Category Archives: resources

How To Survive Your First Day

You asked, we answered! This blog goes out, specifically, to Komal. You wanted tips on how to make it through your first day at Carolina, and we’ve got answers for you. Follow these and you’ll have an FDOC better than the one in Ned’s Declassified.

  1. Know What FDOC Means

How do you spot a first-year? They don’t know the Carolina lingo. Don’t be that kid. Every year, the DTH sends out a first-year guide to all things UNC. In it? All the Carolina abbreviations. I’ll highlight some of the basics for you. First of all, the DTH is the Daily Tar Heel. It’s our on-campus newspaper that’s totally student-run (make sure to sign up for it if you believe in the future of journalism)! They publish new stories every day, from sports coverage to social activism. Make sure to check your mail over the summer for your special copy and read up on all the acronyms. Once you get to Carolina, you’ll be hearing a lot of FDOC. FDOC stands for the First Day of Class. Towards the end of the semester, you’ll hear this replaced with LDOC (Last Day of Class). All of your friends will ask you how your FDOC went, so don’t be caught off guard! It’s also a tradition to drink from the Old Well on FDOC. They say you get a 4.0 for the semester if you do. I’m not one to brag, but from experience, I know it does have a small success rate. Some people like to line up at the well right at midnight and sing the alma mater with other Tar Heels. You definitely don’t need to be that dedicated to the cause to get a 4.0, but definitely stop by at some point during the day. It’ll be hot and the line will be long, but you never know who you’ll meet while you’re waiting.

Image result for gif what does that mean

2. Find Your Classes the Day Before

Nothing is worse than being late for your class because you went into the wrong building. Make sure to take time the day before FDOC to find all your classrooms. Go with one of your suitemates and do a run through of what your days will look like. Make sure to do a Mon/Wed/Fri mockup and then a Tues/Thurs. Also, big PSA, there’s a difference between Hanes Hall and Hanes Art Center. If you have one of these on your schedule, make sure to check you’re at the right one. They’re not across campus or anything, but it’ll still take you about five minutes to walk between each. Trust me, if you have an 8 am, you do NOT want to waste an extra five minutes. UNC is a big campus. I spent my first few weeks with a map of campus as my phone background. Don’t be ashamed if you have to do this. It’s way better than being lost.

Image result for unc campus map

3. Sit in the Front

I’ve only had one 300 person lecture class during my time at UNC and I can honestly say I’m BLESSED. Those classes aren’t fun. Mine was ECON 101 (again, not fun). A lot of 101 courses, especially science ones, will be big lecture ones. Though recitations make them feel a little smaller, the class itself can be easy to get lost in. My best advice is to sit in the front. In my econ class, I sat in the very front row. That might be a little extra, but definitely try to find a seat up front. I’m not saying it’s true, but in my opinion, a lot of the students who get those higher grades will sit in the front. Maybe correlation, not causation? Also, a lot of these lectures require group work to answer poll questions, so you want to be surrounded by smart kids. There’s a good chance if you sit in the back you’ll be stuck next to a kid who only shows up to class the first day, exam days, and last day. And when you have 45 seconds left to answer a poll (yes, @Balaban), you’ll regret not sitting next to someone else.

Image result for gif ready to learn

4. Make Time for Lunch

Nothing is worse than sitting in a quiet classroom and then your stomach starts growling. Trust me, this happened to me all the time if I skipped meals, and though it’s funny the first few times, I could tell the people sitting next to me would get annoyed after a while. Get into the routine of making time for lunch every day, starting with FDOC. This is an easy way to squeeze in social time during your busy day. I was scared of eating alone at first, so I always went with a friend. After a while you realize eating alone is totally normal, and sometimes needed on bad days, but those first few weeks it’s nice to use the time to get to know the people you’ll be seeing for the next four years! Also, make note that your Monday schedule isn’t that same as your Thursday one, so switch up your lunch routine! You don’t have to eat in the dining hall every day. If you’re extra busy during midterm season, use a plus swipe and take your food to go to a library.

Image result for carolina dining services lenoir

5. Prepare a Fun Fact

Ugh, professors who do this are the worst. My first day at Carolina I was SO unprepared for this question. UNC is great because there are so many cool people who attend. But that also means those cool people have REALLY cool fun facts. I’ve had all but one professor at Carolina ask me for a fun fact, so chances are your professors will too. Don’t be that lame kid that says you played baseball in high school. Newsflash: this sounds like you peaked in high school. Think back to the unique moments you’ve had in your life, and share one! But please don’t go into a full story either, it’s a fun fact, not a fun novel.

Image result for gif not interesting

6. Create Group Chats

Create group chats with the people you sit next to in class. This is an easy way to get to know your classmates, and it’ll come in handy when you need help with homework. Carolina students are really friendly, I promise you no one will think it’s weird if you take initiative. My MEJO 101 class I sat next to my roommate. On our first day, she made a group chat with the two boys who sat behind us. We didn’t know it then, but by the end of the semester, we all became besties! Also, divide and conquer is an actual thing. It’s easier to find the answers to a study guide between four people than by yourself. Do yourself a favor and create that group message.

Image result for gif can i have your number

Well, there you have it, how to survive FDOC, Carolina edition. Stay tuned later in the semester for how to survive LDOC. That one is a lot more fun :).

You Mean There Are How Many Libraries???

That’s right folks!

As you may have heard, UNC’s campus is home to 12 beautiful libraries, where students love to study with friends (but also procrastinate and enjoy an Alpine bagel). While they can’t all be as as big and beautiful as our friend Davis, each and every one of them is special in its own way!

My article today is going to be a completely biased ranking of the 12 libraries on campus, according to my experience. However, feel free to leave me a message in the comments, letting me know which is your fav!

12. (Sloane) Art Library 

This bad boy is only open during business hours, which means no late-night study sessions. I also don’t have much interest in studying art, but this definitely may be a good fit if you’re an Arts major, as it is conveniently located in Hanes Art Center.

11. Law Library 

I’ve included this one so far down on the list because I’ve only ever seen the Law School while riding past it on the RU, so I don’t know what this building is actually like. If it’s surprisingly a beautiful library, feel free to let me know!

10. Government (Knapp) Library 

Image result for knapp sanders building unc

This library is similar to #11 in that I’ve never actually seen the inside of it, but I’ve ranked it higher on the list because it’s called Knapp, which sounds like nap? Maybe it’s a secretly great napping space on campus!

9.  Media and Journalism Library

I’ve ranked the MeJo library pretty low simply because I’m not a big fan of Carroll Hall. I’ve only had classes in that one lecture hall with those really tiny desks, which was not fun. You guys know what I mean?

8. Music Library

I’m as big a fan of music as the next guy, and I do appreciate the resources available in this space. However, it’s located inside of Wilson, but is really more of a side-show to the real Wilson Library, which is ranked much higher on this list.

7. Information & Library Science Library 

This one is cool because it’s an actual library for librarians, which I think is neat. It’s also home to UNC’s largest selection of children’s literature, leading many to call it our campus’s Children’s Library!

Image result for unc information science library

6. Stone Center Library

While this space is nothing fancy, it ranks pretty high on the list for its convenient location! Located below South Road and next to the Genome Sciences Building, this one is a hidden gem in a very well-travelled part of our campus. Check it out!

5. (Kenan) Science Library 

Kenan is definitely one of our smallest libraries on campus, but has a lot of awesome resources, as well as close proximity to our BeAMaker Space! They also have very cool study rooms, which can be reserved online.

4. Health Sciences Library

An honorable mention, this library has the BEST location for any of our Public Health, Nursing, or other graduate health students located near the hospitals. It’s also home to the Friends’ Café, its very own coffee shop!

Image may contain: sky and outdoor

3. House Undergraduate Library (UL) 

I might ruffle some feathers by placing this as #3, but I think a few too many all-nighters here may have ruined it for me. However, the 24-hour all-access study space is definitely convenient, if nothing else. Easily a Top 3 UNC library.

2. Wilson (Special Collections Library)

Arguably the architectural grandfather of our beautiful campus, this building would easily rank #1 if not for its limited hours and strict noise policy. Can we start a a campus-wide movement to keep Wilson open past 5pm?

1. Davis Library <3

The big man on campus. Davis has a little bit of everything, perfect for each student’s study preferences. You want quiet, cozy study rooms? Check out the view from the 8th floor! Want to chat with your friends & eat dinner while studying? Grab a booth in the 1st floor study lounge. Davis is objectively the BEST library on campus, and is only getting better with renovations!

Image result for davis library unc

Thanks for bearing with me through this VERY long post about UNC’s many libraries! Let me know in the comments how you feel, and we can start a healthy discussion about which truly is BEST! Happy studying, Tar Heels!!

Can I Start Packing Yet?

Freshman college move-in day… crazy, right? Seems like just yesterday you were working up the nerves for your first day of high school. Well, that’s definitely how I felt. But it’s happening. In fact, today marks just 50 days until first-year move-in weekend! Does preparing for this monumental day seem overwhelming? It doesn’t have to be. Here’s my insight on how to pack for college like an upperclassman.

There’s Two Types of People…

This time two years ago, I probably already had my hallways at home lined with all the necessities… and then some. Queen of overpacking, it’s safe to say I didn’t nail the concept of simplicity. But you live and you learn, right?

While packing for college there’s the over packers and the under packers. There’s the ones, like me, that read every blog and Pinterest post on how to pack for college on the face of the internet and began packing from the moment they got their housing assignments. On the other hand, there’s those that figure they can get all the necessities in a suitcase the night before. Don’t be either of these people – find a happy medium.

Seriously, you’ll thank yourself if you manage to find that perfect balance between the bare minimum and way too much. It’s definitely not too soon to start thinking what you’re going to bring with you into the next stage of your life. But that doesn’t mean you need to keep piling things up all summer long. It just gives you more time to think about strategic ways to make your dorm the best home it can possibly be!

Step #1: Talk to Your Roomie

Microwave, mini fridge, rug, curtains, futons, extra shelving – these are all the things you don’t need two of. Communicating with your roommate in advance will not only make packing and moving in easier, it will also give you added space in your dorm!

Image result for talking on phone gif

Step #2: Look into RHA Enhancements

This is a super cool perk of living on-campus! You can check out ‘enhancements’ from your community office, including cookware, cleaning supplies, board games, DVD’s, and more with your One Card! Most enhancements you can keep for up to 48 hours and can check out as many times as you want throughout the semester.

So if you were planning on bringing that cupcake pan, mixing bowl, and whisk just in case you wanted to surprise your roommate on their birthday – leave it at home. If you have a meal plan, you probably won’t be cooking that often anyway, so it’s better to take advantage of this great resource!

Image result for renting gif
No catch here, thanks RHA!!!

Step #3: Remember that UNC isn’t a Deserted Island

If you forget something, I promise everything will be okay. We have a Target essentially on-campus, as well as a Walmart and Harris Teeter just a short drive away. Amazon prime will be your best friend, and students get a discounted rate!

This is also a great way to make friends. Knock on your neighbor’s door, introduce yourself, and ask to borrow their (whatever you forgot). Maybe this is how you’ll meet your future bestie, you can thank me later.

Image result for desert island gif
Like the opposite of UNC

End Goal – Keep It Light

Repeat after me: you don’t need to bring your whole closet on move-in day. I know, NC weather is bipolar and you never know what you’re going to get. But you will not need your whole winter wardrobe before Fall break.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll live in t-shirts and norts in college. And from the amount of free Carolina blue t-shirts you’ll get at sporting events, extracurricular activities, and just walking around on campus – you don’t need to stock up. Seriously, I had to send some of my free t-shirts home this year because they didn’t fit in my drawers…

When you’re packing your things, really ask yourself if you’ll need it all. If you’re packing something that you may need in only one very specific situation, you can probably leave it at home. Worst comes to worst, you can get your parents to mail it to you!

 

My Dad loves to roast me on Snapchat for how much I overpacked…

Trust me, packing light is the way to go. Whether you live on the 1st floor or the 10th floor, you don’t want to be lugging two car loads full of things you’ll probably never touch up and down the stairs in 100-degree heat. Your family will definitely thank you if you minimize the work for them… right Dad???

SOS I’m Undecided

At eighteen years old, you have tons of decisions to make that can feel like they will affect the rest of your life. You picked a college (congrats, you picked the best one in the world :)) and now you have to pick a major. While some of your classmates may be pursuing their career they’ve dreamed of since they were five, if you’re undecided it can feel like you’re lost without a purpose. But I promise, everything’s going to be okay, and it will all work out.

Image result for undecided major gif

You’re Not Alone.

In fact, between 20 and 50 percent of college students enter undecided. On top of that 75% of all students will change their major at least once throughout their college career.[1] So don’t feel like you’re the first student who doesn’t know what they’re doing going into college, because you’re not.

Look at it from the bright side, going in undecided leaves you limitless. You’re free to discover new passions and possibilities, rather than being stuck on one set path. Some people argue that college freshman shouldn’t be able to declare a major for this very reason.

You WILL Change in College.

Spoiler alert: no matter how much you think you know yourself, you will not be the same person in college that you were in high school. There’s something about being completely independent that will change your entire character. And if your character changes, odds are your interests and goals will change with you. So the fact that three out of four students will change their major is not shocking.

UNC offers majors you probably haven’t even heard of. Asian Studies, Classic Archeology, Public Policy, Sociology, you name it! While these may not grab your attention immediately, have you ever really given it a chance? There are so many interesting subjects at university that your high school probably didn’t offer. Here at UNC, you are encouraged to step out of your comfort zone in course planning, you just may find a passion in a field you didn’t know existed!

Image result for undecided major gif

Gen. Eds.

In order to produce well-rounded students, there is a set of General Education Requirements all students must fulfill before graduation. These will probably occupy most of your schedule freshman year, meaning you won’t be wasting your time taking random classes if you haven’t decided on a major. You will be taking classes everyone has to take to complete their degree!

Most students will not be taking more than one or two major courses their first semester. So you’re not going to be behind when you come to a decision. In fact, you’ll be ahead of all those people who started their major curriculum and decided it wasn’t the path for them. Being undecided is a completely normal thing and will not by any means set you back on that projected graduation date.

You’re Not Stuck.

While you are encouraged to declare a major before February of sophomore year, you can change your major up until second semester senior year (as long as you can complete the requirements before graduation). There is no ticking clock forcing you to make a decision. You have the freedom to decide whether or not a path is right for you on your own terms.

This also gives you the opportunity to explore your options and fall in love with your major. While you may not be completely set on what you want to do after college when you first declare your major, taking specialized upper level classes will iron this out for you. And if it doesn’t, you can always make a change!

Related image

Advising is Here to Help.

While those “tell us about your pizza preferences and we’ll determine your major” quizzes are fun and all, you don’t have to rely on those to make such a huge life decision for you. In fact, UNC has an awesome team of advisors that are here to guide you in the right direction. They also offer tons of resources that you can look at without leaving your bed here!

 

Still unsure? It’s okay, you don’t have to take my word for it. You’ll see for yourself once you get on campus and find your niche. Don’t stress, you’ll for sure fall in love with UNC and all it has to offer in no time, and with that your major will come to you!

 

[1] https://dus.psu.edu/mentor/2013/06/disconnect-choosing-major/

Mind Over Matter: Stay Mentally Healthy at UNC

Carolina is an amazing place to be and learn BUT LETS BE REAL, at times it can feel stressful and challenging. As assignments pile up and exams approach, it is natural that your levels of anxiety and stress rise. Along with academics, being away from home can be difficult to adjust to and cope with, therefore we understand how hard it can feel. However, we want to make your years here as pleasurable and stress free as possible!

Ask For Help!

First thing to keep in mind is that it’s okay to seek help. UNC can be academically challenging at times and we recognize that. That’s why if you’re are struggling don’t be afraid to speak with your Teacher Assistant or even your professor to receive additional help. Luckily, Carolina provides free tutoring sessions in Dey Hall or in SASB North, so take advantage of these resources! Also, ease your mind by speaking with a friend, classmate, Residential Advisor, etc as their is someone always willing to listen. Also since everyone is pretty much on the same boat as you, it won’t be hard for someone to understand what you’re going through.  We understand that the struggle is real but don’t let that hinder your from feeling or doing your best at Carolina! There are also mental health professionals located at Campus Health that are dedicated to ensure you can be your best mentally while at Carolina, so schedule and appointment or walk in to get a chance to speak with them!

For The People, By The People.

There are many mental wellness organizations created by students for the students that are dedicated to promote positive wellness  among the student body. If this is something you’re passionate about or if you need a community that can take time to understand and help you overcome those difficulties then be sure to check out those organizations. HeelLife is a UNC portal that allows students to scope through the surplus of organizations at Carolina. You can filter your search with any keyword to find the one that best fits you. To get you started there are a few popular organizations that we have included here. One of them is known as We Wear the Mask which is a group focused on decreasing the stigma around mental health within the African American community to promote better ways to approach mental health. Another organization is known as Embody Carolina, which was started by a Miss UNC Campaign that now has been established as a organization. The organization strives to portray a positive outlook towards body image and body positivity. Healthy Heels is another group found within UNC that is orchestrated by students ambassadors, who are committed to advocate a healthy lifestyle for students through workshops, pitsits, and other events. So through the highs and lows you may experience during your college career, never forget that we’re all in this together!

Me, Myself and I

We hope you understand that though we are here to get our degrees and pursue our careers,  it’s okay to focus on ourselves, as our health is way more important. So make sure you are taking time to take care of yourself. You can do so by incorporating self care days and time to relax into your schedule! Take some “me” time by doing one of the following self-care ideas or anything else that would better suit you:

  • Watch a few episodes of your favorite show
  • Treat yourself with some ice-cream or favorite desert
  • Go to the gym and get a workout in
  • Chill with your friends

Having a balance between school and your personal time is very essential.  Don’t be shy to use the endless resources around you or your peers for a listening ear or an extra hand. The struggle is something we will all face and there’s no reason you should have to face it alone! Definitely strive to make these the best years of your life. So don’t forget to have fun and let loose but always keep your head in the game!

Food Necessities: Dorm Edition

Whether you’re getting an unlimited meal plan or not, you’re still going to need some sort of food in your room. While you may be awake at 2 a.m. finishing homework, the dining hall workers won’t be. They need a break too! On school nights, Chase is open until midnight, so you get a little breathing room, but after that, it’s every student for themselves. Plus, chances are, even if you do get hungry at a time that the dining halls are open, you’re bound to experience at least one wave of laziness where you don’t want to make the trek to the dining hall (it’s not always a sunny, 75 degrees outside). Trust me, being a Florida native, this past winter season was miserable. It may only have been 50 degrees out, but I’m telling you wind chill is a real thing and it definitely makes it feel 30, so walking to Chase or Lenoir was not at the top of my agenda. And for all you Northerners saying you’re used to the cold, welllllll it also rains here in North Carolina, and if you aren’t in the business of getting soaked, I strongly suggest keeping a few of these in your room:

Image result for college dorm food

Ramen noodles and/or Easy Mac:

There is a reason everyone associates dorm food with them, ramen noodles and easy mac WILL be your lifesavers. There’s just no way around it. Any variation of instant pasta will do, but these two are the cheapest. All you need is the pasta, water, and 3 minutes of your time, and then voila, you have yourself a whole meal! If you want to get creative, add a few herbs and spices. It’ll take it from your traditional microwavable meal to one worthy of Gordon Ramsay (okay exaggerating a little).

Lunchables:

It might’ve been since fifth grade since you had a lunchable, but don’t underestimate them. These are the perfect snacks for when you’re hungrier than just chips, but not hungry enough for a full meal. My favorite is the classic ham and cheese (it brings oreos!!), but you can’t go wrong with the nachos either. For days you wish your classes were as easy as in elementary school, lunchables bring you one step closer to your inner 10 year old.

Chips/Goldfish:

For when you need something salty to munch on, these are the perfect snack items. They’re cheap, unmessy, and honestly very yummy. Chips and queso? Chips and salsa? Goldfish? Doritos? Get a variety pack and avoid boredom.

Bagels:

Those 8 a.m. classes are tough, honestly even the 9:05 and 10:10 classes can be hard to get to some days. When you don’t have time to get breakfast beforehand, make sure to keep your room stocked with bagels. They’re yummier than plain bread, but still filling, and they’re something you can eat as you run to class. For those of you with a fridge, feel free to keep some cream cheese or butter. It’ll be just like you stopped by Alpine.

Bananas/Cuties:

My first year, a group of my friends created this “banana challenge” as a joke. They challenged you to eat a whole banana under 10 seconds, and yes, it’s as hard as it sounds. One time, they “banana’d” me, forcing me to start the challenge. They were chanting my name to get me to do it, and soon enough, that whole area of the dining hall was shouting “Valentina! Valentina!” It was mortifying, to say the least. I didn’t end up eating the banana in the dining hall, not with all those people staring, but I did take it back to my dorm room. That’s when I realized I had just done something. Why use a swipe trying to get a banana, when I could just take one the night before and save it in my room? Try this every time you’re in Chase. Don’t leave without a banana. As for cuties, who doesn’t love them? The Target on Franklin sells them year round, so be sure to stock up.

Granola bars/trail mix:

Do I even need to explain this one? Perfect for on the go, perfect in the morning, perfect at night… There is really no bad time for granola bars or trail mix. Definitely buy one with m&m’s in it- no one eats the normal kind anyway.

Something sweet:

Everyone has a sweet tooth. When you’re on South campus and don’t want to walk a mile for Lenoir cookies, make sure to keep something sweet in your room. I found cookies or chocolates work best because they don’t expire quickly, but definitely, if you’re a baker and you enjoy cupcakes on the weekly, keep some cake mix in your dorm. It’ll come in handy if you ever forget about your roommate’s birthday.

Pro tip:

Many of these foods require a fridge or microwave, but that doesn’t mean you need to bring both. One of the great blessings of having a roommate is you guys can decide what each person is bringing. Divide and conquer. Now that room assignments are out, get in contact with your roommate and start talking about who is bringing what. There is no point (or space) to have two of each item.

How to not live like a slob in your dorm room

Let’s be real, with all of the social and academic pressures of college, cleaning your room starts getting pretty low on the list of priorities, but having a clean room can improve both your mental and physical health. Not only that, but it will keep your mom from yelling at you when she comes to visit for family weekend (personal experience, not fun). So, without further ado, here are some tips for keeping your room clean.

Cleaning GIF by SpongeBob SquarePants - Find & Share on GIPHY

1. Make good use of the community office’s rental options

In every community on campus, there’s an office that can help you if you locked yourself out, need something fun to do or require cleaning supplies. You can rent out vacuums, brooms and Swiffer mops. It may not seem like it’d do much, but you’d be surprised at how much better and cleaner a quick sweep can make your room look and feel, and it really doesn’t take that long. Plus, renting it means that you don’t have to buy it yourself, which is wonderful because if there are two things college students hate, it’s spending money and cleaning.

Monica from Friends cleaning her vacuum

2. Make a cleaning schedule with your roommate

If I don’t put something on my calendar, it doesn’t happen. That’s just how it is. Scheduling a certain time to clean ensures that you don’t keep putting it off by saying “oh yeah I need to do that sometime,” and then immediately forgetting about it. If you want, you and your roommate can turn it into bonding time. Just put on a great room cleaning playlist full of middle school throwback jams, and what was once a chore becomes a party.

Will Smith dancing with a vacuum

3. CLEAN THE BATHROOM

This obviously doesn’t apply if you’re in a hall-style dorm or an eight-person suite, but if you live in a four-person suite or an apartment, the bathroom gets filthy, and it gets filthy fast. The good news is that cleaning the bathroom isn’t as difficult as you think. For instance, if you want to clean the shower, just get a spray bottle of shower cleaner (yes, that’s really what it’s called. It could not be easier), spray it in there, wait a few minutes and use the shower head to rinse it off. Also, invest in some disinfectant wipes, as they can be used to clean just about everything in the bathroom, from toilets to sinks to shower heads.

Puppy knocking over shampoo bottles

4. Wash the dishes as you use them

I’ll admit that I’m kind of bad at this one, which is weird because I’m good at everything except modesty. I don’t know what it is, but there’s something in my brain that says if I leave the dishes there long enough, they’ll eventually just go away. This is obviously not true, and the pile just grows to the point that I’m praying for an apocalypse because at least then, I won’t have to wash them. In suites, this is an even bigger problem because there’s only one sink, and if your roommate finds themself unable to brush their teeth because of the monument to slobbiness you’ve built in and around the sink, there can be some tension. If you wash the dishes as you use them, however, it’s only one plate or bowl at a time as opposed to a daunting mountain. It’ll take a few minutes instead of half an hour, and it’ll be so worth it.

Donald Duck washing dishes

5. Make your bed

Not only does making your bed make your room look a little less sloppy, it also makes you feel better and be more productive. If you make your bed right when you get up, you’re less likely to get back in it and go back to sleep. It also makes you less likely to lay down and take a nap later in the day. I love naps as much as the next person, and sometimes they’re necessary, but they can also be counterproductive if you really need to do work. Making your bed is a simple, quick thing you can do to make your room look better and help you feel better.

Making the bed

College can be stressful and busy, which can make cleaning your space feel pointless and time-consuming, but the benefits of having a clean place to live are very important and can greatly impact your physical and mental health.

 

Orientation Do’s and Don’ts

Wooohoooooo it’s that time of the year. Graduation, family vacations, and new to you: orientation!! Every new student coming to Carolina in the fall gets to attend an orientation session this summer, so I’ve broken down the two days into the best do’s and don’ts list I could think of. After reading this you’ll be totally prepared to make the most of your Carolina preview.

Image result for gif so excited

Do’s:

  1. Do take advantage of all the free items! One of the best parts about orientation is all the free Carolina swag you can leave with. Throughout your two day experience, many of the organizations on campus will be present at different sessions to teach you more about life at UNC. The best part is, this usually means they have free stuff to give away too. There are stickers, popsockets, phone wallets, water bottles- seriously anything you want you can pretty much find. You’ll come out of orientation ready to show off your Carolina pride to all your friends. *Hint hint* come find me and the rest of the summer Housing team for some of this said free stuff.Image result for thanks dude gif
  2. Explore the Chapel Hill community! If you have time, check out all the yummy places to eat on Franklin Street. There is nothing that will make you more excited for college than knowing where all the tasty places Tar Heels eat are at. For those of you who don’t live nearby, it’s also a great opportunity to see how much Carolina pride the town has. Many of the restaurants on Franklin are decked out in Carolina art and other Tar Heel decorations, so be sure to take it all in. You’re going to be spending your next four years in this town, and dining hall food will only satisfy you for so long. Use orientation as a trial and error time to find your favorite Franklin Street staple. P.S. we’ll be giving away coupons to some of these restaurants, so make sure you stop by our table during your session! #EatBlueBleedBllueImage result for so much food gif
  3. If you’re coming to orientation with your #froomie, stop by the Chapel Hill mural behind He’s Not Here. There’s no guarantee that you will become besties with your roommate, but chances are you two will make memories that’ll go past your first-year, so it’s always nice to have a picture that marks the start of a friendship. Who knows? You might even end up rooming with them again your next year.  Don’t forget to check out our blog in the next few weeks for more picture perfect spots to take your roommate to! #DoItForTheGramImage result for besties gif

Don’t’s:

  1. Don’t forget sheets, blankets, and a pillow! All students are housed overnight inside Cobb. Being a hall-style residence hall, it has central A/C, and boyyyy can it get cold in there. To not spend your first night at Carolina shivering, (since there will be plenty of those during the winter) make sure to bring a blanket to keep you warm. PSA: You may not get a lot of sleep!  Trust me, Orientation Leaders pack A LOT into the two days you’re here. So once you finally do get a chance to head back to your room, make sure you have everything you need to spend the night dreaming of your Carolina future. You’ll need to be well rested for Day 2 when you practice registering for classes. Image result for bed gif
  2. Speaking of course registration, do NOT panic!! I was so overwhelmed and stressed during my registration info session, I wish someone would have told me it’s totally normal. On Day 2, all new students participate in a mock registration session with an academic adviser. Here, all your questions on how to register for classes will be answered. When they take you through the course lists, you might notice all the classes appear to be full, but don’t worry! Many of the courses for first-years have reserved seats. This means they might appear to be full when you’re looking, but come registration time certain seats will open up specifically for you! If you still don’t see any classes that have open seats, a lot of times students change their schedules over the summer, so if at first you don’t succeed, keep checking! Also, ConnectCarolina isn’t an easy website to figure out by yourself, so make sure you’re really paying attention during your info session. The last thing you want to happen is come your registration time a few weeks later and you realize you have no idea how to add a class to your shopping cart.Image result for im fine gif
  3. Don’t be shy!! Be open to making new friends! The very first people you meet at Carolina will be those in your orientation group, so make an effort to become friends with them! How cool would it be during graduation time four years from now to say you met your best friends your very first day at Carolina? A lot of times, the groups are created by similar interests, so find things you and your groupmates have in common! All in-staters and out-of-staters have one thing in common: they’re all new to UNC, so don’t worry about being nervous about introducing yourself. Everyone is in the same boat of trying to meet new people. You never know who you will end up seeing every day in the fall! Image result for did we just become best friends gif

Orientation is your first real taste of Carolina- take the time to soak it all in. After all, this is your home for the next four years!

Navigating the Bus System: A First-Year Guide

You’ve decided to join the UNC Class of 2022; you’ve filled out the Housing application; what else is there to do? Here in our college town of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, all students (and any community members) have access to the Chapel Hill Transit service at no additional cost! Our transit system has 30+ different bus routes, each allowing students to access different parts of the town without having to worry about driving. This guide will show you ropes and get you prepared to take full advantage of the resource when August rolls around!

 

Image result for chapel hill transit

Getting Around Campus: The U and RU Routes

Don’t feel like walking to class today? I don’t blame you–I am the same way! Thankfully, we have two on-campus routes that essentially drive in circles around our campus all day. The U shuttle goes in a clockwise direction around campus, and the RU, or Reverse U, goes in a counter-clockwise direction, in case you’re going the other way.

Image result for shopping bags gif

Looking to do some shopping? Try the J, CW, or G Routes

Whether you want a new outfit or need to stock up on snacks, you don’t want to have to walk home with your bags! Both the J and CW routes depart from the bus stop near Abernathy Hall on campus, and will take you to Carrboro, where there are both boutiques and grocery stores. If you are looking for a wider range of options, the G route departs from South Road, and will take you to University Mall, home to shops, restaurants, and a movie theater.

Image result for GoTriangle

Want To Get Out of Town? Use GoTriangle Transit! 

The transit service for the greater Triangle area, GoTriangle, offers buses routes from Chapel Hill to many desired locations in the area (at a small cost). These buses can take you to nearby Raleigh or Durham, larger cities filled with job opportunities and fun destinations. GoTriangle also has routes to the airport if you’re planning a trip home!

 

The local bus systems are a great resource that all UNC students should take advantage of because we have such a great surrounding community. It also doesn’t hurt that the bus drivers are super friendly! If you’re ever unsure of where to go, feel free to ask a driver, and they can point you in the right direction. The Chapel Hill Transit bus routes and schedules can be found here, so let’s get moving Tar Heels!

They See Me Rollin’

As we know, UNC is a rather large campus that at time feels like a whole other world. Sometimes that walk from class back to the southern part of campus can be brutal, especially in that summer heat. Jeez.   However, to avoid overheating and the endless sweating, why not hop on a bike?  Riding bikes is one of the most efficient ways to get around campus, as their are many benefits and advantages that you may or may not be aware of.

 

Why Hike, When You Can Bike?

Biking around campus has so many conveniences. Not only can you get to your destination quicker by cutting your walking distance in half but you’re also getting in a pretty rigorous workout, cause those hills are NO joke. On the other hand, beat the heat as you enjoy the nice breeze when you’re zoomin past the Bell Tower or down Skipper Bowles Drive. The other great thing is that UNC accommodates for bike riders, as you can find bike rails near every residence hall, class building and parking lots. Therefore you’ll never have to worry about finding places to put your bike as you got about your day. On that note, be sure to always lock your bikes to keep it extra safe!

 

When In Doubt, Pedal It Out!

There are many resources available for avid bikers and even those who are yet to be familiar with bike riding. For cyclists, MOVEUNC dedicates a month to celebrate cycling, as they provide many beneficial services for students. Bike riders can receive free swag like seat pads, locks, bells and many more useful items along with bike checks and registration! Also, some other great benefits can be found while using the UNC Maps website or app, as they have created a section specifically for bikers. This sections includes very useful information such as routes, bike amenities, bike rail locations and more! UNC Maps also provides routes explicitly for riders to find paths suitable for biking to their destination. In addition, UNC Maps includes amenities that could be useful and/or necessary such as air pumps, fix it stations, bike hubs, etc. Therefore, you can feel confident that if you ever need an extra hand, UNC has your back!

 

But Wait, There’s More… 

If you haven’t noticed lately, there are blue Tar Heel bikes all over campus that are just waiting to be utilized and you should definitely give them a try! Through the UNC Bike Share program, students are able to rent a bike at their convenience.  Well, first and foremost it is free to students and also very simple to set up. However, before you eagerly hop on a bike, you need to register for an account then you must reserve a bike. After so, you may ride until your heart desires (well technically you get an hour a day for free, but if you so chose to ride for longer you will be charged accordingly). Make sure to check the website for more information! Once you’ve gone on your ride, return the bike to any of the bike stations then feel free to repeat! As mentioned before, students are provided with an hour each day to ride for free, so definitely take advantage of this resources whether you need to make a quick trip or want to enjoy a nice bike ride during the sunset.

 

And Here Comes The Bad Part….

Well in all honesty, there aren’t many inconveniences that come with riding you bike… Well maybe besides falling, so please ride cautiously! Nonetheless, you may find difficulty biking during midday, as there tends to be a lot of foot traffic while students head to lunch or their next class. Also, unexpected construction might be in your way but besides that biking is a great form of transportation around campus! Just remember no texting while biking and be sure to keep safe as you rush to your next class or take a scenic adventure around campus!