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From the age of 5 until 22, a person works hard toward getting a college diploma and their “dream” job. Senior year in college comes and suddenly reality hits: Next year is the “real” world and, whoops! I don’t have a job!
Job searches aren’t always easy, says Christine Richardson, director of the Career Services Office at Cazenovia College. “It is a slower process than, let’s say, 10 years ago,” she says. “A few generations ago you could hire someone on the spot, but it was hard to get rid of them. Now it is a slow hire, quick fire.”
According to Richardson, everything is economy-based. The economic downturn of the last few years has not helped the situation, but the difference is more that companies want to hire the right people. “It is expensive to hire and not having the right person can be costly to a business,” she adds.
The process to find a job is not all that different from the past, says Michael Cahill, director of Syracuse University Career Services. A student needs to start early. Even with the Internet evolving into a main element in finding a job, remember that the web doesn’t change the core objective, it only changes the tools to find it, says Cahill.
According to Cahill, there still are a decent amount of opportunities for students but they need to realize it might take time and a little more skill to find one. Cahill suggests starting the job process during freshman year. “Your best tool is networking,” he says. “It helps build relationships and expands opportunities.”
It is a scary prospect, indeed, this whole college thing. One day it seems you are safe at home, taking the bus to high school, and the next you wake up in a strange room with a strange person living with you. Then you have to figure out where the bookstore is, how to make the washing machine work, what that newfangled book-filing system in the library is all about and get to class. It’s enough to force you to pull an all-nighter!
But you needn’t make like Night of the Living Dead. In fact, look at this next step in your life as a chance to prove you are an adult, not revert to eighth grade and have your folks do everything for you. Resist the temptation to let it overwhelm you, turning you into the zombies on our cover (and left). Before you know it, you’ll have everything figured out, even learning your way around campus and, perhaps, venturing forth into the cities that surround you.
While getting an education is your first priority, don’t forget you’ve also got to have a life, and we’re here to help you get it.
The Syracuse New Times has been hard at work to fill this publication with information that you, Mr. and Ms. College Student, can use. What began as a campus publication more than 39 years ago has grown to become the alternative newsweekly for all of Central New York and a valuable resource for Salt City living. We tell you about the events, parks, museums, festivals, sights, food and people that shouldn’t be missed while you’re here.
Look for our paper, distributed free to many area locations around your campus every Wednesday (or visit our oh-so-nifty Web site syracusenewtimes.com) to explore the world you’ve chosen for the more important years of your life. Have fun—and turn to us to help you make the most of it.
On the cover: Many thanks to Syracuse University, the location of our zombie photo shoot, starring Matthew Button, Anthony Hinkelman and Erica Sanderson, all students at local colleges.
by Josh Blair
Lace up your running shoes, students, and head outdoors because come Sunday, Oct. 5, you've got something to prove.
Hundreds of people from all across the world will line up for the 16th annual Syracuse Festival of Races 5K, and the race's organizers have their eyes on you. They hope to name a collegiate champion for Central New York to see which local college has the largest number of participants and will wear the crown of the fittest student body, an honor currently held by Syracuse University.
In addition to bragging rights, the race also gives student organizations a chance to raise money. The Festival of Races allows any non-profit group to generate pledges and keep 100 percent of the donations. "It's a great opportunity for student clubs, no matter how big or how small, to raise money for group activities," says race director Dave Oja.
Can't we all just get along?
Every year, as students return to the university neighborhood, change and adjustment are required of everyone involved. Here are some tips to help make your stay in our neighborhood more fun, productive and satisfying.
Downtown Syracuse, as seen from the Syracuse University Hill. MICHAEL DAVIS PHOTOFirst, be a good neighbor. Remember that not everyone around you is a student, nor do they necessarily share your schedule, tastes or preferences. If you (1) keep your home and yard clean and (2) keep noise to a minimum, you should have no trouble maintaining a pleasant relationship with your neighbors. Be safe. The demands of school and the freedom of your new independence may distract you from hazards to both yourself and your property. You are not in a dormitory anymore; there are no resident assistants and no security guards. Strangers who wander into a big party at your house may just be friendly, or they may be casing your home for a robbery. With its transient and often naive population, off-campus student housing can be an easy target for thieves. Observe the basics of home security. Make sure your landlord has changed the locks since the last tenants left; find out who has copies of the keys. Don’t advertise your valuables: A stereo on the porch is an open invitation for someone to steal it. Buy an inexpensive lamp timer to give the appearance of someone at home while you are away. Be aware of the permanent residents who live on your block. Their watchful eyes may offer your best defense against robbery when you are at school or away during breaks and holidays. Syracuse Police can provide other common-sense safety guidelines; contact them at 442-5210. Remember that most houses in the neighborhood are wood-frame construction. Fire is always a concern. Make sure that all fire detectors in your house are working at all times. State law requires that barbeque grills be no closer than 20 feet from your house or garage when in use. Remember that fireworks are illegal throughout New York state. Also, think twice about accepting an attic or basement bedroom: Could you escape quickly if fire blocked your usual exit?
New York state is filled with plenty of nationally renowned private schools: Colgate University, Syracuse University, Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and the like. But the State University of New York (SUNY) system has been rising to the top over the past few years and everyone is taking notice. Gone are the days when SUNY schools were considered second fiddles to private institutions or deemed as “fallbacks” by guidance counselors or students. Today the SUNY system is better than ever: consider the admissions and building booms, and national recognition and rankings piling up at local state-supported colleges and universities.
Area colleges are finding ways to get students involved in reduce-reuse-recycle through workshops, clubs and organizations, and innovative approaches to being green. Many local institutions of higher learning, including Onondaga Community College, Cornell University, SUNY Oswego, SUNY Cortland, SUNY Binghamton and Syracuse University, have signed the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. They have agreed to explore green options for their respective schools. Binghamton even recently received recognition in The Princeton Review’s Green Rating Honor Roll, one of only 11 colleges in the nation to do so. Clearly that administration is making an effort to reduce environmental impact, and there are a variety of things students can do to help.
Today's students gear up for back-to-school season by stocking up on expensive technology, from MP3 players to laptops. However, most students are unaware that dorm rooms and schools are some of the most dangerous places to store precious electronic equipment.
Dormitories and schools are among the top five places from which laptops are most likely to be stolen, reports Absolute Software, a firm specializing in computer theft recovery, data protection and asset tracking. "Students have a false sense of security on campus," says John Livingston, chief executive officer of Absolute Software, with American headquarters in suburban Seattle. "Many students are bringing thousands of dollars of electronic equipment into their dorm rooms with little to no security precautions. It's just open season for criminals."
It's not just the hardware costs that students need to be concerned about. Since these devices are often used for schoolwork and personal computing, as well as entertainment, losing a laptop can negatively affect academic performance or put a student at risk for identity theft. Students need to know how to protect themselves.
Computers now play multiple roles in a student's life—notebook, library, photo album, stereo, television and telephone. Computers also serve as a primary means of communication for students with faculty, family and friends through e-mail, instant messaging and social networking sites. Protecting a computer is part common sense, part hardware and part software. Absolute Software offers these tips to students: