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Student Perspective

Over A Month in Buffalo, What Has Happened So Far?

Who would know that one journey from Istanbul to New York would not only perform a displacement of location, but also take you one step further to your dreams? As said in the title, now it’s been over a month that I’ve been in Buffalo, New York. In this time frame, a lot has changed. A new journey has been started, new beginnings kicked off, new experiences have been added… Now, it’s time to have a look at this past month. In this article I will take you through my experiences from my flight, meeting Seniz abla and Halit abi, seeing the beautiful Niagara to the international orientation, making friends, carnivals, student clubs, classes, and the rewarding experience of volunteering in a soup kitchen for the first time.

    My flight from Istanbul to New York was not only a journey across the ocean, but also a step taken towards dreams and hopes. Although I have slept for a good amount of my journey, I made sure to capture some moments. As I landed in Buffalo, Seniz abla greeted me, I felt at home with her graceful generosity and kindness. After a few days I met Halit abi as well. Before the start of the school year, staying with them has made my transition so much easier. During my stay, we have taken a trip to the Niagara Falls, explored trails with beautiful wildflowers, and even had backgammon tournament night, in which I lost to Halit abi. 

As the time passed by, the orientation started. During this time, I made friends across the globe from France, Hungary, Japan to Zimbabwe, India, Nepal, and many more… This was also my first time at UB’s campus, which had me mesmerized even at first glance. Although it was cold in Knox 20, where most of our orientation activities were held, due to the high running air conditioner, it is still among my favorite classrooms. Following the orientation, the time came for me to move into the dorm. It was a time full of happiness, excitement and a bit of chaos. It was also the time when I met my roommates for the first time.


After the move-in process was over, the time came for us to have the annual human UB! All of my class members were gathered -which happens either during the formation of human UB or graduation- in the Alumni Arena. We were given either blue or white t-shirts, and we formed the UB symbol. The annual human UB had been formed during the day until my class, who had the annual human UB formed during the evening in the stadium. After forming the annual human UB, a carnival took place on campus special to freshmen.  There were food trucks with traditional carnival food like fried oreos, funnel cake, French fries, and of course amusement park machines. While all these were taking place, I also had time to visit Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, which is a must visit with its gorgeous flowers, exhibits.

As the classes started, I started discovering the campus more, found the best coffee on campus, attended meetings of various clubs, started making more friends and took walks to Baird Point, where the Greek stones are. This past week, one of my friends, who is a very talented singer, sang in an open microphone event. So we visited a beautiful downtown café. Moreover, this past weekend was also my first-time volunteering in a soup kitchen, which was a very rewarding experience. I volunteered with the Rotaract Club in a soup kitchen in downtown Buffalo called Friends of Night People. After the volunteering experience, the sun was going down over the waters in Buffalo, and I was mesmerized by the view with my friends I volunteered with. In addition to my experiences, I have finally completed some tasks like opening my bank account, attending office hours to edit my resume and LinkedIn profile, started learning Python and JavaScript, and of course attended my lectures.  Here are some of pictures from the past month…


Story by Yazgi Akata

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