Is this farewell?

We have been tasked with writing our final blogs for the year, and those of us graduating or not returning to office have been asked to write farewell blogs.  This is a very sad day because the end of my time as an NC State Admissions intern is very quickly coming to an end.  There are so many things that I have done, so many amazing people I have met, and there is just so much love I have for this office.  Maybe some of you have followed me and seen it, but I truly have grown into a man thanks to this office.  

First I must thank Marina Offner, my first boss in admissions and someone who basically became my big sister.  She’s seen all facets that John Taylor has to offer: she’s seen me happy, she’s calmed me down in anger, she’s been with me while I cried and tried to figure out my life and she helped me learn about the man that I will be.  I love, appreciate and thank Marina everyday, not necessarily directly to her but subconsciously.  I do not know where I would be if Marina had not taken a chance on the freshman kid that was begging for a job in the admissions office.  There were plenty of times early where she could have thrown her hands in the air and given up on me, but she didn’t.  Marina, thank you.  

Friends, you don’t know how hard it is to write this blog.  I have avoided thinking about this being the end of my time in admissions and now that I have to think about it I can hardly keep my emotions together.  Think about it: since the second semester of my freshman year I have spent 10 hours minimum per week working in admissions, not including summer hours when I worked nearly full time.  You do the math, I have spent more time in Peele Hall than probably anywhere else on campus.  In this job I have gained plenty of office experience, I have had the opportunity to do speaking events that I have loved for years, I have had the opportunity to spread the involvement of the office, I have developed entirely new projects, and I have met thousands of people.  Every time someone pulls me away at an event to ask questions I get giddy.  I want to be asked questions because of how much I love the office and NC State.  I find myself in tears thinking about how I will spend my time next semester.  Sure, I’ll have plenty of time to focus entirely on school (Graduating next May WHOOP!) but I’ll miss the beautiful faces of Natalie, Rachel, Tia, Dana, Kia, Liz, Ryan, Tommy, Joyce, Taylor, Sharon, Lauren, Ashley, Joan, Stephanie, Judy, Marty, Jim, Roger, Ronnie, and the many more I have not mentioned.  Each one of you bring something new and special to my life.  You, the staff, are an essential part of why I kept returning to the office.  Even though some of you have left already, and the more and more that leave the more the office changes.  I have loved the change and the consistency of this office and I can’t thank you each enough for teaching me what you have.

To Rachel, Tia, and Natalie, you three collectively and individually now make this office mean so much to me after the departures of Kia, Marina and Sharon.  I cherish the relationships I have with each of you, and I love the laughter and happiness that I get to experience each time any of us speak.  I also appreciate the guidance that you each have given me in your own ways, molding me into a better man.  Tia, I will miss our updates on basketball and life, and I thank you deeply for being my friend, mentor and big (also super tall) sister.  Rachel, thank you for keeping me in check, for making me laugh every time I see you and for being the most awkward person I have ever had the pleasure of working with.  I value your input on everything and you have helped me make decisions in my own life whether you know it or not.  Finally I have arrived at Natarie (as I prefer to call her).  Natalie, we have both spent extensive amounts of time in this office.  From when I was a brand new intern and you were a temp to now when you are an assistant director and I am ready to move on to the next stage of my life, my college experience has always had you around and I will seriously miss it.  You and I have had innumerable inside jokes, countless bursts and fits of laughter, and an amazing friendship that I hope will continue in the future.  

The work I do in this office isn’t the hard part I’ll be leaving, it is entirely the people that have my crying my eyeballs out as I write.  To the other interns: you too are the reason why I come back every year.  You each bring something to the table that has helped me grow and each year I love the new friendships I make with the interns of the office.  I will miss hanging with you all, learning with you all, and suffering through pointless tasks with each of you.  I love this job and I love you and I will miss it all.

This summer I am taking a Biotechnology class on campus, working at a restaurant and enjoying my last summer.  Next year I will finish out my degree and graduate, hopefully to find an amazing job.  Until then I’ll just be getting it all done.  Thank you for taking the time to read what I have to say and enjoy these photos, a semi timeline of my admissions friends. 



Graduation, this one word has left me with so emotions lately that I can’t really say how I feel about it anymore. Yes, I’m excited. But, the question that is lingering on mind is am I ready? It’s a feeling I’m positive most of my peers in the same situation are feeling right now, but it is the first time in my life where I’ve felt this overwhelming sense of uncertainty.

When May 10th comes, 5 years of college will come to an end. 5 of the best years of my life will come to an end. But, this ending will mark a new start. I may not be ready to end college and all its times (except class of course). However, I’m certainly READY for a change, but the change itself is uncertain. Over the past year, I’ve been working for the Undergraduate Admissions Office as an intern. This position has taught me why I love NC State and how much it has really prepared me. I looked back and reflected and see what I had learned in class several times over these past couple of months. What it showed me is that what I learned in college was an experience. The experience of a lifetime that that has molded me into the person I am today. And for that I’m forever grateful.

Yes, I’m uncertain. But, I’m going to take this uncertainty as an opportunity. My plans for the upcoming months is to start working (hopefully my final interviews go well), travel, visit music festivals, make new friends, learn how to play the guitar, go to the gym, buy a new car, etc. This list goes on and on, but I hope to fulfill some of these if not all and take it as challenge that I’m only young once. I do realize that life happens when you make plans, but that is exactly what I want right now. It’s been real NC State, but I can’t wait to graduate from the greatest university of the world.




Summer To-Do Lists

I cannot believe that my third year of college is coming to an end. It seems like yesterday, my family was dropping me off in my residence hall during freshman year! Time really does fly when you are creating memories and forging life long relationships! Even though my junior year is ending, I can NOT take a break! I have to prepare for my SENIOR YEAR AT NORTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY!!!!!!!!!!!!! So here is my to-do list for the summer [yes I love lists, get over it :)]

#1. Studying for the GRE



I have to get ready to lose my mind in order to get into a fabulous Master’s program!

#2 Work, Work, Work



This summer I will be WORKING, WORKING, and did I say Working!!!!! I am trying to save up for the following year and I will be in the good ole city of Raleigh for the majority of my summer! Hopefully soon, I will get to tell all of you if I got my 2nd job! I need to start saving so that I can go to the ASB Spring Break Guatemala trip, if I get accepted!

#3 Family Time

I am also looking forward to seeing my family more this summer: family potlucks, beach gatherings, movie nights, family getaways!

#4 Getting FIT




I need to get into #BeastMode and become a healthier me!

#5 Travel


This summer I will be performing in two Polynesian Festivals in Jacksonville, North Carolina & Virginia Beach! I am very excited to dance and educate others on my Polynesian heritage.



Also I am determined to visit some of our well known interns who are both going to be NC State Alumni—-Michelle (who already graduated) and Ananya (who is about to graduate this May)! You should guess which two cities they are in!


Also, I will be traveling around Raleigh to see different concerts:) Let me know if you are going to one anytime this summer!


I am truly excited to see how this summer plays out and I hope it is one for the BOOKS! I will keep all of you updated!!!!!



Last post I discussed financial independence, the concept of an investment, and I also encouraged you to think about what it means to be financially aware. This time around, I’ll be talking about a certain type of investment: a very difficult, risky, but exciting investment. It’s an investment that, over the years, NC State has been encouraging students to delve into and explore. It’s an investment that NC State provides many opportunities to learn about and succeed in. And although it may be the one investment out there with the highest potential risk, I can guarantee that it is also, in fact, the most rewarding one. So what’s this investment I’m blabbering on about? I’m talking about entrepreneurship: starting your own business.

Most think that starting your own business is quite the challenge and that they might not have what it takes. Yes, it’s a challenge. In fact, it’s a very daunting one. It can and will consume more of your time than you would originally think. There’s also a very big possibility that you fail or can’t really take off. The most common first thought is actually, “I don’t even know what I would sell.” But before you can think about selling anything or starting your venture you need to be thinking about what it means to be an entrepreneur. When someone hears or says the word “entrepreneur” they’re most likely thinking of someone who goes out to start a business and make money. That isn’t what should be coming to mind. When you hear the word “entrepreneur” you should be simultaneously thinking “problem solver.” Entrepreneurs are problem solvers at their core. They go into the world, find a problem or inconvenience, and then attempt to offer a product or service that mitigates or solves that problem.

An excellent example of problem solving is "jar with a twist". This is a company started by some students here at NC State that I’ve personally had the opportunity to speak with and let me tell you, their idea is genius. They’ve been featured in the Huffington Post and mentioned on other media sites. They found a problem: people struggle to reach the contents of various food jars when they get to the bottom of the jar. They now offer a solution: a jar that twists up like Chapstick would so that the contents come up to you. All it takes is finding any type of problem that many people seem to encounter, and offering some sort of solution.


NC State is one of the best places to be as a young entrepreneur and the university recognizes this. We have the new entrepreneurship living and learning village starting up this fall as well as the Entrepreneurship Initiative on Centennial campus. They have an area called the Garage where there are various tools and resources for prototyping and design. EI is also extremely helpful for providing guidance and advice to students trying to start their own businesses. We have excellent entrepreneurship classes, as well as entrepreneurship classes for engineers. One thing I’ll personally be entering is the Lulu eGames, which is an entrepreneurship competition here at NC State. My friend and I have started our own company, but I’ll be telling you more about that in my next blog post.



Everyday Snapshots

This blog is basically going to be a guide on “How to Stay Busy in the Span of 3 Days”. One of the phrases I’ve grown to really dislike is “I’m bored!” Trust me, college life does not have room for that phrase! So here’s my weekend in a nutshell, hopefully it gives you some ideas. 

1. Attend a New Member Presentation. (In this case, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. introduced their newest members, one being one of my good friends!)

2. Work/Volunteer at School Events. (Working Experience NC State is one of my favorite times of the year! Then did a photoshoot afterwards so, I can’t really complain!)

3. Work/Volunteer with other Organizations. (I love volunteering with football events! My Football Ambassadors are some of my favorite people in the planet!)

4. Do Something Outside of Campus. (I marched this weekend with a protest against Deportation and it was a humbling and great experience.)

and last but not least….

5. Spend Time with Your Loved Ones! 

As you can see, there is no room for boredom. Don’t be afraid to get involved!!

Until next time,


Viet Nite

A few weeks ago our Vietnamese Student Association (VSA) hosted their annual event “Viet Nite” in the College of Textiles event room and this year’s theme was “Seasons of Vietnam.” This year’s showcase featured the VSA dance team, Triangle Vovinam (Vietnamese martial arts), University of North Carolina’s VSA dance team, musical performances, and various skits. Tickets included admission and a meal and were $6 in advance, $10 at the door. It was a great deal which made it very manageable for students and families to come.

I signed up to help with food distribution this year. Many VSA members agree that food is their favorite part of Vietnamese culture so of course it was to be included. A few well known and popular dishes included fried egg rolls (chả giò), fried rice (com chien), Vietnamese sandwhiches (bánh mì), and fresh spring rolls (gỏi cuốn). I enjoyed helping serve food because it gave me a chance to interact and see everyone that attended. It was awesome seeing people from all different cultures attend this event to support their family/peers and to learn more about Vietnamese culture. I was also able to share some of my photos I took in Vietnam last summer through a slideshow and it felt great to be able to share those. I went last year, this year, and plan to next year as well!


Top 10 Things You Can Do As An NC State Grad!

Find out why one admitted student of #NCState18 chose NC State:
The Top 10 Things You Can Do As An NC State Grad
10. Quarterback an NFL Team
Roman Gabriel, Philip Rivers, Russell Wilson and Mike Glennon have all proven this.
  • Gabriel is a 2 time All-American, ACC Player of the Year and was the NFL MVP in 1969. He even acted in the 1969 movie, “The Undefeated!”
  • Rivers broke almost all the passing records at NC State during his four years (2000 - 2003) and is a five-time Pro Bowl Quarterback (2006, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2013). Although his Rivers of Hope Foundation closed in 2013, during it’s four years in existence it donated over $1 million dollars to children’s charities.
  • Wilson in 2009 broke the NCAA record for consecutive passes without interception (379) and in 2012 he was named NCAA Rookie of the Year. Wilson makes weekly visits to the Seattle Children’s Hospital during the NFL season and during the off-season runs the Russell Wilson Passing Academy.
  • Glennon surprised everyone by working his way to starting QB during his rookie season.
9. Serve as the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • General Shelton received his bachelor’s degree in textiles from NC State in 1963.
  • He spent thirty-eight years in the military and eventually promoted to General.
  • In 1997 he was appointed Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, serving two terms and planning the Kosovo War.
  • Highly-decorated, in receipt of many awards and knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 2001.

8. As a meteorologist you can predict snow that cancels classes for a day and facilitates an NC State Tradition - Campus-Wide Snowball Fight
  • WRAL-TV Meteorologist and Executive Producer Nate Johnson holds undergraduate degrees in Meteorology, Computer Science and a Masters of Communication
  • Johnson is also an instructor at NC State in the Department of Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Science
  • Johnson has received many nominations and awards including: National Emmy Nomination and Regional Emmy Award, AP Award and Best Weather Reporting (NC AP)
  • He was the keynote speaker at the NC State Computer Science Department Graduation in 2013
7. Start a non-profit that provides clean water for those in need all over the world
  • Doc Hendley holds a Communication degree from NC State
  • In 2007, he founded Wine to Water a 501(C)(3)
  • Wine to Water repairs and installs water systems in needy areas world-wide
  • Hendley was selected as a 2009 CNN Hero
6. Become the greatest college basketball player of all time
  • David Thompson graduated with a Sociology degree from NC State in 2003
  • Considered by many to be the greatest college or ACC Player of all time
  • He averaged 26.8 points per game and had a 44 inch vertical leap
  • Hired by the Charlotte Hornets in 1988 to be their community relations director, Thompson overcame his drug addiction and is living a life of service
5. Become North Carolina’s only four term governor and have an amazing library named after you
  • Jim Hunt graduated with two degrees from NC State 
  • Lost to Jesse Helms in 1984’s infamous Senatorial Race 
  • Known as NC’s Education Governor due to his involvement with Smart Start
  • In 2013, the James B. Hunt Library opened on Centennial Campus to honor his legacy
4. Start one of the world’s biggest software companies and one of the best companies to work for
  • Goodnight earned his Masters and PhD in statistics from NC State
  • Developed SAS with others at NC State between 1966-1976
  • Named a “Great American Business Leader” by Harvard in 2004
  • "The News and Observer" named him Tar Heel of the Year in 2006
3. Co-design the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
  • Phil Freelon graduated from NC State’s College of Design with a Bachelor’s of Environmental Design
  • Appointment to the US Commission of Fine Arts in 2012 by President Obama
  • Mr. Freelon has a Masters from MIT and served as adjunct faculty at several universities around the country
  • He is the 2009 recipient of the AIA Thomas Jefferson Award for Public Architecture 
2. Become a farmer, politician and get a facility named after you
  • Wendell H. Murphy graduated from NC State in 1960 with a B.S. in Agriculture
  • He served in the NC House of Representatives and Senate
  • Murphy’s work in politics helped set the stage for the PNC Center and eventually the Wendell H. Murphy Football Center
  • In 1997, Murphy was listed in the “Forbes 400” list with a net worth of $1 billion
1. Become an author and write your own story
  • Authors William Conescu, Amy Knox Brown, Pamela Duncan, Kij Johnson and Therese Anne Fowler all graduated from NC State
  • NC State has the only Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing in the area
  • Many of the professors, past and present, in the department are also authors: Lee Smith, Kaye Gibbons and Wilton Barnhardt just to name a few
As an incoming First Year College student at NC State, I feel like my future is wide open. Thank you for your confidence in me - I look forward to writing MY own story at NC State.
-Ethan E. Stone
"For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack." - Rudyard Kipling

NCSU New Basketball Recruits

Well March Madness is over. Yea I’m just as sad as the rest of you. Nothing left to look forward to in college basketball is the beginning of next season. Many teams will take a break for a few weeks then come back strong during the summer. Sadly T.J Warren will be leaving NC State University to head to the NBA and Lewis left for Butler, but it looks like Coach and the recruiting staff has been working hard and we do have some good looking recruits coming in. Abdul-Malik Abu, a 6 foot 7 4-star combo forward coming out of Boston will hopefully be able to fill in the gap TJ will be leaving on the wing.    He, along with the amazing scoring duo of twins Caleb Martin and Cody Martin will hopefully be able to provide Wolfpack fans with much excitement once the season begins! They signed their junior year of high school so they must be just as excited to come here as us fans should be to have them. If you haven’t already be sure check out some of their highlights. Watching them has made me pretty hype for college ball next year. I got ‘em right here for ya: Twins


Game Of Thrones Prescreening

There are a lot of unique things that I have experienced at NCSU: seeing President Obama TWICE on campus, taking cool pictures in the brickyard to support various types of reform, watching the Talley Student Center get demolished AND built, and most recently being at the Game of Thrones Prescreening!

Game of Thrones has quickly become a phenomenon among the young and old. It’s popularity doesn’t seem to be waning; instead, it seems like as more new seasons and episodes come out, the show’s reputation increases all over the world! On Sunday, March 30th, HBO College choose NC State University to reveal the upcoming season’s first episode — a week before it actually airs on HBO.

I had the fantastic opportunity to not only spectate, but also volunteer at the event. It was like a mini Comic-Con as herds of people from different backgrounds and ethnicities came together to celebrate the prescreening. I knew that Game of Thrones was popular all over the world, but hearing it and seeing it are two completely different things. I met so many foreigners and graduate students along with the sprinkles of undergraduate students that walked through the doors. As a huge GoT nerd myself, I was ecstatic to see how many people were into the GoT world; people dressed up at kings, queens, walls (you’ll see from the pictures) and held up flags of various crests to showcase their love for the show. During trivia, people stood on the seats to answer the questions! And after the screening, people still stuck around to hang out and take pictures with the Iron Throne or their favorite cosplay characters. I honestly couldn’t think of a more perfect way to end my Sunday and the last month of my senior year before I leave NC State.

If you want to see more pictures, look up #GoTPremiereNCSU and #HBOCollege.


Weather at NC State

While talking with prospective students, I expected most questions to be about organizations, classes, dorm life, partying at State, etc.  The more I spoke with students, especially not native to the Raleigh area, the more I learned they wanted to learn about weather at NC State. Really? I am here to answer and CONQUER your answers regarding big class sizes, how to be financially broke and rich at the same time, how to suck up to your professors the right way, etc. But weather? Okay, I got you covered.

Like many states,  North Carolina has their four seasons—-winter (Dec.-Feb), spring (Mar—May), summer (Jun-Aug), and fall (Sept-Nov). However, at NC State University you can experience all seasons in a week—sometimes even a day! On the bright side (or cloudy side), only NC State students can make every day worthwhile regardless of what is  forecasted to them!

For example:


Unfortunately you have to walk around campus in a cold wind storm. Even though you are tripping over every brick in sight, you won’t let that stop you from reaching class…or the Atrium.  It maybe horrible outside, but students flock to the gym to get their fitness on.




Even though it was only 50 degrees the day before, you wake up to a Wolfalert saying school is closed due to the snow and ice! But it’s okay, the whole school decided to have a snowball big deal.



It appears that the Monsoon came sooner than expected. The incessant rain has caused rivers to appear on campus.  But, no worries, hundreds of students decided to trek to the libraries on campus (Hunt and DH Hill) and enter into a video game tournament.


(Songkran by NCSU BLISS)

The rain the day before brought intense and blazing heat to the Wolfpack campus. However, students aren’t just going to complain about it. They are going to utilize it and enjoy it—-water fights at Court of Carolina and free snow cones at the Wolf Plaza.



Regardless of the insane weather you endured throughout the week, by Friday even Mother Nature is willing to give you a break (she feels bad for the 3 exams you had this week).  Warm and sunny weather the rest of the weekend, which means  tanning in the Court of Carolina!

Whatever the weather is like, the students at NC State know how to have a good time whether it’s rain or shine…..snow, hail, tornadoes, hurricanes, etc (just kidding). 


I have the pleasure today of writing the first blog of spring on the nicest day of the year so far!  It’s sunny and 75, there is a slight breeze and the flowers are just beginning to bloom.  Campus is beautiful today.  It is April, the weather is pretty and the campus is pretty, but in springtime the girls are the prettiest!  I LOVE SPRING! Now would be a great time to schedule a campus visit if you haven’t yet, or if you want to see campus again.  Go to your WolfPAW and schedule your tour today!


Spring Festivities

After a long winter, SPRING is finally here and believe me I’m excited. To celebrate, I will be attending the Kay Yow spring game and the spring concert this year. The annual Kay Yow spring game is one of the 54 things to do at NC State, and it’s a wonderful occasion with tailgating of course for the hard-core football fans to see how your team looks for the upcoming season.

And, luckily this year there will be a spring concert on the same day as the spring game. This years concert headlines Matt Kearny and Ben Rector. They will be playing at Stafford commons (Talley Student Center) and its open to the public for free as well.

Go Pack!!