Autumn Activities To Enjoy With Family & Friends

October 5, 2011
 Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***


Autumn is a great season to enjoy nature, family and friends, and finding comfort in cozy clothes and warm recipes!   Heading out into nature is a great way to soak up this colorful season and enjoy the outdoors before the cold of winter sets in.  From watching the leaves change color, to pumpkin and apple picking, you are sure to find something fun and seasonal to fill up your fall weekends.

Grab some water and a warm jacket, and set out for a nice, long walk.  A walk in the woods, park, or even along the city streets is a great way to take in the changing landscape.  The leaves on the trees are changing from green to red, yellow and orange, stores are putting up fall-themed window displays, and pumpkins and cornstalks are popping up on porches and balconies everywhere!  A nature walk is also a great way for you to include children (or your inner child!) in the changing of seasons.  Record observations in a journal, make a leaf rubbing with the falling leaves, or collect some fall objects to make into fun, thrifty and beautiful fall décor. 
Trips to local pumpkin patches and apple orchards are also great ways to enjoy the fall weather, as they don’t just offer pumpkin and apple picking, but many other activities as well!  Don’t forget to check for hayrides, scarecrow stuffing, corn mazes, potato sack races, pony rides and farm animal petting opportunities.  Many orchards, farms and pumpkin patches offer these fun family activities in addition to pick-your-own (and of course, already picked) apples and pumpkins.

Pumpkin picking is a great activity for all ages! When heading out to the patch, think about what kind of pumpkin you’re looking for and what you’re going to do with it.  Pumpkins come in a variety of colors (white, brown and orange), shapes (round and plump, oval and slim, even gourds are pumpkins!) and sizes (tiny to extra large), and have many different uses. 
If you’re going to decorate with pumpkins, think about how you’re going to decorate. Are you going to place a few pumpkins in an arrangement or are you going to make a Jack-O-Lantern?  A few pumpkins of different sizes, shapes and colors work best when you’re decorating in arrangements, but those big, round, orange pumpkins work best for carving.  Also, don’t overlook pumpkins with imperfections, as bumps and scars on the skin of pumpkins make for some pretty neat additions to Jack-O-Lantern faces! 
If you’re going to be using your pumpkins for cooking or baking, some kinds work better than others.  White and orange pumpkins are great for baking pumpkin pies, pumpkin muffins and pumpkin bread. For a delicious, traditional pumpkin pie recipe, click here, or here for a delightful pumpkin-raisin muffin recipe!  
No matter what you’re planning on using your pumpkin for, there are a few things you should do before leaving the patch.  First, check your entire pumpkin, top to bottom, for any potential rot.  Black or discolored areas and soft or pliable spots are a good indication of developing rot. If you see any of these signs, it’s a good idea to choose a different pumpkin!  Also, make sure you’re ready for transporting and storing your pumpkin.  Allowing your pumpkin to roll around in your car can cause bruising, and will speed up the rotting process.  Instead, bring a box along with you so you can provide your pumpkin with a secure place to travel!  When you get your pumpkin home, decide on where and how you’d like to display it.  Whether you’re going to carve it or not, pumpkins last longest in a dry and cool place, and with a piece of cardboard between them and concrete.  Follow these simple tips and you’ll have beautiful autumn decorations and delicious fall recipes to enjoy all season!

Apple picking is another great fall activity for all ages.  Apples are one of the easiest fruits to pick, and most modern apple orchards have made it even easier with dwarf trees so children can pick their own! Like pumpkins, there are a few things to keep in mind when picking and using your apples.  No matter the color (apples come in green, yellow, pink, orange and red), you should only choose to pick apples that are firm, ripe, and bruise-free. If you have any questions about whether or not an apple is ripe, just ask!  Farmers will know which trees bloomed and ripened first, and will also be able to tell you what characteristics to look for based on the types of apples they have available at their farm.
Once you’ve chosen an apple to pick, gently roll the apple off the branch and gently place it into your basket.  Don’t pull the apple directly down, shake the tree, or throw your apple – this can affect the tree’s ability to produce apples next year, and will causing bruising to either your apple or other apples that fall from the tree.  After picking, keep your apples cool and don’t wash them until just before using them to increase their shelf life.   When kept cool, fresh picked apples can last up to two weeks!  
Apples are a wonderful treat because they can be eaten fresh off the tree, cooked, canned, frozen or made into many tasty and healthy dishes! For a delicious apple crisp recipe, click here, or for an easy apple sauce recipe, click here.
No matter what you choose to do, fall is a wonderful time for taking in the beauty of nature and company.  Take some time to breathe in a little fresh, crisp autumn air and catch up with family and friends!  Don’t worry, you can thank us later!


Study Tactics To Remember!

October 3, 2011
 Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***
Studying: a task every successful college student must accomplish on a weekly basis. Studying can take hours upon hours, and many students feel like they’ve accomplished nothing after all that time. Unless you have active studying strategies you’re following, studying can seem grueling and be extremely frustrating.
One active studying tactic is to form a study group. Study groups offer major advantages when preparing for important exams and keeping up with your course material. When studying with a small group, you think out loud which helps you understand material better, share your ideas with others as well as learn from the ideas and thoughts of your peers.  
Groups should be no more than 4-6 students who seem to share your interest in doing well academically. Be sure to include someone who knows the material better than you, as well as someone you can explain it to. Sessions should take place in a place free of distraction, like a library. Place a time limit on your sessions, either 2-3 hours, so you stay focused and on task. Meet regularly so you are well prepared when an exam is announced.
Another tactic you can engage in when studying is to test yourself. Make up questions about the sections of material you are studying, and see if you can answer the questions without looking. At the end of many sections and chapters in textbooks, there is a list of review questions. Take advantage of these, and keep reviewing until you can thoroughly answer each question without needing assistance.
Keep in mind that many textbook companies also offer online questions and review websites to help you studying and understand the material. Log on and check it out.
Study for recall rather than recognition. When you take a “fill in the blank” or essay exam, you are required to recall information that you have learned from your memory without any assistance or hints. On “multiple choice” exams, you are given choices to choose from, requiring you only to recognize the correct answer among several possibilities. When studying, most students make the mistake of just familiarizing themselves with the material.
Professors know that most students are only familiarizing themselves with the material, expecting a multiple choice exam. Therefore, they create choices that all appear familiar. Don’t fall for this! Study for recall every time! You should be able to answer each question without looking at the choices, right off the top of your head. When you read the question, jot down the answer, then read the choices to prevent the other choices from misleading you. You can then match your answer with the closest one provided. If it is a fill in the blank or essay format, you will be well prepared!
Take advantage of your class time! Write down facts, examples and information in addition to the material your professor provides. Write powerpoint slides in your own words so when you go back to study, you understand it. Within 24 hours of the lecture, review your notes and quiz yourself on the bullet points. This will make studying for the exam seem much easier.
Another useful study tactic, study in 45-minute chunks, and then take a break! Research has shown that concentration, comprehension and memory progressively decreases after 45 minutes of solid studying. After 45 minutes of SOLID studying, take a break! Go for a walk, close your eyes, turn on some music, or just relax. Then, get back to work.
The key to this is SOLID studying. This means, focusing only on the material you have in front of you. Turn off your phone, computer, TV and any other distractions during that time. After the 45 minutes, you can check your messages.
The most helpful study tactic to keep in mind is to keep up with the text! Studying will become a lot easier if you are familiar with the material throughout the course. You can remember and learn a lot more information by reading and reviewing information every week than by cramming before an exam. Long-term memory is enhanced when we think and process information a little bit at a time, rather than shoving in a lot of unfamiliar details at once.
Keep up with your readings, even if it’s just to skim the main ideas or summary before and after each lecture!
By incorporating these study tactics into your daily routine, studying won’t seem so grueling anymore!  

Important Points to Remember When Making a Decision!

September 30, 2011
Life is all about making choices. From the minute you wake up to the minute you go to bed, you’re making choices; what to wear, what to eat, what task on your to-do list you should tackle first, and many more! These decisions require little thought or reflection, and become second nature.
Other decisions, however, require more deliberation, evaluation and risk assessment. These decisions are usually never black or white, wrong or right, all good or all bad. We are faced with these kinds of decisions throughout our lives, and as students you are facing the big decision of deciding on a career. 
To ensure you’re approaching the situation with the appropriate level of consideration, evaluation and effort, here are a few tips to remember from by Careerealism.com to help you get more comfortable with your decision making process.

Choice Reflects Value: Your life is the result of your choices; every choice you make shapes your reality and becomes of reflection of who you are and what you value.  Evaluate what makes you happy, what is important to you, and what leads you to make decisions (good and bad!), and keep that in mind for your next decision-making journey.
Emotions Influence Choices: Recognize the role your emotions play in your decision making process. Look for the messages beneath the emotions and let your heart and head work together to find the best solution!
Don’t Rush Yourself: Don’t let anxiety and urgency place a negative connotation on decision making! Avoid placing unnecessary deadlines on yourself by taking your time, being thorough and balancing your desire for a quick resolution with your need for a well thought-out decision making process.
Not Making A Choice Is Still A Choice: Choosing not to choose is still a choice in its own special way!  It’s the choice to observe rather than participate, and that isn’t a bad thing. There are definitely times when you are better off simply letting a situation run its course without attempting to steer it in any direction.
Refuse “Either/Or” Dilemmas: There are always more options! When you face an “either/or” dilemma, don’t place restrictions on yourself.  Look in the grey space in between – you never know what you might find!
Build Trust: Trust in yourself, trust in others and trust in the universe. Remember that change is constant and you have the resources to manage whatever comes along, so use them! Your choices shape your reality, and that means that you always have the opportunity to make choices for the better.
At Plaza College, our faculty, administration, professors and fellow peers are all there as a strong support system for each and every student. Plaza College has built itself on a family-based foundation and continues to guide and aid students in their decision making processes. From registration to graduation, Plaza College is there, caring about every decision you make! For more information, visit www.plazacollege.edu

American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Walk is Less Than 3 Weeks Away! Join The Plaza College Team!

September 28, 2011
 Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***

Plaza College will be participating in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk on Sunday, October 16th at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. 
The Plaza College Team, led by Professor Jonathan Howle, is striving to reach their $1,000 donation goal before the walk!  
The event is not a race, but a celebration of survivorship and a grand event to raise funds and awareness of the disease that will be diagnosed to an estimated 192,370 American women this year. About 40,170 of those women will die from the disease in that same year.
Please join the Plaza College Team, or make a contribution to help raise funds for Breast Cancer. 
You can visit the team website, Plaza College’s Team Page, and click on the “Donate to Our Team,” pink link. You are able to donate any amount you wish to contribute – no minimum, no maximum- and all is appreciated.
If you’d like to join the Plaza College Breast Cancer Walk Team, click on the “Join Our Team” pink link. Once directed to the next page, you can choose to donate now or later, and create a personal fundraising goal to help the Plaza College Team reach the $1,000 donation goal!
The walk is less than 3 weeks away! Help raise funds for breast cancer awareness by donating or joining the Plaza College Team. This amazing event brings students, faculty, staff and administration together for a very important cause.

American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Walk is Less Than 3 Weeks Away! Join The Plaza College Team!

September 27, 2011
 Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***

Plaza College will be participating in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk on Sunday, October 16th at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. 
The Plaza College Team, led by Professor Jonathan Howle, is striving to reach their $1,000 donation goal before the walk!  
The event is not a race, but a celebration of survivorship and a grand event to raise funds and awareness of the disease that will be diagnosed to an estimated 192,370 American women this year. About 40,170 of those women will die from the disease in that same year.
Please join the Plaza College Team, or make a contribution to help raise funds for Breast Cancer. 
You can visit the team website, Plaza College’s Team Page, and click on the “Donate to Our Team,” pink link. You are able to donate any amount you wish to contribute – no minimum, no maximum- and all is appreciated.
If you’d like to join the Plaza College Breast Cancer Walk Team, click on the “Join Our Team” pink link. Once directed to the next page, you can choose to donate now or later, and create a personal fundraising goal to help the Plaza College Team reach the $1,000 donation goal!
The walk is less than 3 weeks away! Help raise funds for breast cancer awareness by donating or joining the Plaza College Team. This amazing event brings students, faculty, staff and administration together for a very important cause.

Helpful Strategies To Keep in Mind When Adjusting to College

September 26, 2011
Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***

College is full of new beginnings; new classes; new friends; new professors and new opportunities! All of these “new” things are very exciting, but can take some time to get adjusted to. Here are some useful strategies to help you adjust when embarking on your college experience.
 
College work can be more difficult than a high school’s curriculum. Classes are taught at a much faster pace with more complex material with more reading and writing assignments required to be completed at home rather than in class. Choose a course load that is well balanced, with some challenging classes as well as some that are less intense. This will help you manage your work without feeling overwhelmed.
Unlike high school, in college YOU are more accountable for your own actions! You are accountable for getting yourself to class on time, completing all your assignments and being prepared for exams. It is up to you to make the time to study and finish assignments for all your classes. Use a calendar to note when assignments are due, when tests take place and how much reading you much complete beforehand. Leave reminders weeks in advance to begin studying or drafting your paper. If you have questions, leave a note for yourself to speak with your professor at least 1 week before the assignment or test. Staying organized will help you adjust to the busy schedule college life provides. 
Students in LibraryCollege is a time of independence – so take control of your life! Handle your finances, manage daily life, eat healthy, stay active and keep focused. Budgeting for the month (even the entire semester) will give you an idea of how much you can afford to spend each week so you aren’t left stressing about money towards the end of the semester.  Be sure to get enough sleep and incorporate a daily exercise and healthy eating routine into your everyday life. Focus on your school work and if you feel you are falling behind, take advantage of the resources college has to offer and get help. Don’t wait until the last minute! Take control of your life from the beginning of the semester. 
Plaza College has been providing students with a valuable and successful higher education experience for almost a century. Plaza is dedicated to helping their students achieve both their personal and professional goals. The family-friendly environment offers a flexible class schedule to accommodate people of all ages looking to earn their degree. For more information about Plaza College, visit www.PlazaCollege.edu .
FROM REGISTRATION TO GRADUATION, PLAZA COLLEGE CARES!

Plaza College Celebrates 100 Years of the Queens Chamber of Commerce

September 23, 2011
Plaza College

# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372

www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430

 *** Press Release ***

Plaza College celebrates the 100 Year milestone of the Queens Chamber of Commerce.

Plaza College has been a member of the Queens Chamber since 1916, when the College was founded.  

100 years ago, the Queens Chamber of Commerce originated in January 1911, when 15 businessmen met and signed an agreement. Four months later, 55 charter members attended the first meeting and the Chamber was officially incorporated. 5 years later, Plaza College became an active member of the business network, creating lasting relationships within the community.

Plaza College will be celebrating 100 years shortly, recognizing a century of providing students with a quality education that leads to opportunities for both personal growth and career advancement. This celebration of achievement demonstrates the strength, stability and commitment to the Plaza College mission founded in 1916. For 95 years, the College’s reputation for excellence has been well recognized throughout the employer and academic community.


To meet the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century, Plaza College is committed to building upon its strengths by keeping the Plaza tradition of being a student-centered, family-founded environment. The strong family bond established almost 100 years ago on the campus gives students the confidence and support to successfully complete their degrees and become active members of their business communities.


Plaza College is honored to be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Chamber with them tomorrow night at the Centennial Gala. Plaza College will soon be celebrating 100 years themselves; 100 years of strong business, commitment to education and staying true to the family-centered foundation.
 

For more information on the Queens Chamber of Commerce, including a “Centennial Retrospective” Timeline, visit their website linked here. Visit the Plaza College website for a step-by-step description of the history of the school over the last 100 years.


Money Saving Tips for College Students!

Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***

Here are a few money saving tips to help keep money in your wallet! 
Take Advantage of Student Discounts

Lot’s of places offer student discounts when you present your student ID. Restaurants, delis, retail establishments, supermarkets and other businesses around college campuses usually have a 10% off student discount. Ask around and see who is participating and start saving a few dollars here and there!
Bunk Up!
Although having your own space can be really nice, having a roommate or even roommates can make your financial situation more comfortable. Sharing the cost of rent, bills and food can cut your expenses in half, saving you hundreds of dollars a month! Make sure you are familiar with the person you will be living with and set ground rules from day one to ensure everyone’s happiness.
Prepare Your Meals at Home
Typically a college students’ life is “on-the-go”, but this lifestyle can put a hole in your wallet. It’s a lot easier for you to grab food on-the-go then prepare each meal in a kitchen, but this gets costly. Try preparing all your meals on Sunday, or a day you have some extra time, and freezing the portions. This will help save on average $8-$10 a meal – $100 a week if you prepare lunch and dinner at home!
Avoid ATM Fees
That $2 fee adds up quickly! Some ATM’s charge more than that nowadays!  Every time you use an ATM that’s not provided by your bank you are wasting money. Avoid this by keeping cash on you and only taking out money from your bank’s ATM.
 
Carpooling
Carpooling will take some coordination, but will save you a significant amount of money in the long run. Splitting gas money cuts your costs in half for the week. Find someone near you with a similar schedule to carpool with and watch your cash NOT disappear!
Coupons, Coupons, Coupons!
The days of circulars and scissors are slowly fading away! Take advantage of the internet and all the savings it has to offer! With all different coupon websites, you can print them or use offer codes online, dramatically reducing your costs. Become familiar with websites like FatWallet.com and Slickdeals.com to look for discounts before making purchases. 
Avoid Sign-Up Giveaways

Credit Card companies target college students, and know how to get you to sign up. A “free” Yankee’s T-Shirt, or Giant’s Towel is all it takes for you to open up an account with them. This credit card can you put you in debt you can’t afford to be in, and even worse damage your credit score for years. Avoid credit cards and only purchase what you can afford using cash.
 

Time Management Tips to Keep You Stress-Free!

September 21, 2011
 Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***

Time Management may be the most important skill you learn in college. Without time management skills, you can easily become overwhelmed with balancing your school-work, job, extracurricular activities and other responsibilities. When overwhelmed, many students’ fall behind and end up sacrificing their grades and work ethic.
Managing your time properly from the start of the school semester will ensure you accomplish all of your goals without feeling stressed and overwhelmed. 

Director of the Academic Skills Center at Dartmouth College, Dr. Carl Thum, suggests creating a detailed schedule for each day with the tasks you need to complete. Prioritize your list with tasks that are more important to finish, place them at the beginning of your day, winding down to more of the less important responsibilities. 

By writing it out in grid form, you can easily view how your time can be used, where you have extra time, and if you’re taking on too much. Dr. Thum recommends writing the grid out in an hour-by-hour format that shows all of your commitments and responsibilities including classes, work hours, extracurricular practices/meetings, homework slots, exercise and meals. By doing this you may realize you need to cut back on some of the extracurricular activities to complete more important priorities such as work and school work. It’s better to figure that out at the beginning of the semester, then fall behind in your classes and possibly lose your job due to lack of time management. 

Stay organized! Stick to the schedule you create and reorganize it on a weekly basis. If you know an exam is coming up, schedule more time for homework and studying and cut back somewhere else. “The challenge for many students is to set the priority and, in some cases, make decisions about what they can’t do, at least for some period of time… You can’t do it all,” says Dr. Thum.

Remember, this schedule is only for a short period of time. You will be able to get back into other activities once classes are over or your work schedule changes. Making sacrifices during the school semester will help maximize your time (and money) spent on school, and keep your grades up. 

Here are a few other tips to help manage stress while adjusting to college life from Dr. Thum:
  • Make time for exercise
  • Keep in touch with friends and family, and communicate regularly
  • Allow time for relaxation – free time to do whatever you wish
  • Learn to say “no” to avoid being overwhelmed with too many responsibilities
  • Keep a daily journal and adjust your grid schedule
  • Get plenty of sleep, avoid junk food and don’t turn to alcohol or smoking to relieve stress

Summer Vacation Experiences for Plaza College Students

September 19, 2011
Plaza College
# 202, 74-09 37th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
www.plazacollege.edu    (718) 779-1430
 *** Press Release ***

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been receiving some interesting and exciting emails about what Plaza College students did over the summer, and if there’s one thing we learned it’s that summer for Plaza students isn’t just about sleeping in late and going to the beach! 

Here are some of the most popular things you and your classmates did over the last couple months:

  • Beat the heat by seeing a new flick at the icy cool movie theater!  From “Bridesmaids” to “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” Plaza students enjoyed movies from all genres this summer. 
  • NYC saw the likes of Rhianna, Kid Rock and Sheryl Crow, U2, Tom Ze, and many more in concert this summer.  Music is great anytime, anywhere but there’s nothing like a live performance!
  • Camp counselors, lifeguards and interns, OH MY!  Plaza students sure had some exciting summer jobs this year!
  • “I’m leavin’ on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again….”  While some of you kept close to home, some of you were quite the jet-setters this summer!  From the Hamptons to Florida, and all across the country, you really did visit some great vacation spots.
  • Family reunions and vacations brought together relatives and friends from all over.  Isn’t it great to reunite?
  • Kids and parents alike enjoyed Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever by Jeff Kinney.  Janet Evanovich fans waited in line for the seventeenth book in her Stephanie Plum series, Smokin’ Seventeen. And “Chick Lit” fans delighted over the new Jennifer Weiner novel, Then Came You.  This summer really was the time to relax with a good book and nice cool glass of lemonade.  
  • A weight has finally been lifted from those of who you tackled those pesky “to-do” lists.  Cleaning, car maintenance and house chores aren’t exactly the most fun things to do, but boy does it feel good when they’re done!

Did you do anything fun and exciting that you can’t wait to share with someone?  Do you have a book or movie review you want to share with your classmates?  Any travel tips or vacation recommendations for next summer? Let us know!  We’re still taking emails and enjoying reading about your summer vacations, so keep ‘em coming to PlazaCollegeBlog@gmail.com.


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