3 reasons why Shop One is cooler than you think

So if you have spent any time around RIT’s campus or ventured into Global Village, it’s likely that you have heard about or seen Shop One. Let’s be honest though, how many times have you just walked right past it thinking it’s probably not your type of store. Here are our top three reasons why Shop One is just so much cooler than you ever expected:

1. It’s the revival of the original Shop One, which began the Craft Movement.

So unless you are an art history aficionado, those words will mean very little to you and you might even be looking forward to reason number two of this list. But just wait – it’s actually a neat story.

Shop One, here on RIT’s campus, is actually a revival of the downtown Rochester Shop One which opened in 1953 as the first retail gallery outside of New York City that exclusively sold hand-made, one-of-a-kind pieces of craft and art. Alongside Manhattan’s America House, Shop One in Rochester was vital in starting the Craft Art Movement in America.

Today, we have the revival shop, right here on our campus. Now isn’t that just a cool living piece of history? It’s definitely not something most universities can brag about.

2. It’s not your typical retail gallery.

Walking into a museum gift shop, you often find huge areas labeled “local artist.” Try asking one of the store employees about the artist, and you’ll often hear that yes, indeed, this piece was made by a local artist. Try asking more. That question is usually met with awkward silence. Now this isn’t a point to harp on museum gift shops around the country as surely there are many very well educated employees, however, Shop One makes this a priority.

Wendy Marks, director of Shop One, says that what really sets RIT’s Shop One apart is their constant effort to “highlight RIT talent and familiarize people with the work and the artists.” The store currently has four student and one adult sales associate who can gladly answer any and all question about the work they sell. Additionally, as you can see in the photo below, all around the shop, you can find plaques that give you more information about the artist/designer and their work.

3. It’s focused on the RIT family and network.

As mentioned above, when you walk around Shop One, you will find many information plaques. If you stop to read them, you might be surprised to find out that most of the artists are RIT alums. In fact, about 90% of the products are made by RIT alumni from programs such as industrial design, fine art, and jewelry making (just to name a few). It’s such a great experience to go into the store and think “Wow, I didn’t know that was made by a former RIT student!” – it truly makes you see just how influential RIT graduates become in their respective industries.

In fact, Shop One continually assists in bridging the gap between student and alumni. Just this past month, Shop One set up a table featuring RIT Industrial Design alumni work sold at the store during the program’s annual Design Autopsy show in Bevier Gallery which featured the work on notable alumni.

Shop One also participates in the “Length of Service Program” which rewards significant anniversaries of tenured professors by allowing them to select certain goods from Shop One. Rather than a pen with their name printed on them or a plaque that will get shoved to the back of an office, RIT professors get to receive beautifully designed and crafted products that support the RIT alumni.

To find out more about Shop One, you can view their website here, or just stop by in person!

National Espresso Day

It’s getting colder outside. Exams are just around the corner. Staying under the covers with a great book or movie and a warm beverage sounds like just about the perfect escape from all the end-of-semester worries. And since this year Thanksgiving shared the date with National Espresso Day, we thought it would be the perfect time to scope out Rochester’s best coffee shops.

Using recommendations from our friends and Yelp reviewers, we set out to try third wave coffee shops in the surrounding area to see if any of them could be the perfect solution for keeping you warm, awake, and productive in the upcoming weeks. Here are our five top picks:

  1. Fuego Coffee Roasters

Coming in with the highest Yelp ratings, Fuego was a definite can’t miss location. Located in Downtown Rochester right off East Ave, Fuego has an interesting and unique vibe that mixes the lives of downtown corporate workers and the city’s Eastman School of Music students.

Fuego was started by high school sweethearts, and they continue to take pride in the fact that they put so much care in every step of the coffee roasting process – from finding the best coffee beans to using the best artisanal brewing techniques to achieve the best tasting cup of coffee. Upon walking into the cafe, you will feel at home as you can order straight at the bar, sit down and your coffee will be brought straight to you. In our top five, Fuego was the only coffee shop with the unique aspect that you paid at the end of your visit.

It was easily to tell that Fuego is obviously very involved in its neighborhood as there was a wide array of flyers about upcoming shows, events and even ones announcing that Rochester’s own Petit Poutine truck would be stopping by the following Wednesday.

For their smooth and sweet espresso, Fuego earns a spot on our list, however – due to it’s distance away from RIT and longer wait times than the other coffee shops we visited, it doesn’t quite earn the top marks.

  1. Java’s

We couldn’t make a round-up list of the best coffee shops in town without including Java’s, right here on campus. Not only is their espresso delicious but they use some of the best milk – from Rochester’s Pittsford Dairy and their pastries are baked locally in their bakeshop. Now, that might not sounds all too unusual for a third wave coffee shop, but having it right in the heart of our campus is truly a privilege.

As far as finding the perfect balance between school work and a coffee date, or grabbing a quick coffee on the way to class and sitting down for a long study session, Java’s has got it figured out, even down to details such as separating the cafe area and bar which allows you to not be distracted by every new customer as they walk in.

Java’s also boasts the largest and most diverse drink menu out of all the coffee shops we visited. If you have yet to visit this campus gem, make sure you stop by soon (you can even pay with Tiger Bucks at the RIT location) especially if you’re feeling in a rut as the walls are lined with all kinds of great artwork to inspire you.

  1. Boxcar

Boxcar prides itself in it’s great coffee and a love for fried things. If that isn’t enough to have you getting straight into your car and driving over, then how about the fact that with it’s beautifully decorated donuts, latte art, and industrial chic, white brick interior, it’s utter #instagoals?

In its location right next to the Rochester Public Market, Boxcar is the perfect destination for a brunch date or refreshments after a morning at the market. Their espresso has a much bolder taste than the other ones we tried, but it pairs quite well with one of their artisan donuts or southern-inspired chicken and waffles on a stick. It’s definitely a place you could take a friend who doesn’t like coffee as they have so many other things to choose from.

The modern industrial chic interior of Boxcar has a surprisingly light and airy feel to it and it’s the perfect place to brunch and people watch.

While you definitely could go there to do some work, it has more of a feeling of a restaurant cafe, so it wouldn’t be our first choice for exam studying – but still a great place to go if you need a coffee and great food break or if you’re in dire need of a new Instagram photo after your feed has been dead since that one time you posted at the beginning of this semester.

  1. Ugly Duck Coffee

When we were doing our research for this coffee shop round up, Ugly Duck immediately jumped on our radar when we found out that their hashtag is #getugly. How could we not check it out?!

Ugly Duck Coffee actually started as a multi-roaster pop-up espresso bar around the city of Rochester and after a year, they finally settled down in Rochester’s East End. Right when you walk in, you can immediately tell that they take their coffee very seriously.

Now, let’s address the elephant in the room, Ugly Duck does not have free wi-fi for the customers. *gasp* Why is it so high on the list then, you ask? The simple answer is that their coffee is just that good.

One of the Ugly Duck barista’s won the title of ROC’s favorite barista and we can clearly see why. After walking in, the barista promptly asked us if we needed any assistance. Pleasantly taken slightly off guard, we asked them for their recommendation, which ended in us trying The Snug  (espresso, maple syrup, Fee Brothers Molasses Bitters, steamed milk). It was by far the best espresso we had all day.

Ugly Duck’s commitment to their coffee, the peace-inducing greenery that fills the whole cafe and the fact that they have no upcharge for non-dairy milk brings them to number two on our list – truly a can’t miss location for any coffee aficionado or anyone else looking for an adventure.  

  1. Glen Edith Coffee Roasters

At top of our list is a coffee shop that we feel truly ticked every box in our expectations. Glen Edith offers coffee, Boxcar donuts (read above), lunch options, and a selection of local wine and beer.

As a third wave coffee shop it, Glen Edith seeks out direct trade (farmer to roaster) relationships to ensure the farmers are paid fair wages which then correlates with a higher quality product. Additionally, all their coffee is roasted in Rochester.

So even though you can tell they take their coffee very seriously, the environment makes it feel very inviting and not at all intimidating, like some coffee shops can seem at first glance.

On the walls, you can find beautifully hand-drawn chalk signs that clearly articulate all the differences between a latte, cappuccino, and cortado to make sure anyone can understand what they’re ordering without feeling too intimidated to ask.

The cafe is filled with people from all walks of life – mothers with kids in strollers, young professionals hustling, and friends meeting each other for their weekly catch up – everything about it makes you feel like it’s THE neighborhood hang out spot. What tops it all off is it’s great location in the Park Avenue Neighborhood – you can get coffee then walk around the beautiful streets surrounding the cafe and pop into local craft stores or other restaurants.

So whether you’re looking to find a quaint spot to study, catch up with friends, or just have delicious coffee and food, Glen Edith Coffee is your go-to.

Prepare for Thanksgiving Break at RIT

Thanksgiving break is quickly approaching and if you’re planning on staying on campus, you might want to plan ahead. The university is closing on Wednesday, November 22 at 2pm and will re-open on Saturday, November 25, which means not everything will be running as usual. Behind the Bricks has asked the essential questions for having a fun and relaxing break at RIT:

What buildings will be open?

Student Life Center and Gordon Field House

  • Open Wednesday from 6:00am to 4:00pm
  • Closed Thursday and Friday
  • Open Saturday from 8:00am to 5:00pm
  • Open Sunday from 1:00pm to 11:00pm

Aquatics Center

  • Open Wednesday from 6:45am to 8:45am and 12:00pm to 1:45pm
  • Closed Thursday and Friday
  • Open Saturday from 2:30pm to 4:30pm
  • Open Sunday from 2:30pm to 4:30pm and 7:00pm to 10:00pm

Residence Halls

  • Open during the full break
  • Laundry rooms will also be open
  • RITchie’s will be closed

Student Health Center

  • Open Wednesday from 8:00am to 2:00pm
  • Closed Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday
  • Sick over break? You can reach the after hours nurse service at (585) 475-2255

Counseling and Psychological Services

  • Open Wednesday from 8:30am to 2:00pm
  • Closed Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday
  • Alternate options include calling 1 (855) 436-1245 to speak with a mental health provider or calling (585) 475-3333 to speak with Public Safety

Center for Religious Life

  • Open Wednesday until 2pm
  • Closed Thursday, Friday, and Saturday
  • Open Sunday 8:00am to 9:00pm

Library

  • Open Wednesday from 8:00am to 2:00pm
  • Closed Thursday, Friday, and Saturday

Post Offices

  • Closed Wednesday at 2:00pm
  • Closed Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday

What staff will be on campus?

Student Health Center Staff

  • They will be here until 2:00pm on Wednesday
  • Otherwise, there are after hours care if you need immediate non-emergency assistance. The options are listed on the Student Health Center Website.

Public Safety

  • Public safety will be here 24/7 throughout the whole break
  • Check out their website for contact information or updates.

Resident Halls

  • Not all RA’s will be here on Thanksgiving Day, but they will return the weekend after.
  • Maintenance and FMS will be off Thursday, but will resume the weekend after.

Where can I eat?

Because the university is closed over Thanksgiving break, the dining halls will not be running as usual. Because there are limited options, check out this detailed list of dining hours and plan ahead for your meal plans over break.

Another option is to gather your friends and ride the RIT bus to Wegmans. Take advantage of your kitchens and have a potluck Friendsgiving.  Be sure to check the Bus Schedule on the RIT Parking and Transportation website.

Where can I take the bus off campus?

On Thursday, November 23 there will be no RIT bus service. Hours and locations for the busses on the other days of Thanksgiving Break are listed on their website. Also, check out My Bus Home for alternate ways to make it home for Thanksgiving break.

What can I do off campus?

Rochester is a cool city, go explore! There are tons of cool coffee shops to hang out at, great movie theatres right near campus, shopping, museums, and parks. Over break, there are tons of events going on around the Greater Rochester Area. If you don’t have a car, check your bus route options or carpool with a friend. Here are just a few of the events you can check out around Rochester:

  • Annie the Musical at the Kodak Center for Performing Arts on November 24 at 7:30pm, and November 25 and 26 at 2pm
  • Turkey Trot Fun Run in Webster, NY on November 23 at 10am
  • Turkey Burn Free Pilates Bootcamp Workout at MetaFITx in Pittsford, NY on Friday, November 24 at 9am

Check out visitrochester.com for more events happening in Rochester over the break.

What can I do on campus?

University Gallery

  • Closes at 1:00pm on Wednesday
  • Will reopen on Monday at 9:00am

Red Barn

  • Closed Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday
  • Open Saturday and Sunday

Ritter Open Skate

  • Closed Thursday
  • Open Friday 11:45 to 12:45pm and 8:00 to 10:00pm
  • Open Saturday 3:00 to 4:30pm and 8:00 to 10:00pm
  • Open Sunday 3:15 to 4:45pm

What are some ways I can spend my time?

Want to stay on campus over Thanksgiving break? Here are some ways that you can spend your time on campus.

  • Catch up on work and make your studying load before finals a little easier
  • Go to the RIT Men’s Basketball Tournament in the Clark Gym on Saturday, November 26 and Sunday, November 26
  • Catch up on sleep
  • Hang out with your friends on campus or make some new friends with other kids staying here over break

Have a relaxing and fun Thanksgiving Break Tigers!

International Students Day at RIT

Did you know that today is International Students Day? With students from over 100 different countries all over the world, Rochester Institute of Technology is proud to be a part of the celebration! Held annually on November 17th, International Students Day was created to commemorate the cultural diversity present in universities across the globe. With about 2,500 international students at RIT’s Rochester, New York campus, it’s pretty clear that RIT places a strong emphasis on diversity, and proudly embraces multiculturalism.

With a variety of different countries represented here at RIT’s home campus, it’s sometimes easy to forget how many other students attend RIT in other areas of the world. With campuses in Zagreb, Dubrovnik, Pristina, UAE, and Beijing, countless students are gaining a cultural experience from our university, while receiving an education that can’t be matched. For students studying abroad here in Rochester, New York, RIT provides multiple areas of support to ensure all international students have a smooth transition to life here in the United States. Well-being is a top priority, of course, both inside and outside of the classroom. With an intensive English language center, and advisors eager to ensure you have a great and memorable experience, studying abroad at RIT is made easy.

International Student Services  is an office designated to the overall success of international students here on campus. They not only provide support and answer any questions students have about immigration and adaptation, they also assist with any personal matters that may arise during students’ experiences abroad. Global Union is another resource available for international students to feel more at home whilst in Rochester. The Center for Religious Life (located in the Student Alumni Union) offers a safe area for prayer and services of all of the world’s major faiths.

If you are interested in becoming an international student yourself, studying abroad is the perfect experience for you. While students can study at any of RIT’s international locations, our university holds many partnerships with universities all over the world. With language barriers and credit transfers made easy, a stop in RIT’s Study Abroad Office can help with any questions you may have. Located above Salsarita’s in Global Village, stop on in!

5 Ways to Stay Healthy at RIT

With the holidays coming up, RIT students and faculty returning home for Thanksgiving are ready for some home-cooked meals and relaxing before the few weeks before finals. The last few weeks can be quite hectic! Sometimes students who are surrounded by constant classes, studying, homework, meetings, and maintaining a relative social life, can forget to retain a healthy lifestyle. Some students don’t believe in the need to develop healthy living styles now – but eating ramen and microwavable mac and cheese while pulling all nighters may have severe consequences to your health. Developing healthy habits in your life as a college student will only make it easier to stay healthy throughout your life. Here are five tips to stay healthy at RIT!

1. Exercise – There are plenty of ways to get exercise on campus and walking the quarter mile every day is a good start. However, the Wiedman Fitness Center in Hale-Andrews Student Life Center offers a seven day schedule to all RIT students. Even just working out for half an hour a day could improve your overall health! Hale-Andrews also offers a five multi-purpose courts, a dance and aerobics studio, an elevated 1/8 mile running track, conference and classroom space – you can even go for a swim in the Judson/Hale Aquatics Center! Check here for the hours to all the facilities provided around campus including Wiedman Fitness Center, the Judson/Hale Aquatics Center, the Red Barn, and more!

2. Eat right – Probably one of the easiest ways to stay healthy and yet a bit difficult in the life of a busy college student. You might not realize your intake of food and how it’s affecting you! A lot of college students fail to eat right – why else would everyone know the definition of the “freshman 15”? Even after freshman year, some students still struggle with maintaining a healthy diet and RIT has many healthy options at every corner of its food and dining services.

Though there is always a large availability of food here on campus – Gracie’s, The Commons, and more –  with the help of RIT’s Dining Services’ website, students can see the vast majority of healthy options that their college has to offer – with even more guidance on nutrition labelling!

3. Get on a good sleep schedule – All nighters are quite common on a college campus. Seeing students walking to class half-asleep is no fun, and teachers don’t want you to fall asleep in their classes (but some of us have done it!) All nighters are tempting when cramming for a test when the stress and anxiety levels are running high. That weekend to celebrate, you might just go stay out late until the early morning hours having fun with your friends. The goal here is to try to not make that a habit. Sure we all have like to have fun and we all sometimes have to cram for a test, but trying to make a decent sleep schedule is hard for a lot of college students. Students aresaid to need at least seven to nine hours of sleep at night. You might be thinking that there is no way you’d ever get that much sleep based on your homework and cram sessions, but sleep deprivation can lead to decreased brain function, fatigue, headaches and weight loss or gain. Losing out on a good night’s sleep is never the right answer! Instead, try to stay on a schedule by avoiding caffeinated drinks before bed. Keep track of the hours you sleep with an app on your phone which can help you regulate your nightly routines. Best of all, even if you’re feeling tired during the day – check out RIT’s own Nap Map to find out the best place on campus to take a short power nap to help you get through the day!

4. Hydrate – Drink your water! It’s a sentence we’ve heard plenty of times yet many choose those caffeinated and sugary drinks to fuel them throughout the day. However, water replenishes your body – keeping you more focused and energized throughout the day. All of that sugar and caffeine can wear your body down, making it more difficult to focus and stay awake as it only gives your short bursts of energy. Drinking water will improve your overall health and keep you moving throughout your day so find a reusable water bottle and take it to class!

5. Relax – Probably the most difficult thing to do as a college student. Relaxing never seems to be an option but the truth is, is that you need to take moments to just breath. Taking breaks and having downtime is essential to staying healthy. If you’re stressed from studying, take a moment to read a book or hang out with your friends, even take a nap! Stress management is like time management – just another thing students learn as they grow. Stress and anxiety is a major problem in young adults and especially college students, which can be detrimental to your health. Take a moment in every day to just step back and breath! Find ways to help yourself relax – it can do wonders for your physical and mental health.

The Weekend Playbook: Hockey and Acting

The RIT Players performing in Clue.
The RIT Players performing in Clue!

Fall semester is quickly coming to a close as finals week approaches. If you’re like me, you’re probably  starting to stress out just a little bit. Why don’t you take some time this weekend to do something fun and get your mind off the looming end-of-semester deadlines? This weekend, there are hockey games Friday and Saturday, as well as a theatrical performanceby the RIT Players!

rithockey

This weekend, the Tigers will be taking on Bentley University in a double header that’s sure to excite fans. After kicking off the season to a fairly rough start, RIT has come back and is now on a four game unbeaten streak. With this weekend’s double header, the Men’s Tigers are hoping to increase that unbeaten streak to six games. Judging by the Tigers’ past series versus Bentley (17-9-2), there’s a good chance that they’ll pull it off. The first  game starts at 7 p.m. Friday and the second game will be held Saturday at the same time. Both games will be broadcast on Time Warner, as well as WITR 89.7 and witr.rit.edu. For more information on this season’s hockey schedule, visit rithockey.com. The last hockey game at the Polisseni Center sold out, so let’s see if we can do it again this weekend! The Women’s Hockey team will be playing at home against Colgate Friday from 2-4 p.m., and tickets for that game are free to students.

laramie project

If you’re looking for something to do this weekend other than hockey, the RIT Players will perform their main stage show, The Laramie Project. The Laramie Project follows a theater group that travels to a town in Wyoming where a gay student, Matthew Shepard, was murdered because of his sexual identity. This documentary-style play beautifully captures the reactions of town members who were affected by Matthew’s death. The play will be performed Friday and Saturday from 8-10 p.m. in the 3D Projection Lab (in the basement of Booth). Tickets are free, so come support the RIT Players’ biggest show of the semester. For more information on this performance, check out their event page.

 

The Weekend Playbook: Hip-Hop and Soccer

seanforbes

As Week 8 is wraps up, you may be looking for something to do this weekend. Luckily, there are plenty of choices for everyone. While last weekend was heavy on hockey games, this weekend has some more variety, including a hip-hop performance by RIT alum and YouTube star Sean Forbes and a women’s soccer game.

Sean Forbes rose to YouTube fame since graduating from CAST in 2008. His first hit video, “I’m Deaf,” has been viewed over 700,000 times on YouTube, leading him to be featured on several television shows and articles. Forbes’ performance this Friday will hopefully be another great show among his hundreds of performances to deaf and hearing audiences across the country. To give you a sense of how talented Forbes is, check out his YouTube channel. The concert starts at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Panara Theatre. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the NTID Box Office. For more information, check out ntid.rit.edu/theatre/

tigersports_cmyk

If that isn’t quite your speed support your #18 ranked Lady Tigers soccer team as they take on the Ithaca College Bombers. The women’s team has been on quite the roll this season getting off to an 8-1-1 start with their only loss coming two weeks ago against our hometown rivals U of R. The Bombers are also off to an impressive start at 6-3-1 and are sure to put our Tigers to the test. The game takes place this Sunday at noon in Tiger Stadium.