Lessons Learned While in Tampa

Bianca Pino - Kappa Omicron Chapter, Florida International University
Bianca Pino – Kappa Omicron Chapter, Florida International University

When I returned to my home state (Florida) for a little over a week to assist LC Nicole with promoting our newest chapter at the University of South Florida, there are several things we quickly discovered about each other and what it is like living in Tampa. Here are a few things that I learned:

We are both work-a-holics

Our meaning of relaxation is answering emails, fixing our agendas, writing to-do lists, and making up tasks just to cross them off our to-do list. We once lasted about 15 minutes watching The Hobbit before we both grabbed our laptops and started working. We just love getting stuff done too much!

I’ve now become a fan of the show Shark Tank thanks to Nicole

Before arriving in Tampa and staying with Nicole, I had never seen the show Shark Tank. Now that I have, I just want to say that I give a round of applause to all those business men and women that present their services/products because those sharks are brutal! If you haven’t watched it before, I definitely suggest you watch an episode on ABC. She also got me to watch Big Bang Theory and Modern Family!

Bug spray is very necessary to survive in Tampa

You are probably thinking, “Are you not from Miami? How could you forget bug spray?” Well I now have over 10 mosquito bites all over my body as a reminder to never forget such an essential item ever again. You win this time, mosquitoes!

Recording ourselves for my YouTube channel quickly became second nature

If I ever started to record myself in public, Nicole would explain “Binx has a YouTube Channel” to those around us. If something interesting was happening, Nicole would sometimes be the first to say, “You should record this for your video blog” before I could even whip out my phone. Despite it being awkward, it seems to pay off since a woman actually mentioned that she was a subscriber to my channel during our formal recruitment presentation! It is safe to say that my upcoming Life as Binx episode about my time at Tampa is almost 10 minutes long and Nicole is the star, so make sure to subscribe to my channel to watch it!

With me around, your healthy eating habits might disappear

Nicole has always been the “eating healthy and working out” type, but the moment I arrived in Tampa that all changed. For some reason, we quickly found ourselves eating out a lot and ending the night with double chocolate brownies and Publix Moose Tracks ice cream. I’m not opposed to healthy eating habits and working out (I’d actually love to start) but I suppose my love of chocolate and fried food is just contagious!

If you don’t have a map to find your way around USF, I suggest you get one

This campus stretches over 1,900 acres of land and is ranked as the fourth-largest public university in Florida. Coming from a campus that is just a bit over 573 acres, this campus felt like I was entering a whole other town. Good thing the two places where we needed to spend most of our time that week were just down the road from each other!

If you like New Zealand or Harry Potter, this is going to happen

Except Ted is Nicole. If you were ultra-involved in high school or college or watch an insane amount of television and movies, then Ted would be me. When talking to potential new members, we had this down to a science.

There’s no one else I would have wanted to stay up with for my birthday

No matter how sleepy Nicole and I were, she stayed up with me and surprised me with a candle for my birthday at midnight. It may have not seemed like a big deal at the time, but it was my first birthday away from home and that small gesture made all the difference. Needless to say I had an incredible birthday doing what I love most in this world (teaching others about Sigma Kappa) with one of the greatest sisters I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing and living with for a week.

Thank you so much USF and Nicole for making my week back in Florida an incredible time. In memory of all of the lessons learned, here is this epic picture we took before starting our formal recruitment presentations:


We mean business!

– Bianca


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