Tag Archives: friends

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 18 April 2016

With the end of the year approaching, and graduation only about two weeks away, I can’t help but think about how all of this is coming to an end. About five years ago, I was studying day in and day out for college admission tests, thinking about which college I wanted to go to, and writing down pros and cons for a number of different universities.

It would be fair to say I may have shed a few years off my life from the levels of stress I had thinking about all this. It’s not easy to make these large financial decisions that impact the rest of your life, especially at the age of 18.

There was always a little part of me that wanted to come to Ohio University, maybe because I had an older sibling that went here too. The idea of college was intimidating at first, but coming down for Sibs Weekend as a high school senior, spending time with my sister and her “college friends” was a huge encouragement.

OU Sibs Weekend 2011
Sibs Weekend 2011

Despite that, I didn’t want to make a decision that was purely based on one good weekend. But when I added that weekend to the great Aviation program, to the comfort I felt on campus, to the Athens student community, my decision was simple.

From start to finish, I never stopped meeting people. I wasn’t aware until I was on my own how many different types of people there were, the way they thought, and how they perceived life. The people that had the biggest impact on me were the ones who thought differently, and I loved that.

Despite not thinking alike, I find myself to this day with the same group of friends that I made day one in Ewing Hall. We all came from different backgrounds but we shared similar core values: a belief that we’re good people, a want to strive for greatness, and a need to help each other along the way.

It’s almost like having another family. It’s one of those things that’s difficult to describe, possibly because it’s a not tangible, but it’s definitely one of those unique traits that a university like OU holds.

Now that the year is coming to an end, it’s time to grow up and think about the future. Just this past week, I’ve successfully completed my commercial pilot certificate—I’m officially employable! Therefore, starting immediately, I’m starting my Flight Instructor training. This fall, I’ve committed to staying in Athens for a year to be a Flight Instructor for the university.

After the Checkride
After my commercial checkride

Overall, coming to Ohio University was a remarkable experience. I was able to get the degree that I dreamed about as a young boy but I also took away a lot more than what I initially paid for. I was able to become the person I wanted to be: confident, assertive, and an advocate for others in need.

Alyson Meister

Alyson Meister,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 15 March 2016

Having spring break in the middle of the semester allowed for a much needed refresher and time to prepare for my last few weeks and beyond.

For the first weekend, I went to visit a friend (and former ambassador) in Chicago.


We ate deep dish, explored the city and I pretended I was on House Hunters as we looked at apartments for her. The weather was amazing and the city stole a piece of my heart. I was sad when it came time to leave, but I knew I would see it again soon. Below is a picture I took of the Chicago skyline from the North Avenue Beach.

Chicago Skyline

After my weekend trip, I spent three days at home with the flu. Being sick on break was not fun, but at least it happened when I didn’t have school and work to hinder my recovery.

I’ve accepted a job at Epic Systems Corporation in Madison, WI, so on Thursday, my parents and I drove up to explore the area and look for apartments (House Hunters Round 2). The drive up was an adventure since our GPS kept taking us off the highway and it took all day to get there when it should have only been 7 hours, but I got to see the Chicago skyline once again.

Other than my interview, I had never visited Madison so there was a lot of backtracking, trying to figure out the city layout and where to get the best cheese curds.

There are four main lakes around Madison and the heart of downtown is nestled between the two biggest ones, Lakes Mendota and Monona. Even though it was March, the lakes were still frozen enough to skate and walk on as you can see below.

Lake Mendota

The trip was successful and I now have an apartment lined up for when I begin work in July. Visiting Madison got me excited for the future, but also made me realize I don’t have much time left to enjoy Athens. I better go get started on that Athens bucket list…

Spring Break in Cleveland

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 9 March 2016

Before Spring Break occurred on February 28th, you could literally see students slowly starting to become somewhat sluggish. It’s the middle of the semester. With midterms inching closer, unpleasantly cold with shades of gray—without the summer and spring foliage as a pleasant reminder how great being in a beautifully landscaped, campus can just bring up anyone’s spirits. Luckily, we have a week off from school to have a mini getaway!

Now, some people don’t leave Athens at all; some go on trips around the country or even across the border… Me? I decided to go home and reconnect with my family and friends that I haven’t had an opportunity to see in a long time. Spending my time with people that have been by my side since day one has a refreshing effect on me. Having those different childhood memories that are interwoven with friends and reminiscing about the past while at the same time talking about the future is simply just honest fun.

One great adventure I went on was with my best friend, Maximillian. We have been friends since freshman year of high school and have shared many memories of competing in tennis matches and tournaments, family events, and even crazy late night adventures that ultimately ended up at Taco Bell. We always manage to have a great time!

During spring break, we were trying to find something new and different to do. So after searching the internet for a total of 7 long grueling minutes, we found that the Science Center was having a showing of the new Star Wars on their OMNIMAX Theater. So naturally, we had to do it. For anyone who hasn’t been to an OMNIMAX theater, I highly recommend trying it at least once! You sit in a massive dome theater and watch a film that stretches from one end of your peripheral vision to the other. And on top of it, there are speakers located everywhere to enhance the theater experience!

Below, there is a picture of the two of us taking a selfie with the ONIMAX Theater in the background. Also, if you look closely, you can see one of the characters from the movie that they projected on the outside wall of the dome theater!

Outside the Omnimax

Another adventure that I found myself on was going to the Cleveland Museum of Art with my friend, Devon. For a short period of time after graduation, she was working at the museum (part-time) simply because she loved art and history. Since I’ve never been to the museum, she insisted that I go and give it a try because of my passion of making art myself.

It was unbelievable! I feel slightly ashamed for being a native Clevelander and not ever going. Unfortunately, there was so much to see that the museum closed before we even got a chance to see everything. Below, there is a picture of the two of us next to one of her favorite paintings. It’s called “Romaine Lacaux” and it was done by Pierre-Auguste Renoir back in 1864.

Romaine Lacaux

Building your Bobcat Family

Natasha Norris

Natasha Norris,
Senior, Electrical Engineering

Athens, OH 22 February 2016

It’s a scary thought that I will be graduating at the end of April. Several of my friends are moving onto jobs and a few are attending graduate school. I have chosen to pursue my Ph.D. at the Ohio State University. But, I will greatly miss Athens, Ohio. The fresh food, the outgoing and unique personalities, and beautiful campus have all made my undergraduate experiences the greatest experiences of my life.

I am thankful to Ohio University for my knowledge in Electrical Engineering, but what I am most thankful for is how it helped me grow as a person. I could go on about how I learned responsibility, time management, and know circuits like the back of my hand. But what has been most impactful was learning how to enjoy my life and where I see myself in the future.

In my freshman year, I was the student who let my courses consume my life; my logic design book became my pillow. DO NOT BECOME THIS PERSON! Grades are important, but so is your happiness.

I began to loosen up once I traveled to Greece for a University program. Dr. Vassiliadis, a professor in EECS of Russ College ran the program. Like the true Greek he was, he encouraged me to explore and not just focus on the project.

After taking his advice and opening up to Thessaloniki, I saw how the people of Greece just enjoyed life; completely different from my fast paced life. This trip started my adventure in finding balance between happiness and focusing on homework. I began making more time for friends.


After several late night electronic homework sessions, trips to Ginger, and several blacklight parties, your classmates start to become your family.


My advice to any incoming freshman—or if you start late like I did—do not spend your whole college career focusing on your academic knowledge. College time flies by, and if I could go back to freshman year and do it all again, I would! Make friends and take time to learn what makes you happy; college is the perfect time to explore who you are.


Next year, when my Bobcat family is broken up across the United States, we will still have Athens and those experiences are irreplaceable.

Away from Home for the Holidays

Caroline wilson

Caroline Wilson,
Junior, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Athens, OH 30 November 2015

Being an out-of-state student usually doesn’t have much of an influence on my daily life, especially now that as a junior, Athens really feels like my home away from home. That being said, the holidays are a time to be with family. As the fall semester progresses I typically find myself longing more and more for the comfort of home and support of my family. Seeing my classmates head back to their homes for the weekend makes me long for mine even more because it’s a luxury which I will never have.

Lucky for me, coming to OU has also meant that I’ve become a part of the Bobcat family, which is there for me even when my blood relatives are thousands of miles away.

Surprisingly, my biggest issue each year for Thanksgiving has never been deciding what to do by myself on campus, but which person I am going to take up on their offer to spend Thanksgiving with their family. This year, as well as freshman year, I decided to spend the long weekend with my friend Jenn, a fellow Cutler Scholar from Meigs County.

We left on Tuesday to stay with her parents, and then after dinner on Thanksgiving, headed up to Columbus to visit her grandparents. Jenn’s grandmother had recently broken her foot, so we helped set up her Christmas tree for her and played with her four-year-old nephew who was also there for the weekend.

While in Columbus, we went Black Friday shopping at Easton, saw Mockingjay Part 2, and finally headed back to Athens on Saturday.

Not having had enough of Jenn yet, I went over to her apartment on Saturday night for dinner and Christmas cookies and we decorated her apartment for the holidays.

The weekend was a wonderful break before getting back to the grind of the last couple of weeks of school. I am incredibly grateful to Jenn, and to every one of my friends here at OU for making up my “family” thousands of miles away from home.

Fun Times at the Fun Barn

Wilson Taylor

Wilson Taylor,
Junior, Computer Science

Athens, OH 8 March 2015

Finding things to do other than stay in your house or room when the weather gets cold often proves to be a challenge. I find this to hold true for myself on occasion, even as a self-proclaimed winter weather dresser professional, meaning I can get out and about whenever I please.

I found my first winter in Athens to be particularly challenging because I was unaware of many off-campus activities that were both affordable and more importantly reachable. While I have since learned of many local digs I have recently been playing favorites with the Fun Barn.

While the Fun Barn is not within walking distance of the university it is still within a fifteen minute drive. The Fun Barn has many of the newest releases at a reasonable price of $4, which is often the bait for myself and anyone else I am going with.

The real hook, though,is the environment. The Fun Barn reminds me of a Chuck-E-Cheese. Before entering the movies there is a food bar and arcade. The arcade has some of my most memorable childhood games: Skeeball and ticket roulette. There are also modern games such as a ticketed form of Deal or No Deal and Fruit Ninja.

While the Fun Barn has a lot to offer the best reason to go is to have the chance to ride one of their three coin operated kiddie rides. You can see me below riding with Dr. Seuss in his slick silver car.

Dr. Seuss's Car

The Intimacy of Athens

Eric May

Eric May,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 29 January 2015

Athens is truly a college town. What I mean by that is you can thrive here using your own two legs. When prospective students are looking at where to go to college, I think that they often don’t consider whether or not they need a car or how close together the campus is. Coming from Columbus, Ohio, I drove everywhere. In Athens, I drive maybe once per week to get groceries. I love this because I get to exercise and I’m constantly running into my classmates and friends on Court Street and around campus. Not a single day goes by where I don’t run into somebody. This kind of intimacy allows for a very relaxed, inviting, fun, and creative atmosphere. Working on a project at a coffee shop, and perhaps somebody walks by and has a great insight or can help you at a point where you’re stuck–those kind of interactions that are common here.

But it’s not just work. Recently I was at the Cider House with a great friend. Some of the bars have board games and puzzles and things like that. What better way to spend an evening than sitting on a couch, not at home, and playing games and having fun and building friendships?

Jenga Tower

Of course you can do this anywhere, but in Athens you can do this casually, which I think is incredibly important. If I wanted to do this in a city like Columbus, it becomes an ordeal. I have to get in my car, drive somewhere, park, worry about driving, etc. In Athens, it’s just “Oh, hey, let’s go watch the Bobcat basketball game” or “Hey, let’s meet for breakfast at Casa Nueva.” These things don’t need to be planned well in advance. It feeds a student’s creativity and creates a much better atmosphere than I’ve seen in many other places.