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May 5, 2013

Stress ^ 1000

Posted by: Danielle

I know it's been a long time since I've written, far too long in fact. Life has been extremely hectic for me and besides the usual college stress I've also been having some struggles in my personal life as well. But with four days left of this semester I can feel myself getting back on track. This semester has been a lot more difficult than the last one--not only do I have a bigger credit load than I did last semester but I've also had many other things on my plate this semester. Doing my taxes, filling out the FAFSA, figuring out where I'm going to live once my dorm experience is (finally) over, registering for next fall's classes. The list goes on and on but finally all of the aforementioned stressors are taken care of. All I have left to do is get through a few finals and presentations and then I can breathe again. I've been slowly moving out of the dorms for weeks now (because I am so anxious to get out) and by this Saturday the process will be complete. I was on the dean's list last semester, to my own surprise, and for that reason I feel obligated to get on it again this semester. However I don't know if that goal will be accomplished. As I said this semester I am taking more classes and in my opinion more difficult classes, and so even though I'm crossing my fingers and doing everything I can to make my final grades good ones, I'm trying to be come to terms with the idea that this semester I might not make it, (I'll let you know how that goes). I'm excited to go back to my hometown one last summer even though all I'll be doing is working, trying to save up the money necessary for my new place. I'll be living in a duplex above my brother with my boyfriend which will be awesome. We will be a happy little family all under one roof, not to mention I will be eating at my brother's place every night. Win! What I'm most excited for is moving into my own place, having all of my belongings organized and where I want them, painting and decorating to my heart's desire (I love HGTV), and finally having some sense of independence. I will also need to get a job which frankly I'm not looking forward to. I can hardly handle just going to school full time, but then work part-time too? I don't know how I'm going to do it but at least I'll have money. The other day I only had $4.00 on my debit card and it was mortifying. Also really looking forward to being able to go grocery shopping and cooking rather than eating out or eating junk food all day like I do now. I guess all I mean to say is that I am stressed as all holy hell but things are looking up. More on this soon but right now I need to study for finals... Best of luck to you in your end-of-the-semester struggles.

March 6, 2013

Setting yourself straight,

Posted by: Melanie

I'm going to be real honest here and tell you all, that, that Senioritis is R-E-A-L. No joke. And I am not the only to be suffering from it. It's a bad case of Senioritis and stress, and it is literally driving me nuts. One piece of advice for you all when you get to your last semester, relax when you start to feel overwhelmed. I know it probably doesn't sound like a good choice, but do it, because you will need it so that you don't overexert yourself and feel really overwhelmed. Slow your life down a bit because it's the best thing you can do for yourself.

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February 15, 2013

My Own Personal Study Habits

Posted by: Randy

I think in general I think I am an overall pretty good test taker. I am a decent test taker if anything my averages are pretty good when I take test which is probably the best thing about my test taking skills. What leads up to this is ultimately my studying habits and how well I know the subject.

The number one rule I go by is to not study excessively and especially not before a big quiz or test. My reason being is because I don't like to cram study because when I cram study and finally go take the test I feel unready for it. My philosophy is that I would rather relax before a big test that way I can get the rest I need to take the tests and I feel better about it after I am done taking it.

Another thing is that I think it is just best to know all the information beforehand. Cram long before the test and quiz and review over the week before testing that way the one day before the test can be used for minimal studying and relaxing before the big day.

My second plan is to study before the test in the case that I couldn't find time to study at all. If I couldn't find time to study I would definitely make some time to cram in info. Though I don't like doing this sometimes the situation just doesn't allow time. I do the best as I can as a college student.

Some more things that also helps with studying is too have practice quizzes or tests which are always nice to have. Another thing is to have people you can study with because it's a way to review with each other.

Places that I really like to go study is Keller Hall right behind Lind Hall, MCAE in Appleby Hall, and I like Folwell Hall right on University Ave. These are the places that I enjoy going to the most because I find I can focus well in these places and I sometimes meet friends here so it is a win-win situation.

Back to study time! 

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February 14, 2013

Belief Speech

Posted by: Danielle

In my public speaking course, our first big speech was due this week. It was a belief speech in which we talk about something we deeply believe in, why we believe it, and how the belief affects our life. I decided to write about organ donation because it is a topic that I have experience with and that is near and dear to my heart. So I wrote out my speech and I was feeling so good about it--it was heartfelt and personal just like I wanted. The best speeches are always delivered with emotion and my story was touching. However, when I got in front of that crowd, the emotion was overwhelming and I couldn't hold it together. I bawled in front of my entire class. I am not a huge fan of crying, especially with a live audience, so embarrassed doesn't even describe how I feel. My perfectly timed speech was then a minute and a half over, as I struggled to get out the words. I still feel terrible over it, but many of my classmates reassured me that it was still a very strong speech, and that crying was expected considering I was bearing my soul. Many of my classmate teared up with me. The worst part though, is that the entire speech was recorded on film. I had a microphone attached that caught every sniffle, and the camera caught my shaking hands wiping the tears away and struggling as my glasses slid down my face with my tears. Having to watch myself bawling and struggling through my speech is going to really SUCK. Here is the write out of my belief speech for those of you who are interested:

 

I believe that organ donation is something that is hugely important, not only for our society as a whole, but especially for me as an individual. Being an organ donor is something I identify myself with, and it is something that I am very passionate about. This topic is such a huge part of my life because if it wasn't for organ donors, my father would not be alive today. It's a scary thought, but it's completely true.

My father has been terminally ill my entire life, and when I was in the fourth grade, his liver began to fail due to hepatitis. He was on the donor list for over two years, and there were many names above his who had been waiting much longer than he had. My father told me that at the time, about sixty percent of the people on the waiting list to get a new liver would die before they ever got that life changing phone call saying that a liver had been found for them. The hope for my dad to get a new liver seemed very unlikely. As my father's illness worsened, he continued to move toward the top of the list, but it got to the point where the doctors sent him home to be comfortable--there was nothing left for us to do but hope. At a very young age, I was forced to come to terms with the fact that my father wouldn't be around much longer. It was just a looming fact that I had to figure out how to deal with--it seemed that there were no more miracles left in store for him. But on May third of 2002, we received that life changing phone call, and a miracle happened.

I remember being dragged out of bed to hurriedly pack my bags; I remember my mother's frantic phone calls to everyone in the family; and I remember my father growing anxious and afraid. It all happened so fast, but it was happening; everyone was feeling a mixture of happiness, relief, and panic. I remember my father being prepped for surgery and saying goodbye, hoping that it wasn't the last time. I remember waiting for over twenty hours in the family waiting room, listening to my grandmother weep and watching my mother's uncertain silence. I think I was too young to fully grasp how my father's life was hanging in the balance, but I was aware enough to have a sick feeling in my stomach the entire time, until the surgeons finally came out and told us--my dad came out of surgery ok. I wasn't allowed to see him for days; my mom didn't want us to see him like that--hooked up to life support with all sorts of tubes coming out of him. I didn't understand then why I couldn't see my dad, but I do now that I'm older and I have seen him like that. It's a scarring image. So I was forced to go home and be babysat by my frantic grandmother until I could see my father's cheeky grin a few days later.

It has now been almost 11 years since my dad's transplant and his body has accepted the liver remarkably well--he didn't even need anti-rejection medication after his surgery. Although he is still terminally ill with numerous health issues, he has had zero problems with his liver since the surgery. It is now HIS liver; his body has embraced it with open arms, the liver which gave him life.

That very liver that now works within my father's body had once belonged to a very old woman who was otherwise healthy until a brain aneurism took her life. Her being an organ donor changed my life forever; my potentially fatherless life was flipped, and I have no one to thank but her. Her death, a tragedy no doubt, had a positive impact on so many; through her death she gave my father life, and countless other people in need of organ transplants. I can't imagine anything more meaningful than that.

It is because of this, my father's miracle, that I decided to become an organ donor. My strong belief in organ donation affects my life in the sense that I know when I pass on, my precious organs will be given away. It's a weird thing to think about, but for me it is comforting. We all want to be remembered, to have our life mean something, to have an impact on the world. At the end of my life, however sad and unfortunate, I want to be able to give that gift of life through my own death, to someone who could potentially have many more years to come after receiving my organs. I believe that my death will then mean something, to someone, as that old lady's death did to me.

February 13, 2013

Jobs,

Posted by: Melanie

As a college student, you figure you kind of have to work a lot to tie a few loose ends, if not all loose ends... In my college career thus far, I have held up to 5 jobs at the same time, and to top it off, be a full time student with decent grades...crazy isn't it? I know, tuition rates going up, and the economy going down, takes a toll on all college students no matter where you are. But now as my senior year is progressing...I'm down to just 2 jobs....amazing huh? Just how the world works. Sometimes even I am amazed at the outcomes of many things...well I guess you could say at all things all the time.

I guess what I'm trying to say too is, no matter how many jobs we have in our college career at the same time, towards the end of it, it will probably dwindle down just because you are so focused on completing everything and actually looking for a "real world job" which not too many people find right away. But from talking to people who have graduated already, have no fear, because you never really know who is watching you. And I have to say for myself, I am scared of what is to come, but I am prepared for it as well, as prepared for it as I will ever be.

Honestly, even with taking classes and going to career services and getting all the help and experience I can, it really does fall right back to Y-O-U! Because it is up to you to take the first step and to trust that you have made the right decision. I met someone the other day who probably gave me the best advice ever about applying to jobs, it never hurts to apply to something you don't exactly qualify for because what employers are seeking, is authenticity. And also from what I have learned and heard over and over again, it is the people you know who will help you or know the contacts of possible positions you can apply for, not your excess level of skills with no network, but your decent amount of skill and network.

Since we are on the topic as well, networking events are always fun to go to and the best things you can do for yourself! Why you ask me, because you get to meet people, people who can mentor you, people who maybe looking to hire, anyone really. The most important thing though, is to bring your resume! Any networking event you go to, I have learned, being your résumé, a notepad and a pen! It really makes you stand out when you hand over your résumé, and take their information if they have no business cards because most likely, you're the only one with a resume --making people remember you intentionally. And having your résumé, just makes you look good and prepared for anything. You never know, you might just get a call back about a job opportunity. Good luck!



February 12, 2013

The Story of My New Bought Computer

Posted by: Randy

Around 3 weeks ago was when I had bought my new computer and I finally just got to use it today. It all started when I got it on the 21st of January just waiting for my brother to bring it to Minneapolis that night. I was pretty excited for it and I was really impatient with it because I really needed a computer for school and I had finally just got one. Sadly when we turned it on it didn't work. It did turn on but it didn't boot correctly. Apparently the hard drive didn't work so it didn't boot up like it should. we tried finding solutions for hours but no solution worked for us. I was very disappointed that I got a faulty laptop. It's actually kind of ironic that I got a faulty laptop because the one I got prior to my new computer the screen is faulty and still is faulty to this day. Other  than my own I've been getting hand me downs most of my life. 

So my new computer just came in today and I picked it up all the way from the Fedex at Washington Ave and I live all the way at 8th so the walk there and walk back was very long nearly took me an hour to get home but it was worth the commute. I sent in my computer back to fixed on January 22nd and it finally just came in. I am very sad that it took more than 2 weeks to get it back but I got it. 

So now that my computer is in working order it works perfectly fine and if you are wondering the computer that I have for school is a 15.6" Acer Aspire. I really like it so far and it's the perfect size for me to bring to school as my other computer is just to big for me to bring to class with me. now that I have my computer it'll make my life easier now during class I can take notes on the computer and not have to  worry too much about space and I have access to power points online which helps a lot. So as of now my new computer is going to be my main computer and the one that I have been using is going to go to my brother since he doesn't have a working computer. It is sad that I have to part with my gaming laptop but I won't part with it for too long at all hopefully. 


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February 11, 2013

The "Almost" First Month of School

Posted by: Randy

So lately I have just finally kind of caught up in my classes and definitely having a harder time now than I have had for awhile. Just recently I visited my High School and went to go talk about my college experience to the senior college possible class and visited some teachers. I tell them that it is tough and that it is tougher than first semester by far. Sometimes I feel like I exaggerate when I tell them to keep reading while they can because I regret not reading more when I was a child. Back to what I was talking about though I finally just kind of caught up in classes but I am doing my best to be ahead and after I realized that I need to stay on track my whole day consist of going to class then when I'm done I go to Keller Hall to go study. 

Some of the classes I'm taking require a lot of reading like Global History, University Writing, and my lecture classes. In general there is a lot of reading that I need to do and in all honesty not really ready for the pace but regardless I have to get stuff done so study it is. So far in terms of grades so far I think I am doing decent but just hanging in there and trying to get as much sleep as I can because I know that last semester I didn't do too well with sleep at all which was really bad and took a toll on my grade. This semester I hope and will do better, I  am very determined to do so at the moment. 

I think in terms of studying my first place contender for a place to study is definitely Keller Hall because it has good wireless and is very comfortable. My second place contender is probably Folwell Hall because it's really quiet there and the rooms provide a good studying atmosphere. These places are definitely places that I like study on my down time and since I am staying on campus full time I will be at these places most of the time now. I am making a lot of time for studying now so my basic schedule is going to be go to class, study, and work. 

February 10, 2013

Another Study Spot Challenge

Posted by: Danielle

Again I've come across this through the tunnel system aka gopher way. This area is a little cafe but there is always a lot of seating for studying and it is always quiet, (it is in a type of building that is known for being very quiet, many doctors pass through here.) I've walked by many time and thought about sitting and studying but today is my first time actually doing it. LOVE IT. Especially after the cafe closes (at three) but the seating is still open, most people clear out and it's very peaceful.

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