My first semester has been a rollercoaster of new experiences both academically and personally. On the academic side, I had many struggles and successes. Chemistry, unfortunately, was mostly a struggle but there’s still hope for the final. A bit of advice: if you’re considering STEM, keep considering. And considering. And considering. Because if you’re anything like me, you’ll end up questioning your life choices every single day but keep at it! Just be sure of yourself. Biology on the other hand is like a breath of fresh air comparatively. Just don’t forget your ONLY homework assignment for the week. Sarah Ball is a doll who, while being incredibly intelligent, also manages to look stunning every morning at 9:35 am while the rest of us look like trash pandas who just rolled out of bed. English, oh English. A true blessing. English was the saving grace of this semester and required only what you could give. As the famous John Mulaney would say, “College is just your opinion. You raise your hand and go, ‘I think Emily Dickenson’s a lesbian.’ ‘Partial credit.’” That is both accurate and wonderful in the English world (just don’t try it with Chemistry). Personally, this semester has been one of growth and learning. You come to college thinking you have a social life at home and you realize that you’ve been very, very wrong. Until you go out four nights a week and still study for your exam, you have not truly experienced what college has to offer. And the best part? You are by no means obligated to do so. You have total freedom to stay in your bed and study or watch Netflix or just sleep for days without human interaction and that’s okay and sometimes completely necessary. Your friend group will also most likely expand as I have learned. You may go from having that BFF who knows your every thought to having six and its a bit of a culture shock. These friends make it worth it though. They’re there just to support and love and motivate you to be the best you can possibly be and its beautiful. This coming weekend my friends are celebrating my half birthday because my real one is in the summer and we can’t all be together then. Honestly, I’m so grateful for them and everything they do. With this increase in friends comes a sharp decrease in privacy as well. No matter the time of day, any one of them could stroll into your room and just sit down for hours and its fine. If you’re sad, it becomes both a good and bad thing. On one hand, company is good and distracting and therapeutic. On the other hand, however, you may one day realize that you haven’t been able to truly cry your heart out and you may end up letting it out loudly and horribly at three in the morning on a Tuesday night while your roommate is asleep across the room. This is okay. That is the moral of my first semester at OSU: It is okay. No matter what happens, it’s not the end of the world and it’s most certainly not worth the stress. If you screw up, let someone down, forget a deadline, or just feel incorrigibly sad, it’s okay. You will move on.
The humanities, like air, always surround us in our day to day lives but rarely do we truly see and acknowledge them. Over the past week, I have made an effort to focus on the people, cultures, and experiences around me as Halloween, a sometimes controversial holiday approached. To start off the week, I attended the broadway show, Aladdin. The play centers on a poor young man in a middle eastern city who falls in love with a princess. The play discusses many aspects of culture and poverty that are prevalent in said society. For example, Jasmine, the princess, is being forced to marry, potentially against her will; a tradition that still continues to be common today in modern society. Aladdin on the other hand faces poverty so horrible that he risks execution daily for even a small scrap of bread. These experiences helped me to consider how even a fairy tale can open one’s eyes to the reality of the world. This perspective enabled me to look at Halloween with an open mind and be more receptive to some of the cultural appropriation that happens every year. I was relieved to not see a plethora of traditional Native American costumes flood the streets on Halloween night. This shift in both attitude and the media gives me hope for the future. As the week continues, I hope to learn more about Dia de Los Muertos and how that can be brought into my life as a new cultural and learning experience.
I was born to immigrant parents from the Philippines as the youngest of three sisters. Because of my status as the youngest and the tumultuous relationship of my parents, I became dependent on my sisters and never learned to defend myself, still don’t actually. Growing up, I was bullied for being Asian and I was faced with endless squinty eye and eating dog jokes. Unable to stand up for myself, I laughed it off and internalized everything. When at home, I was met with a family who also bullied me for my passions and my self-esteem plummeted. Entering eighth grade, I began to question my sexuality and I began to believe that i was going to hell because of the Catholic beliefs I grew up immersed in. This led to depression my freshman year of high school where I had friends but I never felt like I was truly understood. As an Internet child, I bonded with people from all over and I wouldn’t be here today without them. With their help, I came to terms with my sexuality and gained ground in finding my faith once again. By the end of high school, I was ready to leave. Ohio State was already a home away from home because of my sisters attending here before me. I was super excited for my freshman year; being a bio major, independent, making new friends, getting into OUAB, and becoming an OA!! None of it happened. My grades dropped and my depression returned as I felt I was disappointing my parents. With the return of my depression, my confidence fell and I became scared to come out to new people. My roommate became my savior. She encouraged me and supported me in seeking help and counseling. By validating my feelings, she helped me out of my depression and has encouraged me to keep working towards an improved mental health. I switched my major to health sciences, opened up to my friends, got more involved, and became a peer leader. As a peer leader, I have been able to share my story and let incoming freshmen who may have been where I was my freshman year know that there are people out there who will understand and validate their individual experiences. To this day, I continue to work on my mental health through counseling and self-reflection, it’s a work in progress but everyday it gets a little bit brighter.
My first week of college has been eye-opening and exhilarating. From learning my way around campus to navigating the bus system, each experience has helped me grow into myself and gain an enhanced independence. Campus has quickly become a home away from home. My favorite places on campus are Thompson Library, the Union, and the 18th Ave Library because they are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. One of the best ways to get to know campus is to explore the dining options scattered throughout. Despite a severely decreases appetite, some of the best places to visit are the Union Market with all of its choices to go, K-Comm with its quaint atmosphere, and Scott’s with two floors of seemingly endless options. The all-day breakfast is perfect for all of the pancake enthusiasts out there like me. The campus dining halls are just the beginning of the food scene in Columbus that I’ve encountered during my first week. Nothing beats Waffle House at 4am or the refreshing taste of Bibibop on a sweltering day. My excitement for the food is only outmatched by my excitement for classes. While having a difficult schedule that includes both biology and chemistry, I was nervous for classes to truly begin and to be tested in how well I would perform in the college environment. As of now, the classes have been interesting, engaging, and thought-provoking, however, I’m sure the difficulty will increase. All in all, my first week has been full of new (and delicious) experiences that leave me craving more.
[“Career” is where you can collect information about your experiences and skills that will apply to your future career. Like your resume, this is information that will evolve over time and should be continually updated. For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Delete these instructions and add your own post.]
[Artifacts are the items you consider to be representative of your academic interests and achievements. For each entry, include both an artifact and a detailed annotation. An annotation includes both a description of the artifact and a reflection on why it is important to you, what you learned, and what it means for your next steps. For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email email@example.com. Delete these instructions and add your own post.]
[Your “About Me” is a brief biographical statement that might include your intended major, your academic interests, your goals, as well as the things that make you unique. Definitely include a picture! Also, remember that you can always update this post at any point. For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Delete these instructions and add your own post.]
[The Home Page will show a running blog of your recent posts, which are categorized and show on that category’s page. Please delete this post or edit with your own information.]
[ “Year in Review” is where you should reflect on the past year and show how you have evolved as a person and as a student. You may want to focus on your growth in a particular area (as a leader, scholar, researcher, etc.) or you may want to talk about your overall experience over the past year. For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email email@example.com. Delete these instructions and add your own post.]
[ “G.O.A.L.S.” is a place where students write about how their planned, current, and future activities may fit into the Honors & Scholars G.O.A.L.S.: Global Awareness, Original Inquiry, Academic Enrichment, Leadership Development, and Service Engagement. For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Delete these instructions and add your own post.
- Global Awareness: Students cultivate and develop their appreciation for diversity and each individual’s unique differences. For example, consider course work, study abroad, involvement in cultural organizations or activities, etc.
- Original Inquiry: Honors & Scholars students understand the research process by engaging in experiences ranging from in-class scholarly endeavors to creative inquiry projects to independent experiences with top researchers across campus and in the global community. For example, consider research, creative productions or performances, advanced course work, etc.
- Academic Enrichment: Honors & Scholars students pursue academic excellence through rigorous curricular experiences beyond the university norm both in and out of the classroom.
- Leadership Development: Honors & Scholars students develop leadership skills that can be demonstrated in the classroom, in the community, in their co-curricular activities, and in their future roles in society.
- Service Engagement: Honors & Scholars students commit to service to the community.]