I’m not gonna lie – college isn’t easy. I am a journalism student and also the editor-in-chief of WSU’s student newspaper, The Winonan, and as with any college major, there will be times when you think you have your future figured out and you’re on the right track. Then there are times where you wonder why you even chose this major and how you’re going to make a living.
This past weekend, three Winonan staff members and I attended the ACP/CMA Summer Workshop in Minneapolis, which included 220 students from 78 schools and 36 states. The conference consisted of different workshops and I attended the Future of Digital Journalism track. I not only gained new ideas for our paper at the workshop, but I also took away a handful of tips to apply to my college career. These tips and life lessons are definitely applicable to any student in college, whether your major is journalism, math, psychology or nursing – whatever your future career, there’s no doubt you will endure roadblocks, struggles and doubts. Here are 7 things to keep in mind and follow while in college and beyond:
1) Embrace constraints and work with what you have
In our workshop we discussed how newspapers are often limited and constrained by budgets and the ever-changing industry. But despite these challenges, you need to work with what you have and make the most of your resources and abilities. The same goes for living in college – you may not always have everything you want, like a photographic memory, air conditioning in your place or a strong WiFi connection, but it’s important to embrace these restrictions and make the most out of your situation. You may need to make adjustments in life, but in the end everything works out and you need to be resourceful.
2) Work hard to get where you want to be
In the journalism field, more often than not you’re going to have to work your way up from the bottom. After college you’ll probably start out working the smaller jobs such as reporting for a small-town newspaper or being part of a team that works on social media – whatever direction you want to take your mass communication degree, you will still have to work hard for where you want to end up career-wise. In any situation in life or in a career, you need to have a goal and work towards it. Nothing comes easy, and having career goals will keep you grounded, motivated and focused.
3) Be careful what you post
This is so crucial while you’re in college. During the conference, one of the advisors from a Texas college newspaper began telling my staff members and I about a controversial Snapchat video of a fraternity one of the Texas reporters saw, and how the paper was probably going to use that video to support a a follow-up article. This is the perfect example of how students need to be mindful of what they’re posting on social media in college. I know this has been preached to you before, but it is true that you don’t know who is really looking at your posts, and these viewers may include future employers or current professors and bosses. Just be aware!
4) Don’t box yourself in
As mentioned above, when it comes to pursuing a career in journalism, it’s important to remember that you may not be doing exactly what you dreamed you’d be doing right away. If your interests lie with writing, you may have to work with video at some point. If you’re into videography, you may have to work with photos. It’s important not to be narrow minded heading into a journalism career, or any career. This goes for the college experience as well. Be diverse, be open to new ideas and push your limits. You’ll get farther in life if you’re open and can adapt.
5) Never stop learning
The ACP/CMA Workshop is a perfect example of this! Even though it’s summer break and The Winonan doesn’t resume printing until September, our staff continues to learn and better our publication by attending this conference yearly. In college, make the effort to teach yourself a few things along the way that will benefit you in the future. Remember, learning does not cease after you graduate. You’ll constantly be learning new things in your career and teaching yourself along the way can only help you get to where you want to be.
6) Don’t be afraid of change
In the ever-changing journalism industry, communication tools and media platforms will never stay the same for too long. That means you can’t be afraid of change as a journalist. This follows the two preceding points; you need to be open to this change and learn how to adapt. The same goes for in life. In college, you’re going to be going through tons of changes with friends, family and who you are as a person. You’ll discover new things about yourself and deal with situations you’ve never come across before. College changes you, and you shouldn’t be afraid of this change. Change is a good thing, and it can lead you to amazing experiences and relationships.
7) Make memories
As a journalist, you want to make people remember what you write, produce, photograph, etc. It’s about telling stories to last a lifetime, and that’s what college is all about as well. Make mistakes and bold decisions and you’ll create and share memories with people you can tell for years after you graduate. So do something different and try something new – write your own story and carry it with you forever.
As my freshman year at Winona State came to a close, I started to reflect on all the special opportunities I received and memories I had made just from getting involved here on campus. I can’t count how many times before my freshman year I heard, “Get involved on campus!” or “Join a club, there’s so many!” I began to doubt the idea because I thought I’d be too busy and that I’d meet enough people on my own so I didn’t see a strong of point. But, the suggestion to join something and get involved was one of the best pieces of college advice I have received. Saying that, and having one year of college under my belt, I’ve listed 5 tips to getting involved on campus for incoming freshmen this year, and even for upperclassmen!
1) Go to the club fair
There are countless options for clubs for your major, minor, or just something you simply like. With all the clubs on campus you’re bound to find the perfect fit for your personality and what you enjoy. This year’s club fair is Saturday, August 20 from 1-3pm, so be sure to attend and see what WSU has to offer you!
2) Get involved
I know you have heard this before, but I will say it again because it is that important. I met the most people in activities I got involved in – not so much in my classes or even my dorm. Even if you haven’t gotten involved so far in college it doesn’t mean it’s too late! Or if you’re unsure about it at first just give it a shot. You don’t want to look back when it’s too late after graduating and regret not trying something out. So go to the club fair, keep an eye out for posters on campus, announcements on digital signs and all other ways to learn about new opportunities!
3) Do something out of your comfort zone
You might feel a little uneasy going outside your comfort zone by joining something new with new people, but that does not mean you shouldn’t go for it! You could very well thank yourself later for joining. I know not one small part of me regrets getting involved here.
4) Look for unique experiences
Depending on the club or organization you join, there is something that sets it apart from the next. They could give you a once in lifetime experience, awesome experience in your desired career field, rare chances, etc. Most of all, joining a club on campus will allow you to make friends that have similar interests as you. This will make for lifelong relationships and memories.
5) Keep an open mind
Having the chance to get involved may spark a fire inside of you for a passion you didn’t know you had. You can meet a variety of people from different backgrounds and learn from their perspectives. Being apart of a group can help you grow your voice, communication, and leadership skills. Also, it’s important to be open to new experiences and attitudes when searching for a club to join or organization to get involved in because you never know what you might like until you try it (just like moms tend to preach!).
I will continue to tell every freshman and friend of mine that hasn’t yet gotten involved on campus to join something that interests them or is something they’d usually never do. The experiences and friends you can gain have already drastically heightened my college experience thus far.
Everybody has a favorite food. Pasta, burgers, curry, sushi…. anything is a good choice. However, the real king of the food world is the sandwich. While they’re certainly tasty, they also serve as utensil-less vehicles of flavor. In Winona, there’s plenty of choices to fill that empty hole in your stomach. Based off of my taste testing, these are the five local sandwiches that fill it best:
1) Sunflower Veggie – Blue Heron Coffeehouse
Typically, vegetarian sandwiches tend to be a little boring. Either the sauce doesn’t give it enough flavor, or the veggies are cheap and plastic-y, or there just isn’t enough going on in the sammie to give it that kick of flavor. The Sunflower Veggie, however, is perfection. The mix of their herbed cream cheese, sprouts, and the grainy bread makes for some stellar grub.
2) Hummus BLT on Cranberry Bread – Blooming Grounds
This one, at first, makes no sense as a sandwich. Garlic hummus? With Bacon? And Cranberries? Nah, that can’t work. Well you know what, it totally does. The bacon and hummus give a much needed salty side to the sweet cranberry bread. Plus, they throw it through a panini press so you know it’s going to be good. Paninis are always good.
3) Full Combo – The Acoustic Cafe
This one’s a doozy! Acoustic’s warm sandwiches are always great, but the Combo takes it a bit further. Four kinds of meats, lettuce, tomato, peppers and the best sauce you could hope to ask for. Just be sure to go all out and get the full size. You’re gonna need it.
4) Cowboy Chicken on Focaccia – Winona Sandwich Company
This is a bit more specific than the others, seeing that I’ve been working on perfecting this for three years. The Cowboy chicken on it’s own is alright, but on focaccia bread it’s miraculous. Add in some sprouts, pico de gallo, lettuce, tomato and extra hot sauce and you’ve got a spicy piece of grub you’ll want to consume in perpetuity.
5) Turkey Aioli Sandwich – Bluff Country Co-op
The final, and most simplistic sandwich on the list, is the definition of “comfy.” The Co-op’s Aioli is pretty stellar, and when mixed with the turkey adds up to another super good sammie. The only downside is it’s only sold every so often, so you’ll have to keep your eyes open for it!
Many refer to Winona as a “college town,” so people assume Winona must be a ghost town during the summer when all the of the college students head in various directions. However, there is still a lot of activity in Winona during the summer months – especially on Winona State’s campus! This is because Winona State hosts many different camps and conferences over the summer and invites individuals of ranging age groups with varying interests on campus.
So, don’t think once college students conclude classes in the spring that campus is bleak and empty awaiting the return of students in the fall. A few camps have already taken place this summer such as Lego Mindstorms, Grandparents University and Summer Jazz Workshop. Learn about the types of camps and campers that are scheduled to inhabit campus the remaining months of summer while you are (most likely) gone:
H.O.P.E Academy (June 22 – July 2) – An important camp held on campus over the summer, H.O.P.E stands for Harnessing Opportunities for Post-Secondary Education Academic and Leadership Academy. The organized event gives underrepresented high school students the opportunity to experience college life by participating in college courses and workshops while staying on campus in a residence hall.
Scrubs Camp (June 26 – July 1) – During this camp, high school students get to explore career fields in healthcare while staying in the residence halls. After a day of learning about the healthcare field, campers spend their evenings playing volleyball and hanging out with fellow campers.
College For Kids (July 11 – 14) – This is one of the bigger events and takes place in many of the buildings on campus during the summer. Students in grades third through eighth participate in a full day of 90-minute lectures 0n a range of topics including math, science, language arts, social studies, art, music and more! On the final day of College For Kids, students will graduate and receive their certificates during a commencement ceremony in East Hall.
Camp Explore (July 24 – 29) – This camp is for high school students and explores a range of STEM-industry career fields which include engineering, healthcare, agriculture, transportation and more!
Camp Invention (August 1 - 5) – Students in grades first through sixth engage in activities which encourage 21st century learning skills as they work in teams to problem-solve real-world challenges.
Lastly, there are numerous athletic camps offered throughout the summer including football, soccer, volleyball, basketball and cross country! The athletic department hosts these camps. More information about the athletic and academic summer camps are available online.
It’s also important to point out that the Great River Shakespeare Festival takes over Winona during the summertime. Not only are the plays performed at the Perfoming Arts Center on campus, those who particapte in GRSF live in East Lake over the summer.
Hopefully you now feel more in the loop of what happens on campus in the summer!
It’s June Registration Week, and as future Warriors, you are stepping on the grounds of your home to-be. Welcome!
As you make your way around campus, be sure to look for Wazoo in the lower hyphen of Kryzsko Commons between 11 and 12:30 this week and get your picture taken! Then, share your Wazoo picture to Instagram, Twitter or Facebook using #WarriorFresh, and you could win a cool prize. The three winners will be announced Monday morning in the Class of 2020 Facebook group. Please make sure your privacy setting is set to public or message your photo to WSU’s Facebook page if you prefer not to change your privacy setting.
Happy Registration Week!
As either an incoming freshman or a current student who is in search of a new job in Winona, it can be hard to find work that is close by and flexible with your school schedule during the year and vacations in the summer. Well, as an assistant in Web Communications on campus, I can say that applying for jobs on campus is the way to go! There are so many perks to having a campus job, and many times students overlook this option when searching for work. Here are 6 reasons why you should look into positions on campus:
1) You can utilize your major and continue to learn
As a college student working towards your degree, it’s hard to snag a job that applies to what you are currently studying. On campus there are positions available that allow you to put the knowledge you are gaining to use! My major is journalism, and my roles as a web communication assistant allow me to write and edit on multiple platforms. My job on campus has taught me a lot! For example, if you are going for a public relations major, there are students who work for PR on campus; if you’re pursuing a major in computer science or the like, a job in tech support would be perfect.
2) Your job is in walking distance from your place
If you’re a student and have a job on campus that means you must be in walking or biking distance from work! Unless you commute to Winona State for classes, of course. In the summer I try to rollerblade to Somsen Hall every day where I work since I’m so close. Also, you save a lot of time not having to run back and forth from classes to an off-campus job – you’re able to just go right from class in one building to work in another.
3) Campus jobs are the most understanding about school/class obligations
As a student, your education is what should take priority over a job. Campus jobs understand this and are the most understanding about needing to tweak your schedule given finals week or a week filled with projects. Obviously your campus job is still important, but if you communicate with your boss they are extremely understanding!
That’s right, you are often given free food. Student appreciation potlucks are held during the year and people aren’t afraid to bring in snacks to the office. For instance, this summer there is one day a month where free coffee, juice and donuts will be handed out at the gazebo to all employees and student workers.
5) There’s no requirement to work over school breaks
You can choose whether or not you want to work over spring, winter or summer breaks. This is especially nice if you land an internship one summer and want to return to your campus job when school resumes.
6) You meet great people your age
As a student worker, you’re surrounded by coworkers your age. You meet fellow students and have the opportunity to create great friendships. I’ve met a ton of amazing people who have turned into close friends through my campus position.
If you’re interested in working a job on campus, visit Warrior Jobs for available positions!
We all have our go-to spot for a meal or just quick bite, but even a favorite place can get too routine. Well, Warriors, I’m excited to bring to you a list of eateries on campus that are being built or improved!
1) Coffee & Bagels in the library
If you haven’t already heard, Darrell W. Krueger Library on campus will be adding an Einstein Bros Bagels and Caribou Coffee to offer Coffee & Bagels. The new spot, located to the right of the first floor upon entering the library, will be open to students and the Winona community this fall. Read more about this cool addition in The Winonan!
2) Jack Kane Dining Center revamped
Winona State is currently constructing a new and improved cafeteria! If you’re wondering what’s going on behind the walls of wood surrounding the dining area on campus, Chartwells explains that the new area will have an open concept space that allows for smoother traffic flow and more space between stations for guests to walk around, a made-to-order menu and a wide variety of foods. The dining center will also have a dedicated allergen-free zone! This new and improved eatery will be finished by the start of fall semester.
3) Somsen Hall Caribou transformation
Mugby Junction in Somsen Hall will close June 23rd and transform into We Proudly Brew Caribou. This spot will offer Caribou Coffee favorites along with expanded seating and a fresh look.
Along with these great projects that are underway on campus, the city of Winona is also adding a few more spots to eat! Right now, Ocean Sushi is now open on Gilmore Ave. and offers Japanese and Thai food. In addition, Nate & Ally’s Frozen Treat Creations on East Third will be opening this month. An expansion to the Bluff Country Co-Op food market and a new Jimmy John’s is currently under construction as well.
Not that we don’t absolutely love Mugby and our Smaug right on campus for quick pick-me-up options, but what’s better than MORE options?! Einstein Bros. Bagels and Caribou Coffee are teaming up to bring the ultimate store to locations all over the country. And WSU campus is lucky enough to be one of the chosen locations! Next school year this addition will be added to the Darrell W. Krueger Library. Here are 8 reasons why this new addition is truly one to be thankful for.
1) Endless breakfast options
Breakfast is ready to fit everyone’s morning cravings from egg and cheese bagels, to muffins, scones and oatmeal. No matter what you enjoy starting your day with, it’ll be available!
2) Lunch just got a little more interesting
Hot sandwiches and cold sandwiches along with a choice of soup and salads will have you excited to indulge in your favorite meal. The options are endless whether you want veggies or your fill of bacon – it’ll be ready within minutes!
3) More than enough ways to get your caffeine fix
Between Mugby and Caribou, you are sure to find your favorite coffee, tea or smoothie. There’s no wrong turn when it comes to a morning or mid-day boost to get you through those long, busy weeks!
4) Need a snack? No problem
Whether your snack consists of a sandwich or a sweet treat, Einstein’s and Caribou are sure to give you exactly what you need!
5) Something new and refreshing
During those weeks when you feel like you live on campus, it’s always nice to have a change in what you consume, am I right? These added options will definitely make it easier to call campus “home!”
6) The changing menus keep you on your toes
As seasons come and go and menus change, there will often be new and improved items for you to try! It’s easy to get sick of the old stuff after a while, but be it no more as both stores have forever changing or limited time options that really just make for a better excuse to spend money!
7) Something for everyone
No matter the allergy, religious practice or personal diet, there is sure to be something for each and every student at Winona State. Growing options don’t mean to take away from our previous choices, but rather make more accommodations for those who need them!
8) Perks and points rewards
As poor college students, nothing screams louder than “free!” or “discount!” So take advantage of both Caribou and Einstein’s reward programs. You get free birthday rewards along with special discounts and savers throughout the year.
GET EXCITED PEOPLE!!! COFFEE AND BAGELS FOR DAYSSSSSS!
One of my biggest regrets from college is not recording my experiences. I started keeping a daily journal my junior year, and it’s fascinating reading through it again. It feels like I’m reading back in time and allows me to reflect on my experiences. Since journaling, I have started my own blog on WordPress, called Bizarre Brunette. I also blog for WSU’s blog (duh) and for Twin Cities Geeks. Blogging is one of my favorite stress-relieving hobbies and I have discovered how much I love to write. So if you have ever thought about starting a blog, but don’t know where to start, this post is for you!
The first step in creating a blog is figuring out the website you want to use. Tumblr is a rather common website to start out with. It’s really easy to create an account and it’s also really user friendly. I had a Tumblr at one point, but I ended up deleting it within a couple months. For me, Tumblr feels a little too much like a social media site versus a personal blog. So I suggest starting with Tumblr, but then moving to another website. I absolutely love WordPress (FYI: The WSU blogs use WordPress). WordPress is a little more complicated to use, but there are tutorials everywhere on how to do certain things. It’s free to create a blog, but you’re limited on blog layout options. I don’t pay for WordPress because I don’t have that many followers to make it worth it, but with time I may consider it.
The second step is choosing a name. I feel like this is the hardest part about blogging can be coming up with something creative and catchy. Also, changing your blog title is normal. I had first started out with the Geeky Iceskater. It felt wrong to me, but I’m not creative at all. My friend came up with the Bizarre Brunette and that title was quirky and perfect. Asking friends for help can give you some creative aspect into what your blog title should be.
Finally, make sure to share your blog! Part of the fun of blogging is knowing that people are reading it. I share my blog posts on Facebook & Instagram. I also am apart of a variety of different Facebook groups where I can share all of my new posts. Networking is the best way to get followers for your blog and to gain more views.
Blogging is a fantastic stress release and a great way to improve the quality of your writing. I highly recommend creating a blog because going to college for your undergrad only happens once. Don’t let memories fly by!
We’re at that point in the semester, Warriors! Classes are coming to an end and finals week is in view, whether you like it or not. That means it’s time to start studying for exams and writing essays even though motivation to do so winds down with the remaining days in April.
There are many tips available online that can help you better prepare for finals week and stay focused, but you hardly see a list of things you shouldn’t be doing. Here are 10 signs you’re not doing finals right, including signs you failed come finals week. What better way to illustrate these signs than with a little comic relief from Jim Carrey as Ace Ventura?
1) Stress eating
Many of us have already developed this dangerous habit, and it tends to intensify during the last few weeks of the semester.
2) You distract yourself and avoid studying
It doesn’t matter what the BuzzFeed post, Facebook share or YouTube video is about, you’re going to watch it – anything to avoid studying.
3) Nervous habits
Whether it’s gum chewing, biting your nails or tapping a pencil – you may pick up some weird or annoying habits as you cram for final exams and crank out essays.
4) Drinking loads of caffeine
You’ll find yourself wired from caffeine during your long days of studying.
5) You’re in need of some serious pet therapy
If you’re looking too forward to reuniting with your pet back home after finals week or freak out a little extra when seeing a dog on campus, you may need to re-establish yourself.
6) You’re on the brink of a nervous breakdown
You may feel like you’re losing your mind with your long to-do list, all of the stress and lack of sleep.
7) Taking out your frustration and stress on others
Come finals week, a short temper and displaced aggression are sure signs you didn’t do finals right. This may result in being sassy towards friends and having negative thoughts towards your professors when they pass out your final exams. But it’s not their fault!
8) When you just accept your fate heading into finals week
You know you haven’t studied enough and just decide to wing it.
9) You don’t the answer to the first question on your final exam
The moment of terror when you look at the first question on the final exam.
10) Excessive celebration
If you notice you’re a little too excited after finishing finals, that may be an indicator you didn’t do your final weeks of the semester quite right.
Be on the lookout for these warning signs and try to avoid them! Now, focus these last few weeks and rock your finals. You can do it!