I think one of the things I appreciate most about Christopher Newport is how there’s a huge emphasis on no student left behind. No matter what academic or extracurricular program/organization you’re a part of, there’s always someone pushing to ensure you are successful. Personally, I genuinely don’t know how I could be as good of a student as I am if I had chosen any other university.
Of course, as a Captain, your biggest cheerleader is your core adviser. This is someone who you’ll meet during your first semester of freshman year and be in contact with for the duration of your stay at Christopher Newport. You’ll definitely see him or her once a semester to register for classes, but you’re free and definitely encouraged to visit more often. They know A LOT about Christopher Newport and your major, so they’re an essential resource to ensuring your graduation.
In the President’s Leadership Program (PLP), every year you are paired with a new adviser who you’ll meet with, similarly, once a semester or more if you choose. PLP is one of our most important programs at Christopher Newport and it involves a lot of work. So, it’s great to have a personal connection with a professional who is actively working with you to make sure you’re on track. There’s similar roles in just about every other organization on campus; there’s always someone to reach out to for help.
There are plenty of centers and offices on campus where you can go for help as well, and they absolutely give amazing advice. Though, at Christopher Newport, an emphasis is placed on the individual. We are a small community, and so we want to ensure that every student has those important one on one interactions that let them know how much they are valued. At Christopher Newport, I never doubt for a second that my attendance is not only acknowledged, but appreciated.
It’s that time of the year again, it’s time for Campus Activities Board’s, or, “CAB’s” seasonal festival! For December, of course, it was winter fest and it was so much fun. I took a look at my group chat and saw a lot of my friends were about to head over, and I knew I had to join in.
We enjoyed the theme dinner at Regattas before heading to the Trible Plaza where the event was held. After stuffing ourselves with plenty of holiday-themed deliciousness, we were ready to be entertained for awhile. When we walked outside, I couldn’t believe it was snowing. Turns out, I was right to be surprised because, well, it wasn’t snowing. CAB really pulled out all the stops for this event because they had a bubble machine going that, oddly, gave a really cool snow effect somehow. The fun didn’t stop there. There was also imitation ice skating and snowboarding simulation that provided tons of laughs for my friends and I. I think the highlight might have been the photo booth though, everyone took tons of pictures with their friends and significant others.
With finals coming up next week, this was the perfect way to unwind one more time before the last big hurdle before break. It’s going to be a long week, but once it’s over I can’t wait to get back on campus and do it all over again!
I love Christopher Newport; this place is awesome. However, one thing about our university that makes me a bit sad is the fact that most students come from northern Virginia (NoVA, as they call it) or the Richmond area. There are fewer people like me from the nearby Hampton Roads area who go here.
But that’s about to change. About two weeks ago, CNU announced the Community Captains Program, which is really exciting if you live in Newport News. The Community Captains Program helps up to 75 qualified students from the Newport News area receive admission to the university. This program is open to first-generation college students, as well as those who qualify for free or reduced lunch.
That’s pretty awesome if you ask me. I love all my fellow Captains now, so it makes me really happy to know that I can share the name Captain with more people, people who grew up in my neck of the woods. In addition, a lot of these captains will be first-generation college students, like me! It’s really great that we are putting in the effort to get more people involved in college education, and this program really says a lot about how much our university cares about the Newport News community that hosts us.
The Community Captains program will do so much good for our university. The Newport News area is very diverse, as is most of Hampton Roads, and by having this program in place, we can not only give back to the community and help future college students find their ways, but we can also increase diversity and continue growing our university.
Within each educational department here at Christopher Newport, there is some variation of a signature lecture program. For students like me in the Luter School of Business, we have the advantageous opportunity to attend a weekly lecture from business professionals. Topics covered in the lectures include: how to network, how to conduct a professional interview, and what everyday business looks like for marketers, accountants, managers, data scientists, etc. To top it all off, the lecture series, properly named Slice of Business Life, has free pizza!
There are a wide variety of topics covered by many business types at Slice of Business Life, from small, local business to much larger companies. This means that there is at least one lecture each semester that will interest each Luter School student, if not more. For me, as a marketing major, I was excited to attend the lecture from Snow Companies, a full-service advertising agency based in Williamsburg. I learned about how Snow Companies uses compelling patient stories to effectively market for pharmaceutical companies, and how they build relationships with their clients and their patient ambassadors, who share their stories with the world. Snow Companies quickly became a company that I see myself working at once I graduate in the spring.
Weeks prior to the lecture, my marketing professor, Dr. Lisa Spiller, worked with Adam Duncan, the Luter School Director of Outreach, to arrange a networking opportunity with Snow Companies after the Slice of Business Life presentation. This unique opportunity was held in the new Gregory P. Klich Alumni House, where a few students who registered for the event sat around a warm fireplace and helped themselves to cookies and coffee while discussing the company further with the representatives of Snow Companies. Afterwards, I received a personal invitation to visit Snow Companies in Williamsburg to take a tour and see for myself how the company operates. I have to give thanks to the Luter School of Business for wanting to provide its students opportunities such as these. This amazing opportunity to network with an advertising agency, through both the Slice of Business Life and the reception afterwards, is invaluable to me.
University Chorale just gave our last concert of the semester. It was my first-ever Holiday Happening. Holiday Happening is an annual concert performed by the Music Department and celebrates the holiday season. This year, like every year, the concert was sold out and we had a blast.
We sang a lot of familiar pieces at the concert, such as “Sleigh Ride,” “Christmas Festival,” and “Auld Lang Syne”. One song that was particularly noteworthy was “Let There Be Peace on Earth,” which a lot of the parents and grandparents in the crowd were happy to hear, and they all sang along with us.
We had a guest narrator, none other than Santa Claus himself, which was a great time. He must have brought some Christmas magic with him because, during our last song, confetti and snow started to rain down from the ceiling in the Diamonstein Concert Hall. It was truly magical.
Holiday Happening was such a success, and I am really proud to be a member of the University Chorale. I know this was just the first of many, and I am definitely looking forward to the next one! With the semester winding down, and finals on the horizon, It’s nice to just look back and reminisce on something wholly positive.
Having an on campus job and simultaneously managing your academics is actually very achievable at Christopher Newport. I first started working at the media center in the library second semester freshman year. I applied through a resource online called Handshake, which is run by the Center for Career Planning (CCP) and makes it easy to apply to on-campus jobs. Each week they advertise new positions available to students that range from jobs to internships.
Once I found the job I visited the CCP and they helped me build a professional resume. I submitted the application right away and was exhilarated when I got an email back asking when I would be available for an interview. I informed the CCP of my good news and they helped break my nerves by doing practice interviews and provided feedback as to how I could present myself effectively. By the time I went into the job interview, I was feeling confident and prepared.
My boss is extremely understanding and always allows his students to put academics first. If I have an academic event to attend, and it conflicts with my hours, I am expected to seek another to cover my shift, but if no one is available he is willing to cover the time for me. I have full freedom of making my schedule at the beginning of each semester based on my classes and preferences.
I have to go through some training on equipment pretty frequently and know how to shelve items, but other than that the job really isn’t too demanding. If I don’t have a patron to help I am allowed to do homework at the desk I manage or even listen to music. Not all jobs can allow this on campus, but based on your needs and desires the university will have opportunities that allow you to be successful.
With the fall semester quickly drawing to a close, I can’t help but get excited for the spring! This semester, I worked very diligently to raise my GPA and continue to be active on campus. However, if I’m being honest, I didn’t set any specific goals or have a tangible plan in place. That’s something I definitely want to change for 2019 and these are some of the things I’ve come up with.
- Apply for the Campus Activities Board (CAB): CAB is an organization on campus that hosts weekly events for the Christopher Newport community. They’re always around and are very knowledgeable of what goes on on campus and I’d love to be a part of their extremely helpful community. They’re also heavily involved in Homecoming, which is a huge weekend for us. Some of their other events include bingo, movies, games and even fully fledged festivals on the Great Lawn!
- Create a Major Plan: At Christopher Newport, no one officially declares a major until the end of sophomore year. This is to ensure we all have enough time to carefully decide our academic and professional goals. Frankly, I’m not sure where I’d be if I had to declare my major during the first semester of my freshman year. I might have been a history major! Now, I’m focusing on pursuing communication and heavily considering a double major with theater. It’s a large undertaking as they don’t have much middle ground, so I want to make sure I’ve got everything in place so I can succeed and graduate on time.
- Volunteer at the SPCA: I’m a member of the SPCA Club on campus, but I haven’t been very active at the actual SPCA animal shelter in our area. I’d love to start going on a regular basis and ensure that I’m doing my part to help the local animal community.
These are all such exciting opportunities. I can hardly wait for next semester when I can reach these goals and delve even deeper into the Christopher Newport community!
One thing that I enjoy most about having so many types of organizations at Christopher Newport is all of the activities and events that each organization holds. The Alpha Phi chapter at Christopher Newport has an annual macaroni and cheese event, the Zeta Tau Alpha chapter has a yearly male pageant and the Campus Activities Board holds more events than I can count! One of the most recent events that I attended was A Fair Trade Fashion Show hosted by the International Justice Mission. This is my first time attending this yearly show, and, oh boy, have I been missing out!
The purpose of the fashion show is not only to entertain, but to enlighten. The beginning of the event is more of a speaker event, in which two members of the International Justice Mission here on campus speak on the issues of human trafficking. I learned so much about how slavery still exists in many countries around the world, which brands of clothing are ethically made, and what are the requirements for a brand to become fair trade certified. I was also exposed to new ideas on how to decrease my environmental footprint when it comes to buying and disposing of clothing, something important to me.
After the educational portion was the actual fashion show, the highlight of the night. Students representing many organizations on campus walked in the fashion show flaunting their ethically made clothing in many different fashions. They all sure looked fabulous! One of my friends, representing Hypnotic Control, the hip-hop dance group on campus that I am involved in, was walking in the show wearing ethically made pajamas! Also, at the event were several booths of ethically made clothing and accessories created by local companies, as well as fair trade certified hot chocolate! With the large turnout and the smiles on everyone’s face in the audience, I would say that the Fair Trade Fashion Show was a huge hit!
I’m very happy to have been elected to be the public relations chair of Psi Upsilon at Christopher Newport. It was a position that had interested since before I was even initiated so I’m very excited to finally have it.
As the public relations chair, it’s my job to run all of our social media accounts, including Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. In addition, I keep all of our alumni up to date with a newsletter that lists all of our accomplishments and initiatives. It’s a formidable undertaking, and I’ve already had to do some work! As soon as I received the role, I started doing some graphic design for a few Instagram posts. Art has never been my strong-suit, but thanks to the previous public relations chair I received a lot of great advice that helped me out.
This is right in my wheelhouse. As a communication major, I love, well, communicating. I’ve only been here for a year and a half, and I can’t attest enough to just how much being at Christopher Newport enhances my education. I’ve received a job as an editor for My Life as a Captain, elected to be public relations chair, and had the chance to attend countless communications workshops and speaker events. At Christopher Newport, it’s so much more than going to class. There’s opportunity around every corner and all of it makes your degree that much more worthwhile. I’m so grateful to be a Captain.
I just returned from Richmond where I attended my fraternity brother’s wedding. He graduated last year and invited a bunch of Christopher Newport current and former students for his nuptials. It was my first wedding that I was invited to personally, as opposed to simply by extension through my parents. It was a very intimate and sentimental ceremony. I found myself and a lot of my brothers’ heartstrings being pulled a little too much, but that’s OK!
I met the groom a few years ago, and I can’t believe now I’ve attended his wedding. College really is the middle ground in between being a child and becoming an adult. I mean, it wasn’t long ago he and I were hanging out in our friends’ dorm room, sitting around playing video games. I think those are my favorite memories with him, just relaxing with our friends and enjoying one another’s company. It’s crazy to think that from such casual friendship can evolve a much deeper and meaningful bond that will last a lifetime. Watching his relationship blossom with his wife has been one of the most rewarding and important experiences I’ve had the privilege to live.
I don’t know where I’d be if I never came to Christopher Newport and never had the opportunity to make the relationships I have. This was my first wedding, but I know that there are so many more down the road (including my own)! College isn’t just a place to learn, it’s a place to grow. And at Christopher Newport, we grow alongside one another, sharing in education and honor all the way through. The relationships I’ve made on this campus are beyond substantial and are something I will hold dear for the rest of my days. I know that these bonds will not break after graduation and that many of the friends in my life today will continue to be in my life for years to come. I can’t wait, and I thank Christopher Newport for the opportunities it’s given my friends and I to share.