Posts by Pratha
- Being Handicapped on Campus on April 19th, 2013
I’ve had the unfortunate opportunity of being on crutches for about a month because of multiple stress fractures in my foot (caused by chronic running, of course). And I’d like to share with you guys my experiences, because these things I’ve experienced might be appealing to some of you, mostly those of you who are either very prone to serious injury, or are legally handicapped. I’ll walk you, briefly, through my experience:
1. Injury occurred.
2. Doctors were seen; Then MRIs were taken at the Stony Brook Hospital. It was very straightforward, easy to make an appointment at the hospital, and an overall good experience (but really, who can say getting injured is a good experience?)
3. Diagnosis; made an appointment and was officially put in a boot and on crutches. Friends were useful in driving me around to my doctors appointments! (I do have my own car, but note, this injury is on my driving foot so I didn’t want to risk making it worse by driving myself!)
4. Went to the Disability Services Office, to get a handicapped parking permit. I needed to show them the doctor’s note and tell them my license plate number, then they made a handy-dandy temporary permit that lasts for 4 weeks.
5. Parking in certain areas on campus (such as near the SAC or the Library) can be difficult because the handicapped spots are almost all being used. But if you get there early enough before your class time, there will probably be an open spot (from my experiences). I am primarily parking at the Life Sciences Building Lot, which is very close to all of my classes, and I always find spots there. So yes, there are enough handicapped parking spots.
6) One thing I found interesting, and somewhat ironic, was that if all the handicapped spots are taken in a parking lot, and you park in a non-handicapped spot that is for faculty/staff/a zone you don’t have a specific permit for (see parking website), you CAN be ticketed. My friend and I were rather discombobulated by this rule so we looked it up online and found that it does follow NY state law, so it’s not like SBU made this rule up. It’s important to know that Stony Brook Parking Enforcement is very diligent and is always ready to ticket and/or tow a car that is parked in a handicapped spot illegally.
7) If you don’t have a car, the Disability Services Office offers a transportation service that can take you from your dorm, to your class building, to another class building, and back to your dorm, according to a schedule you submit to them. This service is separate from the SB Transit buses because these run only for students with disabilities. This would be really useful if I were in a wheel chair, or incapable of driving with my injured foot.
There is a student club called Students Taking Aim at Challenges, which is specifically for students with disabilities to join together, advocate for their needs, and potentially change campus policies!
9) Going around campus: Crutching around campus is actually quite a workout. I try my hardest to minimize excessive crutching around campus. This is a big campus. It was hard the first week, but it’s gotten much easier. Students are generally courteous and hold doors for you, offer to press elevator buttons for you, and if you have to take the stairs because of a broken elevator, some will offer to help you up or down the stairs. People are nice! Professors too. They are very understanding if you have to come to class late every day because your other class was somewhat far. (it takes me about 12 minutes to go from one building to another on crutches, whereas it used to take only 7 minutes–the time in between two classes is typically 10 minutes).
In conclusion, I think being on crutches really hasn’t been that bad. The only thing I’ve really “hated” is that I haven’t gone to the gym in almost a month, because well, I can’t really do many exercises with a boot on… But in one week and about 10 hours, I will be back in the gym. and I can’t wait to get back into my routine.
I hope this helps at least one of you guys reading this,
- Mascot Madness! on April 4th, 2013
This will be a really quick post!
Basically, Stony Brook’s Mascot, Wolfie the Seawolf, has made it all the way to the finals in SUNY’s Mascot Madness Contest! It ends in just a few hours and we need your help!
Please click the link below and vote for Wolfie! There is also information about Wolfie if you’re interested
Remember, voting ends at noon today!
- What is the WISE Program? on March 30th, 2013
(Yes, I followed the title trend of the last few bloggers’ posts!)
I’m in the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) Program here at SBU. The way I describe it on my resume is “an honors program for high-achieving women”, which is the gist of it. Basically selection into the WISE program means that you qualified, and the university has high hopes for you in the STEM fields. (STEM= Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). The main requirements you must fulfill during your years at Stony Brook are a to take a few WISE classes, maintain a good GPA, and attend at least 3 events per semester. These events are fun and typically informative… past events include: movie nights, research panels, resume readings, ice skating in NYC, and manymany more!
The WISE program has a number of benefits; a community feeling, mentoring, priority-registration, scholarship opportunities, and the potential for good networking connections. During freshman year, WISE houses all of their members in Gray College in Mendelsohn Quad. (Other students live there too, but almost all of the WISE freshman are housed there, too). Having all of these familiar faces in one place is a very welcoming environment because it creates a sense of community. This campus is large, and it can be hard in the first semester to come out of your shell, so having a close group of friends is a good thing to have.
Mentoring, a requirement for all freshmen, is probably the second best thing being in WISE has done for me. A group of 4-6 freshman meet with an upperclassman WISE student of the same major for two hours twice a week. This mentoring time is used for homework help and discussing how to handle situations with a roommate/classmate/significant other. Mentoring was amazing for me because that’s how I met my roommate! Actually I met her the first time at the WISE orientation session in the summer before freshman year, but magically we were in the same mentoring group and became closer friends and eventually roommates.
Priority-registration is the most amazing perk of being in WISE. I have never been locked out of registering for a class, while my non-WISE friends have this occur on a regular basis. Getting into the right classes is important for your overall course sequence, especially for STEM majors because everything is prerequisite for another class you take later.
WISE typically sends out emails and posts flyers and information about scholarships we can apply to, which is always useful because who doesn’t want a little help financially?!
Networking, networking, networking. It’s a word you’ll hate at the beginning, but love later on. Freshman year, you’ll attend events that are aimed at helping you learn to network, but there’s really recipe on how to do it, you just have to jump in and do it. I’m finally in that stage where I’ve understood how to network as well as how to use those contacts as inside connections to pass off my resume and get more opportunities. WISE has various events throughout the year where you can network with alumni who are now working, and making those connections can help you out a lot in the future! (There are also alumni networking events for non-WISE students hosted by the Career Center or student clubs on campus, so if you’re not in WISE you still get this kind of an opportunity).
One perk I haven’t taken advantage of is the connection of WISE with Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship (SULI) at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL). This SULI program is open everyone, but they set aside 2 or 3 spots just for WISE students! One of my friends participated in this, and she absolutely loved it. I tried to get you guys a link, but the BNL website is down at the moment. If you want to find out more about the SULI program, here’s the general info from the Department of Energy.
I hope this helps you!
- Spring Break! (almost…) on March 15th, 2013
At 11 AM tomorrow, I will officially be on Spring Break!
Honestly, I don’t even remember what I did freshman year. (No, it wasn’t like I was having “too much fun to remember” but I think I just went back home, and had a relaxing break.) Last year, I had a blast going to Camp Bob in South Carolina with the Crew Team! It was so much fun getting 3 workouts a day and being with the team 24/7, literally.
This year, I’m going back home to MA but this time, I’m bringing home one of my best friends! She’s originally from California, and she’s graduating this year. We have an entire list of places we want to go…one of them is the MA Admitted Student Reception Dinner! SO if you’re in the area and you were invited, make sure to RSVP! We’d love to talk to you guys about our experiences here at SBU, and pass on any advice and knowledge that will help you decide if SBU is right for you! I’m looking forward to meeting you guys
ps. Happy Pi Day!
- OOSSA’s Trip to NYC and The Lion King! on March 3rd, 2013
Yesterday, a total of 30 members of the Out-of-State Student Association went on a trip to the city to see the Lion King on Broadway! It was a lot of fun, and very low cost to the students! Only $12 for each student! This is just one of the many awesome things OOSSA does throughout the year, with a lot of financial help from the Admissions Department to get it so low cost! We split up into smaller groups, and had at least one eboard member lead each group. One group went shopping on 5th Ave, another went to Chelsea to see art galleries, and my group wanted to see Times Square! After spending time in the city, we met up outside of the theater. Everyone really enjoyed the show, and for most of them, this was their first Broadway experience. The Lion King is well-known for the incredible costumes, musical numbers, and the overall amazing experience.
OOSSA plans to do a NYC/Broadway trip at least once a year, with the hope that we can get a trip in for every semester in the future. We are going to try to get in another trip to the city this semester, to visit some of the famous museums.
OOSSA is just one of the 300+ clubs on campus that you can join, and each one holds different wonderful events that everyone should try!
- Study Abroad? on February 14th, 2013
For the past year, I’ve really wanted to study abroad. But I waited much too long to actually do it. Being an engineering major, I have to take my major courses in a pretty strict sequence, and if I were to go abroad for a semester, I would end up blocking myself out of one or more classes because I’d have missed out on a prerequisite. Only recently did I realize that I could have, and should have, done a winter or summer study abroad program during my first two years here. I think it would have been a really good option to get that outside world exposure and different experience, but I didn’t know about the possibility of winter and summer programs like that.
Why do I think it’s too late for me to do one now? Because now I have to start focusing on getting an internship for this summer, look into grad schools over the next winter break, and the laundry list goes on as I’ll get closer to graduation next year.
Study Abroad programs are great because they let you experience other parts of the world, new cultures, and new educational practices. You also get to make new friends from around the world! My best friend is almost half way across the world in Jordan right now. I read the blogs she writes, and I can’t believe how amazing her travels have been so far.
So take this from me, don’t miss out on study abroad! Find out all the information as a freshman and figure out how to get it to fit into your busy class schedule!
Here’s the link to the Stony Brook Study Abroad Program Website: http://www.stonybrook.edu/studyabroad/
- Tough Decisions on January 30th, 2013
Over the next few weeks you guys will be making some tough decisions, and so will I. But of course they are drastically different. Your choices are more along the lines of: “What college should I go to? What major should I pick? What kind of housing do I want? Do I want to go to the same school as my best friends/boyfriend/girlfriend?”
My options are: to continue rowing OR to train for my marathon without crew, earn money doing a job I really love, and maintain a good sleep schedule. I know this sounds like an easy choice; obviously if there were no emotional strings attached to crew, it would truly be easier to to accomplish everything else without having to wake up so early and practice everyday. But alas, there are always roadblocks, and mine is my passion for the sport.
Before I continue on, I just want to say that I know your decisions are hard, I’ve been there. But whatever decision you make, you might need to take a leap of faith and believe in yourself, and know that wherever you go off to in the fall, doesn’t mean you’re stuck there.
In a way, I feel like if I quit crew for this semester, I’ll be opening up a whole new chapter in my life…almost like what you do after a break-up, which sounds like a ridiculous comparison, but that’s just how strong the bonds are between the people on this team. On the other hand, if I continue, I might make my semester extra hard, and I’d be preventing myself from earning some good money–every college student could use some more money! I know I have to think about this more, and I’m really on the imaginary line dividing what I wanna do from what would be easier, but it’s just not a simple decision.
These kinds of life-changing decisions are always hard to make, but once you make them you have to be completely on board. No regrets, but being scared and worried is totally okay. Whatever happens is for the best, even if it doesn’t feel that way right now.
Go ahead, be like Ted Mosby, take out your yellow legal pad and make a Pros and Cons list.
Until next time, Happy Pondering!
- Winter Break! on December 21st, 2012
Wow! It’s been almost a whole month since I last blogged. Sorry guys! I’ve been very busy with OOSSA stuff and finals! Even now when the semester is over, finals are over, and I’m back home in MA, the work continues.
Winter break is the opportune time to start applying for summer positions, whether it be research programs or internships. (Right now, I have 5 tabs open, each containing information about different summer programs I want to apply to, but here I am procrastinating work by blogging about it). Actually what I put in parenthesis is a pretty important topic, more on that later. During finals week, my fabulous OOSSA VP organized an event at the Career Center where the director, Marianna Savoca, talked to us about summer internships and how to get ahead. We reviewed resumes and even looked at online e-portfolios! If you haven’t heard about them yet, it’s really something to look into making! (I will be making mine over the next few weeks!) Here’s one that I really like, it’s actually one of my friend’s. Another great online networking tool is Linked-in, again I have not yet made mine, but I will shortly!
Back to the other thing I brought up; procrastinating some work by doing other work. It’s actually a really good way to get things done. Like right now, for example, I know that I should be writing essays about why I want certain research positions, or why I should be given a certain scholarship, but instead I’m finally cracking down and blogging- something I’ve been meaning to do for a couple weeks. It’s a skill I’ve learned over my years in college; I like to call it productive procrastinating.
All of you high schoolers who are waiting and waiting anxiously for college decisions, don’t worry it’l come when it comes. Don’t let it ruin your vacation. And when family members ask you what schools you’ve applied to, don’t feel obligated to tell them. I know when I was a senior, I didn’t want to tell anyone where I applied out of fear of being rejected from the school and having to tell them. Just brush it off and say, “I’m still waiting to hear back from the schools I applied to, but until then I don’t really want to talk about it.” They’ll back off when they see you really don’t want to discuss it further. Enjoy your winter break!
- Online Chats! on November 28th, 2012
Hey Prospective Students!
Did you know about our online chats? The undergraduate admissions department holds online text chats for everyone every once in a while! The one coming up on December 4th, is geared toward out of state students! We know it can be hard to come all the way over to NY to visit us, so hop online for a short time and ask us questions! There will be students as well as administrative people and collectively we can answer almost any question you have!
The website for chat updates, and to register and log on is: http://www.stonybrook.edu/ugadmissions/blogs/chat.shtml
At this link you can also see archived chats and read what students have asked in the past.
I hope to chat with you!
- Post-Hurricane Sandy Update! on October 31st, 2012
Although other parts of Long Island were devastatingly hit, Stony Brook didn’t get hurt too badly in the hurricane! Basically we lost power for less than an hour, lost internet for about a half a day, and verizon wireless customers were without cell service for about a day. (I have verizon, and that was the LONGEST day ever….). There were also some trees down in the neighborhoods close-by, as well as lots of power outages in those areas. The flooding mostly happened on the Southern side of the island.
These past few days off from classes really allowed my suite-mates and I to do some bonding, enjoy ourselves, and not think about studying! As soon as the internet was back on, the youtube-ing began, and we stumbled upon some really good finds!
As it turns out, Stony Brook students know how to have fun and make silly videos. Here’s the videos, enjoy!
I hope you guys didn’t get hit too badly!