If you’ve attended a Rutgers football game, you’ve heard Scott Sincoff singing. If you have tuned in to RU-tv, you’ve seen him delivering the local weather report. Sincoff, a fifth-year senior in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences on the Rutgers–New Brunswick Campus, seems to be everywhere, doing everything.
Choose Your Own Adventure
The Big Takeaway
Come Prepared to Forge Your Path
“I admit, when I first came to Rutgers I was a little scared by the size of the place. It was so big. But I decided if I pursued my interests, I could create my own niche and make a small Rutgers for me while benefiting from the things a large university offers, the mind-boggling diversity of the place.”
His plan worked: he is a
- double major in environmental policy and journalism,
- resident assistant, and
- social media researcher.
Through his Rutgers networks, he landed an internship at the Weather Channel, traveled to Italy with the Glee Club, visited Israel with Rutgers Hillel, and worked as a DJ at a campus radio station.
Oh, and as a member of the Glee Club, he is getting the opportunity to organize the 2014 Intercollegiate Men's Choruses Conference, which Rutgers is hosting in March.
Scott's Tips for Success at Rutgers
Well, Scott, how did you do all that? And how can someone else?
Get Excited By the Academics
- Pursue a subject that intrigues you.
“I knew since I was 6 that I wanted to discover more about the weather and how it affects people. While I originally thought I’d go out of state (Scott is from Monroe, New Jersey) for college, Rutgers became the frontrunner as I researched schools with great meteorology programs.”
- Be open to new fields of study.
“A freshman seminar on weather, climate and television opened my eyes to the communications component of meteorology. I found I really enjoyed taking the complex topic of weather and figuring out how to explain what’s happening and how it will impact people in a way anyone can understand.”
Conduct research and participate in internships.
“I’ve combined my two interests, in meteorology and communications, in a research project I’m undertaking through the George H. Cook Scholars program. I’m looking at how people use Twitter during extreme weather events.
“A Rutgers alumnus who works at the Weather Channel as a meteorologist showed me how to apply for an internship there. Working at the channel was absolutely amazing. I learned so much from beginner forecasting skills to how to write stories for broadcast. My favorite part of it was the rush of getting everything ready in time when it was just a producer and myself working on the 4:30 a.m. live show.”
- Find fellow enthusiasts.
“I came to Rutgers knowing I wanted to sing. My first year, at the Fall Involvement Fair, I made a beeline to the Glee Club table. I signed up for an audition and was lucky enough to get in. It’s been an amazing experience, these guys have become like brothers to me.”
- Develop a new area of interest.
“A good friend of mine was working at 90.3 The CORE, one of the campus radio stations, and asked if I’d be willing to give a weather report. I really didn’t know much about radio when I started, but she taught me how to write and edit stories for the medium. I contributed weather and environmental pieces. At one point, I even had my own show for a few semesters. I’m glad she asked, I learned a lot.”
- Use your talents.
“I’m in my third year serving as a resident assistant. My R.A. my freshman year, Gianni, was so confident and competent, she inspired me to apply for the position myself. I had been a camp counselor and enjoyed the idea of helping others. I’ve gotten so much out of the experience—and I hope I’ve guided some people on their way.”
- Support a good cause.
“Since I began at Rutgers, I have annually participated in the Big Chill run and have supported Rutgers University Dance Marathon. The support that Dance Marathon gives the Embrace Kids Foundation, which aids children with cancer and blood disorders, helped a friend of mine in his time of need in 2009.”
Take Advantage of the Diversity
- Strengthen your own roots.
“Through Rutgers Hillel, I participated in Birthright Israel over a winter break, hiking and traveling through Israel. It was a great way to explore my heritage.”
And learn about other cultures.
“Just by living here, you meet people from every background. Students on my floor bring with them so many different traditions and customs and holidays. Just hanging out on the floor, talking and getting to know people, I’ve learned a lot about different ethnic groups, sexual orientations, and religions.
"At a program we organized last year, one of my residents taught the entire floor the traditions of belly dancing and henna and then taught an introduction class on how to belly dance. It was a really fun time and I learned a lot from it too.”
Define The Space FOr Yourself
- Find your Rutgers spot.
“I really love walking through the Loree Woods and past Passion Puddle on the Cook/Douglass Campus. That’s a real ‘Rutgers spot' for me. I also love McKinney Hall, where I rehearse with my brothers in the Glee Club.”
Show Your Pride
“When I go back home and see my friends who are attending places like Syracuse and Penn State, they say ‘You guys have real pride. Rutgers people seem so excited by the place.’ I say ‘Yes, we do, because we really like it here.’ ”