Long Island accents are supposed to be thick and palpable. But Samantha Janosick knows that hers isn’t as noticeable as it used to be.
She moved west to attend the University at Buffalo when she was a budding college student with lofty dreams and a strong accent. It’s now going on eight years, and Janosick has since graduated with her master’s degree and dropped some of that classic New York City enunciation.
There wasn’t anything special about Buffalo at the time she applied to UB, she said. But the promise of a quality education at a reputable institution was enough to sway her. She signed up for a master’s program in social work, knowing full well she’d be in the Queen City for at least five years.
“To be honest, Buffalo felt like home from the first moment I got here,” the 26-year-old said. “After graduation, I found a job and was so passionate about the work that I was doing in the community that it just felt right to stay.”
Name: Sam Janosick
Current location: North Buffalo
Previous locations: Long Island
Love most about Buffalo: The neighbor-like culture; so much to do.
Miss most about Long Island: Family. Oh, and bagels.
Affordable housing and a lower cost of living were two of the main factors that contributed to Janosick’s decision to stay. And for young professionals like her, Buffalo is also rife with social events and opportunities to connect with others.
“Every weekend there are concerts, festivals or events, and great places to eat,” she said. “There isn’t much to do for people my age in Long Island. It’s so expensive, too. I don’t think I could do a fraction of what I do here if I lived back there.”
That’s not to say Janosick loves absolutely everything about Buffalo. She admits the long winter months have been quite an adjustment, especially after 2014’s "Wall of Snow" storms. But she does enjoy snowboarding at Kissing Bridge.
The snow also reminds her to look on the bright side and appreciate the things she’s come to love about Buffalo, like summer events at Canalside or the community itself.
“The most unique thing about Buffalo is the small-town, big-city feel,” she said. “You don’t go anywhere without someone knowing someone, or making a new friend. People are kind, are willing to help each other, and are dedicated to making this city great. You don’t find that in many other cities.”
Eight years ago, Janosick set out to go to college. She didn’t realize it at the time, but she was also setting the foundation for building a new life and home.
“For me, it feels like I grew up in Buffalo. It is the first place I had my independence and the first place I really invested in. The way I see it, Buffalo is growing, and I've grown and want to continue to grow with it.”
Even though she misses her family back in Long Island and the taste of a warm, freshly made bagel, Janosick knows that they are only a short, inexpensive flight away. Her family will always welcome her home with open arms — even if her accent is now slightly muddled with a Western New York twang.
If you or anyone you know has a story to tell about moving back or to Buffalo, or about moving away, contact LynsD21@gmail.com.