Thursday, December 29, 2011

Formspring Q: Being a Psych Major

Q: How many psych classes have you taken at smcvt so far? Did you sit in on a class or talk to a current psych major or prof before deciding on smcvt? Do you have a track? Sorry for all the questions, just got accepted and want to be really thorough lol!

I took General Psych for my first semester, and I was unable to get into a psych class for my next semester. I was freaking out a bit that it would affect my overall major schedule, but it turns out that it's common to not have a Psych class for the spring semester. My advisor told me that if I were to get into a psych class spring semester, that I would actually be ahead in the program. I was aiming to get into Research Methods I, but my advisor told me students usually take that sophomore year so they can take Research Methods I fall semester and Research Methods II spring semester.

As for how I decided on SMC, I went on a tour at first to see the campus. I immediately felt like I could see myself going here, so I applied and continued to research the school more. After finding out that I was accepted, I was soon invited to an Accepted Students Day. The schedule involved breakfast, a tour, a panel with current students, and an opportunity to meet professors in your potential major. Susan Kuntz, a faculty member of the Psych department, was informing us about the major requirements, minor requirements, and the rest of the faculty. Right away, I was impressed with how in depth the courses appeared to be, and also how willing Kuntz was to answer any questions. She seemed passionate about teaching students. Compared to other schools I got accepted to, the course selection was the most thorough.  With the course selection, I was also given more of a chance to test out other options in the Psych field such as clinical, social, physiological, developmental, and cognitive to see where I really wanted to go with my degree.  As of right now, I'm interested in going on the track of doing something with Clinical/Social psychology so I'm planning to take courses such as Abnormal Psychology, Sports Psychology, and Social Psychology.

I also was a very active reader of the student blogs when I was looking into Saint Mike's. I read Alex's blog, and noticed that she was a Psych major. It was ironic because at the time, I was deciding between Assumption College and Saint Michael's, the same two schools Alex was stuck between also. I asked her questions about the differences between the colleges and the programs. She did an awesome job at helping me gain a better insight on everything.

Congratulations on your acceptance and feel free to ask questions if you have any more!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Preparing for Christmas

It's crazy to think that Christmas is only 5 days away. Christmas is one of those holidays that I usually am totally prepared for, but this year, I found myself doing a lot of last minute shopping and decorating. I originally just bought my parents and my brother clothes from the Saint Mike's bookstore, but as soon I got home, I was sent on a mission to buy some other presents for some of my other relatives. I think after shopping on Black Friday this year from midnight-5am, I've grown to like shopping when the stores are crowded. I know, I know, it sounds weird, but it just makes me even more determined to shop and get things crossed off of the list. Along with shopping, there were many other things that my family and I had to cross off the preparation list to make sure we are going to be ready for Christmas Day.

Final result from shopping.
Shopping for family and friends. 
As mentioned above, that was definitely a success. My friend, Kelsi, and I went shopping at the mall for four hours on Saturday. You would think that would be enough time to complete all of the shopping, but I had to go back to the mall again on Sunday.

Wrapping the presents.

Putting up the tree and decorating it

A couple of years ago, I won a tree at the Festival of Trees, an event that takes place in Massachusetts where Christmas trees are decorated and people have the chance of winning them through a raffle. My tree had a Santa theme to it. Ever since I won that tree, my family has continued to use the fake tree each year. To switch things up, my brother, his girlfriend, and I went to go on the hunt for a real tree on Sunday.  It may have been a little bit last minute getting a tree when Christmas is only a week away, but in my dad's words, "Well, at least we don't have to worry about the tree dying"

                                                 
I can't wait until Christmas Eve because my family is going to Connecticut to exchange gifts with the rest of my extended family. It's going to be a great time, as will Christmas, which I spend at my house with my family. Until next time, tweet or formspring!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

F.I.N.A.L.S


Getting reiki done
Finals week. It's a week full of stress because all of the studying to do, a week full of anticipating when finals will end, and a week full of excitement because once it's all over, we get to be home for a month to get a break from schoolwork.  Here are some of the things I've been doing to help me through this week:
Free Massages at Stress Free Knight
At Stress Free Knight, there were the options to get free massages, henna, and reiki to relieve some stress from studying.
Initiating study groups
It's always good to start a study group with people in your class, especially if you aren't understanding the material that well.  That way, people in the group can help you better understand it, and vice versa.

Notecards
I'm not crazy about making notecards, but I've recently learned that making notecards works best for memorizing vocab.  I used some for my midterms and I plan to for my finals too.
Alliot food breaks
You can't study forever in the library or in your dorm room. Study breaks are definitely needed, so it's good to head over to the dining hall, Alliot, to get dinner and some snacks to help keep you getting through the day.
Library sessions
When I need to study or get any work done, I go to the cubicles (picture of one above) that are in the basement in the library. 
Staying away from Facebook

This last one is hard because it's tempting to go on Facebook to talk to people or to use it as a distraction from studying.  I struggle with doing this myself, but I've been trying to get a little bit better with it since I have two of my hardest finals on Thursday.

Any questions about finals week or anything else? tweet or formspring me!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Why Bloggers Chose SMC

With the second Early Action deadline over, it only leaves the final deadline to apply, which is February 12th. So, to backtrack a little bit, I thought I would show you the perspectives of other bloggers from all of the classes on why they chose SMC. You can also read mine by clicking here. It was tough finding almost everyone's "Why I Chose SMC" post, so bloggers, if you aren't there let me know! :)

Click on the names below and it will bring you to the person's post! :)
Class of 2015
Tarah 
Alex 
Ben 
Sarah 
Juliana 

Class of 2014
Kayley
Jose 
Alex 
Lisa 


Class of 2013
Liz 

Class of 2012
Michaela
Beth

All of the other blogs have other valuable tips about college and Saint Mike's, so check those out too!

Also, another thing to check out is the last Knightchat of the semester that is happening tomorrow night from 7:30-9:00pm. It's a great chance to ask any questions to SMC students to gain a better understanding of what Saint Mike's is like.

For now, I'm off to do some more homework, but stay tuned for my next blog post on finals week!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

25 Days of Christmas!

Happy December everyone! Along with that, it's also the start of ABC Family's 25 Days of Christmas! Here are some of my favorite movies shown throughout the 25 days with some added video clips:

Dr. Seuss's: The Grinch Stole Christmas




The Harry Potter Movies




Home Alone




Polar Express




Santa Claus is Comin' to Town



The Year Without Santa Claus

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pizza Putt

So, I'm writing this blog post from my comfy bed since yesterday was the start of Thanksgiving break! It feels good to be back home to see my friends and family. Also, as much as I love school so far, the break is very much needed since the coursework started to pick up quite a bit during the last two weeks before break. Instead of stressing out about all of the work, my friends and I took a different approach and decided to have some fun at Pizza Putt, which is about a ten minute walk from campus. I had so much fun at Pizza Putt that I figured it deserved its very own post about it.

I was first introduced to Pizza Putt when I came up last Spring to stay with my friend's sister who is currently a senior now at Saint Mike's. Pizza Putt was having a special discounted night for students, so we all went there to jump on the opportunity. Pizza Putt definitely has pizza and it has mini golf, but it also has bowling, laser tag, arcade games, bumper cars, and batting cages! Check out some pictures below!
Bumpin' cars

The bowling alley

Part of the arcade area.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Jibfest

It's beginning to get around the start of skiing and snowboarding season. Smuggs passes have been selling for the past two weeks at only 30 dollars here, making everyone around campus excited for the season to begin.  To give the excited skiiers and snowboarders a chance to start early, the Ski and Snowboard Club hosted an event on Friday night called Jibfest. At Jibfest, the Ski and Snowboard Club brings in snow, builds ramps, and brings in rails to have students here show off their skills.

Here's a clip from it:
video


tweet and formspring if you have any questions! :)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Registration

This morning, I woke up bright and early to register for classes. Well, maybe not that early, but sleeping past 9am on most weekdays makes 6:45am feel really early. Anyways with 15 minutes before registration, I was thinking about all of the tips I heard from my friends who had already registered on Knightvision:
  • Keep active on Knightvision, even if you aren't registering. Knightvision signs you out pretty quickly, so it's good to refresh the page or click on classes so you don't get signed out during registration.
  •  Just because registration is open from 7am-3pm doesn't mean that you should wait until later. The earlier you register, the better of a chance you have to get into your classes, which brings me to the next tip...
  • Hit the submit button to register exactly at 7am.  I honestly thought my friends were over-exaggerating when they told me this, but doing it even one minute after 7 makes a huge difference. Me and my friend Brendan were both registering together, and at 7, both of our computers froze right before we were about to hit submit. We immediately started freaking out as we were anxiously waiting for the computer to unfreeze. Luckily, a couple of minutes later the computer unfroze, but at that point, three of our classes already filled up. I got into Drawing I: Observation (W 2:15-5:15). Originally my three other classes were Digital Media (Tues, Thurs,1:10-2:40), Intro to Philosophy (M,W,F 11:00-12:00),  and Second Semester French (M,W, F 12:10-1:10). Just in case this happens, it's always important to...
  • Make an alternative schedule. The spots fill up quickly for classes, which causes registration to be a little bit competitive. Making an alternative schedule that is satisfying for yourself and is also fulfilling your major/minor requirements and other requirements is the best way to go. 
So, after a little malfunction with registration, I still got into Digital Media and Second Semester French, but just at different time slots than I was expecting. Here's my final schedule:

Monday, Wednesday, Friday
Second Semester French (8:40-9:40)
This course follows FR 101 and continues the development of students' basic language skills in all areas. Some course material will be based on French and Francophone culture.
Elementary Statistics (9:50-10:50) 
Description of sample data; probability distributions including the Normal distribution; correlation and regression; sampling; hypothesis testing; statistical inference; other topics may include Chi-square tests, multiple regression, and ANOVA.
Wednesday only: Drawing I: Observation (2:15-5:15)
Students will develop skills in mark making, formal visual principles, and abstract thought through assignments that survey different approaches to Drawing.
Tuesdays & Thursdays
Digital Media (9:50-11:20)
Students are introduced to new technologies used to create digital art and develop basic proficiencies in digital imaging (Adobe Photoshop), digital illustration and animation (Adobe Illustrator), and web design (Adobe Dreamweaver). Students are introduced to the critical examination of the digital revolution, including issues connected to privacy, consumerism, artistic/creative expression, media ownership, multitasking, and mediated representations of reality.






If you have any more questions about registration, or any questions in general, feel free to tweet or formspring :)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Halloweekend

Hope everyone had an awesome Halloween yesterday!

I know I sure did, especially since I technically celebrated Halloween three nights in a row (Friday, Saturday, and Monday). Some people even started early and dressed up Thursday through Monday! Luckily, I didn't have to do any last minute costume shopping since I got my costumes over the long weekend when I went home.

Friday night, Nicki Minaj. Saturday night, Native American.

Here are some other costumes that my friends dressed up in:
Morgan, Sarah, Morgan, and Dylan as lifeguards.
Camden, Logan, Nick, and Sam in togas
Tan Wai as Lieutenant Dangle from Reno 911
Brendan as a zombie.
On actual Halloween night, I "accidentally" saw Paranormal Activity 3. When I say accidentally, I mean I forgot that for my Media Rev class that I wasn't supposed to watch any type of video for a week. Well, oops I messed up with that assignment, but fortunately, I was able to watch a good scary movie on Halloween. Overall, halloweekend = major success!

tweetor formspring if you have any questions!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Deadlines and Knightchats!

Hey guys!

Just a reminder that the Early Action deadline to apply is just a week away now! (November 1st). I found applying early to all my schools beneficial for two main reasons:
  • Although I had to work on my application throughout the summer, it was a relief going into my senior year knowing that all I had left to do was fill out the CommonApp. The CommonApp was a faster, easier way to apply to multiple schools at once.
  • Early Action gave me more time to weigh my options. I found out whether or not I got into my schools around December, which was a time that some people were just starting to apply. It gave me all the way until May to decide where I wanted to go. 
All application dates are:
Early Action I: November 1st
When to Expect Decision: December 16th

Early Action II: December 1st
When to Expect Decision: January 27, 2012

Regular Decision: February 1, 2012
When to Expect Decision: March 16, 2012

Transfer Applications for Fall 2012: February 15, 2012

 Also, parents, check out our next Knightchat on Thursday from 7:30-9pm. I'll be participating in it, along with other bloggers, Alexandra, Alex, Beth, and Sam.
To sign up for the Knightchat on Thursday or any other future student Knightchats, click here!

tweet, formspring

Monday, October 17, 2011

There's No Place Like Home

On Friday, I left Saint Mike's to head home for Salem, NH until Tuesday afternoon. It was surprisingly sad to leave my friends at Saint Mike's, since we have all gotten so close from only knowing each other for two months. Nonetheless, I was still super excited to go home to see my family and friends. While college has been awesome so far, I learned some of the benefits of going home:
Homecooked meals: With freshmen having an unlimited meal plan, there comes a time where you want to switch up the Alliot routine and want your parent's cooking.
Yummy omelette cooked by my mom on the left. On the right, steak tips, mac and cheese, and baked beans :)
Showering in a more open space with no flip flops! : I was so stuck in a routine where I would grab my shower tote, a towel, and put on my flip flops to go into the shower, that I almost forgot about how life is  showering without flip flops. It was definitely refreshing to be in a less confined space and not to have to wear them.
Driving: I got so used to taking the bus everywhere I went, that I almost forgot what it was like driving.
Just cruisin'
Seeing my cats: 
Lily, on left. Ruby, on right
Sleeping in my own bed: My bed is comfy back at Saint Mike's, but there's really nothing better than sleeping in your own bed.
Parent's Willingness to Help You Out: Of course your parents miss you while you're gone, but sometimes they actually miss doing stuff for you.  Exhibit A below :)
My mom working hard doing my laundry.
and of course.....
Seeing my family and friends: It's always good to know that you have your friends from back home and your family there for you when you come home. My parents and my brother were all extremely excited to see me, which made me even happier that I was home.  As for my friends, I was able to see some of them at the schools they go to, University of New Hampshire and Southern New Hampshire University. For my friends that I didn't see, I know Thanksgiving break will be a time for all of us to reunite.
On the left, my family! On the right, my friends and I all together.
Overall, going home was awesome, but at the same time, I can't wait to head back to Saint Mike's tomorrow!

tweet, formspring :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Technology Fast

My freshmen seminar, The Examined Life, is a class that focuses on analyzing yourself along with other aspects in today's society. We are currently reading Feed by M.T. Anderson, a book that is set in a future world where television and computers are connected directly into people's brain. The characters in the book deal with technology 24/7, so our teacher assigned us to keep track of how many hours during the day we use technology. Saturday was the day we spent tallying up our usage, while Sunday was the day we spent without technology. 
Here were my results from Saturday:
e-mail: 10 minutes
internet: 30 minutes
Facebook: 2 hours
Texts (sent and received):150
Music: 3 hours
Television: 2 hours
Phone calls: 30 minutes
Skype: 2 hours
Total= 10 hours 10 minutes

To see that almost half of my day was consumed of technology was really eye-opening. I was concerned I wasn't going to make it through the fast since I seemed too reliant on technology. Before going to bed on Saturday night, I made sure that I shut off my phone, computer, and I-pod to avoid any temptations on Sunday. When I woke up on Sunday, I did what I do every other day; I grabbed my phone off of my nightstand to see any new messages. Before turning it on, I became conscious of what I was about to do and immediately stopped myself. After my almost fail of a technology fast, I went over to my friend’s dorm. Luckily, I told him about the fast. He understood what I had to do, so he took me under his wing for the day. We planned times where we would meet up to go out to eat or hang out with our other friends. I think that was the part I was most concerned about, having to go to other people's dorms rather than sending a quick text asking to go to Alliot. Planning a schedule made that worry go right away, though.
The whole day without technology was quite refreshing. Instead of staying inside all day on my computer, I spent the day outside since it was a beautiful fall day. I didn't really even think about how I wasn't using any technology, it just seemed to be another usual day for me. Overall, it was a cool assignment that made me think about how cutting back on technology could help us with connecting more with the outside world.

Also, don't forget to tune into our first Knightchat is tomorrow night at 7:30-9pm! Knightchats give prospective students an opportunity to talk to current students about our experience here at Saint Mike's.

tweet, formspring! :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Never-Ending Orientation

So, I decided to tell you guys something extremely cool that may or may not be happening with the incoming freshmen class next year. My freshmen seminar class (The Examined Life) consists of the same people from my orientation group, which made me feel more comfortable attending classes on the first day. I got to know my group really well during orientation, and since the Examined Life is a class that is focuses on writing about yourself (Yes, finally a class where you can use "I" as much as you want to in a paper), we became a lot more closer after sharing our personal stories. Our orientation leaders are actually staying with us throughout our class, too. My two orientation leaders, Rob and Jenna, already have started planning times to come into our class to read off their papers from when they took The Examined Life. Also, they plan to have hangouts outside of class with everyone, as if it's orientation all over again. Last week, we had our first outside of class hangout. Jenna went with the girls back to her room, while the guys had an air hockey tournament in the lounge. In Jenna's room, we filled out a questionnaire regarding our college experience so far. Here were some of the questions and my answers:
1. What is the biggest challenge about having a roommate?
I think it's hard outgrowing the expectation that you and your roommate aren't going to be best friends. It's a good thing for me and my roommate though because we have our own seperate groups of friends, yet I know I can come back to our room and feel completely comfortable to talk with her about anything.
2. How often do you talk to your parents/ other family?
I talk to my parents every day, usually through texting since it's more convenient and also a faster way of communicating. As for my other relatives, I keep in touch with them through e-mails once a week.
3. How often do you feel homesick?
It comes in waves for me, sometime it hits real hard, and sometime it comes in a quick moment where something here might remind me about my friends and family back home. I would say that homesickness hit me almost every day in the first couple of weeks, but I've become more adjusted to the point that I only get homesick 2-3 times during the week.
4. What do you think about the weekends here?
The weekends here are awesome. You can find your niche here and choose to do what makes you feel comfortable, without any judgment from anyone. Chances are you will find people here who like to partake in the same activities you do.

I was a bit worried that I was the only one answering these questions this way, but I was quickly reassured when Jenna read out each of our answers (anonymously) only to find out the other six girls felt the same exact way I did about some of the issues. Jenna allowed us to open up about our feelings, and it was a really awesome bonding experience. I can't wait for more of these outside of class hangouts. I am glad that I'm part of this "test" group. I hope that this test run proves that staying in touch with our orientation leaders and orientation groups is beneficial to our learning here. If this goes well, then you guys should be able to experience this next year!

Be sure to check out my next blog post regarding an assignment that's for The Examined Life. I can't use any technology (television, radio, i-pod, computer, cell phones, etc) for 24 hours. Coming from someone who is constantly multi-tasking between listening to music, being on Facebook, and texting people, this is going to be a really interesting challenge.
Until next time,
tweet & formspring :)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

SMC's Radio Show: The Morning Mike

Saint Mike's has its own personal radio station, WWPV 88.7 The Mike. The station plays a variety of music and also has a variety of hosts. Each time slot available opens up the opportunity for students to host their own radio show. All you have to do is shoot a quick e-mail to the people in charge of the station (Tip: do it as soon as possible since the slots fill up quick!) The cool thing about the radio show is that you don't need any experience at all, so that's what got my friends and I interested in doing it. We ended up getting the 8am to 10am time slot on Sunday, so that's why we named our show The Morning Mike. Our first show was last Sunday. To get a better understanding of what a first show is like, or what it was like, you can hear all about it from myself, Brendan, and Tan Wai (my two co-hosts).

Tan Wai Hui
Why did you want to do the radio show ? "I originally did it to help out Brendan since he wanted to do it the most out of all of us, but then I started to have more of a personal interest after. I thought it would be a lot of fun.
What did you think of the first show? "It was our first time on air, so I didn't expect to the be the best at it right away. We struggled with the talking part of it since we were kind of nervous and didn't know what to talk about. Otherwise, we played great music, and had a good time.

Brendan Oates
Why did you want to do the radio show? "I thought of it as a different kind of activity for me, which made me jump at the opportunity. Also, my sister did it at her college and she loved it. I figured I would like it just as much as her. 
What did you think of the first show? "We had some trouble adjusting to it at first since we were new to it. We made a few mistakes, but managed to still have a fun time!
 and myself...
Lauren Mazzoleni
Why did I want to do the radio show? I wanted to do to the radio show because I thought it would be a good way of expressing my interest of music. I could show people some of my favorite bands that aren't normally shown on radio stations.  Also, I thought it would be cool activity for me, Tan Wai, and Brendan all to do together. 
What did I think of the first radio show? The first show was exactly what a first show normally is like. I expected to mess up, since we are just new at it. It was cool because none of us were frustrated when we made a small error, but rather laughed at it and knew that we could easily redeem ourselves the next time. 

You can check out WWPV's website just by clicking on the link to stream any shows and look up the playlists.

tweet, formspring :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Handling Homesickness

I remember leaving my hometown, Salem, NH, feeling like I was sick of home. I wanted to just move onto college and start up a new part of my life. With about almost a month of being here at SMC, I am not sick of home, but rather homesick. Being homesick is a hard feeling to shake off, but the feeling is so natural that sometimes you have to allow yourself to feel homesick at some point.You can't let yourself think that you are the only one feeling this way either.

Here are some tips that have helped me handle my homesickness:
1. Go out with friends. Living in the moment is what matters the most. Hang out with your college friends to help get your mind off of the way you're feeling.
2. Immerse yourself in studies. With all of my classes, I've already gotten a lot of homework to do from studying to reading to writing papers. It has kept me on task by doing my homework, and also kept my mind occupied on something else.
3. Get more involved around campus. Saint Mike's sends plenty of e-mails daily notifying us on events going on throughout the week. There's a whole range of things to do from intramural sports to clubs.
4. Talk to your friends from home and at college/family about how you're feeling. Your parents have been there through this life change that you're going through, plus they are dealing with missing you too. Your friends from home are feeling the same way since they are in college, too. It's always good to talk to someone who you can relate to, so you know you aren't alone in this process.
5. Bring pieces from your home to your new home. Make your dorm room more like a home by putting up pictures of family and friends that are reminders that they are always there.
6. Plan a trip home. This one may be hard depending on where you live, but there are bus and train stations, and an airport nearby if you ever want to go home for the weekend. I've already planned to go home two weekends in a row, the four day weekend in October and the weekend after for Pumpkinfest at Keene State College. I think planning these trips makes me feel more comfortable that I know I'll be seeing my friends and family soon.

tweet, formspring, or facebook! :)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Birthday Bash

Hey guys!

I just realized that this has been the third Sunday in a row that I've posted, so I'm sorry about the wait of  each blog post. I've been extremely busy with schoolwork and other extra curricular activities here, but this week was even busier since my 18th birthday was on Friday. There was a lot of planning to do for it, since my two best friends from home and my mom were coming to visit during the week. My mom visited here on Thursday night, which was awesome. Not only was it great to see her, but it was also great that she brought me warmer clothes since it's been quite a cold September so far (I'm afraid to see how the winters are going to be!). My mom's presence helped with the homesickness that I was feeling on/off during the time that I've been here.
Then came Friday, where the festivities kicked off right away for my birthday. I woke up to my door with decorations on it by my friends.
I was out of classes on Friday at 1:10, and that's where my friends and I started to plan out our trip to Burlington for the afternoon. We ended up shopping at the mall, then visiting Border's for the last time before it officially closed down :( For dinner, we went out to Sweetwater's.

When I got back, my two best friends from home arrived to the campus. I opened up their presents, along with my friend's presents from here. I got a Lil Wayne poster, mittens, a nerf gun (from my guy friends),  a pandora charm, and a vera bradley wristlet (comes in handy to hold room key and Knightcard). And of course, I got an awesome Nicki Minaj airbrushed shirt from my friend back home..
back of the shirt



front of the shirt

I had a great 18th birthday and I was super excited I got to spend it with a mixture of new friends and friends back home. It was hard saying good-bye to my friends back home the next day, and it brought me back to feeling a bit homesick. I think it inspired my next blog post, so be prepared to see some tips on how to deal with being homesick!

Tweet, Formspring, and also check out this awesome slideshow my friends put together for me for my birthday!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Dancin', Chillin', and Grillin'

After a long Friday night spent in Burlington shopping at the mall for the highlighter dance, shopping just to shop, and eating out at RiRa Irish Pub (a restaurant that takes knight cards), I was so tired. I was well-aware that I needed to have a lot of energy for the highlighter dance on Saturday. I took advantage of the weekends and slept until ten on Saturday, which felt awesome since four days a week I have to wake up at seven-thirty.
The Welcome Back Bash didn't start until three in the afternoon, so I chilled outside on the quad on a beautiful day with my friends. My friends and I started heading over to the bash around 5 to get some dinner. I didn't expect so much food from burgers to brownies to watermelon, it was a tasty feast. After stacking up my plate, we all just laid out on the 300s fields while listening to a student band playing.
I didn't know what to expect with the highlighter dance when I first heard about it, but it turned out to be a real good time. Basically, my clean white t-shirt turned into a piece of art due to my friends drawing all over me with a highlighter. Here are some pictures from the night!



Sunday, September 4, 2011

Orientation Part Two, Classes Day One

Okay, so my last post I left off with telling you about how there was an orientation dance. Well, to say the least, the dance was bumping. It was a blast whether you were dancing with a girl/guy, or just with your group of friends. The rest of orientation went awesome, with a hypnotist, a juggler, and many other events going on!
As for the first day of classes, I went into it feeling a little bit nervous about who was in my classes, what my professors would be like, and what the homework situation would be like. The nerves went away when I saw a lot of familiar faces in all of my classes. It's actually pretty cool because in my first year seminar, The Examined Life, all of the people from my orientation group are in there. That right away gave me connections, making me feel comfortable. For the rest of my classes, I'm taking Psychology, Media Revolutions, and French. Psychology and Media Revolutions are both really interesting, and my professors are down to earth teachers that seem passionate about what they teach. On the other hand, I think French will be the most difficult class on my schedule because it requires a lot of focus since my professor only speaks in french, and the class is also at 8:40am.
As for the homework situation.... I've only been here for a little more than a week and I've noticed that the homework situation is a lot different from high school in many ways, so here are some tips on how to deal with the work:
Find a balance between homework and social life: It may be hard to deny going out with your friends to Burlington or just to hang out in the quad, but getting your homework out of the way should be your top priority. Even just working on your homework for an hour and then meeting up with your friends later will be beneficial to you. It will give you a head start on it so it's not all saved up for Sunday.
Find a study place that works for you: Depending on the hours, the dorms can or cannot be loud. If the dorms are loud, then I usually go to the library where there are computer labs and tables to sit at and do homework. The library is a great place to go to concentrate and do work. The library is open until 1am on every day but Friday and Saturday, so it's great!
 Invest in a planner: All I can say is thank god for the invention of a planner. Keeping yourself organized with assignments is crucial. You never want to fall behind in a class, because the work piles up quicker than you would expect.
Use your resources if you're struggling with an assignment: Don't hesitate to e-mail a professor about the homework assignment or ask someone in your class for help! Also, there are plenty of tutors on campus and other outlooks (such as the Writing Center) that are willing to help.

Hopefully you'll find these tips helpful! For now, I'm off to the Champlain Valley Fair to go see Sugarland and Sara Bareilles.
:) tweet or formspring

Friday, August 26, 2011

Glimpse of Orientation

Packing ended up being a crazy, last minute process, so to make up for not posting any packing pictures, I thought I would show you guys some pictures from my hectic move-in day. But first, I want to tell you what it's like when you arrive at Saint Mike's for move-in day. There's a group of orientation leaders with signs in their hands, chanting your name (after asking what it is) and blowing whistles non-stop. The energy from the leaders is welcoming and comforting. After arriving, you pick up your key for your room, and begin the move-in process. A bonus is that the orientation leaders help you carry in your stuff, which I give them major props for. I'm living on the fourth floor of Ryan (by clicking on this, it gives you a virtual tour of the dorm rooms and a view from the outside of Ryan). Like the other dorm buildings, Ryan doesn't have elevators, so going up and down four flights of stairs repetitively was exhausting enough. After hours of lifting and unpacking stuff, this was the final result to mine and my roommate's (Jaycie) room!
Jaycie's side of the room

My side of the room (with me lounging on the bed, after a long day)
 Move-in day doesn't stop after you move in. The rest of the day consisted of ice breakers with your orientation group, a mandatory convocation held at the Chapel, a class of 2015 photoshoot, floor meetings with RA and floormates (includes pizza delivery from your RA!), and a fun for all hosted by the orientation leaders. The fun for all was full of more whistling, orientation leaders dressed up in crazy costumes, and some more icebreakers that our whole class was involved with. Overall, it was pure madness the first day. All of the events are set up to make you feel comfortable and to make you more familiar with the people you'll be spending the next four years with. It's been awesome so far, and tonight's the orientation dance that is supposed to be the best part of this weekend. I can't wait for it!

I'll be sure to post more on the rest of how orientation went and how my classes are, since classes start Monday!

Monday, August 15, 2011

College Checklist

Woooo! With ten more days left until move-in day, I decided to make a checklist to see what I have done and what I still need to do.
Buy books for classes: Check.
The SMC bookstore provides great deals, with used versions of books discounted from 35% of the new book price. I ordered two of my four books through the SMC bookstore, but through Chegg and Amazon, I found my other two books at a used price cheaper than the bookstore.
Read the summer reading assignment, Eating Animals: Check.
I felt like I had all the time in the world to read Eating Animals, when in reality, I looked at the calendar only to see that it was the beginning of August. Oops! I got an essay assignment for Eating Animals a week later, and that was the push I needed to start reading. I ended up reading the 260 page book in two days! By the way, I recommend reading it because it's interesting to see the truth behind some of the food you eat. I can definitely understand why some people are vegetarians.
Go shopping! : Definite Check.
Honestly, I'm one of those girls who isn't IN LOVE with shopping, but college shopping wasn't something I could get out of. Last week, my mom and I went on a mission determined to get all of my dorm room essentials. Two hours later, we were wheeling out a Target cart filled with numerous shopping bags. Just when I thought Target was going to be the only store we would be buying out, we went to Wal-mart to get school supplies, such as notebooks, pens/pencils, and binders. We took a break after tackling on Wal-mart and Target the same day, and went to the mall a couple days later for back-to-school clothes shopping. Final result: several shopping bags from Macy's, H&M, and Marshall's filled with an assortment of clothes and accessories, such as new cheetah Sperry's, dresses, jeans, boots, and coats. Shopping isn't too bad when you get good results, but man it is tiring!
Clean my room to prepare for packing: Check.
To the left, my pigsty of a room. To the right, success!
Packing and writing Eating Animals essay: Half-checks.
I have organized what I'm going to bring and what I'm going to keep, but I just haven't started the actual packing process itself (storing items in bins, bags, etc). For the essay, I have written a page so far on the struggle between nature and nurture and eating certain foods. I need to write 2-3 pages overall. 

I hope to be done with everything by the end of this week, so next week I won't feel so rushed. Once I'm finished with packing, I'll be sure to post some pictures of everything! 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Time Flies By

My high school graduation song, Never Forget You by Lupe Fiasco, has been a reoccurring song that always finds a way of appearing on shuffle on my iPod. I'll sing along to it any time it plays, but the words of the song never entirely hit me. Last night, Never Forget You came on again. This time, I listened to the words, rather than belting out the words, and it brought me back to the night of my graduation.


It seemed like graduation was just yesterday, but now summer's almost over. Majority of my friends are staying in the New Hampshire area for college, making me the farthest one away out of all of my friends. I was initially scared because I thought that all my friends would be seeing each other more since they are either attending the same school, or are in a close traveling distance away from each other. Now, I've noticed that the distance doesn't seem to matter all that much. I'll miss my friends a lot, but we are still going to keep in touch through texting and skype, and see each other on breaks and visits to each other's colleges. With fifteen days left until move- in day, I'm spending these days having a good time with my friends and family before I leave. I know that within the next two weeks, there are going to be a lot of see you later's (not good-byes) to say to my friends. It's going to be hard, but I honestly cannot wait to start Saint Mike's. I'm so excited to meet new people and to start my time there :)

Friday, August 5, 2011

More Than a Meet and Greet

In mid- July, I got an invitation in the mail to this event called "Student Send-Off." The invitation included that it was going to take place in Windham, NH (the town over from me), and that there were going to be incoming and current students, and also alumni members around the New Hampshire area attending. I eagerly marked the calendar for August 4th, 6:00PM, in the hopes that this gathering would be a great opportunity to meet new people.

How the Send-Off went (rough estimates on time):
6:00PM-6:10PM: The beginning of the meet and greets with the alumni hosting the event. I learned that the alumni hosting the event not only went to Saint Mike's, but also their triplet daughters all went there, too.
6:10PM-7:00PM: Marissa and Lucas, both incoming freshmen, arrived. The first thing Marissa said to me was, "Hey! You look familiar.. I think we're friends on Facebook." It sounds silly, but I think during orientation that will be one of the main icebreaker lines.  It sure helped break the ice with Marissa, as our conversations led to roommates, residential situations, and classes to finding out she's a Psych major so she's in my psych class. I was relieved that I would be going into one of my classes with an automatic connection to someone. Lucas was welcoming with sharing his previous experience with roommates since he attended a prep school. He provided comic relief about how he took full advantage of the laundry service his prep school offered.
The next two people who came were Amy and Meghan, both current students from the class of 2014. Amy is a religious studies and english double major, and also a blogger and tour guide at Saint Mike's (Check out her blog). She enlightened the group by telling her own personal experiences about Alliot (the dining hall), study abroad (she is planning to go to Istanbul, Turkey), and the professors at Saint Mike's. She offered an interesting insight that made me excited about the networking of Saint Mike's. Meghan was a wealth of information providing her perspective on the residential life. I found out that she lived in the 4th floor of Ryan, which is where I'll be living this year.
7:00PM-7:10PM: huddled up the group of students and alumni to take a picture (alumni at each end)
7:10PM-8:00PM (the time my family departed): I listened to my dad, along with other alumni, point out the now-and-then similarities and differences to Saint Mike's. The one similarity that stuck out the most was that the community feeling was still present. That feeling was something that lured me into Saint Mike's, being that it was highly noticeable on my visit, and even during the send-off. Everyone was friendly and openly willing to answer any questions we tossed at their way.

Saint Mike's takes the cake!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Re-calculating.. oh wait, where's the GPS?

Hey guys! I thought it would be interesting to do a post on college interviews, since they can be a make or break situation in the college process. Many colleges will tell you that an interview is "optional, not required, but recommended." This leads prospective students to wonder "Do I schedule an interview or not?" Saint Mike's offers interviews at the campus with an admission counselor on select weekdays. Besides the option of an interview on campus, Saint Mike's provides the opportunity of an admission counselor to come straight to an area near you for 'a coffee with a counselor'. Being from Salem, NH, the closest area was Manchester, NH. I jumped on the offer quickly, immediately setting up an appointment with the admission counselor.

Let's just say that the interview didn't start off quite as I planned....

I had one thing right, which was dressing neat for the interview. After leaving my house, everything began to spiral downhill. My parents told me that Starbucks was right off of the exit, so I didn't even bother bringing my GPS. Mistake #1.

I ended up driving in circles around the nearby Manchester Mall, frantically calling both of my parents to ask where I was. As they were guiding me in the right direction, they also told me that I should call Michael (the admissions counselor I was meeting with) to tell him I was running late. Great, I didn't have his number. Mistake #2.

Luckily, I was able to get the Starbucks number, and had one of the staff members relay the message to Michael that I was going to be late. That leads to tip #1 of college interviews...
(As you can see, I'm not the best with bubble letters haha.) Granted that Michael was completely understanding of the situation, it is always good to arrive to interviews on time, or even a couple minutes earlier. If for some reason the time needs to be changed or you are going to be late, then it's important to have the contact information of the person you have the interview to give him/her an explanation of why you're late along with an apology.
As soon as I did arrive, Michael warmly greeted me, and offered to pay for a drink or snack at Starbucks. My nerves started to kick in as soon as my drink was served and Michael and I were making our way to our table. Tip #2..
You are going on an interview to make a good impression, but that doesn't mean you need to stray away from who you really are just to make that impression. Be honest, act natural, and you'll be all set :)
 Tip #3..
My first five or so minutes with Michael consisted of answering simple, personal questions like, "Why are you interested in Saint Mike's?" and "What do you want to know about Saint Mike's?" I responded to his questions but also had some of my own, like, "What are the average SAT/ACT scores required by Saint Mike's?" (This is where I learned Saint Mike's is now a test-optional school.), "What is the campus life like?" and "What is the average class size?" He was eager to answer my questions. It's never a bad thing to come prepared and have your own questions. If anything, it shows how interested you are into learning about the school.
Despite the rocky start off arriving at the interview, it went really well. One last tip,
As soon as you get home (hopefully, not getting lost on the way back, too), remember to send a thank you note through the mail or an e-mail to the person you had an interview with. A follow up note is polite and demonstrates manners, which allows you to stand out.
Overall, I would make an interview mandatory. An interview gives you a direct connection to someone at the school, who has a strong influence on your application. If you are interested in setting up an interview or a visit at Saint Mike's, click this link!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Why I Chose SMC

 Hey Everyone!

Just a quick little introduction.. I'm Lauren and I'm entering my first year of college at Saint Michael's College. I've always been intrigued with how some of my friends and family have chosen where they want to spend their next four years. Being from Salem, NH, a lot of my friends chose to attend the University of New Hampshire for several reasons from its great programs to its campus life, while others chose it solely because of financial reasons to avoid the dreaded debt that results in an easier tab at the end of the four years. Everyone has their own personal story about why they chose what school they are attending, so here's my take on why I chose Saint Mike's.

The initial excitement about college started when I heard both of my parents talk about both of their college experiences. My mom spent her memorable four years studying nursing at the University of Connecticut, while my dad attended Saint Michael's College studying Political Science. Both of them provided me with some strong insight as to why college is known to be "the best four years of your life." My first visit ended up being UConn because I was curious to see what UConn was all about. Right away, I was overwhelmed by the massive size of UConn. In a nutshell, I realized that I didn't just want to be a simple number, I wanted to be a student that my professors and classmates knew.

I went home after UConn feeling like I needed to re-evaluate my college choices. I visited other schools after UConn such as Assumption College, Clark University, and the University of New Hampshire. UNH was the same ordeal as UConn, and through Assumption and Clark, I discovered that I didn't want an urban surrounding area. I was beginning to feel stressed out about not finding my perfect fit. My dad sensed that I was stressed out and started to provided me with some reassurance that I will find my perfect fit. He began getting wrapped in his experience at SMC reminiscing on his days there, saying that if he could go back to anytime, he would go back to his Saint Mike's years. That's exactly what I wanted, an experience that would stay with me forever.

I decided to add Saint Mike's onto my list because of the beautiful Vermont area, the 11:1 student ratio, and the small campus. A few months later, I wound up at Saint Mike's for the first time, which happened to be for Accepted Students Day. As soon as I walked into SMC that day, I immediately felt welcome by the staff greeting me, and I felt like the community right away was interested in getting to know me. The day consisted of meeting professors in my major (Psychology), eating lunch with a current student, and having a group session with a panel of current students. The current students were super friendly and helpful, answering a great amount of questions that were fired at them. Once the group panel with over, I was walking around campus while students that were casually walking around on the campus were greeting me, saying "Hey! Good luck on your decision. Hope you choose Saint Mike's! ;)" Each student seemed to be so happy to be on the campus, and I soon quickly caught that happiness, as if it was almost contagious. After consulting with my parents, we both mutually agreed that this is the school for me. We went over to the Admissions office to hand in my deposit on that day. My gut instincts were telling me something that I couldn't ignore, so I knew it was the right decision.

I thought Accepted Students Day was a great experience, but I think that was just the beginning to my Saint Mike's time. Twenty-seven more days until move-in day, which means I am twenty-seven more days closer to coming to my new home.


Until next time...

Lauren!