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New York Term Update

New York is so close. I can almost feel it. While I'm mentally preparing for this adventure, I'm also still working on securing an internship.

I've applied at several places and now I'm scheduling interviews. It's exciting because I know all my hard work over the past two years in the classroom and in clubs on campus is really paying off. I am a qualified candidate!

We also had a meeting a few weeks ago, which gave me more details about our stay. Steven, the director of the program (and also a theater professor on campus) has lots of friendly tips and pieces of advice. I've also been talking to past Coe students who have been on the term to gain their insight. It's slowly setting in that this is finally happening. It's exciting.

That's all I can really say. Over and over again. I'm pumped.


Papers, papers, papers

School work is truly taking over my life. This is what happens when I take four writing emphasis classes in one semester. Whoops. Oh well, you should know by now that I love to write.

I'm currently knee deep in research for two ten page papers. The first is for my Honors class. It is about novels about the Vietnam War by Vietnamese authors. It's a fascinating topic. I've read two pretty influential novels by the so called "victors" and then have read lots of criticism about American fiction on the Vietnam War as well as criticism on Vietnamese fiction. This paper will be my final project and assignment in this class. I completed a rough draft before Thanksgiving Break and now am working on the revisions. Next week, I have to give a short presentation to my class about how I conducted my research and what I learned. It will be pretty informal but it will be nice to share everything I've been learning about to my peers.

My second paper is for my 18th century literature class. It's on a short story by Eliza Haywood called Fantomina. It's a great story and if you haven't read it, you probably should. A quick and fun read, I promise you. But I'm taking about disguise and gender roles of the time. I've just started researching; I've read a lot but now I need to start fine tuning this research and turning it into a paper.

So needless to say, I'm keeping busy. But I enjoy it, I promise. I feel that I've evolved as a writer since I was a freshman. Both these topics interest me and I know that I wil turn in fantastic papers. Might get a little stress in the next three weeks but hey, it will be okay.

Three weeks left!

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. For me, it was nice to go home and see my family. I of course ate too much food and chose to sleep instead of braving the Black Friday crowds.

But that doesn't mean I didn't do any homework over break, believe me, I was busy with readings and other various assignments.

Because I have three weeks left. Two weeks of class and then finals week. Really, really, really hard to believe. Then it will be Winter Break and then in January I will not head west but instead, east for NEW YORK CITY.


Yeah. So everyone on campus is feeling the daunting approach of finals. We are buckling down and ready to go!


Thanksgiving Break!

It's break here on campus and I'm getting ready to head back to Wisconsin. Can't wait to take a little breather before finals!

I'll write more later, but just wanted to check in!


XY Unlimited Adventure!

If you've been a faithful reader for a while, you might remember this past March I made a trip up to Minnesota. I went to NACA, a conference were student activity committees got together to network and also to book events for the upcoming school year. As treasurer, I got the opportunity to go along and see what SAC does. It was a fantastic experience, I learned a lot, and saw some amazing performers.

My favorite performance though was probably the band XY Unlimited. They were adorable and just fantastic. They were the roving band which meant they spent one day just bopping around, serenading people with their music. Whitney and I spent a fair amount of time at their booth, chatting them up. We ended up booking them and they performed on Wednesday.

Needless to say, I was pumped. Real pumped. After Senate, I met Whitney and the band in the PUB and we headed to Panchero's for pre-show dinner. It was nice to see them again and chat with them. They are four great guys doing what they love, playing music.

After dinner and a quick detour to Best Buy and the Guitar Center, it was back to campus for their performance.

And they did not disappoint.
Four part, beautiful vocal harmony.

Ahhh life.

So the video I just posted is definitely one of my favorite songs they sang. This was not recorded at Coe, but I needed to post something so you could hear how awesome they are! 

Post concert, they were swamped with brand new fans. Once everyone cleared out, Whitney and I got our required picture. I've posted both pictures, the one from NACA and then the one from now! :) What a perfect way to end my Wednesday.



A slow start, but a good day

Happy Tuesday!

Thanksgiving Break is within reach, but much will need to be done before I can head back to Wisconsin for a nice little break.

Today was a little bit of a slow start. I've had to stay up pretty late the past couple of nights working on outlines and plans for two research papers (Honors and 18th century literature) and so sleep has not been a consistant thing. Because of this, mornings have been a little slow to get going.

When I woke up, a little later than expected, I knew I better get going. I had lunch with my fellow junior clarinetist, Elise, at Zio Johno's, which is right across First Avenue. It was delicious and so nice to catch up with Elise! Just like me, she has been extremely busy with her music education major classes and other musical activities.

After lunch, I received an email to set up my first potential interview for New York this spring. It's at a literary magazine called A Public Space and I'm quite excited. I've been working hard at applying to a variety of companies on top of homework, work, and club involvement. Nice to see one starting to move forward!

Then it was homework time until my weekly Budget and Finance committee meeting. We are currently gearing up for Budget and Finance Day (December 1st). I'm excited but also will be glad once it's over (that means I gain A LOT of time back in my life). But in all seriousness, I love being the Student Senate Treasurer. It allows me to work with so many great clubs and help them do amazing things. I also like to think I help to empower clubs by making the whole receiving money part less stressful!

It wouldn't be a day without a little coffee and so I hit up Starbucks with two fellow English majors, Millie and Ashley. We have a short explication on the novel we are working with for our final paper due tomorrow, so we drank coffee, gave each other conferences, and finished our papers.

Now, I'm back in the library, hard at work at blogging and other various homework. Shouldn't be too late of a night; my body clearly needs some rest!


Campus Visit Day Recap!

Boy, did Coe have a great Saturday!

My blog cards!
First, at 9 AM, there were so many fantastic prospective students and their families on campus. It was nice to meet so many interesting students who are thinking about being Kohawks.

As always, I love Campus Visit Days. There is just that buzz in the air. When people were checking in on the main floor of the library, I was on the second floor, at the blogging table. Yes, you heard right, a blogging table. It's a great way to promote our blog and we even have a nifty business card to give students. This time, we were conveniently placed next to the Writing Center display so I got to do double duty. What I didn't realize when I was talking to prospective students was that many of them would end up being in my tour group!

But before the tour, there was a panel. I started doing panels during Iowa's Private College Week and now I can't get enough of them. It's just fun to interact with the students and their parents and it allows me to share my passion for Coe with a large group of people. This time, the panel had current students, professors, and even an alum who was here for the football game. It was a fun group and they asked a lot of really great questions. I even got to talk about New York term since I'm getting pumped up for it. Literally cannot wait for January.

Anywho, once the panel was over, it was tour time. My escort today was Jordan, who was actually one of students I worked with last fall in my role of a writing fellow. I've seen her several times on campus since I was her tutor, but it was nice to be reunited with her for a longer period of time. As I mentioned earlier, I ended up touring all English/Creative Writing/Writing/Theater students, which was perfect!

After a successful tour (it was pretty nice outside), I dropped them off for lunch and then went to do my own thing. My own thing consisted of homework and lots of it.

Other good Coe news, our football team beat Central today so we ended our regular season UNDEFEATED. Yep, true life. Selection for the NCAA DIII tournament is today so we will see where Coe is placed. Exciting, exciting.


Thursday Afternoon Poetry Reading

Dan Poppick. Courtesy of Thermos
What I love about our English department is that we enjoy having events throughout the semester to show what our peers and professors are doing. Last Thursday was one of those events.

For the longest time, our resident poet was Ann Struthers. She retired and our new poetry professor, Dan Poppick, has been having a great time on campus so far. I actually interviewed him for my journalism class. He has a fascinating story and he is also an excellent poet. I'm telling you all this because Dan gave a poetry reading on Thursday.

He read to a pretty full house. Instead of standing behind a podium, he stood in the middle and used gestures and movement to enhance his reading. At first, he was a little nervous but as he kept reading, he became quite comfortable.

It was nice Thursday afternoon study break and it was cool to hear some of his own work.

Since I've been doing so much writing this semester, I'll also include the profile I wrote for my journalism class. Hopefully that gives you a little more insight into Dan!

Dan Poppick had not planned on being a poet. He was a fiction writer as an undergraduate but often had difficulties writing short stories. In his last semester as an undergraduate at Kenyon College, Poppick took a poetry class on a whim.

It was a class that changed his life.

The class was taught by G.C. Waldrep who was a visiting professor. While in the class Poppick got over his writer’s block. “I could write again,” Poppick said. “Writing just became another thing.”   

From there, Poppick decided to escape, going to a beautiful place where he knew no one so he could just write. This mysterious place was Missoula, Montana. Poppick secured a crappy job and spent six months there. Although he faced a dreary winter, Poppick got a lot out of the adventure. “I did write,” said Poppick. “It was a very tense experience, and I came out of it a little shaken. But I got through it and it proved to me that I could make a place for writing.” 

It was this experience that helped Poppick realize he could become a poetry professor. “It’s the only job that feels like a worthy cause,” he said. 

Poppick was hired this past year as an adjunct assistant professor of English at Coe College with his emphasis being poetry. He gives off the stereotypical “poet” vibe. Embracing plaid, Poppick knows how to dress well, complimented with a well-trimmed beard. He is easy-going, speaking quietly yet speaking with a passion for poetry and teaching. Within his first month on campus, Poppick has become part of Coe’s academic culture. 

He is teaching a poetry workshop along with a topics in creative writing class. A current student said he is an engaging professor and brings unique material to read and discuss. They also said he keeps the class up to date with literary events happening in the area, encouraging his students to take advantage of these opportunities. 

A typical class with Poppick consists of one-third talking about the craft of poetry and two-thirds workshopping the student’s poems. The class starts with a conversation assigned poems. Poppick’s selections are usually by post-war poets written in the 19th and 20th century. 

Throughout the semester Poppick will adapt the assigned poems based on his students as he gets to know them. This creates a freestyle atmosphere which is exactly what Poppick wants. He has a specific emotion he wants his students to have when reading the assigned poems. “I want to move away from a poem that leaves somebody feeling warm and fuzzy,” Poppick said. “I want poetry to be a striking experience.” 

After an adequate discussion, Poppick moves into the workshop portion of the class. Two students are workshopped at a time. When asked why Poppick explained, “I like poetry that can be in a conversation.” By having two students with different styles of writing workshopped at the same time, the discussion can bring out the quirks and qualities of each set of poems.  

Poppick is enjoying his job and working with Coe students. “I’ve been most impressed that Coe students seem to be game for just about anything,” he said. “Even when my students are resistant to a poem, they are willing to talk about why they are resistant.” 

Being the only poetry professor on campus is not always easy -- Coe lacks aspiring poets. “I would love if there would be a vibrant poetry community that was open to heated arguments,” Poppick said. “That’s where the magical side of learning happens. When you are arguing about something at three in the morning.”   

It is clear Poppick wants to make a difference. When asked about what he would like to accomplish in his first year, Poppick said, “If I can be here for a year and know that people are talking about poetry after the class ends, then I know I will have done my job.” 


What are you doing this weekend?

Yes, yes, it's only Monday but hey, the weekend is fast approaching. I know that my weekend will consist of homework (lots of paper writing) but also a fun Admission adventure. Campus visit day! If you'd like to see campus on a Saturday morning, this Saturday would be the day to do it! Sign up here!

Not only will you be able to meet a bunch of Coe students, hear from professors, take a tour, but you can even check out our last home football game. Our football team is doing fantastically this year, winning conference last weekend. We are playing Central and it should be a great game!

If you'd like to visit campus but this Saturday doesn't work, please sign up for an individual visit. Come sit in on a class, take a tour, have lunch with a student, meet with a professor, hang out with a sports team, and even stay overnight! It will be a lot of fun, I promise you! :)

On a fun and slightly unrelated note, Campus Visit Day is just as much fun as going into a mine in England's Lake District and wearing cool hard harts with lamps! See picture below for complete understanding!