Letter to my Freshman Year

Dear Freshman Year,

When I first came to Iowa I’m not going to lie you scared me. Being without my family so far away from home was something so new to me. 10 months later I want to say thank you.

Thank you for bringing me my best friends. Small dorm rooms and late nights have brought me friends that I will have for a lifetime. They are the people I want to spend every waking minute with. We never run out of things to talk about and continuously found ourselves on the floor of our halls laughing at the stupidest things. They are the people that know everything about me. They have become my Iowa family and I am forever grateful that we were brought together by Burge.

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Thank you for teaching me to push myself. When I graduated high school I thought I had learned everything there was to know about success. Then I came to college and it hit hard. Countless all-nighters and tears on the phone with my mom later I have learned just how strong I really am. I have learned that college is hard, but putting in the time and effort will pay off.

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Thank you for football. When high school ended so did my cheer career and anyone who knows me knows just how hard that was. But, because of Iowa my football withdrawals were short lived. I cannot describe the smile that I got on my face every time I was able to walk into Kinnick and be in my “happy place”. I cannot describe all the memories that I got to make in the 12-0 season that was my freshman year.

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Thank you for sisterhood. Being a part of Alpha Chi Omega has brought me more than I could ever imagine. Lifelong friends who I know I will have by my side no matter what, a passion for equality and domestic violence awareness, a new love for the color purple, a beautiful castle as a home and too memories to mention. Alpha Chi brings a smile to my face every day and I am forever grateful for the countless jokes in our group chat to the crazy mental breakdowns when we have been trapped in the house for what seems like days for recruitment practice. These 150 girls have truly become my sisters and I am so excited for countless more hours and memories together.

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Thank you for allowing me to grow as a person. When I came to college I was alone and had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. After spending a year in Iowa City I have become a person that I am becoming proud of. I have become an adult who has learned so much about what I want from life and where I am going. You have allowed me to become independent, you have taught me that it is ok to make mistakes as long as you learn from them, and you have taught me that everything you want is on the other side of fear. I have gained so much knowledge during my year as a freshman and I can’t wait to learn even more over my next three years at Iowa.

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Finally, thank you for helping me to create so many memories that I will cherish forever. The people I have met, and the things I have done have been amazing and I cannot describe just how in love with Iowa I am. A year ago I accepted this school, deciding to go out of my comfort zone and create new experiences and I can honestly say that it is the best decision I have made. I can’t wait for my next three years here where I know countless memories will be made.

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Until Next Year

Go Hawks!

Staying Healthy

The dreaded freshman 15. Every college knows about them, every college student wants to avoid them. Although I’m not one to stride away from a good cookie and spending a day in bed watching Netflix, there are some great options for working out and staying healthy on campus.

 

  1. The Wellness and Recreational Center

Located right in between the west and east side of campus, every student has easy access to the number 3 recreational center in the country. Whether you like to run on a track, use machines, or lift there is something for everyone. And if you are feeling a bit more adventurous there is a rock climbing wall and ample places to swim. You can even just stop by for a fresh and healthy smoothie, or some relaxing time floating around the lazy river. No matter what you are looking for the rec center has something for you

  1. Currier Gym

For those days where the rec center is just a bit too far, or if you are trying to squeeze in a quick workout, the miniature gym located in Currier is perfect for you. Although it doesn’t have the all the same amenities at the rec center, there is enough equipment to get in any work out you want to.

  1. Campus

Once you are through the rough winter and want a bit of sun and fresh air I might suggest going for a run around campus. No matter where you are located you can always find a beautiful trail to run. Whether it’s through the middle of downtown, along the winding river, or out in the beaten path at one of the local parks, fresh air and exercise is right out your front door.

  1. Group Classes

Back at the rec center, you can also attend group classes. Everything from early morning yoga and Zumba is provided and it is all for free. Whether you are an experienced yogi or trying a class for the first time they have levels and times for everyone.

  1. Field House

On the West side of campus there is another great option for working out. The field house has everything from a lap pool, too multiple basketball courts as well as a traditional weight room. It is a great place to head if you are looking for something a little less busy than the rec center.

No matter what type of workout you are looking for campus will have something for you. In reality one of the most important parts about college is maintain as much of a balanced life as possible. Although studies and weekends are important, having a healthy mind and body is so important. In the weeks leading up to finals I recommend taking time away from studies to get outside and get moving.

 

Good Luck with the last few weeks of studies!

 

Until Next Time

Go Hawks!

Where Did the Time Go?

Well hello there! Sorry I haven’t posted in a while. Coming back from Spring Break meant one thing, school is coming to an end. Crazy to say that my first year of college is almost over. It sounds cliché but I honestly still feel like I just moved in yesterday. Being here for five months I have learned a lot of things. Although I am no expert I thought I would share what I know now.

  1. It’s completely acceptable to not have your life together… Let me put it this way I have worn my minion slippers out in public on numerous occasions.
  2. You aren’t a morning person. No matter how early you used to get up for high school, college time is different. 8ams now feel like 4ams and 10:30 classes are almost still too early. My schedule next semester has been updated for this change.
  3. Iowa is good at football. I know we all know this but I thought I would just remind anyone reading. 12-0 regular season.
  4. Winter actually means winter. Even though people have told me that this is mild and I’m still surviving. Winter here is not 65 degree weather with sun. But, I’ll admit spinning around in the snow is still fun, even when people look at me like I’m crazy.
  5. Diploe-Dipole bonds are the second weakest bonds. This fact is courtesy of my roommate Mags Dull. You probably didn’t care about this and don’t actually find it important, but honestly neither do I.
  6. You WILL be broke. No matter how much money you have you are always broke. Especially at the beginning of the semester when you are pretty much taking out a mortgage to buy books.
  7. You will have the most amazing time ever. No matter where you go, the experiences you have will be second to none. I have been here for less than a year and I can say I have made lifelong friends (shout out again to Mags Dull) and have learned more than I could have imagined. The amount of growing up I have done here is substantial. I am so grateful for being able to have this experience and wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Until Next Time

Go Hawks!

 

 

15 Things to do as a Freshman

Less than 3 months from now I will no longer be a freshman. I am still in denial about how quickly this year has gone. Although it’s not over yet I have created a list of 15 things you have to do before your freshman year comes to a close. Many of these are do-able at every college but some are specific to the best university ever created (it’s Iowa if you didn’t know).

  1. Tailgating
  2. Go to a game at Kinnick
  3. Eat at both Burge and Hillcrest
  4. Have an all-nighter during midterms or finals
  5. Go to Java House
  6. Get a photo with Herky
  7. Go to kick-off @ Kinnick
  8. Take at least 1 class that isn’t required for your major
  9. Go to a $3 CAB movie
  10. Order pizza at 2am (Gumby’s or Mesa counts and is preferred)
  11. Cry over the cost of books at least once
  12. Touch the brain rock before an exam
  13. Shop local downtown
  14. Go to the museum at MacBride
  15. Wear pajamas to class or the dining hall

Until Next Time…

Go Hawks!

8 Things They Didn’t Tell me about Iowa Winters

Well hey there!

Up until a few months ago I didn’t even know there was such a thing as winter. If it got below 50 degrees in Southern California we went into a state of panic. Now, if it is 50 degrees I am getting ready to go tan. I guess you could say the Midwest has changed me. Even though the first thing I always heard when I told people I was going to Iowa was that it gets cold there, nothing prepared me for below zero temperatures and winds that could literally blow you away. So now that I am mostly accustomed to this fourth season, I thought I would share some tips and tricks.

  1. Buy a winter coat. Don’t be like me during the first few days and pretend that walking around in your denim jacket will keep you warm. You don’t look cool you just look like that crazy California girl who thought it would be fun to get frostbite.
  2. Get winter shoes, whether you are into Timberlands (whoop!) or Beanie Boots buy a pair. It’s much better to have a pair of those than to be minding your own business walking to class and then end up on the cold, snow covered concrete because your shoes didn’t have traction.
  3. Your ears will fall off… Ok, maybe kidding, but they will become numb
  4. Finding clothes to wear for a night out on the weekend is not easy. A dress and cute sandals just won’t cut it any more.
  5. They don’t cancel school for anything. Yeah sure, in high school you got snow days, in college you don’t even get blizzard days.
  6.  If you thought your motivation to go to 8am classes was hard in the fall, let me tell you it is 10x harder to get out of bed in the middle of winter. Mentally preparing yourself to roll out of your nice warm bed and face the arctic tundra outside is not easy
  7. Cabin Fever is real. I think the worst part of winter is that you really are stuck inside most of the time. It’s hard knowing just how nice it is to walk around campus and downtown Iowa City when it’s warm and not being able to do it. Walking around outside is a mode of transportation in winter not a causal stroll in the park.
  8. CAMBUS IS YOUR FRIEND. Remember Blue to Burge, Red to Rienow. Download the Bongo app and use it. Those buses will be the difference between you having 10 fingers at the start of spring and ending up with 8 because you lost a couple to the cold.

Hope this helps anyone,  who like me is completely inexperienced with the idea of winter. I also want to say that it really isn’t that bad. Yes, I just went on a six hour rant, but yes, I still love Iowa and the University more than anything, even when it is 80 degrees and sunny at home right now.

Until Next Time

Stay Warm Hawks!

Love Is…

Hey there, I hope everyone’s super bowl weekend went well! This week is very special for me and my sisters. As you may know I am in Alpha Chi Omega. Like everyone involved in Greek life we have a philanthropy that is close to our hearts. Alpha Chi Omega supports Domestic Violence Awareness. As a way for us to spread the word and help end domestic violence we are participating in healthy relationships week.

This week Alpha Chi is focusing on fostering healthy relationships in the hopes of ending domestic violence and sexual assault. All of this week we will be sharing pictures telling the world what love is to us. If you are currently at the University of Iowa I would highly recommend stopping by the Hubbard Commons in the IMU on Wednesday from 1:30 to 2:30 for our “Donut Let Love Hurt” event. You will be supporting a great cause, and what college student doesn’t want free donuts? If you are not at the University of Iowa, which I hope one day you will be, you can still participate in this amazing week. Using any social media platform of your preference, post a photo describing what “Love Is” to you and hashtag it with the #loveis and #healthyAXOrelationships

If you feel as strongly about ending this horrible thing as I do, then I hope you join Alpha Chi Omega in spreading the world.

Hope you continue to have an amazing week filled with love and joy.

Love Is

 

Until Next Time

Go Hawks!

 

Oh My AXO

Hi there! Welcome back to a new semester at the University of Iowa. As much as I loved break I am so happy to be home (don’t tell my mom I call it that). Last semester around the middle of November I joined a sorority. Unlike most people I didn’t go through normal rush, I went through open bidding instead.

When school first started I was on the fence about joining a sorority so I decided to wait as I was already overwhelmed with everything else that was going on at school. After settling in I realized that I regretted not joining. Luckily I was able to go through opening bidding and join Alpha Chi Omega or AXO. Looking back I am so happy I decided to join. I have only be a part of the group for a few months and it already feels like one giant family. Being able to not only meet girls in AXO but also people from other frats and sororities is amazing, it really helped me become more comfortable with college. Although I joined a sorority I don’t believe that Greek Life controls Iowa. We are one of those great universities that doesn’t “require” it. By that I mean that if you are not a part of Greek life you will still have the most amazing experience.

For anyone who is on the fence about joining a sorority I defiantly recommend doing open bidding or waiting until spring semester. It is a huge time and money commitment but if it is something you decide you want to do it will be one of the best experiences you will have!

 

Hope you have a great first few weeks of class hawks! Stay warm.

 

Until Next Time

Go Hawks!

0 to 11-0 Real Quick

Hey there! Hope the first snow of the season isn’t too bad for everyone, being from California this whole first snow thing is like a winter wonderland, but I’ve been told by numerous people that it will wear off quite quickly. Anyway, if you pay any attention to college football, especially Hawkeye football, you will know that our boys have had a season for the record books. With our first 11-0 season and the second undefeated home game season in our team’s history I could on and on about how magical it has been. Because I am a football fanatic you better believe I had season tickets so I thought I would share some of my favorite memories with you.

Illinois State (14-31): This was my first ever college football game and let me tell you it was hot. All I remember was that water was discounted and they didn’t want fans wearing black. It was about 100 degrees, but going and staying was completely worth it. When you hear Back in Black for the first time and watch the team take the field it is like nothing you have ever experienced before. I’m a country music girl and I never knew I could love an ACDC song as much as I love this one. The game was good football but the atmosphere is hands down what I will remember the most.

Iowa State (31-17): Although this was an away game I have to mention it because you know Beat State! I wish it was at home, but none the less the atmosphere in town was still amazing. What made it even better was it was a pretty close game until the very end. Being able to beat them this year after a loss last year made it that much better. I mean who doesn’t love a good state rivalry?

Pittsburg (24-27): You just have to look at the score to know this is going to be a good one. I could probably talk for hours about how amazing this game was. First off it was a night game. If you have ever been to football game at night you know there is just something about the lights that makes it that much better. What makes it even better was the theme. Having the black and gold spirit game on the same night made Kinnick look amazing. I thought I loved it before, but that night took it to a whole new level. But, even all that combined doesn’t beat the 57 yard field goal to win the game in the last seconds. Just imagine how different season would have been if we hadn’t have kicked it. I cannot put into words the roar that went off in the stadium the minute the refs put up their hands. I didn’t have a voice the next couple of days.

 North Texas (16-62): If I’m going to be honest I didn’t stay for this whole game. But hey I’m not going to turn down another Hawkeye win.

Illinois (20-29): So once again I can’t say much about this game. Even though it was homecoming I was at Notre Dame surprising my parents and visiting my brother which was an amazing experience in itself. I was able to go to the ND vs Navy game which has an amazing amount of history behind it and was a once in a life time experience, but I can safely say I missed Iowa City and the game day atmosphere. I may have some bias but Hawkeye traditions are the best!

Maryland (15-31): I ended up working at the concession stand to raise money for a club that I am a part of on campus. The atmosphere was just as amazing, but I am sad I couldn’t see the game

Minnesota (35-40): BLACKOUT BABY oh and I guess we kind of did go 10-0 too! This game was history and I’m so grateful I got to be a part of it. This night game was just as magical. And the fact that it was close made the victory that much sweeter. Spelling I-O-W-A long after the touchdown was scored and screaming 10-0 for 10 minutes after the game was won was the perfect way to celebrate

Purdue (20-40): To be honest, it was VERY cold. This game, although not the most exciting and to be honest not the best football we have played all season, was very special to me. My dad had surprised me the night before which was amazing in itself, but being able to show him how Hawkeyes do football is something I will never forget. Football has always been something my dad and I have shared ever since I started cheering and he would explain how the game worked so every time I was in my “happy place” at Kinnick I would think about how much my dad would love it. I am so happy he got to spell out Iowa and bounce to the beat of Back in Black with me. BUT, I do believe he will have to come back again when it’s not snowing and everyone is in town.

Football has always been something that I have loved. Ever since I was 10 it has been a huge part of my life, and when I stopped cheering at the end of high school I was afraid that I would miss being on the sidelines, but in all honesty being with the rest of my school in the stands watching history happen is better than any season I could have asked for. Being able to say this is how my freshman year was is amazing and I am so grateful for it. I know that the team puts countless hours in, so thank you to them! A lot of people have doubted the Hawks this season, and believed that we wouldn’t do it, but now we are 11-0 and going to the BIG10 championship. This is what happens when you have 30,000 Hawks standing behind you for every game. Can’t wait for Nebraska to see what happens next!

Until Next Time

Go Hawks!!!

7 Reasons not to go to Iowa

It’s crazy but it’s that time of year again. Seniors in high school are choosing their colleges and figuring out where they want to spend the next four years. So I thought I would help out and tell you 7 reasons on why you shouldn’t go the University of Iowa.

  1. The university squirrels: anywhere you go you will find squirrel friends. In California they won’t come near you but don’t be surprised if they walk right up to you when you go to class in the mornings. You may also see a little tail sticking out of a trashcan late at night. Sadly you won’t be seeing them in the winter but you won’t want to go out then anyway.
  2. It’s central: whether you are going into downtown Iowa City or taking the I-80 to Coralville or even Des Moines the university allows you to have a small town feel without feeling completely trapped. It sounds cheesy but you really do get the best of both words when you go to the university. Staying in town allows you to get the typical college campus feel, but going 10 minutes in any direction allows you to get away from it and experience another world.
  3. World Class Colleges: The University of Iowa is home to some of the best education in the country. With a nursing program ranked in the top 10 and a national ranking in the top 100 it’s no surprise why so many people chose to get their education here.
  4. 10-0: This doesn’t really even need an explanation. Who wouldn’t want to go to a university with an undefeated football program and some history making statistics?
  5. Weekends: Let’s just say there is an adventure around every corner.
  6. Java House: Who needs Starbucks coffee when Iowa City has its very own personal coffee shop? Java House is central to town and the perfect place to cozy up in a giant leather chair and study. Every college town has Starbucks, but only Hawks have Java.
  7. Herky: I won’t lie we have the best mascot around. Herky is the homeboy and the amount of selfies you will get with him around campus, will assure at least one perfect insta pic.

Ok so maybe I lied, I can’t even think of one reason why you shouldn’t come to the University of Iowa. This time of year is stressful for seniors, especially when you are getting asked questions left right and center about your future. My only advice is to do what you want because you’re the one who will be living there for four years. When it comes to colleges everything happens for a reason, but selfishly I hope you become a Hawk and #bleedblackandgold.

Until Next Time

Go Hawks!

Summer Memories

Welcome back! Hope you had an amazing weekend. Last Monday it officially became fall, which is my favorite season, and not just for the PSL at Starbucks. Since we are done with summer I thought I would share some of my favorite memories from my past 6 weeks here at U of I. Here we go!

  1. Pittsburg Game: If you can’t tell from my other blog posts I am kind of obsessed with football, especially Hawkeye football. Although the other games, especially State, were amazing Pittsburg was by far my favorite football experience so far. The entire game was nail biting. A guy I met in the stands put it the best way possible, “it’s like a roller coaster that just got fixed, you don’t know if it’s going to break or if it’s going to work but it will be the best ride of your life”. Luckily the roller coaster worked and we won the game. How about that 57 yard field goal?
  2. My Daum Dolls: This probably makes no sense to anyone expect me and my Daum dolls, but people can relate to this in general. I think one of the most amazing things about college is the fact that I have been able to make so many new and amazing friends. Shout out to dorm (p.s. not a spelling mistake) floor 2 and all of our late night Disney karaoke in the hallways.
  3. Late Night Pizza: after a long Saturday of football and celebrating, which we have been doing a lot with our 4-0 record, the best way to end the night is late night pizza and Netflix in the dorm. Good tip- Dominos delivers to the dorms until 3am.
  4. 1st Day of Class: Although this may sounds cheesy my first day of class was actually pretty cool. One of my friends and I grabbed a Starbucks before our 10:30 and just sat the Pentacrest soaking it all in. The thought of lecture and college classes was scary but amazing at the same time. We were typical little freshman freaking out about being in college. In fact we loved starting our morning like that so much, that it became a Monday morning tradition.

Random Tip- As well as being a great place for morning Starbucks, the Pentacrest is also one of my favorite study spots before it gets too cold!

  1. Kick off at Kinnick: My last favorite memory I’m going to share was also one of my first. During OnIowa the entire class went onto the field at Kinnick and continued the tradition of creating the “I” which was followed by fireworks and photos with Herky. Although it was 6 weeks ago I still remember every moment. Being on the football field with the rest of my class made the University of Iowa feel like home. I felt like this was where I belonged.

 

What are some of your favorite moments?

Until Next Week

Go Hawks!