Why New Jersey Is The Best State In America

Why New Jersey Is The Best State In America

It's not, and never has been, New "Joisey"
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I have lived in New Jersey my entire life. My friends were all born and raised here too, so my whole life I was in the mindset that New Jersey is just like any other state. It wasn't until I got to college and met people from other states that I realized something -- New Jersey catches a lot of hate. As I racked my brain trying to figure out what could be so wrong with my home, I couldn't find a reason to dislike it. Then it hit me. People don't like New Jersey because clearly, they are jealous, and I don't blame them. The evidence provided below clearly points to the conclusion that New Jersey is, unequivocally, the best state in America.

1. People from New Jersey experience all four seasons.

Snow? Nothing new. Swimming on a hot summer day? Been there. Which brings me to my next point.

2. The Jersey shore.

No, not that Jersey shore. I'm talking about the 130 miles of coastline NJ offers. Summers down the shore are an experience every New Jersey native knows and loves.

3. The food.

Whether you're eating freshly picked fruits and vegetables, Taylor ham/ pork roll (I won't start that debate here) or pizza, New Jersey has some of the best food to offer. If the corn or tomatoes you're eating aren't from Jersey, don't bother.

4. The amusement parks.

New Jersey is home to the tallest and fastest roller coaster in North America -- Kingda Ka. That's not all though -- the boardwalks in New Jersey also have amusement parks such as Jenkinson's, Casino Pier, and Morey's Pier.

5. Some pretty cool people are from New Jersey (besides Jon Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen).

Although people from Jersey love to talk about them, there are celebrities from New Jersey besides Jon Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen. Albert Einstein, Whitney Houston, Queen Latifah, Shaq, Frank Sinatra, Meryl Streep, Chelsea Handler, and my personal favorite, Danny DeVito, all can call New Jersey their home. Side note: only four members of the cast of "Jersey Shore" are actually from New Jersey.

6. Some pretty cool things have happened in New Jersey, too.

History buffs and fans of the musical, "Hamilton," can appreciate New Jersey for it's many historical events -- like the Burr-Hamilton duel, which took place in Weehawken.

7. We don't have to pump our gas.

Is the law prohibiting people from pumping their own gas in New Jersey necessary? Probably not. Is it nice? Definitely. Why get out of the car in the dead of winter to pump gas? And to dispel a common misconception about people from Jersey, we can pump gas. It's really not that hard.

8. The pride we have for our home.

It's undeniable that people from New Jersey love their home state and will defend it, day in and day out. We're proud to be from New Jersey, and if you don't like it, "Welcome to New Jersey, now go home."

Cover Image Credit: Odyssey Online

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34 Things I Should Have Brought To College At The Start Of Freshman Year, But Didn't

To the incoming freshman from the rising senior.
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Coming from a rising senior at the University of Dayton who has lived in an over-sized double dorm room, to a suite-style quad dorm room, to a house with virtually no storage space sharing an octagon-shaped single room (and single closet)... These are the random little things no one thinks to bring to college or put on these lists, but they will make your life on campus a million times better. I ended up buying these items long after I started college, and they were a big help. Don't make the same mistakes I did.

1. Shoe organizer

These are great for various items such as toiletries, snacks, and, of course, shoes.

2. Under-the-bed storage bins

During college, most of my storage has been under my bed, so this is a must.

3. Photos

To remember the happy times with your friends and family. Add to your collection over your college years.

4. String lights

Just to add a little something extra to your space. The dim light is totally relaxing.

5. Makeup wipes

For when you're too tired after going out to actually wash your face.

6. Extra sheets and towels

Trust me, you're not going to want to wash your sheets and towels right away so you can use them immediately. Bring back-ups.

7. Tide pods

These are awesome. Plus they smell heavenly.

8. Drunk dorm/microwaveable snacks

For when you come back after going out and the dining hall has already closed. Ordering Domino's or Jimmy John's night after night is NOT a cost-effective option.

9. Gatorade

For when you're too dead in the morning to walk down and get one from the dining hall.

10. Keurig and coffee

Just in case the dining hall runs out of coffee during finals week. Believe me, it can happen.

11. Chip clips

You will accumulate many of these from free vendors and events on campus, but somehow, they are no where to be found when you need one.

12. Paper towels / Clorox wipes

You can never have enough.

13. Rain boots

So you'll be able to make it to class on those rainy days without having to sit in soaking wet socks and shoes for 50 minutes (yikes). And you can jump in all the puddles you wish.

14. Alarm clock

If you're like me and could sleep the whole day if you didn't have an alarm, your phone alarm just doesn't cut it sometimes.

15. Back study pillow

Even if you don't think you will use it, you will end up wanting it.

16. Command strips

These are the only things that will stick to most dorm room walls.

17. Rug

Especially if your room has a cold tile floor instead of carpet.

18. Air mattress or sleeping bag

For your friends visiting you on campus, or if you ever go on a trip.

19. Disposable dishes

At least while you live in a dorm with a community sink.

20. Red solo cups

Because you don't want your morning-after milk or apple juice to taste like last night's $8 vodka.

21. Costumes/holiday wear

This is something I totally didn't even think about when I first came to school. Now I have an entire bin JUST for costumes and holiday decor.

22. Crazy daydrink clothes

If you have a few jerseys, you're set. If not, take a trip to the local goodwill with your squad and pick up a few things. The crazier, the better.

23. Towel wrap

If you're like me and just like to chill in your towel after you shower ( and a robe is too hot for you), these are a must. And they're super cute.

24. Wristlet/clutch/small purse

You won't want to lug around a large tote while you're out with friends or doing daily activities.

25. Comfortable heels

Don't let this be you!!!! I've been there, and nothing will ruin your night of dancing at the club like shoes that give you blisters and disable your walking by the end of the night.

26. Business casual and business professional clothes

And make sure you know the difference and when each is appropriate.

27. Water bottle

In college, your water bottle is your best friend. You never go anywhere without it, and it actually helps you to drink the amount of water you're supposed to drink each day (maybe).

28. Blender

If you're a fan of smoothies (or frozen margaritas) and want to make them at home for less.

29. Flashcards

Flashcards are a great way to study. If they're not for you, buy them anyway just in case you want to try them out. Or if anyone on your floor is desperate for them, they will be eternally grateful.

30. Mini fridge

When you're sharing a fridge with 3+ other people, things can get pretty tight. I recommend buying this with your roommates so you can share the extra space.

31. Calculator

Just in case you change your major and have to take math again (like me).

32. Thermometer

So you can know for sure whether or not you have a fever.

33. Drying rack

Because you're actually not supposed to put everything in the dryer, who knew?

34. Rubbing alcohol

Works wonders for getting those impossible Thursday night Xs off before your Friday 9 a.m.

These things have helped me make it through three years of college, especially freshman year. Hopefully, I have helped you prepare for your college years somehow. Good luck and have fun!!!

As an Amazon Associate, Odyssey may earn a portion of qualifying sales.

Cover Image Credit: oregonstateuniversity / Flickr

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Why Generation Z Is Going To Take The World By Storm

Generation Z will change the world

Jenn
Jenn
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We've heard it all our lives: "These kids these days" from our grandparents, parents, and other adults. We've become accustomed to being grouped with Millennials even though their age range is 1981-1996, which makes the youngest Millennial twenty-two. So what's the big difference between Millennials and Generation Z?

For starters, we're the first majority non-white U.S generation (yay for diversity). In fact, we were dubbed "Millennials on steroids" by Business Inside when it came to our opinions on sexuality, race, inclusion, women's rights, and God. But a big difference between us and the Millennial generation is that we are more realistic than them. Millennials grew up during a prosperous time in U.S history, but Generation Z grew up during a recession and know that financial security is not promised. In fact, a survey by Business Insider states sixty-eight percent of Generation Z believe the U.S is headed in a bad direction, more than any other generations' opinion on American prosperity.

And the last attribute that makes us different from our predecessors: digital comfortability. We didn't pioneer the digital age; we were born into it. We knew how to use computers by the age of five and could work smartphones better than our parents by age ten. We know the internet and how powerful it can be. With the knowledge we've gained from it, we realized we can start movements just by using our thumbs and learn new things with a click of a button. With the oldest Generation Z'ers being twenty-one, its hard to predict how we'll change the world, but I believe that we'll make a lasting and positive impact on the world.

Jenn
Jenn

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