Hi! I’m Mary Clay and I’ll be doing video blogs this year! I decided to remake an old video and also introduce myself to those of you that don’t know who I am. Check back each week for more videos!
Expanding our horizons past the traditional comforts of Christopher Newport University is important to making lasting memories during our time in college.
I’m a political science and communication double major and a digital humanities minor. One thing I personally enjoy doing here at CNU is volunteering with and working for political campaigns. Not only is this a great way to expose yourself to politics and boost your resume … it’s also a great way to get to know your community. I spent my freshman fall semester knocking on the doors of homes in the surrounding neighborhoods of Christopher Newport. This was great way to learn about what was in our immediate community – what roads led to what so I could avoid traffic jams on Warwick Boulevard, and what areas were the best to go jogging in. It was also a great way to catch a break from studying while really getting to know the area I was now living in.
Now as a junior I’m expanding my surroundings and working with a candidate in the Norfolk/Virginia Beach area. We go to school in an area that is very unique. With beaches as close as FIVE minutes from campus, why not go out and explore! I want to be able to think back to my college days as days that, yes, I learned and expanded my knowledge. But I also want to have memories of going to that really good pizza place on Main that only cost a dollar a slice, or that one time I got an impromptu surf lesson over on Shore Drive from a local. I think going out into the community really opens up opportunities for making those memories.
Now you may be like, OK cool, but I’m not political, I don’t want to go door knock some stranger’s house. OK, OK, you don’t have to. There are plenty of other ways to get out into the community. Look into volunteering at places that cater to your interests. A great co-op was created last year where students take left-over food from the dining halls to shelters; this is an awesome way to get to know Newport News while also being a part of something bigger than yourself. Love animals? There are plenty of shelters in our area that are looking for volunteer help to keep up with shelter demands. Don’t have a car but love the arts? Look into working for the Ferguson Center or even taking a short walk over to the Peninsula Fine Arts Center. These are just a few ways to get out of the CNU bubble, or explore within it, too!
Get out and explore. Four years may seem like a long time, but from someone with only three more semesters—time flies. No one wants to think back on the glory of their college days and have nothing to remember. Take advantage of all the cool opportunities Christopher Newport brings to campus and make sure to make Newport News your home.
Einstein’s is one of the places to hang out on campus.
But, you might say, aren’t there many places like that on campus?
Well, yeah. Of course there are. But Einstein’s has become one of my favorite spots to meet up with friends over my years here, and I’ll tell you why:
- Abundance of food and drink. Most people head to Einstein’s for the coffee, but if you’re a college student unhindered by a coffee obsession, there are plenty of things on the menu to check out! My personal go-to drink: passion tea lemonade with a shot of peach. Also, the bagel sandwiches and pizzas are the perfect break when you’re holed up studying in the library!
- Tables AND comfy chairs. Group projects, with computers and notebooks, almost require a table – Einstein’s has them. Catching up with that friend from last semester? Snag some of the leather chairs and you’re set to sit.
- Location, location, location. Often, your friends/group project members/random other people you need to meet live in a few different residence halls (or even off campus). Einstein’s provides a central place for everyone to gather, plus, it’s close to parking lots and the Trible Plaza.
You may not get that much work done in Einstein’s (sometimes it gets a little noisy), but you’ll enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and constant scent of coffee beans. What could be better?
Do you ever end up with a free evening or afternoon and can’t think of anything to do around campus? Try geocaching! (It’s not as weird as it sounds)
My roommate and I had plans to see a movie this weekend, but when we got to the theater, we were told our showing was sold out. We headed back to the car, stumped on what to do on a rainy Saturday evening. Knowing we weren’t hungry or in the mood for a crafting-palooza, we shot ideas back and forth until we landed on an activity that we had only heard stories about.
“What about geocaching? It looks fun on the Internet.”
“You mean that thing where you look for little hidden boxes?”
And thus, our geocaching evening began. The activity has appeared in many different forms but exists today as a worldwide game where players search for containers given certain GPS coordinates. Once the cache is found, the players sign the logbook inside and return the cache to its hiding place. Apparently, the geocaching community is large, and the number of caches a reasonable distance from CNU is in the hundreds. We checked the geocaching website and picked one of the closest ones we could find, plugged the latitude and longitude coordinates into our GPS and headed off!
We arrived at our location (a mostly empty parking lot) and began poking around for any signs of a “cache.” As beginners, it took us a while to get the hang of what we were looking for – not to mention it didn’t help that Hurricane Joaquin was rolling in. After rummaging through some mulch and reevaluating our directions many times, we were successful!
So, if you’re looking for something new to do in Hampton Roads, I encourage you to try geocaching. What college student doesn’t love a good treasure hunt?