforcement career so I've always seen the lifestyle. Living in Southern California all my life I've seen both the good and bad in people and in numerous environments and I know what side of the fence I want to be on. I really want to give back. It wasn't until I reached high school that I realized the salary and benefits from a police department in Southern California. The pay rate is in the top tier nationwide. That mixed with my passion for it really cemented my decision.  One of my cousins is currently SWAT and makes way more than what is needed to live comfortable. With his input as well as other family members they told me the key is to get my degree, my bachelors to be more specific. Your starting rate is higher than those without one but most importantly you can promote faster and choose more of what you want to do instead of being limited. I like figuring out why people do things and what is inside their heads. This is why I chose sociology. I feel like I can carry my major down a detective career path. Also, sociology is so broad that hopefully there will be many career opportunities.

            I'll never forget the advice that my friend's father gave me about 2-3 years ago. He is a sheriff bomb squad/k-9 handler with a degree in criminal justice. He said he wishes he would have switched his major. He told me to pick a major that will get you a number of job but a minor in something that you are passionate about. That really stuck with me and is partly the reason why I'm choosing the route I'm on. I hope everybody keeps that in mind. I mean hey, once we get a job to pay back these student loans we want it to at least be enjoyable!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Choosing The University of South Alabama
               Before coming to South I had no idea that I'd be here.  Most people have a pretty good list of schools that they want to attend. But my story is a little different partly because I am a transfer student. Prior to coming down to Mobile I was playing football in Ohio. After injury and being fed up with the cold weather I decided to go somewhere else to finish my undergrad career and had realized that for some reason I still might be in South Alabama's system. I don't remember how but somewhere down the line I had started an application here at South. Being that this was so peculiar I decided to check out the university as a possible transfer option. I mean the way I see it, I went from California to Ohio so why not to Mobile, Alabama?
            When I was transferring I was set on three different schools. The University of South Alabama, Florida A&M University, and the University of Texas at San Antonio. A lot of things with other schools just didn't work out which really meant that this could be a sign to really consider South. One of my best friends had moved from Mobile to Southern California when we were young and he was saying how I would like it. Being that I've never been to the South before I was very hesitant but things were looking to work out. So I took the risk and decided to transfer here. I honestly can't speak on what stood out or was special because I was never given the opportunity to visit anywhere else before coming here. But what I can say is that since being here I have had some of the best memories in my young life and wouldn't want to be anywhere else. The close family like community and group of people here at South is awesome.
            I feel that choosing where to obtain your education is very important. sometimes the road to your final destination isn't always smooth but it is always worth it. I'm very excited to spend the next two and a half years here at South. I really enjoy this part of the country as well. I know I made the right choice. Go Jags!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

First Day of School Do's and Dont's

            Everybody remembers their first day of high school and how they felt walking into that big scary campus. Some people might have excited and ready to start something new while others were probably scared for their young lives. Personally, I like new things and I like big scary new things. Unfamiliar social settings are always fun for me due to that new challenge and that new rush. Obviously some people feel totally opposite and cringe at the thought of something new. For example, your first day at your new school and this time it's college not little cute high school. Hopefully my tips and tricks will make your new experience fun and not scary. 

            My first day here at South I was a little surprised by the size of the campus. The layout and size is definitely much larger than advertised but don't let that scare you. I was also surprised at how genuinely nice the people here are. Use that to your advantage and make as many friends as possible. The more people you meet, the more connected you are around campus which always helps you in numerous ways. My next piece of advice would be to just get to know the campus. Fortunately I was on campus a few days before class started so I just put on my headphones, grabbed a campus map, and set off to tour the campus. Not only does it make it easier on you come first day of class but it just makes you more comfortable with your school. Next I would say just be yourself when you come to college. You're going to hear about staying on top of your schedule and stuff like that which is important but I feel like people don't tell incoming freshmen to be themselves enough. Know who you are and be that person. Start real friendships on a good foundation because too many times you'll see people self destruct trying too hard to fit in. My last piece of advice would be to get a calendar or some type of planner. Time management is too important to be forgetting about it in college, I had a strong opening GPA but it could have been even higher if you get things done when you have the opportunity.

            To sum all of that up, just relax and enjoy the next 4-5 (hopefully) years of college here at South. Once you get used to the new environment, people, and schedule college will be one of the best experiences of your life. Stay focused and just remember that nothing is ever bad as it seems just like nothing is ever as good as it seems either. Hopefully we'll see each other on campus!