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Thursday
09/21/17

How Do You Decompress?

Posted by caaponte on September 21, 2017 in Fall Semester, Mental Health, Reflection, Senior Year

We get so focused on managing our “To-Do” list that we forget to do fun and simple things. I remember being asked, “what do you do for fun?” and I did not have an answer.

What do you mean?

“I have 3 homework assignments due this week, an exam tomorrow, a group project with a group that can never find a time to meet, my friend’s birthday is tomorrow, and I should probably go grocery shopping before I starve. So what exactly do you mean I need to make time for fun.”

With a little less sass, that was my response. But after reflecting on how living a life SO focused on my surroundings – I see that the end result is far from what I had anticipated. When I did not take time for myself to decompose and do things that I enjoyed doing on my own, my academics and personal life took a heavy toll.

There’s no perfect formula with how to manage your time. If you find one – let me know. You’ll probably make millions. But if there is any advice I can give underclassmen (or anyone for that matter), it is to find balance. Otherwise, you will wear yourself out.

Choose a monotonous activity that decompresses you. Our brains are not designed to work hard from the minute we wake up to the minute we go to sleep. So BE KIND to your hard-working, mental machine.

Tuesday
09/19/17

Help Me Talk about Me

Posted by caaponte on September 19, 2017 in Fall Semester, Senior Year

During interview prep, I quickly realized how difficult it is to talk about myself. Anyone else with the same problem? Sure, I can give you a number of bullet points that include things I enjoy and things I rather avoid for the rest of my life – but say, “Tell me about yourself” and I have trouble translating those bullet points into a blurb about Christina.

This isn’t just a skill I would like to have during college when interviews for dental school and scholarships are more frequent. In every conversation I have with someone new, I want to be able to tell them a little about myself before releasing the sassy sarcasm.

Off to Career Services I go to meet with one of the counselors. Talking in front of the mirror does not compare to having a counselor comment on the amount of “um’s” I use and the mannerisms I may want to put an end to. Things you don’t even realize you do – you are able to see for the first time. You look at the screen and watch yourself answer the interviewer’s questions and think….”Who is that?

After meeting with my career counselor, I realized I had been approaching the common questions all wrong.

 

Tell me about yourself.

Why do you want to be a dentist?

What do you believe is your biggest weakness?

She told me ways to dig myself out of a question if I get too buried in, how to compose myself if I feel worried about a prior question, and most importantly – she made sure I understood that the interview begins the moment I approach the building.

Here we go!

Friday
09/01/17

It’s My Turn.

Posted by caaponte on September 1, 2017 in Fall Semester, Futuristic Thinking, Senior Year

Entering my fourth year, I realize that in many aspects – it is my turn to organize, implement, and promote what I have been taught these past three years at UB.

It’s my turn to direct freshmen through the maze that the university refers to as the Hochstetter and Cooke Complex.

It’s my turn to lead meetings for the Pre-Dental Association.

It’s my turn to TA Evolutionary Biology Lab.

It’s my turn to sign THE Bull.

It’s my turn to make plans with my group of friends for our last spring break (Bahamas, here we come).

It’s my turn to direct students to the best places to eat on and off campus.

It’s my turn to run a Bills tailgate.

It’s my turn to see one of my closest friends open as a DJ for Fall Fest (Shoutout to Frank Pierce).

It’s my turn to apply to dental school.It’s my turn to set an example for how to make the most out of your time at UB.

It’s my turn to set an example for how to make the most out of your time at UB.

As I reach for more coffee than usual, I will be finagling my way through my last year at UB all while helping those around me make it to their senior year successfully.

Raise your coffee/ tea/ beverage of choice in the air and cheers to the beginning of a semester full of possibilities!