Here is a brief, incomplete list of instructive pamphlets that I think should be written and handed out to Cornellians upon stepping foot in Ithaca. Perhaps these could become an addition to the orientation guide, and may be laminated and worn around the neck on a lanyard if preferred! I’m kidding, of course, but I really have found these atypical skills (though I’m still working on honing some of them) useful in my daily activities here! :
1) How to walk safely in all weather conditions (with emphasis on navigating unpaved, sloped, icy sidewalks, long distance endurance, and emergency speed walking)
2) Tactics of finding an optimal seat/prime piece of real estate in the library, Duffield, or similar buildings during peak hours (lunch time, after-dinner hours, and all hours during prelim/finals season)
3) Free food seeking for the hungry student. No matter how much I want to, I will never be able to attend all the events on campus, not even the food events!
4) Managing the TCAT Bus system and mastering the schedule for quick/efficient escapes/getaways
5) Tips for flawless facial recognition and name recalling. You really meet so many people on this campus in such a variety of contexts that you may find this skill helpful, if you don’t already have it.
6) Time management!
7) How to stay warm outside and cool inside. You will experience the struggle that is piling up every one of grandma’s sweaters in a valiant effort to stay warm during your windy, snowy walk to class, only to discover that your lecture hall is overheated and quickly filling up with warm bodies, as well as your own sweat. This sounds facetious, but there’s truth in there.
8) How to make a quarter card and how to print a quarter card. There are so many options and almost every club needs these mini flyers at some point in its life! Also, the etiquette of quartercarding, as well as that of politely avoiding quartercarders
9) Ticket buying! The race to waking up early, standing in line for hours for Hockey tickets, or eagerly waiting at a computer for the online concert ticket platform to open its doors can be tricky. I’ve been lucky, though. Not only have I recently seen Jessica Williams speak at Cornell, but also, this Monday, I will be seeing Common in our own Bailey Hall.
10) How to maximize your patience while standing in line
11) How to get home safely after a late night of studying or otherwise
12) Finding a book in the library’s famed and hugely extensive stacks without running short of breath or into confusion
13) Managing your vast collection of GroupMe chats, catching up on emails, texts, phone interviews, and even seeing people in real life
14) Resisting the urge to take a picture of everything, everywhere
15) How to settle on a final class schedule when there are so many options and learning opportunities available. Another situation that makes it impossible to have it all! This school is wonderful, but it’s also such a tease (a tease I wouldn’t trade, though).
Note: I captured the photo above from a window in the ILR school’s library! I clearly must work on #14 of this set, as well as a number of others, if not all others.