Three years are almost done, with just one to go for Steve Lomaka of Henrico, Virginia, a junior majoring in business information technology in the Pamplin College of Business.
“Freshman year feels like forever ago,” Lomaka said. “I’m trying to take it a day at a time and not think too far ahead.”
Lomaka is the second oldest sibling in Virginia Tech’s only set of quadruplets to enroll at the university. Kate, majoring in human nutrition, foods, and exercise in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is the youngest; followed by Chris, majoring in building construction and real estate in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies; Steve; and Greg, majoring in statistics in the College of Science. Virginia Tech News has been following up with each sibling throughout their time at the university.
While Steve Lomaka said he and his siblings try to get together regularly, the demands of their junior year curriculum, extracurricular activities, and jobs have made it tough this year. The brothers get together whenever possible to play basketball and recently started dropping into fitness group classes that Kate teaches.
“Since it’s been hard for us to all get together, Kate told us to come to her spin class. I was reluctant because cardio is not my thing. But after she said everyone gets one free class, I decided to give it a try,” Lomaka said. “I ended up having a blast and we got dinner together afterward.”
Lomaka squeezes in that family time with a busy academic load, activities, and a job as a resident assistant. “I have around 30 residents so it’s awesome being able to engage with them and teach them various things about campus. My favorite part is getting to talk and work with so many different kinds of people.”
To keep everything on track, Lomaka uses skills he learned at the Student Success Center. “My freshman year I went to a time management seminar, and it talked about classifying things you have to do into tiers. Have your big projects take priority. I’ve started using a planner and keeping it updated to balance everything. It’s helped me stay focused and on track.”
His focus right now is trying to find an internship for the summer, looking to gain valuable skills and business connections that could help him gain a job after graduation next year.
Lomaka said it’s hard to believe his final year at Virginia Tech is here, but he is glad he made the decision to come. “It was a no brainer when I got in. I submitted my acceptance as soon as I got my letter. The community here is like nowhere else. It really feels like everyone here is just one big family.”
For the thousands of newly admitted Hokies who will make their way to Blacksburg this fall, Lomaka shared advice he gives to his residents.
“You have to go outside your comfort zone. It’s hard to do it, but once you do, you’re glad you did it. Try to have those uncomfortable moments. A talk that’s a little awkward at first can lead to a great friendship,” said Lomaka. “That’s really what college is about – we come here for classes and to get a degree, but that’s just the surface. It’s the experience and what happens outside of class too.”
One experience outside of class that Lomaka won’t forget was getting to play basketball with President Timothy D. Sands during an event for the presidential installation. “That was fun, though it was tricky to figure out how I should guard him. You don’t want to hurt the president,” Lomaka laughed. “But, he was really good.”