First Year Read!

Welcome to Stevens! My name is Grace Miguel and I am a junior software engineering major. I am from Washington Township, NJ(the one in Bergen County). 

By this time, all of you should have received your summer reading book, What the Eyes Don’t See by Mona Hanna-Attisha. I highly encourage you to read this novel because it is relevant and applicable to today’s world.

 At Stevens, our ideology is to apply our knowledge in the classroom to the real world. We don’t learn isentropic processes and big-O notation to plug and chug into equations just to get a decimal number that is meaningless to us. Stevens students are curious. We take concepts from our courses and apply it to what is meaningful and purposeful to us. For example, in my independent software engineering class, I had a semester long project. The only directions I were given were, “Create something with code, it can be a website, a game, anything.” Initially, I was taken aback, I’ve always been given directions for what exactly I should do. This was an opportunity to pursue something meaningful. Because I love spending time outdoors, I decided I wanted to create a website that gives Stevens students directions to mountains and trails based on the wanted intensity of the hike and the distance from campus. This was the most rewarding project I’ve done because it was something I cared about. 


The reason why I think you should read this book, or at least skim through the chapters is because it will open your eyes to the grander picture. College isn’t all about getting an A in every course and reading the textbook under your desk lamp into the wee hours of the morning. College is immersing yourself in your classes and putting your knowledge to use. The themes highlighted throughout the book such as ethics, leadership and technology will stay with you throughout your time at Stevens.

What is happening in Flint, Michigan is very real. Mona Hana-Attisha is not just a pediatrician, she is an activist for Flint children and a person who looks beyond her office. I implore you to read this novel not just to understand the crisis in Flint, but to understand that anyone can make a difference. 

The Samuel C. Library is a great resource to find academic databases and journals for research papers and research guidance. You may also borrow books, newspapers and magazines from the library as well. For more information about the library click here. They even put together a research guide for the book which you can find here.

Another reason you should read the book is because you can enter the Summer Reading Contest! It is optional, but there are three options: 

  1. Essay: Discuss one of the book’s themes and relate it to a unique cause or solution to What the Eyes Don’t See -No longer than 1,000 words
  2. Art Activism: Create a piece of art that represents the theme of activism in the reading or that reflects current cultural or political power structures in the United States.  This art can be visual, literary, digital, or whatever form you see most fit.  -Submissions that are physical can be sent in by taking a photo(s) of the piece.
  3. Video-Present one of the book’s themes and relate it to a unique cause or solution to What the Eyes Don’t See -No longer than 2 minutes. 

First place will receive a $200 bookstore credit. Second place will receive a $100 bookstore credit. All submissions can be submitted by August 16, 2020 to 

Grace Miguel, Software Engineering

Mental Health and Asking for Help

Hi everyone! My name is Victoria and I am a 3/4 Chemical Engineering major from East Hanover, NJ. I am on the varsity Track and Field Team, participate in Student Government, and am a sister of Sigma Delta Tau Sorority. From my time at Stevens, I have grown a lot as an individual. I’ve learned a lot about what I need to be successful, what I like and don’t like, and most importantly, when to ask for help.

When I came to Stevens, I was so excited about this new chapter in my life, but I was also really anxious. I was away from home for the first time, and college was so different than what I was used to. I was so accustomed to the way things were that the thought of starting over scared me so much. I was also really nervous about balancing athletics vicand school, but didn’t want to admit it. So, although I put on a brave face to my friends, behind closed doors I was struggling. The turning point for me came when a friend came to me and expressed that she too had been feeling really anxious. It finally dawned on me that I wasn’t the only one feeling this way, and that by talking to other people about the way I was feeling, I could relieve a lot of the stress I had been carrying around. 

So, I made an appointment with a therapist at Stevens’ Counseling And Psychological Services (CAPS) to talk about how I was feeling. I told her all the things I was too afraid to tell anyone else, and believe it or not, it felt so good to say those things out loud. After my first appointment, I came back several times to continue to talk to a counselor about how I was doing. And ever since then, I have been a staunch advocate for mental health and asking for help.

It is completely normal to not be okay sometimes. The important thing to remember is that there are so many people who want to help you, and that recognizing when you need help is a sign of strength. Maybe that means talking to your peer leader or a friend. Maybe that means seeing our CAPS department. Maybe that means submitting a care report for yourself or a friend. Either way, asking for help is one of the best things you can do for yourself and for the people around you. You should never feel like your mental health is something to be ashamed of. It is just as important as your physical health, if not more. 


CAPS Contact:  E-mail:          Phone: 201.216.5177

To Submit a Care Report: go to your MyStevens, click “Report a Concern”, then click “Care Report”

Victoria Agaliotis, Chemical Engineering

Study Tips

Hi everyone! Welcome to Stevens!! My name is Angelica Torres, and I’m one of the Peer Leaders (PL’s) this year! I am a recent Software Engineering graduate and rising Master’s student studying Systems Analytics. 

There is definitely a big academic transition from high school to college, and myself as well as the other PL’s are here to help you with that. My Freshman year, I know I could have taken a better approach to studying than I had. I thought that studying the night before like I did in high school would be good enough. After that year and in the years to come, I’ve learned my fair share of studying “Do’s and Don’ts” and would like to share some tips!


  1. Don’t cram! I know it’s easier said than done, but you need to give your brain time to absorb the information. Start studying a couple days in advance, so you don’t feel overwhelmed the day before the exam. Additionally, studying well ahead of time ensures that you can get a good night’s sleep before test day! This is especially helpful for times when you seem to have a lot of tests/assignments. 
  2. Take breaks. I know that for me, after hours of studying my brain starts to feel like mush. Remember to take breaks between topics whether it be doing a puzzle, scrolling on your phone, or eating some food. 
  3. Reward yourself. Going off the last tip, you can perform positive reinforcement by rewarding yourself with candy/Netflix/phone time after every milestone. Set realistic milestones like every 5 questions you get right in a row or reading a chapter.
  4. Use your resources. When preparing for a test, definitely use your resources like your professors’/TA’s office hours. You can also request a tutor who will help you review or attend walk-in tutoring hours. Lastly, the academic support center typically hosts test reviews for classes such as Calculus or Chemistry. I highly recommend attending these reviews as I found them super helpful. 
  5. Review past assignments/old tests. I’ve noticed that professors usually like to structure their exams similar to those they’ve given in the past. Some may even post old tests to help students study. Definitely look these over! I also noticed that if there were some assignment questions that many of us got stuck on, professors might include a similar question on the exam. I also found that studying by practicing old test questions made me more prepared for the exam than just reading/looking at the problems.
  6. Have a study partner/group! Not only is it good to quiz yourself, it is good to quiz your friends and have them quiz you. Talking through the answers helps reinforce the information you are trying to process. You and your partner/group can also contribute to study guides/Quizlets together.

I can’t wait to welcome you all to campus in a few weeks. I hope these tips help you thrive during your first semester and throughout your college career!

Angelica Torres, Systems Analytics

Living with Roommates

Hey everyone! My name is Terence and I’m a 3/4 Business & Technology major from Manhattan. One of the many things that drew me to Stevens was the beautiful view across the river. I wanted to stay close to homIMG_0228 - Terence Chane and being able to see the skyline from campus was always a reminder of close I was.

I chose to live with my best friend and also teammate at the time. We were a pair that got assigned a random roommate to fill our triple in CPH. I’ve shared a room my entire life with my sister so living with people in one room isn’t new to me. But one of the biggest advice I’d tell myself as a freshman living with new people is to set clear cut boundaries at first. It’s important that you and your roommate(s) are all on the same page about having guests over, quiet hours if someone usually stays up late, cleaning schedules, and coordinating personal time for each person in the room. This ensures that when issues do arise there is a sense of communication between you and the people you’re living with. And communication is key!

But it also doesn’t need to be that serious. Your roommates freshman year can play such a huge role in your life as they are the ones you’re getting to experience this monumental new chapter in your life with. I actually got to experience having multiple roommates as I lived in a triple; we also ended up switching roommates second semester. My roommates freshman year have become my best friends at school and we’re still so close to this day. They became the people you always got food with, walked to class with, went to Dunkin’ with. Living with new people may sound daunting at first, but it’s one of the best experiences that college gives you.

Terence Chan, Business and Technology


IMG_6605Hello and welcome to your home away from home for the next four(or five) years! My name is Grace Miguel, I am a junior Software Engineering major from Washington Township, NJ—the one in Bergen County. When I was an incoming freshman, I was inevitably asked where I’m from countless times and it was always a confusing question because there are five Washington Townships in New Jersey I resorted to saying, “the one near Paramus”.

I digress, because I live merely 45 minutes to an hour from campus, I commute! I commute via NJTransit so the arrival time can vary. If you choose to commute via train or bus, you can get a student discount. Log into your myStevens account and go to the “transportation & parking” icon. There you will find a couple different icons for methods of travel to and from campus. Click on the icon with the NJTransit logo that reads “Discount Student Tickets” and enroll in the Student discount program. The discount only applies to monthly passes, it is 25% the original ticket price. NOTE, if you choose to enroll online, you will only have the mobile monthly pass. If you want a physical pass you will have to go to the Office of the Registrar to get a physical form to fill out for each month of the semester. The Registrar must sign and stamp it in order for you to get the pass from Hoboken terminal. Monthly passes are available from the 19th of the prior month to the 10th of the month the pass is valid for. Example: You can buy an August pass beginning on July 19th through August 10th. 

If you choose to drive to campus, you can purchase a semester parking permit online at the “transportation & parking” icon mentioned earlier. The semester pass will cost $150 and you will park your vehicle in Babbio garage. Because this Fall is unlike past semesters, Stevens will also be offering daily parking passes for $10/day. Unfortunately, you may not park overnight unless there are extenuating circumstances which you can tell the Campus Police. 

Here are some tips to help your new commuting lifestyle simpler:

  • Early is on time. Even though the train/bus may say it arrives at your home station at 7:37AM it may come 5 minutes earlier if they are ahead of schedule. Arrive at least 10 minutes before the arrival time! You also don’t want to be late to class, especially lab, so make sure you get to campus at least 15 minutes before class begins.
  • Pack your backpack the night before. If you sleep past your alarm and have to run out the door, you don’t want to forget your calculator or even worse, your wallet. 
  • Check the weather! Getting soaked from head to toe is no fun and can easily be avoided.
  • Sign up for StevensAlert, you can do this through myStevens. If school is cancelled or there is a delay due to weather conditions you will get an email and text alert. This has saved me from making a 45 minute trip for nothing.
  • Pack snacks! You never know how long you’re going to be out. You may spend time with friends or exploring Hoboken after class is over… you don’t want to get hungry. I always pack an extra granola bar.
  • Wear comfortable shoes. If you’re walking to and from the Hoboken terminal you don’t want to wear shoes that will give you blisters. 
  • There is a shuttle on 1st and River. This is the blue line. You can find the schedule here. This will take you to the Howe Center.
  • Don’t forget your laptop and phone charger. Don’t let your laptop die during class.
    • Better yet, invest in a portable charger, it’s a life saver.
  • Bring headphones!!! Whether you’re on public transportation,want to listen to music while studying or working out at the DeBaun Athletic Center, headphones are key.
  • Additional items you should carry 24/7: hand sanitizer, chapstick, cash, extra pens and pencils.
  • Try to travel light. This may sound contradictory but you don’t want to get back problems at 18. One way to do this is to take notes on a digital device or alternate notebooks depending on what classes you have that day. 

When I was a first year student, transitioning to this new lifestyle was a big change. I’ll admit, it was exhausting at first but I grew used to it and met other commuters who shared this commonality through the Commuter Student Union. As a commuter, I have the luxury of experiencing college life while still having the comfort of my own bed and personal space. Not to mention the home cooked meals are a plus. 

Just because you’re a commuter does not mean you cannot be involved. Most clubs hold meetings at 9PM, but there are meetings during academic break on Wednesdays between 3 and 5pm as well as in the late afternoon on some days. I am on e-board of the Stute, the school newspaper, a member of a sorority on campus and work at the Writing and Communications Center. If you want to get involved, you can find a way.  If I ever wanted to go to a club meeting or a social event at night, my friends living on campus or in Hoboken would be kind enough to let me crash. Circumstances are different now because of the pandemic, but when things go back to normal, I’m sure your new friends will let you crash. 

This is a lot of information and I know this can be overwhelming but you are not alone in being nervous or even intimated by this new journey. The Stevens community is here to support you and encourage you throughout your Stevens career.

 I hope this was helpful and I look forward to meeting you all!

Grace Miguel, Software Engineering

Living Off Campus


Hi everybody! My name is Matt Kirby and I’m a 3/4+1 mechanical engineering major from New City, NY. The past two years at Stevens have been truly a wonderful experience and I am excited to see where these next three years take me. Stevens is unique compared to other colleges in the sense that we have the city of Hoboken surrounding our campus. Hoboken is a part of our campus and many students consider it their home, referring to it as “home-boken”. You will likely feel this while living in the dorms during your freshman year, but I personally86189418-6CBB-48BA-A56F-FBAF0EE1CAC4 - Matthew Kirbydidn’t realize the impact Hoboken had on the Stevens experience until I decided to live off campus.

Moving into my apartment for the first time last summer seemed daunting, but once I got used to living there I realized how amazing of an experience it is. I was living with three close friends as roommates and thankfully we all were able to get along. Paying rent, electricity, wifi, and any other bills might sound somewhat intimidating, but if you are able to communicate with your roommates then it shouldn’t be a problem. Originally we were somewhat worried that our apartment was far from campus, but in the end everything in Hoboken is within walking distance so the “far” walk wasn’t even that bad. However, a far walk sounded scary on days that were freezing in the winter. Luckily, Stevens shuttles are always running and we were able to utilize them to avoid being frozen.

Anything you could want is all right around your apartment too! I’m sure you’ve heard all about it by now, but Hoboken is known as the “Mile Square City” because of its smaller size. There are so many amazing restaurants around that are all within walking distance of campus, some of which accept DuckBills. Some of my favorite nights were when I would stay in on the weekend, pick up a wrap from Napolis, and watch a movie in the living room. I’m not sure why, but having the ability to do that just feels so satisfying. 

There are a lot of freedoms to consider when living in an apartment off campus that you don’t really think about while you are living in the dorms. My personal favorite was not having to deal with communal bathrooms. Yes they honestly aren’t that bad when you’re living in dorms, but having a bathroom to yourself is liberating. The ability to even have a living room where you can sit, watch TV, and hang out with friends is also something that really is an amazing feeling. 

My first few weekends at my apartment before any of my roommates moved in all I had was a kitchen table, a small TV on the floor, and my bed, and I had my friends from High School come visit. Being able to say “welcome to my apartment” made me feel like I had matured and become a real adult. There are also a multitude of different grocery stores and pharmacies around Hoboken that you can go to for groceries and whatever else you may need. Living off campus really makes you realize how lucky we are to be within such a nice small city.

Matthew Kirby, Mechanical Engineering

Living On-Campus

Hi y’all! I’m Leticia, a 2/4 mechanical engineering major from Wharton, NJ. I still feel new here at Stevens because I don’t really feel I ended my freshman year with it all going online but being on campus for most of it was pretty spectacular. My favorite part of it all, was how close classes were from the dorms, especially Davis. I’d wake up 10 minutes before class, Grubhub a delicious Red & Gray sausage ,egg, and cheese croissant sandwich and arrive at class on Leticiatime. I love the fact that we are a small campus because everything is within arms reach. Food, classes, teachers, friends, study areas, everything. 


When Stevens returns back to normal, going to events will definitely be something I’ll be coming back for. I went to a lot of events intentionally and unintentionally. When I would have time between classes, I’d find myself in the middle of some sort of festival/art fundraiser/ thanksgiving feast without knowing that they were there. (Now I use the Corq app to be in the know of events.) I’d just walk up to the sign up table and show my event pass. Some advice I’d give to incoming students is to sign up for anything you might think is fun and interesting. Each sign up is another experience you wouldn’t have had before. Sign up for a club and go to the General Body Meeting (GBM) to get a feel for it and see if you like it. All groups are very welcoming and want you to take part in whatever they do. There’s always something to do on campus. 


Now with Covid-19 though, there might be less in person events to go to but this is exactly when you should join things on campus. Easier access to the clubs, more relaxed environment, and a fun place to get to know more people. Even if you feel a bit shy or anxious, just know that whatever you join and whatever you do on campus will benefit you in the long run as you’ll meet new friends and make wonderful memories that’ll last.


Leticia Gonzalez, Mechanical Engineering

Public Transportation in Hoboken

Easy access to many different forms of public transportation is one of the things that makes Hoboken so fun! With one quick bus or train ride, you can be in New York City, Jersey City, or many places within New Jersey.


To get to NYC:

Being only 15 minutes away from New York City opens up a whole world of opportunities, both professional and social. From externships to concerts to pop-ups to good eats, the city has so much to offer, and I would highly recommend taking as many (safe!) trips there as you can manage to squeeze in! There are two main ways to get to NYC from Hoboken: NJ Transit buses and the PATH train.

The 126 bus line of NJ Transit stops on every other block of Washington Street and drops you off at Port Authority. The fare is only $3.50; you can download the NJ Transit app to easily buy tickets and track when the next buses arrive at each stop.

The PATH station, along with the NJ Transit train station and Light Rail station, is located at the very end of downtown Hoboken in the Hoboken Terminal (if you can spot the big tower that says “Lackawanna” on it, the stations are right under it!). There are two PATH


lines that start in Hoboken, one going to downtown New York and stopping at the World Trade Center and the other going to uptown New York and stopping at 33rd Street. Find the full PATH map here: You can use an NYC Metrocard to pay your PATH fare, which is $2.75.

To get to Jersey City:

If you’re in the mood to go to a mall or Target, Jersey City is your best option. The Hudson-Bergen Light Rail line can be used to get to the Newport Center in just about 10 minutes. The Light Rail departs from the Hoboken Terminal and the fare to the Newport Center is $2.25. The nearest Target is about a 15 minute walk from the mall. The Light Rail can also be tracked on the NJ Transit App. For more information about where the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail line goes, check out this map:

To travel within New Jersey:

Whether you’re from New Jersey finding an easy way to get home or from out of state trying to visit the shore, NJ Transit will get you where you need to go. Though PATH and Light Rail also have destinations to other major Jersey locations (most importantly, Newark station), the most effective and far-reaching way to travel within the state is by bus or on train. The NJ Transit app is extremely helpful for both of these methods. The maps, stations, and transfers can get a bit confusing, but with practice and a lot of reliance of Google Maps, you’ll get the hang of it! Fares for both depend on how far you’re travelling. To find more information about NJ Transit, visit their website:

Hoboken is highly connected to many great destinations throughout New Jersey and New York. There is so much to do and see in the area, and one of the most important things Stevens gives you is the opportunity to experience all of it! In your time in Hoboken, take every chance you can get to explore the city, go shopping with friends, or take a break by visiting your hometown. It will enrich your college experience and help you make unforgettable memories that you will cherish for the rest of your life.

Suzy Shailesh, Computer Science