Summer Classes & Downtime Recommendations

Happy June everyone! I am currently blogging from Norfolk, VA and I have some news! Life updates: since the Spring 2021 semester has concluded I got my second 4.0 GPA semester in the B.S. Aerospace Engineering program. This is my fourth out of five years at Riddle, and with only two semesters left… I am very excited!

Small life update: I recently bought a car from a friend who graduated and moved away! I recently drove from Florida back to Virginia, and will be spending my first month of online summer classes in Norfolk and Virginia Beach on Meknes time, before maybe traveling a bit in July and doing my online classes from some places I’ve never been before (stay tuned)! Thus, my May schedule has been filled with traveling back to my home state of Virginia, virtual Zoom meetings for Orientation Team and SGA Student Court, pre-program testing and orientations for my summer Arabic classes through Project GO, the University of Arizona, and the Arab American Language Institute in Meknes, Morocco, sunbathing and working out, and reading and finishing the book Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.

Love getting the chance to spend time more with family after the semester ends.

My recent transitional go-tos for staying fit this summer and focusing more on eating healthy and resting/recharging have been going to Hot Yoga in my hometown. Typically Yoga Studios, gyms, and other fitness establishments offer starting specials and since I’ll be back for a month it’s definitely fun to try new things! I’m looking into trying a Spin Class which is essentially a workout on a stationary bike that looks fun too. In addition to being able to venture into fitness studios, I’ve been doing yoga on my own outside in the mornings and I am looking forward to being able to get some sunrise surfing sessions in before June ends. Also, my Youtube fitness class faves are still Yoga With Adriene, Chloe Ting, and POPSUGAR Fitness.

I’ve actually had some down time lately before my summer classes start and plan to read Black, White, and the Grey by John O. Morisano and Mashama Bailey by the pool or at the beach. I have been listening to Leon Bridges, Russ, and am patiently waiting for Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars’s new group Silk Sonic to release their new album on Spotify. Downtime things I’ve been interested in lately are Intuitive Eating, different podcasts on NPR’s Short Wave series (a usually 10-20 min episode on random science topics), catching up on the Handmaid’s Tales on Hulu, and getting excited for Disney+’s release of Raya and the Last Dragon.

Playing catch up on my life, I’ve been trying to do more things I don’t get to enjoy as frequently during the school year. I recently attended a Virtual Zumba Dance class taught by another O-Team member that was a ton of fun, and not something I would typically sign up for.

Homemade pizza in the pizza oven is a super fun perk of being home!

I’ve also been receiving the email newsletter that comes every Friday called Girls’ Night In and the daily (30 second read) newsletter called The Daily Good. Usually I get a ton of emails everyday and checking them can be stressful, so having a few fun reads with good recommendations makes looking at the official emails in my inbox more bearable.

Keep on keeping on folks! Will report back soon with virtual summer class and schedule updates!

Spring 2021 Closing & Fall 2021 Prep

Happy May everyone! I’m currently blogging from Savannah, GA where the local coffee shops and restaurants are treating me well. Today is officially two weeks past my second COVID-19 vaccination shot and I am so thrilled that society is readjusting to being mask-free and more holistically health conscious (meaning prioritizing mental AND physical wellness). Today ERAU-DB sent an official University Communications email from the Office of the President noting that face masks are now optional for everyone on campus according to CDC guidelines! This is such exciting news given the state of the past year and how the global pandemic has impacted everyday operations. Also, I start my Arabic online summer classes in about a week through Project GO! I officially closed off my fourth year (of five) at ERAU this Spring 2021 semester with a term GPA of 4.0. With only two more semesters left before I graduate and commission into the USAF through AFROTC, I have high hopes for one more successful year and now I am excited more than ever that it will be a year mask-free as well!

Orientation from years past!

Orientation Team had our first summer meeting to start preparing for new students arrival to campus in August. The O-Team is bigger than ever and I am very happy to be able to get to know everyone and bond before we meet all the incoming students for Fall 2021. O-Team is a huge family made up of a diverse group of students and together, we span almost every organization on campus, including almost (if not) all majors, a variety of different backgrounds, and we come from all over the world. O-Team is a powerhouse full of helpful student resources, who together are knowledgeable about all things ERAU, are fluent in most languages, and full of positive energy. As a welcome team for those new to campus, your Orientation Leaders and ERAU experts, full of first hand experience and trained in all things ERAU, are here to help make your transition to college as simple, and as fun as possible!

Per the latest ERAU update, effective immediately, masks are now optional and we’re super excited to welcome new students as we resume normal operations!!

I joined O-Team because the first student I met at ERAU helped me during Orientation, then as I moved into my Residence Hall that same O-Team leader was a Resident Advisor (RA) on my floor too! That same student ended up being one of my mentors throughout her time at ERAU before she graduated, one of my best friends, and even my Big in Greek Life! She pioneered the way for me at Riddle. Connections and friendships I had with upperclassman as a freshmen inspired and motivated me throughout my years in college. Those relationships inspire and motivate me today to reach my goals and help others do the same. While people come to college for the academics, the environment and the connections they make at the university are truly key players in why students choose to stay. Whether you’re a traditional extrovert, introvert, combination, or something completely different, college offers a social outlet for you to explore your interests through the variety of clubs, organizations, majors, minors, and extracurricular activities that ERAU has to offer. Our university gives you the tools you need to help you find out how to be true to yourself, explore your interests, find what you’re passionate about and what motivates you, and help you succeed as a student and as a professional in the workforce post-graduation.

Keep on keeping on folks, will report back soon with more updates to follow on how summer classes are treating me and more preparation for the Fall 2021 semester!

The Riddle Rewind: Highlights of Freshman Year

Alternative post title: Embry-Riddle, I love you.

So, you know how YouTube has YouTube Rewind filled with a recap of all of the year’s notable events? I decided that I’d do a Riddle one. So here’s my Riddle Rewind for the 2020-2021 academic year, starting in August and moving forward.

Move-In Day!

Of course move-in day makes the list. I was so excited to move in and get started at Embry-Riddle. I finally got to meet some of the people who I’d known online for months, and it was an amazing feeling.

The Rocket Launches

Rocket go nyoom.

1-2 days into the semester, I went with my suitemates to the August SpaceX launch. We stumbled upon a bridge with a little concrete path under it, and that’s where we watched from. It was my first ever launch, and I didn’t know it yet, but there were many more to come. (I also watched the SpaceX Crew 1 launch and wrote about it here.)

The Online Class Meet-Up Lunch

In the fall semester, my HON150 class was completely online. We the students wanted to organize a get-together so we could finally meet each other. The first one was spontaneously organized, and then they just kept showing up after class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. A big group of us would walk over to the student union and get lunch together following social distancing guidelines.

The Caramel Waters and the Hangout Group

Chaotic evil!!!

Although still around but not as prevalent, there was a group of freshmen in the fall semester called the Hangout group. They were usually found in the student union hanging out, doing work, and playing ping pong. We’d frequently go to iHOP/Waffle House on early Friday mornings (like, between 1-3 AM) and on random trips in the Daytona area. Sometimes we’d explore places at night like people in the horror movies, but thankfully, all of us lived. One time, we were in the union and some of the guys wanted waters. They made a joke to the barista that they’d like caramel waters, so the barista put some caramel in the water. I never had one, but I heard it was disgusting. 100/10 customer service.

The Hair Dye Experiments

I dyed my hair. Or, at least, tried to. Twice. And neither time did it really show up. My tiny YouTube channel also ended up flopping, but it was fun while it lasted. I’ve also learned that my hair will not dye without help. Oops.

Fire Fridays

One of the final Fire Fridays.

Fire Friday took form on Halloween night after I won the costume contest. After the costume contest, everyone was running around in costume while a student burned wood pallets. It soon turned into a reoccurring event, but it ended up dying down in late March. They were fun while they lasted; a lot of people would come and hang out at the fire. It was also a great place for people to get to know each other.

The Only Correct Usage for Electric Longboards

Nyoom?

Going along with Fire Fridays, people would bring their longboards and board on the sidewalk by the dorms. It was pretty fun to watch, and people would race each other. One of the most notable races was between two guys on electric longboards in the picture above. In my opinion, electric longboards are dangerous and could result in a major injury like a broken jaw. However, if you go slow(ish) on them while sitting down, they’re perfectly acceptable to use. I actually got to ride one like that, and I’ll admit, it was like riding a mini roller coaster.

Omigod You Guys: Joining a Sorority

I already kind of wrote about this one when I got a bid, and here, when I found out who my big was, so I’ll leave the links there. I will say that it was a really good decision; I love my sorority sisters. If you’re even remotely interested, investigate it!

Drives and Karaoke

Real friends drag you out of bed.

While usually late at night, one of my friends and I started going out and driving while singing random songs in the car. These could range anywhere from World Burn from Mean Girls to Radioactive by Imagine Dragons. We’d also usually stop at Wawa or Buc-ee’s and get a slushie. The picture above was after my second COVID shot when the friend took me and my suitemate singing since I shouldn’t stay in bed all day. It was fun, though.

My Chaotic Good Honors Class

I don’t have a picture for this one, but I took Dr. Lear’s HON250 class and it was so much fun!! The class was about video games and naturally, she set up a class Discord where students could talk amongst themselves. It has several channels: general, memes, pet pictures, in-class instructions, in-class responses, and most notably, the quotes channel. The class Discord was a very popular means of communication and a good source of student bonding.

At the end of the year, we planned to have an in-class awards show. However, the last day of class was cancelled, so we did it over Google Forms and Discord. I was the Awards Chair, so I got role-assigning permissions from Dr. Lear, and I ended up winning Emailholic (most emails sent to professor) and And You Can Quote This! (most notable contributions to the quotes channel). They make absolutely no sense without context.

Going Splat “fOr My jOb”

EaglePalooza was… interesting. Embry-Riddle has no shortage of interesting things for students to do. I was covering the event on social media for one of my on-campus jobs, and it was pretty fun. I wrote about it here.

The Campus Pets

Her name is Beep.

On the Daytona campus, there are plenty of stray cats. One is quite friendly, approaching the tables where people sit and watching us. The PAWS (Protecting Animal Wellness Society) club has named her Beep, and I always liked seeing her around. She reminded me of my cats who are here at home.

Finishing the Year

It was nice to end the schoolwork of the year, but I missed my friends as they moved out. Some people moved out before finals week, others moved out during and after. It was bittersweet, but at the same time, most of them are coming back for the fall 2021 semester, so I’ll see them again. The year ended with a lot of good memories, too many to put into just one blog post. I’m glad I got to have a semi-normal first year at Embry-Riddle, and I’m even more glad that I can say I go here.

See you in the next post, and hopefully at Riddle! (Maybe you’ll even be in my orientation group…)

The Week Before Finals Week

Carly slamming face-first into an inflatable go brr.

Sooooo finals week is coming, but there’s been no shortage of stuff to do. This weekend, we had EagleFest, which was moved indoors due to the rain. However, the Touch-N-Go, the entertainment division, pulled off a great event. There was free ice cream, cake on a stick, candies, donuts, plants… anything!

And the capstone: sets of inflatables plus an outdoor zipline. The inflatable obstacle course I went on was modeled on Wipeout’s big red balls, and we’ll just say that I wouldn’t win Wipeout.

The physics professors are having a field day: if Carly launches herself at a 30-degree angle at 2 m/s, then how long does it take her to fall flat on the ground? Brownie points to anyone who solves this.

I was a little too short to get back on top, so I ended up walking along the sides. A few of my other friends chose to do the inflatable obstacle course race, and it was pretty fun to watch.

That’s when we headed over to the zipline. Touch-N-Go had somehow gotten a portable zipline company, so I was able to zipline down Legacy Walk towards the Henderson Welcome Center. It was raining during part of the day, so the zipline had to shut down at points, but it was so worth it to wait in the line.

Zipline go brr.

It was a fun weekend.

As for the rest of this week, I’ve been anticipating finals. I’ve finished two classes already, but I do have more work to do. I’ve turned in and had my EGR 115 project graded, and I’m happy with the grade I got. I also took my chemistry lab practical on Tuesday, and there’s no more work in that class.

I’m still working on my HON 250 class, which is about video games. The final assignments relate to our project, where we design our own video game based on ERAU, Daytona Beach, or somewhere significant in Florida. Our video game is about a fictional ERAU campus on a fictional world. I’m in charge of the narrative.

I’m also working on my EGR 101 project. Our team is making a tennis ball launcher for dogs, called the Fetch for Fun! ball launcher. If I had a dog, and it was for sale, I would totally buy the ball launcher: it’s cost-effective, designed by a small business, yet still hand-built with care. We show it off to the professor next week.

As for my other classes, math and physics, we haven’t been doing any projects. In physics, we’re talking about rotational motion, and my professor brought a spinning circle to class. It proved his point well and also made us dizzy.

Wheeeeeee! And yes, those are cats on my mask.

When I stood on it and slowly spun, I’m not going to lie, I felt like a video game character. Either way, it’s been a fun week here at Riddle. See you in the next post, and hopefully at Riddle! (:

New Traditions & Social Connections

Happy April folks! I am currently blogging from Daytona Beach, Florida and the spring semester is so close yet so far from being over! Homework is slowing down as projects, tests, quizzes, and finals are picking up and we only have a few weeks between us and summer!

Some brief updates: I got rehired as an RA for next year and I got assigned a new building which I am so happy about! I also discovered a new affinity for iced chai tea lattes, and my favorite finals go-to drink… iced cappuccinos! Stopping by the Starbucks on campus in between classes or studying for a quick pick-me-up has been a recent favorite of mine.

I started a few weeks ago FaceTiming my sister every Sunday evening, its been an important highlight that I look forward to every week amongst the chaos and busy flow of both of our lives. Giving time and energy to people you love is one of the most rewarding feelings! FaceTiming with people you miss may also help you feel more connected, especially in our current era of social distancing and masked living. 

My sister’s pup Daisy who I also get to see over FaceTime every Sunday!!

I am one shot away from being fully vaccinated and I am very excited to be done! Traveling is one of my favorite activities and not being able to go abroad the past two summers has definitely hit me hard. I deleted my social media accounts at the beginning of the semester to take a small mental break and post-finals I am considering re-downloading them to stay connected with my friends that are graduating and moving away for the summer. I have also been looking into Pinterest lately as there’s some super cool inspiration and motivation that helps me feel more connected. 

Making friends is definitely challenging and the social life component is usually a very important aspect of college connections! I’ve supplemented “normal” hanging out with friends by sharing digital connections with my friends in the meantime. Usually this consists of sending music recommendations (Spotify!), workout or yoga videos (typically Popsugar Fitness or YogaWithAdriene), cool podcasts we want to share (NPR’s Shortwave on Spotify), or show/movie recommendations on Disney+, Netflix, or Hulu. 

Shortwave is a super cool podcast that is fairly short and is perfect for a study break, walk between classes, or something to listen to if you are curious and like learning more about the world in between switching your laundry!

I don’t usually have a ton of free time, so sometimes while I’m eating dinner I will watch a show or a movie for a few moments before hopping back into my to-do lists. Recently I’ve checked out on Netflix – Nadiya’s Time To Eat and Nadiya Bakes, both which I highly recommend for a light hearted good vibes simple cooking show that helps me look forward to being able to cook again in a kitchen this summer. I also recently watched Onward, Ferdinand, and Lilo and Stitch on Disney+ which are all extremely cute and have bright colors and end on happy notes!

Keep on keeping on folks! Will report back soon with final projects, finals, and life updates!

April & Air Force Updates

Happy April everyone! I’m currently blogging from Daytona Beach, we’re about two weeks out from finals and my life is currently hectic. I find that when I am faced with a lot of assignments and not a lot of time I rely heavily on routines and lists. Some of my favorite tried and true routines that I’ve found which work best for me include being very productive while I do laundry and drink coffee!

Something really interesting that I have been thinking about lately in my *limited* free time has been that there is a huge difference between free time and availability, although the two are often confused! A lot of times in college you will most likely be asked when you have class, meaning that the time you don’t have class is “negotiable availability”, but its very important to schedule in free time during your weeks to prevent burnout!

A super cute stress survival guide with fun tips that I find online I wanted to share!

Something very exciting that I got to do this week was submit my “dream sheet”! A dream sheet is an Air Force Form 53 where you list out six potential career fields you want once you enter active duty. You rank the six choices from your top to your least favorite choice. My top three were Intelligence, Information Operations, and Public Affairs, but there’s always a chance I get engineering too (because of my degree in Aerospace Engineering).

The reason I don’t want to be a professional engineer post college is simple, I’m not passionate about it! I am extremely grateful that on my fourth of five years working towards a degree in Aerospace Engineering I have been as successful as I have and that I only have one more year left. I am graduating May 2022 and I am so excited!!

My puppy niece Daisy with a big stick, also showing that if there is will, there is a way!

My time at Riddle has opened my eyes to things I am passionate about though, including joining the Air Force post college thanks to Air Force ROTC solidifying my already prospective goals from the time I was in high school. While in college I also realized I was very passionate about language learning!

Riddle is a heavily tech reliant school and while it does have many great programs outside of engineering and pilot training, I was already too far in when I realized I really liked languages! I made the conscious decision to follow through on earning my Aerospace Engineering degree in hopes that in my career post college in the Active Duty Air Force I will be able to use my language skills more frequently.

Riddle does offer options to minor in a variety of language studies, but if you’re in higher level classes the language programs aren’t extremely extensive. I’ve supplemented this by spending all my summers participating in language learning programs like Project Global Officer, available to all branches of ROTC students, in order to maintain and expand my Arabic fluency. If there is a will, there is a way!

I hope this inspires you to find out what you’re truly passionate about and consider if there is a way to be practical as well as have some fun along the way pursuing your goals and seeking new opportunities! More exciting updates to come, keep on keeping on folks, will report back soon!

April & Pandemic Adjustments

Happy April everyone! I’m currently blogging from Daytona Beach, Florida and I have been incredibly busy lately. We have about a month left of school until finals and I feel like there is SO much to do before then.

Most of my classes have final exams and final projects, so the entire month of April is crazy slammed for me. In other news I am scheduled to get my first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine in a few days and will be receiving the second dose of the vaccine during finals (so I am really hoping I don’t have any negative side effects because finals will happen whether I feel dizzy or not). I am hoping my professors will have some leniency given that the current day and age is full of a lot of unusual circumstances and getting vaccinated is a priority of the university (and my health).

My in-person study abroad program plans in Meknes, Morocco have changed to completely online due to the global pandemic. This means my summer plans for where I will be completing my online classes are up in the air. Typically in the past while I’m done online courses I’ve house-hopped with my family, but at the moment given the nature of travel restrictions, other than committing to bringing my laptop with me to log into Zoom, it’s difficult for me to solidify plans of where I will actually be.

A common theme that I’ve found reoccurring in my life recently is uncertainty, specifically having to do with plans for the future. My advice to you from one person who is going through it to another, is to take everything one day at a time.

I love to-do lists and setting milestones for timelines of where I want to be in completing assignments leading up to their due dates. I also recently deep cleaned by room! Washing my sheets and bedding, cleaning my floors, organizing my living space, and overall refreshing where I study, sleep, and workout has a big impact on my mental health, often an impact I don’t realize until I’ve reorganized and cleaned and feel so much better in the space around me.

Aircraft I designed for my AE 413 Aircraft Stability and Control class using Matlab

I’ve talked about time management and balance before, and as being busy seems to be a lifestyle for me, I’ve been setting aside time every day to stretch and do yoga or fit in a quick workout as a break between assignments. Sometimes taking a break and looking away from a problem or a page you’ve been working on for a while is just the thing your mind needs to process what you’re working on. 

Spring picture of my niece pup Daisy!

In the past I’ve found myself staying up thinking about how to complete engineering problems, so I like to “shut off” my working brain and switch into relaxation mode at the end of every day. I do this by setting a bedtime routine as best I can by having my shower “mark” the end of my homework for the day, and setting my oil diffusers with calming oil blends. I’ve found while being in the same environment of my room, the small changes such as setting up my bed for sleep make a big difference in my mindset and switching from work mode to off mode.

Keep on keeping on folks, stay safe, will report back soon!

I Got the COVID Vaccine

Hey yo, just got the vaccine check. That means that I have anti-body-ody-ody-ody-odies!

So, as the post says, I got the COVID vaccine! I got the first dose of the Pfizer one on Tuesday, April 6, 2021- exactly one year after I committed to Embry-Riddle.

Vaccines opened up to all part and full-time Florida residents on Monday, April 5. On Friday, I had registered for a vaccine at 12 PM at the Walgreens about a mile south, so I was good to go. Since I’m not from Florida, I had to bring two proof of residency documents.

For all on-campus students, the Embry-Riddle Housing Department offers a proof-of-residence letter. For the other, since I have an on-campus job, I printed out my W-2 form with my ERAU box address on it.

I arrived about ten minutes early and checked in, having already filled out the vaccine informed consent form. Once they looked over my proof of residency, I was good to go. They stapled my receipt (it was free, billed to my insurance) to an information packet about the vaccine, and then directed me to the waiting area.

Pfizer vaccine information sheet.

Since I’d already signed the informed consent form, I waited around in the waiting room until my name was called. The vaccine itself was like a normal shot; I was called into a private room where someone administered the vaccine. It was a tiny needle and didn’t really hurt; in fact, it was one of the least painful shots I’d ever gotten. I can’t watch needles go into a person, but I’m not afraid of them, which is pretty lucky.

Once I was done, I got the infamous CDC vaccination card:

Since the shot was done, I underwent the mandatory 15 minute waiting period. This period is to ensure that I didn’t have a serious reaction to the vaccine, and once it was up, I was free to go. I continued the rest of my day like normal, and I can’t say I’ve felt too many side effects from the first dose of the vaccine.

I’ve heard the second one is worse, but this one’s fine. I haven’t had any side effects at all, which is really nice. I’m excited that vaccines are becoming available for people who want them. I’ll see you in the next post and hopefully at Riddle!

Graduating?

Upcoming Ceremonies | Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide

My last semester at ERAU is finally coming to an end. After four years and four different flight ratings, I will be graduating this May. The thought of graduating hasn’t hit me yet, because of how unique this year has been with the pandemic. Unfortunately, the graduation will not be in person, and the ceremony will be held virtually. It is a bit disappointing to end a huge chapter of my life with a virtual presentation, but I’m excited for what will come next. I finished my last flight course, which is the multi-engine add-on rating this March, and my application for graduation was accepted.

My four flight ratings that I’ve received at Riddle

This semester has definitely been a challenge for a lot of us as our breaks (three-day weekends and the spring break) were all taken away in order to prevent students from traveling during a pandemic. As a result of this, many of the students are burned out and exhausted from school and flying. There is still a month of school left and quite frankly, I am looking forward to being done in May. It is critical to balance work and play, especially when you can’t hang out with friends as freely as you used to before the pandemic. Many of my friends and I discuss how exhausted we are, and I keep telling them to focus on their personal mental health rather than overworking themselves.

My plan for after graduating is currently to work towards getting my Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) license in order to teach people how to fly while building my hours for the regionals. I want to spend some time off in the summer and hopefully travel around the country to visit friends and family now that the country is slowly opening up. I am also planning on getting my vaccine soon, and I encourage everyone else to go get theirs.

It’s a unique situation I find myself in as a college graduate from the pandemic class. However, I like to stay optimistic as the world and the aviation industry slowly recovers, and I hope that things will go back to how it was before 2020. Our awesome campus doesn’t feel normal as it isn’t as full and alive as it used to be.

I Got A Big Sorority Sister Surprise!

“Ever loyal, ever lasting, ever big/little.” – My Instagram Caption

So, as you may have previously read, I joined the Theta Phi Alpha sorority back in mid-February. One of the most well-known aspects of a sorority is the Big and the Little Sister- or simply the Big and the Little. In our chapter of Theta Phi Alpha, each new member gets an older mentor to help her acclimate to the sorority.

The process begins with the Big and Little bios. Each potential Big and Little will fill out an information sheet with contact information (the “bio”). Each Big receives the Little bios, while the Littles receive the Big bios. From there, the Bigs and Littles can reach out to each other during a period called “Big/Little dating,” where the point is for each Little to meet each Big.

In my incoming class (Beta Rho), there were two Littles, myself and one other girl, while there were four Bigs. I went on dates with three of the four Bigs, since one of the Bigs’ schedule did not match up with mine.

After that, we told our New Member Educator who we wanted as our bigs, and then it was her job to pair us up for the fun part: Big/Little Week!

Big/Little Week is the week where Bigs will send someone to deliver their gifts to their Littles. The Littles don’t know who their Big is until the reveal, and no one in the sorority will tell them, but they are free to speculate. During Big/Little Week, the Bigs also give their Littles gift baskets on each weekday. Here’s what my Day 1 basket looked like:

Reece’s are my favorite candy, but I ate them before I took this picture. Whoops.

It was really nice. Before I took the picture, I had eaten all three Reece’s cups that came in the basket. Each basket has a note in it, usually some painted canvas decorations, and food. The notes usually explain the day’s theme while also giving hints to who the Big is. However, there is no guarantee that the Big is honest in the hints…

This sort of process continued for the entire week. I’d get texts from a burner phone number that my Big had, and then she’d arrange to get gifts to me.

On Friday, at the arranged time, I went over to the College of Arts and Sciences and waited inside while the initiated members prepared the reveal. I waited with the other girl in my pledge class and one already initiated girl, who then walked us with our eyes closed in front of the Wright Flyers statue and Embry-Riddle sign.

The New Member Educator took a Polaroid picture of us with our Bigs behind us. We had to face forward while the picture developed and then when it developed, she handed it to us.

This is my Big!

The other new member and I turned around to find my Big behind me! From there, we hugged, laughed, and talked for a bit. We took more pictures and hung outside for a bit. An hour or so later, we went to dinner.

I met the rest of my sorority family, which is a line of Bigs and Littles. Everyone in Theta Phi Alpha is part of a family, and six of us went to Ichi Ni San, an Asian restaurant in Daytona. It was a great week with a great end; I enjoyed the entirety of Big/Little Week and was glad to meet my Big. Joining a sorority was a good idea, and if you’re considering it, I highly suggest looking into them.

See you in the next post… and hopefully at Riddle!