Stacy: Boston on a Budget

It’s no secret that Boston can be expensive. With finals season approaching, you might need to take a study break or two. Rather than stay indoors or just get the usual Sunset or Super 88 with your squad…. why don’t you go on an adventure too? There are plenty of free things to do, especially with great weather just around the corner. Check ’em out!

The Lawn on D

https://signatureboston.com/lawn-on-d

Check out this outdoor venue on D Street in Southie. It’s a large grassy area with live music, lawn games, fun ~Instagram-able~ swings, and other events! It opens May 4th for the season.

SoWa Open Market 

http://www.sowaboston.com/sowa-open-market/

SoWa Open Market is Boston’s largest gathering of local artisans and entrepreneurs. Each weekend features over 150 vendors, and it’s fun to explore and shop around! It’s open every Saturday and Sunday starting April 29th from 10am-4pm.

Vamos a la playa! 

http://reverebeach.com 

The beach isn’t as as far away as you think! Take the Blue line of the T to Wonderland, or take a $10 uber to Revere Beach! It might not be the exclusive, resort-like beach you’d plan a vacation to… but it will get your beach fix in!

Museum of Fine Arts

http://www.mfa.org

If you haven’t been here yet, go! It is free for students with your student ID.

Free Concerts at the Hatch Shell

https://www.landmarksorchestra.org

The Boston Landmarks Orchestra holds free summer concerts weekly! There are also tons of free things held at the Hatch Shell – but I can attest that this group is extra awesome. Quality concerts and a fun way to enjoy the community.

Sam Adams Brewery 

https://www.samueladams.com/brewery-and-craft/brewery-tours

There are free Sam Adams Brewery tours, with a $2 donation suggestion. This beer, whether you like it or not, hold a great place in Boston history. Check it out! Maybe enjoy a pint or two while you’re there too.

So, enjoy & good luck on finals!

Stacy: How to Enjoy Your Last Semester of College:

It is hitting us seniors at all different times… and it hit me during this past week on Spring Break with all my friends… that WE ARE GRADUATING! While the real world and future opportunities are exciting and around the corner, leaving college can be sad, depressing and a little bit scary. Never again will all my best friends be in the same place for a significant amount of time, and that’s not fun to think about. But, be an optimist and make the most out of these last few months! Here’s how I plan to spend the rest of my college career: 

1. When faced with the option to either go out and do something fun… or watch Netflix and chill at home… GO OUT! Having fun, making memories & spending time with all your friends will make you happier in the long term, no matter how comfy your bed is or how cold it is outside.

2. Take pictures! Don’t get crazy and let pictures ruin enjoying the moments… but stop for a minute here and there to document your day. Looking back later you will be very happy. And if you’re not the photo taking type, you can always journal things down to make sure you don’t forget things.

3. Eat at & venture to new places! As a senior, there are still so many restaurants I haven’t been to that I have always wanted to try. Stop re-visiting the same places and take more adventures out into the city.

4. Think about the legacy you are leaving behind. Whether it’s the TV show you work on for BUTV, or your role in PRLAB, you are leaving something behind. Pay it forward and make sure you are leaving the organizations and student groups you love better than when you found them. Make your legacy a great one!

5. Have fun! Be an optimist, enjoy your friends and make every day a different one. Try new things and live in the moment… you’re only an undergrad once!

Stacy: Things to Know About Studying Abroad in Washington DC

“Abroad” usually means across the pond or even across the border… but I chose to stay in the U.S. and study abroad in D.C. for the fall of my senior year. This was 100 percent the right decision for me. And yes, there is more to D.C. than politics and the National Mall.

The first two things people will ask you are, “Where do you work?” and, “Who are you voting for in the election?” It takes some getting used to, but you are never not networking. You will hear the word networking more than you hear your own name. But it is so fun to be in the D.C. bubble. You are right where the magic happens (or doesn’t happen depending on how you view Congress) and you won’t find a better place to experience policymaking and politics up close.

The Metro is more efficient than Boston’s T system – without a doubt. But the escalators to and from the underground platform are about a 2-minute ride if you don’t walk. So naturally, half of the metro-goers walk. The best way to indicate if someone isn’t from D.C. is how he or she maneuvers the Metro escalators. The left side is for walking, and the right side is for standing. Don’t mess this up or you will get yelled at.

Another thing to know about the Metro is that it’s sometimes more expensive than Uber depending on how far you travel. So before going underground, check Uber Pool to see if it would be cheaper, and it sometimes is.  Now, if you plan on Ubering in D.C… it is a city divided into sections. So when you’re Ubering or using Google maps, never leave out the “NW” or “NE” at the end of the street address because you will end up somewhere across the city. I learned the hard way…

This is very important…. Happy Hour is a thing! Yes, alcohol is exciting, but there is FOOD during Happy Hour too. My favorite experience in Happy Hour so far is at The Hamilton because they have a sushi bar… where there is sushi Happy Hour every day from 3-7pm. Half priced sushi people. It’s a big deal.

It is impossible to be bored here. There are things happening at the national level every day. This is the hub of international and national organizations. There are think tanks everywhere, free museums across the city, networking events and screenings for documentaries and movies all the time. But D.C. also has elements of a normal city, such as theatres, sports, nightlife, parks, shopping, etc. You can’t be bored here.

I know I said there is more to D.C. than the politics, and this is true. But don’t worry; you’ll still get your Frank Underwood experience. In addition to the politics, there is a city with its own culture here too. From one street to another, the vibe of D.C. changes completely. If you love the combination in Boston of history and modern day – then you’ll feel at home here in D.C.

I know D.C. isn’t the European adventure that Lizzie had in the Lizzie McGuire movie, but you will gain so much in this program. You will learn more about our country than you thought you could, you will gain professional skills from BU workshops and networking events and you will experience an intense internship that will give you more skills than a classroom ever could. You can always have a European adventure later in life. BU D.C. is preparing me for post-grad life, and I feel more confident about entering the real world after going through this program.

Stacy: ~My Life Changing ‘Walking Down Comm Ave’ Playlist ~

My playlist filled with 70s, 80s and more will change any day into a better one. Bad weather? Check. Got a bad grade? No problem. In a fight with a friend? You won’t remember after listening to these songs in this specific order.
 Enjoy, it’s my gift you:
Everyday People – Sly & The Family Stone
It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me – Billy Joel
Never Gonna Give You Up – Rick Astley
Sweet Child O’ Mine – Guns and Roses
Everybody Wants to Rule the World – Tears for Fears
Uptown Girl – Billy Joel
Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham!
September – Earth, Wind and Fire
Hold On – Wilson Phillips
December 1963 (Oh What A Night) – Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons
Video Killed the Radio Star – The Buggles
Don’t You Forget About Me – Simple Minds
(Add these if you’re feeling extra dramatic):
 
 
Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want – The Smiths
Africa – Toto
Careless Whisper – George Michael
Your Song – Elton John
Heroes – David Bowie
Add these if you want to embarrass yourself by dancing in public: 
 
 
Dancing with Myself – Billy Idol
I’ve Had the Time of My Life – Bill Medley, Jennifer Warnes
The Power of Love – Huey Lewis & The News
Flashdance… What A Feeling – Irene Cara
Jessie’s Girl – Rick Springfield
You Make My Dreams – Daryl Hall & John Oates
Come On Eileen – Dexy’s Midnight Runners
Sir Duke – Stevie Wonder
Hip to Be Square – Huey Lewis & The News
I promise by the time you walk into work or class… you’ll feel like a champion. Because you are one.

Stacy: A New Perspective

Sometimes life events happen that shift your entire perspective. For me, I just had one of these shifts. I lost one of my best friends from home on Valentine’s Day, and it was, and still is, the hardest thing I’ve ever experienced. I never thought I would lose someone so close to me so young. Laura would have been a bridesmaid at my wedding, she would have been an “aunt” to my kids, and she would have been around me my entire life. To not have her anymore is truly devastating.

After Laura’s passing, something changed in me. I really stepped back and looked at my life. Who is important? What matters? From here on out… especially with one year of college to go… I want to focus on what is important. I don’t want to care too much about the little things, worry about the future excessively, or put time and effort into things that aren’t going to amount to things in the future.

Laura was someone who always did what she wanted, and cherished her time with everyone she knew. She was kind to everyone, and always focused on making others happy. She truly fulfilled her purpose in her 20 short years she had on this earth. Her spirit impacted everyone who met her, and she was unlike anyone else I’ve ever met. I’m so lucky to be able to call her a best friend.

My advice for whoever is reading this post: live life. Take life day by day. I know it’s a cliché but it’s so true… life is incredibly short. Find your true friends and treasure them. Don’t hold grudges, don’t have regrets, don’t take anyone in your life for granted, and don’t flake on plans because you want to Netflix and chill. Don’t miss out on opportunities to make memories.

This can also be implemented on a minor scale as well. Eat two dinners in the dining hall if you feel like it, spend less time on homework if it means getting out there and meeting more people and spending valuable time with friends. Be kind to everyone you meet. You may not believe it, but a smile or holding a door for a complete stranger can really make someone’s day. It’s okay to not follow your plan. Stray away from your planner, take chances and follow through on your impulses. Life is too short to not live every day like your last.

So I hope you join me and take my advice. From here on out – treat each day is a treasure. I know I want to fill my last year of college with positive memories and immersing myself in my friendships. I want to live like Laura.

 

 

Stacy: The 5 Stages of Grief after Ending an Internship

So you’re interning at your dream company… and you are having an amazing time. But suddenly you get the e-mail telling you the password to your work e-mail is about to expire. You also get the e-mail from your internship coordinator in COM giving you the end of the semester paperwork to receive internship credit. How do you handle it? Through these stages:

Denial – “Wait, so I don’t actually work here?”
After working for a company or organization for a semester… you almost feel part of it. However, come finals time… you realize there is a last day… and it comes quick.
Adjusting – “Look at all the free time I have… it’s great….”
Not used to 16-20 free hours every week? How do you spend them once the internship is over? I guess there is Netflix… or you can exercise… or sleep? But who really wants to do those things?
Depression – “Oh your internship still has another week? Mine already ended…”
Watching your friends continue dressing in their business casual while you… don’t. You’ve already finished all six seasons of White Collar and re-watched The Office, so I guess you can take up a hobby? Knitting or… watching the TV station you interned for….
Anger –  “So… there will be another me next semester?”
You realize there is a new intern every semester… someone who will do the same jobs you did, sit in the same seat you did and have the same opportunities. You consider re-applying for the same internship.. but you know it’s wrong.
Acceptance – “I wonder where I’ll intern next!”
You finally understand that there is so much in your future college career to embark on, and you can take the experiences from your past internships – and use them in the future.

Stacy: FALL CHECKLIST:

With October behind us, winter is coming.

Before it gets too cold to frolic outside and adventure without wearing parkas… here is a list to make sure you’re covering all your bases this year in enjoying the fall weather:

1. Apple Picking

Not only will you get those ~basic~ instas and a new profile picture… but you will also get apple cider, cider doughnuts and all the apples you could want.

Check out Honey Pot Hill Orchards –  http://www.honeypothill.com

Also, Connors Farm in Danvers, MA –  http://www.connorsfarm.com

2. Visit a Pumpkin Patch!

Whether you take one home and carve it, or just adventure… it’s a fun way to take a break from your school routine. (Bonus points for drinking Starbucks out of their holiday cup at the same time).

3. Salem, MA

While this is the hub for Halloween, Salem is fun year round. There is so much history here, great places to eat and it’s only a quick ride on the Commuter Rail that leaves from North Station.

4. Be the first one on the ice

Skating at the Frog Pond is a Boston staple. It’s cheap to do, a fun way to get off campus and it’s a nice way to transition into the upcoming winter months.

http://bostonfrogpond.com

5. Coolidge Corner Theatre

My favorite place to catch a movie in the Greater Boston Area. They have fun events to attend, they replay older films and they also play the latest movies.  The theatre is gorgeous and in a fun area to explore.

http://www.coolidge.org

Hope this helps!

Stacy: How to Read the News as a Busy College Student

Reading the news is one of the most important things you can do as a COM major. Whether it’s local news, campus news, national news or beyond… as a communications major you are expected to know about breaking news before other people.

For some, reading the news comes naturally. For others, it’s a bit more of a chore. Here are some easy ways to stay educated, current and relevant in the news cycle:

1. Twitter.

I use it strictly as a news source. Start following the news shows you watch, radio shows you listen to, journalists you admire, government officials, sports teams, fellow journalism students, etc. In the morning I always check Twitter for 15 mins. Sometimes tweets lead me to videos, sometimes to articles or sometimes I just read the headlines. Either way, Twitter is an easy way to get connected and know what’s going on in the world.

(Also try TweetDeck, you can separate your news tweets from your social tweets. This makes reading the news more efficient as your favorite comedians or Madison from down the hall won’t be in the way while you’re trying to read.)

2. News Apps

I personally like AP Mobile (Associated Press) and the New York Times App. You can get notifications for any breaking news. Sometimes I’ll get the alert before the story appears on television or radio. Super nifty.

3. Student Subscriptions

As a student, you get a discount for a lot of publications (Boston Globe, New York Times, etc.) Definitely use these discounts while you still can! Also, in the second floor of COM by the elevator… there are papers (USA Today, New York Times, Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal, etc.) that are up for grabs! Free news is the best news.

4. Podcasts

A lot of radio stations have podcasts that outline what the major news stories of the day were. Only takes a few minutes of your time to get updated.

5. Buzzfeed

Buzzfeed does have a News section. Usually isn’t as in depth as other news sources, but it keeps it brief and usually has some fun feature stories you wouldn’t see in other places. Buzzfeed also has news quizzes – to check if you are in the know of what happened each week.  A good tool to evaluate how well you’re keeping up.

Hopefully you found this helpful!

Stacy: No plans yet for summer? Do NOT fear!

For those who still haven’t made summer plans – don’t freak out! You still have time. While many deadlines have passed, there are still opportunities out there for you to seize! Here are some places to consult and ideas to consider:

  1. COM Career Services! They have a list of jobs and internships, alumnus to network with and workshops to spruce up your cover letter and resume. If you don’t have time to make an appointment, they have a blog (http://blogs.bu.edu/comsos/) where they post new opportunities, jobs and internships on a weekly basis.
  1. If you don’t want a job or internship, think about taking summer classes! Either staying in BU for the summer, or going home and taking classes at a local college or university. Last summer I knocked out both my statistics and second language requirements to make room to go abroad, take a minor, and so on. If you take classes at your community college at home, I guarantee you’ll save money on your education.
  1. Get a summer job! Make some money to either save, spend on summer vacations or to use when you return to Boston in the fall! From working in the food industry to working in retail – you’ll meet new people, gain some life experience and make money. It’s truly a win-win situation.
  1. If you have the money saved, go explore! There are tons of websites with trips for college kids to go travel. For example EF College Break (http://www.efcollegebreak.com) makes insane trips to Europe affordable. There are some cruises that are super cheap on Carnival, go on a road trip with some friends, be touristy and go to Disney, have tons of beach days – your options are endless.
  1. Get in amazing shape. If you’re stuck at home, make the most of it! Get a strict workout plan and go nuts. Take classes at your local gym, get a friend to work out with you, make a plan for working out and stick to it! Come fall semester you won’t regret it. If you have some time to get some sun to match, you get bonus points.
  1. Community Service! There is always an organization or event accepting volunteers. Find an issue area you’re passionate about and whether you’re staying at home or working over the summer in another city, you can definitely ‘do some good.’

I hope this was helpful and I hope everyone has an amazing summer! Whether it be interning in New York, laying out at the beach, traveling Europe or volunteering at home – live it up yall.

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Stacy: Pre-Summer To Do List

 

The weather is nice, spring is in the air (or was a few days ago… typical Boston) and the summer season is right around the corner. You know what that means… time to go out to eat, explore and “treat yo self “(Parks and Recreation reference).

So I’ve compiled a list of last minute Bostonian things to do before going home for summer.

 

1. Go to a Red Sox game. I KNOW I KNOW, such a Boston stereotype. But I haven’t been yet so it made the list. The new dip in prices for students is motivating me to finally head to Fenway and experience the baseball culture before the end of the semester. Please hold me to that.

2. Bova’s Bakery in the North End. Let’s face it; Mike’s Pastry is overrated. Bova’s is cheaper, less mainstream and less touristy.  And it’s open 24 hours. Only a true Bostonian puts Bova’s over Mike’s.

3. Coolidge Corner Theatre. It shows classic movies, foreign films, documentaries and sci-fi features. From time to time there are new movies, but it’s fun to experience movies that aren’t typically shown in a theatre setting.

4. Maria’s Taqueria. Best Mexican food in Boston. It may look like a hole in the wall, but it’s a best-kept secret of the theatre district.

5. Raven Used Bookstore. One in Cambridge and one in the Back Bay area, it’s a great place to find your next read. Buy a book and go read it outside! Date day with yourself.

6. Dumpling Café. Hands down the best Chinese restaurant in Chinatown. Get soup dumplings, and your life will never be the same

7. Bella Luna. It’s a restaurant in Jamaica Plain with a bowling alley downstairs. It’s definitely not touristy, and a lot of fun.

 

Of course you could always walk on the Common, do the Freedom Trail, look in graveyards for some of Boston’s historical figures, explore Harvard yard… but let’s be honest. Most of us have done these things within our first month of college.

I hope these suggestions are helpful in your adventures during your last few weeks of classes, good luck on finals!