Vector Eboard’s Advice to First-Year Students

Vector Eboard’s Advice to First-Year Students

Sandra Raju 

Hello Class of 2025! I am a senior biomedical engineering student minoring in Chemistry. I understand that the past year has brought about some changes to campus, but that will not prevent you from enjoying the next four years here.  

Join a Club! 

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and give different clubs a try — I wouldn’t be a part of the newspaper if I hadn’t! You could learn a new skill, gain more connections in your major or career field, earn volunteer hours and enter competitions through opportunities offered by the clubs on campus. An added bonus is that you’ll likely get free snacks at most of the meetings.  

Explore Newark! 

Whether you cross the street to explore the Rutgers Newark campus or are willing to be more adventurous and take the light rail to the Ironbound, there are plenty of hidden gems around the city. You might even find your go-to lunch place! I’d recommend Fresh Coast and Resa Grill for those days you want to switch it up from GDS.  

In the past three years, I have made many fond memories and met many creative, intelligent and talented individuals on this campus. I can guarantee that by taking some of my advice, as well as the advice of my fellow Eboard members, you will also have a great time here. 

Yukthi Sangoi 

Hey, first-years! As a sophomore mathematical sciences student, I can’t speak too much about the social or tangible parts of the college experience, but I can give a suggestion regarding academics that I’ve gathered in the past year.  

I think the biggest tip I’ve learned is to develop connections with classmates. You don’t have to necessarily be friends or talk to them every day, but having a few classmates’ contacts helps alleviate the stress of making sure you note down every single detail in class lectures. If the professor takes a longer time to respond about homework assignments, quizzes, exams, or anything else from class, you can easily reach out to a classmate and get the notes or information needed. Additionally, having more than one perspective can help you solve problems with an easier method or give you another strong point for that essay you’re writing! 

I’m not too much of an extrovert, but meeting people and getting guidance from them can go a long way, and there are lots of people willing to genuinely help you on your journey for the next few years at NJIT! I hope you all have a great time here and join The Vector to meet some cool people :) 

Nick Arango 

Hi first-years – I’m glad you made it and hope the following school year is as exciting as possible. As a fourth-year architecture student and executive editor of The Vector, I’ve managed to learn a thing or two about enjoying my time at NJIT.  

First things first, join a club. The usual complaint at NJIT is that there isn’t enough to do on campus, but you can fix that simply by joining a club. There’s archery if you want to shoot some arrows or an art club if you love to draw. If writing is your medium, then submit a piece for The Vector. 

Also be sure you make friends. It might be easier for some of you than others but at least try to have one friend in each class. They’ll make that 8:30 am class somewhat enjoyable or if you’re an archi, you’ll find that 2:00 a.m. studio grind really fun. 

Lastly, Newark is actually a pretty dope city. Explore it. Branch Brook has more cherry blossoms than DC, and the Ironbound has such great food. Make sure to visit Black Swan Espresso for the best coffee in the city. 

Karim Gueye 

Hey all, I’m a senior computer scientist and The Vector’s current Business Manager. My advice for first-years? Fail a lot and fail as early as possible – but make sure to pass your courses. College sits at the end of childhood and the brink of adulthood. It’s the twilight period of your life when you aren’t bound by your family or your own personal responsibilities. 

The best way to respect this sliver of life is to drive straight out of your comfort zone and into a tree. Make a fool out of yourself trying to flirt with a classmate. Run for an Eboard position that you’re underqualified for. Walk up to a total stranger at GDS and have the worst conversation of your nascent little life. Every single success in your life is built on the foundation of every preceding failure. You need to build your foundations early if you want to leave NJIT as a mature adult. 

Nick Merlino 

Hey everyone! I’m a CS major and the Web and Multimedia Editor at The Vector! My advice to new students would definitely be to utilize the full array of student resources available to us. I often hear of students who do not immediately grasp the teaching style of their professors (especially in some of the harder classes like Calculus) and quickly write off the course for the rest of the semester, opting to take it again in the future. I think that while the professors are great resources, the door of their classrooms is not where learning has to end. Places like the Math and Physics tutoring centers, ACM tutoring (I am personally biased towards CS) and more have really awesome people who are willing to help teach just about anyone. These centers can be life savers when taking difficult classes, and they allow students to learn in more intimate settings. They’re great resources that I think are underutilized. That’s all, so good luck in the upcoming semester! :) 

Ethan O’Malley 

My advice to any incoming Freshman students would first be to not plan too much. Your interests and ambitions are likely going to change quite a bit over the course of this year, and you will have plenty of time to pursue any direction that you end up pointing towards. While having a plan can give your life structure and ease anxiety, if you stick to anything too vehemently, you may end up resenting all the potential opportunities that you cast to the wayside. 

My second piece of advice is a bit ill-timed with the delta variant but will become truer as vaccination rates increase throughout the year. That advice would be to take advantage of the city. We live pretty close to a lot of restaurants, museums, concert halls and other venues both in New Jersey and New York. I feel like a lot of my best NJIT memories involved going out with friends to some restaurant in NYC or Jersey City. Make sure to make the most of that. 

In any case I wish you the best of luck and a fun first semester. 

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Nicholas Merlino

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