Thinking Of Applying To Be A FROG? You Should!

Thinking Of Applying To Be A FROG? You Should!

The rewards are beyond what you would expect.

1787 August Orientation is a long-standing tradition at James Madison University. It is a week-long event filled with activities and talks to better integrate the new first years at JMU and within the Harrisonburg community. When they arrive, they are greeted by over-enthusiastic students in bright yellow t-shirts. Enter the FReshman Orientation Guides, or better known as, FROGs.

FROGs lead the first-year students during Orientation and are there to help them adjust to being at JMU. How did these students get to be Freshman Orientation Guides? What most people don’t know is the extensive application process and then training. This welcoming bunch applied for the position in January, a whole semester and summer before the students would arrive. Once accepted, we had a team transition day where we spent time learning and working on scenarios. Then, we gave up our last week of summer in order to attend all-day training where we learned how to be a conversation moderator, worked more scenarios, learned the do’s and don’ts of guiding the new students, icebreakers and setting up for the week. FROGs are not paid--it’s a volunteer position.

It sounds tiring but the rewards were beyond what was expected.

When I say being a FROG was one of the best parts of my college career so far, I 110% stand behind that statement. Being a FROG gave me an opportunity to be a leader in a community that once was foreign to me but became my home. I was blessed with the best FROG group, OPA (Orientation Peer Advisor) and FROG Partner I could ask for. My hall was filled with eager first-year girls who were ready to embrace every aspect of Orientation and JMU. Sure, the move-in days were strenuous but it only motivated us further. In one week, strangers became friends and I became a mentor to 18 lovely young ladies.

Being a FROG really gave me a new appreciation for JMU for having 1787 August Orientation. Most schools do not go to such great lengths to ensure their new students feel welcomed and at home. It also gave me a new appreciation for my FROGs when I was a first-year. After being on the other side, I know what they went through and the emotions that they probably felt and I hope they know that their efforts are recognized and I’m extremely grateful that they gave up their time to welcome us.

FROG Applications just went live for next year’s batch of FROGs and I encourage anyone discerning if it’s worth their time to just apply and take that risk. You will not regret the decision and you will not be alone in the process. You will have the entire O-team behind you which includes the Office of Orientation, the OPAs, your fellow FROGs, your specific FROG Group, your partner and the Office of Residential life which includes the Hall Directors and RA’s. You will literally meet so many people who want you to succeed and will aid you to your success as a FROG. Also, you get to do all the fun activities again but this time, YOU get to wear the yellow shirts and be the leaders!

Cover Image Credit: Maddy Whitfield

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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything

I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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Five Tips to Get on Top of Your 2019: Tech Editions

Yeah, there's an app for that.


Technology is the course of the future, why not use it to get on top of your new year? Make 2019 the year you stop sleeping on these great productivity apps and get grinding! Best part, all the apps I've included here are free.

Google Calendar.

Look at that beauty.

I LOVE Google Calendar! Not only is it a great tool to map out your week, it comes with cool features. You can color code tasks and events, get text reminders and so much more. You can even sync your calendar with other people's (this is very helpful for roommates or study buddies).

Google Doc File Folders


Sick of that long list of documents in your Google Docs? You can make file folders to organize all of your docs!

Momentum Chrome Extension

This is by far my favorite productivity app. It's a Chrome extension that acts as a home page whenever you open a new window or tab. It comes complete with the weather, a motivational quote and a to-do list! The best feature is their "main focus for the day". It keeps you grounded for sure- especially when it pops up with every tab and forces you to think about all you need to accomplish.


This is a to-do list on steroids- definitely worth checking out!


A to-do list app for your phone! I love this just to organize what my top priorities are.

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