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Saturday, May 25, 2024
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"New Year, New You?"

This year, Kelli Leclair, a sophomore communication major, vowed to herself that she wouldn't sleep around with strangers any longer. With approximately one month of success under her belt, she's determined to firmly say no when she's out at night and a boy on the dance floor offers to take her home, and ultimately take advantage of her.

"I'm done being used and tossed away, so I'm promising to not get belligerent," Leclair said. "That's always how I end up in some random dude's room…I want guys to respect me more."

At the end of December every year, people begin to scramble for New Year's resolutions. On Dec. 31 friends and family gather around the television anxiously watching performances in Times Square, hoping that in the moment the ball drops, their undesirable habits will too.

Resolutions vary in a school of almost 30,000 students, and they range from getting a higher GPA to quitting smoking. Though seeing a resolution through is often difficult, many students do manage to stick to the promises they made to themselves.

"My biggest weakness is procrastinating," said Matt Fox, a junior communication major. "[I have to] stop procrastinating because I have to set myself up for a job in the near future."

Fox is determined to become a sports commentator, so he said he's going to start gradually getting his work done instead of saving all of his toils for the last minute.

Jack Azus, a senior in the school of management, wants to improve his performance in class. He'd like to attain a 4.0 GPA during his final semester. UB provides students with many opportunities to succeed in school and achieve a high GPA. Each professor holds office hours for students to ask questions and receive help on an individual level. Teacher assistants are available to advise students in need.

"I think about my students every day, and worry about how to help them," said Dr. Joseph Woelfel, a communication theory professor. "It seems to me that being a student now is much harder than it's been since I was a student. Most of my students work, some two, some even three jobs. Book prices are criminally high."

In addition to doing well in school, Azus hopes to quit smoking.

"I want to have more energy, not have a smokers cough, and not be a complete bum," Azus said. "I [also] want to get laid more – girls don't like smokers."

Sharlynn Daun-Barnett, an alcohol and drug specialist at the Student Health and Wellness Center, runs a clinic on quitting smoking every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

"We work with [students] to find out why they [started to] smoke, how long they've smoked, how many cigarettes they've smoked a day, and we create a customized a plan for them," Daun-Barnett said.

Students, faculty, and staff are all able to meet with coaches to talk about nicotine withdrawal and even receive a supply of free nicotine patches, gum, and lozenges. Duan-Barnett also said that the Wellness Center provides students with "quit puddy" and "detangler," which are little toys that are used by smoker's to keep their hands busy and keep their minds off of cigarettes. In addition, there are quit mints and oral substitutes, which are very important to make sure that people don't grab junk food while refraining from smoking.

The hardest part of fulfilling a resolution, according to Dan Feldman, sophomore pre-med major, is actually finding the motivation to do it.

While some students come up with specific resolutions that pin point one flaw, Nicole Faerman, a freshman communication major, just wants to be happy.

The Student Wellness Team offers many services to help students become happier. Through mental health programs, group counseling, crisis intervention, and other workshops, students are able to get the help they need if they simply want to become happier.

"The best thing UB students can do is try to get enough sleep and to eat three regular meals a day, or if that's not possible five small meals throughout the day," said Sharon Mitchell, director of UB Counseling Services. "Proper sleep and rest are essential to accomplishing any other resolutions students may set for themselves like improving their grades, becoming more physically fit, finding a mate, or taking on a leadership position in a student organization."

According to Mitchell, if your basic health isn't taken care of, it is impossible to accomplish anything else.

While a lot of members of society thrive off creating resolutions and implementing them, some don't believe in the desire to start the New Year with a fresh new goal in mind.

"I guess I associate new years resolutions with people who only think about who they are once a year, try to change themselves in a week and then give up," said William Bergmann, a junior communication major. "I used to constantly look at my negative qualities but I have realized that they are what makes you an individual. So I've learned to embrace them."

Similar to Bergmann, Tara Songster, a freshman in the social sciences program, no longer creates resolutions for herself.

"I noticed that I never stuck to [my resolutions]," Songster said. "So there was no point in even making one. [I don't know if] anyone actually even sticks to [their resolutions]."

There are approximately 335 days left to accomplish, change, or completely forget about this year's resolutions.





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