Taking On a New Semester

Taking On a New Semester

A few tips for starting fresh

It's just like the opening verse of Taylor Swift's "Fifteen". All you have to do is "take a deep breath and you walk through the doors". A new year, a clean slate, a new beginning. You may have the same major and same group of friends and even some of the same clothes, but it is all new. It is the start of a new semester, the start of a new year, a new dorm, and a whole new year filled with new opportunities. So here's a few tips to have a strong start to your "new" year:

1. Keep an open mind

Do NOT close yourself off to anything. Change can be scary, but if you keep an open mind and an open heart you'd be surprised what kinds of opportunities can come your way.

2. Trust yourself

It is so easy to see that low grade on your first test and get instantly discouraged and start to doubt yourself, but don't lose faith. You got this!

3.Be YOU

As we get older we grow and evolve, but it's important that we don't compromise what its important to us in order to achieve. Change whatever you want, but don't be afraid to be you because you're beaYOUtiful. In the wise words of Lee Brice, "be a good friend and tell the truth and overuse I love you."

4. Change it up

Change can be scary to some and can often seem intimidating, but sometimes its just what you need to find some motivation or even your passion. So try that new hairstyle, hobby, or class and see where it takes you! Make some change to be the change.

5. Have a little fun

Sometimes we can get caught up in what feels like never-ending piles of work and responsibilities, but we all need a break to have fun. You're going to go crazy sitting in a classroom or at a desk for hours on end, so get out there and enjoy yourself or Im gonna make you!

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There Is No 'Right Way' To React To A Shooting

Everyone is different.


After the shootings this year in New Zealand, Brazil, and close to home for some of us Aurora, people have been reacting in different ways. With some offering their thoughts and prayers, donating money to help pay for the funerals of the victims, fighting for action in regards to ending gun violence, candlelight vigils basically anything that can help them in this time of grief.

There is no right or wrong way to react to a shooting — everyone grieves in their own ways. We should not judge one another for how we grieve in a tragedy.

People have been saying that thoughts and prayers won't do anything. However, maybe it can be a comfort to some people—a way to let people know that they are thinking of them and that they care.

Sometimes people may want to donate money or blood to help out any survivors who may have suffered from blood loss or create GoFundMe accounts to either help out with medical expenses or to pay for the funerals of the victims or even start charities like Islamic Relief USA. Donating your time and money is a good way to help out because you are making a difference that is a form of action you are taking.

There is also grieving in the form of vigils. One example of a vigil is this guy who makes crosses every time there is some kind of tragedy. Vigils are often a good way to remember the victims, to pray for the healing of the survivors, to talk about what they were like as people.

Some people even want to take action by demanding that the laws change a good example of this would be March for Our Lives, which happened after the Parkland shooting last year. This march was fighting for gun control or should I say changes in the gun laws America currently has.

Some people also do acts of solidarity, for example, wearing a hijab like the prime minister of New Zealand did when she went to go visit the Christchurch shooting survivors. My community college had something a couple of years ago called Hijab Day to help show solidarity with our friends. I participated, and it was quite an experience—no one should ever be afraid to be who they are.

There is never a right or wrong way to react, and no one should ever criticize one another for how they react. It's not a test where there is a right or wrong answer—everyone is different and that is okay.

No one should ever have to be afraid to go to school, go to work, or go to their place of worship or wherever they decide to go. Whatever we decide to do to make a change, as long as we are taking some kind of action, is good enough for me.

Nothing ever gets done by sitting around and doing nothing, so whatever it is you do, get out there and do it. As long as you are showing support it doesn't matter how you show it.

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