I am out!

by Astrid Rangel

Recently I had to say goodbye to the place I called home for two full semesters. If you have read any of my other posts, you will know I am pretty blunt with what I write and I will say, I CRIED! I lived there for almost a year and I made some pretty good memories with the people there. I have made friendships that I hope last a lifetime. I am not disappointed at all of my first year of college. It was everything I had imagined and more. Texas State was more than good to me and for that I thank whatever higher power had to do with that. See, a lot of things happened in the course of two semesters and I know they have made me a better person in general.

First, DORM LIFE.  

Living in a dorm is not as bad as some people make it seem. I can say I enjoyed it more than I should have. Sterry Hall was a great place live in general. The community feel is amazing. The RAs were always there to help, and I got the best RESIDENCE DIRECTOR I could have asked for. I joined Hall Council and even though it was hard to balance everything I had to do, it was one of the best decisions I could have made. I got to meet a lot of interesting people and getting involved helped me open up to a lot of other opportunities. So if you are an incoming freshman and you are hesitant about living in a dorm, my advice would be get out there. DO NOT stay in your room for the first three days because you are afraid. That’s what I did, and I found out that when I opened that door great things happened. Go down to the lobby, make friends, talk to the RAs (they are actually really open to talking to their residents), just be yourself and go out there. You won’t regret it, I promise.

Second, CLASSES. 

Hold on to your seats, guys, because classes are a complete roller coaster.  Being responsible is a very important part of you now. You have to be on top of everything. THINGS DON’T GET EASY. But then again, anything that is easy is not worth the while. Your syllabus will be your best friend and believe me when I say you’re going to want to memorize that thing front and back. Studying will also become your life. You just have to. It’s not high school anymore. Your professors want you to pass, but they can’t help you out if you don’t put the necessary effort. So just be responsible, be aware of your work and you should be fine.

Third, HAVING FUN. 

I think one of the main things people think when they think of college is all the parties and the fun they will have. I won’t lie. I had my fair share of fun this past two semesters, yet BALANCE was very important. Knowing when to and when not to go out is major. I saw people get totally consumed by the party scene and things didn’t end well for them. Yes, HAVE FUN. Go out and meet people, try new things, open your mind, but at the same time be careful. You will get to learn your limits. College is not just about seriousness. Education is important but once in a while we all need to take a little stress off.

Fourth, BEING AWAY FROM HOME. 

Being away from home is a challenge all on its own. It can get lonely but if you go out there and make friends you will be fine. Make sure to always find a positive outlet to just let go of anything that may be bothering you. At times you will be feel alone, sad and nostalgic but don’t let it consume you. YOU are where you are for a reason. Never let go of that.

Another note I will give you is MAKE SURE YOU KNOW HOW TO DO LAUNDRY.  I saw some pretty funny things happen just because people didn’t know how to do it and you don’t want to be that person. Oh, and the freshman 15 is an actual thing, although at Texas State every day is leg day so be prepared for that. You may or may not get used to running up a hill at 9:05 in the morning when you are late to class. Being away from home was one of the best decisions I made so I hope that when you go through it, it’s as good as it was for me.

Fifth, FRIENDS, FRIENDS, FRIENDS. 

I think one of the best things that happened to me these last two semesters was meeting such amazing people. From my hall council E-Board members to meeting one of my best friends is just exactly what I needed. They are the best thing I had and I love them for that. I don’t think I could have made them out alive without them. So to everyone I got to know these last two semesters THANK YOU! You are the reason I made it through and I hope I made an equal impact on your life. See, over the course of the years I have found that it is not about where you are, it’s about who you are with that really counts. So when you decide to make friends, keep in mind that they can and will become a huge part of your experience and that hanging around toxic people can hurt you. Always be open to making new and different friendships because the more you know, the better you can be.

Sixth, FUTURE, FUTURE, FUTURE. 

When you go into college one of the main question you will encounter is WHAT IS YOUR MAJOR? or WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WHEN YOU FINISH COLLEGE? Now let me tell you something. When I was in high school I thought I knew exactly what I needed and wanted to do with the rest of my life. That changed my junior year when I fell in love with theatre.  See, before I used to be so set on doing my pre-med requirements and becoming a doctor, but I found that in a way that wasn’t for me. So I changed my major. It is one of the best decisions I have made for myself because I love what I am going into. Besides, I am currently 19 years old and I don’t think I should have my life figured out step by step just yet. If you are a junior or senior in high school or even if you’re in college already, think about it. I decided to change because I realized that my life was going in a different direction. In a few years from now, I have no idea what I will be doing and the thought is scary but at the same time comforting. I know that when I finish college I will be doing something I love and at that point it won’t be a job. It’s my passion, it’s my life, it’s theatre. As YOU make the big decision as to what you want to do with your life, look at everything. Picture yourself 20, maybe even 30 years from now and try to see if you can picture yourself doing what it is you are choosing. If that’s the case, then go ahead. No matter what people tell you, or what society tells you, DO IT.  It’s your life and as cliche as it sounds, following your dreams should be your main priority. If you are any bit like me then you will find that there is a certain beauty to the unknown.

I have done it. I did it. It might not have turned out exactly how I planned but I loved every step of the way. With this post I say goodbye to my freshman year of college. Yet, all the memories and the friendships I have made go with me and they will always remain. So as you go out there and start your first, second, etc. year of college I urge you to EXPLORE, LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE, HURT, EXPERIENCE, but most of all, LEARN. Make sure you learn everything that is put in front of you. Doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad, knowledge is power. I can promise you it will come in handy at some point. Now, always remember :

“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

I am proud to have become a BOBCAT because you know BOBCATS are pretty amazing.

Thank you for this first and awesome year,TEXAS STATE.

I look forward for rest of them because they can only get better from here.

Much love,

Astrid A. Rangel ❤🐾

Freshman year = COMPLETE

by Alexus Moreno

Freshman year of college was such a fun experience. The good … the bad … it is all something I will remember forever. Looking back, it’s so weird to see how much has changed since high school. I wouldn’t even know where to begin. But I can tell you this. College (especially the first year) could be the best or the worst experience. It all depends on you (as if you didn’t have enough pressure already). But I offer this advice … not only for incoming freshmen but for all college students:

Your college years are what you make of them.

Your college years are what you make of them.

  1. Make new friends. I’ve mentioned many times before how easy it is to feel lonely. So make friends and keep them around. They will help you so much.
  2. Know your priorities. It’s easy to fall off track and avoid studying and doing work. Seriously, the  easiest thing in the world. Just remember, above all else, you are here to get an education.
  3. Get to know your professors. Go to their office hours and establish a good relationship with them. It helps … I promise you.
  4. Make your dorm as homey and comfortable as possible … you’ll be there a lot.
  5. Get to know your roommate! Your roommate could be your best friend or your worst enemy … either way, you will be stuck together for a whole semester or two. I was fortunate enough to become extremely great friends with my roommate … Nan … love yah, gurl!
  6. Go out! Don’t stay in your dorm or go home every weekend. Get dressed up, go to gatherings, meet new people, and make memories … and of course stay safe through it all.
  7. Don’t forget about your parents … they will miss you … give them a call and let them know you love them every once in awhile [:
  8. Stay active … freshmen 15 is waiting for you.
  9. Use as many resources as the school has to offer. They are there for your benefit.
  10. Lastly … don’t be afraid to take all the chances and opportunities that are presented to you. Great things can come out of them.

I can honestly say Texas State has offered me so much and I am very grateful to have shared my experiences with everyone reading! I want to thank all my friends I have made here … Nan, Chance, Key, Conner, Carley, Alize, Christi, Brandon, Andrew, Josh, Puga, Joseph, Skipp and Austin. YOU GUYS ARE THE BEE’S KNEES and have made such a big impact on my life … I love every single one of y’all. To all future Bobcats … enjoy your summer because you are in for a ride.

The finals are here, the finals are here!

by Astrid Rangel

BOBCATS, FINALS ARE HERE!

Get ready for stress-induced comas, sleepless nights, coffee and energy drink days. I should be feeling stressed and worried but all I can think about right now is I DID IT! I went through a whoooooole year of college and YOU did too! Whoever it is that is reading this, if you are about to finish your spring semester, you know what? I AM PROUD OF YOU.  Getting through something like your first year of college is a huge accomplishment.  I know that for me it is.  When I decided to leave my hometown, a lot of people thought I would be back as soon as you can change your underwear but I am not going back, neither today nor next semester.  I am committed to proving people wrong and finishing this semester of college is one step closer.

So if you are getting ready for finals and you can’t take it anymore remember, that you already did it once, twice, three times. It will be okay, and you will get through this one last time. Overall it has been a great year, not just for me but I’m sure for everyone as well. I got to learn a lot of new things, met really great people and I have made memories that I will never forget. Challenges will always pop up. What matters is the faith you put in yourself and all that you do. I think we sometime forget to put faith into what we do when it can be a huge deal-changer.  I have put a lot of faith into what I do and it worked out more than alright.

I can’t get through this post without getting emotional. Finals are here and so is the end of this fantastic year at Texas State. I do believe I couldn’t have made it through without a lot of the people that have come into my life. It was hard, I am not going to downplay it because there is no way of downplaying something like this. There were many times where I questioned why or how in general but I am sure there is something bigger than this. I kind of still am as I go through finals once again.

So, as you go through finals, and get stressed, think about summer coming.  Think of days by the pool, think of those sunny hot days you will get to spend laying around doing nothing. You soon will have a stress-free environment around you and that should make you really happy, I know it makes me more than excited to spend this summer visiting my family and friends back home. I also know that all this hard work we are putting into this will soon pay off.  We have decided to do more with our lives and whether you are a biology, history, math, theater, art, music, dance major, what we are doing is worth every single minute of our lives.

On that note, I will leave you, because if you are any bit like me, I know you are reading this to procrastinate and you should probably be studying for something.  So now, go on study because FINALS ARE HERE.

Good luck, Bobcats! 😺❤

Six things I wish I had known before college

by Alexus Moreno

Now that the semester is wrapping up, here are some things I wish I had known before starting college.

  1. Buying textbooks before classes start may not always be a good idea.
    Sometimes professors will list two or even five different textbooks in an e-mail and send it out to everyone. However, you probably will not use all of them. While this does not apply to all professors, it’s definitely something I have experienced. I spent $60 renting a textbook I opened once. Textbooks costs a good chunk of money, so be 100% sure you will open them more than five times before you buy. Waiting it out is a good idea unless your professor makes a huge deal about it beforehand.
  2. Professors are not going to baby you about homework.
    Coming into college, I knew that professors would be much different than high school teachers and the classes would be more rigorous, but I didn’t know how much different. You are an adult now, so you are treated like one (which is refreshing…but new). Professors will mention a homework assignment that is due on a certain date or a quiz you might be having and that will be the only and last time they will mention it. It’s up to you to keep track.
  3. You are going to feel lonely at times.
    You are away from home surrounded by hundreds of people you don’t know. It’s easy to feel lonely. You’ll meet people, but sometimes you’ll feel lonely even in a group. It’s not anything to feel frightened by…I guarantee you everyone has felt like that at one point or another, it’s just how it is. Embrace the independence at times but also remember you aren’t alone.
  4. Freshman 15 is a thing.
    At least, it can be…it’s SOOOOO easy to sit in your dorm and do absolutely nothing. No one is telling you to get up or what to do. I am guilty of getting bored and just eating. Food is literally 30 seconds away from you on campus so eating a lot is common. So STAY ACTIVE!
  5. The temptation is real.
    It’s college, people! Your friends and you yourself are going to want to have fun and have the full college experience. You’ll want to go to parties and try new stuff and see what all the other folks are doing. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that…I say live it to the fullest and make memories. However, do not do anything you are uncomfortable with, no matter how tempted you may be. Make choices you won’t regret.
  6. Lastly, freshman year will fly by.
    This year has gone by SO fast, I can’t believe it. And it’s so sad, because I’ve had the time of my life here. I’ve met so many amazing people who are now my closest friends and I’ve made the best memories. Time goes by so fast…so have as much fun as you can and work hard. I cannot wait to see what the next three years have in store for me.

Quitting my job!

by Astrid Rangel

Balancing finances with academics is challenging. Setting your priorities puts it all into perspective.

Balancing finances with academics is challenging. Setting your priorities puts it all into perspective.

Monday, April 13, 2015 was my last day of work! Quitting was one of the hardest things I have done this semester. I had been working for six months, but I decided to quit my job for the sake of school. See, I never thought things would get this challenging.

People have asked me why I decided to quit, making comments from, “Oh, so, you can’t take the pressure” to “You have a good head on your shoulders.” Yet to me it feels nothing like those two. When they asked me “Why are you quitting your job?” I didn’t even have to think about it. Here’s why: I got a job because I am putting myself through college. So the reason for my job is school. Now, since I started working, it became kind of one of my main things to do, yet it isn’t. School should be my priority. So I made the decision so quit my job because if my school work is not up to where it needs to be or where I want it to be, then there is no use in me having a job.

I know there is so much I want to do with my life, not just work for the rest of my life in a minimum-wage job. I have dreams and aspirations. I feel like sometimes people get caught up with the money they are getting week by week. I don’t want to get caught up in that, and I don’t think anyone else should. Once you complete your education, yes, get caught up in the money doing what you love, but right now it is not the thing for me.

I will finish this semester and try to get my grades where they should be, because I know I can do so much better than I am doing. If you are going through something similar, all I can tell you is to take a step back. Look at your situation and remind yourself why you started all of this in the first place. Go back to who you want to be and how you are going to get there.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I loved the money and all, but I love my future more. Also, I will go back to my job next semester because I do need the money. Yet, I’ll be okay for now and I am sure you will be too.

On another note, SCHOOL IS ALMOST OVER, BOBCATS. I wish you all luck on your final tests and finals.

Stay awesome, Bobcats. Much love!❤

 

[photo by Mary Crandall/flickr.com]

Tighten up and let loose

Managing stress is a huge part of your success.

Managing stress is a huge part of your success. Photo credit to “bottled_void” on flickr.com.

by Victoria Nguyen

With the semester coming to an end, I can already feel the stress building up, as I’m sure y’all are too. Throughout the semester, I’ve struggled to keep my sanity and deal with deadlines and overall life, but I have noticed I’ve gotten better at keeping things together during stressful times. There are only a few weeks of class left before the countdown to finals and all chaos breaks out all across campus. Hopefully I’ll be able to share some tips to keep your sanity and make the last few weeks as calm as possible.

I’ve always had a problem with procrastination, and unfortunately I don’t see it ever going away. Honestly, school work has always come easy to me growing up, and I could always bust out an exceptional assignment at the last minute without much planning or preparation. However, college is a completely different story and requires planning, and sometimes pre-planning. Continue reading

Dream job for the day

by Nicholas Laughlin

One of my favorite things about Texas State is the location. We are a quick 30-minute drive to Austin, and about 45 minutes to San Antonio (all depending on traffic, of course). With that, there are so many opportunities for me as a broadcast journalism major, just north and south of our campus.Processed with VSCOcam with b3 preset

I am currently enrolled in Careers In Media. For this class, I am required to do a job shadow. This was something I was really excited about because I have always wanted to see a journalist in his or her element. I am a huge fan of KUT, The Texas Tribune, and most Austin media (television and other news outlets). I decided to go out on a limb and e-mail KUT about a chance to job shadow with someone in the newsroom. After a couple of weeks of waiting, I got an e-mail from the “Morning Edition” host, Jennifer Stayton, who was excited for me to come down to the station and follow her for the day.

I was at KUT almost all day. I arrived at 8 a.m. to sit in on the first hour of “Morning Edition,” then attended the 9 a.m. news meeting. After that I got to tour the studio, which is relatively new and very nice; listen in on “Texas Standard,” a program that broadcasts all over the state; and go out into the field with a reporter.

I was nervous, of course, because I wasn’t actually sure what I was getting into. Once I sat in the studio and watched Ms. Stayton anchor the news, I realized it was something I could see myself doing. Everyone I met was extremely nice and wanted me get the most out of my experience. I got to take part in a lot of different aspects of KUT.

I learned a lot of this experience. It was an awesome opportunity to get to be a broadcast journalist for the day. In the six hours I was there, I learned a lot about the field of radio journalism, and I am so glad that I had the opportunity to do so!