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2013 Recap

I say this every year, but it's so hard to believe that 365 days have gone by and 2013 is almost done. It will probably take me a good month of writing "13" and then attempting to make a 3 look like a 4.

In a classic Writing Center reflection moment, When I look back on 2013, I see a lot of great things. This was by far an amazing year. A lot of it probably had to do with being in New York for the first four months, but the fun definitely didn't stop in April. So here it is, my stroll back through 2013, I've even included some photo slideshows. Enjoy!

I must begin my 2013 recap with New York Term. I managed to write 85 blog posts during my time in the city (that's almost one a day). My internships were out of this world and I'm so incredibly thankful for those opportunities. I also saw some of the best theater, cinema, art, music, and dance NYC had to offer. I became closer to many people on the trip and had some pretty neat professors to show off all that New York had to offer. I was also incredibly fortunate to be near my aunt, uncle, and their family, allowing some great memories with them.

After New York, I came back home for a little bit before embarking on another adventure. This time it was to Germany and Poland. I spent a little under two weeks exploring World War II and Holocaust memorials (dark tourism as I learned on the trip). While it was a tough subject, I was lucky enough to have an amazing professor and solid group to make it a memorable May.

Then it was summertime! I spent my summer at Coe, for the second year in a row. Not only did I have fun at work, helping plan Iowa Private College Week and getting ready for the first-years to arrive on campus, I also had a great apartment! I lived with three other fantastic friends of mine and had the opportunity to become really close with Millie and Hayleigh. We spent almost all of our free time together (and got into lots of shenanigans) and it made for my best summer yet!

And then it was time for senior year. It has already gone by way way way too fast. I had the honor of being on Homecoming Court, ate dinner with the Board of Trustees for being a Clark Merit scholar, had dinner with my professors, kept building relationships with my friends on campus, and learned a lot in my upper level (and lab science) classes. I also started to figure out what I want to do post-graduation. Still waiting to hear from the Fulbright Committee and also began my graduate school search.

I can only imagine what 2014 will bring!


A Few Blogs to Check Out!

Hi everyone!

With the end of the year winding down, everyone starts taking stock in what happened in the previous year. We attempt to catch up with everyone we got behind on so we can start fresh for the new year. I'll have my own end of the year post coming soon (Tuesday to be exact), but I figured if we're catching up on stuff, it might be a good time to check out some other great Kohawk blogs.

If you've read my blog this past year, you know what a life-changing experience my time in New York City was. The opportunity to grow as a professional (at both the New York Public Library and at the Paley Center for Media) as well as a person was out of this world. So, the blogs I'm about to list are from other study abroad kids.

So this semester, Coe featured three great study abroad blogs. First up, is my friend (and fellow senior) Reid. He studied in Scotland for the semester and he had an amazing time. I was always so jealous of the photos he shared because the landscape was stunning. It often reminded me of the Lake District and of course, made me miss it more. Then, the other two bloggers from this past fall both participated in Coe's New York Term twin sister (fraternal of course), Washington DC term. Just like NYC, the students that go to DC have an internship, take a class, and attend cultural events. Brianna and Hayden, both juniors had internships and seemed to have a fantastic time.

As these students come back to campus, other students are leaving for their own great adventures in 2014. Fellow Writing Center consultant and junior English major, Julia, is headed to London and Florence with an Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM) program. Another good friend of mine, Peter, is headed to Asia for Coe's Asia Term. And finally, Max (who I've gotten to know through Senate and the Presidential Search Committee) is doing his student teaching in Chicago through another ACM program.

You'll definitely want to check these blogs out and I hope with some time on your hands at the end of the year, you'll stop on by and read about their adventures or upcoming travels!


I'm Published!

Happy holidays!

Hope the holiday season is treating you well and you're not dealing with too much snow. In Wisconsin, we were fortunate enough to have a white Christmas. The cold temperatures and accumulating snow have made the weather perfect for ice skating and lots of shoveling.

But the point of this post is not to describe the weather in Mt. Horeb. Instead, my good news is that I was published on an online blog.


The blog is called the Silver Tongue Times, Rhetorical criticism for the engaged citizen. Basically, it's a blog run by rhetoric scholars committed to explaining cultural messages in today's world through the lens of rhetoric. The blog aims to explain rhetoric in layman terms, so that anyone, no matter their knowledge of the "great rhetors" (think Plato, Aristotle, Gorgias, etc), they can understand what the author is doing in their message.

I found this blog through my Rhetorical Theory and Practice class. Taught by Jane Nesmith, a professor who I've had before, we examined what rhetoric is and how we use it today. It was an excellent class and I definitely learned a lot. One of the overarching messages from this class was that rhetoric allows you to be a spectator of a message. It allows you to step back and see how the moving parts are working together. So think of watching a sporting event, like baseball, football, soccer, etc. For most of those events, you are sitting above the field, looking down on the game. You can see each individual player and watching their singular movements and then the movements of the team as a whole.

Our final project of the semester was to write a post that fit the submission guidelines for the Silver Tongue Times. We had to take an article/speech or video and write about what the rhetor was doing and if they were doing it effectively. I chose an article I found at one of my favorite online websites, The Slate. It was an article that was pro-selfie (you know, the popular thing to do on social media now a days. It's also an official word, thanks to the Oxford English Dictionary). So I wrote the piece and thought, "Why not submit?"

I emailed the piece to the blog and heard back fairly quickly. Matt, the founding editor, said they would love to publish the piece. We emailed back and forth with some revisions and submitting a brief bio and they published it on Monday.

My article is "The Selfie Culture: Where A Picture Is Worth A Million Likes" (yeah, you should definitely click on this). I'm really proud with how it turned out and so far, my family and friends have really enjoyed it. Let me know what you think!

I really enjoyed writing this and analyzing current culture is something I like doing in my spare time (when I can find it). I hope to write some more articles for the Silver Tongue Times and Winter Break is the perfect time to do that!


Sign Up Now For Scholarship Weekend!

I don't know about you, but currently, a steady snow is falling in Mt. Horeb. It's the sort of snow that reminds me of February 2010.

I know, call me crazy, but lightly falling snow reminds me of visiting Coe during Scholarship Weekend. It's a special weekend where admitted students can compete for additional scholarship money in their department of interest. Don't worry, if you interview for one area and end up coming to Coe and majoring in something else, your scholarship still stays. Woot!

For me, Scholarship Weekend was a huge part of my college search. I got to see Coe in full swing, sit in on several classes, meet with several professors, and meet so many great Coe students. I met my roommate of three years, Heidi, in a History of English Literature class with Gina, and also met Whitney when she was on a panel in the Clark Racquet Center. When we walked over to the panel, it was snowing, and the boy I was walking next to was from Texas and had never seen snow like that before.

It was crazy.

So as I continue to get sentimental about that weekend several years ago, YOU should go sign up for it. Make some memories! Learn more about Coe.

And remember, if you come, you'll get to meet me and all my other Kohawk friends.


Heyo Mt. Horeb!

I'm writing this blog post while sitting at my kitchen Mt. Horeb.

That's right, my finals are over, I've survived them and now I'm home for a couple of weeks. Finals weren't nearly as bad as I expected. I think that means I was prepared to take them (or write them as demonstrated in the originally 15 page turned 25 page paper I turned in).

And this past week, I accomplished a lot more than taking two tests and finishing off one 25 page paper. I also...

  • Completed my sixth semester of clarinet juries. I played the second movement from Robert Schumann's Fantasy Pieces. While the link I've attached features a cello as the solo instrument, it's such a beautiful piece, I wanted you to hear it. So just imagine the cello magically turns into a clarinet and there I am, playing away! 
  • Mailed out contributor copies of the newest issue of the Coe Review. I can't wait for the authors to get a hold of the issue. Over break, I plan to upload the issue to our website and post some picture from our publication release. Woot! 
  • Watched my roommate, Emily, and several other senior theater majors perform in a student-created and student-produced show for their senior seminar class. It was about body image and very well done. They performed shortly after I turned in my final paper, so it was a nice celebration of sorts. 
  • Had dinner on two separate nights with two of my professors. Wednesday night I ate dinner with Melissa, my thesis advisor, and on Thursday, my sophomore year globalization class had dinner at our professor's house (Kimberly). Both nights were fantastic and such a good way to end the semester. I think this also highlights the strengths of our professors at Coe. They want to know you as a person and this more casual setting allowed us to talk about lots of different topics. I think these relationships we build with our professors are out of this world and help to make Coe feel even more like a family. 
And now I'm back with my Fargo family. It's good to be back and to have a break. Of course, I've got lots of writing to do and can't wait to dig into some books for fun! I've got a few posts I want to write, so don't worry, this blog will be active for the next couple of weeks. 

Happy holidays! 


Last Week of Classes Update

Earlier this afternoon, I had a conference with Dr. Bob for our Writing Center staff development class. Our "final" project of sorts was an online e-Portfolio, a way to preserve our writing during our time at Coe. Another important aspect of this portfolio deals with much self-reflection. While we were looking at my portfolio, Dr. Bob clicked on a link of this blog and I realized I hadn't posted since my 500th post celebration.


So this is my mega post to make up for that. I had a great Thanksgiving Break (although I had lots of work to keep up with so it wasn't much of a break). When I got back to campus, it was December 1st and therefore, time to start gearing up for finals. This past week was my final week of classes and other than one class tomorrow, it's time for finals.

Here's a recap of this past week. In terms of my classes, I took my final astronomy test and kept working on my English seminar paper (a 15 page paper on Toni Morrison's novel, Paradise). These and a few other projects kept me plenty busy and up late at night. 

On Friday we had the Coe Review publication release party for our poetry issue. The issue came in on Wednesday and looked fantastic. I am incredibly proud of this issue and was thrilled to show it off on Friday. Our release was in the PUB, included free coffee drinks, snacks, and a poetry reading. 

A very excited me with the poetry issue
On Friday night, the final Blindspot of 2013 was happening and I went to support my friend, Ariana, who was performing. I also took part in the late-night movie. It's an event sponsored by our Student Activities Committee (SAC) where they essentially "rent out" the movie theater to show a current movie to Coe students, FOR FREE. Yes, for free! The movie was Hunger Games: Catching Fire. I went with Ariana, Peter, Paulina, and Ryan. It was a good group and I enjoyed the movie. Having read the books, I knew the plot and thought it was a good adaptation.

Saturday was composed of working on my seminar paper. Alison P and I escaped to Panera for unlimited coffee and hours of productivity. Ariana, Alison P., and I hung out Saturday night, taking a break from homework and overthinking our finals schedule. 

Then, this morning, I participated in my very first Lumberjack Festival. It was an event sponsored by one of our fraternities on campus, Phi Kappa Tau. They were raising money for Serious Fun, an organization helping kids with serious illnesses. During November, several of the guys had participated in No Shave November so the main event was bidding on shaving their impressive beards. On top of that, the guys had made an excellent brunch: pancakes, sausage, and eggs. After eating, we could play some games and just enjoy a Sunday morning. Flannel was the outfit of choice so the PUB was packed with various colors of flannel and plaid print. It was a lot of fun and for a good cause, so what's not to love?
Angela and I in our flannel!
The rest of my Sunday consisted of homework in the Writing Center; I found a spot, camped out, and had a lot of fun. We also saw how many people who work in the Writing Center supported Lumberjack Fest because of this pretty photo:

A bunch of pretty good lucking consultants
It's been a good week. Still lots to do between tonight and Thursday, when my final paper is due. I'm sure it will go by fast, and I'll be sure to keep you up to date.