Promoting Through Social Media

Andy Boyan’s Social Media class is at it again! We are having a second training session that will be hosted by the other half of our class. The event is a win-win for everyone involved; those who attend will receive training in a field that will help them more successfully reach students, and the students who host the event will gain experience in training groups of people through teaching what they have learned.

The session is focussed on social media training for local businesses and organizations. Our goal is to teach people how to promote themselves to the student body of Albion College. All who are interested are welcome to attend!

Why you should attend:                                                                                                 Social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter allow for many unique opportunities for businesses and organizations to increase awareness of their products and services.

The event is Wednesday, April 22, from 10:30-11:35AM.

We will be meeting in Olin Hall, which is located on the quad across from the library (just in case anyone isn’t familiar with Albion College’s campus locations). You’ll find us in room 112!

Come learn how to use social media to connect with the students of Albion College through the words and knowledge from the students of Albion College.

Hope to see you there!

Sororities Can Be Weird

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At this picture you might ask, what in the world is going on here? Why are those humans wrapped up like presents on Christmas morning? What is the occasion? Aren’t they uncomfortable in there?

Well, since I am one of those people, I can tell you that yes, it was uncomfortable, but I can also tell you that waiting in that wrapping paper for about 20 minutes until was unwrapped by my little was was worth it. This strange activity in greek life is called “big/little reveal” and it is when a new member’s “big sister” is revealed to her after a week long of anonymous gifts — usually given to her by dancing, shirtless college boys who sing or read poetry to her.

So, it’s a weird thing, giving a girl you barely know gifts all week, then waiting for 15-ish minutes in a bundle of wrapping paper for her to “open” you. But seeing the smile on her face afterwards is something that makes this weird part of a sorority so worthwhile.

We have weird traditions, and from the outside looking in it is hard to understand. But from the inside looking out, it is hard to imagine my life at college without being part of a Greek organization.

My Greek Experience

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Recently in the news and other media sources, Greek Life on college campuses has been given an extremely bad reputation, many rightfully so. However, I want to give you my take on Greek Life at Albion, for it is far more than just a group of friends to hang out with on the weekends. Having been a member of Delta Tau Delta Social Fraternity for the past two years and loving every second of it, I thought it was time to give a sort of “exposé” on Greek Life at Albion College, for it truly is a very positive group to be a part of.

At Albion, nearly 50% of the students on Albion’s campus are members of Greek Life. Albion is home to six national social fraternities and five national social sororities. Because such a large number of the students on campus are Greek, Greek Life has become a major aspect of the school’s social atmosphere, including Greek Week, mock rock, Anchorsplash, etc. As an extremely social person, I wondered, before arriving at Albion, how my social life would be affected.

I’m sure you can imagine what Greek Life looked like for me coming to Albion freshman year. Here I am, a young gay man whose only experience with Greek Life is from what I have seen in the media and in semi-inappropriate movies. I never thought that I would EVER have a place in Greek Life; boy was I wrong.

When it came time for fraternities to hand out bids to potential pledges, I received not only one bid, but two! I couldn’t believe it. It was at that moment that I realized that these guys didn’t care about my sexuality; they wanted to welcome me into their brotherhood for who I was as a person.

Fast-forward two years. I am now in my junior year at Albion. I am no longer a pre-vet major, but instead a communication studies major. My grades have continued to increase every single semester since I joined Delta Tau Delta. Last semester, while I was away in Philly, my fraternity brothers each pitched in to buy me a bus ticket home because I was so severely homesick, not for my home in St. Clair, Michigan, but my home at Delta Tau Delta. Just last week, I was elected Lyreman of Alpha Chi Omega sorority. Lyreman is a sort of honorary member of the sorority, and I couldn’t be more honored.

People may think that Greek Life is what they see in the media or in movies such as Neighbors, but I can assure you that that is not the case at Albion College. I couldn’t be more proud to be a member of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity, or a member of Greek Life on Albion’s campus.

Student-Athlete

photo(35)When I was a little girl I wanted to grow up and play college tennis. I picked up my first tennis racket at the age of four and the game has held a very special place in my heart since then. When it was time for me to actively start looking at college and universities there was no doubt in my mind that I would be playing a sport while attending college.

Since I had dedicated myself to tennis and was very passionate about the game, I received several offers to play in different states ranging from Division 1 to Division 3. I was very overwhelmed on where to go and which school to choose. I cannot believe I made my college decision three years ago and am beyond happy that I reminded myself what being a student-athlete really is.

To me, being a student-athlete means putting your studies before your sport, acing that exam before you hit that ace on the tennis court. It means taking what you learned in the classroom and using it to excel on the field or court. Being a student-athlete at Albion College has allowed me to grow into a better version of myself and I feel that it is an invaluable experience.

‘Gay’ Is Not An Insult

In the beginning of the semester, I came back to my room and noticed this little note of affection. Obviously, I know the anonymous message was not left with positive intent, but the only thought I had was, “Did someone really think this would insult me?”

The Only Thing That Upset Me About This: Someone Thought It Was An Insult

The Only Thing That Made Me Sad About This: Someone Thought It Was An Insult

Of all the actual insults they could have used, they chose a word that represents a group of people? I’m only insulted by the fact this person had no original creativity in their words. No zest. So basic.

So I drew a little heart next to their “insult,” and left my name tag on my door. People approached me various times and asked if I had seen what happened. When I responded with, “yes of course I have to look at it to get into my room,” they all asked a variety of questions.

Why wasn’t I upset?

Why didn’t I take it down?

Who did I think would write such a thing on my name tag?

Wasn’t that word a little inappropriate to keep up on my name tag?

Etc…

As an RA, one of my responsibilities is to be an example for other people and teach lessons through my actions. I answered all of their questions.

“Gay” isn’t an insult.

“Gay” isn’t an insult.

Who did it doesn’t matter, because their opinions of me don’t matter. Especially if they are foolish enough to think that “gay” is an insult.

“Gay” isn’t a “bad word.” So, no. The name tag isn’t inappropriate.

Etc…

AND THEN IT HIT ME AS HARD AS REGINA GEORGE GETTING HIT BY A BUS:gay insult

Okay, okay. This statement may seem obvious, but really think about it. When someone’s intentions are purely to cause aggravation, they take pleasure out of every ounce of rebound that comes their way.

In other words:

when the person who gets called gay is offended,

when people push back against the offender and tell them they are wrong,

when the offender gets attention through any irritated response,

they get what they wanted.

When you are in a situation where someone uses the term “gay” as an insult, don’t get insulted. I mean it. Part of the problem is that we still respond to the word “gay” as if it were an insult. We can’t get insulted and aggravated by the use of a word that we claim isn’t insulting.

I’ve used that name tag every time I’ve been on-call this semester to show the author of the anonymous message that I’m not offended. Yes, making a point to put the name tag up on my door does acknowledge anonymous’s attempt of offense, but they may have thought that I was embarrassed or insulted if I threw it away (which is not what I want).

When someone tries to offensively use the word “gay”:

Let them know you heard their attempt, without actually saying you heard them and without telling them they’re wrong.

Let them realize you’re blatantly ignoring their ignorance and that their words have no impact.

And the purposefully offensive people, being the children they are, will run to the next action that will give them the attention they desperately crave.

Gay was once an adjective used solely to describe something lighthearted and carefree. Be just that. 

Send in the Boards

Now that the pavement, which we used to stroll upon months ago, is visible and clear, people can finally breakout the skateboards, longboards, banana boards, surfboards….okay well maybe not surfboards, but you get my point.

The students of Albion’s campus are starting to cruise around and “shred” the streets once more as if they’re finally free from the chains of winter. Being an avid longboarder myself, I am one of those who are beyond excited to get back on my board carve through the smooth streets at Hannah and Cass.

Boarding is truly a fun activity that gives you thrills and chills and can become quite addicting! Theres something about gliding through campus that gives you a whole new look at what’s around you. You get a truly new perspective on the scenery of where you go to school. It’s a somewhat inspiring experience, that everyone can and should try. So next time you are thinking of walking to class, reach over and grab your board instead…see if a cruise will point your day in the right direction!

 

Our Rock Has Been Struck

Dear… Whoever You Are,

You’ve made our precious, holy rock quite holey (insert ba-dum-chh sound here). I’m not writing this post to shame you, nor am I writing it to glorify your actions. Your violence toward our rock was obviously intentional. Perhaps you had a chip on your shoulder (insert another ba-dum-chh sound here).

Whatever your reasoning was, it’s clear you wanted to provoke aggravated chaos. I, for one, am not giving you that satisfaction.

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Layers of Albion College’s History

Dear Fellow Brits,                                                                                                           Cease all of the guessing games, “Whoever You Are” doesn’t matter. We’ve been trying to fill in the open wounds on our rock with blame, but now is our chance to view our history in a way that has never been possible.

Look at all of the layers that had to be fought through.

Look at the different colors that molded together throughout time.

Look at how beautiful the layers of our history are. (#NoFilter)

Look at how the student organizations of our campus have repeatedly contributed to the enamel shell that shields the heart of our campus.

Realize the white underneath the layers is most likely another layer of paint.

We, Albion College Brits, do not go down without a fight.

We, Albion College Brits, mold into one entity through growing together.

We, Albion College Brits, are students and alumni alike. Once a Brit, always a Brit.

We, Albion College Brits, are devoted to our campus in various ways, and the combination of each individual is what strengthens and defines Albion College.

Know who we are is deeper and more impactful than any superficial bash that is thrown at us.

(No, Whoever You Are, I’m not condoning your actions. You’re foolish.)

“Whoever You Are” will eventually be forgotten, and there will be more individuals of their kind that will hit us with their best shot…

Our Rock: The Heart of Our Campus

Our Rock: The Heart of Our Campus

…And our rock will remain concrete. Io Triumphe. 

 

Meet Me at the Coffee Shop

The smell of freshly roasted coffee beans fills the air like a perfume freshly sprayed throughout the room. The sounds of chatter, playful banter, and intellectual conversation resonate in ones ear. The tumultuous yet somehow perfectly ordered design aesthetic of shop is inviting and exciting to newcomers as well as the repeated regulars.

Jackson Coffee Co., a roaster/brewer and coffee shop, have been in the business of “liquid gold” since September 2006. With few locations spread around Jackson, MI, Jackson Coffee Co. has become a true gem and local favorite. Since their inception, they have climbed the ranks in the coffee shop world with much haste.

Their website goes on to mentions such accolades as “In 2007, 2008, and 2009 we won awards for ‘Best Coffee House’ in Jackson. We have won every year since opening, beating out the likes of Biggby Coffee, three Starbucks, Bearclaw Coffee, three Tim Hortons, Dunkin Donuts, and 5 other independent coffee houses.”

It’s not just about the coffee at Jackson Coffee Co., its also about a strong sense of community and bringing the people together. With activities such as live music on Friday nights to weekly book club meetings to the group of students studying for their exams, there’s always something going on at the shop.

The next time you are in the mood for some quality java, skip the big brand stores and cruise on over to the one place where the staff is a good as the coffee and you won’t be disappointed. I promise that if you go once, you’ll be looking forward to your return.

Below are a few images of the Downtown Jackson 201 S. Mechanic St. location:

(Photo Credit: Zach Francis)

 

 

The Not-So-Offical Albion Senior Bucket List

During your four years as a Brit you are always involved in either something academically, athletically, extracurricularly, job-related, or all of the above. All of these things can easily take up all of your time, and then some, leaving no room to explore what else is out there. With that said, here’s a bucket list to check off the things that you may have missed out on during your time at Albion…and now’s your chance to do them before you graduate! Albion Senior Bucket List 

  • Sing karaoke at Relli’s on a Monday night
  • Go see a movie at the Bohm
  • Canoe down the K-Zoo river
  • Paint the Rock
  • Go to every restaurant in downtown Albion
  • Walk through the Nature Center
  • Disc golf at Victory Park
  • Get mentioned/retweetd by the Albion College Twitter account
  • Pull an all-nighter during exam week in the library
  • Hang out with a professor outside of class
  • Get a pic with Brit
  • Go see a campus guest lecturer or speaker
  • Go sledding on “The Hill”
  • Chow-down on a Kellogg Wrap
  • GRADUATE!

Whether or not you complete one or all of these by the time you graduate, you’re still a Brit through and through and you always will be!

Taught to Train

One of my favorite things about Albion College has always been the way we are challenged to learn through experience. Students on this campus are not taught what to think, but how to think, and how to teach others to do the same.We’re given subject materials and are asked to our demonstrate understanding of it in a way that we will be able to use in the future (running a theoretical/real campaign, professional presentations, making a change on the campus community as a class, etc.)

I am taking Social Media with Andy Boyan this semester, and he presented my class with the challenging assignment of  hosting a training session during our class period two times in the semester. The class was split in half, and I was assigned to group one. We had to brainstorm ideas for what population we wanted to reach, and what we wanted to train them on. We decided the training should be for anybody that wants to learn something from what we know, and we came up with a few topics that would be informative for every individual in such a large population of interest. We figured that most individuals could use training with the topic of professionally using social media, and we decided our subject reached out especially to graduating seniors who are searching for a job.

The world is continuously increasing in connectivity due to the internet, and students need to understand how social media is used by businesses if they desire to reach their full potential in their careers. After planning what subject we wanted to cover and who our audience was going to be, we began planning the training session: Social Media Appropriateness and Professionalism for Job Security. The event is taking place in Olin 112 this Friday, February 27th from 10:30am-11:30am. Representatives from Comm 215 (Social Media) will be providing a variety of training, including a LinkedIn briefing and a Twitter briefing, to individuals who come. We have done our very best to ensure the training session will be valuable to the people who attend. There are going to be different activities about a few different topics.

By covering a wide range of topics, our hope is that every person learns at least one new thing. We want to use what we have learned in Andy’s class, and supply other people with a solid foundation of understanding regarding the subject of professionalism in social media so their thoughts can continue to develop after the experience they have during training. If anyone is interested in attending, they definitely should! This is a free opportunity to learn new skills and develop a clearer understanding of social media’s relationship with employment.

Again, the session is this Friday, February 27th, from 10:30am-11:30am. We hope, for the benefit of others, that they come to Olin 112 to learn new skills and / or develop an awareness of how to professionally use social media: this is a topic most people could always improve on, and we want to help them learn how.

Hope to see you there!

Humanities Lab: #1

For the first time ever in Albion College history, four classes have come together to partake in what is now known as a Humanities Lab. There are two versions of this lab this semester, but I am in the one that is focused on learning about the outdoors and how humankind had to at one point, survive and live off of the land. I am in a class called “French Louisiana: Cajun and Creole Experiences,” taught by Dianne Guenin-Lelle. The other classes combined with mine for the Humanities Lab are Brad Chase’s “Ancient Civilizations,” Nels Christensen’s “Wild Things: The Literature of Wilderness and the Wild,” and Clatyon Parr’s “Briton Singers.”

What do these classes have to do with one another? I wondered the same thing. When we all came together, though, I can see how we all seemed to be studying similar ideas. From one direction or another, we are all approaching the study of how humans interact with the world around us, specifically early settlers moving to wild or foreign lands.

During this lab we did a lot of hands-on activities. After an introduction to the day’s schedule by Nels Christensen, we started with a trek out into the Nature Center where we looked for “food signs.” This could be anything from animal prints to animal poop. We documented what we found, and noted that if we needed to, we could track that animal down for dinner. (Luckily Baldwin was right up the street, so there was no need for that.)

Next we gathered back at the front of the nature center around a fire pit where listened and watched as Brad Chase made a sort of berry cobbler over the open flame. He told us that if had we actually been out there hunting for dinner and come back unsuccessful, we would have to eat something to survive. That something was a mixture of fruit, nuts, corn meal, and maple syrup boiled in a pot.

After we ate the savory, warm concoction, we escaped the cold and sat inside as we listened to the Briton Singers perform a piece that high lighted the loneliness that early settlers of foreign lands may have experienced. We ended with Dianne Guenin-Lelle’s presentation about the early settling of Louisiana.

This lab was about two and a half hours long, but it was surprisingly very fun and enjoyable. I felt like I had traveled back in time rather than simply walking a half mile to the Nature Center. I learned a lot and I cannot wait for our next lab.

Maggie: The Therapy Dog

For me, It has gotten to that point in the semester where all I want to do is head home and cuddle up with my family and puppy dog and watch movies by the fire without any worries. Unfortunately, it has also gotten to the point in the semester where course material is picking up  and tennis season is in full swing.

Although my family does not live too far away, I am still unable to pack up and head home to cuddle with my pup as frequently as I would like.

Enter, Maggie the Therapy Dog.
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Maggie and her owner Stacey visit campus on the 2nd and 4th weekend of each month from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm in the Kellogg Center to bring smiles and love to the students of Albion College, made possible by Student Health Services.

I have gotten to pet Maggie many times, and she has brightened my day on many occasions when I could use a smile from a furry friend. IMG_4571

Mauri in Memes

A few memes that I put together in honor of President Ditzler. He’s a dynamic leader, a passionate Briton, but most of all he’s Mauri Ditzler…the president of our fine institution. Here’s his presidency explained by memes:

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Dart Games and Snow Days

When I first applied to Albion, I had no idea what I wanted in a college. I have always been the type of person that dreams of big cities full of opportunities, so when I fell in love with Albion, everyone was a bit surprised, including me. What it came down to was that I like attention. Whether that is from coaches, teachers, and friends – I thrive from it. I knew I wasn’t going to get the attention I wanted from a school where I was just a number, so Albion seemed like the perfect place for me.

The first few weeks of my first year at Albion, nearly the entire campus participated in a game called the poison dart game. The game was simple, if someone called your name from across campus and you look at them in the eye, they could shoot a pretend poison dart at you and you would have to pretend you were dead until someone came to pull the pretend dart out. I know what you’re thinking – this sounds juvenile and immature – it probably was, but it was so much fun, and was an incredible way for people to get to know you as a freshman on a new campus.

Along with the other students, the staff really takes the time to get to know you as a person, not only as a student. The other day, Albion was hit with a pretty severe snowstorm, making it nearly impossible for staff to get to campus. Now, most of us believe we should have had a snow day, me included, but that’s beside the point. My Professor for my Pop Culture & Politics class decided to make class optional and we could come if we wanted. There were six of us that showed up. For the first part of class, we asked her questions about her life, and other random questions. I found this to be very intriguing afterwards, because this sort of occurrence just doesn’t happen at a large school. We then spoke about topics dealing with the class that interested us. This professor is also the same one that wrote my recommendation letter for my off-campus program that I participated in, as well as one of my references for my summer job I recently obtained.

I may dream of the big city full of opportunities, but I have learned that there are just as many opportunities on a campus like Albion’s. I have made so many relationships with other students, as well as the faculty. I am so happy to be back on campus this semester.

dart3 dart 4

Albion Does What It’s Supposed To

Every year Albion sends off its crop of new graduates to the world beyond to the sound of thunderous applause, Mauri’s grandfatherly intonation, and the sound of 1,244 parents’ and grandparents’ tears splashing on the quad. It’s a bittersweet moment.

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It was especially bittersweet for me last semester, knowing that in a year’s time, I would be the one wearing robes and funny hat with nothing to separate me from big blue yonder of the future but a piece of paper with a couple of signatures.

During my entire junior year, I became quite irate with my senior compatriots. To me it seemed that they were making everything overly dramatic. It didn’t matter if they were putting their laundry in the wash or sleeping through their alarm in the morning, everything they did, mundane or not, was a “The Last Time I’ll Ever _______” moment. It grew old.

I was reflecting on this emotion over break, when I was having a The Last Time I’ll Ever Be Able To Sit On My Mom’s Couch And Watch Netflix For 12 Straight Hours A Day For 6 Weeks moment. I always remember the seniors speaking about their The Last Time I’ll Ever (henceforth abbreviated as TLTIE) moments with sadness. But that’s not the entire picture.

Albion College is a four-year institution. With the exception of a few kids who stay an extra semester to student teach, everyone graduates in four years. Albion College does exactly what it’s supposed to do: it gives you a world-class education and then sends you out into the world to make a difference.

With that in mind, the TLTIE moments aren’t bad; if anything they’re something to be proud of. I should be happy this is the last time I have to trek across the quad to my 9:15; a year from now I’m going to be trekking across Africa designing low-cost healthcare equipment for developing nations.

OK, that’s a bit of a hyperbole.

Also, sitting on your butt for 6 straight months sort of hurts.

I’m still going to try my hardest to remember small detail I can about this semester. There will still be moments where I’m randomly hit with pangs of sadness about leaving this place. My point is that we should associate that feeling with all the good ways in which Albion has prepared us for the future. Not with bits of routine that have no significant meaning.

Excited

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To help me with this goal, I’m going to be blogging weekly about one TLTIE moment. But instead of being really mope-y and sad about it, I’m going to reflect about some aspect of Albion that has done exactly what it’s supposed to and changed the way I live my life for the outside world.

-closes computer. *Sigh* “This is the last first blog post of the semester I’ll ever write for the college…”-

That Networking Game

We all know the age old expression, “Its not what you know, it’s who you know,” but how many of us really take it seriously and do it right?

Is there even a right way to network?

Networking 5Well, there is definitely a wrong way. I was at an event recently – but not just any event – it was the kind of event where you could be rubbing elbows and bumping into the CEO of Ford or a major news castor and have no idea. Really, an ideal place to network, but only if you know how to play the game. It’s a soft and delicate balance between being aggressive enough with your message and still following all of the basic social rules. I found out that’s it’s harder to achieve than I might have thought; more often than not you walk away looking overly intense, rude, or just plain weird.

I tried to reverent back to the elevator speech that I had honed and polished in all of my Gerstacker and Communications classes but often just ended up stumbling over my words. Maybe that stuff would have worked in an actual elevator but at a high society event with all of Detroit’s elite it just didn’t seem like the way to go. They were out enjoying their night and who was I to come and bombard them with my personal plug? I had to schmooze with them, make them feel comfortable with me, and then slowly work it in. Sweet-talking someone really can be an art form, but they don’t teach that in a classroom.

Networking 4But what else are we supposed to do? Whether we’re trying to get internships, jobs, or just promoting a brand networking really is the key. Every job I have ever gotten, including babysitting gigs and my corporate one now (with the exception working at Little Caesars in high school), I’ve gotten because I know someone. So how do you meet all these people? How do you build that network without coming across wrong?

The truth is, you have to treat everything like a networking event, from family parties to a night out because you never know who you’re going to come in contact with and you might be surprised at the people they know. I found out at a family function that I have a relative who knows some pretty big people in the non-profit world – I’ve known her all my life but I never considered how much of a resource she could be to me. You really have to be alert and consider every person as a possible aid to you. The question “What do you do?” doesn’t have to just be small talk, it can be a tactful entrance into your own future.

NetworkingSo, treat everyday like a major networking event, but that’s not all. You must also rely on your network’s network. This might seem obvious since it’s the whole premise of Linkedin but it’s way more valuable without the computer screen. I can’t tell you how many connections I made in the time I was searching for a job. It seemed like every person my parents had ever met was coming out of the woodwork as a possible lead. Even though most of them didn’t turn into anything at the time, the seed was planted for me to reach out to them again later down the road. Since I’ve taken my job I’ve gotten multiple other offers from these random people I e-mailed with along the way. Thankfully, I don’t need them now but one day I might and when the time comes I’ll be thankful that I reached out to them in the first place.

That’s another thing – don’t be shy about all of it. Initially I was afraid of looking too desperate but the truth is, you’re in college, they already know you’re desperate and they want to help! Most people have been there, they know how real the struggle can be, and they might even have kids who are in the same position. I was so shocked to see how many people were so eager and willing to help me but the whole “right out of college” pity doesn’t last for long. You have to use it and take advantage while you can!

Networking 3Finally, my last piece of advice to all you job seekers out there, pay it forward! Don’t think that just because you’re all set in your nice little cubicle or whatever that this means you’re all done with the game. Besides for continuously trying to build your own network you should also be maintaining it so that when someone comes to you asking for a connection you can return the service that other’s gave to you. Your friends, siblings, significant other, and acquaintances will all need jobs at some point! How lucky are you if you’re already in a position and are able to help them? Think of it as good working karma, or as paying back your dues, either way it’s important to share the love.

Lets review – These are my rules and strategies (from the little experience that I have) on how to play the networking game:

  1. It’s not just what you have to say, it’s how you deliver it. Consider what’s appropriate for every situation.
  2. Treat everything like a networking event.
  3. Treat every person you meet as a potential connection, no one is to big or two small to approach. Consider that it’s not necessarily him or her that you’re after, but also the connections that they might have.
  4. Milk every ounce of help you can get.
  5. Like all things in life, pay it forward.

Hungry 4 Change

After reading Spencer White’s article in the Albion Pleaid on ways students can aid in helping the city of Albion, I stepped back and thought what else students can do to contribute to the rebirth of Albion.

As the clock ticked, my stomach started to grumble as it was getting late that night. Then, it hit me.

The reason I was hungry was because it was 12:30am and there was only one place open to get take out food in the entire city of Albion: McDonald’s.

Although there are many delicious restaurants in our city, most of them close at 9pm.

As a student athlete, McDonald’s wasn’t going to be ideal, so instead of spending around $5 that night on food, I saved that Lincoln and ate some mac and cheese.

A typical student is on campus roughly 32 weeks a year. If there was more options for food later in the night, I can see many students spending $5 twice a week which could come to 32x$10= $320 a year.

Now, let’s say 1/2 of Albion’s campus (650 people) also wanted a late night snack or fourth meal twice a week after studying in the library or hanging with friends which could come to $320×650= $208,000 a year.

Most students are on track for a four year degree which could potentially bring in $208,000×4=$832,000 to the city of Albion.

I understand there will be a cost for the restaurants staying open later, requiring them to purchase more food, a higher cost to operate the building, and require them to pay the employees for their time. I feel that the benefit will out way the cost and the city of Albion could benefit greatly by students supporting our local restaurants around the clock.

By bringing more people and money into the city of Albion, I feel that Albion can be a vibrant city once again.

Sunday Showdown

Dust off the ole jersey, whip-up some hearty wings and nachos, snag the cold drinks, and position that stained up/rundown recliner right in front of the TV, because ladies and gents….its time for NFL Super Bowl XLIX!

This Sunday, February 1 at 6:30pm EST on NBC, the New England Patriots take on the Seattle Seahawks at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

With heavy-hitters such as Marshawn Lynch and Richard Sherman from Seattle butting heads with the likes of Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski from New England. From the infamous “deflategate” scandal to popular or perhaps not so popular attitude of Richard Sherman this is game is gonna be one for the history books. So everyone grab your gear and cheer on your favorite team till the very end!

Little Moments

I have often experienced moments at Albion that remind me of how glad I am that I attend this college. These moments happen in big or little ways, whether that be by bonding with a professor through an interesting class topic or sharing a laugh with a friend over lunch.

Today this little moment came through an interaction with a stranger as I was going about my day:

After lunch I went over to the Ferguson administration building to pick up some easels for an upcoming sorority recruitment event. I took the elevator up to the third floor of Ferguson and asked the receptionist for the easels.

As I waited for someone else to go and bring up the easels, the receptionist chatted with me about the slippery, icy campus, my classes this semester, and my major and interests. She was very nice and easy to talk to; just talking to a friendly face with such enthusiasm put me in a better mood for the day.

When the other woman returned with the easels, I thanked her and started to be on my way. I ran into a problem, however, when I tried to carry them out with me. You see, I was already carrying a large box that I received in the mail for my birthday the previous day (woo hoo!). It was a large box full of packaging peanuts that surrounded an edible arrangement. It was a nice gesture from my parents, but at that moment, just a huge mess.

The receptionist noticed my struggle and suggested I call and ask a friend to help me carry everything. As I took her advice and started to “call for help,” in between my phone calls we laughed about my predicament, joking about how I could bribe people to help me with the goodies I had just received in the mail, or plotting what pranks I could pull with the copious packaging peanuts.

My friend Hannah eventually showed up with her car, however there was still no way for me to get down the stairs. The receptionist saw this and went looking for a bag for me to take the arrangement out of the box and place in the bag. She even took care of disposing the box for me. She was so helpful and kind throughout all of this, and we both laughed as I left and stepped into the elevator, easels in hand.

This was a small encounter in my day, only about 15 minutes or so, yet I left the office with a smile on my face with a sense of pride with the school I attend. I love it at Albion College, and a large part of that is due to the exceptional character of the people here.

 

Less is More

As a student at Albion you look around yourself and say, “WOW, How lucky am I to be surrounded by such smart, world changing, talented, and insightful people?”

During my last semester on campus I knew that each of my classmates were about to go into the world and do incredible things. I stood there on graduation day and knew that I was standing next to America’s future politicians, professors, physicians, and professionals.  Dannie’s success is a testament to this, yet is only a small just part of the success that our class has seen since leaving that beautiful campus almost a year ago.

As alumni, we root so hard for each other. We encourage the current students and we cheer for the alumni who came before us, but I don’t think there’s anything more personal and fulfilling than the success we see in our peers – those who are in the same stage of life as us, who were there through all the hard and incredible times – and to me there’s no one that I’m cheering louder for than Jane Finkel and Brian Spencer.

Less-is-More-Amid-the-Flowers-Music-InformOkay, so Brian graduated the year before I did, but the point stands. These two have shown exactly what it means to be young and to go out and fight for your dreams. To me, these two epitomize what it means to be part of our generation of college graduates. They worked their tails off recording the debut album, Amid the Flowers, for their band Less is More; coordinated and executed a cross country tour, the Time Isn’t Money Tour; and made sure to give back to everyone they could along the way.

How do I know this? Well because I’m a giant stalker and huge fangirl of course.

Don’t judge me.

1620930_284159951737600_327451321_nI followed every blog post from their tour and have listened to their album pretty much constantly since it was released – it’s AMAZING! I invited practically everyone I knew to their homecoming show in Lansing last month and have heard pretty much every podcast interview I could find that featured them as guests. Why? Because they are unbelievably talented musicians, because they are fellow Brits, and because that’s what we do.

Albion’s always preaching about this incredible alumni network we have and this is it. We are so lucky to have some of the most inspirational young minds on campus, each of which has the potential to be AMAZING, and it is our job to support each other.

So, this weekend, go support Brian and Jane! They’re playing in The KC Stack on Saturday starting at 9 PM and I guarantee it’s going to be spectacular (they’re outstanding live). The whole campus should be there. Whether you had a class with one of them or not, whether you never met them or are their besties, it doesn’t matter. Go. Go listen to some fantastic music, go support Euphonics beforehand at 7 PM, and go celebrate your fellow Brits.

Jane and BrianFollow Less is More on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Spotify, and their website.