Recharging & Responsibilities

Happy October folks! I’m classically blogging from Daytona Beach, currently camped out at the ROTC building on a Sunday afternoon doing homework. Fall break was this past week and it was definitely well needed. I stayed local for the break hitting up coffee shops, catching up on sleep, and doing large quantities of homework.

As midterm time is among us, I had most of my tests before fall break, but midterms also mean RA deadlines! This means new hall door decorations, new bulletin boards, and more biweekly hall traditions! This also means time for the Fitness Assessment in AFROTC which consists of one minute of push-ups, one minute of sit-ups, and a 1.5 mile run for time.

At a local coffee shop close to campus drinking lavender chamomile tea and doing incompressible aerodynamics homework.

Something surprising that I realized over the break was… that I miss my friends! I know, this may not seem like an out of ordinary thing, but I almost don’t realize how inter-connected my everyday life is with the people around me. Now, if we zoom out a bit and look at the big picture four days is not a lot of time, but when you consider that I see my friends multiple times a day in different settings it feels off when they’re not around.

To put it in perspective: I wake up early and go to PT or to Leadership Laboratory (LLAB) with my AFROTC family, go to class until about 2pm, usually find myself back at the ROTC building a few more times for various meetings, paperwork, or presentations, then I workout with my ROTC friends, typically have an RA duty shift in the evenings or a staff meeting, then I go to sleep and copy paste and repeat Monday-Friday. 

I tend to not view myself as a very social person, because of how much I value my alone time to rest and recharge by doing yoga, meditating, or sleeping, but in reality I spend the majority of my days being social. The main point I’m getting out of this, is that I’m pretty much an introverted extrovert. Once I’m recharged after a day or two I thrive in the busy hustle of everyday life hopping between my friends from AFROTC, O team, RA, classes, etc.

Before the break I had a math test, a compressible aerodynamics test, and an incompressible test, a technical report document due, in addition to arabic homework and other meetings, presentations, and responsibilities. When I study, unless I’m doing practice problems in a group, I typically prefer to be in my room or reserve a study room in the library.

But in particular, when studying for my compressible aerodynamics test recently I found myself outgrowing my desk with my spread of papers so I migrated to my floor to go over material. After a few hours when I finished I got up and realized that my creative learning process may be a little unconventional, but it works… 

My post studying floor space before my compressible aerodynamics test.

I hope everyone bounces back to find your post Fall Break groove and keep pushing until Thanksgiving Break and finals. Will report back soon. Keep on keeping on!

Hurrication & Misc. Happenings

Happy September folks! Howdy and welcome back! The first week of school came, then Hurricane Dorian came, and now the second (first?) week of school is happening once again.

Although, as I’m sure a few of my other Engineering pals out there have experienced, the hurrication was a nice “break”, and by break I mean it was lovely to be able to take my leisurely time doing homework and getting a jump start into planning for all my classes. The downfall of this break though, is of course that this coming week will probably be a tad bit squished with all the missed material.

Currently reminiscing to the week before the fall semester started during Orientation with my fellow O-teamer friend Kara.
Paint U with O-team!
Orientation Team retreat in August!

Orientation Retreat is essentially a highly condensed summer camp bonding experience for a few days that works magic for the O-team and takes us from a bunch of individuals to a highly functioning super team. I cannot exactly explain it, but to sum it up I learned about 80 people’s names and life stories over the course of about 3 days. I love O-team.

I am super excited for this school year, and for fall, as it’s my favorite season. Although fall in Florida isn’t exactly the coldest season, my birthday is in late October and hopefully by around that time the weather should be getting into the 70s at night, which is absolutely perfect for camp fires! The fire pits in the courtyard between New Hall Phase 1 and New Hall Phase 2 have been my go to, as well as my RA staff’s go to gathering place for s’mores and staff bonding. RA’s have weekly staff meetings, and honestly taking a break from homework and having s’mores with the staff while we do weekly recaps is a pretty cool and unique spin on traditional meetings… and it’s even better with the crisp air that accompanies cool autumn evenings!

In other news, I recently road tripped to St. Augustine for the day over the hurrication and got three new air plant babies for my dorm room that I am very excited about. I had a lot of plants in my dorm last year but I didn’t have the chance to take them back to school when summer ended because of all my traveling, so I’m currently rebuilding my collection. I love air plants, succulents and cacti, and hardy herbs that are low maintenance but smell good (and also the addition of fresh herbs to meals is a life hack for making dorm food taste SO much better).

My new air plants!

Will report back soon. Keep on keeping on y’all. Enjoy getting back into the swing of things, as I’m sure I will be!

Self Care & Semester Prep Thoughts

Happy end of July from Tucson, Arizona, from which I will shortly be migrating south for the winter back to Florida to my Daytona Beach home where RA training, Orientation Team, and AFROTC fall semester prep awaits me.

While going back to school in the fall is certainly exciting and I love being involved in so many great things on campus, I had a moment recently thinking about the future and all the obligations ahead of me… and honestly it was a little overwhelming. Then I took a step back and realized I was stressing myself out for no reason. I am where I am because I have overcome so many things and I have earned these opportunities that I sometimes refer to as “responsibilities”. 

Stopping to breathe and appreciate the Arizona clouds in monsoon season.

This blog goes out to my younger self who started college three years ago with a wild passion for trying new things, taking risks, and finding myself:

The first piece of advice I would tell my younger self, who was extremely eager to move to Florida and gain some real independence from high school life, is that while yes it’s good to get a running start and socialize and meet new people, be yourself above everything. I am naturally not very extroverted, and for some reason when I first moved to college I felt pressure that I needed to be, but in reality it was only in my head. 

College is about finding yourself and becoming more of who you are without limitations, so why was I imposing these rules of how I should act on myself? Maybe to fit in? But I learned the best part about college is you don’t have to “fit in” and I wish I would’ve realized that a lot earlier.

I spend my lunch breaks during the week eating peanut butter sandwiches laying under shady trees and listening to music with my roommate as a short break before we start afternoon office hours, tutoring, homework, and studying.

Now I suppose I am not your “conventional” college student, but really is anyone conventional? I used to dream of turning down plans on a Friday night to workout with some gal pals, do a face mask, practice yoga, read a book, and be in bed by 8pm, but I was never courageous enough to stand up for myself and do it! I always felt guilty and “obligated” to hang out with people, but I realized the stigma around being selfish and taking care of yourself is extremely blurred. You can’t be the best version of yourself if you’re burnt out and constantly running on empty. As a naturally introverted person I recharge when I am alone, and it’s important for my mental health!

Moral of the story is: Self care is SO important! I see no problem now turning down plans for self care, and I am so much happier now that I don’t make myself feel guilty for “me time”. At the end of a long, stressful, busy week it is WELL deserved to rest, and to always listen to your body (I am very guilty of this) when you start to get sick. Typically if I start to feel under the weather I go into a period of doubt where I think if I ignore my symptoms they will go away, I tell myself I’m too busy and don’t have time to be sick, but lets be real… this makes it worse! As soon as you feel yourself start to become a little under the weather, rest!

In the midst of my busy schedule I always ensure I have time to check in with myself, even if it’s just 5 minutes at the end of the day, to survey how I’m doing physically, mentally, and emotionally and to take a little time to work on those things if they’re not great. Take time for yourself in the midst of everything to breathe and check in, typically that’s when you need it most.

Arizona sunset from the top of a parking garage my roommate and I ventured to en route back to our dorms one evening.

Keep on keeping on folks! I’ll catch you back in a few weeks closer to the chaos and excitement of the new school year. Remember to be kind to others and yourself always!

Fall Semester & AFROTC

Happy August everyone! I’m currently blogging from Daytona Beach and the Fall 2018 semester is about to begin!

The past couple days have been filled with late nights and early mornings, but instead of studying or AFROTC, the latest concentration has been on move-ins of residents as a Resident Advisor and new student orientation from the perspective of an O-Teamer. An O-Teamer is an Orientation Team Ambassador (ie team member) and Orientation Team is essentially a group of enthusiastic, positive, motivated individuals who come together to welcome students to campus. To sum up the past week, orientation has certainly been very busy, but also a lot of fun. From Paint-U, Glowcade, to the beach bash, the magic show, the movie viewings, the magicians, and the hypnotists, the past couple weeks have been eventful in preparation for student arrival.

A fellow O-Teamer and I before Paint-U!

In other news, AFROTC is starting up again and I’m feeling slightly reminiscent into my AS100 year as I look forward to my AS200 year and meeting all the new AS100s. One year ago I was new to Embry-Riddle, AFROTC, engineering, and Florida. Just looking at how far I’ve come in one year absolutely amazes me and gets me so excited to see all the potential of younger generations as I’m actively contributing to the culture and atmosphere at Embry-Riddle. When I first started college I didn’t know anyone, and I was very nervous. This year I have such a strong support system of people I’ve met only less than one year ago, but feel like I’ve known my entire life. Riddle changed from a foreign place to a home, and I didn’t even realize that was possible when I first arrived. As the Air Force’s birthday approaches, and AFROTC prepares its annual celebration I’m looking back at photos from last year and how I greatly appreciated the irreplaceable connection with the people who surround me. We really were and are such a close community. I am so proud to be a part of our detachment.

The Air Force’s birthday in 2017!

I will be picking up my ABUs again pretty soon and as the semester kicks off I’m ready to be fully back in the swing of things. After spending the past month training and preparing for the school year to begin I’ve come to appreciate that no matter how much time you spend with any given group of people there is always something new you can learn from them every day. That beautiful phenomenon occurred to me as I bask in the nostalgic glory of how I’ve learned, grew, and bonded with the people that have been working besides me this past month.

Orientation Team group photo!

Will report back soon!

Stay Organized, Stay Positive, Stay Focused

Although second semester has only just begun, I’m definitely starting to feel my course load, my two on-campus jobs, as well as being a member of five organizations on campus, start to bear down on me. Most people advise me to take a step back and prioritize what is most important and then cut back on what is not. However, when you’re passionate about everything you’re involved in, how does one cut back on involvement? The answer for me is: you don’t.

I’ve always been one to be involved in clubs, sports, and extracurriculars; even while I was in high school. Now that I have the freedom to use my time how I want to in college, I am involved even more! If you are like me, you understand that being involved and constantly having to attend meetings, social events, do homework, and even travel across the country (I’m so excited!), is just how you like to live. I’ve realized over my first semester here at ERAU that I love to be on-the-go!

This semester I am juggling my job as a Blogger, my job as a Social Media Assistant for Student Activities, being an Orientation Team Ambassador, being a Women’s Ambassador/Webmaster, as well as being an active member of NBAA, Women in Aviation, and Airport Management Club all on top of my five classes. At this point, my planner is starting to look a little crazy, but that’s just how I like it! I also have the privilege of traveling to Seattle, Washington, Savannah, Georgia, Dallas, Texas, and Murray, Kentucky this semester due to various different conferences, outreach events, and social events. You could say being on-the-go 24/7 is what keeps me on my toes!

I never would be able to manage all of it if it weren’t for these three must-have’s however, so I’ve decided to share them with you…

1. My planner: This handy ERAU Planner is what is now serving as my lifeline. If I lost it, my life would be in shambles! I write down everything in it: meetings, assignments, reminders, flights, social events, etc. You name it, it’s in my planner!

2. Sleep: I cannot stress this enough, sleep is the most important part of my daily routine. I am not one of those people who can run solely off of one hour of sleep and a 32oz Latte!  I pride myself on getting at least seven hours of zzz‘s per night: it truly does make a difference in your day!

3. 9-5: I once heard from someone that in order to be able to manage all of the organizations you want to be a part of, you have to commit to your academics like they’re a job. This means working, in my case, from 8am-5pm everyday on homework, academic-related meetings, or on my jobs. Once I have finished my work for the day, then I can go out to my club meetings or go explore Florida. This is the best piece of advice I have ever received!

I know a lot of you are probably like me; working yourself until you have a mental breakdown, but that’s okay! I’m not going to say it’s easy, but it is definitely achievable if you stay organized, stay positive, and stay focused! Whose right is it to tell you that you cannot be involved in all that you want to? I say, go out there and do it!

Until next time,

Lindsey

Kicking off the New School Year

Well, school has officially started and my favorite time of the year has already come to pass: ORIENTATION! I have never been more proud to be an Orientation Ambassador and to attend Embry-Riddle. Orientation has been the most rewarding experience of my college career and I now have a new Owesome O-team family! We kicked off orientation week with a retreat at Camp Ocala, where all of the student leaders ( including Student Government Association, Housing and Resident Life, ERRSA, and Orientation Team) came together for team building activities and some fun. The friendships that were made and unity that was created in these few days helped all of us make it the best orientation yet!

The new team pumped for orientation!

Kayaking with the O!

Fun team building activities!

One of our favorite games to play: Mafia!

Having some fun at Playfair!

Orientation week was filled with all kinds of events, including check-in, convocation, movies, a magician, group sessions, BBQ’s, advisement, a speaker, a hypnotist, pep-rally, info sessions, Playfair, volleyball and soccer games, and so much more! The best part about being on the O-team is our “mullet” philosophy: business in the front and party in the back. As an orientation ambassador it is our responsibility to professionally transition the incoming students and prepare them for classes, while also displaying tons of energy, school spirit, and bringing excitement for student involvement on campus. We’re able to accomplish these tasks in a professional manner while also remembering to have some fun.

SGA and O-team at Playfair

O-team showing off their awesome ERAU swag!

Showing some school spirit at the pep-rally!

Our team is comprised of about 40 members, and it is our job to set the stage for 1200 incoming students during orientation. We are their first impression, their go-to, and their leaders at ERAU. It is such an incredible feeling to know that we were able to make an impact on the lives of all of these students, and get them eager to join organizations, excel academically, and find their place on campus. Reliving orientation for the third time now renews my excitement and drive here at ERAU, and has unveiled a passion I didn’t even knew I had. I love being a leader and inspiring others to do their best, to work hard, and make their dreams attainable. I love interacting with people and learning about all of their different backgrounds. I love having the power to make a difference, even if it’s just one person at a time. I am really looking forward to see what the Class of 2017 is going to bring to Embry-Riddle because they couldn’t have kicked off the new school year any better!

What have I been up to besides orientation? Thanks for asking! 🙂 I’ve recently taken on a new leadership role as president of Sigma Sigma Sigma, which is going to be much more responsibility than my previous role as Vice President, but I couldn’t have asked for a better chapter that will support me and the officer team as we transition this semester. I am also getting involved in Formula SAE this semester, where we will design, build, and test a small Formula-style race car. Not to mention, balance my full-time course load of engineering classes. Should be a busy but fun semester, so keep reading the blog for updates!