Minors: Space Studies and Physics
Hometown: Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania
Campus involvement: Micro-G NExT club, Resident Advisor
Why I chose Embry-Riddle: It is a prestigious school with a focus in space which is a passion of mine.
The wacky semester of curve balls is finally over, but that still does not mean quarantine and online classes are over. For me, I have an online class this summer as well as an in-person class in summer B. So, I will still soon be busy with the continuing challenges of going to college during the quarantine. I will soon be partaking in online math that hopefully will go smoother by having the opportunity to start and finish the class online, and now that I have already done half a semester of online classes this should be a piece of cake right? We shall see, but I was extremely appreciative of all the professors I had this past semester. And have no doubt my professor this summer will be just as great.
Meanwhile, the calming feeling of having finished the spring semester has allowed me to relax and take care of myself a little. I do have to admit I am a bit bored without my school work, so my dog may not be as appreciative of it as I have been constantly bugging her with random photo-shoots and bugging her with all of my extra built-up energy (I think she is ready for me to have a life outside of the house again).
Soon, I will be busy once again as I am conducting research through the Office of Undergraduate research’s Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) this summer. I will be researching the space industry’s impact on air pollution and analysis statistics to see how impactful this industry is on our Earth’s environment. I am very excited about this opportunity to some research I am extremely passionate about and get real research experience. I am excited to see what I discover and cannot wait to begin. Until then, I will be making sure to take of myself and not annoy my dog too much. Also, I will be moving back into the dorms as an RA as Embry-Riddle begins phase one of the crawl, walk, run plan to get our school ready for the fall semester in these times. I am excited to go back and be able to stay focused on my studies and research and assist any studies doing the same.
Everyone has been surviving and hopefully finding some joy in their lives during the quarantine. We have all come so far this semester. I would be lying if I said the transition to online classes was easy or having to time manage moving off campus with school work was a fun time, but through all of these difficult endeavors, we have finally approached the last day of classes. The day where we take a step back for a couple of hours before we start the study grind and all of our finals. The last time we get to spend time with the people at school before we go our separate ways for the summer. Although this year is a little bit different this time of the semester has reminded me to reach out to friends I have not seen or heard from in a while. Whether they are back in their hometowns or staying close to the school, the quarantine has made it impossible to see everyone. I have enjoyed catching up and reconnecting with them via skype and Houseparty and Snapchat and all the other wonderful social media allowing us to survive through the quarantine.
It has given me time to look back at the past year of school on good memories that have been made. From Halloween parties where I am dressed as taco bell hot sauce to beach trips to just last week where I impulsively cut my friend’s hair. There are a lot of memories I am thankful for and cannot wait to make more next fall.
Now it is time for me to wish everyone luck on their finals. We are all so close to being done with the semester and we all have so much to be thankful for. The student and staff of Embry-Riddle have been so helpful throughout this entire crazy situation and I would not want to be surrounded by anyone else right now. To all those graduating, congratulations, you will be missed but I am excited to see the things you accomplish. And for everyone I will see in the summer or the fall, stay safe this summer and make smart decisions. I’ll see you all in the fall. Go crush your finals!
The last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of situations to overcome and conquer. The main situation: online classes. Classes for the rest of the semester are completely online and through virtual meetings. This has been an experience. All of my professors have adapted their classes very well. Some pre-recorded their class lectures and host office hours to allow students to ask questions, some are doing live class sessions over zoom, and some of my classes are very project-based so the professor is there for questions, but otherwise, our projects are all that matter. No matter what my professors have decided to do, they have all been very helpful and understanding during this process of shifting to online learning.
Along with the online classes, I had to move off-campus. I am very lucky to have good friends from Embry-Riddle and am now residing with my friend Rory who lives in Florida. His family has invited me to stay with them on several occasions including anything from hurricane Irma that happened my freshman year to holidays I do not have a family to spend with. They are my home away from home and I am very lucky to have them.
While staying at Rory’s, we do our best to balance school work (even though we often get distracted by each other) with making sure we are both staying on top of our classwork. We are also making sure to take care of our bodies and mind. We recognize when it is time to take study breaks, eat a snack, get fresh air, and goof around a little. We have been filling our free time by playing games and long boarding with our furry friends.
Overall, online classes and the entire COVID-19 situation is a little overwhelming, but knowing I have the support of all of my professors, classmates, friends, and family makes the situation a lot more comforting.
Spring break is finally here, the weather is finally warmer,
and it is now the perfect opportunity to relax while getting slightly ahead on
a some of the schoolwork for weeks to come. This break has given me the opportunity
to get back to a place in Daytona I love so much. The Beach.
The sand beneath my toes. The warmth of the sun on my skin. The feel and smell of the salt in my hair. And the feel of the breeze (unfortunately the water is still too cold to swim in). The beach is my escape and place for relaxation, a home away from home, and this spring break has been amazing weather to be able to enjoy the beach. I believe the beach is a major perk of going to Embry-Riddle’s Daytona campus that isn’t used properly by everyone who goes here. Even though schoolwork is top priority, it is good to prioritize a little bit of fun every once in a while, and the beach is a perfect place to get some sun and be one with the outdoors. It is a great place to focus on yourself and spend time with friends outside. This spring break I have even enjoyed a little sunshine and schoolwork outside which has also improved my mood and making me even more ready to crush the rest of the semester.
Meanwhile, I have also been getting schoolwork done at a
productive pace to keep my mind fresh on new topics and prepared for the next
round of tests. It is good to know I will go back to classes with a little edge
being on some major projects and coding assignments. I am looking forward to
starting classes again with a more relaxed feel and ready to conquer the rest
of the semester attitude.
As a resident advisor (RA), this time of year comes with the excitement of receiving our building placements for the fall semester. I have been through interviews and met with multiple supervisors to figure out where the best community is for me to thrive as an RA. I am currently in the brand-new residence building of New Hall Phase II which has been an amazing opportunity and I have had the best residence this year. I have enjoyed the difference in experience from last year where I spent my time in the entertaining, but close-knit Doolittle.
But after waiting for weeks, the Housing and Residence Life team finally issued our placements for the 20-21 school year. I am happy to announce, I have the honor of being a resident advisor in Stimpson in our student village, and I am looking forward to the new environment and challenges that come with this residence hall. It will be different from the past two years I have been a resident advisor, and it will be the first time I have upperclassmen as residents. I am greatly looking forward to working with a new supervisor and meeting and working with new people next year. As of right now though, I need to continue to focus on my current residents and make sure they make it through their first year of college. Being a resident advisor has helped me come out of my shell and develop new skills for communicating and helping students at Embry Riddle. It is an experience I would not change for anything as the Housing and Residence Life team has become a second family to me. I am excited to help everyone get through the rest of this semester and even more excited to help students continue living at Embry-Riddle next year.
These last two weeks have been crazy with research projects and lectures, but a pleasant surprise last week was when a graduate of Embry-Riddle came to visit the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM). SIAM is a club I found when I began my industrial math research class. It is an amazing club for Math majors to create networks and find out more about potential math job industries.
Last week a graduate from the Computational Mathematics program at Embry-Riddle came to speak to us. He was very interested to tell us his approach to the job industry with a major that you can do so much with. He has been investing time at a big insurance company called MassMutual, where he focuses on programming and software design. He is working on a graduate certificate that his company is paying for, and is looking at pursuing a graduate degree after that as well. After explaining his job, he spoke about his approach to applying for jobs and choosing a job based on offers. In addition, he had spoken of many things we could be doing in college now that will help us in the job field. He had spoken with us about job portfolios, research projects, internships, and practical experience, pretty much anything that could help us look good to potential employers or grad programs.
This was a great speaker to listen to as I soon will be swimming in all the job and graduate school applications, but I now feel like I have a better understanding of how to get to where I need to get to make the best post-graduating decision I can make. The next SIAM meeting is on February 26th and I am looking forward to what else we will be doing to set ourselves up for success.
This new year, and a new decade, has gotten off to the quickest start. Classes are already talking about first exams, clubs are kicking off their semesters, time seems to go by quicker and quicker with each minute, and you still have to figure out how to fit work and sleep into your schedule. This semester is a semester full of projects for me. I am quickly learning that time management for me if more than essential to living on an everyday basis. I wake up and am immediately given notifications about where I need to be when, but it keeps me on top of my game. As I am approaching my expected graduation in December, I am trying my best to get the most out of my last year at Embry- Riddle. I am taking an industrial math research class where I am in contact with Pacific Northwest National Laboratory that works under the U.S. Department of Energy on a project to use math models to interpret data from nuclear energy, and it is truly a class for practical experience. I am also in a senior capstone project class for my space studies minor that focus on the practical operations of mission control operations. In addition, I am getting proposals ready for undergraduate research this summer, hoping to explore the ways the space industry impacts the environment.
With such a busy, but promising semester, I am trying my best to stay on top of things as my schedule gets busier with projects and meetings. Staying healthy both physically and mentally is my top goal for 2020 and am lucky to have friends and workout partners to assist me in keeping on track. Even with a busy schedule, I have still found time to hang out with my friends and go to the beach and the lighthouse (an activity we do often to relax), and despite the fact that we have had a bit of rain and cloudy days, we still manage to find ourselves at the beach with the clearest skies. This year will be the year of progress and learning how to make the best out of the busiest situations and I cannot wait for every second of it!
It is this time of year that always gives me the extra reminder of what I am thankful for, and this year I am especially thankful for my Housing and Residence Life (HRL) family.
This Thanksgiving, I was on duty as a Resident Advisor (RA) for a majority of the break, meaning I cannot leave campus and must respond to calls as needed. As much as it was not pleasant to be away from my family for the holiday, everyone in HRL is amazing and truly a second family that I got to spend some time with this year.
This Thanksgiving one of our HRL supervisors organized a Thanksgiving meal for all the RAs that were not able to go home. We had a turkey and stuffing and we all brought our favorite holiday dishes to share. It was an amazing time and reminded me how thankful I am for the people I work with and the friends I have made throughout my time on HRL staff. Thanksgiving marks about a year since I have been hired on staff and my life has changed a lot since I joined my second family. Everyone in Housing and Residence Life is always so supportive and willing to help. I have had the honor of getting to know the new professional staff members this year and they are all amazing and ready to lend a hand with any issues you could possibly have. In addition, I have made an abundance of friends that I enjoy working with every day.
Thanksgiving is a great time to remember the little things in life that we may tend to take for granted, and I am very thankful of my home away from home and all of my school mates I spend every day with. I am very thankful for this school and everything it has brought me.
I hope everyone else had an amazing Thanksgiving, too.
What a wild few weeks it has been at Embry-Riddle.
In the middle of everything going on here at Riddle, we recently had the honor of the band AJR coming and performing a belated, but rocking, homecoming show. We were all ready for this show. Before AJR, came on the preshow was performed by the Mowgli’s, and they put on an amazing performance to get us ready to hear the main act. AJR came and burned the house down with their set which was the perfect combination of popular hits and songs from their new album Neotheater. Not only did they perform an amazing set but everyone at Riddle was so excited to be there and take a break from the everyday stresses of college. We all went and hung out together listening to some great music. We had avid AJR fans with hats and T-shirts, and someone even made signs to get the band to attempt a backflip. My friends and I had a great time, and even though it was a little cold out, it was a beautiful night that ended with amazing fireworks as AJR did their finale.
After the concert, many people stuck around just to hang, Touch N Go Productions was handing out free t-shirts. My friends and I had a blast spending time together we otherwise wouldn’t have spent together, and after the concert scene had settled down, the campus was crazy with students having fun playing volleyball and hanging out.
Now that we had our fun, it is time to crack down to get these final projects down and our brains in tip-top shape to do the best we can on our finals. Can’t wait to see how well everyone does this finals season and soon we will have the holidays to look forward to!
With this semester only having four weeks left, I have realized one of my addictions is slowly making its way back into my life…..Coffee! Coffee! Coffee!
Ask anyone that knows me and they will tell you I have a problem with the amount of coffee I drink. I have been a coffee lover since before I can even remember. It has always been a part of my life growing up. My parents and grandparents drank it, it was offered to me before I ever thought I would enjoy consuming such a bitter hot beverage, and as I grew up my father taught me about different coffees. So being in college after already LOVING the caffeinated beverage you can only imagine how easy it is for me to consume more coffee than the average person. But the thing I love most about coffee is the time I spend with people when I go out to get coffee.
Whether or not you actually like coffee, most likely it is not preventing you from going to the closest Starbucks for a drink to sip on with a friend. It is very easy to ask someone to go grab a cup with you and has been an easy social icebreaker for me all my life. Not even a year ago, I started talking to who is now one of my good friends Kara over coffee. I meet with my RA supervisor for our meetings every other week over coffee. Going to get coffee is my way of connecting and getting to know people.
With the semester coming to an end faster than anyone can anticipate, it is nice to have a place to escape to and coffee shops are the perfect place to get that extra study time in. Being able to use a space to be productive and enjoy something small makes school a lot less stressful.