Welcome to Salem State!

Whether you are fresh out of high school,  returning to college after a break, or a transfer student, there are many exciting opportunities to get involved on campus in your first year. Here’s a list of ways to get involved and meet people on campus!

1. Join a sport or club!

There are tons of sports and clubs on campus that are waiting for you to join. Visit http://www.salemstatevikings.com/ for all the updates on sports tryouts and events. For other groups on campus, there are all types that are on campus that will be sure to catch your interest. There’s Resident Hall Association for students living on campus, Program Council for planning events for the whole school, Student Government Association to promote student justice. These are just a small few though, ranging from academics, cultural, performance, media, and even religious. A complete list and more information about these fun and exciting groups can be found at http://www.salemstate.edu/student_life/427.php. On the side left bar under “Student Groups and Organizations” you can find all the information you need!

2. Going to events!

Events are everywhere on campus. They can range from events in a resident hall that RAs or AMs put on, or bigger scale for the whole university to attend! Salem State is never boring because there are events that happen every week. School dances, public speakers, performances (theater, open mic, comedians, poetry readings), movie nights, fun trips off campus for free or discount, and much more! “How do I find out about these cool events?” Posters are everywhere: resident halls, academic buildings, and online. Salem State has an event calendar page, Facebook also has a Salem State class page for your graduating year, and groups on campus post events to their own page as well. Going to events helps you meet people in a fun way and gets you out of sitting in your room! http://www.salemstate.edu/calendar/ has major campus events listed by month.

3. Hanging out in public places!

This is a really easy way to meet people. Common places on campus are the commuter lounge on the first floor in Ellison campus center and common floor lounges in the resident halls. For even more fun, grab some people and take the student shuttle downtown. Most places accept the clipper card as a form of payment, or even give you discounts. Haunted Happenings is going on now through the month of October and there are discounted haunted tours, historical museums such as the House of Seven Gables, Which Museum, and more. The Peabody Essex Museum is always full of interesting exhibits every season and is FREE for students! So grab some friends and take a shuttle ride down town on the weekends and explore the cool stores and tourist attractions that Salem has to offer! The shuttle hours and phone number can be found here: http://www.salemstate.edu/5751.php and a list of off campus businesses that accept clipper card as payment are listed at http://www.salemstate.edu/students/4045.php

Your first year at Salem State should be an exciting year filled with lots of great memories and friends, so try a few things on this list and make this year a great one!

-Sarah M.


Why Mentoring is Awesome!

The odds are that you have heard the saying sharing is caring prior to reading this blog post. If I were to tell you that the previous saying is not true then that would make me a liar and my pants would undoubtedly spontaneously combust.   One of the greatest things that human beings are capable of is sharing their knowledge from previous experiences. This cycle when continued has the potential to provide building blocks that will strengthen future generations, for example Socrates gave guidance to Plato who then went on to counsel Aristotle. If you are unsure of whom the individuals aforementioned in the last sentence are I would advise you to google them right away! (Hint: they may or may not be some of the greatest philosophers of all time.)

The major point that I am trying to get at is the importance of mentorship. Strong mentoring can help build students’ confidence, develop students’ life skills, and most certainly enhance students’ academic resilience. Not to mention the rewarding feeling, for mentors, from having guided another person to success as well as the opportunity to self-reflect. The odds are that a mentee will themselves become a mentor to others. In essence being a mentor and receiving mentorship has the potential to lead to a chain reaction influencing a multitude of individuals. Interestingly enough, the greatest change or impact in someone’s life can occur due to the simplest thing, a conversation. Mentoring leads to growth and development for all parties involved; that is just awesome!


USA Today College Article:  Mistakes to Avoid Between Orientation and Move In Day

Check out the great article link above for things to think about as you are planning to start your first semester:  Definitely avoid these mistakes:

1.  Letting those hometown friendships slip away too quickly
2.  Over purchasing for your dorm room
3.  Waiting until the last minute to buy the things you will need
4.  Avoiding important appointments
5.  Letting your last free summer fly by

Want to know more about each of those?  Click on the article link above!


5 Things Every First Year Student Should Know About Class



USA Today College did a great article on the top five things that first year students need to know about to fully prepare for class and start off strong!  What are they?  Check out the article above for more details, but in no particular order:

1.  CHECK YOUR EMAIL DAILY!  Faculty have access to your university email address so that is what they are going to use in communicating with you.  If you don’t check it, and you miss something, you’re ultimately responsible…so get in the habit of checking your email on a regular basis.

2.  DO YOUR HOMEWORK!  You want to impress your faculty by having all your reading finished, notes ready, questions prepared, and assignments set to turn in.  The faculty are the ones who will be providing you recommendations later so impress them today!

3.  BE OPEN-MINDED ABOUT YOUR CLASSMATES!  You may be entering some of the most diverse classrooms you’ve ever experiences.  Everyone will be coming from different backgrounds, beliefs, viewpoints, experiences, cultures, families, and lifestyles.  Everyone has their own unique story to tell…so be prepared to listen and learn alongside each one of your classmates.  And it doesn’t hurt to meet some really cool people along the way!

4.  PARTICIPATION IS HUGE!  Most of your classes at SSU will be relatively small, there are very few large lecture courses here, however no matter what type of course you are in be prepared to actively participate and engage.  Usually 10-15% of your grade will be based on class participation and you want to earn every point you can!  Speak up, share your thoughts respectfully, and take an active role in your learning!  It will pay off in the long run:  knowledge-wise AND grade-wise!\

5.  SIT IN THE FRONT OF THE ROOM!  Okay, we know that you are groaning on this one, but seriously….studies show you will learn more and do better if you sit up front.  Not to mention your professor will be impressed.  It’s easier to take notes, to hear what the professor is saying, and to stay focused (particularly during those early morning classes).  You’re paying a lot for that class, so set yourself up to learn as much as possible.

That’s it – 5 easy things to think about…check out the article for more details and let us know what you think. Any other tips you have for successfully navigating your first college classes?


Hot Fun in Summertime

With the end of the year fast approaching many of us have started to daydream about our summer plans. Whether those plans are to layout in the sun, layout on the couch watching TV or just laying out on your bed in air conditioning here are some interesting, and sometimes free, activities to do in the Salem and Boston area during the summer.


  • ​During the summer the Hatch Shell in Boston hosts a series of free concerts which range from Beatles tribute bands, 80s hairbands and classical music.
  • Catch a game at Fenway! Seeing a Red Sox game is always a great time and tickets start at $10! And if before the game you wanted to take a tour of Fenway Park tickets for that are $12 for students, just remember to bring your ID.
  • At the MFA this summer there will be an exhibit displaying the actual Magna Carta, which was the basis for our revolution, July 2 -September 1.
  • At the Franklin Park Zoo every first Saturday of the month from 10am-12pm all guests will be charged kids admission ( 11.95 at Franklin and 6.95 at Stone Zoo)
  • In Salem this summer starting on June 12 there will be a farmer’s market every Thursday until October. Vendors will include artisan bread makers, several farms and vegetable sellers, and many other interesting vendors.
  •  Stop by the Salem Maritime in August to witness their annual Maritime Festival which will include music, exhibits, demonstrations and more.
With all of these great events it won’t be hard to grab a friend and have an awesome time in Boston or Salem this summer!
Links for more information on these events:
Fenway: http://boston.redsox.mlb.com/ticketing/singlegame.jsp?c_id=bos
Boston Red Sox Individual Game Tickets | redsox.com: Tickets
Boston Red Sox single game tickets are available at redsox.com. Game highlights, ticket offers, promotions and more. Get your Red Sox tickets today!
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Hatch Shell: http://www.celebrateboston.com/hatch-shell/concerts.htm
Hatch Shell Concert Schedule at the Boston Esplanade
Hatch Shell Concert Schedule at the Boston Esplanade, a venue made famous by the Boston Pops Orchestra concerts and later rock concerts.
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Salem Maritime: http://www.nps.gov/sama/planyourvisit/maritimefestival.htm
The Salem Maritime Festival – Salem Maritime National Historic Site (U.S. National Park Service)
The Salem Maritime Festival
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Salem Farmer’s Market: http://salemfarmersmarket.org/about-us/


Finally finals!

 This is it! The moment we have been preparing for ALL SEMESTER LONG!! Finals have arrived signaling the end to projects and papers all we have left now is the brushing up for the exam. It is tempting to use our study days to laze about and catch up on our shows and books, put aside in favor of class work, BUT these days are crucial for getting a good grade. I am aware of the mind burn out that occurs at this time, but if you can power through it this week the results will be their own reward. keep in mind that cramming is not studying, so avoid ingesting a full semester’s worth of knowledge in one night, there is no way of retaining it all. The fun part about college is the fact that you are in an environment completely designed to learn and experience things you will never get a chance to experience again.  Be sure to prioritize your exams by difficulty of the material and when the exam occurs. If you are a student that struggles with science and it is one of your last tests, start studying for it while you study for your lighter easier classes.

Now is also a good time to begin packing for our trips back home, so while you take your study breaks (because we all need them) start throwing the non essentials into bags and boxes, and begin packing away that pesky winter clothing. By the time your exams are done you will find that there is very little to because you already did it!


Happy Finals all and enjoy the fab summer to come!!!!

Happy Finals!

Hope everyone is getting ready to study for finals! Here is some helpful tips to keep in mind…

1. Count up from the reading day (or today) until the exam will take place. If you have a week then divide the course evenly throughout that week to study a chunk of notes each day.

2. Make time to study and make sacrifices by not seeing friends or family. Try to take of time from work, it will give you more time to study and will help you get that A you are working towards.  

3. Proportion your study time to how hard the final is likely to be and how well you already know the material.

4. Make sure you know what materials are going to be tested on the final.

5. Make sure you know how the final will be set up. Will it be all essays, multiple choice, giving definitions? Ask the professor, they will tell you. Sometimes, the professor will drops hints about what “would make for a good final exam question.” A study guide, sample final, or set of review questions can often help you get an idea of the actual exam questions.

6. Study with a group only if it makes sense. Make sure that you will have a group of studious people who will help review questions or quiz you. They should not be distracting. If they are, it is best to find another group or study by yourself.

7. Some professors will allow you to have a study session with you. Ask the professor about it, if they encourage it, then take the opportunity to study with them. They may just add extra points to your exam just for studying with them.

8. When you first receive your exam, take a few minutes to look over all the questions. Ask yourself: How many questions are there? Is there a choice? How much does each part count? Then make a (tentative) plan before you start. How much time will you take to answer each question? However, don’t waste too much time outlining your answers, writing down formulas you’ve memorized, or starting a question and then stopping and starting another question. You’re being graded on the quality of your answer, not on notes to yourself or false starts.

9. Be sure to fully develop your answers because you are being graded on how well you develop and explain your answer, not just how correct it is. Explain the points in more detail so that someone unfamiliar with the answer would know what the answer is.

10. Make it easy on the grader by making it clear and give your answer in the first sentence of your essay. Then, show all your work in a problem-based exam. Make sure you have neat writing; you could be graded poorly if you scribble out your answer.

11. Pace yourself during the exam. If the exam is two or three hours, then use the whole time! If you think you have the time, take a minute or two for a break between each question and part. Don’t panic too soon also. The exam will show questions that will be easy and hard. Just make sure you don’t stress out too much during the hard questions.

13. Stay until the very end. Don’t be that person to pass in the exam early, double check your answers and proof read the exam portions.  It will make a huge difference!

Happy Studying! -Sarah M.

Let’s just skip class

       With the last week of classes finally here, it is important to make sure you go to the last class. Even though it is tempting to skip, the last class can be very beneficial. Many professors use the last day to talk about the material the final is going to be on or some professors even teach on the last day. If you skip the last day you can be missing important material that is going to be on your final. You don’t want to be blindside when you go to are the final and there is material you never even heard of. Also, since it is the last week of classes I would ask your professors your grades it’s always good to know where you academically stand in their class.
     Here are 8 studying tips for finals:
1. Location matters: try choosing a place that won’t distract you.
2. Switch subjects: don’t cramp for or subject all day, try switching back and forth.
3. Form study groups: try getting together with classmates to study with.
4. Snack smart: instead of energy drinks, drink plenty of water and an occasional cup of coffee.
5. Sleep well: six to eight hours of sleep can relieve stress and increase alertness in class.
6. Take breaks: during an hour study session take a ten minute break to relax a little.
7. Test yourself: taking a practice test can help you remember the material.
8. Get organized: effectively manage your time.

These are a few helpful tips that will get you through finals week.