5 Things You Shouldn’t Do in College

As a sophomore, I am well aware that I am not as experienced of a college student as seniors and juniors, but I think I already figured out things you should and shouldn’t do in college.

  1. The first thing you shouldn’t do is watch YouTube or Netflix all day. I think everyday has had those days where they spend all day on their bed binge-watching Netflix. I had days where I have to study and finish homework or I’ll get behind. But then I decide to take a break and then this happens.

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Then I realize 6 hours has passed and I haven’t done any work. One tip can be to watch TV after you finish all your work or spend a well deserved Friday catching up on TV.

 

2) Next, you shouldn’t think you can finish all your math homework in one day.

Since I am a math major, this tip is specifically geared towards math majors, but it honestly applies to any field of study. With math and science specifically, I found that it can be exhausting finishing several problem sets in one day. With humanities (to be fair, I haven’t taken a lot of humanities courses), I found it was hard to finish all my reading if I started it the night before. I just didn’t absorb any of the reading and lost a night of sleep. Half the time I actually finish my work the other half I’m like this …

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3) You shouldn’t overextend yourself

Yes, grades are important, but so is maintaining friends, joining clubs, working, sleeping, maintaining good mental health, etc. From my experience, I wanted to maintain all of them but it didn’t work. I ended up ruining my GPA which I still need to recover from.

Basically what I am saying is to find a balance between everything you want to do. If you are taking 20 credits, it would be a good idea to go easy on clubs and work. If you have 14 credits, then you can go out more or work more etc.

Also remember that your mental health is very important. It’s important to try to keep yourself calm and to be able to handle stress. I can’t stress this fact enough

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This just perfectly captures my point

4) Also you shouldn’t not exercise

Even though this is a double negative, basically I’m saying to always exercise and try not to be lazy about this. Exercise is important to keep a smart mind, keep your body healthy, and help yourself maintain a positive image of yourself.

It’s amazing how much exercise impacts the brain and the improved academic performance that follows. http://www.nature.com/nrn/journal/v9/n1/box/nrn2298_BX1.html?foxtrotcallback=true

 

5) You shouldn’t keep junk food with you all the time.

Of course it’s okay to eat junk food every once in awhile. But it’s still important to get your fruits and vegetables in. Your body is like a car. If you fill it with proper fuel, then it will run efficiently and smoothly.

In addition, healthier food  may not taste good and may be hard to access (believe me I went to the dining halls), but it’s possible, and you will notice the difference over time.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/sns-health-nutrition-better-grades-story.html

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Wanna Get Fit?

So obviously college is a time of new life changes that I was personally ready and not ready for at the same time. I was expecting to not get enough sleep and I was expecting a lot of stress. I was even expecting to eat more unhealthy food than I usually do. But what I wasn’t expecting was how much of a toll this would take on my body. I definitely gained more weight than I wanted to but it was hard to start exercising regularly in the middle of the semester.

I obviously don’t want to gain the freshmen 15 again during my second year. In addition, there are many benefits to exercise that improves productivity and learning. I been using the summer to get fit and try to build up exercise habits that will carry on to next semester. So here a some of the habits that I have been doing over the summer.

  • Waking up early and going to the gym
    • Whenever I go to the gym, I tend to feel a little bit insecure going to the gym because there are always so many guys (and some girls) who know how to use the equipment and knows what they are doing.
    • So I found that going to the gym in the morning (if I don’t have morning classes), is nice because there is not that many people there and I feel less insecure. In addition, I feel great afterword and feel ready to study and take on the day.
  • Doing cardio and weights
    • I used to go only on the elliptical because I was always just focused on losing weight. However going to the elliptical gets really boring especially if there is nothing good on the TV. So I try to do weights to change up my fitness routine.
    • This makes working out more fun and more rewarding afterword.
  • Getting 7 hours of sleep
    • Obviously during college, getting 7 hours of sleep can be difficult. But sleeping honestly helps me stay alert, aware and happy throughout the day.
  • Eating more fruits/vegetables and protein
    • My diet usually consists of cereal for breakfast, rice for lunch and dinner, and some random thing in the kitchen for snack. But lately I have been trying to eat much more vegetables and fruits for all my meals and some protein for energy. And surprisingly I have not been getting hungry. Ever since I started this, I have been feeling very fresh and healthy.
  • Listening to body
    • Your diet is so important to your mental and physical health. It’s important to fuel your body and mind with the right products to live healthy, to be productive and to feel happy.
    • Personally, my body doesn’t digest carbs or gluten very well which is the main reason why I started eating more fruits and vegetables. I also found that when I start eating a lot of junk food, I have been feeling very ‘gross’ the next day. The sugar makes me feel happy in the moment but not overall.
    • So when I am presented with options either at the dining hall, students centers, or stores, I try to remember this when I want to avoid the tempting ice cream and cookies and pizza.

While it’s unrealistic to do everything when the school year begins I definitely want to be healthier and stay fit during next semester. It is important to treat your body right because it can have a major effect on your emotions, your work, and obviously your health. So try to hit the gym every once in awhile and try to makes healthier choices for yourself.

29 Things to do Over the Summer

So buy know we got all our summer plans. Some people are interning, volunteering, and traveling. But there are those days where we have absolutely nothing to do. So here is a list of things to do on those days.

  1. Color in a Coloring Book: This has shown to be very relaxing and can be even fun
  2. Read a new Book: Try getting inspiration somewhere or just to do it for fun
  3. Or reread an old book: So I love rereading Harry Potter books so this is always an option
  4. Catch up with Friends by : It’s great to see old high school friends and just catch up
  5. Going to the Park : You can have a picnic or play with a frisbee or just sit and soak up the sun
  6. Or to a Museum: There are many places that have student discounts
  7. Or New York City: There are many other things that are available in NYC in addition to the museums
  8. Go shopping: It’s always nice to have an updated wardrobe or just browse
  9. Go to Six Flags: Six Flags can be so much fun and definitely takes up an entire day. This is what I do with my friends.
  10. Do some crafts: That can also be therapeutic and relaxing
  11. Try to do Some Writing: Again relaxing and a good way to get your thoughts out
  12. Catch up on Netflix: So while I’m not a Netflix person, it’s nice to just binge watch your favorite show
  13. Sleep: This speaks for itself
  14. Go to the Gym: So a nice way to get rid of the Freshmen 15 (even if you are not a freshmen) or just a way to stay fit
  15. Or Biking: So this could be another adventure
  16. Or Hiking; If there are any hiking trails nearby then why not?
  17. Try Yoga: Yoga is believed to reduce stress and soothe the mind so why not try it
  18. Try Meditation: It can be nice to think absolutely nothing
  19. Get Organized for Next School Year: Organization and planning is always good
  20. Try Cooking: It’s a good skill to have an why not?
  21. Listen to Podcasts: It’s an easy way to learn more about a topic and relax.
  22. Spend Time with Family: It’s hard to see them throughout the year.
  23. Lie in Bed and listen to music: Seems like an easy way to relax
  24. Maybe put on a face pack: It can feel refreshing afterword.
  25. Search for textbooks: If you know your textbooks you might as well by them now
  26. Start reading them: You might as well read/skim the content so you have an idea when classes start.
  27. Start a new habit: Maybe go to the gym in the morning or wake up at 6 am.
  28. Read inspiring blogs: Stay motivated and productive throughout the school year.
  29. Read about the profession you want to go to

There are so many things that we can do over summer. And we have 4 months of summer vacation. So instead of watching youtube all summer, we might as well.

Thank you Mom

Even though Mother’s Day was last Sunday, I wanted to make a blog post to pay tribute to my mom and all other moms out there. My mom, like so many other moms, works so hard each and every day to provide what she can for my brother and I. I try to remember and honor that every single day. So here it goes.


Dear Mom,

Thank you for all the sacrifices you make. I know that I am not the easiest daughter to have, but you have always loved me despite all of my flaws. You gave up all of your dreams of getting an education when I was born and made sure that I got what you never had. It is always a humbling reminder that many women in this world don’t have access to a quality education and that I should work hard for mine. For that, I am truly grateful that I am going to Rutgers and that I have an education.

Thank you for always listening to me. You have showed me what it means to be open-minded, empathetic, and strong.

Thank you for all the skills and lessons you taught me.  Despite all the stress and struggles that you go through, you take each day one at a time, which is what I admire about you. I also admire how you always put your family’s needs before your own. You also showed me that it is better to change that to just say that you will change. You always remind me that if I make a promise or a goal,  I have to work and commit to that goal. The biggest lesson that you taught me is to have my priorities in check, some thing that I am still learning each and every day.

Thank you for supporting my passions. When I wanted to be in the school orchestra, you bought me a violin. When I became interested in photography, you bought me a camera. When I wanted to learn how to sing, you took me to a summer workshop. When I wanted to learn how to dance, you took me to a teacher. You have always supported everything that I wanted to do, but also made sure that I was practical in my endeavors, which is what I admire about you. I will never forget this.

Thank you never giving up on me. I will admit that I get distracted and lose focus a lot when I study. I know that I don’t always instill the utmost confidence in you and I will work on changing that.

And finally thank you for being my mother. Words can’t describe how grateful I am. I love you so much.

Love

Akhila
Even though Mother’s Day is once a year, our moms do so much for us daily, so it is important to be grateful every day. We should honor that every day. So be sure to honor your mother and any other important women in your life today.

Why Not

Why Not? This is the question I asked myself when I came to Rutgers. In middle and high school, I was very shy and I didn’t get involved much, which I now regret. I decided that when I entered college, I was going to say “why not” when I join a club, or think about a club, or go to an event. Now that the semester is almost over, I’m looking back at all that I did this semester and I don’t regret any aspect of my first year (although it would be nice if my GPA was higher).

So for me, the first clubs I joined were RHA and RUPA. During my time at both, I met the most amazing people who are so motivated and so much fun to be around. Through RUPA, I got to volunteer at Winter Wishes, I made origami swans, and did the Day of Dance (I learned a Bollywood dance from an accomplished choreographer). And nfor RHA, I won the presidency for Jameson Hall next year. (Jameson is DRC dorms on Cook/ Douglass which includes Honors housing for SAS) and I get to represent my favorite hall on campus.

In addition, I also joined the First Year Fellowship which is within the Leadership and Experiential Learning Department. I had an amazing experience in this department, and I got to meet even more motivated students as we work on our social change project and learn what it means to be a leader. As part of the FYF, we have to collect 15 points by going to various events which have all been so interesting. Some experiences I had was catapulting mushrooms, minute to win it activities, and got to meet Viral Internet Personal.

And as part of the Honor Program, I got to be an Honors Blogger and Honors Ambassador. These both have been amazing because I get to share my experiences with other people, which have been truly amazing.

Those are the organizations that I have been a part of. But I also went to so many events because I wanted to try everything. I went to see “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” for free which was amazing (I’m an insane Harry Potter nerd). As part of RHA , I went to Leadership Development Day which was amazing. There I got to learn more about how to be a better leader, and I specifically learned how to incorporate service into our events. I also got to meet Miss Jersey 2016 which was an honor. And the centerpieces were so cute.

Through the SAS Honors Program, I got to go to Museum of Sex, which was definitely something I would never do. The overall experience was so much fun, and I got to bounce on giant boobs which was an experience I thought I would never have. But I had fun that day, which is what was important.

I also got to go to Holi which is hosted by Rutgers Hindu Council and Inspiring South Asian Youth. While I have been to Holi before, I had so much fun with my friends with so many different colors all over face and dancing everywhere.

This is a small list of everything I have done on campus. It has been an amazing year and it went by so fast I believe that college is what you make it. If you make an effort to have fun then it will be the best 4 years of your life (or so everyone says).

7 Things I learned as a Math Major minus all the math

Clearly I’m a math major based on the title of this post and I chose this discipline before I started college (I’m currently a first year). Since I am still a freshmen, I am still learning what it means to be a math major. So I thought I would share what I learned about being a math major at Rutgers. Here are the 7 things that I learned minus all the math.

  1. Wolfram Alpha is my life

I literally rely on Wolfram Alpha, Online Integral Calculator, and even Symbolab to help me finish my homework. And there are so many other online tools to help me with my assignments. I require it on a near daily basis — when I get a Webassign or textbook question wrong and I have no idea what I am doing, it’s helpful to use these tools to figure out how I messed up.

       2. The relief that I get when I get a Webassign question right.

In Webassign (depending on the course and professor), you only get a certain number of tries on a problem and obviously I don’t want to plug in every single answer I get, unless I am confident that I did it right. So when I press the button that says SUBMIT ANSWER, it takes a second to reload the page. That second literally takes forever because I don’t want to do the problem again so when I get it right, I feel so relieved.

        3. Even though I love math, I question my major every single day.

Obviously math is a very hard subject and I often get problems wrong. Often times, when I get too many homework questions, I start wondering how I will do on a test and I question whether math is for me. Then I have to remember that I love math and there is a reason why I chose this major.

        4. I get way too excited and suspicious when the number is a simple integer.

I learned that a problem will never be too easy. I always struggle with a problem and the answer is always something with a million decimal points. So the fact that a problem is so simple with such a simple answer makes me so suspicious.

        5. That people struggle with math.

Whenever I tell people that I am a math major, they either tell me that I must be very smart (which I am not) and that they are so glad that they don’t have to take math in college. Then I would say that math just comes easily to me. Then they would argue with me about how math does not come so easy to them. So for me that fact that math is not easy for everyone always astounds me.

          6. Sometimes I multiply 5×5 and get 10.

I can understand complicated problems but sometimes I can’t do simple addition. I often ask my friends what 5×5 is or what 20+15 is. I can easily do them in my head but those are the questions that I get wrong. And if I don’t have another person around me, then I use my calculator.

         7. That I rely on a curve to get a A in the course.

In high school getting an A wasn’t easy but it was possible. But at Rutgers, the difficulty is on another level. Taking a math class or any STEM class is very difficult and and I literally need the curve to get an A in the class.

I hope you enjoyed learning about my math experiences so far.