Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Nick @ Life

Hey, incoming class of 2022! My name is Nicholas (Nick) Wiggins and I am originally from Dothan, AL. I have just begun my sophomore year as a mechanical engineer major and I pretty much spend my days drowning in homework. . . In all seriousness though, I love my major and I love it here at South.

I'm definitely engaged, and I don't plan on slowing down soon. Right now, I am a member of Kiwanis International, Phi Kappa Sigma Fraternity, AED, and Sonrise Baptist Church. All of this on top of a 17 hour courseload and 16 hour workload. I say all of that to show that you can do it too. It's okay to have a lot on your plate when you get to college, it's imminent actually. Don't be discouraged though; South Alabama has many great resources here on campus to help you adjust and make the most of the time you have in every day. Obviously, there is a fine line between overachieving and crying hysterically (the phrase "fake it 'til you make it" has absolutely no correlation with college), so it's important that you find what's important to you and dive whole-heartedly into it.

You should also find time for friends and alone time as well! In my free time, I enjoy travelling, playing the piano, and playing almost any sport. Since coming to college, I've been introduced to many new sports, spike ball on the beach being one of them, and I'm convinced that I could get a full ride scholarship playing spike ball on the beach if the university ever offers it as a sport.

To sum me up in 3 statements, I'm:

R   eady for each and every new adventure,
A   wkward with first impressions, but awesome to have as a friend,
D   oing my best to be the best me.

This is only a glimpse of who I am. Come to South and when we pass on the sidewalk, stop me and I'd be more than happy to get to know you more.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Which office has been the most helpful my first year at South?

This is a tricky subject, because every office has been helpful in their own special way. I do know, however, which office that has associated with my life the most.
Jaguar Productions, a student run office located in the student center puts on events throughout the year in hopes of breaking up the monotony of week in week out studying. Personally, I have taken advantage of their discount movie tickets: you can purchase movie tickets to Carmike or AMG theaters for $6 rather than full price, and you can do that 10 times per semester. Also, Jag Productions put on a Mardi Gras Ball and a block party at different times throughout the year with live music! They also coordinate with famous bands and comedians to come to campus. Jeremih came this semester and performed at the Mitchell Center and many of my friends had an awesome time. Now, as finals approach, Jag Productions are still working for the student body by bringing snacks to the student center at night all week, as well as organizing stress relieving games such as bow tag.
All in all, I believe that this office on campus has been the most helpful my first year at South because they have been the most proactive in my life. I look forward to seeing what they come up with next!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

#WhatMoney?

How does one survive on a college budget? In a perfect world, easily.

What one should do, and what I have strived to accomplish these past two semesters, in order to survive in college monetarily, is to possess impeccable time organizational skills.
In order to be fully self sustaining in college, you need to take the minimum amount of hours to still be considered a full time student (12 hours per semester) unless you are on a scholarship, then the minimum amount of hours is 15. I advise the lower number because less class means less homework, and more sleep. While you are not in class, however, you must work at a job, and depending on the pay, work between 10-20 hours per week. Typically, what this will look like for a student's day is classes all morning (beginning at 8 am), work all afternoon, and then homework late into the night until it is finished. As far as where to live, a fully sustained student needs to find a place to live with very low rent, preferably with friends, and close enough to campus to either walk or ride your bike to class (in order to not pay for gas). In terms of what to eat, absolutely no eating out. If you are not on a meal plan on campus, purchase groceries once a week (you'll need to be proactive in searching for coupons) and cook for yourself throughout the week. You'll want to eat healthy and not just ramen noodles; if you don't take care of your body, you won't have the energy to do your hectic schedule. If you stay focused and work hard throughout the week. You may be able to find some personal time during the weekends that you can either fill with a nap, or with friends. Altogether, however, your living regiment will feel like a job.

You often hear college students say it's impossible to live on a college budget. This is not true. It is possible if you are willing to work at it, and sacrifice pleasure for progress. I'm here to tell you that it is possible. It's not fun during it, but when you graduate with little to no loan debt, it'll definitely be worth it.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

#GetMotivated

My motivation for every aspect of my life is scripture I have memorized growing up.
My work ethic is motivated by Colossians 3:23, "Work at everything as if working for the Lord."
I am motivated when I am feeling down by 1 Peter 5:7, "Cast all of your anxieties on Him, for He cares about you."
These two, along with many other encouraging words from God that have been imprinted in my mind, are what keep me going in my hectic day to day schedule.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

#DearYoungerMe

Dear 17 year old me,

          
          You may not know this yet, but your life is about to change drastically. By this point, you're more than likely starting your second semester of your senior year and you are fantasizing about what it'll be like crossing that stage, getting your diploma, and committing to your college of choice. You're proud of yourself, and you have good reason to be! You've given your all these past 12 years, made a lot of memories, and you have left a legacy worth claiming.

           I know it's easy to get carried away with all the hype surrounding your graduation, but I implore you to slow down. You read me right, slow down. Stop for a second, look around, appreciate those people that are around you. Hang out with your childhood friends (most of whom have probably committed to another college by now) as much as you can because you probably won't see them much anymore, if ever again. Tell your parents you love them. They go out of their way day in and day out to provide you with the means for success, all while showering you with praises of affirmation. Listen to those who have gone before you; seek out guidance from older friends, parents, or mentors that have recently left college or are in college currently; they will be the ones that let you know what to bring into your dorm to make it feel like home. Lastly, slow down and smile. It's easy to get overwhelmed with all of these life-altering decisions being thrust upon you at once. Have faith in God and in yourself; everything will work out for the best.

            I'm excited to see what the future has in store for us. Already, so much has happened in our life, but you've rolled with the punches and made the most of every situation. Don't worry too much; life is a rollercoaster and we are just here for the ride. 


Sincerely,
Me

Monday, March 27, 2017

#BookWorm

*SPOILER ALERT*
My favorite book series is the "Tunnels" series written by Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams from the UK. This series follows a young Will, son of an estranged archaeologist, whose life is thrown upside down when he discovers a hidden society underground. Imagine a tiny town with a city hall, police station, and pub inside of a large cavern illuminated by lanterns. These people have strict codes of conduct that prohibit any interaction with the topsoilers, which explains why they have not been found out by popular media. The 'villain' in this plot is a group called the Styx. The Styx can best be described as a former SS Nazi officer who now works for the men in black. The Styx, we come to find out in later books, are so powerful that they control the entire underworld as well as the world we live in. I'll leave this detail for you to discover: you'll never guess who the leader of the Styx is! This book keeps you guessing from page to page, and though Will discovers layer upon layer of new interesting worlds, the authors somehow tie it all together in the end. I recommend this series to anyone who appreciates mystery, action, romance, and history. They better make a movie!!! #thenextHarryPotter

Monday, March 20, 2017

#CollegeHack

Let's cut to the chase; I've learned many things during my first two semesters that I would like to share with you all because I wish someone would have told me before I started!
1)Naps are your savior and your downfall. Naps keep you going throughout the week when coffee and the few hours of sleep you get at night don't quite cut it. The key, however, is to strategically place your naps. When to take a nap: you are done with classes for the day and you have no other obligations that demand your attention immediately. When not to take a nap: (MAJOR KEY) don't think 15 minute naps are a thing. They aren't. You will oversleep and sleep right through your class, and possibly the class after that. True story.
2)When someone offers to help you, let them!!! We are all on the same grind. When someone asks if there is anything they can do to help you or assist you, accept there offer; hopefully you will be able to reciprocate the gesture one day. There is no shame in admitting you need help. I, personally, would rather have less stress over the pride of knowing I did it all on my own any day.
3)When the professor says the homework is optional, what they really mean is you better do the homework because their tests are about to be harder than swimming up a waterfall.
4)The no cell phone policy in the classroom is for your benefit, not the teacher's. College classes make high school classrooms seem childish. A fitting analogy is as follows: imagine trying to drink every drop of water from the end of a fire hose on full power; welcome to college.
5)Yes, you have moved away from home and now live at college, but your parents are still very much in your life. Keep your relationship with them healthy and strong because they are the ones that will send you food and put money on your credit card and still love you even when you don't have as stellar of grades.
College is great, no denying that. Be sure to not overbook yourself, always do your homework, and do your best to leave a good impression with everyone you meet. You never know where help will come from!