How partying like a Pirate only leads to walking the plank

 About a month ago, The East Carolinian featured a front-page article saying “The Princeton Review named ECU one of the Best Schools in the Southeast, based on academic achievements and student surveys.” But wait; is this the same school that featured a similar front-page article back in 2010 stating that ECU ranked no. 5 on Playboy’s Top 10 Party School list? How can a University be viewed as both a “top party school” and “best in the southeast” for academics in two years?  A University where there were 1.5 girls for every guy, where downtown was filled with partying pirates. If you ask me I would tell you it’s because of the Pirate Nation’s dedication towards our academics and our ability to define the line between our studies and our social life.

Ever since I was a freshman back in 2009 I have been actively involved in a Fraternity and now I have a 3.0 GPA, declared as a Business Marketing Major, and have many service hours under my belt. Let me be the first to tell you, I didn’t do this by living up to the image others have bestowed upon us, such as the famous “you can’t spell parties without pirates” slogan, though I did have my fair share of good times. I did this by getting to know myself. If you don’t know yourself first, how can you possibly know what you are capable of doing and not doing? I’ve finally admitted to myself that I am a procrastinator. I know that if I don’t start next week’s homework before the weekend, I will be up all night Sunday trying to catch up. Once I realized this I had nothing but acceptable academic results. This made my social life better, which in turn made me a happier student. I maintain that “work hard play hard” attitude, one that our University shares. This is how we can be recognized for both our academics and our social scene, which are ranked higher than most of the North Carolina schools.

 College is a lot about getting to know whom you are as a person without Mom and Dad monitoring your every decision. Being in College especially in a Fraternity you are faced with many temptations, many directions you can take. Let’s be real, most of us put off our studies until after the weekends festivities’, especially football weekends. This is one of the most common mistakes that students make, especially freshman. Don’t do this! From my experience I found that if you at least start your schoolwork before the weekend you would be more inclined to finish it on time and with no rush. Another useful piece of advice would be to plain your schedule so that you have Fridays off; now this is not necessarily aimed at freshman because it is hard to accomplish this with your registration time slot and all of your requirements. However for those who are able, I have found that having Fridays off is a blessing. Not only do you have a three-day weekend but you also have a day you can dedicate to schoolwork while your friends are in class, this helps prevent procrastination.

 The journey to success may not be all fun and games, but in the end you will come out with a unique and beneficial experience, one that will help prepare you for the job world. I took risks and stepped outside my comfort zone. I made some good decisions and some bad decisions, but I can say that I have learned from them all. There are many paths you can take on the road to success; it’s which path you choose that makes you come out as a true successful Pirate.

 

 


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A Visit from a Social Media Guru, Chris Farlow

 

Social media consultant Chris Farlow came to campus Thursday, September 20th, to make a presentation to the social media marketing class.  Chris has worked with companies such as TGI Fridays, Best Buy, Proctor & Gamble, and many others who are giants in their respective industries.  He talked about his consulting work with these companies and the large role social media plays in these large corporations, ranging from things such as employee to employee interaction and scheduling, all the way to customer service.

Chris has been in the internet media market since 1995, at which point the internet was still in its growth stage.  As you can imagine, Chris has seen quite an evolution in social media.  At first, he explained to me, he would do things such as meet with executives and explain to them exactly what the Internet was and the difference betwen the Internet and AOL.  As the Internet has grown, so has the complexity of Chris’ work.  He is now involved in very complicated things involving implementation or evolution of corporations’ social media avenues.

With a graduate degree in Psychology with a concentration in Communication & Social Behavior, Chris was involved with research on the attitudes and influences of health behavior modification (i.e. preventing underage drinking or encouraging users to stop smoking).  He described how this research related directly to what he has been doing in his career.  In his line of work people to people interaction and the influence of famous or popular people are what make a particular social media campaign succesful.  He also talked about the differences between entering the internet media workforce in ’95 and starting a social media career today.  His best advice was to become a part of a social media community, because employers are now looking to fill internal social media positions with people who are already involved and knowledgeable about creating and running social communities.  Chris encouraged, “Call yourself a social media guru,” explaining that how one brands himself is how he will be viewed by potential employers.

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No Need To Stress, Here are Some Easy Registration Steps

It’s that time again! The daunting task of registering for Spring classes is slowly approaching. The stress of registering for classes was something I struggled with until my sophomore year. I have developed a system that seems to be foolproof and makes registering very easy. If you follow these preparation steps, registering will be a breeze.

1. Meet with Your Advisor Ahead of Time

When the time comes to schedule an appointment with their advisor, many students procrastinate and put this off until the last minute. Having sufficient time to make your schedule ahead of time is really important. Your advising appointment gives you the time to ask questions and obtain the necessary information for registering, including your registration time and pin number.Make sure to write down your pin number and registration time in your planner. Trying to register at the wrong time with the wrong pin number will lead to unnecessary frustration.

2. Make Two Schedules Ahead of Time

A part of what makes registering so painful is that often students are unprepared when it comes time to register. Making two “wish” schedules before your registering time will make the process run more smoothly.

Look at the check off list provided to you by your advisor to see what classes you still need to take and from there, make two schedules that you would like to have.
After making a schedule of classes you would like to take, I would suggest using the website ratemyprofessors.com as a resource in helping to decide which section of the course you should take. The website will most likely have reviews of the professors who are teaching the courses you want to take. This can help you figure out which professor’s teaching style fits your needs as a student. When the check list and the professors match up to your satisfaction, continue to Step 3 to complete your registration preparation.

3. Write Down the CRNs of the Classes Before Registering

Along with making two “wish” schedules, you need to remember to write the CRNs of these classes down so that when it comes time to register you can just type the CRNs into the boxes all at one time. In my experience, I have never once had a class registration go perfectly. Either a class is full or there is some error in the system. Whether you have to resort to using your second choice schedule or calling the advising department, the CRNs will help in both situations.

Registration shouldn’t be a time of frustration and confusion. Remember, preparation is the key to being succesful, not only in registering but also in life. I hope these steps help!

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COB Student and Coach

I had the opportunity to catch up and talk with ECU student and head coach of Greenville’s Babe Ruth 13-year little league team, Lucas Harrison. Lucas was born and raised in Greenville and graduated from Rose High School. Lucas ‘s team recently traveled out to Seattle, Washington for the Babe Ruth World Series and fell just short of winning the national title by one run (the final score was 4-3). Still, by finishing as the second ranked team in the country, they accomplished a bit of history by going further in the tournament than any other team from Greenville  ever has. I talked to Lucas about this unique experience, the rewards of coaching, and how coaching utilizes some of the same leadership skills that will be useful to him in business.

Why did you choose to major in business?

Lucas: My dad is a businessman and I grew up watching and learning from him. I would like to manage my own successful business one day.

Did any of your business classes here at ECU help you prepare for your job as a coach?

Lucas: The leadership classes I have taken here (the BUSI classes) have definitely helped me develop my leadership skills which I’ve used while coaching the team.

How did you get involved with coaching?

Lucas: My high school baseball coach encouraged the players to come back and coach to get an idea of what it is like on the other side of things. I’ve coached the past two years.

What was the most rewarding part of coaching? The most challenging part?

Lucas: The most rewarding part is definitely the relationships you build. Also, winning tournaments feels very good. The challenges would probably be managing the volunteer time, but I don’t really mind giving my time. Putting the kids in the right position to win is challenging.

Were you able to go sightseeing in Seattle? What was the best part of the trip?

Lucas: Yes. We went to a Seattle Mariners Game which was a ton of fun. We also spent a whole day touring Seattle and went to the big public market there and the Space Needle. Spending 12 days in Seattle with the team was a very humbling and rewarding experience, not to mention we had a great time.

How far did your team make it? How did you help the kids deal with the disappointment?

Lucas: We made it all the way to the National Championship Game, losing 4-3. It was tough to deal with the loss, especially that night after the game. Losing by one run  made it especially tough because the team realized how close they were to winning the whole thing. That was when it was toughest for the team and I. The next day we moved on. I tried to emphasize to the team their success and the fact that no other team from Greenville had ever made it that far in the tournament.

Lucas is currently a Junior in the College of Business and anticipates graduating at the conclusion of the Spring 2014 semester. He hopes to attend Graduate School in the future. He has appreciated all the support he has gotten here at ECU from his adviser and professors, who were very understanding when he had to miss the first two days of semester classes because of the team’s trip to the tournament in Seattle.

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MBA/MSA Application Tips

The process of filling out and putting together all of the components needed to complete an application for Graduate School can be  stressful and daunting. Having just started my MSA program this semester, the application process is not that far from my mind, so I can remember that overwhelming feeling.

My experience in applying to graduate school for an MSA (or MBA) was not really typical since I do not have an undergraduate degree in accounting or business. I always had an interest in various aspects of the business field and did consider accounting or economics at one point. But after going on a different path and not finding a good fit for me, I decided that I would try to get into an MSA program. From my own experience I will try to tell you what I think will help those who are not only like me, but also help those who already have a business background.

The first step should definitely be to get as much information as possible from various programs within the field itself. This includes visiting the schools and talking with students, professors, and alumni if possible. It also means talking to professionals within the field to help decide which particular career path you are interested in pursuing. Research as much as possible various jobs within the field so that you will know not only what type of program best fits your goals, but what career track within the program you might want to follow.

In my particular circumstance, I had to choose a program that accepted students with non-business undergraduate degrees and had their courses set up so that I would be able to easily integrate into the MSA program. I had always heard people say that anyone with any degree could get a MBA or MSA, but I found that this is not really true. It varies from program to program, and even programs that say they will accept non-business majors, sometimes require a transitional year or many extra business courses before you are formally accepted as an MBA or MSA student.  Once again, you really have to know the schools, what they offer, and how you think you’ll fit in.

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What’s Your Frog Today?

Mark Twain had a saying; if you eat a live frog first thing in the morning, you’ve got in behind you for the rest of the day, and nothing else seems so bad.  I would advise you not to try this at home, but rather think of the frog as a metaphor for the toughest thing that is on your “to-do-list” for the day.  If you complete your toughest task of the day you wouldn’t have that task weighing on your mind, and, having completed that task, you would start the day off with a sense of accomplishment.

I give credit to this approach to the article (linked here) I read from fastcompany.com.  They suggest each night before leaving the office (or closing your textbooks for the night for us college students) to choose a “frog” to complete first thing the next morning.  So our challenge at the College of Business is to tweet us your frog each night before brushing your teeth and heading to bed.  We are holding a competition and giving away prizes for our favorite frogs!  Do you need to begin that research project you’ve been dreading, start your gym routine that you promised yourself you’d do, or simply make an effort to call your mom or mend a relationship with a friend you had an argument with?  No matter your frog today, completing it first thing in the morning will give you a clear mind to help you complete other tasks more efficiently, reduce stress, and make you a successful student.  Trend #MyFrog, tweet us @ECUCOB, or comment on this post to enter the competition and tell us your frog for the day, and keep us updated on how “eating your frog” helped you get through your day.

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