Heads up incoming freshman, here’s some advice to survive college Sunday, Apr 26 2020 

By Blake Wedding —

As orientation draws near, The Cardinal has decided to put together a list for incoming students comprised of helpful hints and suggestions on how to survive and prosper in college.

Attend any and all events 

The first tip that some incoming students may forget the importance of is to take advantage of any and all university events specifically catered to incoming students. These events will not only help students de-stress and get their minds off of studying for a while, but they are also excellent opportunities to meet people, make friends and find groups of like-minded people on campus.

Go to class

This is more of an obvious tip, but it cannot be understated: go to class. There are plenty of upperclassmen and older students at the University of Louisville who have been incredibly successful in their classes over the years because they understand this idea. While it is perfectly okay to miss classes for understandable reasons, one thing to avoid is the pitfall of making a habit out of missing classes.

Make an effort to participate in class as much as possible

One of the biggest issues many students face is that they fail to understand the importance in actively participating in class. Students should try to ask as many questions as possible and to interact with their professors both inside and out of class. This means that by being a more active and engaged student, professors and instructors will notice your initiative and discipline. This is one of the best steps you can take in making your learning in college more positive and fulfilling.

Study 

While it goes without saying that studying is imperative to prospering in college, another equally important thing to keep in mind is to find a proper place to study. A proper study space is all about finding a place where students can decompress, relax and focus foremost on what requires their attention. The library is a great place for many people at U of L to study, but some people tend to prefer local coffee shops around Louisville. It is all about personal preference at the end of the day. 

Make sure to prioritize sleep

Many people have made the mistake of losing sleep in favor of socializing or studying more than their mind and body can take. It might be easy to find yourself losing sleep, but it is something that their body and mind require in order to truly prosper in your classes. 

Graphic by// The Louisville Cardinal

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Juniors reflect on what they would say to their freshman selves Saturday, Apr 25 2020 

By Aaliyah Bryant —

It is that time of the year where the semester is close to ending. Of course, we did not expect to wrap up the semester off campus with online classes due to the coronavirus.

However, students and staff are staying strong and persevering. Although we have our concerns, quarantine is giving students a chance to slow down and reflect.

One of the things for juniors and seniors to think about is advice to their freshman selves. University of Louisville juniors, Biology major Alex Mindrup and English major Becca Smith, decided to share their advice.

Mindrup said, most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask for help. He said, “Even if you are a fantastic student, we all need help from time to time.” He said to use the tutoring and student services that U of L has to offer, said that this will help make you a more confident student and relieve stress.

Secondly, it is ok to go home and leave campus regularly.

He said, “Don’t feel pressured to stay on campus all the time. College is a marathon, not a sprint and we all need time to rest and charge.”

Last but not least, get to know your professors. “Whether it is shaking their hand on the first day of class or emailing them after the semester is over, they are dedicated to helping us,” he said. 

As Mindrup continues his studies this fall, he will take his advice and wisdom with him.

Smith took a more emotional approach on her advice.

She would tell her freshman self, “Your failures are not the sum of who you are, but they are a part of who you will become and the choices you’re going to make.”

Smith said that she wishes that she would have known that sooner, but she would not have become the person she is today because of it. 

This advice could apply to everyone whether they are about to start their freshman year.

Graphic by//The Louisville Cardinal

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Pack your bags and print your tickets, it’s Spring Break Wednesday, Feb 19 2020 

By Zoe Watkins–

Spring break is coming around the corner again and for some that means it’s time to pack the bags and go vacationing. But before doing any of that, here’s some helpful travel advice from Brownell Travel.

Get everything organized.

Don’t have little slips-ups right before boarding that flight to Finland. Make sure those last to-dos are taken care of the week before.

Print out all the required documents like plane tickets the day or night before and place them in a spot where they can easily be remembered.

Do research before heading out to make sure that you have all the right documents. Get everything ready and packed for the next day so getting on the road or making it to the airport is a breeze.

Pack big or don’t pack at all

Even if it might not seem important at the time, pack it anyway because there will be lots of miles between the house and the final destination.

Pack extra clothes for those unintentional mishaps and prepare for the unexpected weather with an umbrella or thick hoodie.

Stick to the itinerary

There might be a lot of things to do, wherever the vacation is planned, so make a schedule beforehand of places to visits or events going on that would be fun to attend.

As sophomore Sophia Akin said, “See where you want to go, what interests you the most and then once you kind of do that, you can work out an itinerary for yourself.”

Don’t forget that spring break is only a week

Time can fly when every day is full of things to do, and soon it will be the end of spring break.

Try to watch the time carefully so there can be preparation for when school starts up again and it won’t be a train wreck the first day.

Put everything back into the backpack, make sure there’s no homework due the next day and get a good night’s sleep so that morning class won’t be missed.

Spring break is a time to relax and have fun, so enjoy it to the fullest until it’s time to go back to studying.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Exploring intersecting identities with Queer Eye’s culture expert Tuesday, Feb 11 2020 

By Joseph Garcia —

Karamo Brown, culture expert on the Netflix reboot of “Queer Eye,” came prepared to laugh and get deep with the Louisville community Feb. 5. Students, staff, faculty and community members alike packed the Student Activities Center’s ballroom just to see the three-time Emmy winner and hear his thoughts on the intersections of identity.

Along with “Queer Eye,” Brown also appeared on “Dancing with the Stars” in 2019 and “The Real World: Philadelphia” in 2004. He has also worked as a social worker, written a memoir and co-authored a book with his son Jason. Lately, Brown has been working on his podcast, “Karamo,” and a new skin care line.

The Student Activities Board, LGBT Center and Black Student Union coordinated the event.

Brown learned how to grow and learn from his multitude of identities as a black man, an openly gay man, a son of immigrant parents, a Christian, a single father and former social worker.

“Being here in this room with us, sends a powerful message about who we are, what we care about and value. And that’s inclusion and celebrating all the identities that make us a community,” said Brian Buford, director of employee development and success at the University of Louisville.

Brown talked about his childhood and how it was a struggle for him to celebrate who he was.

“Growing up in Texas, to immigrant parents, with the name Karamo, it was not cute, okay?” Brown said. “There were a lot of times I felt alone and isolated. I knew that I was different because I would bring things to lunch that I loved, like curry goat or ox tails, and people at school would immediately let me know that it wasn’t okay to bring.”

As a child, Brown began to internalize that being different was a bad thing. He even changed his name to Jason because people would make a face when he said his real name.

“Sometimes the faces hurt more than the words, because it was like I ‘m showing you who I am and I’m proud of who I am and then your response to be curious is ‘What?!'” Brown said, “That is a very hard pill to swallow when you’re a kid, especially when you’re still trying to build your self-esteem and figure out who you are in this big world.”

Phoenix Washington, a recent Liberal Arts graduate, said it was freeing to hear Karamo speak.

“It was nice to hear about someone with a checkered past who used their identities to build themselves up,” Washington said. “Even more freeing as a queer black person trying to figure out where you fit.”

On being “marginalized.”

This discontent to all his identities, Brown said came from a shared understanding from the people around him and the media: different meant not as good.

“It meant you’re not as special, that you don’t deserve as much,” Brown said.  “And I remember getting around the age of 13 or 14 where I started to hear this word marginalized.”

It’s something we still hear to this day and is all over news outlets. Brown said at 14 he didn’t really understand what it meant when people around him began saying he was apart of marginalized communities, but now fully understands the power and implication of the word.

“There’s an undertone. When someone says you’re part of a marginalized community, they’re saying you don’t deserve access, you’re not going to attain what someone else has attained, you don’t have the right to do so,” Brown said. “When I look at myself as a black man, as a son of immigrants, as a gay man–I don’t think of any of these things as marginal. I think of all of these things as gifts that I’ve been given to create a better life for myself.”

Battling a diminished self-esteem.

But at the time, his self-esteem was still lacking due to all the negative things he was hearing from people around him. Brown realized they were projecting their fears and issues on him. “It was causing me anxiety,” Brown said.

“I realized if I wanted to have better self-esteem, one of the things I could personally do and start doing immediately was practicing not repeating the negative things I heard about myself.”

Brown said the only way to combat that feeling of waking up in the morning and wishing something about yourself is different is to stop repeating the negative things people say about you. He said you have to start saying the good things about yourself.

“All of your identities make you special, like I said, they are gifts to me,” Brown said, “The reason I have my job on ‘Queer Eye’ is because I literally went into a room full of 100 other gay guys and decided I was not going to be ashamed of any part of my identities. I said to myself, ‘no one in here has all of my identities, I’m going to share with them what is great about me.'”

Brown said that despite this, people will try to stifle your voice, or that we ourselves will stifle our own voices.

“Social media culture makes it so very easy to look at someone’s life and say ‘Wow. Look at what they’ve done, what’s wrong with me?'” Brown said, “Let me tell you something, when it comes to your identities and appreciating and loving every part of you–comparison is the thief of joy.”

More than just black and gay.

This is all to say that the biggest part of Brown’s identity has nothing to do with his appearance, sexuality or background. It’s his ability to ask for help and his ability to start again.

“That’s why I don’t like New Year’s resolutions,” Brown said, “No one says that if you don’t make your New Year’s resolution in the timeline you thought, that you can actually start again. I want everyone in here to remember that part of your identity is your ability to ask for help if you don’t know what you’re doing and also to start again.”

“Every day is a brand new day and we know that to be true. One of the things I know to be true, and I’ve said this on ‘Queer Eye,’ is that failure is not the opposite of success. It’s part of it.”

Brown said that by doing this and allowing yourself to make mistakes, you free yourself from the shackles of yesterday.

“If a little child were here right now, and we were like ‘He’s about to start walking for the first time!’ and he fell and busted his head,” Brown said, “none of us would be like ‘You’re never gonna walk again!'” To which Brown and the audience laughed.

Curiosity and the soul.

Another one of the many big takeaways Brown wanted the audience to remember was that they should strive to stay curious. As kids, we were continually told to explore and try new things, but at some point that stops.

We get into cliques and avoid anything different.

“I’m a big believer that’s where we stop learning how to connect with people and with the world around us–when we stop being curious,” Brown said.

Instead, Brown wants people to be excited about different cultures and foods.”When you get excited about something new you start to begin to open yourself up to new possibilities. You start to find yourself getting curious about so many things around you that you didn’t know you could be curious about,” Brown said.

“Curiosity feeds your soul and mind in such a way, believe me.”

And Brown does this everyday.

“What it does for me is I start to learn. The more I learn, the more I grow, the more I grow the more I can connect with other people. The more that I connect with other people the more I feel alive and apart of this world.”

Photo by Anthony Riley // The Louisville Cardinal

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Advice on the art of regifting Monday, Dec 2 2019 

By Zoe Watkins —

Though we love our family dearly, sometimes they give us presents that make us wonder if they put any thought into it. While some items might not be your favorite, someone else might enjoy them.

Regifting is basically a form of recycling but taking an old, dusty present and pretending it’s new and something you recently bought for the person. However, this process is delicate. There is a certain etiquette that must be kept in mind.

First, try to put more meaning behind the process and try to be honest and thoughtful with the gift you choose to give someone.

Also be truthful about the gift rather than trying to lie about buying it. If you explain the gift was previously given to you, but you thought they would enjoy it more, they’ll understand.

Now keep in mind when and where it is appropriate to regift a present. Don’t go regifting things every chance you get unless you absolutely must. A great example of where regifting is a good idea is when you get two of the same items.

Now, here is what not to do. Never give away a present that someone made for you since that would really hurt someone’s feelings if they found out. Don’t give away personalized items since your name is literally written on it. And don’t give away used or out-of-packaged items.

As useful as it is, be careful when regifting this holiday season. Giving presents should come from the heart, not from the bottom of your closet.

Graphic by Shayla Kerr // The Louisville Cardinal

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Black Friday advice: Strategy is key when going into battle Thursday, Nov 28 2019 

By Zoe Watkins — 

Thanksgiving will soon be here, and it’s time to gather with family and enjoy the annual festivities. Whether it’s making a hefty dinner, watching TV with the family, or tuning in for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, everything is joyful and peaceful. That is until the clock strikes twelve.

It’s time for the bloodiest battle to begin–Black Friday.

The whole day is utter chaos as crowds of customers squeeze through tiny automatic doors for the last set of cookware. So many people get hurt over everyday items, and in the worst cases, people have been killed getting trampled by crowds. However, if you think the price is right to go against the horde, here are some quick tips to survive Black Friday.

Planning and Precision is Key

Going into the store with no clue whatsoever is like going into battle without any strategy. Before it’s time for the deals to start, make a list of what you want to buy and look where the items are located in the stores. This will save you time that would have been spent searching around the store for what you need. If possible, arrive early to avoid parking wars and maybe get in some early Black Friday sales. Also, if you’re going to shop at more than one store, plan your travel by whose sales start the earliest and find the fastest ways to get there.

Look High, Stake Low

Another key detail is location. A lot of people will be heading to major superstores to get their items which leaves a lot of other places a bit less packed. So while everyone is off at Walmart, find an obscure shopping mall or a small plaza. Besides, maybe your favorite local store is having a better sale than other retailers and might have more items in stock with the smaller crowd.

Travel in Packs

What’s a war without an army? Bring friends with you so snagging deals can be even easier, but also for protection. If you have an item in your cart that someone desperately wants, they will not hesitate to snatch it from you and are willing to fight for it.

Have Some Tricks Up Your Sleeve

No one plays fair when valuable items are being sold at a very cheap cost, so use some of those tactics against them.  Put unappealing things over the items you don’t want someone to see. Some stores will even work with you to get your items safely.

Just Don’t Go at All

At this point, there really is no reason to go to Black Friday and have to deal with all of that chaos unless you really enjoy it. Just wait a couple days for Cyber Monday which sometimes has better deals and some things you couldn’t buy at the store. Also, you get to just sit your pajamas and shop around while eating the leftovers from Thanksgiving dinner.

Graphic by Alexis Simon // The Louisville Cardinal

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Washing your hands won’t cut it: Free flu shots for Belknap students Friday, Sep 27 2019 

By Catherine Brown —

The University of Louisville started providing free flu shots to students, faculty and staff on Belknap campus Sept. 23. This is a necessity for any individual who will be on any U of L campus this flu season.

According to the Center for Disease Control, vaccines produce T-lymphocytes and antibodies. The immune system often develops sickness-like symptoms such as a fever after receiving a vaccine, but these symptoms are normal and help the body to develop immunity. After these symptoms disappear, the body will remember how to fight that disease in the future should a patient get infected. The CDC also states that those infected shortly before or after the time of the vaccination might still develop the disease as the body has not had enough time to create these memory cells.

The University provided flu shots to students attending classes at the HSC campus last week. U of L even provides free flu and cold self-care kits to students. These kits can be found at Campus Health Medical Services, the Health Promotion office and at designated Flu-shot stations.

Biology professors have been teaching about viruses, bacteria and prevention, and have been telling their students common sense ways to prevent illnesses. One such way is simply by washing your hands.

One of the worst habits that leads to large-spread illness is not washing hands after coughing, sneezing, touching doorknobs, electronics, eating, etc. Not washing hands after these daily routines allows the virus to linger and be picked up by somebody else. This is especially dangerous for immuno-compromised individuals such as those with AIDS, cancer, diabetes and genetic disorders according to cancer.org.

Even U of L students agree that you need to get your flu shot.

“Flu shots are necessary to get because its best to be protected against the disease so you won’t have a chance of getting the virus,” said Destiny Smith, a pre-nursing student.

The debate regarding vaccine hesitancy is ongoing, but the suggested link between vaccines and neurological or physical disorders has since been disproven. Instead, more people tend to not get vaccinations once a disease becomes less prevalent.

Doctors aren’t just suggesting flu shots for fun. People often think they won’t catch a disease because of their good hygienic habits or a strong immune system, but these things aren’t always enough to protect you. Bacteria and viral infections are everywhere, and we carry more of these in our body than we assume.

The World Health Organization claims that about 284,500 people died as a result of the 2009 flu pandemic. Part of this was because people underestimated the seriousness of the H1N1 virus and didn’t receive the flu shot.

Nobody wants to catch your virus. Nobody wants to shake hands with you when you’re carrying harmful bacteria. Simple hand washing isn’t going to make the flu virus go away. 

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Love ain’t cheap: Dating on a dime Thursday, Sep 12 2019 

By Zoe Watkins —

Tonight’s the night. It’s your first date with the “love of your life” who you will (maybe) cherish forever. So, it is only suitable for you to make everything perfect and not leave out any detail.

The thing is, everything costs money and date nights can quickly add up to a hefty check, and let’s face it, college students are notoriously known for being broke. So, yeah, dating can be rough. Good news though, here’s some quick ways to plan out your next date night that won’t cost you an arm and leg.

To start off the night, there’s plenty of spots around Louisville to go to that are easily accessible, including some on campus. The fountain next to Schneider Hall provides an enchanting ambience with its tall trees and overgrown shrubs, and the fountain centerpiece radiates peaceful moods. Though if you want to go exploring, downtown 4th Street has a lively, electric atmosphere on Saturday nights. You could also try visiting the Waterfront Park, Old Louisville or the Highlands for a lovely evening.

Why not grab some dinner before heading out again? Some good restaurants can be found in Cardtowne. Try a simple classic like Home Run Burgers or maybe a late night coffee run at Quills. Not in a coffee mood? Try some dessert at Comfy Cow, which stays open until 11 p.m. Fun fact, both Home Run Burgers and Comfy Cow use Cardinal Cash.

Some other restaurants, though a bit farther, include happy hour at Dragon King’s Daughter on Bardstown Road and Please & Thank You in East Market. Happy hour at Dragon King’s Daughter  and Please & Thank You are both less than 10 dollars. If you’re in a rush, Sonic Drive-In is a fun choice and most of the menu choices are less than six dollars.

Now onto the main event, what you two lovebirds want to do for the rest of your evening. The Floyd Theatre, Speed Museum and Rauch Planetarium are all free to students who have their ID and are classic date ideas for couples.

If you do want to hit the town, some things to do is take a walk on the Big Four Bridge, go bowling at Executive Strike and Spare or go see a band at Headliners Music Hall.

Though it doesn’t always have to be this planned out, date nights can be as simple as hanging out in a dorm’s lobby, cooking dinner at home or a night in watching bad Netflix movies. Whatever happens though, be sure its lets sparks fly and is something memorable because that is priceless.

Graphic by Shayla Kerr / The Louisville Cardinal

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