Today Is The Day

IMG_5549Today’s post is from Brittany J., a junior mechanical engineering major from Lee’s Summit, Mo.

I have been looking forward to today for about three months. Today, I will walk into my sorority house and be bombarded with several squeals, multiple hugs, and contagious smiles all around. Today is the day that I get to go eat at my favorite restaurant on this planet. Today is the day I get to run to QuikTrip for ice cream at any given moment without being judged. Today is the day that I get to reunite with my best friends. Today is the day that I come home to TU.

There are a lot of different aspects to campus life that I am looking forward to. On campus, I feel like I have a purpose. I am a student, a leader, and a friend. These roles motivate me to grow as an individual; on campus, I have a strong sense of self. I know who I am, what I want to do, and the support that I will have as I try to reach those goals. To know these things is liberating, and it gives me confidence to perform these roles well. However, I can assure you that I did not feel that way two years ago as I walked on to TU’s campus as a student for the first time. Continue reading

Brittany’s Top 10 Sophomore Learnings

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Brittany J. is a junior Mechanical Engineering major from Lee’s Summit, Mo.

As my sophomore year comes to a close, I AM TERRIFIED. I am terrified that I am now classified as an upperclassman, a junior, half way to the adult world, and half way done with college. Initially, I don’t think I’m ready for any of that. But I don’t want to indicate that my sophomore year was a waste when in reality, it was full of many important life lessons that will guide me throughout the rest of my college years and into the adult world. Here are the Top 10 tidbits that I learned the hard way. So take note of them now, and you’ll be way ahead of the game.

  1. Year Number TWO is brand NEW: Sophomore year is NOT the same as freshman year, and that’s okay (because it’s better). You’re living in a new place, you’re taking classes more specific to your major, and you’re supposed to know what’s going on (key words: supposed to). It’s important to realize that with all of these new adjustments you’ll get to know a variety of new people and you may make new friends. You need to embrace this change and not try to replicate all the memories you have from your freshman year. As soon as you do this, you’ll begin having even better experiences because you aren’t trying to copy the old ones.
  1. Socks with flip-flops is not an acceptable fashion statement: It may not be fashionable, but it is my personal favorite. However, I have a good set of friends that have my best interests at heart. Because of this, they ended up stealing three pairs of my flip-flops and hiding them throughout the year to prevent me from further embarrassing them and myself. More importantly, they help me dress for interviews, proof-read my résumés, and prepare me for the professional world. It may not be here yet, but it’s important to preview the job fairs and research colloquiums so that when junior and senior year rolls around you’re already familiar and comfortable in those professional environments. By the time you will be looking for a job, you’ll be an old pro.

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Summer Days Quickly Approaching!

BellIt is not uncommon for me to screenshot picturesque photos of the TU campus from the @utulsa Instagram account and share them as my own. My followers back home in Missouri deserve to be jealous, and TU’s campus on a clear, sunny spring day is pretty difficult to compete with. The blue and yellow flowers pop with color against the crisp bright sky, and everything just seems perfect. It is not uncommon to see students hanging up hammocks across campus to take full advantage of the beautiful weather. One of my personal favorite spots to study is the library stairs at sunset. As I gaze across Chapman Commons and look towards downtown under a swirl of pinks, yellows, and oranges, there is nowhere that I’d rather be. TU just feels right; it is my home.

And yet, in about one month, I will be headed back to Missouri to spend the summer. While I am sad to be leaving TU for a few months, I am also excited for what the summer holds for me. The first week back will be full of watching baseball, sleeping, baking, sleeping, reading, and more sleeping. I am thoroughly looking forward to it. By the second week, though, I will already be bored. Thankfully, that’s when my internship with Burns and McDonnell, an engineering firm in Kansas City, starts! This summer will be my first internship experience, and while I’m looking forward to it, I am very nervous. However, my older friends have assured me that TU adequately prepares us, and they have all thoroughly enjoyed their own internships.

I’m also looking forward to the short trips I have planned throughout the summer. As president of my sorority, I get to attend our national convention in Orlando, Fla., this June. I am impatiently looking forward to spending a week with girls across the country that I share a special connection with based on the values we all uphold. It will be a once-in-a-lifetime event filled with ritual experiences, leadership seminars, inspiring speakers, and new friendships. Plus, I get to go to Disney World, which is the icing on the cake!

Additionally, I will be attending two weddings this summer! For someone who hasn’t been to a wedding since she was 8-years-old and only lives vicariously through Pinterest, this is super exciting for me. College has brought me close to a variety of wonderful people I call friends, and I am looking forward to watching them take this next big step in their lives. It also gives me an excuse to visit Tulsa and St. Louis over the summer.

It’s exciting to hear about all of the fun things people have planned for their summers. I have lots of friends getting excited to study abroad, many looking forward to summer concerts, and several with exciting vacations planned. With everyone off on their own fun adventures, the campus will still be beautiful, but it will be missing an important part. It truly is the students who make my campus shine so bright. My absolute favorite thing about TU is the fact that I cannot walk to class without smiling to at least one person that I know. My summer will be lots of fun, but I already have August 13th circled on my calendar to move back home to TU.  I’m excited to see all the new faces on campus, and I hope you’ll be joining me then, too!