Leadership, Passion & Purpose Through Vietnamese Student Association

Cindy stands next to the Science Hall sign.

A Highlight of Student Life at Rowan University Meet Cindy Nguyen, a rising senior biochemistry major, with minors in neuroscience and psychology. She is a commuter from Voorhees, New Jersey, and is here to discuss her role as president in the Vietnamese Student Association. Can you describe the goals of the Vietnamese Student Association? “With VSA, […]

Rowan University Wellness Center Intern Shares How College Students Can Break the Procrastination Cycle

Dabany poses in front of the wellness center.

This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @rowanuwellness on social. This story is by Dabany Garris, senior psychology major with a concentration in child behavioral services. Procrastination. Take a minute and think about some of the things that […]

Meet Some of Rowan’s New Transfer Profs

Pink sunset above the iconic roof of Bunce Hall.

Today we’re excited to feature more incoming transfer Rowan Profs. Ella Haulenbeek will transfer from Rowan College at Burlington County; Tanisha Sharma will transfer in from Stockton University; and Leah DeLuca is joining us from Camden County College. 

Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward to at Rowan University? (Personally, academically, anything!)

Ella Haulenbeek: I’m looking forward to making long lasting friendships and becoming more immersed in my psychology career!

Tanisha Sharma: I am looking forward to seeing what classes I would take, what research I could join and where I could find leadership opportunities.

Leah DeLuca: I am looking forward to meeting and collaborating with other education majors.

What is one hobby, activity, sport or club that you’re involved in that you’d like to continue at Rowan? (If any.)

Ella Haulenbeek: I’m hoping to continue my choir experience after not having participated in it since high school.

Leah DeLuca: I am involved in [honor society] Kappa Delta Pi at Camden County College and would like to continue my work with Rowan’s Kappa Delta Pi.

Lea DeLuca with her family on a dock.
Welcome to Rowan, Leah!

Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself at Rowan? Grow a new skill? Try a new interest? Starting a new activity, sport or club? Learn a language? Be a part of?

Tanisha Sharma: I would love to further explore my leadership skills, along with my perseverance. The latter because my desired path requires a lot of work and consistency therefore, my academics will greatly test the amount of perseverance that I contain.

Please share an interest, hobby or like that you have! (Gaming, cartoons, your pets, music, painting, working out, etc.)

Ella Haulenbeek: I love gaming, makeup, and shopping!

Tanisha Sharma:  I love listening to music, especially while driving or cleaning.

Leah DeLuca: I enjoy traveling with my husband, kids and Irish doodle pup! We have set out to see every lighthouse along the Eastern Seaboard.

A selfie of Tanisha Sharma next to a body of water.
Welcome to Rowan, Tanisha!

What major are you pursuing and why?

Ella Haulenbeek: I’m pursuing a psychology major so I can provide therapy and counseling services to those who need it.

Tanisha Sharma: I am pursing biochemistry. I am pursuing this because I intent to apply to a medical school (hopefully Cooper Medical School) after my undergraduate and this major will take care of all of my academic prerequisites.

Leah DeLuca: Health and physical education. All children can find joy in healthy and active lifestyles regardless of physical ability. I want to help children find that joy and encourage them to try new activities.

Do you have advice for other transfers who haven’t committed to a school yet?

Ella Haulenbeek: Don’t feel pressured to go somewhere based off of the opinions of others, go somewhere that’ll make you happy.

Tanisha Sharma: I would recommend to them to see which school best suits their needs regarding housing or being a commuter or regarding the professional field in which they would like to pursue a career.

Leah DeLuca: Transferring from a community college to Rowan was an easy process.

Where are you going to live this upcoming year?

Ella Haulenbeek: On campus

Tanisha Sharma: Not sure

Leah DeLuca: Commute from home

Ella Haulenbeek after graduating.
Welcome to Rowan, Ella!

What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked, that encouraged you to commit?

Ella Haulenbeek: My brother went to Rowan and he was treated very well, it seems like a welcoming environment!

Tanisha Sharma: The thing that attracted me to Rowan was its concentration in the medical field. The research that Rowan conducts is huge attraction for me as I would like to pursue plenty of hours in research.

Leah DeLuca: Proximity to my home.

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Story by:

Thomas Ubelhoer, rising junior political science and international studies double major 

From Seeds to 75 Pounds of Donated Produce to the On Campus Food Pantry, Introducing the Community Garden

Mariana the garden chair stands with two volunteers.

When you see a garden bursting with beautiful flowers and fresh produce, many stand to admire and indulge in the product. However, while eating these foods, commonly you don’t see the face that nourished these plants before they came into your possession. Mariana Cardenas is one of the faces behind the seeds. A master’s student […]

Humans of Rowan: Finding Her Place in Wrestling, Volunteerism & Student Leadership

Sapjah can be seen at Bunce Hall throwing a fist into the air.

With a sneak peek originally on @HumansofRowan on Instagram, today we learn more about Psychology major Sapjah Zapotitla of Cherry Hill, NJ (Camden County). Sapjah is involved on campus as the president of the Sociology and Anthropology Club and a member of intramural wrestling on campus.

What’s your Rowan experience been like as the first woman to join the Wrestling Club? 

It was a bit intimidating at first because of how there was no other females there. There’s men there, but it’s very different from how it was in high school. From my experience in high school, there was a lot more variety in the people that would come to practices in terms of size. 

But with the club, it’s like stepping into a jungle. I was really excited when I first started. I was exhilarated to just try my best and show all of the members that I can prove myself and show that I’m a lot stronger than people expect; because, I am pretty small. It’s been so far so good. In high school, it was a bit more of a hostile environment because I was a girl, but with here at the club, I felt welcomed and accepted. They knew that I wanted to come to the Wrestling Club to have fun. 

Sapjah is wearing a red dress standing next to a tree with her hands on her hips outside of Bunce Hal..

What’s your history with wrestling? 

This is a funny story. I used to be very shy and didn’t really think much of myself. But going into high school my freshman year, I knew I wanted to try something new. So I asked people what sports were available at Cherry Hill East. My peers would go on to say all of the generic different sports that might be offered, but they had also mentioned wrestling.

When I had asked about the sport they went on and said, “Yeah, but that’s only for boys.” At that moment I realized I wanted to go out and try out for that sport. 

I was still really shy for the first few months, but after a while I started to speak up and converse with more people. During my time in high school I had even tried to start the girls’ wrestling team. I knew that even if I didn’t have a place I was ready to go out and make one for myself and others who might be interested in similar things. I want to be the change. I want people to know that they’re being welcomed, especially females in a male-dominated sport. It’s been a really fun experience, to say the least. 

How was that transition like going from high school to Rowan? 

At first, I was just so grateful. It’s an environment that I didn’t know existed. That kind of environment where they’re like “you belong.” It has been amazing to find that here. 

Sapjah is standing in front of Bunce flexing her arms.

How’s your experience been so far here at Rowan? 

I was super nervous getting into Rowan because of financial issues. I’m a first-generation student, and I didn’t have role models to follow suit. I had to figure everything out by myself and I’ll be honest, I felt that pressure.

But, I was determined. If I was going to go to college, I was going to do it the way that I wanted to do it.

I’m currently taking 18 credits, which is six courses. My first two weeks into Rowan I became the president of the Sociology and Anthropology Club. I’ve even gone on to get interviews for future positions as well as getting a job here on campus at the Student Success Center as a secretary. It’s been pretty enthralling! 

What’s it like being the president of the Sociology and Anthropology Club? 

For myself, I’ve always been the type of person who likes to jump in and seize opportunities. For example, like being the first girl wrestler. I just want to be there and participate and do what I can to better myself.

With the Rowan Sociology and Anthropology Club, it was in the process of being rebuilt. When I first got there, no one was showing up. I came up with solutions, working with social media to attempt to recruit new members. I’m all for trying. 

Sapjah is standing in front of Bunce and staring into the distance.

Are there any other clubs that you’re involved in? 

I’m also a part of “Get Fit” here at Rowan. I’m a volunteer there. Last semester I volunteered around 20 hours, and I absolutely loved it. I felt like I belonged there, just helping people with disabilities work out helps me just as much as it helps them. I’m now technically a session manager for Get Fit. 

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Story by:
Lucas Taylor, English education graduate student

#PROFspective: A Closer Look At PULLA Tracker and its Founder Siena Rampulla

Rowan University Psychology major Siena stands underneath the art installation Time Sweeps by Discovery Hall.

Siena Rampulla is a senior student here at Rowan University, originally from Holmdel, NJ (Monmouth County). Siena is a Psychology major, with an honors concentration and a minor in Journalism.  When asked to share more about her major, Siena explained she originally planned to go on the pre-med track, which was a long-term dream of […]

Breaking Barriers: How Perseverance and Family Found Kayla College Success

Rowan University Law and Justice major Kayla stands outside on campus near Hollybush Mansion.

Meet Kayla Molinaro, a junior Law and Justice major with minors in and Sociology and Psychology from Rockaway, NJ (Morris County). Kayla is a member of the first class of Rowan’s National Honor Society for First Generation College Students, and her sister now joins her studying at Rowan. Kayla shares what it’s like to be […]

Life with a Hint of Compassion

Maria is sitting and smiling with Rowan Hall in the background.

This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Having compassion with oneself goes hand in hand with being compassionate with others quite often. According to self-compassion researcher Kristen Neff, “With […]

Hispanic Heritage Month #PROFspective: Law & Justice, Psychology Double Major Katerine A. on Not Hiding Her “Personality, Culture or Heritage”

Top of Bunce Hall with a blue sky background.

Today, as part of our Hispanic Heritage Month #PROFspective series, we feature Junior Katerine A. (she/her) from Bronx County, New York. Katerine is double majoring in Law & Justice Studies and Psychology. She discusses her Rowan experience, staying true to herself, and gives advice to future students. What is your student experience here at Rowan? […]

What Hispanic Heritage Month Means for Jeremy Arias

Jeremy is sporting a sweatshirt with his fraternity letters on it and is sitting down in some greenery with his arms spread open.

From Sept. 15 – Oct. 15, Hispanic Heritage Month is not only a celebration, but is also a time of recognition for the many people in the United States and beyond. In our conversation with Jeremy Arias, a junior majoring in Finance from North Bergen, NJ, we learned more of his own unique Rowan experience. In our dialogue with Jeremy we learned more of his leadership qualities as the president of a fraternity on campus (Alpha Phi Delta) as well as what his own Hispanic heritage means for himself. 

What aspects here at Rowan motivated your decision to spend your higher education here? 

The main thing was the environment. All my life I had been going to school with people I know. For example, the same kids I went to elementary school with were also in my high school. I think that’s why most people choose colleges that are so far away.

In my case, I transferred all the way from Indiana. I wanted to be away from home and meet new people. I think that going to Rowan, I was still home in New Jersey but I was still far enough from home where I could be around new people instead of surrounding myself with people I already knew. I still got the best of both worlds here at Rowan University.

Jeremy Arias is leaning against the Rowan Barnes and Noble with his fraternity letters on him.

What was the transition like transferring into Rowan? 

I can definitely say it was a decently difficult transition. When I transferred I did end up missing the spring orientation. At this time, Covid was especially prevalent too so I was put into the transfer floor of Holly Pointe on the 7th floor. There was nobody living there except for my one neighbor. I didn’t even have a roommate, I was living in a double room by myself. Even when I went to all the programs like RAH (Rowan After Hours), they would have bingo or other activities but it was still all online so you really couldn’t meet people in the usual way. It was hard to get in touch with people because of everything being online, but it was an experience nonetheless.

Why did you choose to major in Finance? 

The reason that I wanted to get into finance was because I grew up in a town that was across the water from New York. You see a city like that and you see how it’s run all by money, like Wall Street for example. It’s a big corporate town, but I knew that I wanted to be a part of something bigger like that one day. I wanted to be one of those people that have the distinction, the titles and of course, the wealth as well.

I feel like part of the reason that I wanted to be a part of an environment like that was because I’ve always wanted to be a part of a higher purpose. I’ve always wanted to be in places of greater importance and opportunity.

Jeremy can be seen hanging around the boulevard talking with friends.

What have you enjoyed the most about Rowan so far? 

What I’ve enjoyed the most about Rowan has to be the community. It’s not a big school but it feels so big because of the people. For me, it doesn’t matter how large or small a school is as long as the people there are large in personality or attitude. You always feel at home. There’s so many different people out there and they make the world larger than it is. Between the school programs and the boulevards and all the other opportunities that Rowan has to offer, it definitely is a close knit community.

The people here are larger than life itself. They want to involve you so much within the community. Even though you might feel isolated at times, you’ll always find a home in the community. 

Could you tell us a bit more about your Fraternity? 

I’m currently in the fraternity Alpha Phi Delta, which is an Italian heritage fraternity that was founded on Nov. 5, 1914. We chartered here at Rowan University in the 1970s. We were deactivated and then reinstated in 2017. While we may be one of the few fraternities that have been here for so long, we’re still building. As of now, we’re five years strong and excited for the future.

Even though we might not have as many brothers as other fraternities on campus there’s a beauty in it. All of the brothers are so close knit and really know each other. It’s just like a big family.

I definitely think it’s been quite a ride; I came in knowing nothing and then you come out and become a brother and you know everything about everyone. It’s like a circle of life. You have to learn everything about the brothers but eventually they become your best friends. As a new person comes in, you almost feel old. You were in the same spot as them only a few years ago. You become almost like the old wise guy. On another note, rush Alpha Phi Delta. 

Jeremy is holding up a soccer jersey and smiling at the camera.

How did you come into your leadership position within your fraternity? 

During elections, there were a couple of us running but I think that most people felt the most confident in me and my vision for the future. I ended up winning by only one vote but I had all the confidence in the world in myself that I had a shot at it but I understand why people were skeptical. I had just recently become a brother but I had a plan with how I wanted to steer the fraternity. A lot of the guys who had been in the fraternity at the time were involved during Covid, we were just getting out of it and there were certain things that unfortunately couldn’t work anymore.

But I knew the direction that I wanted to take everyone. I won the election by one vote and told everyone of my plans and really won them all over. I was one of the youngest presidents in the fraternity’s history. There’s definitely a learning curve and there is a much needed adjustment period. You think the whole presidency thing is all fun and dandy but there are so many different responsibilities. People depend on you. It’s still fun, but it was an awakening. I knew I wanted to be president. I wanted to shoot for the top. It’s everything I wanted out of it.

Jeremy is throwing peace signs and smiling at the camera.

How has your experience as President of your fraternity changed your framework of mind? 

I definitely feel like my leadership has steered the fraternity in the right way internally. There is a lot more work to be done, especially in the upcoming semester, but there’s a lot of things that we’re all really excited about.

My leadership is built upon a lot of values that I really believe in. I think that with hard work it gives you a sense of satisfaction. You work hard and when the job gets done you can sit down, reflect and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

What motivated you to take up a leadership position in your fraternity? 

My mentor in the fraternity was the previous president of the fraternity. I saw all the work that he had done and all the leadership qualities that he exhibited. At one point, he told me that he had “picked me because he thought that I was worthy of this.” It resonated with me. I always want to be a part of a higher purpose and that was my calling. It was great for my confidence and I knew I had people who knew that I had potential.

Could you tell us a bit about your hispanic heritage?

My mother is Venezulean, she grew up in Caracas. My dad is Colombian, he was born in Bogota. He moved with my Aunt and Uncle to Venezuela where he eventually met my mother. Together from there they made their way to the United States.

Jeremy is holding up a book and pointing to his families home country of Venezuela.

How has your family incorporated aspects of your hispanic heritage into your life? 

In every aspect of my life. The language, the values, the prevalence of family. Of course, especially the food as well. I’m a huge fan. I think everything really when it comes down to ethics and values. I attribute a lot of my drive and hard work to that type of upbringing. Everything they taught me was all I’ve ever known my entire life.

What does being Hispanic mean to you? 

To me, it means being a part and representing an ethnicity that is filled with culture and life. There are so many colorful things that go with being Hispanic, the culture especially. My parents came here with nothing and worked for everything that they have. It’s kind of a representation for the entirety of the Hispanic culture. Some of us have come from nothing. A lot of work, so hard for everything that we have.

That’s the Hispanic way. It’s a hardworking and yet such a loving, family-oriented community.

How do you involve your Hispanic heritage into your daily life? 

I think that I involve it in every way possible. For example, every morning I make a Hispanic breakfast. When I’m in class, I’m working as hard as I can so that eventually I can go home and show my parents, “Look at my grades, this is all for you guys.” The way that I’m around people, I treat them all like family. I love being around people, it’s amazing what happens when you treat people the way that you want to be treated.

Jeremy can be seen in the Rowan Barnes and Noble holding up books that discuss about different countries flags.

What are your favorite parts about your Hispanic heritage? 

It has to be the food, the language and the people. What I love the most about the Hispanic culture is that there is no such thing as one “Hispanic.” Even with dialect as well, Colombian Spanish isn’t the same as Venezuelan Spanish or even Ecuadorian, Dominican and Puerto Rican. They are all so different but at the end of the day there is one root for it all. There’s still enough similarities where you can understand what the other person is attempting to convey. We’re all so different but we’re also all the same.

How has your heritage influenced your identity as a person? 

I think that the part of my Hispanic heritage that has influenced my identity the most is probably the family aspects. It’s such a loving community, like I said earlier, I’m a people person, I treat everyone like family. That’s just how I am. The discipline and the hard work has ingrained itself into me. In my opinion, every Hispanic has had that ambition and drive at one point in their life. I feel like that’s something that makes up my identity. I’m always striving for better because I always want more out of life. I want that not just out of me, but also everyone around me.

I gotta say though, the Hispanic food has definitely made up a large portion of my identity. It’s my favorite! Lastly, I think the idea of always making someone proud has made up a huge chunk of my own self. With my parents, they continue to work hard and give me everything that I have to help me in life. They still are guiding me down this path for as much as they can. I just want to be in a position of success where I can say “Hey Mom and Dad, I did this for you and I hope you’re proud of me.”

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Story by:
Lucas Taylor, Rowan Global student in Graduate English Education program

Photos by:
Ashley Craven, junior sports communication and media major

    Meet Transfer Profs: Featuring Students from the Edelman College of Communication and Creative Arts

    Photo of 301 High Street on Rowan's Glassboro campus.

    Today we feature two incoming transfer students: Karis Brady (she/her) and Meredith Deferro (she/her) from Gloucester County and Camden County respectively. The two tell us about their majors, why they’re excited to start classes at Rowan, and give advice to future transfer students. Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are […]

    Community Garden: Fighting Food Insecurity From Home

    Mariana Cardenas (she/her/ella) of the Rowan Environmental Action League (REAL) discusses how Rowan University’s Community Garden helps fight food insecurity on campus. Mariana is a Rowan Global student in the M.A. in Diversity and Inclusion program. She earned her degree here at Rowan in Psychology with a Sociology minor and a Certificate of Undergraduate Study […]

    Beyond the Classroom: Sarah Forsman, Achieving the Impossible

    Sarah smiles with green shrubs in the background.

    Sarah Forsman, a Marketing and Psychology student from Gloucester County, is an advocate for those who have Alpha-Mannosidosis and Craniosynostosis. Her experience with the following conditions have provided Sarah with a renewed perspective — one that influences her outreach and prospective goals. In today’s article, Sarah discusses her story, her involvement across organizations, and her use of writing as a platform to champion others. 

    Why did you choose to study marketing and psychology?

    I came to Rowan after I went to Rowan College of South Jersey. I got my associate degree in business administration, and I didn’t know what I wanted to do, so I chose marketing because it’s versatile.

    When I entered my senior year, I realized that I didn’t like marketing, but I had all of these credits. I prayed and thought about it until I came to the conclusion of psychology. This is something that I am interested in learning more about and potentially doing in the future because it has helped me. I chose psychology so if I potentially got a master’s in this area, I would have all the core classes.

    What internship are you involved in and what are some responsibilities in this position?

    Currently, I am interning for Craniofacial Connection. They are a brand new organization. I’ve been in the craniofacial world for some time now because I was diagnosed with Craniosynostosis and I had surgery when I was a year and a half. The person that I am interning for, she worked for the children’s hospital when I had my surgery. She was starting this new organization and she needed help with marketing. Right now, we’re focusing on starting social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. We are also working to develop a newsletter as well as updating her website. 

    Sarah stands and smiles at her home.

    Can you share your story about Alpha-Mannosidosis and Craniosynostosis?

    I was born with Alpha-Mannosidosis. It’s a rare genetic disease that affects every single cell in the body. My body was missing one enzyme and that was the alpha-mannosidase enzyme. By missing that enzyme, it really affects every single part of the body. It affects my bones, brain, and muscles. If you think of something, it’s probably most likely affected by this rare disease. I’ve had a lot of challenges when I was younger. I had moderate hearing loss so I had hearing aids. My muscles were very weak so I had trouble walking. I had ataxia or balance issues. I had a lot of cognitive issues and processing issues. I also have issues with my memory so I don’t remember anything from when I was younger. Even things that were two or three years ago are hard for me to remember, so I always say that I have a blank slate for everything!

    With Alpha-Mannosidosis, I do have a treatment option, but it’s not technically a cure. I had a bone marrow transplant when I was four and a half. Transplants are very risky because of the chemo drugs that are used. The surgery really helped my life because if I didn’t have that bone marrow transplant, I would be here in a wheelchair, barely communicating, and having so many issues because it is a degenerative disease.

    What are some of the challenges that followed after your bone marrow transplant?

    I don’t really have a lot of challenges that were from the actual transplant. We’ve watched a lot of the different aspects that it can affect, and everything is looking pretty good right now. The bone marrow transplant stops the disease from progressing at that stage so anything that happened is thought to have stopped where it was. I still have challenges with my memory, cognitive issues, and brain issues in general. I have a lot of good muscles now and after the bone marrow transplant my hearing came back. I don’t have hearing aids now, which is super cool!

    The biggest thing is probably my brain because it really affects everyday life. My life doesn’t look the same as a typical person that is my age because of what I’m experiencing with my brain challenges. That means I don’t have a job, I don’t drive, I go to school part-time, and I’m doing neurofeedback therapy three times a week. My schedule looks a lot different, but I’m always just trying to remind myself to stay in the moment and be ok with where I am because of the things that I’ve gone through.

    Sarah sits and smiles at her home.

    How do you advocate for others who may be experiencing similar challenges?

    I’m involved with a lot of different things because I don’t have a job, so it can help me be in all of these different areas. A lot of what I do, I do on social media. Parents who have kids that are being diagnosed with Alpha-Mannosidosis are reaching out to me because they see that I have Alpha-Mannosidosis on my social media pages. It’s so cool because they’re reaching out to me and we’re getting on a Zoom call to talk. We’re connecting with families that are across the world like Brazil and Serbia. The one girl that we connected with recently had a bone marrow transplant to stop the disease from progressing. A lot of my advocating happens on social media because there’s not that many people that have this rare disease alone in the United States.

    As a board member of International Society for Mannosidosis and Related Diseases (ISMRD), what is the mission of the organization and your responsibilities?

    ISMRD is the International Society for Mannosidosis and Related Diseases. It’s a family support for all of the different rare diseases that are within this organization. We’re researching a lot because we work with scientists who are looking for cures for these nine glycoprotein rare diseases. We’re on a mission to really try and get the patients connected with the scientists, doctors, and similar networks. I have been on the board for a little under a year. I am working on sending emails to the family to update them on things that are happening within the organization or any opportunities that are happening in the rare disease world. I am also going to be helping them with their social media presence on Instagram because they don’t have Instagram. The board is made up of parents of these kids who have these rare diseases, so there’s not many younger people on the board.

    How do you use your interest in writing as an outlet and a platform for your goals?

    I absolutely love writing! It’s funny because when I was in elementary school, I always wanted to be a writer one day. My mom told me to go for it, even though I had challenges in the writing classes because that was one of the challenges I had with what I was born with. Writing was not my strong suit whatsoever, so I love that I am able to write and share my journey. I write in a way that feels like I’m talking to you and that’s really what I want it to be like. I want to have a conversation with someone because we live in a world that is so fast-paced and no one is sitting down and having a conversation about what they are going through or what is happening in their life. I just want to help to inspire people, even if it’s just one person that reads my blog. I just want to share some hope, joy, and peace in their life.

    Sarah stands and smiles at her home.

    What is the idea behind the title of your blog, Achieve the Impossible Today?

    I am a Christian, and in the Bible it says in Mark 10:27 by Jesus: “With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.” I grew up Catholic, but I stopped going to church. I knew God when I was younger, but it wasn’t like I know him now. In the past four years of knowing God and diving into my relationship with Jesus, he’s just shown me that anything is possible. The whole thing is I just want to share stories of doing the impossible because everything that I’m doing today is considered impossible.

    Who do you hope to reach with your blog?

    Anyone — I would love for anyone who’s going through a hard season to read my blog and find that hope that they will get through this. It’s also for parents who are just finding out that their kid has Alpha-Mannosidosis because there’s not much out there. I just want to raise awareness of the disease.

    What are your goals for the blog and your future?

    The main theme that I wish to go after is just to inspire people in whatever it may be that I’m doing.

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    Story by:
    Jessica Nguyen, elementary education and literacy studies graduate

    Photos by:
    Harley Sarmiento, senior sports communication and media major

    Meet #Rowan2026: Incoming College of Science and Mathematics Students

    Exterior shot of Science Hall.

    Today we feature incoming first year students Ariana Benitez, Soorya B., Abby Titus (she/they), Leila Underwood (she/her), and Dallas Hainsworth (she/her). Ariana is from Bergen County, NJ and will be living on campus as a Psychology and Exercise Science major. Soorya is from Princeton, NJ (Mercer County) and will be living on campus as a […]

    Senior Reflects: Ella Emmer on Being PRISM President

    Exterior shot of Bunce Hall lit in Pride colors.

    Ella Emmer, a senior Psychology major with a minor in German from Somerset County, NJ, reflects on her experience as the PRISM club president and the legacy she hopes to leave on the organization.  

    Ella has made her mark on Rowan University’s community. Her impact can be attributed to her efforts as PRISM president, an LGBTQ+ organization on campus.

    “PRISM provides a safe space for members of the LQBTQ+ community to socialize, form friendships and be their true selves,” she says.

    Ella stumbled across PRISM… literally.

    “I got lost going to a study abroad meeting and I wandered into JoAnna Murphy’s office in the SJICR office. After we got to talking, she introduced me to PRISM. The meeting times fit with my schedule, so I started going to meetings regularly. I became really close with members of the e-board and passionate about activism, so I decided to run as secretary my sophomore year. After serving as secretary, I ran for president and have served in that role ever since,” Ella explains.

    As president of PRISM, Ella manages a lot of events for the organization. “So much goes into planning and executing events for the club. I have to pick a venue, contract any guest speakers or entertainers that come out, and spearhead any fundraising necessary for the event.” 

    Ella Emmer headshot in front of a PRIDE flag.

    Ella was especially proud of PRISM’s role in the university’s Lavender Graduation ceremony, which recognizes and celebrates LGBTQ+ students and allies ahead of their respective college commencement ceremonies. 

    “Lavender Graduation is very special to me. Since legal names have to be put on your diploma for graduation, it can oftentimes not reflect a person’s true identity. PRISM helps host a graduation that uses the person’s preferred name — their real name, to be recognized and honored for graduating as their true selves. I am speaking at the event and I could not be more proud to be a part of it.” 

    Ella at the Lavender Graduation ceremony.
    Ella (third from left) at the Lavender Graduation ceremony (credit: Desire Forman)

    Along with hosting events, Ella leads e-board meetings as PRISM President. “During meetings, aside from preparing for events or upcoming fundraisers, we have an educational portion about LGBTQ+ history. Since LGBTQ+ history is not taught in schools, it is so important to learn about our history and all of the activists who got us here today,” she says.

    As she reflects on her experience in the club, Ella looks back fondly on the memories she has made.

    “I am really happy I got to be involved in an organization that makes a difference. Since I have been in PRISM, we have raised over $2,500 for LGBTQ+ organizations. This money has gone to not only big organizations, like The Trevor Project, but smaller organizations that aren’t as popular or advertised as well,” she says. “Aside from fundraising, I also worked with JoAnna Murphy with the SJICR to create a map for gender-neutral bathrooms on campus. This was a really important project to help others feel more comfortable on campus.”

    Ella hopes the club continues to advance and do great things after she graduates.

    “I hope the future of PRISM is bright and continues to make a positive impact for people in the community. Now that Covid is slowing down, I hope the new e-board can hold more events and partner with other organizations in the surrounding area for our members.” 

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    Story by:
    Loredonna Fiore, public relations and advertising graduate

    Photos courtesy of:
    Ella Emmer
    Desire Forman

    ICYMI: Rowan University Dance Team Ranked Fifth in Nation

    Group photo of Rowan Dance Team at Nationals.

    This year, the Rowan University Dance Team competed at the Universal Dance Association (UDA) Nationals in Florida, where the team placed fifth in the Open Division Hip Hop category. Here, members of the Dance Team reflect on their time at the competition and talk about their dynamic as a team. 

    What makes the Rowan Dance team different? 

    Jordyn Dauter, a first-year Dance & Exercise Science from Quakertown, Pennsylvania says: “Everyone on the team has something unique to offer, whether that is something specifically to dance, or other elements like attitude or leadership skills. We all have something special to offer, which makes our team diverse.”

    Teammate Amber Schott, a junior Psychology major from Bayville, NJ (Ocean County), adds, “Definitely the dynamic of the team. I made my best friends here at Rowan through this team and I always feel super supported and encouraged in reaching my dance goals.”

    Rowan Dance Team outside at the Florida competition.

    Senior Kaya Snow, a double major in Dance and Theatre Arts with concentrations in Acting and Musical Theatre from Oak Ridge, NJ (Passaic County), says, “We’ve really gone through some huge changes in the last few years and we’ve come out stronger through it all. I’m so glad that we decided to pursue UDA Camp and Nationals my sophomore year because it really has changed the entire dynamic of the team for the better.”

    Kristin Mostrangeli, a sophomore Psychology major from Hamilton, NJ, (Mercer County) puts it simply: “Since we get to spend so much time together, we really become so close with each other as a team.”

    Dance team outside

    What is your most memorable memory with the team?

    Junior Inclusive Elementary Education Bianca Moffa from Maple Shade, NJ (Burlington County), shares, “Hearing our university get called as a finalist qualifier will definitely be a core memory for sure. I am so proud to be a member of this team and to see all our hard work pay off by becoming 5th in the Nation in Hip Hop.”

    Do you have a Rowan University or Dance Team experience you’d like to share?

    Nicholette Voci, a junior Law & Justice and Psychology double major from Washington Township, NJ (Gloucester County), says that “being able to dance at football games, volunteer events, and be in Florida with my best friends is the best experience anyone could ever have in college.”

    Sophomore Sociology major Taryn Larsen from Toms River, NJ (Ocean County), reflects on her time with the Rowan Dance Team by saying “it is the perfect mix of practice each week, meeting new friends and performing.”

    A member of the Rowan Dance Team smiles at Nationals.

    How was your experience at Nationals 2022?

    Reflecting on her experience, Mia Tabasco, a first-year Sociology student from Haddon Township, NJ (Camden County), says, “It was so incredible. I’ve been dreaming of going to UDA for the longest time and I’m so proud of our team for making finals. We’re a new team and we made our names known.”

    Sophomore Exercise Science major Adrianna Laezza from Monroe Township, NJ (Middlesex County), shares that the journey to the UDA National competition was a big deal to her. “It was the best feeling in the world to perform on stage again. I got to compete at UDA which was a dream I have had since I was 12 years old.”

    Valentina Giannattasio, a first-year double major in Dance and Marketing from Buenos Aires, Argentina, says, “It was definitely one of the best experiences of my life. I still cannot believe we performed there with all those astonishing dancers. I am proud of how far we have gone. Now we are Top 5 in the nation for Hip Hop!”

    Dance team performing

    What is the best part of being a member of Rowan University Dance Team?

    Alyssa McAvoy, a sophomore Music Industry Technology and Business major from Shrewsbury, NJ (Monmouth County), says, “I love that I am still able to dance in college and the friends I have made through being on the team!” 

    Junior Engineering Entrepreneurship major Isabel Rivera from Flemington, NJ (Hunterdon County), puts it simply. She says, “The best part about being a member of the Rowan University Dance Team is “being surrounded by people who will motivate you no matter what.”

    First-year Spanish Education major Lily Cummings from Pittsgrove, NJ (Salem County), reflects on her first year on the Rowan Dance Team by saying, “It allows me to grow in my ability as a dancer and dance throughout college without it having to take up my whole life. It also provides so many exciting and memorable experiences along with amazing new friendships.” 

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    Story by:
    Loredonna Fiore, senior public relations and advertising major

    Photos by:
    Valentina Giannattasio, first year dance and marketing double major

    Header photo courtesy of:
    Rowan University Dance Team ProfLink



    Understanding and Accepting Our Own Trauma

    Lauren stands on the steps of Bunce Hall.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    What is the first thing that comes to someone’s mind when they hear the word “trauma?” For a majority of people, they most likely think of devastating events such as war, sexual assault, or even a car accident that could forever alter someone’s life.

    Although all of these events fit the criteria for traumatic experiences, this is far from the defining limits of it. In actuality, trauma can be described as any distressing event that impacts one’s ability to cope and control what is going on in their lives (Barbash, 2017). 

    Lauren is sitting on the stairs of Bunce Hall.

    There are two general categories that trauma can be divided into, which are “Big T” Trauma and “Little t” trauma. “Big T” Trauma can be defined as the type of trauma that aligns with the examples that were aforementioned. It is associated with one significant event that often leaves the individual in severe distress and feeling powerless because they don’t have control over their immediate environment. “Big T” Trauma can be debilitating and may also be the precursor to a diagnosis of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) (Barbash, 2017).

    On the other hand, “Little t” trauma is formed by a congregation of events that over time result in emotional disturbance and difficulty coping. This type of trauma covers a wide variety of situations such as infidelity in a relationship, financial struggles, and bullying. Specifically, an example of someone experiencing “Little t” trauma would be hearing negative comments about themselves over a long period of time. This could impact their own self-image, their framework and control over their life and result in emotional damage, which are key characteristics of trauma responses. 

    Lauren is leaning against the Bunce Hall building and smiling.

    Recognizing one’s own trauma may be difficult, especially in the case where one’s own hardships have been normalized through repeated exposure. Here are some steps to take to begin the process of realizing trauma and healing from it.

    To start off, the process can best be begun by taking a moment to recognize the feelings one is experiencing.

    Once those feelings are identified, one should accept these strong emotions and allow themselves to feel them. Now it is time to investigate these emotions into a deeper analysis by thinking about the specific sensations, thoughts, images, and feelings that arise (Firestone, 2017).

    The final step in the process is to not let these thoughts, feelings, and experiences define oneself; what someone went through in the past may impact the way they are able to cope, but the reality is that these events are not a defining factor of one’s identity and worth.

    Lauren is sitting on the grass smiling directly at the camera.

    This part, along with the other steps in the process, can take a long time and that is perfectly fine. Everyone’s experiences are different and it would be unfair to compare one’s healing process to another because none of them have dealt with the same thoughts and feelings. Remember: no type of trauma will be easy to cope with and taking the time to accept one’s trauma is an important first step in the healing process.

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    Story by:
    Lauren Vitale, Senior Psychology Major, French Minor, Honors Concentration, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Ashley Craven, Sports Communication and Media Major

    Produced by:
    Lucas Taylor, Senior English Education Major

    Making a Difference: Desire Forman in the Counseling in Educational Settings Master’s Program

    Desire stands outside James Hall.

    Desire Forman is a proud Rowan alumna from Pemberton, NJ (Burlington County) who graduated with a degree in Psychology and minor in education. She continues her graduate education here through Rowan Global. Read on as she shares her experience in the Counseling in Educational Settings master’s degree program.

    Desire is planning to make an impact on students’ lives, just as her high school counselor did for her.

    When asked why she wanted to pursue the Counseling in Educational Settings program, she says: “My high school counselor was the first adult in my life that really saw me. Without her, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I want to be that person for the students I serve. Rowan specifically stood out because I really enjoyed my undergraduate experience here and knew the Higher Education program was very hands on.”

    Desire gets the chance to do make that impact through her practicum internship at Williamstown High School, where she helps students with class scheduling, preparing for the transition from high school to college, and the application process itself. 

    Desire in front of of the statue outside James Hall.

    When asked about a rewarding moment during her practicum experience, Desire shared a story about a student who was being really quiet in class. She called him down to check in. “He explained his hardships and actually opened up about a bully that had been bothering him for a few years. We gave him options to report the bully so that things would get better,” she says.

    Along with high school students, Desire works closely with college students in her role as a Resident Director.

    “Although it has been difficult learning/enforcing the university’s policies, getting to lead a staff of resident assistants makes it worth it,” she says. “They bring such joy to my life. It is so rewarding that I can give them someone to look up to and help support them during their journey as a student, RA and person.”

    Desire with RLUH jacket sits outside Rowan Hall.

    As for the Counseling in Educational Settings program itself, Desire loves it. “I feel so supported. The people in my cohort are so helpful and kind. The work I am doing is so rewarding, and I feel very fulfilled,” she says.

    For others looking to get into the field, Desire stresses the importance of self care. “In this field, we give so much of ourselves to others, whether it’s students, other staff members, parents and even our peers. Being the person that everyone comes to is extremely rewarding, but it can be draining if we don’t take the proper time to reset. Finding that balance early on in your educational and career journey is going to make all the difference,” she explains.

    In the future, Desire wants to work with either high school or college students. Her practicum experience and Resident Director role are helping her decide what the best fit will be for her in the future. 

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    Story by:
    Loredonna Fiore, senior public relations and advertising major

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior business management major

    Spirituality: Discovering Your Own Faith

    Leah is sitting outside on stairs at Rowan.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    Religion has always been an integral part of human culture and continues to be present in the lives of many, providing a sense of community, faith and purpose. While religious practices can be very beneficial, there are still many people who do not feel connected to or welcomed by various denominations and instead, seek out an alternate path.

    Spirituality and religion, though they may seem interchangeable, are completely separate, with spirituality focusing more on an inward journey and understanding rather than external worship. Christina Puchalski, MD, a leader in incorporating spirituality into healthcare, explains, “Spirituality is the aspect of humanity that refers to the way individuals seek and express meaning and purpose and the way they experience their connectedness to the moment, to self, to others, to nature, and to the significant or sacred.”

    Leah is sitting down outside on campus.

    Spirituality is an inclusive approach that embraces connectivity to forces larger than the self, and without the rigidity of traditional religious institutions, gives individuals the freedom to worship in the way that works best for them. Often called the “pathless-path,” spirituality is unique to each individual and may involve connecting to a higher state or resonating with the belief in a higher power.

    Leah is leaning against a wooden fence and smiling at the camera.
    Leah Mahon a senior psychology major, is from Ocean County, NJ.

    Spiritual practices including meditation, yoga and contemplation allow individuals to explore a consciousness-based worldview that values love and kindness above all. Studies have shown that individuals with any form of belief in a higher power were shown to use their religious or spiritual practice as a way to cope with life stressors. This form of coping is very beneficial, improving feelings of well-being, decreasing stress and depression, and even decreasing one’s fear of death and dying.

    Leah is standing outside with her hands in her pockets.

    Spirituality not only serves to improve one’s overall health and wellness, but provides a path based on one unifying force, where everyone has the freedom to discover their own faith and where no one is left out.

    Story by:
    Leah Mahon, senior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior business management major

    Produced by:
    Lucas Taylor, senior English education major

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    What Rowan Offers: Accepted Students Day

    A family is posing in front of the Accepted Students Day setup and is smiling.

    From this past Accepted Students Day, Rowan University welcomed hundreds of future students to experience what the campus has to offer with a vast array of different events, information on clubs and student life, and opportunities to meet other potential students. In our interviews with these prospective students, we uncovered their reasons for why Rowan could be their future four-year university and what college means for them. 

    The next generation of Rowan students brings an exciting perspective eager to take on new challenges. Whether they are freshly graduated high school students or transfers, many of these students are still pondering their own choices as to where to head for their higher education; but in our conversations, we learned of their own dreams and aspirations. 

    An array of accepted students are posing in different positions.

    For some of the students when asked “Why Rowan?” or “Why college?,” they had an immediate response in regards to their future careers. In the case of future international transfer student, Sophie O., she was drawn to Rowan’s Psychology program. Transferring from Delaware County and originally from Nigeria, Sophie is fueled to help others and future teenagers who do not have the resources to cope with their own mental health issues. 

    Sophie is posing on Bunce Green with her Rowan goodie bag in hand.
    Sophie O., is an international transfer student from Delaware County and Nigeria who is planning on majoring into Psychology at Rowan.

    Already, students are preparing their own core values for their future career and are motivated by empathy in creating a better environment for all. 

    In another conversation with Vivianne N., an accepted student who was drawn to the university due to her family’s own heritage with the school, we learned of Vivianne being unsure as to what to expect for the future. But as she says in her own advice to students, she believes that “students should make a stable plan and live accordingly to it.” Vivianne is a future Rowan student who is entering the Graphic Design program. 

    Vivianne is giving a peace sign and smiling on Bunce Green.
    Vivianne N. is a future Rowan student who is planning on enrolling into the Graphic Design program.

    Outside of thinking of their careers, many students are ready to embrace the college lifestyle and eagerly awaiting the different opportunities that can be found in extracurriculars. For accepted students Stephen L. of Collingswood, NJ (Camden County) and Skyler G. of Wayne, NJ (Passaic County), both are anticipating exploring the different intramural and club sports that the campus offers such as tennis and field hockey. 

    In our conversation with future Engineering student Colvin A. and and Physics major Victor A., we learned of their shared excitement in finding out about the different activities that Rowan has. Specifically, Colvin and Victor are especially looking forward to seeing the Robotics Club and possibly joining an intramural sport. 

    Victor Aretegra (pictured on the left) and his friend Colvin Abdaulkander (pictured on the right) are enrolling in the Physics and Engineering program respectfully.
    Victor A. (pictured on the left) and his friend Colvin A. (pictured on the right) are enrolling in the Physics and Engineering programs, respectfully.

    Outside of these factors, many students are also paying close attention to the financial portion of college. Many students are choosing Rowan due to it being close to home as well as the price of tuition. These components bring out difficult conversations, but many students are ecstatic over the various opportunities that Rowan has to ease the financial burden that comes with college such as in grants and scholarships. 

    For Dylan S. of Pittsgrove, NJ (Salem County), our interview with the future Education major with a concentration in Mathematics provided insight as to his own viewpoint on what scholarships mean for himself. We learned of his welcoming of these different chances of scholarships and treating more as challenges for himself. 

    An accepted student is posing with her mother in front of the balloon archway.

    During the Accepted Students Day fair, there was a reoccurring sense of pride in all of the students and parents attending. Even if Rowan won’t be their home for university, students and parents were enjoying themselves, happily checking out all of the different booths and venues at Bunce Hall. Students and parents were, and are, welcomed with open arms by Rowan University, allowing them all to enjoy an afternoon on campus and experience Rowan even for only one day. 

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    Story by:
    Lucas Taylor, Graduate Education Student
    Loredonna Fiore, public relations graduate

    Produced by:
    Lucas Taylor, Graduate Education Student

    Tapping into our Internal Monologue

    Maria is standing in front of a fountain smiling at the camera.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    For the majority of people, it is safe to say that we have an inner dialogue in our head that goes off throughout the day. That little voice can be perceived as our self-talk, which is the given name to our internal monologue.

    Internal monologue is described as a combination of both conscious and subconscious feelings, thoughts and beliefs. 

    Maria is sitting with her legs crossed on the ground smiling at the camera.

    Self-talk is a natural process. Often, it can be seen as playing the role of many characters in our minds such as the critic, motivator and the conscious/ego. What we say to ourselves in a given moment, helps us frame or shift perspectives from ourselves as well as others.

    According to Psychology Today, whether your self-talk appears to be positive, negative or instructional, it still  affects our actions and behaviors. This can be seen as dependent on the different formations of evidence that aligns with our own personal values and beliefs, but the evidence that you choose to focus on is what helps influence and reinforces that said belief.

    Maria is leaning against a railing with her arms crossed.

    We make ourselves believe in certain notions; for example, that those around us think we are “weird.” Well, what’s the evidence for that? If we haven’t done anything “weird,” there’s nothing to back that thought up. In fact, the truth may be that the reason we haven’t been approached by a person is because they are just as anxious to make conversation as we are.

    So, what are we really telling ourselves? Think of it this way: choice of words matter. Whether it’s the dialogue going on in our head or if we are communicating with someone, the same way we may hurt someone’s feelings by making a negative comment can also hurt our own feelings as well.

    Instead of “I’m so stupid I did that and didn’t realize,” maybe try “I made a mistake, that’s okay — it’s part of being human. Next time, I’ll be more cautious.” It’s both the concept of reframing and allowing ourselves some grace that will help us maintain healthy self-talk. 

    Maria is leaning against a wooden fence and smiling.

    Story by:
    Maria Espejo, senior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior business management major

    Produced by:
    Lucas Taylor, senior English education major

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    #PROFspective: Senior Psychology Major Kya Riley

    Kya smiles and sits in the lobby of Campbell Library.

    Today we talk to senior Psychology major Kya Riley, a commuter from Sicklerville, NJ (Camden County). Kya discusses her experience at Rowan the past four years and her future plans within the psychology field. 

    Why did you choose to study psychology? Have you always wanted to pursue a career in psych?

    I chose to study psychology because I am really big on mental health and understanding mental health and how it can vary by individual. I am someone that has struggled with depression and still do. My personal experience with mental health is what really got me interested in psychology and mental well-being to begin with. In the psychology field, I am interested in becoming a counselor for kids and teenagers within a school environment.   

    Why did you choose Rowan to study psychology?

    I chose Rowan when I was in my college search mainly because I wanted to be close to home. 

    Most memorable experience at Rowan so far?

    My most memorable experience was probably when I lived on campus freshman year and experienced more school life as a campus resident. I remember going to one of the events where the sororities join together at the event fairs and informational sessions.

    Kya Riley smiling inside the library.

    What would your dream job be as a psychology major?

    I do want to start off at first in school counseling. However, my dream job within this field would definitely be opening up and running my own practice and give counseling to kids and teenagers.

    What class at Rowan have you found most challenging, interesting, difficult?

    A difficult class for me was definitely Psychology of Scientific Thinking. Another class that was difficult for me was Intro to Sculpture. A class that was interesting to me was Human Exceptionality. 

    How do you think Rowan has prepared you for your future endeavors?

    I have learned a lot over the years from my experience at Rowan that I can utilize in my future endeavors and in my future work life. The most important thing that I have learned as someone who will be entering the human services profession is that you must have an open mind and learn to alter your thinking. It is a profession that you need to be understanding of everyone and everything. 

    Kya Riley in Rowan Campbell Library.

    What is something interesting that you have learned this semester within a specific class?

    I am in a classed called Psychology of Women and Cultural Experience. In the class we learn about gender stereotypes and I thought it was very interesting and informative. 

    What does a typical day for you look like? 

    My schedule really changes day by day depending on my work schedule. In a typical day, I wake up in the morning, head to campus for class, and then I go off campus and head to work. After work I head home to relax for a little before I head back to campus for my night classes. Before heading home for the night I either spend time with friends or hang out with my boyfriend.

    Portrait of Kya Riley inside Campbell Library.

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    Story by:
    Natalie DePersia, junior public relations major

    Photos by:
    Valentina Giannattasio, first year dance and marketing major

    The Often Overlooked Importance of Sleep

    Rob is pretending to be asleep on a couch.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    College can oftentimes be perceived as an extremely stressful and busy point in a person’s life. More often than not, students can find themselves overwhelmed with an ever increasing workload. Between home life, classwork, employment outside of school and personal free time, it can be very difficult to find time in the day to fulfill all of these responsibilities while also attempting to find a balance with one’s personal life.

    Robert is attentively typing on his laptop.

    As a result, more students have been making the effort to make more time in the day as many students have been sacrificing their nightly amount of sleep to find more time. While this can increase available work time, decreasing the nightly sleep duration in actuality can become detrimental to every aspect of a student’s life and potential career in academia. 

    To state the obvious, sleep is a necessary component of our overall health. During sleep, our bodies release toxic wastes, restore energy and repair cells. These basic bodily functions serve as a refresh button for our bodies, allowing for that newly found energy after a refreshing night’s sleep.

    Robert's body is facing away from the camera but he is smiling directly at it.

    Not only does sleep benefit our physical health, but it is very closely connected to mental health as well. Inconsistent sleep patterns can cause strain on social activity and ability to focus on daily tasks and activities. The recommended amount of sleep for persons over the age of 18 is between 7-9 hours nightly; however, this can vary depending on the individual.

    Existing research on college students and their sleep habits suggests that a lack of sleep can be a common factor in increasing depressive symptoms. In addition, people suffering from depression also tend to have disrupted sleep patterns, leading to a cycle of worsening already existing depressive symptoms (Dinis & Bragança, 2018).

    The focus on the camera is panned on some academic material while Robert is in the background studying.

    Although college can be a busy time for the majority of students, time management is an important skill to have. Regardless of how tempting it can be, cutting down on nightly sleep will only cause more trouble than it’s worth.

    References

    Dinis, João, and Miguel Bragança. “Quality of Sleep and Depression in College Students: A Systematic Review.” Sleep science (Sao Paulo, Brazil) vol. 11,4 (2018): 290-301. doi:10.5935/1984-0063.20180045

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    Story by:
    Robert Zoroiwchak, junior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior business management major

    Produced by:
    Lucas Taylor, senior English education major

    Putting Ourselves First

    Erika is holding her hat with the Rowan logo plastered on it.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. With the life that we are given, it is easy to want to do tasks for the benefit of others. But, as […]

    #PROFspective: Senior Theatre Major Kayla Bowe

    Today we highlight Kayla Bowe, a senior Theatre major from Swedesboro, NJ (Gloucester County). Kayla is also minoring in Psychology, has concentrations in Acting and Pre-Teaching, and has a certificate of undergraduate study (CUGS) in Shakespeare Studies. She discusses her major and goes into detail about her involvement in several clubs around campus.

    Why did you choose to study Theatre? 

    I went to a technical high school, and you pick a concentration. I chose theatre. Even though I was passionate about theatre, I was unsure of what major I wanted to pursue in college. I talked to my theatre teacher and she told me I could teach and study English. She explained I could be a theatre educator. This instantly sparked my interest. She then informed me on the colleges that had programs that fit both of those interests of mine. My professor went to Rowan and expressed that Rowan would also be a great school for my interests. 

    Is that why you came to Rowan?

    Yes and no. When I looked in the colleges with 4+1 programs, I learned that  Rowan was one of the very few schools that offers theatre education. But I was originally committed to another university. The summer before my first semester of college in June, the university reached out to me and said they had no more housing. They expressed that I needed to commute or find off campus housing. I instantly started panicking and I called Rowan’s Office of Admissions. I explained my situation and how I could not attend the university I intended to; I asked if I could enroll to Rowan since I was already accepted into the university. Admissions said yes, and within that short timeframe I was enrolled as a Rowan student.  

    And I was so thankful and kind of blessed that that happened because I think I’m way happier here than I would have been at the other university.

    Kayla Bowe poses inside Tohill Theatre.
    Kayla Bowe

    What’s your favorite moment or happiest memory here? 

    I have had the privilege of being in a lot of very fun shows here. I was in a show called “Failure: A Love Story.” From this experience I got to like being a professional swimmer and swim on a rolling stool. This was the first time I had the opportunity to be something so abstract and surrealistic. It was one of my favorite roles to this day. The show was also a student-run production directed by Maddie Roberts. It was a super awesome experience. 

    What’s your typical day like at Rowan?

    I am a TA for one of the theatre professors in their Intro to Performance course. So I usually go to that in the morning and assist Melanie Stewart. During this I help lead theatre games. I also am a federal work study student. So sometimes I work in the associate dean’s office in the College of Performing Arts or I work in the box office of Pfleeger Hall. Finally, I go to either On Camera Acting with Michael Dean Morgan, or I do Shakespeare I with Dr. Falck (which is one of my favorite classes I’ve taken here.)

    Kayla Bowe in Tohill Theatre in Bunce Hall.

    What is your favorite class?

    I loved all my psychology courses, which was I chose to minor in psychology. But having a CUGS in Shakespeare was the best decision I ever made mainly because of Dr. Falck. I believe she is an amazing educator and simply a genius in the theatre world. She’s so smart when it comes to like dissecting Shakespeare pieces, and the dramaturgy behind them. I learned so much just by having a CUGS in Shakespeare.

    What’s your favorite Shakespeare piece? 

    That’s tough. I’ve discovered so many new ones I’ve come to love. I found a new appreciation for “Othello,” despite the controversy behind it. For those who don’t know Othello, it’s about a Black man who was a head general and he ended up marrying a white woman. Throughout the show he’s just slandered and heavily criticized, and because of this he ends up going crazy. But I think now with production of Othello, it’s about reclaiming the Black point of view of Othello and making it personable, real, and not just some blackface character that would have been done hundreds of years ago.

    On a lighter note, I enjoy the comedy show titled “Twelfth Night.”

    Kayla Bowe posing in Tohill Theatre in Bunce Hall.

    Is there anything you want to mention or highlight about your time here at Rowan? 

    The most important thing, I think, for me, was just getting involved because I couldn’t imagine what my years of college would have been like if I wasn’t involved in all the clubs that I’m in and the programs I’ve done. These extracurriculars take up all of my time and without them my college lifestyle would be very uneventful. I am part of a lot.

    I’m president of Campus Players, which is a theatre-based organization. Within this we do workshops and a senior showcase for the senior theatre students. And we also do the banquet of theatre and dance artists, which is basically just an end of year celebration for theatre students and the professors. I’m also vice president of Alpha Psi Omega, which is the theatre honor society on campus. Anybody can be a part of it, you don’t have to be a theatre major, you just have to have a year of experience of theatre. And that’s always fun. 

    And I also am a part of the Chamberlain Student Center Advisory Board, which they started during COVID. It’s interesting to hear what all the other colleges are doing and their opinions on the changes that are trying to be made in the student center and within student life on campus.

    Final thoughts?

    You don’t have to be in the theatre department to be involved in what we do. Our mainstage season is open to anybody. Our student-run Lab Theatre productions are also open to anyone. Any student can also take theatre classes. If you want to be involved just reach out, we’re friendly. We don’t bite!

    Kayla Bowe smiling.

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    Story by:
    Natalie DePersia, junior public relations major

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior business management major

    Related posts:

    Passing the Torch: Theatre Educator Nick Flagg

    Queer Voices: Theatre Major Tyler “TJ” Jacobs

    Alumni Success: Rowan Graduates Take Over the Eagle Theatre

    #PROFspective: Psychology Major, Psi Sigma Phi Multicultural Fraternity Member Zyaire Harkins

    Zyaire stands outside James Hall.

    Today we speak to junior Psychology major Zyaire Harkins of Willingboro, NJ (Burlington County). Zyaire shares his PROFspective on campus activities, service opportunities in Greek life and his future professional goals. What inspired you to choose your major? I chose psychology during high school. I feel that the mental health field is very undervalued, and […]

    Ms. Wheelchair New Jersey Lea Donaghy on Advocacy and Education [VIDEO]

    Lea sits with her partner at a table in her wheelchair.

    Congratulations to Lea Donaghy, named Ms. Wheelchair New Jersey 2022 by the nonprofit Ms. Wheelchair America. “It allows me to advocate for my state, talk about my experience and things that I think we need to really improve upon in the disabled community,” says Lea. Her platform will be to provide better resources for college students coming into college with a disability.

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    The Rowan Blog Team’s Favorite Posts of 2021

    Drone shot over Wackar Stadium at sunset.

    This year, Rowan Blog published more than 500 posts spotlighting the people and places that make Rowan University our home away from home. Here, members of our team revisit a few of these stories and select those that stayed with us as we bid farewell to 2021. 

    Jars of Beekeeping Club honey packaged for sale.

    Rowan Beekeeping Club Launches: A Q & A with President Michael Hoban

    Read the full story here

    “I loved learning about the Beekeeping Club by Michael. He was so passionate about this club and saving the bees. He informed me on so much information about bee pollination and extracting the honey. I was never educated on this information prior to interviewing him.” – Natalie DePersia, junior public relations major


    Nicole smiles in the fiction stacks of Rowan Barnes and Noble.

    Finding My Path and Passion with an English Degree

    Read the full story here

    “I believe [Nicole] shows that although she was not sure about what to do with her major at first, she ended up finding a job she loves and enjoys. I personally love this quote: ‘Here was a career path that let me balance my desire to help others with the analytical skills I’d developed as an English major.’” – Valentina Giannattasio, first year dance and marketing double major


    Ayanna smiles at the New York City Pride Parade.

    Ayanna Johnson Reflects on New York City Pride Parade

    Read the full story here

    “I love Ayanna — amazing personality, very vocal!” – Nene Diallo, senior public relations major


    One of the pieces of artwork sold by Taylor at the Philadelphia Art Show.

    Studio Art Majors Taylor Brown and Abby Leitinger Featured in Philadelphia Art Show

    Read the full story here

    “I thought this piece was so interesting. I loved learning about these two artists on the rise and the differences they hold while creating their pieces. It was interesting to see the art they produced and how they use different mediums.” – Natalie DePersia


    Sarah and Madeline McClure hug at the Rowan Prof statue.

    Sisters on SGA: Madeline and Sarah McClure

    Read the full story here

    “I was really happy with the way my photographs turned out, and I especially loved getting to meet and know Sarah and Madeline McClure. They were the absolute sweetest and such a joy to work with!” – Missy Pavorsky, junior advertising major


    Victoria kisses her son Rowen on Rowan Boulevard.

    Meet Transfer Profs: 3+1 Psychology Student and Mother Victoria Hable

    Read the full story here

    “Victoria’s story is an impactful one. Any story of a person being a parent and going to college is amazing, and I’m proud of all of them. However, Victoria’s story shows that even if there is an unexpected change during your college career, Rowan will help you get to the finish line.” – Rachel Rumsby, junior communication studies and public relations double major


    Dr. Santos smiles inside Business Hall.

    Faculty PROFile: Journey into the Entrepreneurial Mindset with Dr. Susana C. Santos, Rohrer College of Business

    Read the full story here

    “I first learned of Dr. Santos when she won the Excellence in Online Learning award from Rowan Global Learning and Partnerships (she has since won this award again, the first faculty member to do so). I was really impressed with the creativity and care she imbues into her instruction, especially when she couldn’t interact with students face-to-face. We also share a mutual love of the ‘How I Built This’ podcast, which Dr. Santos uses in her coursework.” – Christina Lynn, digital content strategist


    A photo of Chloe as she graduated from Rowan at the Prof statue.

    Rowan Abroad: Recent Graduate, Chloe Senatore, Talks Acceptance into Trinity College in Dublin

    Read the full story here

    “It showcases how amazing the Rowan English Department by highlighting the accomplishments of one of its students.” – Bianca Gray, senior English major

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    Header photo: One of our favorite campus photos of the year, taken at sunset in Sept. 2021

    The Journaling Journey

    Brianna journals on the lawn next to the Campbell Library.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    Brianna looks down on the Campbell Library from above.

    Journaling has always been something of a joke to our society. We make it out to be something that only teenage girls with crushes and secrets should be doing. But truthfully, journaling, which can also be described as a form of “affect labeling” (putting words to emotion), has been shown to be a great emotional regulation technique, according to Dr. Marianna Pogosyan in her article “Put Your Feelings Into Words, You’ll Feel Better” (Pogosyan, 2021). 

    But what is emotional regulation, and why should it matter?

    Understanding what you feel and being able to label it is a great way to make someone feel more in control of themselves, as well as in a seemingly impossible situation.

    When a person can journal about a situation and express how they are feeling in a more controlled manner, they can be introspective on it later. Also, at the moment or directly after, journaling can help by being a distracter from the intensity of emotions. This is important because it can teach a person to act more rationally rather than acting on an impulse they might regret in the future.

    Brianna sits in the Campbell Lbrary, in front of book stacks, on Rowan's campus.

    Even outside of high-stress situations, journaling can be a very helpful tool. Not only can a journal be a place for one to keep their personal thoughts, it can also be an asset to any organizational tool box.

    When journaling, typically people will discuss the highlights/events that have occurred over a span of time. When organizing, someone who journals can use the past information to find patterns in their life in order to help set up for future events or times to be flexible.

    Brianna journals on the lawn by the Campbell Library.

    In almost all forms, journaling is a great idea. From writing down goals to working through stressful experiences, the act of writing things down can benefit our lives. And, while labeling is not something we should do all the time, affect labeling might just help us through some stressful times.

    References: 

    Sussex Publishers. (n.d.). Put your feelings into words, you’ll feel better. Psychology Today. Retrieved September 18, 2021, from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/between-cultures/202109/put-your-feelings-words-youll-feel-better.

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    Story by:
    Brianna Broadwater, sophomore psychology major from Bel Air, Maryland, Wellness Center intern

    Photos by:
    Jack Maisonneuve, senior communication studies major

    Manifesting a Life of Dreams: How To Use the Power of Manifestation to Turn Dreams Into Reality

    Psychology major Mel poses in a gazebo near Bunce Hall.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    The concept that one’s thoughts, beliefs, intentions and emotions are inexorably linked to the opportunities present in one’s life might sound far-fetched at best. However, as humans residing in an interconnected campus community, much can be said about the power of one’s thoughts when it comes to creating a life only conceptualized in dreams.

    Psychology major Mel poses on the steps of Bunce Hall.

    Manifestation, essentially the practice of aligning one’s thoughts, beliefs and intentions with positively linked goals, isn’t purely a phenomenon rooted in pseudoscience. Positive Psychology, a subfield of Psychology, emphasizes curating a quality life — one that is replete with positive life experiences, that elevates the self and brings a renewed sense of optimism. “Research shows that our expectations, positive or negative, tend to be confirmed. This is what is known as a self-fulfilling prophecy. So, if we expect to bring our idea to life or reach our goal, we’re more likely to.” (Davis, 1).

    In that sense, manifestation most certainly finds its place as a skill set that will prove enduringly useful, even if only to provide comfort and hope to those who believe in the power of its effects.

    Psychology major Mel looks up in front of a side entrance at Bunce Hall.

    So, how exactly does one manifest? Start by determining which medium is most comfortable — whether that’s a pen and a paper, a sketchpad or notebook, don’t be afraid to get creative in how to embark on this manifestation journey.

    Manifestation starts first by determining what exactly one desires. Take care to be as realistic and specific as possible when identifying these wants and employing mental visualization as often as possible to increase the potential of the manifestation occurring. For example, looking to get a new car? To get straight A’s during the semester?

    All of these desires are easily attainable; however, ground all intentions by understanding that, regardless, some practical work will need to be put in to manifest these opportunities. Using the previous examples, if looking to acquire a new car, let writing the goal be the first step in a pragmatic, proactive plan: getting a job, budgeting properly and ensuring money is being saved to turn this dream into a reality are all constructive ways to craft one’s very own manifestation practice.

    In addition, looking to get straight A’s can certainly be a goal worth adding to any manifestation. Start by handing in assignments on time, don’t be afraid to ask for tutoring (the Rowan Success Network is an amazing resource to get free tutoring for Rowan students) and be sure to actively participate in class. These are all excellent ways to positively influence the potential of manifesting the desired outcome.

    Psychology major Mel sits on the front steps of Bunce Hall.

    In short, manifestation is simply a useful, positive, life-enhancing way to focus and train one’s thoughts and intentions in a manner that helps to inspire action. Entrenched within inspired action, however, one can definitively discover one’s fullest potential while traversing the path toward achieving dreams and desires only once previously conceptualized.

    References:

    What is Manifestation? Science-Based Ways to Manifest: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/click-here-happiness/202009/what-is-manifestation-science-based-ways-manifest

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    Story by:
    Mel Steward-Cobbs, senior psychology major from Philadelphia, PA, Wellness Center intern

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major

    One Will Never Have To “Work Hard” If They Set SMART Goals

    Erika poses in front of a tree.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    Ever heard the saying “Work smarter, not harder?” Well, it’s a phrase that holds true. Here’s why: If one works harder, they will only exert their utmost energy and end up left on E like a car without gasoline. However, if one works smarter, then they work more strategically and thoroughly.

    Working hard can only get one so far. That’s why setting SMART goals is conducive to success. Whether or not one believes it, there is such a thing as “SMART” goals. Smart goals are very effective game changers to some individuals who use them. Personally, they have worked for me, and I’ve been able to benefit from them ever since. 

    Erika poses next to a tree.

    According to author Thomas Rutledge from Psychology Today, SMART goals were actually created using an evidence-based formula. “SMART” stands for: Specific—clearly identifying the goal, Measurable—defining the goal in measurable terms, Attainable—choosing goals that are realistic and manageable, Relevant–making sure the goal is something that is important to oneself, and Time-bound—defining the time frame during which one will achieve the goal (Source: Thomas Rutledge). This method requires that one apply each step to a particular goal. SMART goals are convenient because they can actually be used in all aspects of one’s life. 

    Some examples of how one can use this method are for the gym if one wants to set up workout routines or start a workout plan/program, academics and test taking, job/apartment hunting, cleaning routines, starting one’s own YouTube channel, saving money, spending and budgeting, etc.

    A really simple example of how I used SMART goals over this past year was by connecting it to my New Year’s resolution of growing my hair out. I have always cut half of my hair off each year since freshman year. For my senior year, I decided to do something different. Since I haven’t had my hair long in such a long time, I figured to keep it growing until I graduate to see my overall hair growth progress in a healthy way.

    Erika poses in front of a tree.

    The way I set this up was: Specific—no cutting my hair, only small trims and growing it the longest it’s ever been, Measurable—since I will be slightly trimming my hair each month, I will give myself until the end of this semester and the next to grow my hair the longest it’s been before, Attainable—I’ve grown my hair out before so I know I can do it again with additional length this time around, Relevant—I focus a lot on my haircare since I do believe it is my best feature so it is significantly important to me because I can style it in many ways, Time-bound—I will utilize this whole year of 2021 going into 2022 as a timestamp. So far this year, I’m still going strong on growing it out and I’m proud of it because learning to manage a specific hair type or hair in general is similar to that of a chore.

    SMART has helped me grow my hair out strategically rather than putting loads of products in my hair and expecting instant growth. Growth takes time and I now think of SMART goals as my accountability partner, which have improved my skills and time management overall.

    Reference: Beyond SMART: An Evidence-Based Formulate for Goal Setting

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    Story by:
    Erika Morales Sanchez, senior psychology major from Bergen County, NJ, Wellness Center intern

    Photos by:
    Rachel Rumsby, junior communication studies and public relations double major

    Transfer to Transformed: Five Students Share

    Exterior shot of a walkway near Wilson Hall.

    Rowan Blog celebrates National Transfer Student Week and partners with the Office of Student Success Programs in spotlighting five students who have found their new college home at Rowan University. Victoria (Tore) Butler, Elementary Education and Literacy Studies major who transferred from The University of Scranton in fall 2019 Why did you select to transfer […]

    Moods: Where To Go On Campus When You Feel A Certain Way

    Rowan Boulevard and the Glassblower statue.

    Rowan students and alumni reveal popular spots to eat, hang out and socialize on campus.

    Where to go on campus when you want to socialize with friends

    “When I want to socialize with my friends on campus, I like to go downtown to different restaurants like Playa Bowls and LaScala’s Fire.” – junior Supply Chain & Logistics and Marketing major Jenna Scarpa

    “When I am on campus, I love going to sporting events and the Student Center to get together and socialize with my friends!” – senior Psychology major Lucille Villani

    Richard Wackar Stadium where football, lacrosse, field hockey, and track events take place.
    Richard Wackar Stadium, where football, lacrosse, field hockey, and track and field events take place

    “I enjoy going to Holly Pointe Cafe to socialize with friends because the atmosphere gives off very welcoming vibes through the music and staff. Plus who doesn’t love to get something to eat while they are chatting?” – senior Math Education major CJ Barrett

    As you can see above, Rowan offers many different places to socialize with your friends. From sporting events and walkable restaurants to Holly Pointe Commons Cafe, there are so many communal spaces to sit back and enjoy quality time with friends. 

    Holly Pointe Cafe.
    Glassworks Cafe located in Holly Pointe Commons

    Where to go on campus when you want to study/sit in a quiet space

    “Whenever I need a place to study or somewhere quiet, I love going to the Campbell Library on campus or Barnes and Noble. It helps me focus and I find that I get a lot more work done when I’m there!” – sophomore Athletic Training major Hannah Lombardo

    Outside of Barnes and Noble on Rowan Boulevard.
    Barnes and Noble on Rowan Boulevard

    “Being a commuter, I would sit in my car and study in between classes. The best lot is by Bunce Hall because it’s small, less traffic, and there’s a nice view while working.” – senior Theatre and Advertising major Nick Flagg 

    “If I have a lot of work to get done or need to study for a test, I usually go to Campbell Library or a study pod in the Science [Hall] building. I work really productively in places that are quiet and aren’t that busy!” – junior Biological Sciences major Harley Rosenzweig 

    Study areas available in the Rowan Campbell Library.
    Study areas available in the Rowan Campbell Library

    Rowan has many options when seeking out a quiet place to study or have some alone time. Many students enjoy the library or Barnes and Noble downtown to tackle some work, and students can even find a good spot to relax on the lawn chairs in front of Robinson Hall and next to Wilson Hall. 

    Where to go on campus when you want to grab a bite to eat

    “Freshens was always a go to spot. Being able to customize a healthy option along with the convenience of being able to order on my phone made it a staple.” – alumnus and Liberal Studies major Daniel Corvo

    Student Center Cafeteria.
    Student Center Cafe

    “Freshens in the Student Center is my go-to place for food in between classes or after practice! The food is SO good and filling!! LaScala’s on Rowan Boulevard is also really good.” – senior Elementary Education and Biological Sciences major Johanna Diehl

    Lascala's Fire on Rowan Boulevard.
    Lascala’s Fire on Rowan Boulevard.

    “Whenever I need a healthier option I love going to Fresh off the Grill [Grill Nation] and ordering grilled chicken sandwiches. They have a ton of topping options so you can really make it yours.” – alumnus and Mechanical Engineering graduate Frank Cianciotta

    “The Boulevard has so many options of different restaurants to choose from! There’s such a great range of different kinds of food, no matter what I’m in the mood for they have it!” – senior Finance major Bethany Sansone

    Dawn to Dusk on Rowan Boulevard.
    Dawn to Dusk on Rowan Boulevard, a local favorite for breakfast, lunch and dinner

    There are many options available when students are looking for a bite to eat. Students can use a meal swipe at Glassworks Dining Hall located in Holly Pointe Commons, the Student Center, or Rowan Boulevard to restaurants like LaScala’s Fire, Dawn to Dusk, El Mariachi and more. 

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    Story By:
    Natalie DePersia, junior public relations major

    Select photos by:
    RJ Wentzell, senior exercise science major

    Looking Back on What I Learned My First Year of College

    Natalie sits with her coworker Reshaun on campus.

    Rowan Blog contributor, Public Relations major and student athlete Natalie DePersia shares her take on the first-year experience.

    What I learned first year year of college was to take one deep breath in, one deep breath out, and to take a look around.

    My first year, just two short years ago … seems like a different universe to the current world we live in. Reflecting back on my past two years as a Rowan student, I have came up with a list of things I learned from my first year of college; what I have learned from starting a normal first year to having it be cut short by a global pandemic.

    As a rising junior, so much much has happened in what feels like such a short amount of time. Approaching your first year can be nerve-wracking, exciting, and can come with a mixture of emotions. A way to ease any anxiety or uneasiness is to get involved in some way around campus.

    Natalie standing in front of Gazebo.
    Natalie DePersia

    Join college clubs, extracurricular activities, and get involved around campus

    Getting involved around campus is imperative to finding new friends and taking a break from your academic course load. I play on the Women’s Lacrosse Team at Rowan, and from this experience I have developed friendships that will last a lifetime. College clubs, extracurriculars and even sports are a great way to find others with the same interests of you. 

    Rowan Women Lacrosse Team and Alumni.
    Rowan Women’s Lacrosse team and alumni after the annual alumni game in 2019.

    Staying organized is the key to my success

    Being a first-year student in college can be stressful. The adjustment from high school to college can be a very different experience depending on who you ask. Personally, the adjustment had its easy moments and its hard moments. In high school I did homework based off of memory. This worked most of the time. However, I did experience the occasional “Oh no I forgot to do an assignment … let me finish it quickly 10 minutes before the class starts.”

    Having a planner and a system to organize myself has been my saving grace as a busy college student. Between lacrosse practice, in-person meetings, classes online or in person, to internship hours and assignments … having a planner is essential to my success and punctuality academically, athletically and professionally. 

    Be grateful for what you have when you have it

    I wonder how I am approaching my junior year as I remember first-year orientation like it was yesterday. Time goes by so quickly and I feel as if I did not truly appreciate what my first year was because I assumed I had three more years just like it. Having a normal college experience the most of my first year to going into lockdown by a global pandemic my entire sophomore year only made me realize that I need to appreciate what I have when I have it. I was taught by Covid-19 to expect the unexpected and to make the most of every moment given.

    Natalie and lacrosse teammate Reilly before home game.
    My lacrosse teammate, Reilly, and I before our last home lacrosse game before our season was cut short by Covid-19 in Spring 2020.

    Apply yourself because you owe it to yourself

    This one is my favorite. I was a decent student in high school. I did what I needed to do, and I was ok with receiving any grade from A to B range. When I got to Rowan I realized I was not striving for my maximum potential and I needed to start working harder if I wanted to accomplish the goals I set aside for myself. I can happily say that I am now a 4.0 student successfully balancing academic course work of a major in Public Relations and a double minor in Sports Communication and Psychology, athletic responsibilities of playing on a women’s collegiate lacrosse team, and professional efforts of working two jobs. It took me a little time to realize, but anything is truly possible if you set your mind to it and put in the work.

    Networking is imperative

    Networking has so many positive outcomes. Networking can bring you internship or job opportunities, introduce you to new friends or a new hobby and more. I found an internship by reaching out to one of my favorite professors, Cristin Kastner Farney. You never know what opportunities can arise if you talk with others and are simply a friendly face. Being kind can go a long way in your academic and professional career. 

    Natalie with fellow employee and friend Reshaun.
    My fellow employee and friend Reshaun and I sitting outside of Bunce Hall.

    If you gather anything from this piece I hope you learn to take one deep breath in, one deep breath out, and to take a look around. College and life in general go by fast. Do not let the little things stress you out, everything has a way of working itself out. Be present in the moment because sooner than later you will be entering your junior year writing a reflection piece and wondering where the time has gone.

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    Story by:
    Natalie DePersia, junior public relations major

    Photos courtesy of Natalie DePersia and by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major

    Back-to-School Bucket List of Rowan Juniors and Seniors

    Writing a list of goals

    We’re so close to the beginning of the new semester, let’s kick it off with a college bucket list by sharing some students’ ambitions.

    “I’m looking forward to everyone moving in and meeting more new people since my freshman year got cut short. One of my must do’s when I get back on campus this fall is to attend more basketball and football games. Also I can’t wait to go to the engineering building and go to the pond, I find it very relaxing.” – Anais Holguin, junior Marketing major from Perth Amboy, NJ (Middlesex County) 

    Anais Holguin sits near the Engineering pond.
    Anais Holguin

    “My friend and I are on a mission to find the best lunch specials for $15 or under around campus. So far Alaura Kitchen or Family Mediterranean (both located in Pitman) are the winners! There are so many different places to explore around campus and it is so much fun to do it with friends. Also thrifting is a hoot. The lunch spot I’m excited to visit again is Au Bon Pain, it’s opening back up and I NEED their croissants.” – Meena Young, senior Biological Sciences major from Sickerville, NJ (Camden County) 

    Exterior shot of Au Bon Pain.
    Au Bon Pain

    “I am extremely excited to be student teaching this year and to finally have in-person classes again. I miss interacting with my peers and being on campus. I miss studying at James Hall, the education building and the library and those are spots I look forward to visiting again.” – London Raikes, senior Inclusive and Elementary Education major from Deptford, NJ (Gloucester County) 

    London leans against a sign of James Hall.
    London Raikes

    “I am involved in quite a few organizations on campus. I’m most looking forward to continuing my role as the Blood Services Undergraduate Coordinator for the Office of Volunteerism. There are many things on my bucket list this year and that includes living in an on-campus apartment, seeing my South Jersey friends, walking near Town Square, taking most of my core Finance and MIS courses and exploring campus with my friends.” Sasmita Prabu, junior Finance major from Somerset County, NJ

    Drone shot of Glassboro Town Square.
    Town Square

    I’m looking forward to finally being in person again. Looking at a screen for 18 months has been really sad, it feels like so much of the college experience was lost. At least I’ll be less tempted to fall asleep during class. I am going to be an RA this year, so I am excited to meet new people and help others have a great return to Rowan. I have many things on my bucket list and that includes: going to the Fitness Center and working out with my friends, having movie nights with my friends in their apartments, going to Cookie Munchers and eating more calories in 10 minutes than you’re supposed to eat in two days, riding the shuttles to the movie theater, having an advisor meeting in person, taking free electives to pursue other passions rather than fulfilling requirements, plus eating at Smoked again.” – RJ Wentzell, senior Exercise Science major of Pilesgrove, NJ (Salem County)

    RJ Wentzell smiling outside of James Hall
    RJ Wentzell

    “A couple of things I look forward to this school year are my campus event Emo Night, planning concerts, writing music and finishing my junior year. I haven’t seen Dennis Diblasio [since before COVID], I’m looking forward to seeing him. – junior Malachi Prillerman of Palmyra, NJ (Burlington County), Music Industry major and transfer student from Hampton University

    Music industry major Malachi Prillerman
    Malachi Prillerman

    “This year, I hope to get accepted as a transfer ambassador. A must do is to visit a restaurant during a social hour. Academically, I look forward to receiving high grades, building connections with my professors and receiving a letter of recommendation.” – De’Ja Morris of Woodbury, NJ (Gloucester County), senior Finance major and transfer student from Salem Community College

    De'ja stands on the bridge near Business Hall.
    De’ja Morris

    “This September, I look forward to going back to regular class, walking around and seeing new faces. A few things I would like to do again this semester are seeing all my friends from freshman year, visiting the Rec Center, eating at the Student Center and playing sports.” – Hualsy Paredes, junior Construction Management major from Fort Lee, NJ (Bergen County) and transfer student from Utica College

    Exterior shot of campus Rec Center.
    Rec Center

    I am really excited to graduate. I’ve been working really hard since COVID to maintain my grades just for this moment. I really like the club fair every fall. I’m excited for that! I’m also really excited to study in the library again. I am most looking forward to in-person classes.” – Alexa Wentworth, senior Psychology major from West Windsor, NJ (Mercer County)

    Alexa smiles inside James Hall.
    Alexa Wentworth

    “Being able to go to clubs, meeting up at the Student Center and getting food together, being able to see my professors in person, and visiting Science Hall again.” – Andrew Pinto, junior Physics major from Hammonton, NJ (Atlantic County)

    Exterior shot of Science Hall from Route 322.
    Science Hall

    “I came into Rowan as a transfer so I haven’t tried anything yet. I’m sad because I lost a year so I want to be as involved as possible. This year, I’m looking forward to seeing my fellow peers, raising my GPA and attending football games.” – senior Tara Preston of Camden County, NJ, Economics major and transfer student from Delaware County Community College

    Rowan's football team enters the stadium.
    Rowan Football

    “A must do with my friends is going to RoBo and getting pizza. Academically, I look forward to staying busy with classes and making new friends in class.” Maria Espejo, junior Psychology major from River Edge, NJ (Bergen County)

    Rowan Boulevard featuring LaScala's Fire.
    Rowan Boulevard

    “I’m most looking forward to seeing Discovery Hall this year and to go to football, basketball and hockey games with my friends.” – Lauren Blaze of Branchburg, NJ (Somerset County), senior Civil and Environmental Engineering major

    Lauren smiles and stands in front of Discovery Hall.
    Lauren Blaze

    “Being able to socialize with new classmates and professors! I haven’t seen   Dr. Bhatia in person since before COVID, I am very much looking forward to seeing him on campus this fall. Looking forward to social events, clubs and  projects.” – senior Hayley Lomas of Woodbury, NJ (Gloucester County), a Mechanical Engineering major with a CUG in Aerospace Engineering and transfer student from Rowan College of South Jersey

    Exterior shot of the Campbell Library entrance.
    Hayley looks forward to going to Campbell Library again this fall.

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    Story by:
    Nene Diallo, senior public relations major

    Photos by:
    Reshaun Timmons, Stephanie Batista, RJ Wentzell and Anthony Raisley

    Rowan Football photo courtesy of:
    University Publications

    Why Psychology Major Leah Boyle Chose to Study Close to Home

    Leah stands in front of a tree on Bunce Green.

    Today we speak with Leah Boyle, who recently graduated with a degree in Psychology. Leah comes from Haddonfield, NJ in Camden County and is a first-generation college student. She had been an on-campus resident all four years and worked as an RA (Resident Assistant) for the LGBTQIA+ Learning Community in Holly Pointe for the last two years.

    Why did you choose a university close to home? 

    My sister went [to Rowan]. She’s a year older than me and she graduated last year. We are very, very close and when she went to Rowan, I knew that they had a great psychology program. We were roommates in Holly Pointe my freshman year. We had an apartment together with our friends. She’s one of my best friends. That was why I chose [Rowan] and it ended up being a great opportunity. Everything about it has been awesome. It was more for family. 

    How do you carve out an identity for yourself if you are with a sibling in the same place? 

    Shannon, my older sister, specifically was an Art major. She was working on that, and I became interested in the Social Justice office. [I] started working at the office of Social Justice Inclusion and Conflict Resolution (SJICR). I worked on their programming and it got me thinking about what we do for our queer students, which got me to becoming an RA. She ended up making a club for women in our arts programs (Women of Westby, W.O.W). I was able to get my residence to come to W.O.W. events and she was able to bring the arts to my residence. So we were able to connect a lot [that way]. She was really successful in her art. I was doing my psychology and social justice stuff. We started out the same but went in different directions.

    Leah wears glasses and a Rowan t-shirt smiling in front of Bunce Hall.

    Did you ever feel overshadowed by having a sibling here? 

    Well, I’m not an artist! I didn’t really know much about how Shannon is such a good artist until I would meet with her in the art building. [We’d] go get food together, see her stuff and [witness] people talk about her and her art. She is an incredible oil painter. So I didn’t [feel] overshadowed because I don’t do a lot in the arts. I took an oil painting class last semester on Zoom and had to call her every day to get tips. We had our own things that we specialized in. It was good to see her grow in her art. She got a lot of involvement in social justice too.  

    What was it like to live with your sister in a university location after living together for your whole life? 

    It was much messier because we had bigger rooms now. We’ve shared a room since I was seven. I say everything that is hers is mine. She lives in Maryland now. It’s a lot more arguments about where things should be put, but it was great. My sophomore year we had an apartment with four other friends in university housing. It was really great because there’s no one you could be more honest with than your sister. I could say, “I can’t be around you right now.” I can be honest with my roommate because she is my sister.

    Rowan was really accommodating to [me] living with a sophomore my freshman year. They had no problems and they were so happy for us. I’m happy we were able to do it because now she’s doing her own thing. I’m moving after this. I’m going to grad school at Montclair State University.

    Leah chats with her friend Kevin on Bunce Green.

    Do you have any other majors, minors or CUGs? 

    I took Child Life courses at University of California Santa Barbara, where I study hospitalization. I’m going to Montclair State for Child Psychology. 

    What is it like not living with your sister? 

    In the beginning, it was kind of a bummer. I’m happy I didn’t have to go live with someone who wasn’t her. I got used to it. It’s a little far (I’m up near New York) so we make weekends to see each other. She calls me and I call her probably a little too much. It’s not so bad, we’re [still] in constant contact.

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    Story by: 
    Marian Suganob, public relations and advertising graduate

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major

    5 Interesting On-Campus Jobs

    Rowan Blog student worker Bianca on the job at a photo shoot.

    Finding the right on-campus job can change your whole college experience, leading you to important connections, helping you discover your career goals or letting you find the right school/work/life balance. Five students share their experiences in some of the most interesting, beneficial and well-paid jobs on campus!

    Summer Conference Assistant – Chase Campbell

    Chase Campbell smiles for his portrait in front of Bunce Hall.

    Advertising major Chase Campbell of Burlington County worked as a Summer Conference Assistant for the Office of Conference & Event Services in 2019. As part of a staff of eight students, Chase worked and lived with his teammates! This job offers a stipend and free summer housing. He found this job through the Rowan Announcer and attended an informational session.  

    Some of the responsibilities in this job included helping people check into the conferences, preparing residential and event spaces and taking turns being the 24/7 customer service representative for the events. Chase learned the importance of being himself rather than just being the “perfect customer service representative.” He enjoyed speaking with clients and helping them feel welcome to the university with kindness. Look out for this job if you enjoy working on a team and assisting people! 

    Academic Success Coach – Alee Rebillon

    Alee works on her laptop and chats with a friend.

    Alee Rebillon, a senior Psychology major from Mercer County, worked as an Academic Success Coach her junior year for one semester. She found this opportunity through an email listing Federal Work-Study (FWS) options. She also spoke to their department staff at the on-campus Fall Job Fair. As a psych major, Alee felt this would give her great experience in working with people one-to-one. Although, Academic Success Coaches come from all different majors and walks of life! 

    Alee worked with fellow students who needed guidance in lots of different areas! Such as, who to speak to if they want to change majors, where to find a student organization, or even how to make a schedule for themselves. She learned so much about herself, other students, and the university from this job. She has helped people receive supports through the Wellness Center and Tutoring Services; she also walked students through how to use The Shop or Prof Jobs. If you want to help other students by being a relatable source of guidance, this job is for you! 

    Picking Peppers with President Houshmand – Dyone Payne

    Dyone holds a bucket of peppers fresh from the farm.

    Public Relations major Dyone Payne, a senior from Gloucester County, worked for Dr. Houshmand, Rowan University’s president, on his local farm picking peppers and several other vegetables. They use the peppers to create the famous Houshmand’s Hazardous Hot Sauce, which is processed in a factory (by professionals) in Bridgeton. All proceeds from the Hot Sauce go towards the Student Scholarship Fund. The amazing part of this job is that they work to support students on all levels of operation in the making of this hot sauce. A team of students, Houshmand, and his staff go out to the West Campus farm throughout the spring and summer to begin the process. 

    Dyone remembers enjoying the hands-on experience and learning so much about the different kinds of peppers and sauces. The ghost peppers went into the hottest flavor, the mushroom peppers were the mildest peppers, and jalapeno peppers also went into the mildest sauce. She also shared how kind the staff was, always making sure the students were hydrated and offering transportation to and from the farm. Another responsibility of this role was selling the Hot Sauce (and Hot Sauce merch) at university football games, basketball games, and university holiday parties. She enjoyed being able to connect with the university staff and see that they truly understand the students’ struggles. 

    Dyone found this job through Rowan emails and contacted the president’s staff. She learned important life skills such as the importance of patience and taking your time. She also appreciates the president’s mission, even more, knowing that he is genuinely kind and interested in caring for Rowan students. Dyone also recalls the students having to leave their phones (because the pepper residue may get to your eyes and face through your phone). This helped the students to connect with each other and forge strong friendships. She absolutely adores plants and keeps a lovely mini garden oasis in her room now!

    Engineering Intern – Jed Vergara 

    Students working in the RU Sustainable Facilities Center with faculty.

    Students working in the RU Sustainable Facilities Center with faculty (Jed Vergara not pictured).

    RU Sustainable Facilities Center – Rowan University + NJARNG (NJ Army National Guard) Building Information Modeling (BIM) Intern

    Jed Vergara worked as a Building Information Modeling (BIM) Intern for more than two years as a Rowan undergraduate. This internship was under Rowan’s Sustainable Facilities Center in contract with the NJ Army National Guard (NJARNG). It’s offered as both a part-time job as well as an engineering clinic on campus. He first discovered this role at the beginning of his sophomore year after a professor shared the opportunity because of Jed’s stellar grades. 

    The internship also offers different roles in the operation. Some interns would inspect recruitment centers across NJ for the Army National Guard, and others like Jed worked on building information modeling (BIM). BIM is basically cataloging several parts of a building such as spatial measurements, construction materials, HVAC, electrical or plumbing. In the 50 years the buildings have been around, there have been so many refurbishments added that no single catalog of the buildings records all of the changes. Rowan was contracted to change this and catalog every NJARNG recruitment center in the South Jersey area. 

    Jed was able to work with a 3D laser scanner and connect individual room scans into a large model of the building on a program called Revvit. The basic three-step process of his internship was to scan the building, consolidate all of the scans, and finally add the details. He greatly appreciates this internship experience because he works with images of building scans as a Structural Engineer. He also found that his experiences with different computer programs proved to be very valuable in his career. Many times, Jed had to quickly learn how to use a program and help others learn how to use it as well. Another valuable lesson he learned was how to plan effectively and efficiently. This internship is open to civil engineering majors, electrical & computer engineering majors (ECE) and mechanical engineering majors. This department is located within Rowan Hall (the original Engineering building).

    Rowan Blog Digital Content Contributor – Bianca Torres

    Bianca stands confidently in front of a brick building on Rowan Boulevard.

    Lastly, we speak with Bianca Torres, a Music Industry major and senior from Morris County, who works as a fellow Digital Content Contributor for Rowan Blog. Bianca helps the blog run smoothly in so many different ways! She not only creates content for the Admissions page, but she also contributes to the Humans of Rowan Instagram and other Rowan social media platforms. Bianca finds ways to market the school to incoming first year and transfer students. She loves sharing the vibrancy of campus life through stories. She started off creating music for the background of Rowan’s YouTube videos. She has since branched out into photography, writing articles, interviewing leads and strategy (planning stories and Google Ads). Bianca appreciates how much knowledge she has learned about journalism and marketing in this role. 

    She really enjoys working with fellow college students and diving into the campus culture (which helps her with networking). The schedule is super flexible and was perfect for working during the pandemic because it can be remote and you can work whenever you choose. She enjoys how much freedom she has gotten in this job, being able to pitch stories and share so many unique perspectives at Rowan. This real-world experience has taught her how to market effectively to different target audiences. Knowing that the skills she uses every day, such as blogging and creating graphics for social media, she feels confident in her career goals. Without this job, Bianca would not have known that she wants to do digital marketing for the music industry.  

    Bianca found this job through an email from the program director of the music industry program. She advises students looking for student jobs to start looking as soon as possible and ask their professors if they know of any openings! Many professors have side gigs and know other connections on campus. She also says to check if you qualify for Federal Work-Study (FWS). If you enjoy connecting with people and making creative content, working for Rowan Blog is for you.

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    Story by:
    Marian Suganob, senior public relations and advertising double major

    Related posts:

    5 RAs Share the Benefits of Living on Campus

    Rec Center Confessions: Student Workers Share

    #PROFspective: Natalie DePersia, Public Relations Major and Lacrosse Athlete

    Natalie poses on the bridge in front of Mimosa Hall.

    Today, we feature junior Natalie DePersia, a Public Relations major with minors in Psychology and Sports Communication and Media. Natalie shares her experience at Rowan as a student and lacrosse athlete.

    Do you live on campus, or do you commute? 

    “I live off campus in a house across from the football field.”

    What are some likes and dislikes of your major?

    “I was originally a Communication Studies major, but it was too broad for me. I enjoy writing because it forces me to come out of my shell. Since I just started in this field, I don’t have any dislikes yet.”

    Natalie poses next to some greenery.

    How is your experience at Rowan so far?

    “All of my professors, especially Professor Cristin Kastner Farney, Professor Sherry Hicks and my coaches are genuinely caring and are very helpful. As a student-athlete, I started off as a defender even though I wanted to be a midfielder. Because of Covid, I could not play from September to February. Eventually, I progressed my way back to playing lacrosse, but it’s been inconsistent and challenging. I hope to start back up in fall 2021. Overall, I have had a good experience at Rowan so far.”

    Why Rowan?

    “I first looked into Rowan because my brother attended the school as a basketball athlete. I live pretty close, which makes it convenient as well. In my junior year of high school, I played lacrosse and wanted to play it at Rowan. Everything Rowan offered was convenient. I ended up liking the school after visiting.”

    Do you have a job? 

    “I’m a server at PJ Whelihan’s in Medford, and so far the job’s been cool.”

    What do you like to do for fun? 

    “I enjoy hanging out with friends, spending time with my dog, playing lacrosse and working out. I also like writing and singing my own songs, just not in front of people.”

    Natalie sits in a gazebo near Bunce Hall.

    What is one interesting fact about yourself?

    “I have a twin brother, but we don’t share the same birthdays. I was born at midnight and he was born the hour before. I also have two older twin brothers.”

    What is your dream job?

    “My dream job is to travel, meet people, hear and write their stories.”

    Do you have any life advice for Rowan students?

    “You are capable of more than you think you are. Challenge yourself.”

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    Story by: Nene Diallo, senior public relations major

    Photography by: Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major, and Reshaun Timmons, senior business major

                                   

    Queer Voices: Psychology Major Ella Emmer

    This interview was originally featured on the Queer Voices Instagram page @queer_voices. 

    Biomedical Art and Visualization major Emerson Harman created the Queer Voices Project, which is working “to amplify LGBTQ+ student, faculty, and alumni voices at Rowan University through portraits and interviews.” You can also find more of their content here.

    Name, pronouns, and identity?

    My name is Ella Emmer, my pronouns are she/her, and identify as gay.

    What is your year in school and your major?

    I’m a junior Psychology major and am also pursuing a minor in German.

    A selfie of Ella with a rainbow Pride flag in the background.
    When did you come out as LGBTQ+, and why then?

    Unfortunately, the first part of my coming out journey was being outed. I got outed my sophomore year of high school to my field hockey team, my coaches, and the entire athletic wing. I had a lot of different friend groups and so it was kinda divided. My friends in the theater wing didn’t find out until I chose to come out my junior year.

    The first time I chose to come out I felt like it was almost a form of activism. I was in my high school psychology class and I heard really harmful and derogatory words being thrown around and so I turned around to the group of guys saying those harmful things and I said, ‘Well, what’s wrong with being gay,’ which immediately shocked everyone into silence. He tried to defend it and be like ‘Well Daniella, what would you do if a girl came up and tried to kiss you, wouldn’t you think it’s weird,’ and despite not being out to anyone in the school except that one athletic section, I said, ‘I’d kiss her right back’ and then he was like ‘Oh so you’re a dyke’ to which I said yes.

    It was a very uncomfortable experience and it was extremely embarrassing in the moment, but it’s something I look back on with pride because I wanted to make a statement. I didn’t like how no one was saying anything, especially the teacher because I knew he was hearing what was happening. After that class I had a really long and meaningful talk with my high school choir director and he said something that has stuck with me since. He said, ‘Empower yourself and live in your light,’ and that’s something I still live by today. 

    ​Has being LGBTQ impacted or influenced your education?

    Being gay, one of the criteria I looked at when choosing a college was how accepting of LGBTQ students they were and the resources they have for our community. When I saw that Rowan has various LGBTQ+ clubs and the SJICR center, it made me feel very at-home and comfortable, and also I’ve always been someone who loves activism and social justice work, so finding Prism felt like a perfect fit. It felt like a great balance between being a social group for LGBTQ members to meet each other as well as pursuing activist work.

    I also want to be a trauma therapist, and part of my mission is to advocate and support LGBTQ+ individuals because unfortunately, people in the LGBTQ+ community are more likely to face trauma. 

    ​​Has LGBTQ culture and acceptance changed throughout your time at Rowan?

    In my experience, I’ve always felt that Rowan has been a very accepting place. I’ve loved to see Prism grow over the years. When I first started it was a small, tight-knit group and now we’re still a family but it’s amazing each year to see more and more people join the family and it makes my heart so happy.

    How has attending Rowan helped you in finding an inclusive community?

    I was lucky enough to find Prism early on and because of that, I met some of my closest friends. I found people who understood and related to experiences I’ve had. There’s a bond that comes from facing similar oppressive situations. While extremely unfortunate, we all understand what it’s like to be rejected for who we are, and have faced discrimination in one form or another. I’m so lucky to have found Prism and all of the amazing people in the club.

    Were there any faculty that you particularly enjoyed, inspired you and/or made you feel you had a safe space?

    I initially met JoAnna Murphy by accident, but ever since she has been the person I go to for everything. JoAnna exudes traits that the rest of this world needs to adopt. I truly admire her compassion, authenticity, and dedication to create change in the world. She is a woman and activist I strive to emulate. I feel so lucky to know her and have her as a mentor.  JoAnna has undoubtedly affected my experience at Rowan in an extremely positive way.

    Is there anything you would want to see changed at Rowan in regards to LGBTQ+ life?​

    I’ve heard many painful stories that my friends have shared about their professors aren’t using the right pronouns or the right name. I feel that that is completely unacceptable and there is no reason why professors or anyone for that matter can’t respect someone’s identity. In the future I would hope to see change implemented that holds all professional staff to provide a safe and welcoming environment for all of their students.

    Anything else you want to discuss?

    The journey of figuring out your identity can be extremely terrifying and it can feel isolating, but I want people to know that they’re not alone in any of it and that they have a community. They’re exactly valid and worthy for who they are and if anyone ever needs support or a safe person to talk to, just know that I’m an email away.

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    Senior Reflects: 4+1 Student Mia Fondacaro

    Mia stands in front of Bunce Hall.

    Mia Fondacaro recently graduated with a degree in Biological Sciences through the Combined Advanced Degree 4+1 program (CADP) along with minors in Sustainable Studies and Psychology. She is now working toward her master’s degree in STEM education. She reflects on her time at Rowan and offers some advice to incoming students.

    Could you please share your favorite moment with a faculty member or a favorite experience in one of your classes?

    Not sure if this counts but I had this one professor who was super connected with her students. If you missed a class but did not inform you, she would check in on you to make sure you’re ok. She was/is a great professor, and her class was always really fun.

    Mia smiles on the steps of Bunce Hall.

    Could you please share your favorite social memory?

    My favorite moment as a student has to be my junior year Homecoming. This is where I really went out of my comfort zone and met a lot of new people.

    What are your career aspirations?

    Finish my +1 year, work in a high-need school, get my doctorate, work in higher ed.

    Mia stands in front of a white spring flowering shrub on campus.

    How did the people or programs at Rowan help to support you with your professional growth or career aspirations?

    My program is unique. For your three years as an undergrad you are only taking classes for your subject matter (for me it is biology) then in your fourth and +1 year you are taking graduate courses for education. With this set up I feel like it makes getting certified being a teacher easy because I do not have to double major in my subject matter and then education, here it is a program that is already set up.

    Also with this accelerated program, yes I graduate a year later than my peers, but I graduate with a MA, which will have me entering the job market with higher income. To employers I think I will look like a valuable employee based on this program and my education from Rowan.

    Who is your favorite professor? What class did you take them for? And why is this person your favorite?

    Dr. Courtney Richmond, Intro to Marine Biology, connected with her students, really knew how to teach, and was well educated in the subject.

    Mia stands inside a gazebo on campus.

    What advice would you give to incoming freshmen or transfers about making the most out of their college experience?

    With me being a senior and having Covid take away my last year at Rowan, I’m thinking back to all the amazing memories I had at Rowan and wish I could have been able to make more this year with my friends and professors.

    To the incoming students at Rowan, please make the most out of your time here. Join clubs, go to events, live in a resident hall, eat on campus, sit in the student center pit, sunbathe at Bunce Green, go to the REC center. Be an active student on campus because you never know when it is all going to be taken away. What seems like a normal day on campus might end up being your last, so appreciate every moment here.

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, music industry graduate

    Photos by:
    Brian Seay, junior sports communication and media major

    #PROFPRIDE: Leah Boyle, RA for the LGBTQIA+ Learning Community

    Leah smiles in front of Bunce Hall while wearing a gray Rowan shirt and glasses.

    Today we speak with Leah Boyle, who graduated this May with a degree in Psychology. Leah comes from Haddonfield, NJ in Camden County and is a first-generation college student. She has been an on-campus resident all four years and worked as an RA (Resident Assistant) for the LGBTQIA+ Learning Community in Holly Pointe for the last two years.

    What has it been like being an RA?

    It’s been so good. I love everything about it. I’ve gotten so many opportunities through it. I am the RA for the LGBTQIA+ Learning Community. I make programs and oversee all of our students as they transition into Rowan. 

    Is there a moment that stands out to you as particularly meaningful being the RA of this pod? 

    Making programs [focused] on helping people introduce themselves and finding footing in a completely safe space for the first time has been the most impactful to me. Just having people refer friends to me if they have questions. Knowing that I myself am a resource has been my favorite thing about it. 

    Do you get a lot of first years? 

    Yes, it’s only first-years. I’m so happy I was able to do it. It’s been the happiest job I’ve had. It’s been so positive and a great environment.

    Can you tell me more about the programming that you’ve offered? 

    Because of Covid, it’s a little bit different. This semester I taught American Sign Language every month on Zoom. Last year I did Coming Out parties and LGBTQIA+ History Trivia Nights (showing the names and faces of people who are really important to our history). We have certain events for people who were celebrating their one-year anniversary since transitioning. It was so great, we had so much fun.

    It’s a little different with Covid. I had a Diversity Movie Club, where everyone would watch the movie on their own time and then we would get together later on and discuss whether it was reflective of our experiences. It’s more flexible, but last year I had a lot more [spontaneous yet purposeful] events.

    Leah puts a hand on her hip while standing under the Rowan arch.

    What feedback have you gotten from residents in comparing this community to where they originally come from? 

    I’ve had people tell me that this is the first time that they have had people refer to them by the name that they always wanted to be referred to by. [I’ve been told], “You’re the first person to ask me what my pronouns are and if I’m comfortable” or “I was nervous about my roommate but because I’m part of the LGBTQIA+ Learning Community, we’ve had the same experiences and I feel validated.” It’s so important that we have this space for people to meet other people. They all go off and join clubs together and lead together through Rowan. Having people show up to events that don’t even live in my pod and knowing more people around campus is so great. This has been great too. If people are happy within the community, it will continue to grow and grow. 

    When you talk about your job with people who are not directly part of the campus community, such as parents or relatives, do they embrace it or do you find yourself having to explain its importance? 

    One of my favorite things about coming to college has been that everyone comes from a different understanding of the community. It’s a bit confusing for people who are older than me or don’t really understand [why] I work specifically with this community. [It] also means that sometimes my job is more difficult than the people who live in neighboring pods because it comes with more difficult conversations. Sometimes I have to explain that, “Yeah, I have fun programs but sometimes it can be really intense.” 

    It’s a bit different from a typical resident assistant but a lot of times my friends would always want to show up to these events, meet people, and get people involved. I think it’s important to talk about it and learning communities at Rowan are so important. They’re really, really successful. I hope that the more we talk about it, maybe we could have learning communities in one or two other buildings. I like to spread the good word and let people know it’s a really great space.

    Leah and Kevin stand under the arch together.

    Have you ever encountered any hate towards you as being the RA or towards people who live in your pod?

    I think with having a diverse community living in a space, people can make the decision to come through and be judgmental or defacing property. In those situations, we have a lot of things in place to make sure that students are feeling supported. It’s not very common. I’ve been in this position for two years and very few times have I had to sit down with someone and say “Let’s talk about why you’ve done this thing.” 

    It doesn’t really happen that often. A lot of the time we get people who didn’t sign up for it but they’re really just happy at the end of the experience because they were able to learn. I’ve had a lot of people grow and learn more. It helps not only our community but the people around us. Yes, we’ve had situations where people have not been accepting, but Rowan has a very strict policy for any of that behavior. It’s always been taken care of. 

    For people coming into the university, do they have to share who they are to be able to qualify for this pod in terms of identifiers? 

    We don’t want anyone to feel like they have to out themselves to their family or friends when they’re coming to Rowan. So, what they can do is when they sign up for housing there will be boxes of all of our learning communities. You can select that you want to be with first-gen people or social justice people. Then you can have information sent to your personal email about the LGBTQIA+ community and find out if you were able to be placed. 

    I don’t get a list of [how] people identify. You can join if you’d like to and it’s not shared with a lot of different people. So I go into my job [thinking] that maybe this person signed up or maybe they didn’t. It’s more of an educational experience. A lot of people will come in letting me know that they’re so excited and share their past experiences. This year is different because we have different numbers than usual. I have people who don’t identify as LGBTQIA+. They have the complete same housing experience as everybody else. They just get more resources. It’s a win-win.

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    Story by: 
    Marian Suganob, public relations and advertising graduate

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major

    My Favorite Class: Gender, Sexuality, and Literature

    Field of flowers near Wilson hall.

    Today we feature recent graduate Amanda Carlin. Amanda earned her degree in English with a minor in Psychology and is from Bridgewater, NJ (Somerset County) where she transferred from Raritan Valley Community College. Amanda’s favorite class is Gender, Sexuality, and Literature in the English department, which was taught by Dr. Yvonne Hammond. Tell us a […]

    TRANSFERmation Tuesday: Psychology Major Joshua Olumakin Shares Insight On His Major

    Joshua poses outside of Bunce Hall.

    Joshua Olumakin, senior Psychology major and transfer student from Rowan College of South Jersey, talks with us about his experience in his major here at Rowan.

    Joshua holds his camera on Bunce Green.

    Joshua became interested in psychology after watching and listening to his mother’s online psychology courses she took in pursuing her master’s degree.

    Along with studying psychology, Joshua is a photographer; he uses what he knows from his courses to enhance his photos.

    “I want to pursue photography more after graduation. It’s one of my passions, and my major supports that by understanding others and myself as I grow,” he says.

    Joshua realized he was in the right major from talking with other people about psychology. What excites him most about psychology is the people. “I really enjoy interacting with people, it excites me and it’s what gets me more interested in this major,” he adds.

    Joshua sits on the steps of Bunce Hall.

    When asked to share one cool thing about his major, Joshua says, “Reading people. You tend to pick up on habits of people and how they are. It’s amazing the way you expect things to be and then see them exceed your expectations. It’s strange.” 

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    Story by:
    Caitlyn Dickinson, senior public relations and advertising major

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Meet Transfer Profs: 3+1 Psychology Student and Mother Victoria Hable

    Victoria sits with her son, Rowen.

    Today we speak to Victoria Hable, a first-generation college student and mom from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Victoria transferred from Harrisburg Area Community College to Rowan College at Burlington College. She will transfer to Rowan University in the fall as part of the 3+1 program. Victoria is majoring in Psychology and will graduate next spring.  

    Victoria sits on stones in front of greenery on Rowan Boulevard.

    Can you tell me a little about the 3+1 program that you’re currently enrolled in?

    I’m in the 3+1 program for Psychology. The 3+1 program is going to Rowan College at Burlington County (RCBC) for three years and transferring to Rowan and finishing a bachelor’s degree there for one year. I was a Music Business major at Harrisburg Area Community College. When I transferred to RCBC, I changed my major to Psychology. I had a lot of credits from the Music Business program that my 3+1 advisor Diana helped me work in as some extra electives so it wouldn’t delay my graduation date. From there, I created a plan to complete my last two years of my bachelor’s degree at RCBC and Rowan.

    How did you hear about Rowan and what made you want to come here? 

    I moved to the area two years ago for a change of scenery. I was able to live with family and babysit for them. I started at RCBC in 2018 to finish up community college, and I found out about the 3+1 program while I was there. I started the program when I was a year into my time at RCBC, and that is how I found out about Rowan.

    Victoria sits and hugs her son on Rowan Boulevard.

    What is it like to balance being a mother with being a student?

    It’s difficult. It’s definitely a lot. My son was born with Down Syndrome, so he has a lot of therapies and appointments. Balancing his appointments, my appointments and schoolwork is a lot. I’m not working, so it gives me a little more leeway in my schedule, but my job right now is to take care of him and finish school.

    How has Rowan supported you in being a mother and a student?

    It was two weeks into the spring semester, last January when I went to Diana, my advisor. I told her I had just found out I was four months pregnant, and I didn’t know what to do with my 3+1 plan. She helped me rearrange my plan to accommodate my being out for six weeks. I was out over the summer, so it only put me behind by two classes. It did not move my graduation date back at all. Instead of encouraging me to take a semester off because I found out I was pregnant, my advisor encouraged me to keep going. Diana was very dedicated to helping me figure out a new plan and stay in college like I wanted. The professors I have had so far are also willing to work with me.

    Victoria and Rowen sit on the grass in the Glassboro Town Square.

    How does your son motivate you to continue to pursue your career?

    I had some prenatal testing that was done about five months into my pregnancy, but I didn’t know until my son was actually born that he was 100% going to have Down Syndrome. Last May, I saw that the first student with Down Syndrome graduated from Rowan University last year. That was really cool for me to see, and that gave me more motivation to keep pushing to pursue my career and more motivation that my son might be able to go to college. Seeing that student graduate is also the reason why I decided to name my son Rowen. Rowen is in therapy twice a week, we’re working with him constantly. Seeing his resilience to everything and how he adapts to his environment is a big motivator for me, especially me being a psychology major. Watching him grow and learn new things is so fun, and it just makes me want to learn more about him and more about neuro-psychology.

    Do you have any advice for any current or incoming Rowan students that are also moms?

    Since COVID has happened, I have met online classmates who are moms as well. But as for advice, if you have a support system, take advantage of it. The school is 100% percent behind you to help. But I think the biggest thing is just to stick with it. Even if it gets a little heavy sometimes.

    What are your goals after you graduate?

    When I switched my major to Psychology originally, I wanted to pursue my master’s in Psychology. I wanted to apply for the FBI and work in forensics. But since I’m a Mom now, I had to change my path a bit. Now, I eventually want to get into trauma psychology and maybe criminal justice reform.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Meet Transfer Profs: Psychology Major Rosetta Briscoe

    An outdoor shot of Rosetta smiling and wearing reflective sunglasses.

    Meet incoming transfer Prof Rosetta Briscoe. Rosetta is a Psychology major from Pemberton, NJ who transferred from Rowan College of Burlington County. She shares how she chose Rowan University and what she’s looking forward to!

    Rosetta posing for a photo in a hot pink sun dress and reflective sunglasses.

    Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward at Rowan University?

    I’m looking forward to everything the school has to offer. I’m excited for the academic and personal growth that is to come.

    What is one hobby, activity, sport or club that you’re involved in that you’d like to continue at Rowan?

    I’m not active in any clubs, but I do have a hobby of jewelry making and singing. I would love to be a part of any club that inspires me to be creative and help individuals.

    Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself at Rowan? Grow a new skill? Try a new interest? Starting a new activity, sport or club?

    I would like to explore my options and join clubs, be active, and perhaps try a new skill. I love learning something new and being able to apply the knowledge toward my degree.

    What majors are you considering and why?

    Psychology so I can help counsel, and perhaps business, so that I can have my own practice.

    Rosetta wearing a black sequined mask.

    Did you tour Rowan or attend any virtual events? If so, which ones, and what did you think?

    I attended a virtual event for Psychology, it was informative and wonderful. I would recommend it to students.

    Do you have advice for other transfers who haven’t committed to a school yet?

    Do your research, then see which schools are the best fit for you. Think about the financial requirements, your academics, and what would be best for you.

    Where are you going to live next year?

    Commute from home.

    What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked?

    I like that so far I have experienced people working together as a team to make sure students are able to succeed.

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photos courtesy of:
    Rosetta Briscoe

    Sports and Mental Health

    McCarly sits on a bench outdoors on campus.

    Junior Psychology major McCarly Thompson shares advice on how taking up exercise or participating in sports improves more than just our physical well-being.

    It is safe to say that the watching and/or playing of sports has been one of the world’s greatest pastimes for centuries. From childhood, through the stages of adulthood, leading up to old age, humans all over the country participate in sports-related activities throughout their daily life.

    McCarly sitting on a bench next to his skateboard.

    According to the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine, “The Royal College of Psychiatrists recognize exercise prescription as a treatment modality for a wide range of mental health conditions.” That’s right: Not only can exercising and participating in sports benefit us on the physical level, but also the mental level as well! 

    Participating in exercise and sports on a team-based or competitive level has many benefits to our mental health in ways we may not even imagine. By helping us form social connections with others, sports can prevent and decrease the chances of depression and help us create strong relationships with people of similar interest as us. Participating in these activities also do justice on the personal level by increasing motivation and self-esteem via selective hormones in the body. Physical activity is also good for children in helping them make friendships, learn how to problem solve, and work their way through a task to reach an end goal.

    Clinicians have recently been promoting physical activity as a substitution for many other intervention services. Instead of writing up a prescription or putting someone in an institution, physical therapists have seen positive results in just advising several hours of physical activity a week to their patients. Ironically, it is important to note that many professional athletes do not seek mental health assistance due to the stigma behind it. The stereotype also follows that “big, strong men” don’t need to talk to anyone about their problems or feelings, when in fact this is not the case.

    Therapeutic service has actually been shown to increase performance in athletes, proving a strong correlation between sport and mental health. I believe that if we as a people raise awareness of the benefits of sports/physical activity, we would see the rise of a healthier generation on the physical and mental side, and also more elite athletes, able to reach their full potential on the field.

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    Story by:
    McCarly Thompson, junior, psychology major

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Meet Transfer Profs: Psychology Major Sara Brooks

    Outdoor photo of Sara smiling in a pumpkin patch.

    Meet incoming transfer Prof Sara Brooks. Sara is a Psychology major originally from Orlando, Florida who transferred from Rowan College of Burlington County. She shares why she chose Rowan and what she’s looking forward to!

    A selfie of Sara wearing a brown hat.

    Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward at Rowan University?

    I am looking forward to completing my bachelor’s degree in Psychology at a school that has progressive outlook on mental health and mindfulness.

    If you are from out of state, why did you choose a university not in your home state? Why Rowan?

    I grew up in Florida, and when I moved to New Jersey after getting married, I was lucky enough to find RCBC and enroll in their 3+1 program, which has given me the opportunity to transfer into Rowan University for my senior year and complete my bachelor’s degree in Psychology.

    What is one hobby, activity, sport or club that you’re involved in that you’d like to continue at Rowan?

    One [activity] that I look forward to becoming a part of is Rowan Thrive, especially in their Emotional Well-Being program. Stress and anxiety is something that all students face, and having resources that can help in learning how to navigate these emotions is important for everyone to discover their best self.

    Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself at Rowan? Grow a new skill? Try a new interest? Starting a new activity, sport or club?

    I am really looking forward to exploring more in Student Services and learning how I can be of service to more transfer students like myself who are coming into a new university and the opportunities that are available.

    Sara laughing and sitting in a pumpkin patch.

    What majors are you considering and why?

    I am a senior psychology major due to my natural interest in learning about why people are the way that they are. I currently work as a Behavioral Health Technician at an alcohol and drug treatment center working toward completing a certification as a Certified Alcohol Drug Counselor. Being able to complete my bachelor’s degree at Rowan and continue on to a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology is my goal, where I will focus more on dual diagnosis aspect of addiction.

    Did you tour Rowan or attend any virtual events? If so, which ones, and what did you think?

    Due to COVID being very present in my time of transferring to a university, I have only been able to attend virtual events and I have really enjoyed them. Being able to schedule Zoom advising sessions and talk with an advisor one-on-one has been so helpful in planning my future goals.

    Do you have advice for other transfers who haven’t committed to a school yet?

    Not to focus too much on where you want to transfer schools to but why. Look into schools that offer programs that you could see yourself being a part of after graduation and that have programs that you could see yourself being a part of.

    Where are you going to live next year?

    Commute from home.

    What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked?

    I really liked that they offer so many courses in Psychology that focus on research and the study of behavior, especially mindfulness, and that they offer a Philosophy track as well.

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photos courtesy of
    Sara Brooks

    Meet Transfer Profs: Human Services & Psychology Major NyEsha Cintron

    An outdoor photo of a branded chair on campus.
    A selfie of NyEsha in a botanical garden.

    Meet incoming transfer student NyEsha Cintron. NyEsha is a first-generation Human Services and Psychology major from Maple Shade, NJ (Burlington County) who transferred from Rowan College of Burlington County. She shares how she ended up at Rowan and what she’s looking forward to!

    Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward at Rowan University?

    I am looking forward to meeting new people, the ability to foster lasting relationships and grow in experience with my area of study. I am excited to see how school will impact my life as well as how I will impact the lives of others.

    What is one hobby, activity, sport or club that you’re involved in that you’d like to continue at Rowan?

    I’d like to get involved in the Human Services Club or a language club.

    Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself at Rowan? Grow a new skill? Try a new interest? Starting a new activity, sport or club?

    I will be taking a Spanish class, and I’d like to see my knowledge increase in this language to speak it fluently.

    What majors are you considering and why?

    I am a Human Services and Psychology major through and through. I love learning how to better understand people in efforts to better serve them. These majors are very organic to how I am wired, and I feel that I can be my best by furthering my education in these areas of studies.

    Did you tour Rowan or attend any virtual events? If so, which ones, and what did you think?

    I haven’t had the time to do so, but am awaiting orientation for transfer students, can’t wait!

    Do you have advice for other transfers who haven’t committed to a school yet?

    Do it and get started!

    Where are you going to live next year?

    Commute from home.

    What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked?

    I like that Rowan participated with community colleges to ensure continuity of learning to a accredited university.

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Surviving a Breakup: Taking One’s Power Back to Change Life Forever

    Melinda sits on a bench on campus.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    Melinda smiles, sits on a bench on campus.

    The minutes, hours and days after the demise of a relationship can be some of the most profoundly painful moments experienced by humans. In today’s fast-paced, social media-driven world, romantic relationships have become more difficult to navigate than ever. Add to that the implications of social distancing amid a global pandemic and breakups seem almost inevitable — and they can be, but, they don’t have to hurt.

    Breakups usher in uncomfortable feelings, self-criticism, emotionality and heartbreak — yet, these moments of adversity are powerful agents for growth and change: “…An ideal coping strategy should encourage those who have experienced a romantic relationship’s end to purposefully focus on the positive aspects of their experience while simultaneously minimizing negative emotions” (Seligman, et al 1). Breakups are opportunities that teach incredible life lessons and help cultivate personal power in a manner that can expand our perspectives which, in turn, can create the best version of ourselves.

    Still reeling after experiencing a breakup? First, assess any and all feelings relating to the relationship and ensuing breakup. Honor these emotions by grieving as it feels natural, and realize any residual emotions are normal and healthy as the acceptance of such emotion can prove to be a critically important part of the healing process, particularly, as one re-establishes their own independence.

    At this time, do not be afraid to reach out to family, friends or even a counselor to further process these feelings. It is paramount to accept all positive support, love and encouragement as it can be soothing, even transformative, in tough times. In addition, The Wellness Center offers counseling and psychological services for students which can assist in unpacking these feelings. To schedule an appointment call (856) 256-4333 Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    Melinda sits inside an academic building on campus.

    Next, prioritize the needs of the self-conscious. Choose to step up self-care: get back into the gym, fearlessly contemplate switching up personal style with a new haircut or outfit, consider getting a massage or look into planning a day or weekend trip away with friends or family as breakups are the perfect time to “break free” and retreat to self in a comforting and empowering way. Further, don’t be afraid to constructively channel focus elsewhere, perhaps by re-engaging academic goals, giving back through acts of service such as by volunteering, discovering a new hobby or activity to partake in — cultivate experiences that give a sense of fulfillment as keeping oneself engaged in other aspects of life can be restorative. Overall, the key to healing and expanding upon oneself post-breakup is by adopting healthy behaviors that assist in facilitating this new life change, while also helping to promote dynamic growth and personal power.

    Lastly, after taking adequate time to grieve, process and heal, don’t be afraid to get back out there — but only when ready and not a moment sooner. Above all, acknowledge that every individual person is unique when it comes to grieving and healing post-relationship. One’s journey may not be similar or reflective of another’s, and that is perfectly fine. Upon determining one is ready to open their heart again to love, accept that you are worthy of loving (and expressing love), proceed forward thoughtfully, at a speed that is comfortable. Initially, start by getting to know new people and growing new friendship connections — taking the time to enjoy the company of others can truly restore the confidence and strength required to reignite ones’ romantic life. 

    References: 

    Breakups aren’t all bad: Coping strategies to promote positive outcomes. http://www.apa.org/research/action/romantic relationships

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    Story by: 
    Melinda Steward-Cobbs, senior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Jabreeah Holmes, senior radio/TV/film major 

     



    TRANSFERmation Tuesday: Psychology Major, HR Management Minor John Tully

    John stands outside Bunce Hall.

    Today, we speak to Psychology major and Human Resources Management minor John Tully. John, from Ramsey, NJ (Bergen County), is a transfer student from Bergen Community College. 

    John standing against the door of Bunce while wearing sunglasses and a Rowan Psychology sweatshirt.

    What are your professional goals? And how is Rowan helping to support you in those goals?

    I am going to Georgetown in the fall for a master’s in Human Resource Management. After that, I hope to work in global HR management. Rowan has Psychology majors take a professions and practice class, that is where I learned about HR master’s programs and realized that is the direction I wanted to go in. Also, I was able to add a Human Resources Management minor to my program which helped me stand out from other applicants to the programs I applied to.

    How does your field impact the world? What impact would you like to have on the world in your field?

    HR is a crucial part of business and has major influences globally. HR has the ability to influence workplace happiness, motivation and profitability. HR also creates a safe and inclusive workplace while ensuring legal compliance. I would like to work in global HR management by designing human resource programs that are able to be applied across multiple cultures.

    What inspired you to choose your major?

    I was originally a bio/mathematics major and took an Intro to Psychology class to fulfill an elective requirement. I fell in love with psychology because of how diverse and interesting it is. It is an amazing field, which can be related to nearly any topic of interest. I knew after taking that class that I wanted to change my major and pursue a career in some way related to psychology.

    As a student from North Jersey, how did you become aware of Rowan University?

    I read about Rowan while researching colleges to transfer to. Rowan is a well-ranked school with classes related to Industrial Organizational Psychology. That made it stand out from other schools.

    How long is your trip/drive “home” to North Jersey?

    Around two hours.

    John standing on the steps of Bunce Hall while wearing a Rowan Psychology sweatshirt

    What are some of the benefits for you, living this distance from home?

    I am far enough away from home where things feel different, but still close enough where visiting friends and family is easy. I wanted a change of scenery but I didn’t want it to be too difficult to visit family.

    What are a few interesting or new things (to you) about Rowan’s South Jersey area that you would share with future out-of-state students?

    Mostly that South Jersey is very different than North Jersey. They’re like different states. South Jersey has a slower, more relaxed energy. Also, South Jersey is beautiful. It isn’t as crowded or urbanized as North Jersey. I always enjoy driving around and just taking in the open space and beautiful farmland.

    What off-campus, local fun places do you recommend students check out?

    There is so much good food here and it is so much cheaper to dine out than in North Jersey. There are also vineyards and a brewery near by. Rowan hosts a lot of events. Plus, Philadelphia is only about 20 minutes away so you have the ability to have city life if you want.

    Why did you choose to transfer to Rowan University?

    Rowan is a well-ranked university with an impressive psychology program taught by respected experts in their fields. Also, Rowan offers classes about Industrial Organizational Psychology, which is my area of interest.

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photography by:
    Jabreeah Holmes, senior radio/TV/film major

    We are #RowanPROUD to be included on Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society’s 2021 Transfer Honor Roll, which recognizes select nationwide colleges and universities that foster dynamic pathways for transfer students.

    Faculty PROFile: Dr. Lisa Abrams’ Innovative and Inclusive Efforts Break Down Barriers to Education

    Dr. Lisa Abrams sits in Robinson Hall.

    Dr. Lisa Abrams, assistant professor of Psychology, joined the Rowan faculty in 2014. Dr. Abrams recently earned the Excellence in Online Learning Award from Rowan Global Learning and Partnerships for her work.

    Dr. Lisa Abrams stands near a board for the Psychology department in Robinson Hall.

    Dr. Lisa Abrams went above and beyond to assist students in transitioning to a “new normal.” 

    Rowan Global’s Excellence in Online Learning Award primarily highlighted two of her courses, Statistics in Psychology and Research Methods in Psychology. Well before Covid-19, these courses were offered both in-person and online when created four years ago to accommodate the fully-online Psychology program here at Rowan. Dr. Abrams coordinated and developed these classes herself. 

    Course materials within these classes are free thanks to the Textbook Alternative Program (TAP) grant provided by the university. After receiving the grant for both courses, Dr. Abrams and a colleague searched for free resources for students. She felt confident they would find a proper alternative to save students money. 

    She found an open-source textbook that also had permissions to allow students to download the free textbook as a PDF. “For the rest of the course, there is nothing else [the students] have to pay for,” she says. Even the statistical software options, Jamovi and SPSS, used in the statistics course were free to the students. 

    “Early on, I recognized that the textbook prices were a bit like a barrier for my students,” Abrams says. “And it’d be a month into the class, because they couldn’t get it. So it definitely takes away that issue.”

    She also designed a one-credit course called Navigating Psychology for students who are new to the major. This course provides faculty with benchmarks to later measure students’ learning outcomes in the program. For the roughly 500 students who take the class each year, professors incorporate an introduction to the program into the course material, explaining who’s who within the psychology department, how students can meet with their college advisors, school policies, Rowan’s academic integrity policy and more. 

    Many students have attested the most important takeaway they received from the course was simply knowing essential, practical and timely information about psychology and the resources available to them at Rowan. The course serves as a roadmap to succeeding in Rowan’s psychology program and the university community in general. 

    Dr. Abrams strategically considered what it must be like for students to take on “the mental load of existing in a pandemic” as well as having to switch to a remote or hybrid college experience. In doing so, Dr. Abrams had to choose the most meaningful assignments to keep in the course. 

    Dr. Lisa Abrams sits inside Robinson Hall.

    Since creating her statistics course four years ago, Dr. Abrams redeveloped parts of it last spring. She made the quizzes as access gates to the next module to make sure students would not skip ahead and rather learn on schedule. The quizzes were designed more so as a practice test that would only accept a certain grade to move on, but can be taken as many times as needed to learn the material. Each quiz is different because the questions are chosen from a pool of questions that are given to different students and narrowed down. 

    She made this major change because she realized the importance of formative assessments. She aimed to make assignments that tested students’ knowledge without making them overly intimidating. Then the students will receive feedback immediately to quickly understand what they can improve on. This can guide the students to alter their study habits and remain on track with Dr. Abrams’ course goals. By doing multiple quizzes within a chapter, the students can find their level of understanding easily and at multiple points in the course. 

    Dr. Abrams’ favorite part of student engagement focuses less on the actual course material and more on developing positive relationships with the students. She enjoys being able to guide students in their learning process as well as making the teaching process easier — building trust between students and the professor can help students ask more questions. 

    She misses one-to-one interactions with students outside of class, which she still experiences now through Zoom or phone calls. Dr. Abrams continues to make time for students outside of class, which is invaluable for students, especially during the pandemic. 

    Her current research focuses on the topic of teaching, with multiple projects in the works at different stages. Dr. Abrams shares: “I tested if team-based learning is effective in teaching statistics in psychology. I have a project that is in big data collection right now about inclusive teaching practices and what students and faculty think about them and how much [the faculty] are using these types of strategies.”

    Dr. Lisa Abrams smiles outside on Rowan's campus.

    Dr. Abrams wishes people knew that psychology is a science. She explains that psychology uses the same scientific method used in other “hard sciences” to test all theories and in every field within psychology. She knows that many people misconceive this science because it deals with humans, making it appear “softer in a way.” She appreciates the fact that Rowan placed psychology under the College of Science and Mathematics (CSM), which did not match Dr. Abrams’ experiences at other colleges.

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    Story by: Marian Suganob, public relations major



    Leadership #PROFspective: Shivani Shah, Cofounder Of South Asian Students Association (SASA)

    Shivani sits in an academic building on campus.

    Today we feature Shivani Shah, a leader at Rowan University. Shivani is cofounder of South Asian Students Association (SASA) and currently serves as its copresident. Shivani is a junior, first-generation college student from Egg Harbor Township, NJ (Atlantic County). She majors in Biochemistry and has a minor in Psychology. This story is part of a […]

    My Favorite Class: Fahed Shakil’s Junior/Senior Engineering Clinic

    Exterior shot of bridge connecting Engineering and Rowan Halls.

    This story is a part of the “My Favorite Class” series.

    Today we feature Fahed Shakil, a senior Computing and Informatics, Psychology and Liberal Studies triple major. Fahed has concentrations in Cyber SecuritySociology and Applied Computing, and he earned CUGS in Management Information Systems and Industrial/Organizational Psychology. Fahed is a first-generation college student and commutes to Rowan from Gloucester City, NJ (Camden County). 

    What was the name of your favorite class at Rowan?

    My favorite class at Rowan is my Junior/Senior Engineering Clinic.

    What department was the class in?

    The class is in the Engineering Department

    Fahed poses in a suit with his cords.

    Who taught the class when you took it?

    Professors Karl Dyer and Mario Leone were my professors for my Junior/Senior Engineering Clinic.

    Tell us a little about what the class is.

    The class provided students the opportunity to gain and apply knowledge regarding human-centric product development utilizing industry-standard practices. Students were taught how to communicate with clients, understand their vision, needs, and wants, manage expectations, develop/maintain comprehensive documentation, and create a product with the main focus being to ensure client satisfaction.

    As a Computing and Informatics, Psychology and Liberal Studies triple major, how did you get into a Junior/Senior Engineering Clinic?

    I am not an engineering major, nor do I have any prior formal education in any field of engineering, nor would I satisfy the requirements needed to gain admission into Rowan’s engineering program, let alone be a part of a junior/senior level course. However, over the past four years, I have worked alongside a wide variety of engineering students and observed their world as a member of the Apprentice Engineering Team at Rowan, aka the A-Team, who Mr. Leone and Mr. Dyer manage together to efficiently support various initiatives and operations within the College of Engineering.

    I was trying to figure out what to do during my 2019 summer vacation and then I remembered that Mr. Leone and Mr. Dyer were going to be teaching a summer course about project management, human-centric design, and providing students the opportunity to work on projects pitched by clients with the similar expectations as students would experience in a job setting. This sparked my interest out of sheer curiosity of wanting to learn things outside my comfort zone and academic discipline.

    About 30 minutes before the start of the first day of the course, I went to Mr. Leone’s office, and luckily Mr. Dyer was present as well. At that moment I asked Mr. Leone and Mr. Dyer if I could sit in on the course throughout the summer and just observe the discussions that were going to take place and try to learn some of the content they were teaching. They allowed me to sit in on the course, and throughout the summer I had a wonderful experience.

    Materials in an ECE lab.

    Part of what made the experience that made it so memorable was that the ever-looming stress of getting a good grade for the class was non-existent as I was not being graded. The learning was purposeful, applicable to various aspects of life, and downright fun. I was exposed to various software I had never used before, engaged in eye-opening group discussions, and was able to observe the process engineers go through in making an idea into a reality while focusing on a human-centric design.

    Share with us a few details on why this class was interesting.

    This is a course that you cannot describe the experience you have in words that would fairly justify it. It is something unique, and the real value of the learning that takes place is really evident if you are a part of the A-Team. Based on the description of the class, it seems pretty simple, but there is more to the class than what meets the eye. This class was interesting because the professors stripped away the “status quo” style of teaching. Instead, they opted for a more free-flow style of self-directed learning, similar to the environment that students would be in when they enter the workforce, while still having support from the professors as needed.

    It was always a new and exciting day full of learning when you were in this class. One day we could be having an energetic and deep group discussion on a thought-provoking Ted Talk for a while. Another day we could be analyzing human behavior and conducting a group design review of different teams working on various projects.

    Is there anything else that made this class impactful?

    I’ve never been happy when I was forced to learn in a traditional academic setting as I didn’t like the structure of it. It was akin to squeezing a square cube into a round hole. If you push hard enough you may make it fit, but you’re gonna damage the cube in the process. Eventually, I just began to mildly accept the dismal reality that learning can’t be fun and this is how things just are.

    Fast forward to my experiences on The A-Team and the Jr/Sr clinic, that all changed.

    After reflecting on a story that exemplifies the idea of never settling for the status quo and the learning that took place within the Clinic, I decided to try something new in one of my classes after observing how students were able to learn through a hands-on experience in the classroom rather than just listening to lectures and doing assignments afterward.

    During the Fall 2019 semester, I had to take a class for my Computing & Informatics major, called Introduction to Web Development. I didn’t want to go back to the traditional style of learning in a college class after observing how the learning was done in the Clinic course, so I went to my professor’s, Mr. Darren Provine, office after class and asked him what content he had to teach us by the end of the semester. Professor Provine responded that he had to teach us, HTML, CSS, and Javascript or PHP. After explaining to him that I wanted to try to learn differently by doing a semester-long project in place of what he had already planned on doing, he supported my idea. 

    Materials in an ECE clinic lab.

    So from that day I engaged myself in a self-directed learning style and worked on my personal project. While everyone else in the class was following the standard routine for the course, I was curiously learning at my own pace. I still attended the professor’s class, but the entire time I’d be working on my project while the professor was teaching. At times when I would hit a roadblock in my project that I couldn’t find a solution to, I’d ask my peers on the A-Team and Professor Provine for advice. Additionally, from time to time, I’d check in with Professor Provine to keep him up to date regarding my progress. At the conclusion of the semester, I presented my project and Professor Provine gave me an “A” as my project had included all the requirements he asked for, as well as, extra concepts that had not been covered in the course. Little did I know, the extra concepts that I had learned and applied in the project were supposed to be taught and applied in my Senior Capstone course in the following semester. 

    Thanks to the A-Team and the clinic course, for one of the first times in my life, I was finally happy and excited to learn, as I had finally been exposed to an alternative style of learning which engaged my curiosity and made learning the central focus rather than getting good and meaningless test scores. Additionally, I was able to free up my time that would have otherwise been occupied by the course, learn at my own pace with no stress, and collaborate with my A-Team peers on additional projects that we were working on which enabled us to further our learning that semester.

    What makes the professors great?

    Professors Dyer & Leone are able to clearly break down and articulate concepts in various ways so nobody is left confused if one explanation didn’t work for everyone. They created a fun and engaging learning environment that made me excited to go back the following day, even though I wasn’t enrolled in the class or an engineer. The professors sparked curiosity in the students who were enrolled in the class and would provide resources and food for thought to help students find answers to their questions rather than just giving them an answer. They were always present and genuinely cared about the work and learning that was being accomplished, as well as, the wellbeing of their students.

    What are your professional goals?

    At the moment I don’t have any as I am still working on figuring them out. Although, a lifetime goal I have is to keep trying to put a smile on people’s faces.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies, and public relations double major

    Student photo provided by:
    Fahed Shakil, senior computing and informatics, psychology, and liberal studies triple major

    7 History Majors Share How Their Degree Supports Their Professional Goals

    Raymond standing outside.

    “This major supports my professional goal of being a teacher and continuing to give back to my community and my country. I am excited to see where my dual major takes me,” says junior Frank Gurcsik, a History and Education major from Gloucester County. “My major has been helping me to prepare and become an educator […]

    TRANSFERmation Tuesday: Future High School Teacher Gianna Venturini

    Stock photo of sunflowers.

    Meet Gianna Venturini, a Secondary Education and History major and Psychology minor. Gianna is a transfer student from Monmouth University but is originally from Rockaway, NJ (Morris County). She shares with us why she chose her major and why she chose Rowan!

    A selfie of Gianna holding a sunflower in a sunflower patch.

    What are your professional goals? And how is Rowan (your program, faculty, etc.) helping to support you in those goals?

    I am currently a senior in the College of Education studying to become a high school teacher. The COE has provided me with so many opportunities to be hands-on in real classrooms, and has continued to support me as I do my clinical practice this semester!

    How does your field impact the world? What impact would you like to have on the world in your field?

    I truly believe that becoming a teacher is one of the most important and impactful career fields that a person can get into. As teachers, we are responsible for educating and cultivating the next generation of thinkers and leaders. There is nothing I want more than to inspire and encourage my students to pursue their passions and be there to support them during such an important phase of their lives.

    What inspired you to choose your major?

    I always knew that I wanted to be a teacher; I was one of the few kids who always loved going to school and had a true love for learning. When I got to high school, I had a really difficult time struggling with mental health issues and I never felt like I had a true support system in a teacher or counselor at the school.

    Once I graduated, I knew that I wanted to become the teacher I had needed at such a difficult point in my life, and that is my number one priority as a future educator.

    As a student from North Jersey, how did you become aware of Rowan University?

    Many people from my high school had gone to Rowan or were planning to after graduation! I also have a family member who attended Rowan.

    How long is your trip/drive “home” to North Jersey?

    The trip home takes me about two hours — a very long, straight and boring drive up the NJ Turnpike!

    A portrait photo of Gianna wearing her high school cap and gown while holding a Rowan flag.

    What are some of the benefits for you, living this distance from home?

    I think that two hours is the perfect distance because it’s far enough away that I feel like I am living my own life, but close enough and still in NJ so that I can visit my friends and family for the weekend when I want to go home!

    What are a few interesting or new things (to you) about Rowan’s South Jersey area that you would share with future out-of-state students?

    Prior to coming to Rowan, I had never been to Philadelphia and I had no idea how close it was to campus! Back home, we always refer to New York as “the city” but when I transferred, I had to get used to people calling Philly “the city.” My best friend and I are actually planning on living in Philly after graduation!

    What off-campus, local fun places do you recommend students check out?

    As I said before, I love how close Rowan is to Philadelphia, and my friends and I often like to visit the city. As a history major, I love exploring the rich culture and historical significance that Philadelphia holds! There are also so many amazing restaurants and bars to check out, as well as fun shops and public park spaces.

    Why did you choose to transfer to Rowan University?

    The first time I visited and toured Rowan’s campus, I instantly felt at home and knew I wanted to spend the rest of my college career here. I had such a terrible freshman year, and I was desperately in need of a fresh start. That’s exactly the opportunity I saw at Rowan!

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    Story by: Bianca Torres, Senior music industry major

    Header photo courtesy of: Unsplash 

    We are #RowanPROUD to be included on Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society’s 2021 Transfer Honor Roll, which recognizes select nationwide colleges and universities that foster dynamic pathways for transfer students.

    Seniors Share: Women’s Club Lacrosse [VIDEO]

    View of the intramural field through the fence.

    Seniors Paige Ryan (white jersey), and Jeannie Corcione (grey shirt) share the positive impact that the Women’s Club Lacrosse team had on their college experience. Paige, captain of the team, is a double major in Biology and Psychology from Sparta, NJ (Sussex County). Jeannie is social chair of the team and is a Psychology major […]

    Meet #Rowan2025: Shawn Lorenzo Sanders Seeks to Stay Active on Campus

    Exterior shot of Business Hall front entrance.

    Meet #Rowan2025 student Shawn Lorenzo Sanders! Shawn is an incoming freshman, first-generation college student from Voorhees, NJ (Camden County). He shares what he’s thinking of pursuing and what he’s looking forward to at Rowan.

    Shawn wearing a blue, red, white and black sweat suit and matching shoes.

    Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward to in college?

    Getting a great education!

    What is one hobby, activity, sport, or club you were a part of in high school that you’d like to continue in college?

    Bodybuilding, getting into a Hispanic fraternity, and starting a business club.

    Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself in college? Grow a new skill? Try a new interest? Starting a new activity, sport or club?

    I would want to join a fraternity, expand my social circle, and join a health, fitness and nutrition club.

    What majors are you considering? 

    Business Management, Physical Therapy, Marketing or Psychology.

    Did you tour Rowan or attend any virtual events? If so, which ones, and what did you think?

    I visited Rowan and knew it was perfect for me.

    Do you have advice for other high school seniors who haven’t committed to a school yet?

    Go take a tour in person! It makes all the difference.

    Where are you going to live next year?

    I’ll commute from home.

    What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked?

    The modern buildings, the suburban campus, high-tech labs and the small community feel.

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    Story by: Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Meet #Rowan2025: Incoming Biological Science Major and Field Hockey Player Isabel Weiner

    The Rowan intramural field.

    Today we feature Isabel Weiner, an incoming Biological Science major from Metuchen, NJ (Middlesex County). Isabel plans to live on-campus and will be a part of the field hockey team next year. 

    Isabel poses outdoors.

    Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward to in college?

    I am enthusiastic about becoming a member of a community full of bright, young leaders. I look forward to surrounding myself with individuals who have the same interests and goals as me.

    Isabel poses while playing field hockey.

    What is one hobby, activity, sport, or club you were a part of in high school that you’d like to continue in college?

    During high school, I was a member of a four-time conference champion field hockey team and had the honor to be captain for the 2020 season. I will be a member of the Rowan University Field Hockey program, and I hope to win an NCAA championship. Go Profs!

    Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself in college?

    I am hoping I grow as an athlete and as a student. I intend to become a member of the Applied Behavior Analysis Club so I can further my understanding of a potential future career.

    Isabel poses outdoors wearing a Rowan sweatshirt.

    What majors are you considering and why?

    I am considering a major in biological science, as well as a minor in psychology and neuroscience. I have always had a deep interest in STEM and psychology. I hope to one day publish articles on the brain and its impact on behavior and cognitive functions.

    Did you tour Rowan or attend any virtual events?

    I toured the campus when I attended Rowan University for a field hockey prospect clinic. I was impressed by the coaches and the camaraderie of the players on the team. I attended the virtual, informative session about psychology and learned about the degree options.

    Do you have advice for other high school seniors who haven’t committed to a school yet?

    Choose a school where you can see yourself thriving and contributing to your college community proudly.

    What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked?

    I enjoyed the culture of the field hockey team. They have a competitive and hardworking nature, which makes Rowan Field Hockey such a highly-ranked program.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Photos submitted by:
    Isabel Weiner, incoming freshman biological science major

    How to Take a Break with No Break

    Angela stands outside Business Hall on campus.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    Across the United States, college students’ beloved week off, Spring Break, has been cancelled for many universities. This was a designated slot in the semester to take a break. Some vacationed in Miami, others headed to local East Coast shores and some ventured across the globe to enjoy a week of fun, but mostly, of time off. 

    Without the week off, students have a semester that goes straight through — something that is new to most students. Even during fall semesters, we have a Thanksgiving break, which allows allotted time to decompress. Taking time away from school, a break from studying and worrying about deadlines is a huge component in maintaining mental health, motivation and minimizing your risk of burnout. 

    Angela leans against a bridge outside on campus.

    Taking a break doesn’t look the same for each individual. There are many ways to take a break, and many ways to manage time to take a break. Some people benefit from taking short, quick breaks throughout the day. Youki Terada from the George Lucas Educational Foundation found that “[s]tudents are easily distracted, but regular, short breaks can help them focus, increase their productivity, and reduce their stress.” Others would benefit from designating one day a week to doing something enjoyable — or doing nothing at all (which is also very enjoyable).

    Another way to plan breaks is to set aside evenings to yourself and complete all work in the morning. Or, maybe one to two hours a day of self care is beneficial.

    While there are several ways to manage relaxation time, there are also endless possibilities in which someone can take a break. With what should’ve been Spring Break around the corner, individuals may be scrambling to manage time as well as celebrate this college-beloved “holiday.”

    Angela sits inside Business Hall.

    An alternative spring break could be volunteering through a program at Rowan — the Alternative, Alternative Spring Break. It’s also fun to gather friends and take a trip to the beach, masked up and socially distant. Maybe roommates decide to have a movie weekend. A quiet weekend with a Ben & Jerry’s Half Baked, pajamas and a movie marathon may be exactly what some may need.

    To plan ahead enjoying Spring Break, be sure to complete homework in ample time to minimize stress. 

    Enjoying time off is important, and a dire need of students. Take some time to kick back, relax and leave worries about those modules at the logout button on Canvas. 

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    Story by:
    Angela Colo, junior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photos by:
    Joe Gentempo, senior art major

    Meet #Rowan2025: Amy Fortuna-Moreira

    Meet #Rowan2025 student Amy Fortuna-Moreira! Amy is an incoming freshman from Camden, NJ (Camden County) deciding to pursue a degree in either Chemistry or Psychology. She shares what she’s looking forward to on campus and why she chose Rowan.

    Amy smiling and posing for a selfie wearing a tan sweater and jeans.

    Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward in college?

    I’m looking forward to the new environment and meeting new people.

    What is one hobby, activity, sport or club you were a part of in high school that you’d like to continue in college?

    I’d like to continue going to Anime Club and getting to meet others who also like it.

    Is there anything you’re hoping to discover about yourself in college? Grow a new skill? Try a new interest? Starting a new activity, sport or club?

    I can’t wait to discover more about different clubs and hopefully gain a new interest through it.

    What majors are you considering and why?

    I’m considering chemistry or psychology. I loved both of these subjects in high school, and for my career, both would be great to advance in.

    Do you have advice for other high school seniors who haven’t committed to a school yet?

    Don’t rush it, and take your time. Look through your options and choose whatever stand out or fits you best.

    Where are you going to live next year?

    I’m commuting from home.

    What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked?

    I love the environment and the atmosphere of it all. It feels like a big family and everyone just seems so sweet.

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    Story by: Bianca Torres, senior Music Industry major

    #PROFspective: Junior Biochemistry Major, Student-Athlete Caitlyn Cordell

    Catie poses, sitting on a bench.

    Today we speak to Caitlyn Cordell, a junior Biochemistry major with a Psychology minor from Middletown, Delaware. Caitlyn is a first-generation college student who lives off-campus. 

    Catie poses in front of a brick wall wearing a Rowan soccer shirt.

    What is a typical Rowan day for you?

    I typically start with breakfast, go to class anytime from 9:30-1:45, eat a snack between classes, I have soccer practice starting at 2, then I eat some dinner and do homework. After that, I will watch a movie or hang out with some friends if I am caught up on my work.

    Could you share with us one moment during your time at Rowan that made you feel inspired or confident that you’re in the right major for you?

    One time I felt inspired that my major was right for me was when I got accepted into a research program at Cooper Hospital. I felt like all my classes had prepared me well and I made the right decision.

    Catie poses by the Campbell Library wearing a Rowan soccer shirt.

    Could you tell us a little bit about your transition into Rowan as an incoming student?

    I was really excited to be living on campus for the first time, to make new friends, and study subjects I was interested in. I think my professors did a really great job of being accepting and creating a comfortable environment in their classrooms. This allowed me to connect with other students in the class easier and I made some of my best friends because of that welcoming feeling.

    What are your professional goals?

    I want to go to medical school and become a physician.

    Catie poses outside wearing a Rowan soccer shirt.

    How has Rowan helped to support you with your professional goals?

    The science department has prepared me for my medical school exam and given me an excellent foundation of knowledge. The Pre-Health Society at Rowan has been a very beneficial club, the meetings help keep me on track for success. They also host cool workshops on topics such as vital signs, suturing, or getting to view and touch different brains.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Photos by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Black STEM Majors Share Advice for Black High School Students Interested in STEM

    Ylanda sits outside campus near Campbell Library.

    Today, we’re highlighting Black STEM majors as they share some advice on where to start when looking into STEM.

    Ylanda wearing a Rowan shirt and posing outside the Campbell Library.

    “Attend as many events as you can to meet new people that has the same interests as you and to also carry out with your interests,” says Ylanda Souffrant, a sophomore, first-generation college student and Math Education major from Trenton, NJ (Mercer County)

    Josephine wearing a lab coat and posing in the Science building.

    “It’s alright if you know you’re interested in STEM, but you don’t know what you want to do with it in life. Carefully choose the school/program you join because that is how you will position yourself and expose yourself to experiences and individuals that will guide you along your journey,” says Josephine Babatunde, a senior Biochemistry major and transfer student from Union County College (Union County, NJ).

    Dévon sitting and posing for a photo while wearing a dotted dress shirt and blue dress pants.

    “One major key of advice I would give for high school STEM students is to not give up. I know this sounds a bit cliché, but you’re going to run into many obstacles and people who try to hold you down or stop your progress, but you can’t let nothing stand in your way. The road is going to be rough and tough but like my family always used to preach to me, ‘If someone already did it, you can too,'” says DéVon Malloy, a junior, first-generation college student and Biomedical Engineering major from Hillside, NJ (Union County)

    Briana sitting and posing on the fountain stature outside Campbell Library.

    “Hold your head up high! The courses may seem rigorous and tedious, but you are more than capable. You are just as competitive as anyone else around you; don’t give up! Ask for help if you need it, take advantage of programs that cater to your major whether it is directly or indirectly correlated with the unrepresented, be sure to make connections any chance you get, and try to get some some volunteer experience in the field if possible.” — Briana Davy, junior, first-generation college student and Biological Sciences major (planning on receiving a CUGS in Spanish), Honors Concentration, transfer from RCSJ Cumberland, Vineland, NJ (Cumberland County)

    Akil leaning against the bridge and smiling outside Engineering Hall.

    “Start early. Time flies really fast and you never know what the next day will bring you. Get involved in programs, especially offered by the schools you go to, because it not only looks fantastic on your resumé but also the skills and knowledge you acquire from it goes a long way. Get involved early too, don’t be afraid of clubs and participating, and don’t be afraid to reach out to people in college now and ask questions.” — Akil DeBruhl, junior Biological Sciences major with a minor in Psychology, South Orange, NJ (Essex County)

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    Story by: Bianca Torres, senior Music Industry major

    Photography by: Stephanie Batista, sophomore Music Industry major and Joe Gentempo, Senior Art major

    Thriving In My Faith As A College Student

    The word "faith" written using stones.

    Today we hear from Rowan students and how they are involved in their faith on campus. They are involved in clubs such as Catholic Campus Ministry, Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship, and Hillel.

    Amanda poses with a bouquet of flowers.

    Amanda McNally is a freshman Athletic Training major from Tabernacle, NJ (Burlington County). Amanda is involved with Catholic Campus Ministry. She says that “just going to the meetings alone, and the student masses every Saturday, I have had the opportunity to hear from speakers, such as religious sisters and a married couple, and talk with a bunch of other students who are my age and share the same beliefs as me. It is really nice to be able to talk about my faith with other people my age and go to mass with other people away from home. I have noticed in this first semester that all of the members are there by choice. In high school, people went to my youth group and their parents made them go, but it’s great to be with people who want to be there and follow their faith.”

    Morgan poses in front of a garage door.

    Morgan McRae a junior Music Therapy major from Forked River, NJ (Ocean County), is also involved with Catholic Campus Ministry. Morgan says that it was nice to connect and bond with people over something deeper than surface level. “I never really had Catholic friends before, I went to a public school, so that was a big change for me. I feel like I can talk about different aspects of my faith and feel accepted.” She also discusses the different kinds of activities and discussions they have. “Before March, we used to have different activities. When March came, everything moved online. Rebekah Hardy, our Director of Campus Ministry, and Father Rossi, the pastor at Saint Bridget’s University Parish, did a great job of picking topics that are just as impactful online as in person.”

    Carley Robinson poses in her apartment.

    Carley Robinson a junior Psychological Sciences major with a neuroscience minor from Marlton, NJ (Burlington County) is involved with Catholic Campus Ministry, as well as Chi Alpha. “Catholic Campus Ministry has meetings every week to discuss different topics in the Catholic faith. We learn about one sacrament, belief, or doctrine in the Catholic faith in each meeting. We usually have a retreat every semester for a weekend, as well. On the retreats, we have many more Catholic activities such as mass, adoration, listening to talks, and getting to know other Catholics in the Rowan community in a special way. There is a college student mass on Saturday night at 4:30 pm at Saint Bridget’s University Parish. There is a bible study every other Thursday as well. I also am involved with the Christian club Chi Alpha. They have bible studies, and praise and worship every week.” She says that over quarantine, she was able to take time and make sure her foundation was in God. “During 2020, I was able to have the perception of it being a challenge, rather than something to destroy your faith, and I think that helped me. As a Catholic, you want to have God as your foundation, so being alone and separated from people is a good opportunity to work on that and see where your priorities really are and see if your foundation really is on God.”

    Brianna poses near some trees and on a pathway.

    Brianna Broadwater is a freshman Psychology major from Bel Air, Maryland, and a new Catholic. She completed the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) over the summer at a church in her hometown, and now she loves being part of the Rowan Catholic community. “Catholic Campus Ministry has honestly helped me make the most friends and helps me get to do a lot of things, especially during the pandemic. We haven’t gotten to do as much, but there is still Newman Night every Wednesday, and we have group chats. We have a whole freshmen group chat dedicated to freshmen from the club, and we all talk and eat good food. We get to help each other with anything we are going through and tell each other stories and make each other laugh. It is amazing.” I have gotten to thrive more in my faith this year because I have been able to go to Newman every Wednesday, and I go to the bible studies on Thursdays sometimes. I also go to the student mass on Saturdays, and I have been able to cantor for that. I have been very involved in church, and I have been able to have more of a prayer life. I have started a prayer journal about things that are important to me, and goals. I have started getting more involved in my faith.”

    Steven poses against a white wall.

    Steven Douglass a sophomore Chemistry major from Cherry Hill, NJ (Camden County) is also involved in Catholic Campus Ministry. “Catholic Campus Ministry gives me a community of like-minded people and it helps to have a good friend group that has the same beliefs as you.”

    Alex poses outdoors on her deck.

    Alex Herschman is a junior Management and Marketing major from Marlboro, NJ (Monmouth County). She just finished her term as vice president of Hillel, and began serving as president. “I began going to Hillel as a freshman and loved it ever since attending my first event, which made me eager to join Hillel’s executive board. I started off as the organization’s social media chair, then served as the vice president and now president.” She says that Hillel gave her a sense of belonging at Rowan. “Hillel gave me that Jewish community and sense of belonging on campus. We are all super close, and I feel comfortable with them, and it is nice to have something in common with each other. If I am on campus and not at home, I can celebrate the Jewish holidays with the community at Hillel. During Passover, we do a seder, and for Yom Kippur, we were able to do an outside break fast event, which was very nice, because it was on a Monday and I was not able to go home. It was great to spend the holiday with my fellow Hillel members when I couldn’t go home and spend it with my family.” 

    Christa poses in front of some trees.

    Christa Ouellette a senior Civil and Environmental Engineering major from Delanco, NJ (Burlington County),  is also a part of the Catholic Campus Ministry. “Catholic Campus Ministry has opened up so many doors for me. One of the greatest things that Catholic Campus Ministry has done for me spiritually is the group discussions and retreats we do. These guided retreats we do one weekend a semester are just us and we get to step away from the world for a bit and reconnect spiritually. We also do different trips sometimes. In 2018 or 2019, we went to the border in Texas and we volunteered with the Humanitarian Respite Center, and we got to help refugees that were recently released by ICE. That was really awesome.”

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Header photo courtesy of:
    Pixabay

    First Year Voices: Commuter, PROFFAMILY Member Jada Jenkins

    Jada standing outside of Bunce Hall.

    Today we speak with freshman Jada Jenkins, a Psychology major and commuter from Blackwood, NJ (Camden County). She tells us about her experience so far at Rowan. Jada is part of PROFFAMILY, a newly-formed freshmen group focused on inclusion and fun. Why did you choose Rowan? Rowan was one of my top two schools and they […]

    TRANSFERmation Tuesday: Psychology Major Caitlin Morales

    Caitlin standing outside of the library.

    Today we speak to Psychology major Caitlin Morales, who also minors in Human Resources Management. Caitlin is from Chesterfield, NJ (Burlington County) and transferred from Kean University. She shares with us her experience in her major and why she enjoys being a student at Rowan. How would you tell a fellow student interested in your […]

    Kudos To Professors Who Made An Impact

    Exterior shot of the side of Campbell Library.

    We recently spoke to students who each picked a professor they’ve had at Rowan who really made an impact on them. Here, the students explain how these professors affected them and what made them truly enjoy their classes. Tiara Gbeintor, junior Psychology major Professor Lisa Abrams, Psychology: “She was a very understanding teacher. She made […]

    PROFFAMILY: An Inclusive & Welcoming Group Of First Years

    PROFFAMILY members stand amongst the trees during fall foliage.

    Story header photo, from left: Tara Long, Brandon Sagbo, Jada Johnson, Poku, Aaron Brown, Dianna Schreidl, Jayshalie Jennings Today we speak with PROFFAMILY. Freshman founder Poku and first members of the group share how it began and how it has helped them transition into being college students. Creator and visionary, freshman Samuel Poku (who prefers […]

    5 Juniors Share Why They Changed Their Majors

    These students recognized their majors weren’t the right fit and took the time and energy (which isn’t much) to make the switch. If you don’t absolutely love what you’re studying, it might be good idea to make a switch to improve your college experience!

    Selfie of Bria Riley.

    “I was exploring a couple different paths such as addiction counselor, teacher and community health educator, but I realized they weren’t for me. Then what really drove me to add world religions was just my own personal experiences with spirituality, and I realized that I really value critical thinking and multicultural competency … everyone having peace with one another and getting along.” – Bria Riley, junior Psychology major (previously Writing Arts) from Washington Township (Gloucester County)

    Outside headshot of Michaela Navarro.

    “I wanted a place where I could do music business and not have to deal with the recording and playing an instrument. My ex-boyfriend took me to see ‘Wicked’ and that was the deciding factor for me. I wanted to do theatre and I wanted to make amazing theatre like ‘Wicked.’ I just always really loved the technical aspect of everything. I do live sound, so I mix musicals here and I do lighting.” – Michaela Navarro, junior Musical Theatre-Design/Technical major (previously Music Industry) from Howell, NJ (Monmouth County)

    Jackie Carlton sits on a purple chair outside.

    “I was a Mechanical Engineering major up until the fall of my sophomore year. I wasn’t really enjoying the classes that were more specific to it, I was trying to go to the clubs to figure out more what to do. But all the career stuff wasn’t really stuff I wanted to do. I want to get as much diverse experience as I can, I’m not really sure what I specifically want to get into, but I kind of want to learn a little bit of each field.” – Jackie Charlton, junior Civil & Environmental Engineering major (previously Mechanical Engineering) from Boonton, NJ (Morris County)

    Shirley stands in front of a tree and a nearby academic building.

    “I changed a bunch of times. I came to Rowan as a Biochem major, then I switched to Psychology, then I was undecided for like two seconds, then I was Physiological Sciences, and I became an Anthropology major and I recently doubled majored in Modern Language & Linguistics. Spring semester [sophomore year] I had to take an Anthropology class and I was given Natives of South America with Dr. Maria Rosado, and she changed my perspective on everything. Coincidentally, the major just became a major that same semester, if I’m not mistaken. – Shirley Celi-Landeo, junior Anthropology / Modern Language & Linguistics dual major (previously Biochemistry) from Newark, NJ (Essex County)

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    Story by:
    Luke Garcia, junior music industry major

    Photos not submitted taken by: 
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major
    Quintin Stinney, sophomore Radio/TV/Film major

    Shop Local? Shop Rowan Grad

    Rowan Boulevard and the Glassblower statue.

    Shop Rowan Grad this winter! Today we feature Rowan alumni who have started their own businesses. Wider Awake Alumna Courtney Stevenson graduated from Rowan in 2008 with a B.A. in Printmaking & Illustration. She and her husband Justin, also a Rowan alum, own a printmaking company called Wider Awake. https://www.widerawake.com/ | Instagram @widerawakeprint “I learned […]

    Take Control

    Marco stands in a wooded section of campus.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    In a simplistic way, we are all conscious beings. It is what differentiates us from all other life forms and is the reason we can imagine ourselves in a situation before it becomes a reality.

    But what happens when our moral guide no longer exists, the voice in our head seizes to separate right from wrong and instead criticizes the very existence of everything.

    The authors at PsychAlive view this as the “critical inner voice” and explain it as “a well-integrated pattern of destructive thoughts toward ourselves and others.”

    Marco stands in a walking path along campus.

    The critical inner voice is often the result of a maladaptive childhood. It is when the child does not meet the adequate necessity of self-recognition, therefore the child’s self-concept begins to match a false perception of what important others think, for example, Mom and Dad. This often leads to the concoction of feelings experienced by the archetypal villain: arrogance, deceit and resentment. But instead of plotting the very destruction of the world, there is an alternative pathway that leads to the halt to the internal destruction within.

    According to PsychAlive: “In order to take power over this destructive thought process, you must first become conscious of what your inner voice is telling you so you can stop it from ruining your life. To identify this, it is helpful to pay attention to when you suddenly slip into a bad mood or become upset, often these negative shifts in emotion are a result of a critical inner voice.”

    Marco smiles while standing on campus.

    Understanding the difference between conscience and the critical inner voice is vital in gaining control over one’s actions, thoughts and behaviors, therefore acquiring the ability to stop and analyze the situation can mean the end to damaging unwanted thought processes. Take control.

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    Story by:
    Marco Imperiale, sophomore psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore public relations and communication studies major

    Reference Page 17th, L., 16th, W., 12th, P., 4th, W., 21st, L., 15th, S., . . . 23rd, S. (2018, April 02). The Critical Inner Voice Explained. Retrieved September 16, 2020, from https://www.psychalive.org/critical-inner-voice/

    Beyond the Classroom: Meet Africana Studies Club President Nafisat Olapade

    Nafisat Olapade sitting on a cement bench in front of a large brick building.

    Today we feature Nafisat Olapade, president of the Africana Studies Club. She’s a Biological Sciences and Psychology double major and a first-generation college student. Here, she tells us more about the club and her leadership role in this campus organization. 

    Nafisat Olapade poses on a black metal bench in front of some trees.

    Can you tell me about the Africana Studies Club?

    Africana Studies Club is here to promote a higher level of consciousness for students when it comes to whatever path they decide to choose after Rowan. It’s important to emphasize Africana Studies as a major or a minor. It’s important to battle racial disparities in its forefront in whatever career you decide to get into. 

    Nafisat Olapade poses in an orange shirt in front of bushes and a parking lot.

    Is the Africana Studies Club involved in any events?

    We have events that are planned, currently this year we plan on doing volunteering programs. We’re partnering with NJAC, which is the New Jersey Abolitionist Collective; they work with the communities that are less funded and have less opportunities. They are also really big on advocating for the rights of inmates. We plan on doing a volunteering outreach programs with them.

    What do you hope to get out of the Africana Studies Club for yourself?

    Africana Studies itself allows me to learn more about how I can use whatever position I gain in the future to help people in communities that need help. It allows me to be aware of the disparities and just the structural racism that is in a lot of different fields in the world and how I can do my part from where I stand. 

    Nafisat Olapade poses in an orange shirt in front of a rocky wall.

    Does the Africana Studies Club have a different meaning this year with the Black Lives Matter movement?

    I think right now we have a lot of people who care, and that’s something great to hold onto. I feel like this momentum is great for our club and it’s great for also gaining members. People need to translate their caring and social media activism into things that are tangible in real life. I think this momentum that we currently have could be used in the club and having people just gain awareness in what racism means in day-to-day life. 

    What is your favorite thing about the Africana Studies Club?

    I really like that I’m friends with my e-board members, some of them are my roommates actually. I like the passion behind a lot of the members in the club and I like that I get to leave something at Rowan before I move on. 

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    Story by:
    Luke Garcia, junior music industry major

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major 

    Today I am Grateful for…

    With the holiday season upon us, we spoke to Rowan students about what they are thankful and grateful for this year. This is what they had to say.

    Jenna Fischer, a senior Public Relations major, says she is thankful for her family who supports her in every phase of her life. She says that no matter what dream and goal she has, she knows they will always stand by her side.

    Jenna poses with her family.
    Jenna (center) and her family.

    Chase Shebey, a junior Marketing major, says that he is grateful for all the opportunities that Rowan University has given him.

    Chase poses on the intramural field with a rugby ball.

    Jessica Newell, a junior Communication Studies major, is grateful for her roommates who remind her that every accomplishment, no matter how small, is to be celebrated and that every problem can be somewhat improved by ordering pizza.

    Jessica poses on the side of 301 High Street building.

    Mya Calderon, a junior Journalism major, is grateful that she didn’t have to work on Thanksgiving again this year.

    Mya sits next to flowers in front of the student center.

    Jasmin Jones, a junior Law and Justice Studies and Sociology double major, is grateful for her loved ones and for all the opportunities she has been given. 

    Jasmin poses outside of the Rowan Boulevard Apartments.

    John McCleery, a sophomore Civil Engineering major, is thankful for his siblings and how close they have become during COVID.

    John poses in front of a waterfall wearing a Rowan shirt.

    Lianna Johnson, a sophomore Vocal Music Performance major, is thankful to have been able to live on campus so far this semester. She is grateful to see old friends, make some new ones and even have an in-person class!

    Lianna poses in front of Mimosa Hall.

    Erwin Lopez, a sophomore Health and Exercise Science major, says that he is thankful for his family and the support they give him, especially during these uncertain times. He is also thankful for all of his friends that give him moral support.

    Erwin poses in front of some trees.

    Nickvens Delva, a freshman Psychology major, is thankful for many things, but he is most thankful for both his family and his health. He says that the most important thing to him is his family, so the health of his family and him during these unusual times is truly the biggest blessing to him.

    Nickvens poses in front of Mimosa Hall.

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    Story and photos of Chase, Jessica, Mya, Jasmin, Lianna and Nickvens by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Photo of Erwin by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Photo of Jenna provided by:
    Jenna Fischer, senior public relations major

    Photo of John provided by:
    John McCleery, sophomore civil engineering major

    Header photo courtesy of:
    Unsplash

    5 Early Childhood Education Majors Share How Their Major Interests Them

    College of Education student Cheyenne holds a pennant on campus.

    Today, five Early Childhood Education majors tell us why their passion lies in teaching and why their major interests them!

    Jordyn posing for a picture in front of a scenic waterfall.

    “I’ve always wanted to major in special education. My cousin has Asperger’s Syndrome, a form of ASD. I began working in a special services school district and realized how much I loved doing what I do. Once I fully made my commitment, I transferred to Rowan.” – Jordyn Briner, senior, Early Childhood Education major, Psychology minor, transfer from RCBC, Burlington Twp., NJ (Burlington County)

    Cheyenne holding a Rowan flag outside on Rowan's campus.

    “I knew I wanted to be a teacher when I began working in a daycare center and felt like I was in the right place. It was then that I wanted to learn more about this field.” – Cheyenne Smith, senior, Early Childhood Education major with a Africana Studies and American Studies dual minor, transfer from Camden County College, Somerdale, NJ (Camden County)

    Alicia posing for a selfie.

    “I’ve always been interested in early childhood education!” – Alicia Bramble, junior, first-generation college student, Early Childhood Education major, transfer from Camden County College, Vineland, NJ (Cumberland County)

    Tyra sitting on a yellow bench on Rowans campus.

    “For my whole life, I have been surrounded by early childhood education from my mother. After babysitting and looking after my neighbors and friends, I fell in love with helping children learn.” – Tyra McCombs, sophomore, Early Childhood Education and Liberal Studies major, Swedesboro, NJ (Gloucester County)

    Grace posing for a photo outside Robinson Hall.

    “I have known I wanted to be a teacher since I was very little. I would always play ‘teacher’ in my basement and would write on the walls as if it was a classroom.” – Grace Badillo, senior, Early Childhood Education and Literacy Studies major, Orangeburg, NY (Rockland County)

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photos not submitted by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    RAINN and Sexual Assault Prevention

    McCarly sits on a bench on campus outside.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    McCarly sitting on a bench outside James Hall.

    Hey everyone, McCarly Thompson here from Healthy Campus Initiatives! According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), “Every 73 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted. And every 9 minutes, that victim is a child. Meanwhile, only 5 out of every 1,000 perpetrators will end up in prison” (RAINN, 2020).

    I’m sure I can speak for everyone reading this when I say these are very disturbing stats that definitely trigger a response for change.

    Fortunately for us, change has been on the way. Did you know that the rate of sexual assault and rape has decreased 63% since 1993? This trend is due to the increase of sexual assault awareness spreading across the nation. RAINN is the largest anti-sexual violence organization amongst these groups, partenering with over 1,000 local service providers nationwide.

    One of their main resources is the National Sexual Assault Hotline, where people can call in for a number of reasons. By either getting help from trained staff members, locating health centers that provide a number of health care services, or obtaining long term sexual assault support in their area, RAINN offers a number of free services to everyone. Get this: the National Assault Hotline has helped more than 3,000,000 who have suffered from sexual violence since its commencement in 1994!

    There are even other ways RAINN promotes sexual assault awareness/prevention aside from a victim reaching out. Even if you haven’t personally been a victim to sexual violence, you can call the hotline in order to find out ways you can get someone else the help they need. RAINN also promotes the idea of C.A.R.E., which stands for creating a distraction (from the victim), asking directly (to the perpetrator), referring to authority (against the perpetrator) and enlisting others (to help). These four scenarios are taken by a bystander and can effectively decrease the chances of a sexually violent act occurring, putting victims in the hands of safety. 

    The main message of spreading sexual awareness/prevention is standing up and speaking out. If you see something, say something. Most sexual assaults go unreported due to the fear of misbelief of retaliation; however, third-party bystanders are able to intervene either directly or completely anonymously. Putting an end to sexual violence may seem like a far-reaching goal, but if we all do our parts as actively-caring citizens, we can put a stop to this epidemic in significant ways. 

    Be safe and be smart, MC out.

    McCarly sitting on a bench next to his skateboard outside on campus.

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    Story by:
    McCarly Thompson, junior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    The following URL is a link to RAINN’s official website where you can find more information on sexual awareness/assault prevention: https://www.rainn.org/about-national-sexual-assault-telephone-hotline



    Unplug

    Angela stands on a bridge on campus.

    This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

    A portrait style photo of Angela.

    Turning on the TV or opening up the News app nowadays can feel like a chore. Or the opposite could be true — it may bring a sense of control.

    Developing obsessive news checking behaviors is a common phenomenon, moreso now than ever. People want to remain informed as often as possible. Nobody wants to be the “last to know” or be seen as “uneducated.” However, constantly having a stream of news media, oftentimes not good news, can be anxiety inducing.

    According to a clinical psychologist at McLean Hospital, Jacqueline Bullis, Ph.D., “staying glued to the television or constantly refreshing our social media feeds may help us feel slightly less anxious in the short term. These behaviors ultimately have the opposite effect.” (Bullus, J. (2020, April 21). 

    Angela sitting and reading a book outside the Business building.

    While it’s important to stay up to date in order to continuously be aware of how to protect yourselves and others, it’s not necessary to stay plugged in all hours of the day. It may be beneficial to designate an amount of time it’s okay to check the news per day, or set aside a specific time slot when reading the news is acceptable.

    Limiting exposure to news media outlets may be a key component to self preserving mental health. Not engaging in news-related conversation or viewing all hours of the day does not make someone uneducated, but rather is vital to self preservation. It’s important to set boundaries with friends, family and peers when it comes to these discussions since they can be incredibly emotionally draining. 

    While it is tempting to be up to date all day, the news will be there at the end of the day, or early the next morning if one wishes to consume it. The amazing aspect of technology is that things online don’t disappear: people aren’t missing out if they don’t click the notification on their phone for the newest Covid-19 update right away.

    Put the phone on Do Not Disturb and take a break.

    Angela sitting and posing.

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    Story by:
    Angela Colo, junior psychology major, Wellness Center intern

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Beyond the Classroom: Generation Action’s Rowan Chapter President, Alexis Thompson

    Lex stands outside on campus.

    Today we feature Alexis Thompson, who goes by Lex, from Lawnside, NJ (Camden County). They are a senior, first-generation college student and Psychology major with a minor in Africana Studies and a focus on reproductive justice. Lex transferred to Rowan from Hampton University in Spring of 2018. Lex tells us about Generation Action, what their […]

    DE to NJ: Biochemistry Major Catie Cordell

    Catie sitting on a bench.

    Today we feature Catie Cordell, a junior Biochemistry major with a Psychology minor. Catie is a first-generation student from Middletown, DE. She is involved with the Women’s Soccer team, Flying First task force and Pre-Health Society. What are some fun off-campus things to do within 20 minutes of Rowan on this side of the bridge? […]

    #PROFspective: Senior Psychology Major and Africana Studies Minor Cheyenne Uhuru

    Today we feature Cheyenne Uhuru, a senior Psychology major and Africana Studies minor from Sicklerville, NJ (Camden County). Cheyenne is a commuter to campus. She is a member of PsiChi, a Psychology Honors Society, and the  Africana Studies Club. Can’t find her on campus? Meet Cheyenne at work at H&M in the Deptford Mall.

    Cheyenne poses in front of water statue.

    Why did you choose your major?

    I’ve always really like giving advice to people, and I figured out over time that I can help people with what they are going through. I like helping with whatever issues are in their lives, especially African American adolescents. I feel like my experience can provide them the information they need to succeed in life and to get through what they need to get through.

    What would you share with a future student interested in your major?Cheyenne poses for a portrait.

    I would say that psychology offers a lot of insight into yourself as well as the people around you. It allows you to have a better understanding and have more empathy for people who may act a certain way towards you. It gives you a better understanding of why people are the way they are — also, insight into yourself and the way you act and the root of how you go about your daily life.

    How does your field impact the world? 

    Psychology impacts the world in a very large way. All of our actions and the way we move about in the world really come back to our mind state and our environment growing up. The impact I would like to have on the world is giving African American people a better sense of belonging and understanding of themselves in this world because it does get hard. I would like to provide them with a sense of motivation and inspiration to let them know they will get through what they are going through no matter what their circumstances are. They have the ability to succeed.

    How are you involved on campus? 

    Being a part of PsiChi Honor Society has given me a push because I am applying to grad school, so I think showing that I am dedicated to my major will help. It is helping me succeed for the future and my future career. Being a part of the Africana Studies Club also supports me in my pursuit of where I want to work with African American adolescents. The combination of the two helps me to succeed in my career and give me necessary tools.

    Describe for us an experience you’ve shared with a Rowan professor in which you felt like you were working with a visionary in your field.

    Professor Chelsea Young was very connected to us as a class. She used pop culture references to help us understand the concepts we were learning about. I just really appreciate the time I had in her class, it was a really good experience.

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    Story by:
    Camryn Hadley, senior public relations and advertising double major

    Photography by:
    Quintin Stinney, sophomore Radio/TV/Film major

    First Year Voices: Psychology Majors Katyana Rodriguez and Anaisis Santos

    Today, we speak with two freshman Psychology majors, Katyana Rodriguez and Anaisis Santos. They’re both from Salisbury, Maryland and are currently residing on campus in Chestnut Hall. They tell us more about their time at Rowan and their favorite spots on campus.

    Tatianna and Anaisis posing for a picture together while wearing masks.
    Katyana (left) and Anaisis (right) walking together outside the freshman dorms on campus.

    How did you two meet each other?

    Anaisis: Well, we actually met in middle school. We’re from the same place in Maryland!

    Have you met your RA?

    Katyana: I like my RA, she is really nice!

    Tatianna posing for a picture while she's leaning on a tree.

    Are you interested in joining any clubs on campus?

    Anaisis: I’m really looking forward to joining clubs. I would really like to check out some more Psychology clubs! I like Psychology because I like to study the human mind. I think it’s interesting.

    Katyana: If I find any clubs that are interesting to me, I’ll definitely look into it and think about joining.

    Anaisis posing for a picture while leaning against a tree.

    What are your favorite spots on campus to hang out or eat?

    Katyana: I usually eat outside the Student Center or right outside my dorm building.

    Anaisis: My favorite spot is Rowan Boulevard, I like going over there!

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photos by:
    Loredonna Fiore, junior public relations major

    Psychology Major, Admissions Student Worker Latifah Tilus Tells Us About Work-Life Balance

    Latifa sitting in the admissions office.

    Today, we speak with Latifah Tilus, a sophomore Psychology major from Hamilton, NJ (Mercer County). She’s an on-campus resident who lives in 220 Rowan Boulevard Apartments and works as an admissions assistant in Rowan’s Admissions office. She tells us more about how she started working for Admissions and how she maintains a work-life balance.

    “I like everything about this job! I really love it,” Latifah says. “I enjoy helping people when they’re applying or helping people when they come to the desk. Even though a lot of people aren’t coming in right now because of COVID and everything, I really like helping people out.” 

    Latifah has worked in the Admissions office for a year. She says she heard about the position from her professor in her Rowan 101 course and decided to apply. Luckily, she got the job and has loved it ever since.

    Latifa sitting in the admissions office wearing a mask that says "Profs" on it.

    “I feel like this is a great job to have because I’m learning a lot of clerical [skills], and I get experience for any other jobs I would want in the future. I’ve never had a job before this, so I think this is a great first job to get!” Latifah says. 

    When she’s not greeting people at the desk or helping out students with their applications, Latifah answers questions through the chat box on the Admissions site and assists with Rowan’s text system.

    When asked about the best part of the job, Latifah says: “It’s a pretty easy position to have, as long as you do what you’re supposed to and show up on time! I also really like my coworkers. I don’t see them much because we all have different hours right now, but I really enjoy seeing them.” 

    Latifah hopes to become a therapist in her post-grad future so she can continue to help others. “I want to help people with their mental health. I’ve been through some stuff, and I want to help people get through things too,” she says. 

    Latifah left us with some words of advice and why she finds it helpful to have a job while being a student. 

    “It’s really beneficial to have money while you’re in school. I’m paying off my interest while I’m in school! That’s where my money goes to.”

    Latifa sitting at the front desk of the admissions office.

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photography by:
    Stephanie Batista, sophomore music industry major

    Junior Major Moments: Law and Justice Major Nicolette Salzano

    Exterior shot of the Owl statue and the back of Campbell Library.

    Today we feature Law and Justice major and Psychology minor Nicolette Salzano. Nicolette is a transfer student living off-campus this fall. 

    Can you please share a favorite moment with a faculty member or a favorite experience in one of your classes?

    As a Law and Justice major, I have had numerous classes with Professor Houser. She is a great teacher, motivator and friend. She makes our classes engaging and interesting for each student and has worked closely with me to help me achieve success in the field. 

    Law and Justice major Nicolette at a formal event.

    What is the most amazing or interesting thing you’ve learned in your major this year? 

    The most interesting thing I have learned in my major this year is how many vast options of work are available to me. Being a Law and Justice major, the opportunities are endless in the field. It is great to know I will always have something interesting going on in my everyday work life. 

    What pre-professional experiences are helping to support your growth? 

    I am a member of the Alpha Epsilon Phi Sorority, Phi Kappa chapter here at Rowan. This chapter has expanded my horizons in so many different ways, such as making so many new and extraordinary friendships and always keeping busy with community and campus work. 

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    Story by: 
    Melanie Sbaraglio, public relations and advertising graduate

    Header photo by:
    Anthony Raisley

    RA and Psychology Major Jeremiah Garcia Gives 5 Pieces of Advice To Incoming Freshmen

    Jeremiah poses on the stairs next to the Student Center.

    Third-year Psychology major and Urban Studies minor Jeremiah Garcia recently spoke with Rowan Blog about his freshman year experience. Today, the first-generation college student from Camden, NJ (Camden County) residence assistant (RA) offers his tips to new students. 

    1. When you come to Rowan, make mistakes and learn from them.Jeremiah poses on the sidewalk.

    2. Recognize that you’re not alone. You get to meet new people with the same goals but different purposes.

    3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when things are hard. During my freshman year, I felt like nobody was there, especially as a first-generation college student, and I blocked myself into a box. I realized there are resources but I was afraid to ask for help. I had a rough start, and I thought that I needed to learn everything myself. Know that it is okay not to be perfect. There are always people with knowledge that you don’t have, and they can help you. The resources Rowan has helped physically and mentally, not just academically. The Wellness Center and Rec Center are great resources too.

    4. Step outside of your comfort zone and be the best version of yourself. Being involved helped me to step outside of my comfort zone.  Getting involved helped me built confidence and leadership.

    5. Don’t beat yourself up if your major isn’t right for you. I wanted to go into the medical field, but I wasn’t passionate about it. I took other opportunities and decided to switch my major to Psychology. Take other opportunities, explore and see what’s right for you. 

    Jeremiah poses next to a window overlooking Rowan Boulevard.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Photos contributed by:
    Jeremiah Garcia

    #PROFspective: Biology Major Kait Fox on the Perks of College Close to Home

    Drone shot of Science Hall

    Today, we speak to Kait Fox, a Biology major with a minor in Psychology from Williamstown, NJ (Gloucester County). Kait, who transferred from Rowan College of South Jersey (RCSJ), commutes to campus. She tells us more about why she chose Rowan and what a typical day at Rowan looks like for her.

    Kait smiling for a selfie.

    Why did you choose your major?

    I chose to be a Biology major because I was already on track with the course load previously completed from RCSJ. I am interested in the medical field and thought that a degree in biology would cover all of the bases for graduate school.

    Why did you choose Rowan?

    I chose Rowan because it is close to home so I am able to make the commute to and from school, not having to worry about dorms or missing my family.

    Another important factor is how affordable Rowan is, and that all of my credits from RCSJ are transferable to Rowan, so I transferred in as a third-year student.

    Kait taking a selfie with her friend.

    Take us through a typical Rowan day for you.

    A typical day for me usually starts mid morning (I try my best to avoid the 8 a.m. classes). I arrive at Rowan around 10:30 for my 11 a.m. classes. I like to be a little early instead of late, so I’ll relax in the lobby of whichever building my class is in. I have about three classes a day and usually one lab.

    When I make my schedule I try to make my classes back to back, or at least have a minimum 1-hour gap between so I’m not waiting around all day for my classes. If I do have a gap, I’ll meet up with a few friends and sit with them and chit chat, check my email, update schedules, work on assignments, maybe snack a little and “rest my eyes.”

    After my classes are complete for the day, I’ll eat lunch wherever I’m at for classes and then I leave Rowan for my internship at the health department. 

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photos contributed by:
    Kait Fox

    #PROFspective: Rising Senior Psychology Major Callie DeMaria

    Callie poses with her Unified Sports team.

    Today we feature rising Senior Psychology Major Callie DeMaria. Callie is an off-campus resident from Little Egg Harbor, NJ (Ocean County). Callie is a first-generation college student.

    Psychology major Callie poses with the Rowan owl statue.

    ​On your busiest day, what academic, non-academic, and social responsibilities are you juggling?

    On my busiest day, I usually have two classes I have to attend, then I usually spend the bulk of my day in Savitz Hall in the Admissions Office either doing office work or giving tours at the Welcome Center, then I will usually attend an event my sorority would be hosting or compete in an intramural game, and finally, I usually get dinner with my friends. To end the day, I will go to the library for an hour or two to finish up on some homework.

    Did you ever have a moment of uncertainty within your major? How did you get through the challenge? 

    I never had a moment of uncertainty within my major. I was very stressed about what I would do with my Psychology degree. Until last year, I had no idea. Then one of my professors introduced me to Applied Behavior Analysis. After hearing about it, I knew that is exactly what I wanted to do. Now, I am applying to graduate school to receive my Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis.

    Psychology major Callie poses with Rowan friends.

    Tell us about one moment that made you feel like Rowan was the right fit for you.

    I knew Rowan was the right fit for me when I took a tour of the campus. My tour guide was very knowledgeable and was able to answer all my questions. I was very interested in a lot of the clubs my tour guide mentioned as well. As soon as I got to campus, I got heavily involved and through my involvement, Rowan became my second home.

    Tell us about your transition into college and how you pushed through any challenges.

    College was not an easy transition for me. I was a homebody in high school, so leaving my family was very hard. I won’t lie, the first few weeks were hard. But once I got involved, and started to meet new friends, I didn’t want to leave campus. Since I forced myself to go outside my comfort zone, it helped me to feel more at home and more comfortable at Rowan.

    Psychology major Callie poses with some of her First Year Connection: Leadership group members.

    What advice would you give your high school self about choosing a college?

    The advice I would give my high school self would be to choose the college that feels like home once you step on campus, that has a ton of internships and opportunities for me, and the college that has a lot of extracurricular clubs and organizations I would love to join.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, rising sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    Prof Style: Mask Up!

    An assortment of masks made by a Rowan engineering student

    “This mask is better than other brands. I found it in Walmart for a decent price. It’s very fitting, does not suffocate and its re-washable.” — Max Husar, Junior, Civil Engineering major and on-campus resident from Middletown, NJ “My mom runs a health store in Berlin, NJ. She gets shipments with masks in a variety […]

    How I Chose My Major: Exploratory Studies To Psychology Major Sydney Basis

    Stock image of a student writing in a notebook

    Today, we speak to rising sophomore Sydney Basis. She is from Marlboro, NJ (Monmouth County) and is an on-campus resident. Sydney is a former Exploratory Studies major who then made the decision to become a Psychology major. She’s going to tell us a little more about her experience as an Exploratory Studies major and how she eventually chose the right fit for her!

    Sydney smiling and sitting on a beach, wearing a Rowan sweatshirt.

    How and why did you find Rowan?

    When the time came to start applying for colleges, I had not heard of Rowan yet. Some of my friends were talking about applying to Rowan because they had heard great things about it, so I decided to look into it. After looking around Rowan’s website, I decided to book a campus tour and immediately loved the campus environment. Before my freshman year started, I was still concerned that I could have made the wrong choice but after going to Rowan, I knew that it was the perfect choice for me and I couldn’t have picked a better school.

    Why did you originally choose Exploratory Studies?

    I chose Exploratory Studies because going into my freshman year, I had no idea what I wanted to do. I was really excited to try out all different areas of study because I knew I would eventually find the perfect major for me, which I did. This program was so amazing because it really gave me the freedom to try out everything I was interested in and I was not stuck to just one subject matter.

    Drone photo of Rowan's Glassboro campus
    After looking online and taking a tour, Sydney “immediately loved the campus environment.”

    What has been your favorite experience as an Exploratory Studies major?

    My favorite experience as an Exploratory Studies major has definitely been meeting people throughout all of the different classes I have taken. Since you are taking so many different classes to find your interests, you meet people from all different majors and all different career paths. I also enjoyed the Exploratory Studies seminars that Rowan held to give students an idea of what each major at Rowan was like and it gave us the opportunity to speak with the advisors in charge of the majors. This was very helpful to me.

    What major are you going into?

    I decided to become a Psychology major because I realized that I would like to become an occupational therapist in the future. Although Rowan does not have an OT program, their Psychology program and other classes outside of this program will prepare me for graduate school, which is something I am very excited about.

    How did you figure out what major was “the one”?

    I was always very interested in psychology, but never really knew what could be done with this degree. I looked at the program guide on Rowan’s website and I loved the classes that it offered. I then looked further and researched the different career opportunities in the field. I found occupational therapy through my research and knew that’s what I wanted to do in the future. Searching around Rowan’s website helped a lot through this whole process.

    Any advice to Exploratory Studies majors? Or general advice to Rowan students?

    For any Exploratory Studies students, I would definitely tell you that this program is not just about finding what programs you do like, it is also about finding ones that you do not like. It may be disappointing when you do not enjoy a class that you thought you would be interested in, but it is ultimately bringing you closer to a decision because you were able to rule out that field. This will break down your choices and find the perfect major and career for you which is the main goal.

    Also, if there are any fields of study that you do enjoy already, I would look into what careers you can do with that kind of degree. This is what helped me find my major and dream job. The Rowan website is very helpful, so you should check it out! 

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    Story by:
    Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

    Photo provided by:
    Sydney Basis, sophomore psychology major

    Header photo courtesy of:
    Unsplash

    RA and Psychology Major Jeremiah Garcia Reflects on His Experience as a Rowan Freshman

    Exterior shot of Evergreen Hall

    Today we feature third-year Psychology major and Urban Studies minor Jeremiah Garcia. Jeremiah is a first-generation college student from Camden, NJ (Camden County). Jeremiah is also a Residence Assistant (RA) in Evergreen Hall

    Psychology major Jeremiah poses outside with trees in the background.

    How does being involved on campus impact your college experience?

    I am an RA and I am involved in the Minority Association of Premedical Students (MAPS), and the Residence Hall Association (RHA). I was able to step outside of my comfort zone, learn leadership and confidence, and feel like I have my voice heard. As an RA I help incoming freshmen with things I had a hard time with. This has made me a better person and made me not afraid to use my voice.

    How were you able to make friends on campus?

    I made friends by going to the Rec Center. I was able to get my mind right at the Rec Center when things got hard and I met people there. I also met people at events, Rowan After Hours (RAH) and classes. Freshman year was competitive, but you have to be a leader in class and make study groups or say that you should get lunch together. It depends on the class, though. Some are more group-oriented than others.

    Psychology major Jeremiah poses at a Rowan After Hours event.

    How were you able to adjust to campus life?

    I was able to adjust by getting help and using Rowan’s resources. Putting myself out there was the best way to adjust. It gave me confidence and a push to succeed. 

    What does inclusivity mean to you?

    Some people are different, and it is important to have inclusivity so that people can make new friends and have the same opportunities as everyone else regardless of race, gender and appearance.

    Psychology major Jeremiah poses with Rowan friends.

    Do you think that Rowan is inclusive?

    Yes. Everyone has the opportunity to be in leadership positions, they just need to do well academically and have the confidence to earn the positions. Rowan is inclusive. 

    What are you looking forward to next year?

    Being on campus. I miss campus. I am also excited to get into new opportunities. I would like to try out for the baseball team and to get into an honors society.  It will be my second year as an RA and I am looking forward to the experience. I am also looking forward to taking new classes, doing well in my major and getting better grades.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, rising sophomore communication studies and public relations double major

    #PROFspective: Rising Senior Psychology Major Tiara Gbeintor

    Tiana poses outside in front of a tree.

    Today we feature rising senior Psychology major Tiara Gbeintor. Tiara is a commuter student from Beverly, NJ (Burlington County). 

    Why did you choose your major? I choose my major of psychology because this major has always been interesting to me. I knew with this major I could make an impact, considering my future goals in higher education.

    Tiara poses next to a tree.

    Why did you choose Rowan? I chose Rowan University because it was truly my number one school. Many of my friends are alumni of Rowan University, and I felt at home. Rowan was a great choice for my bachelor’s degree. It has been an experience with no regrets.

    Tiara poses with some friends.

    Take us through a typical Rowan day for you. When I first transferred to Rowan University, I was an on-campus student. I would go to class from Monday to Thursday. After class, my friends and I would get lunch and finish up any projects or homework before I would head to work. I enjoyed my professors. I would have loved to join clubs but my hectic school and work schedule would not allow me. Hopefully this semester I will be able to join some clubs. My class schedule is a little lighter, and I will do my best to be in a lot more activities. Also, there are many awesome restaurants on campus that I can’t wait to try.

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    Story by:
    Rachel Rumsby, rising sophomore communication studies and public relations double major