Camille Dings

cdings@bryant.edu

Hello! My name is Camille Dings, and I am a current senior from Harwich, Massachusetts studying Communications and Management here at Bryant University. Although I consider myself a true Bryant student at heart, my educational journey did not start here. After high school, I attended a community college for two years, and after receiving my associate’s degree, I transferred here to Bryant. I feel as though this dual-perspective has blessed me with a well-rounded perception as to what college can, has and will be. It is with this perspective that I wish to enlighten future and current students, and I hope to offer my unique outlook through my blog posts. I encourage your thoughts, viewpoints, questions and feedback and hope my posts inspire you on your own educational journey. Send me an email at cdings@bryant.edu and tell me what’s on your mind!


Transfer Talks

March 23rd, 2015

This past weekend, I had the great privilege of participating in a transfer student led panel before an audience of prospective transfer students and their families. During this time, myself and 3 other students of varying experiences discussed and answered questions regarding the paths we took to find ourselves as Bryant students.

During the session, I was able to get a better sense of hesitations and curiosities posed by students looking to join our community which I seek to outline and explain to anyone who may be reading this with similar interests:

What are the classes like? Coming from a community college often has a negative rep for having easily classes (so not true). But before I came to Bryant, I too had this worry that the classes would be very difficult in comparison to what I was used to. I feel as though my previous school did a fine job of preparing me for the challenges posed by Bryant's courses, and although challenging, the courses are manageable and fulfilling!

How did your credits transfer? One of the aspects of the transfer application process which I found so impressive was the sincere consideration when it came to my courses. From the 9 colleges I applied to, Bryant was the only one that accepted and really worked with my all my credits. I was able to stay on track and make a schedule that worked for me.

Was it hard to integrate into the community? As I have mentioned before, Bryant is notorious for their welcoming atmosphere. It is so refreshing to be part of an environment where people want to know your name! I found that joining clubs and organizations on campus is a fool-proof way to make connections with your peers.

Transfer students are really incredible assets to our community because each and every one of us offers unique experiences and perceptions to create a shared meaning in our new environment. 1 in 7 students in our small Smithfield community have transferred from other institutions -but you would never know it. Assimilation into Bryant's communal practices is almost instantaneous due to the welcome and cultivating nature of our community. While our experiences provide for foundations for new learning, new experiences are created each and every day that establish ourselves as Bryant students, not transfers.

 Interested in learning how you can transfer? click here

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A Healthy Community

March 17th, 2015

As any college student might tell you, maintaining a healthy lifestyle may be difficult at times as they try to juggle both academic and extracurricular commitments, the easy access of french fries in the dining hall and no supervision of parents to remind us to get enough sleep or eat our veggies.  The 'freshmen 15' may be less of a myth and more of a harsh reality for many.

Bryant University is much attuned to the health and well being of our students. Services such as nutrition advice and physical fitness plans are fully accessible to our students and healthy options are always on the menus and in the cafes around campus. Filtered water fountains are also are located throughout the campus to encourage hydration (and you're being Earth friendly when you fill up your reusable water bottle).

In honor of National Nutrition Month, Bryant Dining is sponsoring a Nutrition Fair on March 24th, from 10-4 in the Rotunda. This fair is open to the entire community and will feature food vendors presenting healthy recipes, fitness classes, cooking demo's by professional chefs, nutrition activities, lessons in sustainability, massage therapists, and of course everyone's favorite: free food and prizes!

Bryant University Dining Services is also hosting a healthy recipe contest throughout the month where students can Instagram a photo of their favorite healthy recipes! All you have to do is take a picture of your recipe, post it on Instagram and tag @BryantUDining!

 

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It is so great to be a part of community that truly cares for the health and well-being of all its members.

If you have any questions regarding this or any post, feel free to shoot me an email at cdings@bryant.edu... I would love to chat!

-Camille

Work, Study and Thrive!

March 4th, 2015

Living away home can present challenges, such as doing your own laundry or cooking for yourself; but with a little time, practice and concentration it can be quite liberating.

Managing your finances at school is very important and being attentive to where and how much money you are spending is crucial to maintaining a healthy bank account. While some decide to ration out summer job earnings and others may get some sort of allowance from their parents, some students find lucrative means to managing a job and school simultaneously -and its easy! The university offers many outlets for employment that allows students to focus on their school work while earning a little extra cash to cushion their school year expenses. I have found through my personal experiences and through interactions with my peers that working, either on campus through work study programs or through off campus options, can be very manageable!

"Working on campus is really nice! It breaks up the day and it's nice to have a change of pace in my schedule -it's not just all classes and meetings. Working in admissions allows me to meet incredible prospective students and their families and share my stories with them.  It is totally doable and it's nice to earn a little extra money, all without leaving campus" -Hannah Murphy, Office of Admissions Student Assistant

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"Working at Ace gives me the opportunity to interact with my peers, and gives me the opportunity to share my insight with others. Watching them grow is so fulfilling!. Working on campus is great because I get to set my own hours to my convenience. Additionally  I have found it builds my leadership and networking skills, I love it!" -Morgan Hunt, Academic Center for Excellence Peer Math Tutor

Bryant University is constantly looking for students in all aspects of campus life to work, study and thrive!

If you have any questions about this or any post, or anything regarding life at Bryant, I would love to help! Shoot me an email at cdings@bryant.edu.

-Camille

Life Hacks Bryant Edition

February 23rd, 2015

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 Who doesn't love a good life hack; a great strategy or technique to manage our time and activities in the most efficient and effective way possible. Let's be honest, our time in college is short…and the days sometimes just don't seem long enough. Academics, extracurriculars and our social life are all competing for our time and attention, so here are my favorite tips and tricks to get the most out of Bryant.

1)      Little known secret, the study rooms in the library are open when the library is not. Often times early morning or late night we may find ourselves needing a quiet place to study, these rooms are open and available to students but no one knows it! Classrooms in the rotunda are also available for study any time of day or night! You can even check online (Bryant App) when classes are using specific rooms, so not finding a space to study is no excuse.

2)      Set your class schedule to the lock screen of your phone during the first few weeks of class so you know where and when your class is meeting. Everyone gets lost in the first week or so, and this inconspicuous technique is perfect for any student on the go.

3)      Go to your professor's office hours: out of all my experiences this time will allow you to get clarification on information as well as build a relationship. An added bonus is you may earn some points and a positive reflection to your class participation grade.  This is a great opportunity for access to more course information that goes beyond your class lectures. But most importantly, it is an opportunity to build a relationship with your professor; seek insight about a certain career field or discuss future course selections.

4)      Love free food? Who doesn't? If you are strategic about it you could probably get three meals a day for free. Clubs, organizations, presentations etc. are CONSTANTLY holding events with free food. Learn a little, make friends and eat your heart out.

5)      Treat school like your job and you will be successful. Act like you're getting paid, do as much as you can throughout the day, prepare, ask questions, do your homework and you, my friend, will be golden.

 

I hope these hacks helped!

Until Next Time,

Camille

Cyber Studies

February 17th, 2015

With record breaking snowfall and blistering cold temperatures in our area it is no surprise that our community has been facing a few snow days. University administration is well aware just how difficult it is for commuter students, faculty and staff to face the whirling winds and mounds of snow to get to campus. Facility services have been working around the clock in recent weeks to best compact Mother Nature herself and to keep our pathways and parking lots clear.

But just what do these implications have for academics? With nearly a weeks' worth of class cancellations, teachers and students have turned to technology to salvage the missed class time.

Blackboard collaborate is an interactive online tool that allows for students and teachers to meet on an online learning platform. This virtual classroom allows class to be held in real time via cyber commute—participants utilize and online chat room with voice and video capability to meet and discuss class content. Professors may choose to make the content of their computer screen view-able to their students in order to go through PowerPoint slides or mediated content.

In a society ever advancing in the realm of technology, this snow-pocalypse has really given our community an opportunity to test the technological waters. From my interactions with my professors and peers it seems that the online classrooms have proven to be a great success during these severe winter conditions. It is nice to know that even when travel safety is at risk, our class progress is not!

 

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Have questions about this blog or anything regarding Bryant and my experiences? Shoot me an email at cdings@bryant.edu... I would love to chat!

-Camille

Opening Doors to the Future

February 11th, 2015

The Open Door: a symbol of opportunity, kindness and community. Through my experiences here at Bryant, I have found this metaphor to be incredibly prevalent to our communal life as a campus.

Through our academic stride and scholastic achievements, and through our hard work and associations: doors open each and every day to a brighter future.

As we seek guidance:  our educators and peers open doors (quite literally) to reach out a helping hand.

And too, as we walk through the maze of hallways, doors open by the will of our peers: eager to support one another at even the simplest of doings.

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We here at Bryant cultivate our communal bonds. There is pure understanding that we must work together for the common good, as corny as it may sound. Never have I experienced such a pleasure. As a transfer student, we sometimes experience some apprehension in our new environment but the radiating acceptance is palpable.

Come see for yourself just how many doors can open for you. Schedule your campus tour here to experience the sheer beauty of our beautiful facilities, lush landscapes and state of the art technology. Tours last approximately one hour and 15 minutes, and our led by members of the student ambassador program who live and breath love for our community.

If you have any questions about my experiences or in regards to any aspect of Bryant life, feel free to shoot me an email at cdings@bryant.edu.

Ready to Change

February 2nd, 2015

1863: a monumental year which marks the establishment of Bryant University; a university that has stood the test of time and has evolved through the influences and impressions of many. As with all institutions, impacts from our society and the culture of modern educational environments has played a big role in the direction of our future as a campus.

As a body of students, we find ourselves trying to leave a mark on a university which already boasts so many accomplishments. But the dynamic and impressionable nature of Bryant University allows for students to direct the future of the institution which is a quality denied to so many students attending other universities.

Within the last few months the students have had a strong push for change. As some of you may or may not know, at the end of each semester, students are strongly encouraged to complete course evaluations in regard to their experience in each course. At this time, the collective information received from student course evaluations is not reported back to the student body: but that may change. Students are currently drafting a bill to submit to faculty and administration in the coming weeks to change the access to results received from course evaluations. The bill cites that the access to this information will aid student when picking their courses to best find professors who will best fit their learning styles and educational needs. Access to this information is granted to students at many universities around the country -students who believe it is very positive for students and faculty alike.

In the end we find that universities, Bryant University included, are established to serve the students educationally. This bill as proposed by the students proves that Bryant is truly open to listening to students opinions, and keeps our best interest in mind.

For anyone who is interested in this subject, the Bryant University Student Senate is hosting a Course Evaluation Forum this coming Wednesday February 4th at 4:00 in Papitto. Feel free to forward any questions to senate@bryant.edu.

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-Camille

Helping Hands Holiday Party

December 11th, 2014

Helping Hands, a philanthropic organization on campus, sponsored their annual holiday party this past weekend where over 30 underprivileged children from our surrounding community came to participate in some holiday fun. Helping Hands has worked tirelessly for months planning the food, fun and fantastical holiday crafts for the children. Over a dozen on-campus clubs and organizations pulled together to make the experience one to remember. The all-day event also included a special appearance from jolly old Saint Nick himself who brought personalized gifts for those special children.in attendance.

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Sometimes in our hectic days of studies and presentations, it is so refreshing to take a step back and realize the impact we can have on our surrounding community. Even though we may be young adults, the festivities of the holidays always holds a sparkle in the eyes of each and every one of us. Seeing the appreciation from the young, needy children of our community is a vision that will prove to last far longer than the remains of bows and tinsel

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I had the great pleasure of hosting a craft table at the event where I helped children make snowmen  countdowns  'til Christmas! It was such a blast and I was so thankful that I could share in the joy.

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Wishing you and yours a very happy holiday season,

Camille

Continuing Down the Road of Education

December 2nd, 2014

As we all know, Bryant University is renowned for our amazing bachelors programs in fields ranging from business, to the liberal arts and sciences. But Bryant University also offers outstanding graduate programs that allow for individuals to thrive as they work towards a postgraduate degree.

Although many who may be reading this post may be at the very beginning of their journey through higher education, it is never too early to look into graduate school programs. It is projected that in our society, more and more professions will expect applicants to hold a degree higher than just a Bachelors.

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Currently, Bryant offers a Master in Business Administration, A Master of Professional Accountancy, A Master of Science in Taxation, A Master of Arts in Communication, A Master of Arts in Teaching, A Master of Science in Global Environmental Studies, and our newest addition, A Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies.

No matter how far along you are in your education, or your life, it is never too late or too early to consider furthering your education.

Until next time,

Camille

Bryant University: Not Just a Pretty ‘Place’

November 25th, 2014

Settled in the heart of New England, Bryant University is ranked amongst some of the best institutions of higher education in the nation, if not the world.  Our curriculum, boasts many unique characteristics that set Bryant far above the norm. For example, our Sophomore International Experience, referred to by our students as SIE, is an opportunity unique to our community. Students in their sophomore year are given the chance to travel abroad to immerse themselves in the business and cultural practices worlds away. This 10-12 day excursion is accompanied by a semester long pre-departure course to prepare students for all they may encounter; if you don't think it sounds amazing as it is, students also earn 3 course credits for their experience, (bonus!). And don't worry transfers, you are given the opportunity to be included as well, even if your transfer in after your sophomore year. Check out more about SIE here.

Another unique characteristic that sets us apart is our dual-college education. As you may know, here at Bryant University we host two colleges, the College of Business and the College of the Arts and Sciences. Students take courses in both areas of study to ensure their greatest of successes in their future professional and personal endeavors. Students majoring in one area of study are required to minor in the other (for example, I am Communication major in the College of Arts and Sciences, and my minor is Management in the College of Business). Check out all of our courses of study here!

                Lastly, if our distinctiveness in education isn't enough, our rankings push us over the top. I will let them speak for themselves:

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So yes. Our campus boasts architectural intrigue and lush landscapes, but we are much more than just a pretty 'place'.

Until next time,

Camille