An average first-year student’s experience at Geneseo probably involves searching for classes, joining new organizations and getting accustomed to pulling all-nighters. Alongside all of these new happenings, the 2012-2013 first-year experience likely involves junior Daveyy Sak.
Sak has played a role in facilitating almost every aspect of a new student’s impression of Geneseo, serving as an Access Opportunity Programs adviser in summer 2011, an Orientation Adviser in summer 2012, a tour guide and a Resident Assistant in Onondaga Hall.
According to Sak, his roots in first-year programs are traceable.
“In conjunction with Onondaga being the biggest first-year building, people from orientation are still like, ‘Oh my God, I remember you. You were really fun,’” he said.
Sak, a Rochester native, said the first few weeks of transitioning to college at Geneseo are among the most difficult challenges he’s faced.
“I was trying to find where I fit in and I was trying to find where my friends were,” he said.
“Like always, I just persevered … and found my friends,” Sak added. “My problem was overcome very easily, but without them, I don’t think it would’ve been.”
Sak said that he continued to persevere as he moved forward in college. He applied for the RA position three times before he was hired to work with first-year students in Onondaga Hall.
“I was really discouraged, but then I was just like, ‘I really want this [RA position] and I’m really passionate about it,’” Sak said.
Sak said he currently knows almost all of the 300 Onondaga residents’ names and he makes sure to “keep a connection with them.” He hosted a program last fall based on the reality game show “Survivor” to facilitate friendships between residents. The program gave 18 students the chance to compete in various physical and mental challenges, complete with a tribal council to vote losers off the island. Sak told competing students, “The people you meet and the fun you have and the memories you make are going to outweigh being voted out.”
Through his experiences with first-year programs and inspiration from his adviser, Access Opportunity Programs top counselor Thomas Chew, Sak said he has set a new goal to enter student affairs after graduating from Geneseo. He is currently looking at graduate schools for programs in academic counseling and educational administration.
Sak said his career choice helped him to select his major in communication after three semesters of being undecided. He said the communication major provides the tools he needs to work in student affairs.
“I guess in kind of a retrospective, reverse kind of way, communication actually gave me the light to pursue what I wanted to do,” Sak said.
In addition to his affinity for making students feel welcome, Sak said he also has a passion for performing and making people laugh. He has acted in three productions at Geneseo: “Museum” in 2010, “Grapes of Wrath” in 2011 and “The Laramie Project” in 2012. He also makes movies for fun and in conjunction with Geneseo Student Television.
After all of his experiences and on-campus involvement, Sak said, “I think the amount of people I’ve come into contact with and learned so much from, I think that’s the most rewarding thing. The network I’ve made at Geneseo is something I’ll never forget.”
Sak was able to sum his personality up quite simply.
“I’m a big fun person … I’m all about fun,” he said.