4 Ways to Solve Roommate Conflict

During my first year, four of us lived together in Drackett Tower from different schools and with different backgrounds and majors and–as we soon found out–different habits. I was used to sharing a room and living with sisters, so I figured I’d be a pro.

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Although we finished our first year as good friends with some incredible memories and most of us are living together again this year (our senior year!), we also had some less admirable moments: late night arguments, food possessiveness, what “clean” looks like and–oh–one roommate’s infamous decision to wake us up at 4 in the morning during finals week. (We laugh about it now.)

From my own experiences with roommate conflict–and later, training as an RA–here are tips to make your year successful with your roommate(s)!

1. Honest and polite communication

In my first year I became sick with mono and slept through almost all of my morning alarms. In my heavily unconscious state I had no idea that I kept hitting snooze and my roommates interpreted this as my blatant inconsideration. As a result, one morning I awoke to a roommate throwing pillows and wrathfully yelling at me. I felt horrible because I was not aware of the problem and I could certainly sympathize with their frustration! Had I known sooner, I could have established a better plan for waking up.

Another time, I left my shoes by the door, which irritated one of my roommates. She told me this directly before it became a big deal. It was a simple fix to move my shoes and I appreciated that she would let me know, before sharing her feelings with our other roommates!

  • Be honest and upfront, but don’t blow the issue out of proportion. Let your roommate know that you realize it’s something minor, but that it is a pet peeve of yours or that it makes you feel uncomfortable.

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  • Be polite!! Don’t be so blunt that you come off callous and hurt someone’s feelings. By not wording your request carefully enough you can accidentally incite an argument or isolate yourself from any future constructive conversations.
  • Avoid going to hall-mates and friends before talking directly with your roommate. Direct communication (after giving a little time to work out how you will politely approach your roommate) is the best way to solve an issue and avoid gossip or hurt feelings.

*Disclaimer: If it’s a legal issue, dangerous or your roommate is unwilling to change, do not hesitate to talk to your RA!

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2. Know when to pick your battles

Although it is good to be honest when something is bothering you, realize when an issue is worth talking about and when something is so minor or ridiculous that your request may come off as extreme.

  • Think how you would feel if that person asked you to change something about your own habits or behavior.
  • Note if you are the one who always becomes irritated and reflect on whether it’s due to the actions of your roommate or if you’re frustrated with something else (and blaming your roommate).
  • Be careful of the frequency of these requests—be fair and balanced whenever you come forth and address issues with your roommate!

3. Respect different views and compromise

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Problem: Your roommate brings a significant other to the room during weeknights, when you like to use the room to study.

Potential Solutions:

  • Work out a reasonable schedule or timeframe
  • Offer to do your homework in a study room; ask them to find a different location on other occasions
  • Definitely ask for a heads up

It is very easy to observe your roommate’s actions and think, “I would never do that.” Be careful of expecting your roommate to behave and think just like you. Judging your roommate and determining that your values are right and his or hers are wrong is a very dangerous barrier to cross.

You may have different habits and different values: this is okay! Learn to be courteous of one another’s differences.

Whether your roommate goes out a lot, has visitors over often, skips class or argues with his or her parents, you don’t have to agree with it, but you have to respect that person’s life choices.

Create a well-constructed plan of give and take; be prepared to compromise, and if you request something, be willing to make sacrifices of your own in exchange. This is your shared space, so both individuals have to take steps to ensure the comfort and freedom of the residents of that space.

4. Know how to create change

Take the first step in creating change and change your own mentality.

Do not expect to be best friends with your roommate. Oftentimes the best roommates are the ones who are simply capable of being respectful and courteous to one another, and that can start with you!

Instead of thinking of the ways your roommate is a bad one, think about how you will be a good roommate.

5 Roles of a Peer Mentor

One of the amazing things about Ohio State is the opportunity to meet new people.

Perhaps you’re excited to bond over late-night movies with the people on your residence hall floor, or maybe you’re making plans to hang out with friends you meet in your classes.

Is a peer mentor on your list of people to meet at Ohio State? Peer mentors can be a telephone switchboard, a magnifying glass, a trampoline, a street, and a cheerleader all rolled into one incredible resource and source of support. Crazy, right? Read on to learn why you should find a peer mentor at Ohio State.

A peer mentor is a magnifying glass

Peer mentors who are in their second year (or beyond) can benefit you in many ways. They have been in your shoes not too long ago–they have experienced the excitement of Welcome Week, the thrill of meeting new people, and the pleasure of being a new Buckeye. They have also endured the occasional bad grade, the rough patches of being in a new environment, and the stress of finals week.

The good news is peer mentors want to share their experiences with you, and give you tips and advice to succeed and excel. Maybe you have a chemistry professor with whom you’re just not clicking. How can you get through the semester when you’re really struggling with this class? Peer mentors can share with you a similar experience they navigated and discuss some resources that may help. When you’re struggling with something, or simply seeking another opinion, your peer mentor can offer a helpful perspective because they have already examined the problem thoroughly (using their magnifying glass of experience).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A peer mentor is a switchboard operator

Think back to a time before we were born, and offices had switchboard operators to direct telephone calls to the proper recipient. Your peer mentor can be like a switchboard operator, taking different avenues to make a connection for you. Let’s say you’re interested in getting a part-time job on campus, but aren’t really sure how to go about looking for one. Peer mentors have a variety of tried-and-true resources to connect you to the correct contact on campus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A peer mentor is a trampoline

No, your peer mentor won’t be doing jumps and flips–though we would jump through hoops for you! We are a sounding board, someone with whom you can “bounce” around ideas. Maybe you have an idea to start a new club on campus. Peer mentors are happy to listen to you and hash out your idea. They’ll also help you set it in motion by connecting you to the right resources on campus.

Much like how you soar on a trampoline, peer mentors also help you soar. Let’s go back to that chemistry class example: we want to see you succeed and will do anything to help you. Your peer mentor might study with you, quiz you, and encourage you on the day of your test. We’ll help you receive a Au (ahem, the chemical symbol for gold) star at the end of the semester.

A peer mentor is a street

Peer mentorship is not just about the mentee (that’s you!); it’s a two-way street. Through peer mentoring, not only are you connected to resources around campus, you also develop a meaningful relationship and resource in each other. Peer mentors learn as much from you as you learn from them. You may come from a different background or hometown, or you could be pursuing a different major; and yet, here you are guiding each other along. Don’t look at this as an upperclass student telling you what to do and what clubs to join. Think of it as a relationship you’re building with someone who has been in your shoes, and you’ll learn and grow from each other.

A peer mentor is a cheerleader

Peer mentorship is not only about providing you with resources and helping you get through tough times. It’s about celebrating all the successes too! A peer mentor is your own personal cheerleader. We’re here to support you and cheer you on, and to make sure that your time at Ohio State is one that lives up to our alma mater:

Time and change will surely show, how firm thy friendship O-HI-O.

So all those people you want to meet while you’re at Ohio State–your hallmates and classmates–make sure to add a peer mentor on the list, because we want you to enjoy every second you spend here, and we come with our own set of pom-poms.

Next step: The First Year Connections Team is a group of dedicated upperclass students who want to ensure that YOU have a memorable first year. Sign up by Monday, September 8 to participate in the Connections Team peer mentoring program this fall: click this link and enter the code fyctmentor.

16 birthday gifts you can find around campus!

As a student at Ohio State, everyday feels like my birthday! However, when my actual birthday rolls around (September 25th just in case you need to know when to buy my gift), an extra present doesn’t hurt. In honor of Day 16 of orientation, here are 16 gift ideas for Ohio State students (found in the campus/Columbus area):

1.Discount tickets

Discount Tickets (or D-Tix) gives you discounts on a wide variety of opportunities and events in the Columbus area! From sports, concerts, shows and almost anything you can imagine, tickets are sold at a reduced price…if you want to buy something for your friend on a budget, D-Tix is the way to go.

2. Concert tickets at Newport Music Hall

Newport Music Hall is directly across the street from the Ohio Union, and musical acts perform there nearly every day. You’re likely to find something your friend will love, ranging anywhere from 2 Chainz to Neon Trees.

3. Dinner at Bistro 2110

The menu at Bistro 2110 (located inside the Blackwell Inn) is top notch! If you’re a food connoisseur like me, using some of your meal plan to eat steak and other delicious food is the way to go. Just remember to reserve  a table in advance!

4. Ohio State football tickets

Just in case you didn’t know, Ohio State has a pretty good football team. What’s a better gift than getting the experience of seeing the Buckeyes win in person surrounded with 100,000 of your best friends?

5. Ohio State apparel

Perhaps you’ve noticed that your friend’s wardrobe is missing some scarlet and gray? Check out Barnes and Noble College in the Ohio Union and gift wrap that Ohio State jersey or hat.

6. Name an entree at Sloopy’s Diner!

Food naming rights is not a difficult endeavor, but it can have a meaningful (year-long) impact! It’s as simple as applying for the Sloopy’s Diner sandwich club.

7. CD of TBDBITL

TBDBITL is short for “The Best Damn Band In The Land” and if you haven’t experienced them yet, check out some of their shows on YouTube. A quick trip to the University Bookstore will get your friends the sounds of TBDBITL wherever they go.

8. Textbooks

Are textbooks really a gift? Absolutely! Textbooks can be a large investment each semester, so being able to alleviate some of that financial burden is a gift worth more than its weight in gold (and because those books can weigh A LOT).

9. Massages at the RPAC

Sometimes a little R&R is needed so that the stress doesn’t get the best of us. Massages at the RPAC are given by licensed massage therapists for a fee, so you know your friend will enjoy it.

10. Suit from Pursuit

Pursuit is a local suit shop owned by some Ohio State alumni. All you need is your friend’s size, and you can guarantee that your friend will end up with a quality suit. Don’t have the size? Pursuit also sells other accessories.

11. A personalized candle from The Candle Lab

You can get candles that smell like pancakes or grass, or make your own!

12. A round of golf at the Ohio State golf course

Whether your friend is a golf expert or they’ve never played before, it’s a great experience. Scarlet and Gray are the names of the Ohio State golf courses and all you have to do is pay a green fee and schedule a game!

13. Picnic on the Oval

As a college student, FREE is the best price tag. Pack up a lunch and spend some time on the Oval in the middle of campus. Pack a Frisbee for some fun games and a blanket for sunbathing, but remember to wear sunscreen!

14. Cookies from Insomnia

Sometimes, a box of cookies is the perfect combination of, here’s a gift for your birthday, and I know this is too much for food for you, so as your friend, I will take it upon myself to help you finish all of these cookies.

15. Segway tour of Columbus

One of the benefits of attending Ohio State is living within walking distance of the 15th largest city in the United States; however, I recommend having a birthday party via Segway! This is an awesome tour to get acquainted with Columbus.

16. The little things

Your friend may too busy on their own birthday to go anywhere or do anything but it’s the little things that make a huge difference. Offer to proofread a paper or combine their laundry with your own…even a text message can make any day feel like a happy birthday.

Tune in Wednesday to learn from Molly about the 18 things that you can only experience at Ohio State! 

10 People You May Meet at Ohio State

It’s Day 10 of orientation, which means I’m here to share with you the 10 people you may meet at Ohio State. Here we go!

1. The Campus Celebrity

This student typically has a very memorable personality and has likely been committed to a student organization since stepping on campus for the first time. This student says “hi” to anyone and everyone on campus (celebrities know many people!). The campus celebrity could be motivation for you to become involved on campus…or campus celebrities could make you late for everything because of the number of people they stop to talk to along the way.

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2. The Over-Involved Student

There are nearly 1,000 student organizations on campus and there can be students who just want to be part of everything. Finding them can be a gift and a curse: a gift because you will have the opportunity to participate in things you could probably never imagine; a curse because you will probably get invited to everything! The key to campus involvement is balancing commitments (co-curricular, academic, social, etc.).

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3. The Athlete

Not all athletes are the same. There are so many sports that are offered on campus, and there could be an athlete in your hallway or even your room. Some students meet an athlete that they become particularly close with because athletes can offer a unique campus perspective…the athlete is just one more person who adds to your well-rounded Ohio State experience.

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4. The Thrifter

Saving money is something that many college students (and parents) love to do! Find a friend at Ohio State who loves to thrift shop – this person usually know where to go to save a couple dollars.

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5. The Classmate Soulmate

Students who can connect with a peer in a difficult class are more likely to achieve success. The Classmate Soulmate can help you more solidly comprehend the course material through things like review sessions and scheduled study times. Connecting with your peers around academics could be the difference between getting an A in a class instead of a C (or worse!)…and those helpful peers could become good friends along the way!

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6. The Ultimate Organizer

Similar to the Classmate Soulmate, Ultimate Organizers prove that no one can be too organized. From their socks down to the color of the pen they use for each class, they fully embody the word organization. The greatest benefit to you in befriending an Ultimate Organizer is that you’ll know exactly where to be, when to be there, and what you need to take with you.

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7. Cultural Clarifier

Cultural Clarifiers come from backgrounds different from your own. The diverse student body at Ohio State provides students with opportunities to learn more about unique cultures, customs, and traditions that they may not have known about prior to beginning their college journey. Cultural Clarifiers take pride in their cultural heritage and are excited to share aspects of their heritage with others.

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8. The Musician

Everyone should have a friend with a little Mariah Carey in their vocal cords or who can make anyone swoon with a saxophone! Meeting students who are into music or who love to perform helps you to release that inner celebrity that is only heard in the shower at home. Musicians can give great musical insight, and this can be a student who could accompany you to concerts or other music-related events that occur on campus and in Columbus!

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9. Mirror Image

Have you ever met someone and after a brief introduction or conversation you instantly thought,

WOW! We basically live the same life.

The Mirror Image is someone great to have around when you need someone who can relate to you! This person usually ends up becoming a best friend because you can spend hours on end talking about life experiences, academics, interests, family and even those unnatural obsessions you have with One Direction or Taylor Swift.

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10. The President of BSA (Black Student Association)

Alante’ Ward is the current president of the Black Student Association (hint hint, wink wink). He is a social butterfly who loves to make others laugh and smile. Also, he does a great job at representing a student who embraces his own ethnic culture, while at the same time adding to the overall student culture at Ohio State. I guarantee after one conversation, the rest of your day will be filled with smiles!

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For Day 11 of orientation on Monday, check out Lexi Fannin’s blog post about the 11 items that should always stay in your room!

High FIVEs and Other Ways to Meet New Buckeyes!

It’s hard to believe that the first week of orientation is wrapping up today…it’s been FIVE days of fun and learning, that’s for sure! It’s also been a week of making connections. One of the most important parts of orientation is just meeting fellow Buckeyes, both new and old. So in that spirit, I want to share with you FIVE ways to meet new Buckeyes at your orientation.

High Fives. Literally.

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Okay, you may be wondering where I am going with this and if I could be serious. I am! It may not actually be high fives, but you will have the opportunity to interact with a small group of students throughout your program and there is nothing the Orientation Leaders (aka Team Red Polo) loves more than a good icebreaker. Don’t be too cool for the icebreakers — everyone is doing them these days and it gives you a chance to get to know other first-year students and to find some common interests. You never know what you may learn from someone and you could meet your future best friend who also likes that one thing you thought no one else loved like you!

Mingle while you munch

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Join the Orientation Leaders and other first-year students in the Ohio Union around 5 p.m. to grab dinner and hang out before the evening session. It’s a great way to relax and meet students outside of your small group. For those of you staying in Morrill Tower for the night, introduce yourself to the other students on your floor and make plans to grab breakfast in the morning. This is all good practice for when you are on campus in the fall — many students find it easy to manage their time and friends by doing things like grabbing a bite to eat and catching up at the same time.

RPAC games

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There is nothing like some healthy competition! Stick around for the evening activities, especially RPAC games, in order to reconnect with your small group. This is personally one of my favorite activities as an Orientation Leader because I really get the chance to get to know my small groups better. It’s all good fun and there are activities for everyone to participate in while being cheered on by new friends!

It’s as simple as introducing yourself

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It may seem awkward to turn to a stranger and introduce yourself, but everyone is in the same boat. Many new students are just as nervous about making friends or meeting new people as you may be. Most likely, your neighbor is going to be relieved to have someone to chat with instead of sitting there in silence waiting for a session to start. Furthermore, you are going to find yourself in groups of people who share the same study areas as you — you may find that you’ll see these students in the fall because you’ll be taking many of the same classes if you share the same major. Even if you don’t see each other in class, you are bound to run into each other in the residence halls or walking across the Oval. Why not get started getting to know each other now?

Follow up and ask questions

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Alright, I might be diverging from the whole “new Buckeyes” piece of this blog challenge, but just hear me out. Plus, these Buckeyes are new to you (that counts, right?!) At orientation you have the chance to meet some great upperclassmen as well as professional staff members at the university who want nothing more than to see you succeed in your first year. From your Orientation Leaders, to Hall Directors, to the Ohio Union staff and everyone in between…start making those meaningful connections! We know that you most likely will still have questions when you leave campus, so make sure you are asking for answers! Everyone is more than willing to give you their contact information so that you can use us as resources throughout the summer and your first year. I’m still in contact with my Orientation Leader and a few people I met at orientation because I remained in contact! Don’t let those resources go to waste.

That’s all I got…I hope that this has been helpful to you as you begin to plan your orientation visit. Orientation is the beginning to a wonderful journey as a Buckeye, and it’s my hope that you use these tips to find some people who will be apart of your journey.

Make sure you check back here on Monday for what I’m sure will be an excellent post from Connor MacDowell. His challenge? To tell you about SIX songs that describe the orientation experience. Get excited…I know I am!

Buck-I-SERV: The trip of your life

Picture this: you’re hammering nails for a house you’re helping to build while under the sun in 70 degree weather in Florida; then at night, you’re sitting on the beach, sipping your iced tea, watching the sunset with fellow Buckeyes who have become your best friends.

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Building homes isn’t your thing? How about entering a urban middle school, building relationships with at-risk youth through one-on-one interactions, tutoring, playing a game of ball, etc., and getting rewarded by enjoying some southern soul food in the heart of Atlanta?

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You say you are more of an outdoors type? Let’s take a trip to Minnesota where you can serve as a camp counselor to youth who have been affected by HIV/AIDS, live in transitional housing, identify as LGBTQ, or have diabetes.

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Do you want to get far away from Ohio? Then head to Colorado to help prepare shoes that will be shipped out of the country to countries where shoes are a luxury.

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Now you’re doubting me and saying that there isn’t anything out there that can accommodate this, especially for college students. We go to The Ohio State University where there is something for everyone. To silence the doubters, YES, there something called Buck-I-SERV, where you can do exactly what I mentioned above and more! Now, I know you have some questions and concerns, so let me start addressing them.

What exactly is Buck-I-SERV? 

According to Buck-I-SERV’s website, “Buck-I-SERV is a weeklong, substance-free program centered on community service and civic engagement.” My interpretation: you get to travel to new places, see and experience new things with other Buckeyes all while helping the local community. These trips are offered during winter, spring and summer breaks and are typically 10-person trips, however, there are some that are 20- and even 50-person trips!

Wait, can I explore the city where I’m serving?

YES!!! This isn’t just a work trip (although, I wouldn’t call what you do there as “work”), it’s also a social trip! Go ahead and visit the local restaurants and attractions. Actually, you are required to explore the city and have fun! When I went to Atlanta, I tried my first ever chicken and waffles, a southern staple.  So before you say “well, I really want to go to the beach and I don’t think I can do that on a Buck-I-SERV trip”, think again.

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Where will I stay?

You aren’t living in the presidential suite at a Ritz-Carlton, but depending on where you go to, you will be living in anything from a hostel to log cabins, and even alumni homes! On my Buck-I-SERV trip, we lived in a church with three other universities!

This sounds expensive!

$200-$400 for a week long trip. No, I did not forget to add an extra zero on the end. Yes, they are that cheap. These prices include the ride to and from the service city, housing, site fees and also a small donation. Although you have to pay for food, you were already planning to pay for it when you were booking your $300 flight.

I’ve already visited all 50 states, so I don’t think there is anything for me.

Hahaha. Good one. For those of you who have been lucky enough to visit all 50 states, good for you, I’m still trying to get there. But I highly doubt you’ve been to Marysville, TN or Pocahontas County, WV. Even if you’ve been to places like Dallas, Boston, New York or Chicago, I’m sure the last time you went, you didn’t serve their community and see things you would have never seen by simply being a tourist. And if you want to be more adventurous, you can go serve abroad. In fact, for the 2013-2014 school year, there have been Buck-I-SERV trips to five different countries!

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Information overload!

I know, I’m sorry. I probably told you more in this one blog than you learned in your survey class. But fear not, if you need more information, go ahead and check out Buck-I-SERV’s website.

As I start to wind down this blog, I hope you give Buck-I-SERV a look when you are planning your future breaks. Be on the look out for the applications, and I promise you won’t be disappointed. Not to be cliché, but the memories, the people that you meet, and the experiences that you gain on these trips will truly last forever.

Coming Out When Coming To Ohio State

So it’s your first year. There are probably so many things going on that you barely have time to think. If you are like I was, your views on the world are probably changing and you are beginning to find out who you really are. And I am sure that for many of you, that means discovering your true sexual orientation. If you happen to be in this situation, here are four things to keep in mind when accepting yourself and coming out:

1)   Come out when you are ready

I have heard so many people tell others to come out before it’s “too late”. Well, it’s actually never too late. Whether you come out at 20 or 40, it doesn’t matter, as long at you think it’s the right time for you. Personally, I came out when I was 15 years old and although it was young, it was the right time for me. Just keep in mind – you are never going to be completely comfortable telling somebody for the first time. You just have to take that risk, no matter what age you are.

2)   Don’t let other people tell you how to act

Being gay does not define you, nor anyone else, as a person. The concept that you have to act a certain way if you are gay is completely a myth and based on misguided stereotypes. It was a concept that I unfortunately believed in when I first came out and it really held me back from truly accepting who I was. Most importantly, remember that being gay is only a single part of you; it does not reflect who you are or what you are able to do/accomplish in life.

3)   People are more accepting that you think

One of the most memorable parts of my high school career was during government class, where we were having a discussion about gay marriage. The class was full with people who ran track with me, and I didn’t exactly think they were the most accepting people. I walked in thinking “Oh here we go.” As I was expecting, I spoke openly about gay marriage and debated with a girl sitting across from me. Class ended and my track friends started should “You go Big B (my track nickname)!” and “You totally rocked that.” The moral of this story: don’t judge people just because you think they will judge you. The people who you think are least likely to be accepting are sometimes the most accepting.

4)   People are here to help you

When I first came out, I really didn’t have anyone to turn to and it really inhibited me from advancing in my life. Once I had a support system, it was easy to be who I wanted to be. Don’t be afraid to get involved with the gay community and take advantage of the Ohio State resources for LGBT students. I went to first-year LGBT cohort for my first year and it helped me to meet some of my best friends. There are amazing support systems available to you, and using these systems will really help in the coming out process. If you don’t want to use university resources, there are so many people around you who can help as well!

College is a time of so much change, and sometimes that change can be difficult. But with the amazing resources at Ohio State and the level of acceptance at the university, there will always be someone by your side to support you in your decisions. Above all, remember that life is a gift and there is no need to waste the gift living somebody else’s life. Just be the best you that you can be!

P.S. If you are straight and reading this, make sure to always be supportive to friends coming out and questioning their sexual orientation – it makes all the difference to them.

 

 

10 People You’ll Meet During Your First Year

As a student at The Ohio State University, you have already been exposed to the impressive range of diverse people on our campus. From Orientation to Move-In Day to your 8 a.m. class, you have surely met a cast of characters unlike anything you’ve ever encountered before.

The best part of this variety of people is that each one has something important to teach you.

Here’s a look at 10 people you’ll meet during your first year and will have a lasting impact one way or another.

1. Your Orientation Buddy

Chances are you made at least one friend at summer orientation. Regardless of whether you’re still close, this person taught you the importance of acceptance during your early days in your new home. You probably even still see your orientation pals around campus, and you’ll never forget their companionship.

2. The Roommate(s)

Most first-year students who are living on campus have an unforgettable roommate experience (good or bad). Living in a room with 1-4 total strangers is an experience you may never have again. This relationship will teach you how to interact and live with others. Guaranteed you’ll learn a lot about yourself, as well as understanding where others come from and how they live.

3. The Resident Advisor

You might have the “cool RA” or the strict one. Some want to be your friend. Others are extremely professional. In the end, having an older peer on your floor can only help you. Ask them for advice (they’ll love it). Your RA is a resource that should not be ignored.

4. The Class Friend

This friend might only stick around for a semester, but they’re important. You’ll sit in your unofficial assigned seats together, bond by complaining about homework, and study together. Always make a friend in your classes, especially if you’re ever sick and have to miss a day. This friend also might show up again down the road, so making connections is always helpful.

5. The Overachiever

You and your class friend might despise this person. The overachiever raises their hand to answer every question in class. They remind the professor about an assignment that they might have forgotten they even assigned. Take my advice: don’t mock this person. You’re in college as a student, and you could learn from their pep and knowledge.

6. The Smart Slacker

This is the friend who miraculously get As on every exam, yet (seemingly) barely lifts a finger to study. This friend might not even attend class. You might boil with rage when you do poorly on an exam that you studied for all night, while this friend got a full eight hours of sleep. There’s nothing you can do about their abilities, but you can learn not to stress too much over grades. You can only do your best. Ask this friend for help – maybe there’s a method to their (apparent) slacking.

7. The Mentor

The benefits of a mentor are endless. They could be your Orientation Leader, RA, adviser, older friend in a student organization, or a friend from high school also at Ohio State now. They’ve been in your shoes and know the tricks of the trade to ensure success in college. Get coffee or a meal with them – your mentor will give you invaluable advice and guide you through any problems you encounter.

8. The Buckeye For Life

We’re all Buckeyes for life, but you will meet that friend who bleeds Scarlet and Gray. They only own Ohio State apparel, paint up for athletic events, and secretly aspire to get either the lyrics to “Carmen, Ohio” or a Block “O” tattooed somewhere on their body. You could learn a thing or two from this buckeye. Absorb their school spirit. It is one of the best aspects of going to Ohio State, and there is nothing else like it.

9. The Unforgettable Professor

The academic professionals at this university are incredible. By enrolling in a wide range of courses during your first year, mainly because of that GE curriculum, you just might encounter an inspiring professor. For me, it was a yoga instructor teaching a Gen. Ed. course about the body and mind. If you actively listen and learn from them, you might learn more than what seems like monotonous facts memorized just to ace an exam.

10. The True Friend(s)

Whether you meet them during Welcome Week or studying for finals, true and good people will emerge during your first year. They are there to eat with you at KComm, talk you through your emotional troubles, and support you when you change your major for the third time (or maybe that’s just me). Friendships are constantly changing, but you will be forever indebted to the people who become your people during one of the most important and challenging years of your life.

You’ve got a friend in me,

Dylan MacDowell