Emily M. Socha
Hi Everyone! My name is Emily Socha and I’m a sophomore Global Supply Chain Management major from Southington, Connecticut. I love being part of the Bryant community as a student, Resident Assistant and the secretary of the Society of Global Supply Chain Management. I also work as a Campus Engagement office aide, UTC Aerospace intern, and student blogger. I hope you enjoy learning about my experiences at Bryant and the experiences of the many other people that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and working with. Bryant is an amazing community that I’m very fortunate to be part of.
December 2nd, 2013
Eleanor Roosevelt once said "Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart".
Eleanor Roosevelt was correct when she stated her wise words about friendship. But as we all know, friendship is a choice and one that is extremely valuable. It's up to us to nurture the footprints in our hearts so they don't fade away.
Throughout my life I've experienced many great times and other difficult ones. No matter the circumstance, I've always had friends and family by my side.
Being home these past few days for Thanksgiving break has really helped me appreciate the many people that I deeply care about. Family, childhood friends, teachers, colleagues…there are some people I know I can always count on.
Going to college can make it really easy to lose touch with these people but I don't let this happen. I'm always diligent in sending an email or making a phone call every now and then to catch up. I know I don't have to talk to my good friends and family members every day…but I do know that reaching out to them when I can makes them know that I haven't forgotten how much they mean to me.
A phone call or email can make someone's day. Sometimes it's hard with a busy schedule to find time, but I always make it. Making time for friendships and relationships is what's truly important. I'll get the assignments done and I'll pass my exams with good grades…that's easy. Maintaining relationships and forming new ones is the hard part. Whether it's difficult or not, I know that catching up with old friends and family has always brightened my day as I'm sure it did theirs. Friendships can always grow if you give them the proper nurturing.
December 2nd, 2013
There's some days that I leave my room at 7:00am to get breakfast, go to work, go to class, attend a group meeting, facilitate an organization meeting, go to work again, study in the library, hit the gym, grab some dinner and finally, shower and call it a night. Depending on the day…I may not get a chance to sit down and take a deep breath until 10:00pm after I can get all my tasks completed. Out of the 20 odd years that we students have been around…these years are not only some of the best years of our life, but they can also be some of the most stressful, testing, and physically and mentally draining ones that we've experienced.
My brother and I were walking on campus a few weeks ago and it was the peak of autumn. The leaves were nice fall colors, the wind was cool, the sun was shining, and I said to him "the leaves are just so beautiful this time of year". He then, being the funnier sibling, continues by saying "yea they're pretty nice…but leaves cause raking…you have to look at everything in perspective". And of course we both got a good laugh because it's not everyone's favorite way to spend their Saturday raking leaves…but it is reality when fall rolls around.
Since then, his comment has really stuck out to me. Sometimes in a funny way referring to the leaves, and sometimes in a real solemn way, especially as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches.
Sometimes my days are long, draining, and crammed with things to do from sunrise to sunset. I may come back to my room at 10:00pm and drop on my bed and let out a deep sigh of relief expressing my joy for the day to finally come to a close. I can be happy that I don't need to go to yet another meeting, rush to another class where a new assignment will be given, or try and grab something quick to eat when I'm running across campus to make it to work on time. But since my brother has said that statement…about looking at everything in perspective…I've started looking at my busy days in a completely different light.
For example…I have the opportunity to attend Bryant University and rush from class to class and be given assignments that are providing me with an amazing educational experiment. I can head to countless meetings because our school offers so many opportunities for leadership and involvement that our students can make a difference and take part in groups that will help advance their skillset and careers. I also have the opportunity to work on campus, make great connections, and earn a paycheck to help pay my bills. These are all things that I need to be thankful for on a more regular basis. Sometimes I can get caught up in the day-to-day operations of things but when I stop and see the big-picture, I am extremely grateful for the all the opportunities that I'm able to take advantage of. If having busy days is the trade-off for an amazing education and college experience, this is a trade-off I am more than willing to make.
Sometimes we need to take a minute and realize the many things we are thankful for. If you're a Bryant student….remember these few things next time you start to complain. Try and be a a little more thankful every day (:
1) Instead of complaining that it's so cold on your way to class…be thankful you have warm clothes on your back and a dorm room to live in.
2) If you catch yourself complaining about the food choices at Salmo…be grateful that you're not one of the many people who will go to bed hungry.
3) If you're getting angry that the Wi-Fi isn't working…be thankful that you have free access to internet and devices that allow you to access the web with ease.
4) Instead of complaining about the RIPTA being "sketchy"…be grateful you have access to free transportation.
5) If you catch yourself saying "I can't believe I have to go to class right now…I'm going to skip this class…or this class is pointless"…be thankful for the opportunity of higher education knowing that millions of others want to be in school but can either not afford it or are not granted the opportunity.
Overall, be thankful not only this holiday season, but every day.
November 21st, 2013
Whoever, wherever, and whenever….you are beautiful.
Too many ideas have been put in young girls brains that they're "not pretty enough" or "skinny enough". This is NOT true.
Everyone has a different idea of beauty. In my opinion, everyone is beautiful in their own unique way. The best way to showcase one's beauty is being comfortable with whom you are and having your personality radiate from your smile.
Social constructions of beauty have influenced many women in today's society. From young teens to middle aged women, media and other social influences play a huge role in society. Many people think they have to look like the cover model when in reality; the cover model doesn't even look like that. Take a look a Jennifer Aniston before and after her cover shoot for an Australian magazine:
Jennifer Aniston is a beautiful woman without being "doctored" for a magazine cover. Because we are so used to seeing these images in our everyday lives, we sometimes forget that they many of them are altered and fake.
Here is another photo to show the editing of another beautiful woman after a photo-shoot:
Sometimes we are too hard on ourselves. Girls, and guys as well, want to look nice to impress others. Also, looking good makes a person feel good. There's nothing wrong with that! But comparing ourselves to others and media influences is not the way to recognize true beauty.
Dove does an amazing job showcasing women of all ages, sizes, and races to showcase that every woman is beautiful. I hope you take a few minutes to watch the following clip that will help you realize that even on your worst day; others still think you are special.
November 21st, 2013
Yes, the people at Bryant are beautiful inside and out, but that's not what I meant by "Bryant Beauties"!
Bryant is a BEAUTIFUL campus. Set back from the main road and secluded into its own community, Bryant students can appreciate the serene atmosphere of our campus every day. A few spots can really take your breath away.
By tradition students don't pass through it until graduation. Even on a busy day walking to and from class, students will walk around it until it's their time! It's always nice to see alum or professors on campus walk through the archway while everyone else walks around. (Students have to be careful when they've got their noses in their phone texting while walking by it…wouldn't want to accidently walk through it!) Superstition says that if you walk under it before graduation, something bad will happen so you won't make it to graduation! Superstitious or not…students don't wouldn't walk under it!
The Rotunda (AKA the Roto):
It's a gathering place during the day for a quick friend break between classes, a venue for clubs/orgs to advertise for their events, a place to hold group meetings to tackle a project, and the heart of our unistructure. Bryant has one main academic building which is so helpful for getting to class on time and not worrying about running across campus! The atmosphere in the roto is always fun, uplifting, and is open with a beautiful glass ceiling for a pretty day view of the sky or a starry night.
Taking a nice break on a bench near the Bryant pond is always a good spot to relax and reflect. The water is serene, the autumn colors are a breathtaking backdrop and the swift wind rustling the leaves make it a beautiful spot on campus.
It's a bit difficult to focus on legal studies material or actuarial mathematics in an upper classroom that overlooks the beautiful forest on the backside of Bryant. This classroom is a beautiful spot because you feel like you're studying on the edge of the building and just inches away from the back woods.
Bello Grand Hall
There's a majestic feeling in the Bello Grand Hall. It's a place where groups gather for banquets, presentations, competitions, and other intellectual events. The Bello Grand Hall has a prestigious ambiance. When you're there you can feel intelligence radiating within the room and it makes you want to do BIG things with your life. I've sat there many times listening to speakers and admiring their stories, skills, and experiences. Whenever I walk out of that room I always tell myself that someday I'll be able to capture a large audience in a grand hall such as Bello and blow them away with a presentation about my life's work and all that I've experienced.
"Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Smell the rain, feel the wind, breath the air. Live your life to its fullest potential and fight for your dreams".
November 11th, 2013
Each year Bryant University hosts an Up 'Til Dawn Event to help raise money and awareness for the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. My nana was an avid supporter of this organization and since her passing I have made many efforts to contribute to this great cause.
I choose to become a Team Captain for the St. Jude's Up 'Til Dawn event this year. Becoming a team captain required finding 5 other team members and encouraging each member to raise at least $100 in online fundraising and pledge to stay "Up 'Til Dawn" on November 8th, 2013. The event starts at midnight and ends at 6am the next morning in order to symbolize the countless nights that parents and other family members are "up til dawn" thinking about their children and hoping that a cure is found for their children's diseases.
Our team goal was to raise $1,000. With our continues efforts, we ended up surpassing this goal and raising $1,870 in order to support St. Jude's. The research hospital requires $8.1 million dollars each day to operate. And $0.81 of each dollar goes directly to treatment research. With the combined effort of all of our teams and the other supporters of St. Jude's across the globe, we know we are helping to make a difference in the lives of children and their families.
The event itself was a fantastic night. We started off with some great food at conversation with other team members. Mingling at midnight as we were all wondering what tasks lay ahead. Soon, we discovered the first challenge. Each challenge enabled team members to gain more points and raffle tickets for items that were donated by local businesses. The first challenge an egg drop. We were required to create some type of cradle that would allow the egg to withstand dropping from 3-15 feet above the ground. As business students, we tried to use some engineering and physics forte, but without much luck our egg only withstood the first 3 foot drop.
Later our team participated in a dodge ball tournament, relay race, BINGO game, and a frozen T-shirt competition. Of all competitions the T-shirt one was definitely the most difficult. First, it started at 5:00am so at this point we had almost successfully been up for a full night. Second, the T-shirt was frozen in a bag and block of ice. The goal was to be the first team to melt the T-shirt and have someone from your team put it on and run to the stage. Needless to say, everyone's hands were becoming freezing as they were trying to use body heat to melt the ice. Then, turning to more drastic measures, putting the frozen block under your shirt and using stomach heat or back heat was the next major test. I'm glad my team members were supportive of the challenge and cause because a few of them put the frozen ice in their shirts but as for me…it was just not happening!
After this event, leaders recognized certain teams. As the 2nd highest fundraising team at Bryant, we received medals of recognition and sweatshirts from St. Jude's. We all had such a fun time spending time with each other and raising money for such a great cause! Team Hope will be back again next year and we plan on raising more money and bringing more hope to children and their families at St. Jude's.
November 11th, 2013
This week a few of my residents asked if I could send their GFOB (Global Foundations of Business) surveys out to our floor to help them gain responses for their semester long project. Sending and filling out these surveys reminded me of how just last year I was a freshmen working on the same business plan.
GFOB is part of the Gateway curriculum that was put in place to help students transition to Bryant and adapt to the work load, community atmosphere, and high-level thinking that Bryant students encounter every day. The most challenging part of GFOB is working on a semester long business plan with group members you just met. Bryant focuses on team-oriented projects which prove extremely beneficial in the work-place.
The Gateway program continues to entice students to engage in teamwork by facilitating the Bryant Innovations and Design Experiment for All program (IDEA) before spring semester begins. Freshmen class members will return to campus a few days early to engage in this beneficial experience that takes a real-world scenario and has students create actual solutions to actual problems.
The program also integrates Gateway sessions where students can choose sessions of interest and attend workshops to enhance their learning experience. This past week, the entire freshmen class participated in an ethics case study event and broke into small groups across campus to have open discussions about ethical questions related to the case and life in general. Following the discussions, students went to the MAC to listen to Dr. Badaracco, an ethics professor at Harvard. He helped the class break down the case but in the end said "you still have to eventually just make a decision".
I'm happy to be one of the freshmen who were able to experience the Gateway program last year. Already I can see how far it has grown and can only envision where our innovative Bryant professors and staff will take it.
November 11th, 2013
When a guy gets ready to leave his house he grabs his wallet and keys and is ready to go. Girls on the other hand have to grab a few necessities before heading out the door. Of course, we can't fit everything in our tight back pocket of our skinny jeans, so we carry around a purse to throw all our belongings in. Depending on where we're going and what we're doing will determine the size of the purse…but there's always a few staples that each girl ALWAYS carries with her! I asked a few girls around campus what they never leave home without or what they've carried in their purses from time to time. This is what they said!
Freshman: Clean & Clear Face Oil Absorbers…You never know when you're going to need a quick face lift!
Freshman: Men's deodorant…it's so much stronger than women's deodorant!
Sophomore: I always have mini-toothbrushes in my purse. They're great after a meal and make me want to smile more!
Sophomore: The other day I went to Froyo World with my friend right before the movies at the Lincoln Mall. We put the Froyo in my purse and had a great treat during the movie!
Junior: A mini umbrella for those rainy days!
Junior: A flash drive in case I ever need it.
Senior: High heels for presentations in the unistructure. I wear flats on the walk from the townhouses to save my feet for the day.
Junior: Mints/gum. Fresh breath is key.
Senior: Food. I've got to have a snack to get me through the times I can't get lunch.
Senior: Food for my boyfriend. He's cranky when he's hungry.
Sophomore: Band-Aids + medicine in case I get sick or hurt.
Junior: Tide-to-go, I'm so clumsy and spill all the time!
Freshman: Lotion for the dry season.
Sophomore: A mini-flashlight in case I ever got stuck anywhere in the dark.
Freshman: A nail filer…when I'm waiting in the car for someone it's always nice to touch up my nails.
Junior: A picture of my family that reminds me of home.
Senior: A planner with EVERYTHING I have to do written down.
Junior: Napkins, tissues and hand sanitizer for cleanliness!
Sophomore: A water bottle to stay hydrated.
Sophomore: Sweater, gloves, and a scarf. I'm always freezing!
As you can tell…girls tend to have many different things in their purse. Some common, some…well, not so much! But either way, our purses carry many things that help us out. For boys that can't fit all these useful belongings into their wallet, maybe they have a girlfriend nice enough to hold onto them if they need something throughout the day!
October 22nd, 2013
Our campus living room is back! Finally, somewhere to hang out with friends, grab a quick lunch/dinner, host group meetings, prepare with a club/org, or enjoy delicious ice cream from Scoop during a late night study session. New, improved and better looking than ever, the Fisher Student Center (FSC) is something everyone is talking about.
The FSC Operations and Leadership staff had been working on the renovation plans, details, and cost analysis for this tremendous update for the past few years. With finalized plans, right timing, and the big OK from President Machtley, the demolition was able to begin last spring immediately following senior graduation.
The walls came down the day after the former Bryant Center was closed and the renovation process began. This renovation would not have been possible without the support and guidance from Mr. and Mrs. Michael Fisher who graciously agreed to help support the renovation process. Michael Fisher currently serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Bryant University. The dedication to the new building took place just a few weeks ago and the Fishers were ecstatic to see all the pieces coming together. The entire Bryant community is extremely fortunate to have their support for one of the biggest updates our school has seen.
You can see from some of the pictures that the demolition workers were busy every day this summer. Starting with the third floor of the FSC which has been completely remodeled, there are now large offices for major student organizations on campus to meet, plan, and organize tremendous student opportunities. Some of the many offices you'll find on the third floor are the Archway, SPB, Ledger, MSU, and much more! In addition, there are also four work stations with conference tables and white boards for groups to collaborate.
The second floor is home to the Center Operations: AKA the heart of the building. Two important professional staff members who work in this office are Rich Hurley and Rich Dankel. They both oversee the building operations and know everything from the carpet thread count to FSC blueprints, brand, and future. Rich Hurley is the Director of Student Life and Rich Dankel is the Operations Manager. Both of these people are here to help students feel at home on campus and they greatly enjoy working with the student body. The second floor is also home to the Pride Center, International Student Organization, Campus Engagement, Women's Center, Commuter Connection, and the bookstore where we can purchase all of our Bryant Gear! There are plenty of comfortable seating options on this floor and it is a great place to study, hangout, and spend some time.
The first floor of the FSC is social, lively, and always full of energetic Bryant students. Happy to have more food options on campus, Dunkin Donuts, Nick's Place, Subway, and Scoop are all open and ready to serve! The information desk is located right as students enter the building and is a great place to stop when you have questions about programs or other things happening on campus. The open-floor layout and the light music in the background set the perfect atmosphere for college students to grab some food, relax, and spend quality time with friends.
The new FSC has so many features that will improve student life on campus. Whether you go to the FSC for the study space, the food, or to play pool on a Friday night with friends, everyone will be able to appreciate how amazing the renovation is and how hard the professional staff members worked to create this "living room" in our Bryant community.
To see behind the scene renovation photos and updates, check out the renovation blog that Mike Malenfant, the Head FSC Student Center Manager, updated throughout the summer!
Additional fun facts…
- 63 additional lockers have been added to the FSC for other clubs/orgs to store their items
- There's an Xbox and video games that students can borrow from the Information Desk
- There's an ENoteboard in the 3rd floor conference room that allows you to write on the board and save your work as a PDF straight to your laptop
- Nick's Place (Formerly South Side Deli) has a high-tech soda machine that lets you choose/mix flavors
- There is a PA system that will allow FSC employees to communicate messages throughout the building
- Located on the 2nd floor, closest to the Interfaith Center, is a hydration station to fill up your water bottles, stay hydrated, and help save the environment
- The FSC hires student employees…always check back to see if they are hiring!
October 22nd, 2013
With hundreds of institutions in more than 50 countries to choose from, Bryant offers phenomenal opportunities for students to explore another culture, gain new educational experiences, and form friendships that stretch across the globe.
I recently made my decision to study abroad in Aix-en-Provence, France this upcoming spring and ever since I entered the study abroad office I've been smiling ear to ear.
The decision process requires a significant amount of time, consideration, and reasoning. However, once you weigh the factors and decide what's best for you, all you can think about is when you'll be boarding your plane to a semester of new experiences.
I created a list of some of the major things you'll want to consider when choosing a country, program, and semester! I hope you take some of these factors into consideration when determining if studying abroad is right for you!
6 Important Things to Consider When Studying Abroad:
1. Country Choice
It's important to choose a country that has personal meaning for you. Reasoning can relate to language improvement, family heritage, cultural connection, or a life-long dream of visiting a particular country. At the same time, students should also consider countries they haven't even thought of. Bryant offers so many program opportunities and broadening your search is extremely helpful to finding the country that is right for you. When you start with a broad search and factor in personal meaning, you will find the country that's right for you.
Being comfortable communicating with others while studying abroad is extremely important. If you want to test your second-language skills or learn a new language altogether, studying in a non-English speaking country would be a great place to go. On the other hand, if you would be more comfortable in a country that speaks your native language, there are many countries to choose from that will give you a different cultural experience with the comfort of the English language.
3. University Amenities
Can you wake up and walk to class in 5 minutes like you do at Bryant? Or do you have to wake up an hour early to catch a bus to your first class that's 40 minutes away? Transportation is a huge factor in choosing a study abroad program. You also want to consider the course offerings. Many of us at Bryant are business majors and taking business classes abroad are very tough to get approved. Therefore, you need to plan accordingly and make sure the classes you take abroad will transfer appropriately.
4. Program Accommodations
Program providers offer many accommodations such as: housing options (residence hall vs. homestay), meal plans, excursions, laundry services, orientations, internet/phone capabilities, insurance, on-site advisors, etc. Be sure to compare and contrast the accommodations that each program offers, especially as you narrow down your search.
5. Your Expectations & Goals
It's important to know what YOU want to gain from studying abroad. In addition to an academic semester, what personal goals do you have while you're away? Studying abroad will force you to break out of your comfort zone, meet new people, take new chances, and experience new things. It will also help you learn about who you are and what some of your passions may be.
Students who have studied abroad in the past have said it was one of the most amazing experiences of their lives. I am so excited to have this experience this upcoming spring!
Bryant has many amazing resources to guide you through the process! Be sure to check out the Study Abroad Website, Study Abroad Fair, and Study Abroad Office for more details!
Above: Program Provider catalogs and other study abroad materials.
Above: 2013 Study Abroad FairAbove: Study Abroad Office space to discuss with an advisor specific questions, options, and program availability.
October 22nd, 2013
For most of us, the dreaded midterms that are worth a substantial percentage of our final grade have finally ended. Before we know it we will be headed home for Thanksgiving break to enjoy time with family and friends and right after that, finals lie just around the corner. In the midst of the last half of fall semester, we are already thinking ahead. It's time to begin thinking about spring classes. Wow — time flies!
When choosing classes, remember these simple dos and donts!
Do: Choose classes with a professor that is passionate for the subject, enjoys teaching, and is open to discuss the material outside of class.
Don't: Choose a particular class because all of your friends are taking it.
Do: Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor before registration to make sure you're on track for your degree! You don't want to end up taking a class that won't count for anything!
Don't: Assume you know which classes you need to take — always check to be safe!
Do: Challenge yourself! College is supposed to stimulate your mind, make you question your current beliefs, and expose you to new material and subjects.
Don't: Take an "Easy A" class. It's likely that it's not as easy as people say. Also, what are you truly gaining from a class like that?
Do: Schedule classes based on the professor & subject; not the time of the class. You'll make it work and taking a great class will be worth the slight inconvenience in the long-run!
Don't: Take 8:00am classes if you know you don't go to sleep until 2:00am each night — sleep is key to health and high performance.
Do: Keep an open mind! You may not WANT to be in a particular class, but do your best to learn as much as you can and make it a positive experience.
Remember to think of each class you take at Bryant as an opportunity to gain a better understanding for a particular subject. Yes, it may just be a required class that has nothing to do with your major…but at the same time, knowledge is power and the more knowledge you have, the more respected you will be. Many people yearn for an educational experience similar to ours so make every minute of it worthwhile!