October 14, 2004

Finally back in school for about three weeks and only one day canceled (Hurricane Jeanne). I guess it sounds awkward that I am relieved that school is back in session, but it‚s due to the fact that we already have one Saturday school day scheduled in December. Though it is only one Saturday, it is still a drag because it is right before finals week. So I guess being back in school without cancellations because of hurricanes relieves all of us here at Embry-Riddle from having to go to school on Saturday.

Classes here at Riddle have finally begun to take shape as well. In the weeks during the hurricanes, we were unable to really settle down into our classes and really find out how it was going to be within them. Luckily, our add/drop dates were extended and we still had a few days when classes resumed to decide whether we wanted to stay in a class or not. Luckily, my schedule was set correctly. Though I am taking six classes this semester, I feel that it has not been difficult to keep up with work. I have all my class work, homework, appointments with advisors, club meetings, and other events scheduled so that I may able to handle all of them accordingly. It has been a lot of reading here in college, so be prepared to read more than you probably ever have in your entire life. (unless your hobby is reading) Besides reading, be prepared to write papers on topics that you will have to create yourself. For some reason, professors like to leave papers as open topic papers, provided they relate to the course. Reading and writing will prove to be the two principal skills that one will need when entering college; Embry-Riddle is no exception. So be prepared and if you can take Advanced Placement English Language and Literature, you will eliminate six of the required nine communication credits.

On the extracurricular side of Embry-Riddle, a club and activities fair was held about two weeks ago in which students here were exposed to the many extracurricular activities that are found on campus. There are a substantial number of clubs and organizations on campus to feed the student‚s interests and needs. Clubs such as the Skydiving club, Surf Club, Modelers club, etc. and organizations such as the Eagles Flight Team, ERAU College Democrats, as well as others were on display. I personally decided to join the Flight Team because I discovered that it was an organization that refined piloting skills, advanced basic piloting concepts, and also flew in national competitions. I was also interested in a few clubs, but will look further into them at a later date.

As for my flying activities so far I finally had the opportunity to fly on Saturday October 9. It was a two-hour flight that took me around north-central Florida up and down the coast. It was a fun and educational flight. I took off from Daytona Beach International Airport, flew to a practice area north of Daytona Beach, flew back in to a nearby airport in Deland, then took off again back to Daytona Beach and landed safely. While in the practice area, since I had one hour previous to this flight, my instructor and I practiced basic maneuvers and had the opportunity to experience what certain pilot inputs do to an airplane, such as pitching up and down, etc. Overall, it was fun, and I know that as I log more flights, my experience here will only improve.

On another note, Daytona Beach has been a great place to come and live. The town is dormant at times and seems to be a ghost town at times, but on the weekends it is lively beachside and mainland. The beach here is nice and warm, unlike west coast beaches, and the beachside resorts, restaurants, entertainment areas, and stores, always provide an alternative to the non-water loving people. From places like Starbucks, and Johnny Rockets, to entertainment like bike-riding and even movie theatres, the beachside has it all. I have had fun the few times I have visited, and look forward to heading back more often.

Not having a car, at times, can be tough. There are days where it is just too hot to try and walk around the area and even around campus, other days are filled with rain, so if you can, bring a car or prepare to be riding with friends or on a bus. Orlando and its resorts are about 45 minutes away with Jacksonville up the coast. So no matter what you like, it is probably somewhere around here. It has been a fun experience so far here at Embry-Riddle.

Until next time, later!

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About Sergio

**Age:** 18 **Hometown:** Pico Rivera, CA **Favorite Movie:** Back to the Future trilogy **Favorite Band:** Beastie Boys **Career Goal:** Be an airplane pilot, fly internationally

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