New To Being a Newbie

“Heaven” or Happy Valley: I see no difference. Mae’s initial jaw-dropping “close your mouth or you’ll catch flies” impression of becoming a Circler only begins the running parallel of the striking comparison between life as a Penn Stater and that of a Circler relate. At this point, Mae and myself being “newbies”, have the unique ability to briefly observe the occurrences and practices of a culture offset from that of the world around us before the shell shock wears and we too become a part of the new world around us.

For starters, The Circle’s worldwide acclaim relates very similarly to that of PSU. From academics, research and athletics to an extensive alumni network, Penn State has it all, not to mention an incredible party atmosphere if you’re into that scene. The vast opportunities presented to both Penn Staters and Circlers allow for simultaneous enjoyment and productiveness, highlighting values on ethics and personal well-being for both cultures. Moreover, both The Circle and Penn State stress becoming engaged. For example, Mae’s first days on campus was filled with tours, meeting, a party, her first “Dream Friday”, andscreen-shot-2016-09-08-at-7-01-51-pm meetings with those in her work force to ensure she settles in contently which stress themes of unity and a culture centered around taking care of one another. Similarly, Penn State has Welcome Week events including [the following]: floor meetings, freshman convocation, LateNight, Be A Part From The Start, Deans Meetings, and an Involvement Fair. All in all, these events prove that “newbies” are welcomed with open arms. Fortunately, each campus didn’t act as if you’d be set to jump right in; after all, no matter how welcoming a culture is, it takes time to adjust. In Mae’s case, she was given training in her new job with supervisors, and Annie who checked in periodically to make sure she was doing well. In my case, as a Penn Stater, I have an RA, professors, an advisor, and network of friends who all have my back. These instances help to promote a secure feeling within the culture and an overall sense of ease. All in all, The Circle has members that are proud call themselves Circlers, just as I am proud to call myself a Penn Stater. It is this sense of pride that unifies the cultures.

However, no matter how delightful The Circle may seem clouded by its shiny technology or seemingly invested workers, Penn State far surpasses its campus and culture, because unlike the Circlers who are forced to participate in the community and [who are] mindlessly brainwashed into doing whatever is presented to them as a “choice,” Penn Staters actively contribute as students — and then as alumni — on their own free will. Furthermore, Penn Staters are entitled to privacy and individuality; we are not subjected to the transparency preached by The Circle. We are Penn State! We are diverse. We are a family. We are a community there for one another. And most importantly, we are all unique, and it is these differences that make Penn State, Penn State. WE ARE…

4 Thoughts.

  1. These are really specific and clear examples of the similarities between the Circle and Penn State. I also like how you pointed out how Penn Staters can contribute by choice, rather than being almost forced to participate at the Circle.

  2. Its really smart how you talked about the Circle’s fame that is known far and wide and compared that to Penn State’s fame. It was something that I hadn’t thought of at all when I was doing my piece.

  3. I appreciate your contrast in the end, which shows that even though the Newbie experiences might be similar, the communities are different and Penn State is, in fact, much better.

  4. I love your idea that Penn State and the Circle are different in that we CHOOSE to be Penn Staters, and to participate in the community. Forced participation would take so much from what we love. What we love here is the opportunities, both fun and enriching. I don’t think I could find fun in opportunities at the Circle, knowing it was forced.

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