Adventure is Out There….

It’s crazy to think that three years of college are over.  Over the course of the past few months after spring break things were a blur. Galas, Spring Fest, finals, and then Graduation. I can’t believe that just a few weeks ago, I said goodbye (for now) to a few of my closest friends as they left Buffalo and went onto their next part of their lives.  It is strange to think that I won’t see as many familiar faces on campus, and that if I go back to visit high school I won’t know anyone there.

On the bright side, I am spending another summer up here in Buffalo furthering my career, by interning at a chemical plant. My roommate for the summer is the same girl that I roomed with freshman year! Its been two years since we have roomed together, but clearly we liked each other enough to room again as I intern and she takes gross anatomy. There are so many activities in Buffalo during the summertime, such as free concerts down by Canalside every Thursday, Food and Art festivals almost every weekend, minor league baseball games, and food truck Tuesdays.

Aside from that aspect of my life, I have recently been accepted into the combined engineering -mba 5-year program here at UB. This means that I will be a full-time MBA student starting in the fall and will get both degrees in 2017.  I will be pursuing Operations & Supply Chain Management and Consulting as my concentrations. There is already so much that I have to do for the program; I actually have homework/tests/quizzes due periodically throughout the summer!

However, I am excited for the new adventures that are out there for me. In fact, this will be my last blog post as I will be taking on new things in the fall.  It’s been wonderful sharing my stories over the past year, and I hope everyone enjoyed  reading them and felt informed about the school.

Play a Sport, but not D1? NO PROBLEM

UB is a Division 1 sports school, which in many ways is great! There are a lot of people who come with athletic talent, and creates a great atmosphere at the games. However, there are many students who attend UB who played sports in high school, but can’t be a part of the  division 1 athletics here at UB. This is where joining a club sport or becoming a part of intramurals comes into play.

Club sports are a part of the Student Association and range from Lacrosse to Ultimate Frisbee. They are funded by SA, and play against other competitive teams.  Joining a club sport is a great way to meet new people, especially during your first year at UB. During my first year, I joined the Club Ski Racing team. I had been a competitive ski racing since the third grade, and thought it would be a great idea to continue my passion.  However, after the first season, I stopped due to wanting to focus more on academics and other pursuits that interested me.

Intramurals is hosted by UB Athletics and offers a wide variety of recreational activities for students, faculty and staff to participate in. The sports range from 2 hand touch football to volleyball. To participate there is a team fee, and teams play a round robin tournament against other teams at UB. My freshman year I played on a 2-hand touch football team and it was a lot of fun. We weren’t a very good team, but we got some fond memories out of it. This spring, I will be joining a soccer team. Our team consists of four men and four women. I am excited to start soccer back up since the last time I played on a team was sophomore year of high school.

Being a part of a club sport or intramurals helps makes our campus be a community. I am grateful to attend a campus with so many different opportunities.


For all UB undergraduate student, games are free. All you have to do is show up with your UB ID CARD, and present it when you arrive at the game. Everything that you need is on your UB ID card. It basically becomes your life here on campus.

This past Friday I attended the UB Mens Basketball game against Kent State. Not only was this going to be a MAC Division game, but it was to be shown on ESPN as well. To make sure that tons of students came to support the team, UB True Blue started this promotion a few days before everyone was to come back to campus. UB True Blue is  the one of the many Student Association clubs here on campus. They strive to boost ub pride around campus and get students to attend athletic games.

10931325_883814071640464_8345314364194559559_nThis was different from previous games that I had attended in the past, as every student that went would be entered into a raffle for free Tuition.  The game was amazing! It was great to see so much UB Pride as we cheered our UB bulls onto victory. Now we are #1 in the MAC Conference and have high hopes to make it to March Maddness this year. I can’t wait to attend more basketball games this season.


Back at it

Finally back from the long break! Let me update you on a few things that have been happening in my life since Finals Week.

1) Internship! Yup, I am officially a Junior Process Engineer at Saint-Gobain, and will be balancing working for the company and classes. In the engineering department, if you receive an internship, you can get credit for it by making sure to complete some of the requirements after approval.

2) Which means no more Late Night UB for me :( Sadly with balancing a classes with an internship doesn’t allow me enough time to work for Late Night. I will miss the friends that I have made there, but will always keep in touch with them.

Aside from those two facts, this week is syllabus week! I am quite excited for some of the classes that I will be taking this semester. I am also excited for all the upcoming UB Events that will be coming up: Basketball games, Winterfest, Speaker Series, Springfest, and of course Oozefest!

As the semester goes on, I’ll make sure to keep you updated on all this great stuff!

Do you want to build a snowman…..

Snow Day! Snow Day!

I am sure that all of you have been hearing about the Lake Effect happening in Buffalo right now. Here at UB, things have been running as usual until a few hours ago when we all got the alert that class and activities would be canceled for Thursday! Personally, I view this as an opportunity to get work done earlier than I would have been able to, catch up on sleep, and get things in order for Thanksgiving Break!

I hope that everyone else who is being affected by the snow more than us is staying safe and warm!

That Final Stretch until Finals Week

In a month from now, I will have taken my last final and be on my journey home for Winter Break. I can’t believe that I am almost mid-way into my junior year. There is only a week and a half until Thanksgiving Break and then after that last week of classes before finals. However, I am definitely starting to feel that slump of going to classes and barely paying attention especially when waking up to a few flurries this morning.

How does one get out of this slump? The Answer: It is different for every person. I know, so useful but in reality what might work for me may not work for other people. For me, it’s taking advantage of the free time that I have just to relax. I do this by making plans with friends that I haven’t seen in awhile and just hanging out. Talking to people, and being around other people energizes me. I then transfer that energy over to throwing myself into my work and re-exciting my self for classes.

Looking ahead and thinking of all the wonderful things in the future helps me a lot too. This includes having a wonderful Thanksgiving Dinner, going Black Friday shopping, and finally going home (I haven’t been home since June) after Finals are over.  Thinking of these things, helps motivate me to get my work done, and pa more attention in classes to make sure that I end the semester strong.

For other people, taking that time to relax could include napping, watching tv/movies, going to the gym, eating comfort food, etc. You have to find that balance in your life so that everything doesn’t stress you out.

Let Them LOL :)

***This week, I am going to take the time to blog about a charity that is very important to me. This is not directly related to UB***

My first year at UB, I was a part of Leadership House, a living and learning community for thirty lucky freshman. As part of the requirements for being in the program, we had a mandatory 25 community service hours to complete every semester. One of the girls who lived across from me, Mary Beth (soon to be sophomore roommate and close friend) had family that was involved in an organization that was located in Buffalo. Thus, I and many others were introduced to Let them LOL. Let them LOL works to raise money to build wells in Sierra Leone in order to provide fresh water to the communities over there. After volunteering a few times, we got to participate in their 3rd Annual Water Gala and it was truly an amazing experience. Flash forward two years, and this past weekend I volunteered for the 5th Annual Water Gala.

Looking back at the first year, there have been so many changes to the gala: bigger venue, supporting an orphanage, and more volunteers to name a few. Everyone who is a part of LOL are volunteers, and each year I have seen more passion to making every aspect better. The student volunteers are known as Water Ninjas led by Jason and Jessica Papas during the Gala. This year, three years of Leadership House represented as Water Ninjas, no longer trying to fulfill a requirement.

The three years of LH

The three years of LH

All of us got to the venue, located in downtown Buffalo, at 8:30 AM to start setting up for this year;s gala. There were two very prominent parts of the decorations that really stuck out to me. The first was the lego wall that two Children had come up with and made representing the 4000 children that die every day from lack of water. Every single lego piece was donated along with another donation to a well. In the picture above you can see part of the lego wall, but this picture captures it better:

Lego Wall

Lego Wall

The second part that I felt was very inspiring was the experience that we built that guests would walk through when they first entered the gala. I can’t describe in words how beautiful it was and can show you through this picture:


After many hours of working on the set-up, all the volunteers helping out at the gala changed and learned our positions for the night. There are many different ways in which someone can donate money to the organization throughout the night.  First, there are the three different auctions: Chinese Auction, Silent Auction, and the Live Auction. Second, you could purchase special LOL merchandise (changes every year) and items made in Sierra Leone. Third, there are donation slips on the tables for attendees to donate during dinner. Throughout the night, the ninjas are very busy working the auctions and the merchandise table, but we do get a break to see the presentation during the dinner.

The presentation told the story of LOL through videos of homages from the Board members and footage from the trips made to Sierra Leone every three months.  One quote that stuck out was ” We empower those experiencing an unjust suffering by providing them with basic resources a community here with a  community there”. LOL doesn’t just build wells for the communities, but LOL actively checks up on each community during each trip, provides maintenance for the wells,  and opened a children’s home for orphans. It is amazing to see how far LOL has come from starting out with just selling ringtones of one of the co-founder’s laugh to raise money.

I am grateful becoming a part of Leadership House , because I got to become a part of such a wonderful organization. I have formed close relationships with not only other students, but the board members of LOL as well. My goal one day is to go on one of the trips to Sierra Leone. My advice for anyone who wants to come to UB is to get involved with something you are passionate  about. Not everything has to be something on campus, but could be in the community as well .

For more information about Let them LOL visit their website here:


This is Halloween, Halloween, Halloween

A little late with this post, but it has been a very busy past two weeks for me! Starting on October 17th, my favorite time of work rolled around, the construction of the Haunted Union. As part of my job with Late Night UB, we spend two weeks construction our 9-room Haunted House for UB Students to go into throughout October 30th and 31st.

Before we actually began to build the Haunted Union, my staff and I had the opportunity to go to Fright World for research. With a Fright World admission, you can go into five different Houses. Some of these house occur every year such as Phobias and Asylum, whereas the other ones can change from year to year based on how popular they were. There are also different levels to how scary each haunted house is starting with Phobias as the first level, and slowly increasing. It was a lot of fun, and I am glad that I got to bond with my staff even further.

For my room this year, I worked on a Nightmare Before Christmas theme. My partner and I split the room into two parts so that one side captured the Christmas part of the movie, and the other side the Halloween side of the movie. Since we were the first room, our plan was to split up the groups that come through so that they go down one path of the other.  I wish I had taken a picture of the room to show all of you. It looked amazing! The other rooms this year that were included in the Haunted Union were a Butcher room, a Asylum, Zombie Room, Clown Room, Mad Scientist, Mummy Room, Witch Room, and ended with a Possession Room.

My staff couldn’t build the Haunted Union on our own. Many volunteers come out and join us throughout the entire construction and to actually scare students as well. Most volunteers return every year, because it is so much fun putting everything together. It is great to have all these people because everyone has a creative aspect in them, and it helps make the Haunted Union better than if it was just my staff.

These past two years, I have spent my Halloween scaring people, and I wouldn’t change anything.

Post-Haunted Union PIcture!

Post-Haunted Union PIcture!

Wes Moore, a New York Times Best Seller. Wes Moore, a hardened criminal.

Two Wednesday, I had the opportunity to attend this year’s UB  Reads Distinguish Speaker.  The Distinguish Speaker Series invites writers, politicians, comedians, celebrities, and more to our school to talk about their journey while giving advice to all of those who attend. About six to eight speakers are invited each year and admission is free for all undergraduate UB Students. The UB Reads speaker is chosen carefully as his or her book is distributed to all the incoming freshman during their orientations over the summer, and in the fall to the rest of the UB Students. This year’s book was The Other Wes Moore, by Wes Moore.  The books tells of the story of two men named Wes Moore who grow up with similar background,  but the decisions that they made influenced their lives to one becoming a New York Times Best Seller and the other a hardened criminal.

Since I have been a Peer Mentor for UBE 101 this past semester, my instructor and I told our class that if everyone attended Wes Moore’s speech that we could cancel class during the week of Thanksgiving. My students at first did not understand why we were requiring them to attend, but all of them did end up showing up. I don’t think they realized how many people actually attend the distinguish speakers series as we walked into Alumni Arena.  Before Wes Moore came out to speak, Matt Weigand, director of the Orientation, Transition, and Parent Programs Office, and my friend Jake Caldwell spoke to introduce the speaker that night. When I saw my friend on stage, I was so proud!!! Introducing the Distinguish Speaker is a huge leadership role and he did amazing!

Wes Moore was truly an inspiration! He was able to mix telling his story with humor, motivation, and seriousness. One off the most memorable parts of the speech was how he stressed that you are more than your major. It is not what major you have, but what you do with it. The best part is the fact that all of my students stayed until the end of the speech and Q&A. Afterwards, my students were even posting our our facebook group how glad they were that my instructor and I had forced them to go. I am glad that they learned so much and enjoyed such a great opportunity.

The Distinguish Speaker series, is one of the many great activities offered here at UB. I have been fortunate enough to attend at least one Distinguish Speaker each year.

A Different Kind of Leadership

Over the course of this past semester, I have been a Peer Mentor for UBE 101. UBE 101 is a 1-credit course that first-year students take during their first semester to help make the transition between high school to college easier.  Such topics would include How to get Involved, The UB Reads book for that year, How to Register for Classes, and Academic Success. Additionally, it gives first-year students and opportunity to get to know a faculty member on campus, in case they need a reference in the future. As a Peer Mentor, I am partnered with an instructor and serve as an additional resource for the students.

Instructors and Peer Mentors have the ability to request who they would want to partner up with for their class. Since I had made close connections with one of m y bosses in Student Life, Kerry Spicer, we requested each other. Each peer mentor can chose how involved they want to be in their class. Since Kerry and I already had such a close relationship, I am actually co-teaching the class with her. In these duties, we create the lesson plan together , I host mid-semester meetings with my students, and grade papers that the students have submitted. This has been a very different leadership experience then any of my other activities that I have done. I am taking on more responsibility and practice my public speaking skills every week.

Since I am an engineering major, I have a class full of engineering. Most of them are computer science, and I even have one lone soul who is a pre-pharmacy major. They are a very lively bunch, and I enjoy seeing them make UB more of their home every week.  One of my goals as a peer mentor, is to not have them fear reaching out to me if they want to talk about anything or have any concerns.

Aside from teaching my own class, I also take a 3-credit class called UBE 495 Supervised Teaching. Every week, I meet with other peer mentors and an instructor from the Orientation, Transition, Parent & Programs office to talk about the up and downs from our respective classes. Not only do we give advice to each other, but we learn about how to be better peer mentors as well. One of our main projects is doing a 20 minute presentation on a lesson that we will be teaching to our students.

Overall, being a Peer Mentor has been a great Leadership Opportunity so far, With half a semester left, I can’t wait to see where this adventure will take me!

Note: If you are interested in this opportunity, please know that applications for the positions are up in the Springtime. You must be an incoming Sophomore level or higher to apply.