Saturday, May 19, 2012

So, I just graduated...

 My view from one of the COLA sections.

Well Nonsensical Nation, I have finally graduated. It was hard at times, it was stupidly easy at times, it was fun, it was stressful, it was educational, but most of all it was memorable.

I just got back to my apartment from commencement and wanted to share a few thoughts. While I thought some of speeches dragged on a bit, and others just seemed plain awkward, I really enjoy the Key Note speaker Ron Noble. Some people felt he only talked about himself, but I was fascinated by his story. It really shows that you can achieve great things you never expected... but I'm sure going to Stanford helped. (Calm down WSBE grads...) Maybe the message from Ronald Noble was saying "Experience it for yourself." Also, his moment of silence for Greenland police chief Michael Maloney was very nice. I'm happy there were any idiotic shouts during it (No matter what, that seems to always happen). It may have been the quietest moment of silence I've ever heard, which says a lot about UNH and our graduating class. And even if you didn't like him you have to admit, those snipers and security force was pretty badass.

I was lucky to have a decent group of people around me, but it only takes one or two people to take the enjoyment out of a great ceremony. During the entire second half of commencement this one kid kept blaming UNH (and just about every speak) for his COLA degree being worthless. Hey buddy, you got to pick your own major. It's your fault. Also, no degree is worthless if it is something you truly care about. Money isn't everything, but finding your passion in life is. I'm sorry your not mature enough to keep your mouth shut and let the people around you enjoy themselves. I'm sure that will really help you during the whole job search.

I am now officially a UNH alum and this blog is on it's final legs. I'm planning a few more posts to wrap things up over the next week or so, so don't check out just yet. 

Stay classy, not UMassy.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Thoughts on Graduation

I'm a few hours away from my last ever final. My final, final. Unless I end up in graduate school down the road. That being said, all year I have been terrified of graduation. I love it here and UNH has meant so much to me. I've learned a lot, about the world, politics, history and other various things I took courses in. But perhaps most importantly, I learned a lot about myself.

As graduation has rapidly approached over these last few months I had thought that I would become increasingly anxious. And surprisingly, I haven't.

It's May 16th and I haven't had a mental breakdown, an anxiety attack or anything like I thought might happen last August. Recently, I've even become more and more positive about graduation.

They way I look at it, the past four years, and really my entire academic career, I have been doing meaningless work. Other than bettering my own intellectual mind, the work that I have accomplished up until this point in my life is pretty bland. I'm just one person. My senior colloquium, exams and final papers that I have tried to do well one my whole career really mean nothing. Especially once I have my diploma.

But all of that changes on Saturday. On Saturday I, and the rest of the UNH graduating class, will no longer be students. We will no longer be charged with completing meaningless work under the concept that an "A" is good, a "C" is average and an "F" is a failure. But we will become active, contributing members of society.

Now whether that means we will be school teachers, accountants, lawyers or doctors down the road, lab workers, journalists, laborers, a cubical monkey or work in social services among the dozens of other options, we will no longer only be working for ourselves. Even the most greedy CEO does work that benefits others (even if it is just the people right below him). The point is, we are no longer working just for ourselves, our own personal grades. Even if we are just working for money, to get rich, we will still be contributing in many more ways than we do now.

Of course, first we must find jobs. That scary "J" word. There are jobs out there, I believe in them. It is not a myth. Sure, we will probably have to start at the bottom and work shitty entry level positions, but we all have to start somewhere.

So, UNH class of 2012, let's take these last few days we have here to celebrate our memories. But the way I look at it, our freedom isn't ending. It's only just beginning.

Stay classy, not UMassy.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Final, Final Countdown

Welp, here we are. I'm a few days away from graduating and I still can't believe how fast these last four years went. Three (and a couple months) I spent sharing with you all on this blog. It's been a major part of my college experience and really my life. A lot of effort went into this, probably more than most of you realize (not to brag) but it is a lot more than just a few minutes here and there. Most of my posts are new and original. I'm not just posting the latest music video or whatever and writing three sentences about it. When I created this blog I wanted it to mean something, to provide people with news, opinions and stories on the undergrad life at UNH. I wanted it to be unique to UNH, unique to my experiences and unique to our time here and I think I accomplished that, for the most part at least.

A lot of you have asked about what will happen to this blog after graduation and the answer is that nothing will happen. Here is my reasoning.

This may sound a little selfish, but it is what I want. This blog has been my creation, my work and it took a lot of my own personal time. I'm leaving it as my own personal mark on UNH and really my own personal college memoir. I don't want to give it away, because quite frankly, even if I found someone better, I would never be happy with it. Someone else will create their own form of blog or twitter account to fill the void left by me and my fellow UNH social media personalities who are also graduating.

This blog has been filled with my personal stories, opinions and rants. It's been completely my own creation and done with my own style. Even the guest writers I've had never really seemed to fit in 100%. Don't get me wrong, they had some great posts, but they all seemed to fade away after a few posts (or due to graduation). Other people will make their own mark and leave their own path. I don't think it would be right for me to hand it on, not because I don't think it can be done, but simply because of how personal this blog is to me and what it means to me.

There is a reason I kept this blog mostly anonymous, although if you look in the right places you can figure a few things out. But at the same time for certain job applications this blog could actually be quite useful. (I'll be making my own personal twitter account and linking to it from my UNHBlog one when I do if you really care that much.) Also, there might be a little more "public" announcement come graduation...

Stay classy, not UMassy.
PS: I plan to have a couple more posts up over these next few days. I'm not done yet!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

SBP elect Rob Wilson continues to ruffle feathers

Not too long ago UNH held it's annual student body elections. Rob Wilson was the victorious candidate for the position as the new Student Body President for the next school year. Sadly, it appears that Mr. Wilson has been anything but the graceful winner. You know the old saying "act like you've been there before"? Due to recent actions, this can not be said for Wilson.

Following his victory Wilson refused to do an interview with TNH because they had written an editorial supporting another candidate. Real mature Mr. Wilson. I don't know what your future plans are, but politicians have to deal with critics everyday of their lives. Unless, of course, you don't plan on being a politician and you just wanted to be elected to pad your resume. Which would be totally acceptable because the student body president (and entire senate) is basically a sugar pill provided by the administration so that they can say that we have a voice. Let's face it, the student senate would never get anything done that the administration wasn't okay with.

Anyways, to get back on track. Wilson finally did agree to an interview with TNH, but only if it was with a reporter he knew. Because, of course, rejecting an interview with the one publication that most students read is the true sign of a leader. Along with that article,  TNH also published a second editorial saying:
But what was especially noteworthy from my short conversation with Wilson was his continued exaggeration and illusion of what he had accomplished at student senate. He still maintains that he has more experience than his counterparts, which is true if you don’t discount the semesters and meetings that he did not participate in.  

As 2010-2011 president Richard Peyser said of Wilson one year ago in this newspaper, “Wilson seemingly held his participation in the billiards club to be more pressing than representing his constituents; he frequently left and failed to show up at student senate meetings to attend his billiards club. That, however, is not the core concern I have. I take great offense to his statement that he has been working on medical amnesty since ‘it’s inception,’ when in fact he has not contributed to that pilot program in any capacity whatsoever.”

Clearly Wilson has tried to take credit for other students work, lied about his past, and blown off interviews and meetings. Actually, he sounds more and more like a real politician the more I think of it.

I wasn't planning on getting involved with this issue (because the student body president position is absolutely meaningless) but I was leaked more information about Wilson today that only continues to show his poor decision making and egotistical personality.

Apparently Wilson changed the door code to the Student Body President, locking out current President AJ Coukos who should have the office for the remainder of the semester. Reports say that Coukos "looked pissed" upon noticing he was locked out. Coukos' name was also removed from the door. Is Mr. Wilson looking to move in early? Renovate it? Or am I simply making nothing out of something because it's raining out and I don't feel like working on my final paper right now? 

All I know is that this (meaningless) victory for Mr. Wilson has clearly gotten to his head and he has only furthered to strain his relations with his own student body and student senate.

Stay classy, not UMassy.

Like a Pro: Books, beer cans and everything in between

UNH, it’s been a wild ride. Four years jam-packed with all-nighters, cram sessions, essays galore and, of course, weekend parties. It’s been three years of me writing these columns every Sunday night or Monday morning. According to my count, this right here is my 76th, and final, “Like a Pro” column. Oh, and by the way I don’t call them “Like a Pro” because I’m full of myself; it’s an inside joke and maybe we’ll get to that explanation later on (cough hint hint cough).

My fellow 2012 classmates, thank you for everything. I am proud to call you my classmates, and even a few of you my friends. We will all do great things in the future and like our commencement speaker will probably say, “It’s our turn to go out in the world and make a positive difference.” It might be very cliché, but it is also very true.

I have made many great friends over the past four years and it is sad that our time here has come to an end. I am very appreciative of my education, but my new friends and the memories we’ve shared together, from our first days in Williamson up through graduation, is what I will really cherish down the road.

To be fair, college has not been all great memories, fun times and drunken shenanigans. There will definitely be a handful of things I will never miss. Scantron exams. Those stupid little bubbles just staring back at you almost like they know you skipped the last two weeks of classes because it is just a useless general education course. 

Blue books. I’ve filled out page after page of Blue Books for the last four years, and after my last final next week, I will never have to write in one again. Thinking about being done with Blue Books makes graduation slightly better. 

Essays. These are even worse than Blue Books because you actually have to put more than an hour or so into this form of BS. I’m actually multi-tasking this column and my last college essay ever, and it is rather bittersweet. Bitter because I have enjoyed writing a few papers, and sweet because I’ve despised writing way more than those few I actually enjoyed. And it’s my last one. Unless I end up in grad school. Crap. 

Living with other college students. Don’t get me wrong, I love my roommates. They’re my best friends and we have had tons of great memories. But college students are dirty, messy, smelly, and they may or may not have on the same pair of underwear for the fourth straight day. This is totally acceptable for most kids during college. Not having to put up with smelly, drunk people (including myself) might be nice.

Okay, so there are only a small handful of things I will actually miss about college, and that last one doesn’t really count. All of the best moments, my greatest memories and fun times far outweigh all of the exams, essays and dirty dishes. 

Personally, college has been an amazing experience. Reality has set in and I’m ready for the next chapter of my life. Or I could apply to graduate school, but I really like the idea of being done with schoolwork forever. Victories from in the classroom to the Beirut table and everything in between will be some of my greatest college memories. Over four years ago I was applying to college, and hopefully, four years from now, I’ll look back and feel just as accomplished as I do now. Something about this paragraph seems "telling." Try figuring it out and maybe you’ll be pleasantly surprised (cough another hint here...)

One more thing to you all: Thank you. Thank you all for reading my rants and ramblings. This column and my blog have allowed my college experience to be so much more than just books and beer cans. Without readers, whether you love or hate my work, you all made this possible for me. I’d like to think that my writing impacted a few people, maybe even made a difference on this campus, but if it didn’t, at least I know that it definitely helped me along the way.

Good luck out there my fellow graduates. Cheers to you all. To the non-graduates here, keep doing your thing and keep UNH awesome. And lastly, one final time, say it with me: 

Stay classy, not UMassy.