Tagged: tips

Life Hacks: 4 Classes to Take During Spring Semester

By Shivani Patel, Staff Writer

Terriers, registration period is coming./PHOTO VIA WIkimedia Commons

In about a month or so, something important is happening.

That, my friends, would be registration.

I’m sure you all remember the excitement and disappointment of searching through all the classes, trying to find the right times and professors only to have all the spots taken by the time you registered. I feel your pain (fifth session orientation problems).

Here’s to hoping luck is on our side and that we don’t get 8 a.m. classes.

If you haven’t already seen it, there is a registration date and time based on the last number of your student I.D. Pro tip: have it memorized because you need it for so many forms (i.e. tests) and it is a pain to have to get your I.D. out every time.

I suppose someone out there really didn’t want me to get a good schedule, because I have the last time on the last day. Hopefully, you all get a better time!

As with before, don’t forget to plan your schedule beforehand so that you don’t waste precious minutes looking for classes right before your slot opens up.

As a reminder, freshmen get to start registering on Sunday, November 17!

Now, as freshmen, we usually get a bit of leeway when it comes to choosing classes. All you need is to complete credits for certain subjects; the choice in class is completely up to you. I talked to a few upperclassmen about what they would suggest, so here are a few classes you might consider taking:

1. Intro to Ethics – CAS PH 150 (4 credits)

If you need credits for philosophy, here’s a suggestion. Everyday, we perform actions that require a certain amount of thought behind them. This class deals with the morality behind those thoughts. For anyone wanting a more thought-provoking class, this will be it.

2. General Psychology – CAS PS101 (4 credits)

This is a good class to get credit for science and learn a bit more about the way humans work. It is useful for any major – be that journalism or business. Since it is general psychology, the work isn’t too intensive so you’ll get to focus more on the content than stress about the exams. This class usually has a discussion section, so plan accordingly. Many recommend taking the class with Caine, who is “very straightforward and explains concepts very clearly,” according to Kush Desai, a sophomore in CAS.

3. Magic, Science, and Religion – CAS RN 242 (4 credits)

This class usually seems to be a favorite among the students at BU. Like Intro to Ethics, this is an interesting class that makes you think outside of the box. Although magic, science and religion seem like three incredibly different topics, this class might just show you that they do have quite a few intersections and similarities.

4. Film Industry – COM FT304 (4 credits)

If you can manage to get approval for this class, go ahead and take it. If you’re iffy about the reliability of Film & TV major, this might help ease your mind. It marries both business and film into one class – the business behind the film industry. You get to learn about the inner workings about the industry, while still keeping to film.

If you have any other suggestions, comment below. I hope these have been helpful in your class hunting.

May the odds be ever in your favor.


It Ain’t Nice Getting Lice

By Sabrina Katz, Staff Writer

Lice can be a controllable issues as proved by Sabrina./PHOTO VIA Sabrina Katz

Lice can be a controllable issue, as proved by Sabrina./PHOTO VIA Sabrina Katz

In 10 years, you should look back to your first week as a freshman and remember the friends you made, the classes you began and the late-night trips to the laundry room. After all, starting off college confirms the idea that you are mature enough to move out of the house and not have to get told when to shower because you already know (that’s every day, people). But when that first week of school tests your abilities as a rookie adult, it may be difficult to rely only on yourself.

Especially when it comes to getting sick, or worse… getting lice. Dun dun duuuun! I remember the event vividly: On the Sunday night after the first week of classes, I went to the bathroom to check in the mirror and I saw them: two tiny, dirty black bugs crawling along my hairline. I did a double-take, because what the heck was that? Turns out, I had contracted lice.

I had never had lice before. I’d hoped to never, ever find a hotbed of little insects and eggs in my hair, but alas, my time of weakness had come.  All I could think was “Why me, Lord?” Unfortunately for me, my hair is long and super-thick, which meant that this whole process could take longer than usual.

As soon as I discovered them, I told my roommate, then my RA, and last, I called Student Health Services. The darn place was closed for the night, which meant I had to wait until the morning to get my scalp checked out.

In the meantime, my roommate and I took a lovely stroll down to CVS and hunted down a lice removal kit.  I knew that after I did the treatment, I’d feel much better knowing that most of these bugs would be gone. Back at the dorm. we started shampooing. 10 minutes in, we washed it out. Then came the comb: a plastic red handle with small, metal teeth aka the death contraption/torture devise for my minute enemies. I rinsed my hair with water and got all shower-capped up.

The next morning, I headed straight to SHS and met with a doctor. She was right: lice is not deadly or even that harmful. Sure, they are a real pain in the neck (pun intended) and you have to do extra loads of laundry, but it’s really nothing to be worried about.

The new few weeks were full of treatments, keeping my hair in a bun to prevent any accidental transfers and even put vinegar in my hair after every shower. I think the collection of treatment fumes from this incident is enough of a caution against having it again. Two weeks later, BAM! My third trip to the doctor proved that I was lice-free. I walked out of that patient room and even whipped my hair back and forth.

So that was my first month of college. Delightful, with an underlying tone of gross. If you are unfortunate enough to get lice while in college, here are some tips:

1. Don’t panic. Seriously. Take a breath before you take care of the problem and don’t make the situation a bigger deal than it is.

2. Call a doctor. You don’t have to handle this on your own and they can give you advice when it comes to treatments.

3. Call your mom (or dad). I called my mom on the first day when I found out. She was very sympathetic and she helped reassure me that I’d be okay. Plus, your parents probably want to hear from you that you got lice, and not from embarrassing pictures on Instagram (but those are cool too #licearentnice).

Mini-Survival Guide to BU

Students walk along Commonwealth Avenue near Marsh Plaza on campus. PHOTO BY SARAH FISHER/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF

Students walk along Commonwealth Avenue near Marsh Plaza on campus. PHOTO BY SARAH FISHER/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF

By Michelle Jay, Multimedia Editor @michelllelynn
and Samantha Wong, Blog Editor @samzwong

Congratulations on being admitted to BU! To ensure your survival, here are 10 tips that should make your life easier as a student.

1. Look out for crossing objects when you cross the street.

Yes, objects. Cars, bikes and Ts, oh my! Remember what you learned in kindergarten and look both ways.

2. Always check the weather online before leaving.

Don’t just look out your window. Looks can be deceiving. Always err on the side of caution since the weather can change at any moment. Welcome to Boston.

3. Timing is everything.

Whether it’s taking the BU Shuttle or T, trying to eat in the dining hall or grabbing Starbucks between classes, plan ahead. You’ll have a mostly empty (read: comfortably snug) bus or T, time to grab some food from the dining hall or swing through Starbucks AND be on time to class if you do. Waiting last minute or not planning ahead almost guarantees not getting food or caffeine or being that kid who’s ten minutes late to class.

Bonus tips for the T: If you are commuting from East Campus to West Campus or visa versa, know the prime T times. If you try to take the T inbound from West around 7:30 a.m., it can result in very uncomfortable situations (i.e.,  being squished in or not being able to get on because it’s too full then having to wait in the cold, rain or snow for the next one, which could take time). Same thing goes for taking the T outbound from East at 7:00 p.m.

If taking the T or MBTA bus is an everyday thing for you, consider saving both money and time digging around for change. Buy a Semester T Pass. The MBTA website lists $2.50 for every T ride and $2.00 for every bus ride with a Charlie Ticket (the paper card). If you have the Charlie Card (the plastic card), each ride ends up being 50 cents cheaper. But, having the Semester T Pass means unlimited hopping on and off during the semester and never having to remember to refill your card.

4. Be nice to the security guards.

They are your friends. Treat them with respect and they’ll remember you for it. Especially on the weekends.

5. Figure out what your eating habits are and then change your meal plan accordingly.

Keep in mind that Dominos, Papa John’s, Starbucks and Pinkberry take your dining points too. That’s basically saying free pizza, coffee and fro yo. That in ADDITION to the GSU which takes dining dollars anyhow.

The Citgo Sign is a Boston landmark, located in Kenmore Square. PHOTO BY SARAH FISHER/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF

The Citgo Sign is a Boston landmark, located in Kenmore Square. PHOTO BY SARAH FISHER/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF

6. CAS is a long building.

Use it to your advantage, especially when the weather doesn’t agree with what you’re wearing.

7. FitRec is not solely for the athletes.

Current students can go in and out of FitRec at their leisure when the gym is open. Not only is the gym huge but wonderfully equipped. Go abuse those gym privileges.

8. Follow BU offices and organizations on Twitter.

Nearly every college, department, organization and office at BU has a Twitter. Though you’ll get emails for important things (like classes being cancelled), following them means finding out more than that. They’ll tweet about activities happening, promotional offers going around (who doesn’t enjoy free ice cream or free Arizona?) and more. Some professors even post tips for exams on Twitter, but they’ll definitely let you know if that’s the case. Check out our handy Twitter list to get started.

9. Make smart decisions when exploring after-hours.

Being a young adult in a new place also comes with the tendency to explore the neighboring areas.With great power comes great responsibility. Make sure that if you’re unfamiliar with an area you’re with someone you trust and/or someone who knows where they’re going. Make sure that you have numbers you can call in case of an emergency (i.e, your RA, your roommate, your parents, etc.) There are also emergency numbers listed on the back of your student ID.

10. Get off campus and explore Boston!

You go to BOSTON University. Unlike a certain other college in Boston (er . . . Chestnut Hill), you are actually in the city. Take advantage of the convenience of living in a city that’s not too big but not too small; it’s just right. Need ideas? Check out the top 10 places freshman should do in Boston. Remember if you get lost, follow our North Star: the Citgo Sign.

Tips for a healthy holiday season

By Olivia DeFrances, Staff Writer


No need to be this guy! Moderation is key at holiday feasts / IMAGE VIA funnyjunk.com

So Thanksgiving has come and gone, and while stuffing your face seemed a good idea at the moment, you might have woken up from your food coma with just a twinge of regret. Well, here’ s the rub: you can still attend all of those holiday parties and eat healthy and in moderation, so you never have to deal with the 5 to 10 pounds that most people gain over the holiday season (and never shed—yes, it’s been proven). Here’s how to eat healthy during this holiday season without depriving yourself:

Eat appetizers, but go for the good ones:
Eating fruits or vegetables before your meal can curb overeating at meal time, which is an especially good thing given how rich many holiday meals are. Just don’t reach for chips and dip! Go for the veggies for the same satisfactory crunch. Or have some fruit from a fruit and cheese platter. Have just a chunk or two of cheese or a few tablespoons of hummus to score some extra protein that will help keep you satisfied so that you aren’t ravenous at meal time.

Know portion sizes:
Many people are clueless as to what a proper portion size is. For starchy sides such as mashed potatoes or rice pilaf, it’s half a cup, or about the size of your fist. For meats, most dieticians recommend a portion about the size of your palm, or roughly three to 4 ounces. Go heavy on the veggies, as long as you choose ones that aren’t swimming in butter. A healthy portion of vegetables should be about one cup. Use the plate eyeballing rule to keep your meal balanced: half of your plate should consist of fruits and vegetables, a quarter proteins and a quarter starchy foods like a roll and some potatoes.

If you’re hosting, find some ways to slim down your favorite dishes:
Instead of loading up your green beans with butter, saute them with a little bit of olive oil and lemon juice. Use fat free condensed milk when making your pumpkin pie. Sub low fat dairy for regular. Try a new dish that’s high in nutritional value—like mashed parsnip. It’s got the same comforting feel of mashed potatoes with about half the calories. Add interesting new spices that will be sure to wow your family and friends and your pallet—foods with new and unique flavors help us to process them better and feel full longer. Plus, you score bonus antioxidants. Try cinnamon or ginger in deserts or invade your spice cabinets for flavorful ways to dress up your main dishes. Spicy chipotle rubbed roast beef? Lemon pepper green beans? Cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla sweet potatoes? Yum. Cooking Light’s Holiday Page has more delicious and healthy recipes than you could ever want.

Watch your drinks:
Many people do not think about the calories that their drinks have. But an 8 ounce glass of soda can pack up to 120 calories. Those holiday lattes and hot chocolates can have up to 300. A standard 12 ounce beer has between 120 and 150, and a glass of wine 90 to 110. So limit yourself to one drink and go for water, or water down your drinks or have a lighter version. Normally diet versions of drinks aren’t recommended for daily life because of chemical additives that can negatively affect your health. While you should generally avoid these types of drinks, going for the diet coke if you know you’re having several glasses might be smarter at a party—it’s only one night. Better, have coffee or tea with low-fat milk and Splenda. Both have almost zero calories yet are warm and satisfying. Keep a few packets of sweetener on hand.

Ice skating

Stay festive and in shape by participating in wintertime activities / IMAGE VIA abetterbagofgroceries.com

Stick to a workout schedule, or at least work out in sneaky ways:
Sign up for a holiday fun run. It’s great motivation and nothing gets you feeling like a kid on Christmas more than running around in an elf costume. Go to dance parties. Dancing is one of the best calorie burning activities out there, and you won’t even notice you’re working out because you’re having so much fun on the floor. Schedule a cute winter date with your love interest. Ice skating or snow shoeing are both a good workout and exceptionally romantic. Bonus: cuddling with a hot mug of tea after.  Going holiday shopping? Park far away from the mall or walk to the nearest boutiques—you’ll get a work out and a fun day out. Make plans to meet up with a friend at the gym, and you’re way less likely to bail. Keep some fun winter outdoor gear on hand so you can never use the excuse that it’s too cold, or motivate yourself with a hot bath afterward. All of these are fun ways to keep in shape during this holiday season.

Let yourself indulge!:
If you pick one favorite food to indulge in, it will likely satisfy your cravings and keep you from loading up on all that food that’s good but not heavenly good later on. If you focus really hard on avoiding foods that you love, you’re likely to be thinking about them so much that you’ll break down at some point and just binge. Aqnd you’ll have worried so much about eating them that you don’t get the same satisfaction as you would have if you had just had what you wanted and been done with it.

The main idea of the holidays is to relax. So trust some basic common sense nutritional values, and everything else should turn out fine. Don’t obsess about food. Just keep a healthy balance in your life, and you will have a happy and successful holiday season.

How to stay safe while abroad

By Amira Francis (@Mircatfrancis), Staff Writer

We hear horror stories each year about students studying abroad. Whether you’re leaving home sweet home to pursue studies or just to get a taste of the world, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind when learning how to survive in an unfamiliar place.

As someone who backpacked alone around Ireland for three weeks this past summer, I can say with confidence that it is better to be safe than sorry. Always—especially in those foreign bars and clubs you know you’ll be at—stay on your guard. Here are a few major things you should keep your eye out for when exploring the land beyond America. Hopefully these tips will help you have a safe, fulfilling time abroad.

1. Keep a lookout for shady characters

Okay, okay, this one seems like a given. Of course you’re not going to walk past that large, muscular man with his hood up, stumbling through the streets at one in the morning. Common sense, right? And you should follow your common sense. If someone doesn’t look quite right to you, by all means, stay away. Sometimes, though, these shady characters can be a lot subtler. It could be the well-groomed, smooth-talking Italian man who turns out not to be the white knight you think he is. Or it could be the seemingly trustworthy Spanish saleswoman who you thought was kindly chatting you up to help a foreigner out. Hours later you can’t find your wallet, which leads to my second and third point.

2. Never put yourself in a situation where you are alone with a stranger

A stranger could be someone that you met a day ago, a week ago or even a month ago. For the purpose of playing it safe, it’s better to stay in the public eye. If you want to go on a date with the dashing English guy you just met, stick to restaurants to start with. (And watch your drink!) If that beautiful girl wants to show you some place that all the other tourists haven’t seen yet, politely suggest somewhere a little more familiar. If you do choose to go somewhere alone with a person you have just met, which could happen in a spur-of-the-moment surge of adventure, at the very least let a friend know where you’re going and who you’re going with.

3. Keep your money and your passport close

A study abroad nightmare is a lost passport. Keep it in the most secure place you can think of, like in that safe pocket on the inside of your purse. I met an Australian man who even kept a padlock on the zipper of his backpack. The same kind of thing goes for money. Keep an eye on your wallet. It’s tough enough recovering a lost wallet in Boston. I can’t imagine doing the same successfully in a foreign land.

4. Follow your gut

If you have a bad feeling about something, don’t do it. If your gut is telling you not to trust someone, don’t trust him or her. Your intuition is wise, so make sure you learn to listen to it while traveling abroad. Err on the safe side and, by the end of your trip, you won’t regret it.