Maddie

About Maddie

Sophomore

Aviation Business Administration

Hometown: Castle Rock, Colorado

Campus Involvement: O-Team, Resident Advisor, Honors Program, Women in Aviation, Womens Ambassador, Greek Life, Student Assistant, SGA Student Court

Why I chose Embry-Riddle: I chose Embry-Riddle because it felt like home. I had never, and still to this day have never, experienced a university so unique and truly special. There is no other place like our school - where you can fly up to Georgia for BBQ after class!

Summer Update #2

Hi everyone!

This first week of my internship at United was really crazy! I got to work in service recovery – which is tracking passengers who will most likely miss their flight and re-booking them on a new one. They are then greeted at the gate with tickets for their new flights. How awesome is that?! I also got to work in the premier lobby helping passengers check-in and tag their luggage. Another day we worked the inaugural SFO-Zurich flight! It was super fun and everyone was very excited for their complimentary Swiss chocolate! Friday I worked at the gates helping people board their flight. So many people miss their flights, don’t want to check their carry-ons, want to get an upgrade, etc. I feel I get to see the worst in people with this internship since traveling makes people stressed. However, I’m really liking it! Tomorrow I meet my mentors for the first time! We truly are a family. Birthdays are celebrated with good cake and lots of laughs!

Living alone is nice. I cook a lot! My RA dorm on campus doesn’t have a kitchen so I’m loving the ability to cook. I also bring my lunch to work, so I make it the night before. Tonight I made pasta and garlic Parmesan roasted potatoes for tomorrow’s lunch. I really enjoy going to bed at 9 pm and waking up early. I feel so productive being out the door at 6 am. I do miss home a lot though, so I already have my flight booked to Denver on July 31st!

As for summer classes, I am doing a lot better than before! I finally got into the swing of things. Let me tell you, I really appreciate Canvas after having to use a different platform for these classes. I feel summer classes are a lot quicker paced (well they are since they finish quicker than normal courses in the fall/spring) and therefore I feel every day I am doing another assignment. I am now working ahead on the weekends because honestly, the last thing I want to do after a long day is homework and tests. I know I’ve grown as a person because I can admit I think I took a bit too much on with summer classes, living alone in a big city for the first time, and a 10-hour/day internship. I’ll stop complaining now because it does no good at this point. I will just be SUPER grateful at the end of this summer. Never have I ever wanted summer to end, haha!

I hope you all are excited for school to start in just two months! Soon you will be finding out who your roommate is, buying dorm necessities, and getting ready to move! Please make sure to check your ERAU email often. Important things need to be done like accepting awards (scholarships)/making sure they came through to Embry-Riddle, having all placement exams complete, current shots mandatory to start, insurance figured out, and more! Be diligent and don’t be afraid to ask for help by calling the correct department!

Some more tips as summer is in full swing:

Spend time with your family – while your time with your friends is also precious, I promise you will be missing your family a lot at school!

Eat at home – on the same note, eat home cooked meals while you can!

Read the ERAU Housing’s packing list – I made a post with a very thorough packing list for school, but be sure to reference Housing’s list for what is allowed. As an RA, we do inspections to make sure people don’t bring thinks like cook-tops or candles. If they are found, the student must get rid of it within 24 hours. Save yourself the trouble.

Start investing in Florida products and testing them out – Find a good sunscreen, foundation, bug spray, hairspray, etc. I recommend Supergoop sunscreen products, Estee Lauder Double-Wear Foundation, and Avon’s Skin So Soft for bug spray! I may be listing more body/beauty products for Florida, so stay tuned!

Save money – I didn’t work my first semester (most students don’t). Thankfully, I could still go out to the movies or to eat because I worked a summer job before college and saved up! Try to do the same – 10/10 would recommend!

Print pictures – you will want photos in your room to liven it up and remember your loved ones! I got mine from Super Snaps and had a great experience!

Have fun out there! – Maddie

 

Summer Update #1

Summer Update #1

Well, summer is in full swing and I feel it’s already flying by! Here are some pictures from my Las Vegas rod trip and second Disney trip! My internship AND summer classes started last week so it’s been very busy around here.

At Dutch Bros Coffee in Las Vegas

Guardians of the Galaxy ride at Disneyland (our favorite ride – we rode it about 10 times)

At the pool in Vegas! (Fun fact: unless you are 21, you cannot check-in to a hotel with a casino attached. It made for a difficult time finding a hotel with no casino, on the Strip, but with a nice pool)

We were stuck in Memorial Day traffic

I moved into my apartment early and thankfully that was pretty stress-free! I am renting with Zeus, which is a business that rents out fully furnished short-term housing. I liked the ease of just walking in, but city life is a little difficult to adjust to. It’ll take awhile to get used to for sure!

My internship is great! Our normal work day is 7:30 am to 4 pm. I catch the BART (subway) at 6 am though since where I clock in is way back in the terminals. The BART goes straight to the airport, so that’s super nice. I walk about 15 minutes to the BART then ride it for 30 minutes to get dropped off at the gates. My day-to-day schedule consists of meeting at 7:30 am to get my schedule for the day. Each day it’s different! I requested to mainly work in the international terminal and in premium areas (think first class check-in and clubs)! These are two areas I am most interested in for a career so they will let me spend most of my days here. However, I will also get to explore areas such as check-in, flight operations, in-flight services, cargo, rescheduling, customer service, and tower! Every Wednesday we meet with our mentors and on Fridays we go volunteer! We do a summer book club here reading Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek. We will also complete a final project – which is evaluating United Airlines’ artificial intelligence (like their app).

So far, all the other interns are very nice and we all get along! Most are from the Bay Area. I think I’m the only one who moved for this. It’s crazy to be alone… in a big city… cooking my own meals and packing lunches. When did I grow up so much? Even commuting nearly 2 hours each day is crazy since I’m used to my 10-minute walk to classes. Waking up at 5 am is not my favorite.

Chris is leaving for Mississippi this week to start his training in cyber systems programming! We’re super excited, but since we spent all of May together, saying goodbye was extra hard. I’ll tell you, the hardest part of growing up for me has been learning to be ok with moving on from some things. I like comfort but that’s not how you grow as a person. For instance, I wish I could be at home working my high school job, cooking dinner with my mom, and spending weekends running around town with Chris, but… These classes and this internship are so beyond helpful for my future. Chris and I always say it’s 4 years of stomaching some not-so-ideal things in return for a great rest of our lives.

So here I am writing on a subway in a huge city on the way to my dream internship, which still scares me at times, but that’s life. Some days I’m beyond excited but others I feel too young to be doing all these big things. And as for summer classes, just be sure you don’t forget their start date… Oops!

On a totally random note: Be sure to start buying some dorm stuff now (like bedding). It’ll help you feel less stressed, find the best deals, and hopefully get excited!

Hope you’re all having fun!

Maddie

Summer!

Hello everyone!

It’s been about two weeks since finals, can you believe that?! I’m happy to report I finished with all A’s and I was never too stressed while studying! I tried mixing it up this finals season and studied in groups (I usually prefer to study alone) and it actually helped me stay laser focused. I guess the moral of the story here is try new things!

On a side note, I’ve been obsessed with using GrubHub. It’s a food delivery service where you order via an app and someone delivers it to you! This was AMAZING during finals when I didn’t want to drive anywhere and interrupt studying. Tropical Smoothie and Buffalo Wild Wings were on routine repeat for me! The trick is to get your friends to order with you and the delivery fee and tip can be split so it’s not as much. You can easily order to the dorms, so those of you planning on not having a car next semester, do not fret! This is for you!

Anyways, back to summer! After finals finished (I had the last final at 9 pm on Wednesday), I went and packed up my dorm. After I did my RA walkthrough of all the resident’s rooms, I went to the airport. This is a crazy story – I had my friend take me to the wrong airport and then almost missed my flight. How does that even happen?! The flight was supposed to be delayed but then got changed to no delay and I ended up having to throw away all my liquids in order to carry on my bag. Then I had to beg to be allowed to not double pay for my bag since I had originally paid for it to be checked. Long story short, I made the flight (barely) and didn’t have to pay for my bag twice.

I then landed in Las Vegas and caught a flight to Oakland. Once I landed in Oakland I went to my hotel and woke up early to catch the Bart to San Francisco Airport. Here I finished my badging process by taking a safety class. This was my third weekend back-to-back in San Francisco. Crazy right? That’s a lot of 6-hour flights coast to coast. After getting my badge I rented a car. How am I old enough to rent a car?! Well, the answer is I paid a premium for the 20-year-old insurance. I dropped off my badge and drove down to Monterey to visit Chris, which was a 3-hour drive with traffic. I don’t consider myself the best driver so I was very scared to drive in crazy California traffic with unfamiliar roads. All was fine though! I picked him up and we got dinner then continued to drive to LA. We then spent Saturday at Disneyland and Sunday in Los Angeles! Now I am currently hanging out in Monterey spending time with Chris. He works during the day so I usually try out coffee shops and find cute stores to kill time! Last weekend we went to the Taylor Swift concert in Santa Clara, Apple Park in Cupertino, and strawberry picking in Watsonville. Tomorrow we are heading to Las Vegas!

Disneyland!

Apple Park with iPads as menus

Apple Park!

Taylor Swift’s Reputation Tour – Santa Clara

Strawberry Picking

But… The best news is my internship starts in two weeks! I am so excited to live in a big city and work with my dream airline! Finding an apartment has been stressful since there are a lot of scams and I need a short-term, furnished apartment. I’ll keep you updated! This is my first full-time internship! I like that it is a rotational one where I will be able to work in multiple areas. I think this will make time fly. Also, SFO is BEAUTIFUL! What an amazing airport!

I will be doing my internship for credit as well as some online summer classes. If any of you are curious about the process of registering for either, let me know! I’d be happy to share my experience with setting it up and why I choose to do both!

Enjoy the beginning of summer! – Maddie

The Ultimate Packing List for Each Dorm (with pictures)

All Dorms: All come with a mini fridge, vanity, microwave, desk, and dresser (and a bed too obviously). The bathrooms come with a shower curtain too. You can order items like bedding through housing or order to-store at Bed Bath and Beyond. There is a Target down the street, across from the Speedway for last minute needs, but a “secret” Super Target is 15 minutes south in Port Orange. We also have a Hobby Lobby, World Market, Pier One Imports, and Michaels if you like decorating! There is a Kohls and Sam’s Club not too far for mattress toppers and bulk-snacks. You can mail stuff to the university after you get your mailbox, but you won’t have your mailbox number until after move in. To send things before you are assigned a mailbox, you can address packages with your name, New Student Embry-Riddle, 600 South Clyde Morris Blvd., Daytona Beach FL 32114. Then just pick it up at the mail room when you arrive.

I have a printer but I do not need one. You can print from the 24-hour lab in the College of Business. As for packing clothes, bring lots of t-shirts with jeans/shorts. Also, bring some light sweaters/rain jackets for classrooms and “winter”. I normally wear Keds, flats, or sandals to get across campus. Make sure to bring nice clothes (business casual and at least one business professional outfit) no matter your major. We have our career fair and interviewers coming to campus constantly. Sororities and fraternities also require you to dress nicely once a week as do some on-campus jobs.

For laundry, Adams, Woods, and Doolittle have laundry rooms downstairs. New Hall has two laundry rooms per floor (one per wing). All laundry facilities have an associated app to see which are available. While they are free, you must bring your own detergent.

  • Tubs (for summer storage too)
  • Command Strips (tons, but the velcro ones work best)
  • Hangers
  • Desk Lamp
  • Mattress Topper
  • Bed Covers (Twin XL) – Pottery Barn, Target, and Macy’s has cute ones!
  • Pillows
  • Full-length mirror
  • Trashcan
  • Bathroom Mat
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels
  • Food Organizers
  • Cleaning Wipes
  • Water Filter
  • School Supplies
  • Desk Organizer
  • Air Freshener
  • Laundry Basket
  • TV (but most students use a laptop – I do!)
  • Pictures!!!

New Hall: New Hall has a tiny kitchen area, so I recommend not bringing a lot of kitchen gadgets. You also don’t have a designated kitchen sink, so cleaning dishes and such gets a little challenging. You will have bathroom cubbies in the shower room and individual closets in your room. Most students raise their beds and put the desk under their bed. Some prefer to bunk their bed with their roommate and put the desks on the other side. My friend was kind enough to let us see her room!

Adams/Woods: Adams/Woods bathrooms are shared with 3 other people, so I recommend a caddy to keep the shower uncluttered. Since the floor is wood, I also recommend a rug. We bought curtains and lots of bins for food and bathroom storage. The photos below are from my freshman dorm!

Doolittle: I have not lived in Doolittle, but I would recommend a bathroom caddy/other bathroom organizers since you will be sharing a bathroom with 7 other people. You will have a large desk as well, so desk organizers could be beneficial if you like to be orderly. A closet is shared too, so consider a closet divider since that could be helpful if you like to keep your belongings separate. Like Adams/Woods, I want to recommend a rug to cover the wood floor! These photos are from a friend!

Personal tip: I like plants in my room since they brighten the space and make it feel more homey!

Move-in gets crazy so bring water! Be patient! It’s overwhelming but everyone does it and your RA should be helpful. Orientation is meant to be fun, so don’t stress! You will have huge moving bins to help! Assignments come out this summer so get excited!

Happy almost summer! – Maddie!

It’s Interview Season!

Hi everyone!

I hope anyone who came to Preview Day had a great time! This time of year on campus is crazy! We all love seeing the new faces around but we also are working hard preparing for finals and finishing projects. And on top of all that, lots of students are preparing for interviews for internships or jobs! I was surprised by how many students asked about internship opportunities at Preview Day – that’s so great you guys are thinking ahead!

Some people get internships as a freshman but I waited until my sophomore year. This means these are my first real interviews. I have interviewed with United, SFO, DIA, and Allegiant. These have been phone, video-recording, Skype, and in-person interviews. I applied for about 10 internships and have gotten 8 interviews. So far I have received multiple offers and I am super excited! Now the stressful part is deciding which!

Skype and video-recording interviews are awkward and kind of frustrating with the lagging. Phone interviews are nice because you can have notes in front of you. In-person interviews are my favorite because you are able to show your personality better in my opinion!

Just yesterday I was flown to Chicago for an interview with United Airlines. This was an amazing experience. I felt very prepared because I have utilized Career Services and their help was extremely useful. I wasn’t even nervous! The interviewers were very nice and the experiences I’ve had at Embry-Riddle in classes and in organizations were very applicable to their questions. Many of my interviewers were even Riddle grads!

Taking the train in Chicago to my interview.

I left to Chicago very early then took the L Train into the city from the airport. I then went and did my interview, got coffee, and headed back to the airport. It was a wild day but I had a great time getting a little lost in the city!

I left Florida in 80 degree weather only to land in snowy Chicago!

Internships are great experience builders and can take place during the summer, spring, and fall semesters. I encourage you to talk to Career Services your first semester and begin planning for internships as soon as possible! Even just the interview process itself is great experience!

-Maddie

Long Distance Love

I hope everyone is doing well! We just finished Spring Break and it’s now the time of year that feels so busy as we all wrap up projects and prepare for finals! Last time I wrote about Preview Day (April 7th) and I hope you can all attend! If you have questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments section of that post! If/when you visit, be sure to check out and use #Iamaneagle on social media! I plan to write up the ULTIMATE packing list that I wish I had had, but for now, I thought it would be beneficial to ease the minds of many incoming freshmen.

As a Women’s Ambassador, my third or fourth conversation with my girls is usually asking about relationships. It’s not uncommon for people who have been dating throughout high school to be a little panicked at this point in senior year.

To begin, I’m proud of anyone who is planning on trying out long distance. It’s easy to quit the relationship, or worse, give up your dream to go to the same college as your “bae”. Our school is so specialized that you most likely are coming because your passion is in aviation or aerospace! While these final months spent together may make you dread being apart (if they don’t I would be worried, haha!), know it is all ok!

 

Ok, here is the background on my long distance relationship and then we will get on with the advice!

Chris and I have been together since the middle of senior year. We went to different schools but worked together at a restaurant. Overall, we didn’t have the opportunity to spend much time together throughout the week, but we always made time on Friday nights or the weekend after work. Chris stayed in Colorado while I moved to Florida for school. On breaks, I would go home and spend lots of time with him and my family. Sometimes Chris would be gone on breaks and that would be hard. This year, Chris is in California, so I don’t even get to see him when I go home. That definitely makes things more challenging.

Chris is in the military so we have an additional challenge. Last fall we went months without any contact except letters. It was rough but very rewarding when I finally got to see him at his graduation. I was so proud! We still struggle due to the time difference between us and with both of us being busy!

 

My best advice:

Do it – As I already mentioned, a lot of people never even try. They break up before or one sacrifices their education/top university choice for the other. Try it! Do what is best for you and I promise, if it is meant to be, you will find a way to make it work!

Write letters – I learned that while Chris was in Basic Training, letters made our love story very fun! It’s better than texting all day and being distracted from life in front of you. Even though we can text occasionally throughout the day, we still send letters!

Use the mail – Along with letters, use things like Etsy, BirchBox, flower delivery services, or other mailing options to send surprises to each other. Chris is great at this and little does he know, he currently has a surprise coming to him now! Everyone loves a little surprise and getting a package from the mail center makes my day! This sounds expensive but it’s not! Think about if you did a date night, it would be about $40. Mailing Chris a box of his favorite snacks costs $20!

Make time – This is obvious but it’s harder than people think. He is working and I have class, work, and activities. We promise each other the weekend afternoons! He normally calls me at night and we do homework together after sharing our days. We use to text everything but now we have cut back so we have things to share at night. This gives us something to look forward to! I have learned to communicate very clearly my feelings since we don’t have the luxury of non-verbal cues. I have to remind myself he can’t see that I’m tired, so I need to say I am. This way he knows I may be a bit crankier.

Facetime is life – It is. While you may be sad seeing couples together, you just have to accept this is as good as it gets for now. We Facetime often and sync movies (there are websites for this) or play 21 questions! It sounds silly but there are games to play online if you Google them!

Plan trips – While it may be more expensive, think of all the money you’re saving on eating out while apart! I visited Chris last month (you can see my other post for more details) and he came last semester. That short time together makes it all worth it! We think of it as getting to travel more than we would if we were together. When he comes to visit, it’s like a mini vacation!

Be patient – Patience is the backbone of long distance relationships. You have to be ok with boring Facetime calls, awkward silences, not knowing any of the same people, not being able to share stories about classes like in high school, and not experiencing new things together. Yes it makes me sad and we fought a lot to get to the point we are at now, but you really learn and grow as a person throughout it. I have learned to communicate more, be off my phone, and listen better.

At the end of the day, I just recommend giving it a shot. Do NOT let your relationship jeopardize your future. Unfortunately, a lot of my friends broke up in college, even people who went to the same school. There is no advice that will save your relationship, that’s up to you! I just know that while we have weeks we fight every day, we have months of constant happiness even while apart. Yes, it sucks I am alone, but because of this, I am way more involved in my classes and clubs! Honestly, if Chris were here, I would always be distracted! If your partner is coming to the same school as you, that’s great! Don’t lose yourself or miss out on opportunities though!

Have a great week! – Maddie Dietrich

 

Throwing it back…

Today I am home in Castle Rock, Colorado for spring break. While I’m cruising through these old, familiar streets, I have been quite nostalgic of the times leading up to college. I remember being so excited after being accepted since Embry-Riddle was my first pick. I know many of you are going through similar experiences now, so I thought I would tell you a little bit about the last bit of time before college.

I have said this before, but if you are torn on which college to choose, go visit! Each college has its own personality and you’ll get a feeling once you’re standing there on whether or not you can see yourself there. I understand traveling can be expensive so take the online virtual tours and read blogs like these to understand student life! If you’ve visited both schools and are still unsure, do more research!

This time of year for seniors is pretty calm. Most know where they will be attending or at the very least, where they are accepted. The pressure of applications is off and all that is left to worry about is graduation and possibly some AP exams. The good news is… it only gets better from here!

Most colleges have an orientation or preview day. We have both here at Riddle! Preview Day is April 7th so be sure to RSVP for that! It is only for accepted students. Orientation is in fall before classes begin. At our Preview Day, you can sit in on classes, make tuition and housing deposits, take tours of the campus and dorms, get your eagle ID, and register for classes. You can also talk to financial aid if you have any questions or problems! I know many people who made friends and even found roommates during this day! Many campus organizations will be out and talking about their clubs so accepted students can get to know more about them. Girls can meet with their woman ambassador too – I know I am meeting with some of mine! I’m adding some very cheesy photos from my Preview Day in 2016 (I feel old) *cringe*!

Got my eagle ID!

Here I am getting help registering for classes. They provide a sheet of recommendations.

I met up with a girl from my town who was a senior at Riddle. Our mom’s worked together.

Meeting with my woman ambassador, Jackie! We still talk even though she has graduated.

Taking a housing tour and making friends! I still say hi to these guys when I see them on campus!

In the days leading up to graduation, cherish the moments. Don’t get too caught up in all the unimportant details like what shoes to wear or planning the perfect party. Enjoy your family who came to celebrate with you, thank your teachers for their support, and spend time with your friends before everyone goes to either side of the country! Get pictures before the graduation so you have better chances of getting non-crowded, and your first pick of backgrounds.

After graduation, enjoy your summer because the next ones will be filled with internships, flights, or summer classes. I worked the whole summer before coming to college and I am thankful I did. When the family plans a vacation, join them! (note: I have an older sister who is always super busy during the summer, so my parents learned from her that we need vacations now)!

You will also begin packing and preparing for school now! Soon I will be posting a thorough packing list. Until then, start getting necessities like bedding (for an XL twin bed) and other obvious items. (Note: I recommend Target, Macy’s, or PB Teen for bedding!)

One more thing about Preview Day, you get to tour Daytona when you have free time. While there is a lot to do, there is no strict schedule. My mom and I went to the flea market, beach, and Disney!

At Daytona Beach!

At the flea market!

Disney World with my mom!

Your Embry-Riddle gear gets you into cockpits! I was welcomed up on my flight back home!

Please leave a comment if you have any questions! I’d be happy to help!

– Maddie Dietrich

President’s Day Weekend!

I hope everyone enjoyed their long weekend – I sure did!

For my President’s Day weekend, I went to San Francisco! I left on Thursday evening after class (I had to miss my one Friday class but my professor was very flexible) and returned Tuesday morning. During my trip I stayed at a friend’s house. That’s one awesome thing about college – you meet people from all over and build cool connections, like being able to stay at their place!

The reason I went to San Francisco is because my boyfriend, Chris, is in the Air Force and  goes to school in Monterey, California. Note: for those who are curious about long distance relationships, trust me when I say they are completely possible (I’ve been doing it for two years)! We loved the city so much!

Here is what we did –

Arrival at night: Chris came to the airport to come get me. He took a shuttle from the DLI (Defense Language Institute) to SFO and then we Ubered to In-N-Out!

Day 1: On our first day we went to Pier 39 and to the famous Boudin’s bread. We then took the ferry to Alcatraz and spent Chinese New Year in China Town! People were launching fireworks in the streets to celebrate.

Day 2: We woke up, got breakfast – which consisted of us putting our name on a list at one restaurant, then going to get a smoothie, avocado toast, and coffee all while waiting. You get a blanket when you eat some places too, which was a first for me! We then took a scenic route and walked to the Mission to get tacos and also saw Lombard Street (a super curvy road).

 

Day 3: I went to Union Square and the Westfield Mall. Chris and I love to eat. We travel by eating our way around the city! Every morning we try a new restaurant and coffee shop! We also had Pressed Juice and it was so good! Then I tried a charcoal latte, iced foam cappuccino, and a “make your own” tea blend machine! I also had super great toast with mascarpone and fruit – you’ve got to try it! We try to eat local and try recommendations from the people we meet or use Yelp. To get around, we use Uber Pool. This is a fun way to meet interesting people and it’s very inexpensive as long as you’re not in a hurry! It took about 20 minutes to get across the city but only cost about $5!

 

Day 4: Chris and I found a very cool breakfast sandwich place, got butter coffee (it’s actually really good), and then biked across the Golden Gate Bridge! On the other side of the bridge, we visited the tiny town of Sausalito. We toured the cute town and had really good Mexican food! Then we had to say goodbye and it was sad, but these trips are definitely worth it!

This weekend I went to Savannah, Georgia with Women in Aviation to tour Gulfstream! It was all paid for by the club and orchestrated by the school. Alumni gave the tours and bought our lunch! These opportunities are so amazing and unique to our university!

I encourage you to take any chance in college to take a break and explore! The nature of Riddle is that everyone is either at the beach, space station, or traveling on the weekends! Before you say college is too serious for trips, the week before my trip to San Francisco I had five tests, two quizzes, a paper, and a presentation. I was able to get A’s in all, so carpe diem!

Things I Wish I Could Tell My Senior-Self

Happy February!

In this post, I wanted to do some reflecting and share some wisdom I have gained since coming to college… And I know, I know, what wisdom can a 20-year-old have? Well, going to college is like speed reading a “Discover Who You Really Are for Dummies” book where half the chapters are missing and even when you follow the book exactly, things still don’t always go as planned. After two years and three semesters, I feel like a pro. But watch, tomorrow I will accidentally go to the wrong room or pull a complete amateur move because let’s be real, even the wisest people aren’t that wise during an 8 am class.

Now, while I’m still getting the hang of this whole college thing, I can confidently give advice on things I wish I could tell my senior-self. This idea came when I was applying for internships – I know, scary – and needed my high school transcript. When I went to pull up my old high school’s website, I saw a new “alumni” tab. And that’s when it hit me… I’m an alum! Working in the Office of Development for Embry-Riddle, I always knew I wanted to give back when I became an alum of the university. It had never occurred to me I was already an alum, but of my high school! Long story short, I began to reflect on my high school days and realized I thought I knew it all but boy was I wrong!

To begin, I was a good high school student. It’s not like I ditched class and I’m reflecting on how that was a bad idea. I had a GPA above a 4.0, took college classes, was the president of the National Honor Society and DECA, volunteered, and played a sport. Meanwhile, I worked two jobs and flew at the local airport. Life was busy but very fun. I always knew I wanted to go to Embry-Riddle. It had been my dream school since the 7th grade and my school counselor didn’t even try convincing me otherwise. Sounds like a pretty good time, right? It was! But, there are still things I wish I would have done or known and here they are:

  1. Take as many AP and dual-enrollment classes as possible: When you are paying thousands of dollars to learn basic biology, you will understand what I mean. College, especially ours, has so many interesting courses so try to knock out as many of the basic ones in high school.
  2. Do an internship: My high school offered an internship program and I really wish I had done it! Once you begin applying for internships, you realize that companies want experience and high school is a great time to begin.
  3. Find a mentor: Mentors are super important and I wish I saw this in high school. Always be on the lookout for networking opportunities. My sister’s friend’s mom (convoluted I know, sorry!) went to Embry-Riddle and works for Frontier now! It was nice to have her introduce me to people, write letters of recommendations, invite me to the Women in Aviation Conference as a senior in high school, and then be a great name to drop as an “in” when I attend Frontier events.
  4. Apply for scholarships: You’ve heard it a million times and I’m sorry but… It’s so important to apply, even when you are in college. Since many scholarships have similar essay topics, keep a folder with your essays and use those to quickly write more for other scholarships. Free money is free money and definitely worth 30 minutes of your time. My advice to high schoolers – look local. Even in my tiny town of Castle Rock, Colorado we had many scholarships being handed out by the local library and community organizations.
  5. Tour your top three:  As I mentioned, I knew I wanted to attend Embry-Riddle since 7th grade, so anytime I toured another school, I fell more in love with our unique university. The line was always, “But Riddle has…” If you are unsure where to go, choose your top three schools to tour. Touring a university gives you a great understanding of what your life would be like there. Try to see if you can sit in on a class or if you are touring Embry-Riddle – a flight! Just like you would test drive a car before buying it, tour the campuses of the universities you are most interested in. I say three because if you need to travel it adds up! The investment is definitely worth it! Once you see a campus, you can also begin planning your transition, like what items you need to start buying!
  6. Choose friends wisely: Once you leave high school, your life moves on. While you will see your friends during breaks, and social media allows us to always be connected, make sure your focus is on you and your future. At the end of the day, that’s what matters most. I remember it was so easy to get caught up in drama but once you leave those high school doors for the last time, everything else shifts up in importance. Don’t waste your time and energy now on bad friendships. That being said, keep your closest friends close and if you end up on either side of the country (like me and my best friend), dedicate one day of the week for catching up over FaceTime!
  7. Begin dorm shopping ASAP: Packing for college is exciting and stressful. It can be hard to know exactly what you need but even harder to find certain items in the summer once everyone is shopping for their dorms too. Think ahead and get big ideas, like a mattress topper and steamer now and keep them in your closet. No matter where you go, whichever dorm you end up in, you will appreciate the early access but also the spread of costs since moving can add up.
  8. Join your college’s accepted student social media page: Embry-Riddle and many colleges offer social media connections. Think of it as a mini social media site just for your new incoming class. I know many people met their roommates using this app, made friend groups who met up during orientation, or were able to obtain answers to a lot of their questions this way. There is also an admissions adviser who helps answer questions quickly, so be sure to utilize this app and make friends now!
  9. Enjoy home: Once you are away at college and there are no more home cooked meals, you have to do your own laundry, and no one checks in on you, you quickly miss home. There are many times when I come back from a long day and miss my mom having a meal made for me and being able to do homework with my family in the living room with me. Cherish these moments because you will definitely miss them no matter how close you are to your family.
  10. Use your resources: I recommend talking to your high school counselor and college counselor often. Do not be shy when it comes to college. Finances and academics are confusing as you make your transition over, but remember tons of people do it and so can you. Your counselors have helped many others before you and are there to help now! Be smart and utilize your resources. If you are too nervous, try to find a current student to reach out to. For women coming to Embry-Riddle, you have a Women’s Ambassador. On top of that, my mom’s friend’s daughter also attended school here, so I was able to meet with her during summer and have my questions answered! It’s a small world, you never know who you may know that could be useful! (P.S. Do you FASFA earlier rather than later! It was the most stressful part of starting college for me.)

I hope these tips serve you well! The biggest takeaway: it all works out in the end! These are just tips to be a little extra wise!

– Maddie Dietrich

Day to Day

Hello everyone!

I wanted to discuss a bit about what the average day looks like on campus. I know for me,  before coming to school I was very curious about what college is really like. So I decided I would speak a little on my schedule to help out those other curious people like me.

At Riddle we have an alternating schedule of fifty minute Monday/Wednesday/Friday classes and one-and-half hour Tuesday/Thursday classes. Every once in a while a class, typically a lab, will be offered in a three hour time block on one day of the week. For example, I had my airport management class from 5:15-8:00 pm every Thursday.

I normally schedule my classes back to back and earlier in the day. This means I get up and get classes done. Others prefer breaks so they can do homework, socialize, or get lunch in between. And one of the best parts of college is being able to choose classes that start later – sleeping in is truly the best! I also prefer the shorter classes, but I now choose to only have two on Monday/Wednesday/Friday and three on Tuesday/Thursday. This just seems to make the weeks go by faster in my opinion!

In class I usually bring a snack and a drink. I live off caffeine so the baristas at Starbucks and I are on very good terms. I also take notes on my laptop, but it’s all up to your professor. Some classes you’re in a lab with a computer provided and other times you have a professor who prefers no electronics. To me, classes feel very similar to high school. The sizes are small and the professors truly get to know you!

After class I head to work or to grab lunch. I usually find myself back in my room studying or in a lounge in the dorms. Resident Advisers (RAs) do contact hours where we are required to be available to our residents. I do mine after class. Also for this job, I have duty Wednesday nights. Duty is when RAs sit at the dorm’s front desk and walk around the building periodically. We are here to solve any problems in the dorms and be of help to all! On Monday and Wednesday I work as a Student Assistant in the Office of Development, which is basically fundraising for the university.

Homework-wise, because I know everyone is wondering, it seems as an Aviation Business major I have about a couple hours each night. This of course varies. I try to get a lot done on the weekends because after a day of classes, work, then clubs… I’m exhausted! There are jobs on campus where you can do homework during your shift and RA is definitely one. Some nights I will have nothing but others I feel very busy. It’s all about time management. The best advice I ever heard for college was to treat it like a 9-5 job. That means if you get out of class at 1 pm, sit and knock out your homework until 5 pm. When you get caught up in Netflix bingeing, it gets hard to get motivated again. It’s better to take that focus you had during class and burn through it in one sitting. Again, the amount of homework all just depends on your major, class, and professor.

Around 5:00 pm is when all the clubs get started. The campus is still bustling with involved students this late in the evening! I do have clubs that meet at 9:00 pm but those meeting are typically an hour. That was the weirdest part of transitioning from high school to college, seeing everyone out late studying and going to meetings! I love coming back to my room after a busy day and relaxing or even being super productive and cranking out homework. I live in the new dorms and they are very nice and a quick walk to and from classes!

Overall this is a rough outline of my schedule:

(Notice: your schedule will change every week and no day will be the same but you will always have time to relax and have fun!)

Weekends are genuinely open for me to do homework or spend time with friends. While campus is a little emptier on the weekends, there is still a lot going on. Many times I am invited to volunteer opportunities or events with the clubs I am involved in!

Curious about how this schedule actually plays out? Preview Day is coming soon and is a day where you get to experience college classes and learn about the clubs and activities on campus! Mark your calendars for Saturday, April 7, 2018, 8 a.m.– 4 p.m.!

Maybe see you then?!

– Maddie