Monday, March 30, 2015

If I had to choose one word to describe USA I would describe it as neighborly.

Neighborly: adj :  of, relating to, or characteristic of congenial neighborsespecially : friendly <a neighborly welcome> 

The University of South Alabama has a very inclusive, familial feel to it. Students are always exchanging friendly hello's in passing on the sidewalks and hallways of campus. Small talk and pleasant conversations are frequent between previously unfamiliar students in places like the jagtrans and elevators. Professors are always doing the best they can to help their students reach their goals and do their best. Student organizations frequently team up for events and fundraisers! South is pleasant place to be and credit for that should be given to the people who call this campus home. They are what makes this a neighborly campus.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring on Campus

The most beautiful time on campus is the Spring! Campus comes alive with all kinds of beautiful flowers and it is breathtaking. My favorite flowers are hydrangea and they bloom all over campus. It is really nice to be driving to class or walking into work on campus and seeing my favorite flowers everywhere. South does a great job of beautifying their campus in the Spring time!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

When I'm not in class...

Whenever I'm not in class and have extra time, I try to volunteer at the Mobile SPCA. I am a volunteer cat socializer! One of the things I miss most about home is my pets. I started to look for something to fill the void of the precious purrs i missed from home. I was on the Mobile SPCA Facebook page when I saw that they needed someone to spend time socializing cats that had been up for adoption for a year or more. For most of those cats, the only interaction with people they were accustomed involved cage cleaning, feeding, and vet visits. So, my job was to try warm the cats up to human interaction in hopes that they would stop hiding in their cages and give them a better chance for a furever home. All I do is play and love on the cats! They don't know that they're helping me as much as I help them.

If you are interested in volunteering they are always in need of help and not far from campus! Here is a link to their Facebook page for more information:
Pictured are some of Mobile SPCA's cats that have been there for over a year.

Monday, February 23, 2015

So, is attendance required for this class?

Being in college is amazing and something I looked forward to all through my high school years. I was envious of college students who had the freedom of being out of the house and getting to decide for themselves whether or not to go to class everyday. Once I had my first taste of this, I immediately realized that skipping classes would be a bad decision. The temptation to skip class is real and it will taunt you. Gone are the days of your school and mom hounding you go to class. Most professors don't even require attendance. It's all up to you to now... You'll have to  dig down deep at 6 a.m. when it's cold and rainy on a Monday and every bone in your body is begging you to stay in bed. 

For me, this was the most difficult part of adjusting to college. I am a night owl and by nature I want to stay up all night, so waking up to go to my classes has always been difficult. Since being in college, I've had to learn that I can't stay up past midnight or I'll be snoozing through my alarms the next day. Setting a time to go to bed has definitely made my morning alarm a little more tolerable. I've also learned that turning on a lamp and standing up right when my alarm goes off is a good way to make sure I don't fall back asleep. I think it's okay to skip a class and take a "personal day" every now and then. After all, we are in college and  this is probably the last time you will have the luxury to do that. Just be smart about taking days off class. Student's that regularly attend class do better than those who do not. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Psychology Majors

This week I want to share with y'all how I chose my major. For as long as I can remember, I have been inquisitive. I am constantly thinking, wondering, and observing people and things around me. I also have a big heart and am always trying to help people whenever I can. I think you just know when you are meant to do something.. and my something is psychology.

Psychology just came naturally for me because of my love for helping and my curious mind. At a young age, I gravitated towards things like participating in science fairs and peer mentor groups. Those are the perfect stepping stones on the journey to becoming a psychology major because psychology involves a lot of listening and research.

Being a psychologist is something I would love to do because no two clients or two days at work would ever be the same. It's a job where things are always changing and learning never stops. It's a job where I can positively impact someone's life and help them get through their struggles. Recently, I decided to work specifically with the military population and their families. I couldn't think of a more rewarding group to work with than those who have put their lives on the line for our freedom.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Why I Chose to be a Jaguar!

I vividly remember the end of my junior year/beginning of senior year when I was checking out colleges. I recall spending lots of time looking up colleges online while I was procrastinating on school work. At the time, I was living in O'Fallon, Illinois but I always dreamed of going out-of-state for college. This caused a lot of conflict in my house. My parents frequently hounded me with questions as to what I would do if (insert horrible scenario here) and I wasn't close to home. So, to keep the peace in my home I applied to four schools. My top four choices consisted of three colleges within a four hour drive from home, even though two of those were out-of-state. Then, there was my top choice at a whopping 13 hours away..South Alabama. 

South was my number one choice for several reasons. First of all, I LOVE Alabama. I have been visiting my Aunt in Birmingham since I was in 3rd grade. I loved the southern hospitality and the lack of cold weather. Over the years I really began to want to attend college somewhere in Alabama. On one of those days where I was procrastinating on doing my school work, I did a Google search for "Universities in Alabama". Immediately, I stumbled across a list that had South Alabama on it and was instantly sold because South Alabama = beaches, right? Not only that, but I could be out-of-state and get the full college experience...BUT my aunt would be about 3 hours away in case one of my parents crazy "what if" situations ever happened. 

Also, I've known for a really long time that I want to be a psychology major. As any good student would do, I went straight for the psychology department's page and began to learn about their program. I remember being really impressed when I saw that South had a doctorate program for psychology. In my mind, I was thinking that because they had a PhD program, that their undergraduate program will probably really prepare me for graduate school. And, maybe I can even get into their PhD program one day. 

Now location, location, location.  South is situated perfectly in Mobile, Alabama, which in my opinion, is the heart of the gulf coast. I was super excited to see that if I drove east for an hour or two I could be in Pensacola, Panama City, or Destin, Florida just to name a few. Also, right in our own backyard is Orange beach and Gulf Shores! Then, to our west is Biloxi and New Orleans! So, if I ever wanted to get out of Mobile, there would definitely be places to go for a fun weekend. Not to mention that Mobile is a pretty cool place, too! Mobile is where Mardi Gras started and is set right on the bay! 

Now to compare my top two choices: South and a comparable sized university in Missouri. The university in Missouri had some things south didn't. I preferred their dorms to South's residence halls. They had way more dorms and I liked that the majority of students lived on campus. However, I didn't like that all rooms had at least two or more beds in it and shared a bathroom with another room that had two or beds in it also. I also didn't like that they had community showers. South, does not have community showers and the normal room has two people and they have their own bathroom. I also felt on the fence about knowing a lot of people who were currently enrolled there or planning to go there. I wanted my own experience and to make new friends and step out of my comfort zone. I also didn't love that I was still really close to home and my mom was suggesting that I could come home every weekend. 

So, my decision was really easy. I followed my heart and chose South for my love of Alabama, the location, and their psychology program. I have no regrets and feel like I am at home here, which is really how I've felt since my first tour of campus! 

Monday, February 2, 2015

Do as I Say Not as I { Did }

Dear Future Jaguars

When your fresh faces come to South, I will have been here for three full years and will be starting my first semester of senior year. I have learned a lot over these past years and want to pass on some wisdom I've gained during my time here. First of all, be kind! It can really benefit you down the road if you are kind to everyone you meet. I treat everyone I meet with the same kindness and respect whether you are a student, professor, or custodian. You never know who really needed a smile that day or when you might need that person's help later. Another, tip would be to get involved.  I was not involved in anything the first semester of freshman was awful. I lived off campus and I was from out-of-state and I knew almost no one here. My experience quickly turned around the following semester when I got this job, joined a sorority, and got involved in Psychology Club. I was so much happier after doing all of that because I was getting out of the apartment and meeting people I probably would not have met otherwise. Being involved has also allowed for me to meet professors and build connections with them that will really be beneficial to my career down the road. Keep your grades up! Grades are so important and will define you during and after college. During college, your grades will determine when you get to pick your classes and if you can get an on campus job. After college, it will determine if you will get into a graduate program or picked for an internship. While you may be a good person your grades starting now will make up at least 80% of who you are. Make your GPA something you are willing to brag about! 

Above all else, enjoy your time here at South! My experience here has been nothing but wonderful. I wish the same for you! 

Your Jag Guide