Archive for the ‘onBeauty’ Category

Student Foodie: Just Salad Serves Up Salads and Student Discounts at Their NYU Location

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016

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When searching for a perfectly fresh and filling salad, NYU students need not look much farther than Just Salad, an appropriately named clean and healthy cafeteria-esque salad and smoothie spot.

Nestled in the heart of the NYU campus on 8th Street between Broadway and University, Just Salad chops up hearty and healthy salads with a variety of choices and seasonal options (so you know it’s fresh), all locally sourced and organic.

With  locations all over the City, Just Salad just celebrated its 10-year anniversary in May and is expanding to Chicago. Derrick Moore, the manager of the 8th street location, hopes to make this store the NYU students’ healthy haven and says he is already planning specials for NYU students, such as a promotion for Freshman Welcome Week.

“One of our bigger focal points is serving students,” Moore said.

Even without the special promotion, Just Salad is already the perfect place for health-conscious students – most of their salads are about $10 and so hearty that they are the perfect post-workout meal. You can also buy a reusable salad bowl for just $1 and save the rest of your salad for later. If you end up going with the reusable bowl, reuse it at the store and you’ll get a free cheese or two free “essentials” on your next custom salad.

Most of the items in your salad are grown locally by farmers in the NYC vicinity. Just Salad also has rotating seasonal salads four times a year. One of their summer seasonals is the “Tulum Getaway” with crunchy tortilla chips and pumpkin seeds, smooth avocado, fresh corn and beans atop romaine. The salad has a little kick, thanks to the smoky poblano ranch dressing, and is tasty and filling. If you’re looking for something more classic, “The California” is a great, healthful option with chicken, egg whites, avocado and some surprising and mouth-watering roasted almonds. If you want to indulge a little, you can still grab a coke or snapple and a bag of chips or go the healthy route with a smoothie at the smoothie bar.

Photo by Tamar Lapin

Photo by Tamar Lapin

 Just Salad also has a culture of promoting health outside of the store. Each location has a    nutrition and fitness ambassador customers can contact for a FREE consultation or personal training session. You’ll find the name and contact info of your local ambassador pinned to a very student-friendly bulletin board right by the door.

Even Moore, the 8th Street location manager, said that Just Salad helped him get in shape and feel healthy. Since he started working there three years ago, he lost 94 pounds by taking advantage of the free personal training sessions and by being inspired to eat healthy, thanks to Just Salad’s creative menu. Moore said he’d never really taken advantage of free meals at his other restaurant jobs but that Just Salad’s offerings like the “Buffalo Kale Caesar,” the inspired dressings and the avocado smoothie opened his eyes and palate when it came to healthy, tasty food.

“I feel clean. I feel like I’m eating clean,” he said.

With their monthly specials and the loyalty rewards program on their app, Just Salad strongly believes in making eating healthy fun and affordable. It’s the perfect, well-priced refueling station in the heart of NYU.

If you choose to hang out at this clean and airy restaurant, with its lime green walls and beige beachwood panels, make sure to bring a sweater because the A.C is pumping. And stop by next month for the smoothie special happy hour, with $1 smoothies between 3 and 6 pm.

By Tamar Lapin

Enticed by Just Salad and looking for an extra student deal? Check out this Campus Clipper coupon here:


For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the NYC Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful ebooks, we give them a platform to teach others. Follow each new blog post to read a chapter of our various books and to learn how the Campus Clipper can help you follow your dreams!

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Why You Should Study Abroad: Leah Zarra, London, UK

Monday, October 27th, 2014


Leah Zarra posing in front of a sign for the famous Abbey Road.

Leah Zarra posing in front of a sign for the famous Abbey Road.


“I just loved being so independent and being totally immersed in another city,” says Leah Zarra, 22, a Texas native and Drew University graduate.

Zarra participated in a semester-long study abroad program to London through her New Jersey college back in the fall of 2012. “I couldn’t wait to experience another culture,” she says, “even though London isn’t the first to jump to mind when you think ‘foreign’.”

According to Zarra, the full semester trip to London cost the same amount as a regular, on-campus semester. The trip included: tuition, housing in a flat with other people from her college, and a 2-zone Oyster card—similar to a Metrocard, allowing Zarra unlimited access to the Tube (subway) within specified zones.

When it came to financial resources to help fund her trip, Zarra had it covered.

“I had an annual Dean’s award scholarship all through college, so this carried over to my semester abroad,” she explains.

Zarra was able to take classes such as London Literature, British Political Drama, Modern British History and a required colloquium course. She earned 16 credits studying abroad—more credits than she would have earned in one semester staying on campus in the States.

Zarra and her friends riding the Tube.

Zarra and her friends riding the Tube. (Zarra is second from the right.)

When it came to saving money while abroad, Zarra made sure to budget wisely.

“As college students, we all try to be frugal, so we kept our eyes out for free food and events,” she says referring to her study abroad group. “If you’re looking, they’re easy to find. One professor told us about a group of Hare Krishna monks that served free curry every day. Food is a big one to save on.”

When asked if she would recommend her study abroad program to someone else, Zarra responded with a resounding “yes!”

“I learned so much, and not just in the classroom,” she says. “We didn’t just read famous British authors; our professors took us on walking tours around the city to see where Great Expectations took place, [or] where Virginia Woolf walked every day. As cliché as it sounds, I truly found a piece of myself there.”

Sometimes students take out some loans to study abroad and Zarra believes it’s absolutely worth it.

“Go into it with a positive attitude, and appreciate everything you see,” she says. “Make an effort to appreciate the privileges you didn’t realize you had. You will never have another chance like this.”

The famous Big Ben and Westminster Abbey: one of the many pictures Zarra took on her trip.

The famous Big Ben and Westminster Abbey. One of the many photos Zarra took while on her trip.



-Sam Levitz is a graduate of Brooklyn College and went on the CUNY Study Abroad trip to China the summer of 2013. Follow her on Instagram:slevitz

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College Savings and Saving Space in Your Suitcase: What to Pack When Studying Abroad

Saturday, September 27th, 2014

When I fantasize about traveling it’s always the same: one neatly packed backpack with just the essentials. Unfortunately, I am not a light packer and so this is never the case. When it comes to studying abroad you want to make sure you’re properly prepared for whatever you may encounter on your trip. It’s never a good idea to assume that a foreign country has exactly what you’re looking for. Try to find college discounts for certain items before your trip and you can save yourself a lot of trouble once you’re there. So what if you’re labeled the “mom” of your trip? Being prepared is never a bad thing—and chances are your new friends will thank you.

Before your trip it’s important to at least attempt to learn the language of the country, or at least learn some key phrases. Rosetta Stone is a great option, but for those of us on a budget there are free smartphone apps readily available. Mindsnacks is a really helpful app I found before my trip to China that allowed me to start learning the language through a series of fun interactive games. If you upgrade to the full version for $5, you’ll get access to 1000 words and phrases, 9 unique games, and 50 lessons to master. This app is available in many different languages and the upgrade is definitely worth the money!

Mindsnacks is a free app that can be used to learn new languages.

Mindsnacks is a free app that can be used to learn new languages.

Do some research about the weather you’ll experience during the months you’ll be there and pack your clothes accordingly. You don’t want to be the one wearing sweaters in the heat or shorts in the snow. Make sure you have a solid stock of any medicines or vitamins you may take every day. Regular toiletries are an essential and it’s always handy to buy Tide-To-Go, packets of Downy or any other fabric soap just in case you need to do a wash at a moment’s notice.


Sometimes laundry gets expensive in a foreign country.


Check to see what banks are available in the country you’re going to. Many countries often have branches that are linked with Bank of America so if you don’t have an account, open one up. It’s free and you won’t have to pay fees every time you grab some cash from the ATMs. The China Construction Bank, found all over China, doesn’t charge any fees as long as you have a BoA card. You can easily close your BoA account once returning to America.

Other important items are charger adapters for your specific country of origin. The outlets in America are not the same in every country and you do not want to be that person with the hair straightener exploding in your hair!

Also, to stay in touch with family and friends during your trip, set up a Gmail, Skype, Viber, and Whatsapp accounts. These are free ways to connect with your loved ones through email, phone calls, video and text messaging all through WiFi. You don’t want mom to get a $356 dollar phone bill because you accidentally used your data while roaming, do you?

My group connects to the WiFi in our hotel in Hong Kong and immediately engross themselves in social media.

My group connects to the WiFi in our hotel in Hong Kong and immediately engross themselves in social media.

-Sam Levitz is a graduate of Brooklyn College and went on the CUNY Study Abroad trip to China the summer of 2013. Follow her on Instagram: slevitz

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Revealing Beautiful Skin at European Wax Center

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

I had my first wax experience with European Wax Center last week, and the whole process was a breeze.

Two days before my appointment, they called with a reminder and asked if I would still be able to attend, assuring me that if I had to reschedule, there would be no fee. Great service; I always appreciate the extra effort it takes to remind me of an appointment, just in case something has come up or I forgot to put it in my calendar.

The center is incredibly clean, the waiting area open and well decorated. The staff at the front desk was friendly and informative and didn’t pressure me into buying any products or packages. I was a few minutes early to my appointment so she let me know that my specialist would be out in a few moments and where the bathroom was if in case I needed it. The lobby is stocked with comfortable seating and a slew of magazines, but I didn’t even need to spend any time reading them because my specialist, Alix, was out right on time to begin my reservation.

Alix walked me through the different products she was using as she applied them to my skin. Though I’ve waxed before, she made me feel incredibly comfortable with the process. At European Wax Center, your skin is prepped with a serum that keeps the wax from sticking to your skin, which lessens the pain significantly. The wax used is actually made in house and the technicians allow it to dry entirely before pulling it off, which again, keeps it from sticking too much to skin and only adhering to your hair. And they never double-dip–huge plus! Alix gave me a few different breathing techniques that made the pain almost non-existent. It was, hands down, the least painful waxing I’ve ever experienced. When not walking me through the process, Alix was incredibly friendly and kept up a steady stream of conversation to keep me distracted from the (albeit minimal) pain. She did suggest one of their products to keep the hair regrowth at a minimum, but wasn’t pushy about the fact that I needed to buy it, just that exfoliation in general would do wonders for my skin.

Post-appointment payment was a breeze. We automatically scheduled a follow-up. There was again, refreshingly no pressure to buy a package deal of the body wash Alix suggested I purchase (though I did and I love it). There’s a handy chart at the desk for suggested tip amount broken down for each beauty procedure, and the option to leave tip in cash or by card.

As a student, your first wax at European Wax Center is on the house, and then after that, you can take advantage of the student wax pass, where you buy two treatments and get the third one free! No better deal is to be had in Manhattan.


Authentic Chinese Food at Spicy House

Saturday, June 14th, 2014

Although this recently opened restaurant is small and understated, the food is tasty and worth trying if you like Chinese food. No need to travel all the way down to Chinatown for your Chinese fix. Spicy House serves authentic Chinese cuisine and offers a varied menu with options that could please any palette. The interior, although sparsely decorated, is clean, and the white tablecloths add a nice touch. As is customary of Chinese restaurants, the menu offers many sharing dishes. Don’t be turned off by the restaurant name if you don’t eat spicy food, because they also offer a wide variety of non-spicy dishes.


My friend and I were greeted at the door and led to our table. The waitress was very friendly and let us know about the specialties and what was best on the menu. We decided on spicy beef tendon as a cold appetizer. The flavor was comparable to similar dishes that I have tried in China, and if you like spicy food it is an excellent option on the menu. Next we had shrimp with mixed vegetables. The ingredients tasted fresh, the seasoning was not overdone or too oily (which could be a concern when eating out at some Chinese restaurants), and the presentation was on point. This dish also came with bowls of rice, of which you can choose between white and brown. Last we had sautéed green beans, which was also very enjoyable.

The food was up to my expectations and the service was attentive as well, so overall I had a positive dinner experience. If you are looking for an authentic Chinese food experience, Spicy House is an easy stop tucked away at a convenient location on Third Avenue near Union Square. Also the prices are pretty reasonable, especially considering the quality of the food, so if you are a college student like me or just looking to get a yummy dinner without breaking the bank, definitely give this place a try.

Kristen Toms, New York University ’16

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Healthy Living to a Happy You

Saturday, June 7th, 2014

Sometimes in the hustle and bustle of city life, it can be easy to forget to make the time to take care of your body. But as is well documented in the science world and as I recently discovered through personal experience, regular exercise as well as a healthy diet can drastically improve your quality of life. It was fall semester of my sophomore year and as usual I found that the determination and drive that had powered the first few weeks of my university life was slowly dwindling as the days floated by. I would head directly back to my dorm room after classes and I would spend the majority of my time indoors, simultaneously watching Netflix, doing homework, and eating a plethora of junk food. The increasingly cold weather certainly wasn’t helping my willpower to go outside and get physically active, so I ended up spending a lot of time alone in my room. My roommate was essentially MIA and at times the loneliness was overpowering. I blamed everything from the city life to the weather, before finally realizing that my situation was no one’s fault but my own. After many weeks of feeling miserable and gaining several pounds, I realized that something needed to change. The first thing I did was throw away all the junk food, the chips, chocolate, and the gummy bears. I made a trip to Whole Foods and bought almost every kind of vegetable and fruit they had on the shelves, which I then forced myself to eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It was not easy and I found myself craving the sugary foods that I had become so used to before, but after the first couple weeks I realized that the new things I was eating felt better for my body and after that I hardly craved processed sugars at all, in fact the very thought of putting those things into my body revolted me. I signed up for three months of unlimited yoga classes and bought a pair of running shoes so I could jog along the river. After just one week of my new improved lifestyle I noticed some significant changes. Not only concerning the health of my body, but also the state of my mind. I was happier and more outgoing. I found myself more willing to participate in class discussions and to independently pursue my interests. Daily exercise and a clean diet helped me regain my confidence and be the person that I had intended to be when I first came into college as a freshman.

Kristen Toms, New York University ’16

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Flip Flop Shops: A West Coast Vibe Amidst a Frozen City

Sunday, December 8th, 2013

A West Coast Outpost

The message of Flip Flop Shops, located in Greenwich Village on 61 E 8th street, is  simple: free your toes.

While this can be taken literally, store manager Kyle Bremer likes to take a more philosophical approach: New Yorkers are usually rushing about from place to place, staring at their feet. Flip Flop Shops is there to provide a sort of west coast outpost with a vibe of free-spirited living, free of obligation, where they can let go of their tension and enjoy the atmosphere.

This atmosphere is readily apparent when entering Flip Flop Shops: a coconut machine fills the air with the scent of coconuts all day, the staff is in beach getup, and there are beach balls strewn about.

The point is to transport people from the frozen concrete in the middle of December to an environment where they would actually be using the flip flops.

Expert Service and Selection

Of course, in the summer, Flip Flop Shops gets more foot traffic with beach season and tourists coming in, but the vibe year round is great customer service. This means being attentive and running the business effectively while still being as laid back as possible with customers.

Since Flip Flop Shops sells only one type of footwear, employees need to know the products inside and out. Pick two pairs of flip flops off the shelves and the small, closely-knit team will be able to describe you their function and the differences between the two pairs.

Kyle notes that when your only business is flip flops, your knowledge must dictate this, as well as your inventory.

Flip Flop Shops caters to a wide range of customers, from someone who wants a pair for the gym to someone who’s traveling abroad to someone looking for orthotic-based flip flops. That means carrying everything from your basic rubber Havaianas to brands endorsed by the orthopedic association to provide arch support.

Kyle, a collegiate and high school runner, says that most flip flop wearers who have a lower foot arch land on the outside of their heel and as their foot rolls forward, it also rolls inward, causing the arch to collapse. This destabilizes your ankle and causes a lot of pain on the outside of your leg.

Kyle’s know-how stems from working at a specialized running store that specifically fit runners in the community, where he learned a good amount of biomechanical knowledge and how the feet work.

In the online shopping era, Amazon can, most of the time, offer something cheaper. The only difference between Flip Flop Shops and online retailers is customer service.

This is where Flip Flop Shop excels. If they don’t have a particular size in stock, they will special order it and give the customer a discount. If they see a customer who’s interested in something, they’ll give them a 10% coupon to make sure they come back.

Kyle recounts a story of a customer who was looking for a specialized style that Reef technically doesn’t manufacture anymore, so he spent two weeks working with Reef to see if they had any of those units being returned to them from other businesses. Finally, he found the flip flops. Every two days or so he called the customer and informed her of any updates. In the end, Kyle still gave her a discount.

A customer once reminisced that shopping at the store was like shopping in the late 50s and early 60s, simply because the employees were so attentive. Where in a regular shoe store, you’d pick out your own shoes, ask for a certain color, have a rep bring the pair and then vanish, Flip Flop Shops employees are fitting you and providing recommendations, not to mention asking how your day is going.

Kyle can tell you that the last customer is going to the Bahamas for the second time, that she was thinking of getting a pair of Havaianas to match her bathing suit but they hurt her feet so he set her up with a pair of Cobians, which are good for the water and have better arch support, and that she wanted a pair with a black top and brown base.

It’s something that allows you to connect with customer, more so than, “here it is, do you like it or not?” according to Kyle. Customers feel more comfortable purchasing something in store they can get $10-15 cheaper online because it’s worth it for the service they’d never get at an online retailer.

Military Origins

Dave Dequeljoe, owner of the Village location, has a great relationship with Kyle. Dave is a very laid back guy, as Kyle describes, which is surprising since he comes from a military background, taking the principles of being a serviceman relevant to a business and leaving out the principles that are not.

Specifically: whether you’re managing the store or the guy mopping up, do it 100%, because that’s when you can go home at the end of the day feeling fulfilled. Even if you’re emptying trash cans, if you’re doing your best, you can feel like you’re accomplishing something and that you’re part of a team.

How Will Flip Flop Shops Help Students?

Flip Flop Shops used to give all NYU students a discount on the inventory, but now they provide a 10% discount to students nationwide. So even if you’re coming up from USC, you’re still getting that discount.

In the spring, Flip Flop Shops will be doing a program where they will give students a few hundred business cards, with a number on the card corresponding to the person who’s giving them out, so when a referred student comes into the shop to buy some flip flops, not only do they get 10% off, the number on the card and the amount of the sale goes into an excel spreadsheet. At the end of the month, the student who gave the business card to his friend gets 10% of sales.

Flip Flop Shops understands that college is about having a good time and keeping your budget to a minimum, and if they can save you a few bucks here and there, that’s great.

Kyle believes more businesses should do this—if students are paying to better themselves and further their education, why not save them some money?


Aleksandr Smechov, Baruch College.

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A Healthy Way of Living at Lifethyme

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

I grew up around nature, farms and gardens, farmers’ markets, and signs that read “local” or “all-natural.” When I moved to New York City, I assumed that part of my life would come to a halt; you can’t exactly fit a dairy farm in Manhattan.

And then I found Lifethyme. Three blocks away from my college, stocked with products hailing from my hometown of Ithaca, NY, and sensibly priced for the broke college student that I am, Life Thyme was a win-win…win.


Organic, local veggies! Yum!

Opened in 1995, Lifethyme has made it their mission to create a complete, natural market, equipped with a juice bar, bakery, supplement counter, body care section, kitchen, and grocery store that delivers. “We wanted it to be entirely complete. We were one of the first; there are other health stores, but none just like us,” says Jason, owner of Lifethyme. And he isn’t kidding, the store has everything. Walk a few blocks and get all natural groceries, toiletries, dinner, and dessert all in one trip. They even have all natural chocolate, a fan favorite!

So much deliciousness!


The local organic movement was a big motivation. Products like veggies and dairy come from farms upstate and are brought down to this quaint, natural shop in Manhattan’s West Village. No wonder I felt a wave of nostalgia as I walked inside, greeted by organic sweet potatoes, organic Ithaca milk, and that unmistakable scent of fresh food, poorly replicated by the more expensive Whole Foods. I was hooked and I hadn’t even been upstairs yet.


Gotta love organic veggies!

Being in between two major colleges, The New School and NYU, Jason understands how hard it is to maintain a healthy, organic lifestyle on a budget, so he has one philosophy: “a store needs to be affordable for everyone, meeting the wants and needs of all economic classes.” That’s why the store is always trying to improve both product and price-wise. Each month promotional fliers are distributed with new deals and discounts, the salad bar is 50% off after 9PM, and everyday prices stay at an affordable rate.

Great already made food!


I explored, in awe of the quantity and variety of products. Upon walking in, I was met with the freshest of fruits and vegetables (organic apples happen to be my favorite), then I made it to some dairy products from my home sweet home, then to the prepared foods, stocked with raw-vegan, vegan, vegetarian, and even omnivorous food. Next I stared longingly at the baked goods: chocolate vegan cakes that made me want to forget about dinner. Making the full circle, I saw the grocery section and realized that I would never have to go anywhere else, as they had it all: cereal, bread, pasta, canned soup, canned vegetables, you name it. I was even able to try free samples from Garden of Life, a company that promotes raw and natural energizers and vitamins. Upstairs they had even more! Soap, shampoo, laundry detergent, candles, incense, yoga mats, make-up AND a seating area where you could eat your prepared food and rest your feet. Like I said, I was hooked.

Free samples and friendly faces!


Nothing is better than an organic apple!


Even better, Lifethyme is always looking for ways to get more involved with the community, to do more, and to improve themselves. For all of you interested students out there, Lifethyme wants you to be involved. Whether it’s through events or collaborations, the shop wants to improve their student base by including our generation in their mission for healthier living. Sounds pretty awesome if you ask me. Lifethyme cares about health in every sense of the word and when it’s only a short walk away, it seems pretty worth it.



Daniela Bizzell, Eugene Lang College, The New School University.

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A Look Inside Vada Spa and College Discounts for Students

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

First-time-spa-user here. I’m not really one to make a big fuss over nothing, even crazy college savings,  but I have to say– there are certain things you must try in life, and one of them is getting a professional massage. This is a level of pampering that will absolutely erase your bad day, and the Vada Spa employees go well out of their ways to make sure you leave feeling like royalty. I want to take a minute and describe my trip to you.

Vada Spa, located in downtown Manhattan, is committed to excellent service that is affordable and accessible to anyone. It has two floors: the nail salon on ground level and the hair salon and spa upstairs. When I walked in to make the appointment, I was greeted warmly at the front desk, and was even offered a glass of wine to sip on while I waited for massage. (I mean how classy is that? That’s what I mean when I say they go the extra mile.) I decided I’d get a manicure before my appointment, so I picked out a pale pink Essie color and took a seat at table right away. The woman who did my nails was extremely thorough when she was prepping them, and very neat with the polish itself. I learned that all of Vada Spa’s employees all had at least five years of experience before coming there, and anyone who’s ever gotten a messy manicure knows that this really makes a huge difference.

When I was finished drying my nails, it was time to get my massage. My masseuse came to meet me at the front desk. He introduced himself as Tibor and then escorted me to the spa on the second level. It looked as though there were about four or five separate massage rooms on this floor. My room was dimly lit as if by candlelight, and there was soft music playing in the background; it was easy to get comfortable there. The massage itself was one of the most relaxing experiences I’ve ever had, both mentally and physically. It’s funny how you have no idea how tense your muscles are until someone works out all the knots. I’d had backrubs before just from friends, but this is on a completely different level. By the end of it I was so relaxed that I didn’t want to get up– I couldn’t believe an hour had gone by!

This is one experience I’d like to repeat. Those of you who’ve had massages before, you know exactly what I mean! Those who haven’t? Well, you’ll just have to take a trip to Vada Spa!

Check out this college discount before going!


Laura DeFrancisci, Manhattan College. Check out my Blog!

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Mental Health Matters Too

Friday, August 9th, 2013

Whenever I tell an older person that I’m still in college, the one thing they always tell me with a glint of nostalgic desperation in their voice is that I should absolutely cherish my four years. Evidently, they fly by fast and then you’re unceremoniously kicked into the fabled “Real World” your parents are always lecturing you about.

And that’s because in some sense, the stereotypes about college are true: it is really, really fun. It may not be the booze filled sex-a-thon the movies make it out to be, but the random afternoons you spend spontaneously going to Central Park and getting into an impromptu boat race on the lake while a group of Harry Potter cosplayers yell Unforgivable Curses at you are not going to be soon forgotten.

However, there is a dark side to college that most of the time is swept under the rug and never mentioned. Underneath all of the fun is an incredible amount of stress: our finances (or usually the lack thereof), our roommate troubles, our relationship aches and pains, the ups and downs of our GPAs, and all the little things that come with newfound independence. It’s basically like if someone asked Atlas to do a quick Iron Man triathlon while still holding the entire world on his shoulders. No big deal, right?

The constant juggling gets to everyone at some point. Sometimes it’s a little thing that breaks you– one of my roommates broke down into hysterics because there was a mouse in our dorm. She had had an especially rough week, and that little mouse making her bin of sweaters into what she called his “mouse house” was the last straw for her.

Sometimes it’s a big thing that breaks you. Sometimes a person you thought you were in love with decides to call it quits. Sometimes someone in your family passes suddenly. Sometimes your health takes an unexpected turn for the worse. We don’t think about the possibility of these things happening to us because we’re young, and bad things don’t happen to young people. But they do happen, and they’re never easy to deal with.

With all these big scary possibilities of your independent life, there is one important piece of advice to remember that I happened to get from a pair of sunglasses I bought from Urban Outfitters: “It’s perfectly okay to admit that you’re not okay.” I know my cheap sunglasses weren’t the first to say it, but it rings true all the same. No one knows you better than you know you. You have to know when it’s time to pump the brakes and think about getting some help.

I know that nobody likes admitting that they need help, especially when it comes to our mental health, something we feel like we should have some modicum of control over since, you know, it is our own brains creating the problem. But sometimes you just have to admit that you can’t handle the weight of your own thoughts, or you run the risk of letting them consume you.

Believe me, I know how it feels to be a trapped in your own mind. It took me months to admit to someone that I needed help, because I was drowning in the daily pressures of my life. First it was just one of my friends, but she suggested I try therapy as an outlet. And when I say suggested, I mean she demanded that I call the NYU health center the next day and get myself an appointment.

Some people might think she was coming on too strong with the pro-therapy message, and I did too, at first. But she had been to an NYU counselor before when she was having a hard time, and her life had improved because of it. Thus she became therapy’s biggest proponent.

And you know what? She was right. I didn’t want to go at all; I considered running for it while I was staring at the grey walls of the counseling center, waiting for my appointed therapist to usher me into his office. But after it was over, I had a feeling of relief in my chest where I had previously felt only anxiety and stress for months. It was a no-judgment zone where I could talk about how I felt to someone who didn’t know anything about me except how strongly I agreed or disagreed with the questions they had made me answer on a questionnaire. He was kind and understanding, and, as an added bonus, he had a faint Irish accent that I found very soothing.

It may be stressful and out of your comfort zone to think about taking professional steps into improving your mental health, but being in college actually makes it easier for you to do so. NYU offers all of its students 10 free sessions of counseling, able to be used at any time during a student’s four years. They also have a private hotline open 24 hours a day for anyone who needs help. Every school has its own resources for its students to use; look into your school’s specific policies regarding counseling, and you’ll probably find that it will be relatively easy for you to get help.

As fiction author and very smart person John Green said, “It hurts because it mattered.” Maybe not everyone understands why something bothers you so much, but that doesn’t mean you should feel bad about feeling bad. It hurts because it mattered to you. It could be a mouse house or a bad grade on a paper, it doesn’t really matter; what does matter is whether or not you choose to help yourself and admit that you’re hurting.


Alex Ritter, NYU.

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