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FIT Club Spotlight: Hula Hoop Club!

A big part of the college experience is getting yourself involved on campus. Whether that be in sports teams, fundraisers, school clubs – you name it, it’s a good idea! Personally, over the past two and a half years at FIT I’ve been involved in the FIT Dance Team, FIT Skyliners Acapella Group and of course, the FIT Admissions Blog! Each activity was a great way for me to do what I enjoy, meet new people and feel connected to my school.

There is a club for anyone and everyone here, which is wonderful. Ranging from the ANIME club, to the French Language and Culture Club, to Media Design Club and to W27, the on campus newspaper. Can’t find a club for you? Well, if that’s the case you can actually create your own club! It’s hard work but it can definitely pay off. Just ask my friend, Amanda Gedney!

Amanda Gedney is a 20 year old AMC major (like myself) who was the pioneer and creator of the Hula Hoop Club here at FIT! Now the club holds events and bake sales, has many members and is gaining more every week! Let’s see what she had to say about her club!

BC: When did you start hula hooping?

AG: I started hula hooping about 2 years ago. Winter break of my freshman year of college my sister and I bought hula hoops from Toys R Us for something to do as an ab workout while binge watching Netflix. Then we started to look up YouTube videos and attempted the first trick “the lasso.” With many attempts and flying hoops throughout my living room, I realized how fulfilling hooping was.

That spring my two friends who go to Binghamton University joined the hula hoop club there. Once the summer started I begged my friend Taylor to each me everything she knew. She also made me my first beginner hula hoop, 38 inches (the wider the hula hoop the easier it is to use.  We played and practiced on the beach that summer and I was able to hoop at the first music festival I went to called Camp Bisco!

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BC: How did you think to start the hula hoop club at FIT?

AG: I thought to start the club at FIT because of the club at Binghamton. I thought it was so cool how my friends had the opportunity to be apart of a group of hoopers. It’s the best way to learn new tricks and understand each other’s “flow.” Flow meaning the individual rhythm each person puts into their hula hooping. I also wanted to find hoop space for the winter. In the city it’s easy to hoop in a park when it is nice out, but in the winter it’s impossible. Through the club I wanted the opportunity to have indoor rehearsal space. I also wanted to find fellow hoopers at FIT because hoop friends are the best friends.

BC: What steps did you take to create the hoop club?

AG: First off, it was a lot of work to start the hoop club. You have to attend multiple meetings with the student government to pitch your idea. You also have to create a club constitution and prove that you have ten members interested. The last step was getting the student body’s approval at the student council meeting. I’ll always remember that day. I had to stand on the stage at the Katie Murphy theater and convince the 75 people there as to why FIT needed a hoop club. It worked though! 

BC: What types of things do you do in the hoop club?

AG: We meet every Tuesday from 1-2. It is very casual and is a great stress reliever in between classes. We also go to concerts together and hoop in parks during the weekend. We’re not just a club; we’re a little hoop family always welcoming new friends! Everyone is at different stages in their hooping skills and it’s so great to learn tricks from each other. Every hooper knows that amazing feeling when you finally learn that new trick. This semester we’ve been learning new flow arts from new members! We’ve had some male hoopers, which are always welcome!

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BC:  Do you recommend FIT students to join a club?

AG: absolutely recommend students to join a club at FIT. Especially at FIT you have to go out of your way to be involved and I recommend every student to do so. In high school I was the President of my class and on many sports teams. Coming to FIT I wasn’t sure how to get involved. I went to the club fair my first semester and saw that there was a marketing club. Being an AMC major I figured that was the club to be in. I was very dedicated to the AMA Marketing Club and I became President the year after, which I still am currently. I knew that I also needed something fitness related and a great stress reliever, hence the Hula Hoop Club. 

My advice to new students is to get involved! It’s the best way to meet new people and find those with similar interests. My second set of advice is if something that you want isn’t available then start your own! My philosophy is if you don’t let anyone tell you no, you’ll soon realize how much you can accomplish. 

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Thank you SO much Amanda for answering my questions and informing the readers on clubs here at FIT!! You definitely are the perfect example of getting yourself involved on campus, while remaining a successful student.  You might have just recruited a few more hoopers…myself included :)

Have a great weekend everyone!

xx, Brendan

 

 

 

 

Getting my “Fall Fix”

Happy October Blogosphere!

I first wanted to share a fun fact with you all. It’s been exactly one year to the day that I was accepted as a FIT Admissions Blogger! I know that thanks to the trusty “Timehop” app, which I definitely recommend you all downloading on your smartphones. It has been such a great experience writing for the Admission Blog. I am so grateful for this opportunity and to be able to share my experiences at FIT and in NYC with you all! :)

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It is officially Fall, and I am so happy to be able to “say” that…or “type” that. October is the peak month of the season. I’m a lover of all things October. Bundling up – sweaters, scarves, boots. Pumpkins find their home for the season upon people’s doorsteps. Robust mums step into the spotlight as everyone’s favorite perennial. The air becomes perfectly crisp again, without having the bite of winter air or the weight of summer’s. Yet my favorite change will always be the trees. Ohhh lord, the beautiful trees. Every year feels like a surprise to me, as if I’ve never seen fall foliage. The deep reds, purples, bright yellows and oranges continue to take my breath away. I feel like I’ve been abducted and taken to a new planet – the planet of October. I can’t necessarily say I want to go back to where I came from ;)

New York City is a wonderful city to be in during the fall. However, I have to say I am biased to upstate New York, which is where I grew up. The sights, smells and tastes are what I identify with fall. Pumpkin flavored everything, cider donuts – my personal Fall favorite. Naturally, the fall season begins earlier upstate and works its way down. So, currently the city is slacking a little compared to the beauty of upstate New York.

Since I am not living at home throughout the school year, I make it a point to take a weekend during the fall and travel upstate. I have to get my “fall fix,” as I like to say! Spending time with my family is also a major plus :) So, I chose last weekend as that weekend for my fall adventure.

Taking a small trip every month or so is something I definitely recommend to students living in the city. I don’t mean you need to go home all the time. But small excursions are exciting and help to break up your semester. If you’re lucky enough to have grown up only a few hours away from the city, it’s obviously easier and cheaper to take a quick trip home. I feel that my trips home help to keep me grounded. As much as I love the city, it’s calm, quiet and familiar at home. I can breathe fresh air and enjoy nature. I can recharge and come back to the city fresh faced.

It was a truly wonderful weekend. I am so grateful to have been able to spend time with my friends and family and enjoy all the beauty of fall in upstate New York. Here are some highlights:

One of the days, my mother, Mindy, sister, Kate, her puppy, Jax and I went apple picking! As must do if you truly want to get the fall experience. It was a beautiful day when we ventured to a local apple orchard. As you know, New York is famous for their delicious apples!

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Mom, Kate & Jax at the orchard! <3

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I’m not that short…but the best apples are at the top ;)

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GOURD-geous! Get it?

The most beautiful fall foliage is best seen in the Adirondacks, which is a famous state park located in TRUE upstate New York. It’s filled with mountains, forests, lakes, rivers and streams. One of the days I went on an amazing hike at the Adirondack Interpretive Center. I can’t begin to explain how beautiful some of the views were, and how relaxing and quiet our hike was. I’ll try to let some of the pictures do the talking.

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Breathtaking

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To be honest, I didn’t want to leave…how could I?!

Thanks for reading, everyone! Get out into nature and enjoy this beautiful season!

Peace and Love,

Brendan

 

The Day My Life Changed

March 17th, 2012 – St. Patricks Day of my senior year of high school. It was an unusually relaxing Sunday. My mother, sister and I had all gone for massages earlier on in the day. It was actually my first massage, and definitely not my last. My body and mind were feeling great. My two best friends and I drove into downtown Saratoga, got some coffee and chatted. You could say I was thoroughly enjoying myself.

It was one of those oddly warm March days, where you start to believe its already spring. You break out the light jackets, forgo the socks, and proudly don your favorite sunglasses. The drive home with my friends from downtown consisted of all windows down and blasting our favorite music. Ugh, it was a wonderful afternoon.

As we pulled into my driveway, I said my goodbyes to my best friends. We each complained about the amount of homework “we would be doing” later on that evening. We were seniors in high school with full blown senioritis, to be honest, that homework was probably never completed.

I walked into my kitchen and my mom was standing at the counter. She asked how my afternoon was, we talked, and then she went silent. I looked at her and she was holding an envelope out to me. It looked like junk mail, in one of those business letter envelopes. It wasn’t super big, it wasn’t too small. When I grabbed the letter and read where it was from, I stopped breathing. “Fashion Institute of Technology.”

This was THE letter. The letter that would make or break me. The letter telling me if I was going to college. The letter that determined if I was going to be leaving home in the fall or going to community college, seeing as I was too lazy to apply anywhere else. I wanted to go to FIT so bad I didn’t have my sights set on anywhere else.

But who get’s their college acceptance letter in a small business sized envelope?! I was picturing some big package, with the famous “Welcome to the Fashion Institute of Technology” red and black folder I had so often seen in my research on Facebook. If this small envelope had a big folder in it, I would be pleasantly surprised…but I wasn’t about to get my hopes up.

I began to laugh nervously, spouting out a hundred “Oh my Gods.” My mom and I stood in my kitchen, as I ran my thumb under the seal of the envelope. My heart rate was unhealthily high at this point as I unfolded the single sheet of paper in this business size envelope. My mom read the letter next to me, our eyes scanning immediately to the first sentence.

“Dear Brendan, ………Congratulations! You’ve been”

I’m pretty sure we each let out a big scream…and then immediately we both began crying and went in for a hug. I cry when I’m happy, I cry when I’m sad – something I definitely got from my mother.

I was beyond happy. My dreams were coming true! I would be moving to New York City. I would be studying at one of the most prestigious fashion schools in the WORLD. I would be taking the first steps in achieving my goals! I couldn’t believe it. Now I could take a deep breath, I knew I was going to college. The rest of my senior year would just be about having fun and enjoying life. No stress.

The reason my acceptance letter was so small was because I was accepted early, into a group of “exceptional students.” It was such a privilege to receive my acceptance letter so early. And don’t worry, a few weeks later I received that famous black and red folder I had been dreaming about…in a much bigger envelope!

My life changed that day. Its hard for me to remember life before NYC and FIT. But here I am, living in New York, working hard, having fun and still making my dreams come true.

I don’t think any other St. Patrick’s Day will ever be as special as that one. Maybe it was the luck of the irish that brought me that acceptance letter that day. Whatever it was, I am so thankful that it happened.

Be looking out for some exciting pieces of mail within the next few weeks! Your life could be changing too :)

xx, Brendan

 

 

Three Tips for Group Projects

Well, we’re almost a quarter of the way through Spring 2014 semester! Time is fllllyin! And in regards to my classes….that means midterms are around the corner, and FINALS not far after that! WOAH! No matter how much I am dying for summer, I hate to rush away the rest of the semester.

In almost all of my classes this semester, my term project has already been assigned and there is a commonality between each project. I’m working in a group for each one! To be honest, I’ve always had a slight fear of group projects….I’m very much a control freak and would rather take on a whole project myself, especially one that’s being graded. I knew a semester like this would be coming and now its finally here.

But I can’t get myself too worried because there are so many benefits to working in a group. Of course you hear the horror stories of a single student doing an entire project the night before its due, because his group flaked out. That’s an exception! There are many positive aspects to working in a group for a project. For example, you don’t have to take on as much work. In a good group, every member is doing an equal amount of work so that no one is too stressed out. Also, you tend to learn more because you’re able to discuss the topics with your other group members! Most importantly, its a great excuse to make some new friends!

Here are three tips to remember when you work on a group project this semester, or a semester in the future!

1. Set up a form of communication

Communication is NECESSARY to complete a group project successfully. Luckily, we live in an age where you can communicate anywhere, anytime. Make sure you get the phone numbers of each of your group members so that you’re able to text them to set up meeting times. Another great way to communicate is through Google Docs and Google Drive. Google offers an area where you and your group members can all edit and work on a document. It’s a great place for making notes and throwing around ideas.

2. Be open to everyone’s ideas

For the shyer type, a group project can be very daunting. Some students would rather sit in the back of class, take notes from the professor, and go home after that, not making a peep the whole time. It’s important to introduce everyone in the group to establish a level of comfort. If you’re more of a confident person, be the one to begin introductions. Then ask around if anyone has ideas for the said project. Try not to make faces, roll your eyes or laugh at someone’s idea. To them it may be the best they  have! Each idea is something to build and jump off of.

3. Establish who’s doing what

Like I mentioned before, there are sometimes horror stories of one student doing a whole group project themselves. This isn’t the point of group projects, and professors would hate to hear this. By giving tasks to each group member, setting due dates, and discussing as a group each persons role, you’ll most likely have a more successful project in the end. Most often, professors have a student rating system that they give at the end of the project. If you feel like one student didn’t fairly do their part, this is where you voice your concerns.

I wish you the best of luck on your projects throughout the semester!

xx, Brendan

Back In the New York Groove

New York City has a flow like no other. Everyone walking is in a rush to be somewhere and they’re most likely running late. A walk down the street doesn’t just get you to your destination but also doubles as cardio! If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. Or NY’s version, If you can’t walk fast, GET OUT OF MY WAY! ;)

Needless to say, the pace of New York is much different from my hometown. And I love it. However, when you’re out of the city for SEVEN WEEKS (much too long for me) it takes a day or two to readjust. I have to use the New Yorker part of my brain, and put on my New Yorker legs. There’s an art to bobbing and weaving through pedestrians without bumping into them and I must say I’m an expert artist!

Now that I’m synchronized with the pace of the city, I look forward to starting my semester at FIT! This is the first semester where I’m taking all major related courses! I find that something to celebrate. No more science, history, math classes…well at least until my bachelors, I think.

This semester I’m taking Sales Promotion, Research Methods in IMC, Advertising Copywriting, Audience & Media and the Credited Internship class. It’s so awesome once you start to see lessons from one class being integrated into another. That’s when you really start to absorb all the information because you see where it all fits in the industry.

My schedule this semester is also very on point. I intern with fashion designer Daniel Vosovic at the CFDA Incubator Mondays and Tuesdays, work on wednesdays (eyeroll but money doesn’t grow on trees), and class Thursday and Friday, and work Saturdays! I’m already loving the different structure this semester. Being in the industry two days out of the week teaches me a lot, sometimes more than I’d learn in a classroom setting.

Spring semester comes with a side of optimism. No matter how frigid and indecisive Mother Nature is the first month or two, Spring IS right around the corner. NYC comes back to life along with all living in it. Trees bud, flowers bloom, and opportunities arise for everyone. I can’t begin to explain how magical NYC is in the springtime. And did I mention summer comes after spring? ;)

Springy thoughts my friends!

xx, Brendan