Don’t Let Rejection Define You

College isn’t supposed to be easy.

You aren’t supposed to get everything you want. Rejection is natural and necessary in college, because it helps you develop a thick skin that is crucial to your success in the rest of your life.

I have been fortunate in so many opportunities in college. I was accepted to the school I’d fallen in love with. When I was a first-year student, I got an amazing job at the Ohio State student newspaper that I was dying to work for. I was able to move up through other positions there, too. When I went through formal recruitment in my second year of college, I got into the sorority that immediately felt like my home. Over the years I’ve had several internships that shaped my career and meant a great deal to me.

But those successes did not come without failures, and I’m a better person for it.

At the end of my third year at Ohio State, the plan was to apply for editor-in-chief of The Lantern, and hopefully claim the job I’d had my eye on for years. I was hopeful, I was prepared, I was convinced I had a shot. And I did have a shot. But I missed. The job went to a better candidate, and I was devastated.

At first, I didn’t want to believe the news. How could I possibly fail? Was I really hearing correctly, had they really chosen someone else? When I calmed down and accepted the news I was given, my boss presented me with a choice: I could quit the job I had because I was bitter about the job I’d never have, or I could go back out in the newsroom with my head held high and work.

With some anger and resentment in my heart, I chose the latter.

Working that day was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do professionally. But eventually, the pain settled and I made the choice not to return to the paper for my final year in college. Instead, I opted to seek out other opportunities and give myself more free time than I’d been able to enjoy during my other years in college, since I was working an average of 40-45 hours a week at The Lantern.

The excruciating rejection I felt that day last spring turned out to be such a blessing.

I took a fellowship over the summer in Phoenix, Arizona, that showed me maybe newspapers weren’t my calling. Had I been named editor-in-chief, I think I would’ve loved it, but with the thought in the back of my mind that my passion might be elsewhere, I think I would’ve been stifling my opportunity to explore other options.

Instead, I returned to campus and accepted a communications and marketing research internship at Battelle, the world’s largest nonprofit research firm. In the past five months at Battelle, I have learned so much about the corporate marketing and communications world that I wouldn’t have otherwise been exposed to — and it’s doing everything to help my future career.

Rejection is hard — it feels like the end of the world. But it’s not. There is nothing wrong with mourning the loss of an opportunity you had your eye on, but the important part is to compartmentalize your pain and not let it ruin your life.

I could’ve spent my senior year bitter over lost opportunity. But instead I chose to seek out a new opportunity, and that has been endlessly rewarding.

If you go through college and don’t face any rejection, I don’t envy you. Rejection builds you into a stronger person who is more open to new experiences and opportunities they would’ve otherwise missed.

Don’t let rejection define you. Keep an open mind, and take advantage of all Ohio State and Columbus have to offer you. You never know what else you’ll find.

Beat the Cold: 5 Things to Do in Columbus’ Great Indoors

No matter how long you’ve lived in Ohio — born and raised or truly new to OSU — you probably do not love the cold. We’ve all seen our newsfeeds become filled with negative comments the minute the first frost hits and first flakes of snow fall.

The freezing temperatures make it hard to muster the effort to leave your residence hall, especially if you live on the outskirts of campus. As a former Lincoln Tower resident, I understand this well.

But fear not, because Columbus offers plenty to do beyond your residence hall (but still within the warmth of the great indoors). All of these places are accessible by Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) buses; check Google Maps or a COTA schedule for details.

1. Columbus Museum of Art


I visited the Columbus Museum of Art just a few weekends ago, and while it’s small, it is definitely worth a trip. There is currently an exhibit called “In __ We Trust: Art and Money,” which includes a really cool mural created by thousands of pieces of dollar bills, rearranged to make new pictures. This particular exhibit is on display until March 1.

This is a great spot to take a date, to bring a friend or to visit alone. Admission is only $8 for students and the museum’s downtown location makes it a fun day trip away from campus, accessible on a budget.

2. Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens


Just down the street from the art museum is the ultimate place to be inside in the winter. The Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens allows you to escape reality for a day and surround yourself with long-out-of-season blooming flowers and plants.

The indoor gardens and art displays are the perfect distraction from the bitter chill outside. Bring a friend for a day trip or a book to get lost in among the flowers; either way you’ll be able to transport yourself back to sunnier times. Admission is $10 for students.

3. North Market


Already sick of the same five campus dining locations you frequent? Head downtown for the ultimate variety of food from all over the world including Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, fresh produce and other fun shops.

In addition to the fantastic food offered there, the North Market is a great place to spend the afternoon people watching, catching up with friends, or studying for class in the expansive seating area on the second floor. Head back when the weather is warm, and you can even get your meal to go and enjoy eating it in nearby Goodale Park.

4. Center of Science and Industry (COSI)


COSI is perhaps one of the coolest places that students take the least advantage of in Columbus. For some of us, COSI is a place our Girl or Boy Scout troops visited when we were younger, while for others it’s a foreign land. But for any college student, COSI is a really cool place to learn more about science and the universe.

In addition to its exhibits on topics such as energy, space, the ocean and life, COSI recently opened its planetarium — which, though it costs $5 more to visit, includes some really interesting shows about the universe. Admission to COSI is $19 for adults and students.

5. Columbus Blue Jackets game


If you’ve never given hockey a chance, being a student in Columbus gives you the perfect opportunity. There are two ways for students to get cheap tickets to a Blue Jackets game: with D-Tix, through the Ohio Union, and through CBJ student rush tickets.

Hockey is sometimes swept aside and is perhaps less dominant in a country (and city) obsessed with football. But now that the Buckeyes are officially done (and undisputed champions), why not check out another Columbus team? Hockey is really easy to get into, and supporting your city makes it a win-win. Games are held at Nationwide Arena downtown.


Behind the Title: Academic Advisor

One of the first people first-year students have in their corner is their academic advisor. I sat down with Shannon Peltier, an academic advisor with Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, to learn more about what advisors have to offer and why students should visit them.

What are the most common reasons students visit their advisors?

Most students see us for adding and dropping classes, and for scheduling concerns. Not enough students see us for referrals to other resources.

What resources do advisors offer that more students should utilize?

Really, students can see us for any problem, even if you’re sick for a week and miss class, we can refer you to student advocacy or elsewhere. You can come to us if you’re feeling lost, not feeling right about your major.

Really, it’s anything. If you don’t know who to ask, ask your academic advisor. We can refer you to student legal services, landlord services. We are trained to know Ohio State’s resources—emotionally and academically related—from scheduling, finding your major, interview prep, or any smaller details of your life at Ohio State.

What are some common mistake students make in their first year?

Not dropping classes they should have. As Ohio State becomes more competitive, a lot of students were in the top of their class in high school: they never had to study, never had to ask for help. Some students are too stubborn or don’t realize that dropping is an option. Editor’s note: be aware of your credit hours; dropping below full-time–12 credit hours–could impact your financial aid.

Another mistake, going along with that, is not seeking tutoring resources we have here. Some students see it as a challenge to their sense of self, to ask for help when they might benefit from it.

What would you say to a student considering changing their major?

I’d say, “Why do you want to change? What drew you to the major you have in the first place?” and then we’d look for something similar that might suit your skill sets. I’d have them talk about their long-term goals, where they see themselves in the next five years after graduation, and figure out how to help them get there.

I might also refer them to other advising offices, or to university exploration to help narrow down their choices. Another great resource is the Counseling and Consultation Service, to help with any emotional side to changing a major.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I’d have to say seeing the moment when the student “gets it”—whatever “it” is. Whether it’s a major or realizing they can start their own student organization, it’s just such a growing moment, an empowering moment for them.

What are some resources on campus that students should utilize more?

Oh, Ohio State has so many resources. I think a mistake some students make is not getting familiar enough with everything Ohio State offers. You’re not just here getting a degree, you’re crafting who you want to be. You have to think about, “where are you going?” and then find what at Ohio State can get you there.

More specifically, the Writing Center is a great tool students should take more advantage of. The Wellness Center is always doing supportive and innovative things. And we’re a research university, and more students could always be involved in undergraduate research. I don’t think some students realize how easy that is.

What is your favorite Ohio State tradition?

It might sound really corny, but the singing of Carmen Ohio on senior day at the football stadium. It’s just really beautiful—the words take on an extra depth.

What else would you like first-year students to know?

I’d like them to know that advisors want you to come see us! The days I hate are the ones with no appointments and no one to talk to. We’re here to help you gain life skills.

5 Ways to Make the Most of Ohio State’s Bye Week

Looking ahead on your calendar to this weekend might’ve sparked in you a sense of dread. Don’t worry, that’s common for Buckeyes on bye weekends.

With no game and no reason to don your most spirited Scarlet and Gray, perhaps you feel a hole in your heart or a pit in your stomach. You might wonder, “What is there to do without Buckeye football?”

Or maybe you don’t care about football. At all.

Either way, there are plenty of fun ways to beat the boredom during a free weekend in Columbus, and I’ve compiled a few of them for you.

1. Take a day trip to Polaris or Easton

Retail therapy is not only a good way to forget about the lack of Ohio State football in your weekend, but also a way to break up the monotony of your daily on-campus routines. Both Polaris and Easton are not far, and if you have a friend with a car, they’re easy day trips.

Don’t have access to wheels? You can also get to both by bus. It takes a little longer, but as someone who used her BuckID for COTA rides all over Columbus during her freshman year, I can say it’s definitely doable.

2. See a show

Columbus has a great scene for music and other performance arts. It’s obviously a hot spot for big-name tours that roll through the state, but beyond the box-office breakers, there are plenty of shows you can see on a college student’s budget—or even for free.

Right downtown, accessible by the No. 2 COTA bus route, is Columbus Commons, which hosts plenty of free events throughout the year, including concerts and plays. This Saturday, check out a high-energy performance by Columbus Dance Theatre. If music is more your scene, go see a smaller-venue show at The Basement, Kobo, or Kafe Kerouac, just to name a few. Tickets to these shows are often pretty cheap, and even if you don’t know a ton—or any—of the artist’s music, that’s half the fun. You might even discover your new favorite band.

3. Spend an afternoon in the park

While Ohio is in this limbo between summer and fall, the weather is about as perfect as it gets to enjoy one of Columbus’ many parks. Whether you pack a picnic (grab sandwiches and chips from Subway), get chai lattes for you and a friend, or just bring some music and headphones, a day in the park is something most college students forget to enjoy.

Some of my favorite places to spend the afternoon are Goodale Park in Victorian Village and Glen Echo Park on the border of Clintonville and the University District. Both are within walking or jogging distance of campus, adding to the time you can spend enjoying the great outdoors.

4. Walk through the Short North

That’s it. You don’t have to enter with a plan. Just walk through it.

The Short North Arts District is filled with endlessly fascinating shops, restaurants, and galleries. There’s vintage shop A Gal Named Cinda Lou, T-shirt trove Homage, stationery shop On Paper and indescribable Big Fun Columbus — named one of the 20 Coolest Stores in America. Whether you crave the dynamic ice cream flavors of Jeni’s or the simplicity of Whit’s Frozen Custard, the Short North can satisfy your sweet tooth.

One of my fondest memories from my first year at Ohio State is a night my roommates and I dressed up and went to dinner at Hubbard Grille in the Short North. It was simple, but nontraditional, and we had a great time. The Short North does not disappoint.

5. Get lost in The Book Loft

The Book Loft in German Village will forever be my pick for a “must-see” place in Columbus. It’s located in the heart of German Village—which is also worth exploring—and is accessible from campus with the No. 8 COTA bus. With 32 seemingly endless rooms of books, The Book Loft is one of the nation’s few remaining independent book stores, and it is absolutely wonderful.

I’ve spent so many days getting lost in the maze of this place, and learning its twists and turns has been both fun and relaxing. The Book Loft is just one of those places you have to see to completely understand its glory, and it is without a doubt one of the coolest places in Columbus. Plus, books tend to be a little cheaper there, so shop away.

However you decide to spend your days of freedom from class, don’t be afraid to branch out beyond playing video games in your dorm room with your roommates and ordering PAD. While it’s easy to fall into that routine, Columbus has so much more to offer, and this is the best time to take advantage of it. 

4 Reasons To Get Involved At Ohio State

Buckeyes have hundreds of ways to get involved on and around campus. For some first-year students, that sounds like a welcome challenge, a chance to continue the heavy involvement they loved in high school. For others, it’s a terrifying sea of too many choices, with no way to nail down a perfect fit.

But it doesn’t have to be.

Pursuing my passions at Ohio State has taught me a few lessons in the past three years.

1. Involvement linked to your major is endlessly rewarding

After choosing journalism as my major, I began writing for The Lantern. That newspaper became my life for nearly three years. Through many semesters of long nights putting the paper together, I walked away with some of my closest college friends and invaluable professional experience.

Finding an organization related to what you’re studying, and what you ultimately think you want to do the rest of your life, is imperative. The experience is impressive to interviewers when you’re looking for jobs and internships.

The Lantern laid the groundwork for every internship I’ve had at Ohio State. While it is possible to land an internship without much experience in your field, these internships are competitive, and someone with experience sets you apart from someone with none.

Many majors have clubs connected to them somehow, and the networking opportunities alone are reason enough to join.

2. Primary passions can become hobbies

Coming into college, I was optimistic about keeping up with running after competing in cross country and track for six years. I thought I’d join running club and find other like-minded people to be running partners.

This didn’t happen, and that’s okay. Friendships, classes, and other involvement took up much of my free time, and running became a secondary hobby.

College is a wonderful time to learn more about yourself and what you want to devote the rest of your life to, and sometimes the things that were most important to you in high school fade away in this period of your life.

One piece of advice I’d give to hang on to important parts of yourself is to still make time for the things you love, the things you want to spend a lifetime enjoying, even if it’s just casually.

For me, I’ve found this through training for the Columbus Marathon. I’m training solo, but it gets me off the couch, into my shoes and onto the trails where I feel at home. Even if your past loves become a side hobby, there’s always room for what’s important to you; you just have to be creative.

3. Get outside your comfort zone

When some of my friends joined or showed interest in Greek Life, I rolled my eyes and cracked jokes. Looking back, I see now how wrong I was to pass judgment on something I didn’t understand.

I decided to go through formal sorority recruitment as a second-year student in the spring of 2013, and every day I’m thankful that I did. Greeks are social, involved, intelligent and bold. I’m a better person because of the strong women in my chapter.

My point is not to preach the benefits of joining a fraternity or sorority. While it has been a fantastic way for me to get to know so many incredible Buckeyes, it’s not for everyone.

Rather, my point is that if you’re curious about something, try it. The worst that can happen is you won’t like it and you can look for something else that fits your personality and lifestyle better.

But college is about taking risks that are really only available to you when you’re young. So attend an info session for the organization that stood out to you at the involvement fair. Apply for a service trip. Pick up a new sport or skill. You never know where getting a little uncomfortable can take you.

4. Getting involved changes everything

Many people choose Ohio State because they love the big-campus feel. The busyness of our sidewalks and class buildings, the wide range of opportunities—on paper those things are wonderful.

But in practice, at times the vastness can make Ohio State a bit lonely. The more organizations you join and people you meet, the smaller the university becomes.

In your first year, you will make tons of friends in your hall and maybe in your classes. Some might turn out to be the best friends of your college days and beyond, while you might part ways with others.

Those individuals you meet through campus involvement will tend to share your goals, priorities, passions and interests. Suddenly this great, vast university will feel even more like a community, and you’ll realize how closely we’re connected with one another.

Getting involved is such a beautiful thing at Ohio State because there truly is something for everyone, and the possibilities are limitless–you never know where you might find your new home.