Friday, April 11, 2014

Founder's Hall!



Hi all!

Today I wanted to talk about Founder's Hall. 

Founder's Hall from the front (image from here!)
First, I'll start off with a fun fact. When St. Mike's opened in 1904, Founder's Hall was the entire college. It contained classrooms, the dorms, and the dining hall! Hard to believe that we have expanded so much in the past one hundred and ten years!

Founder's Hall is still in use today. It contains offices like the Registrar, the Dean's office, and the President's office.. These offices may not be something we think about every day, but when we need them they can be a huge help!!

This yellow building is attached to Founder's Hall and called Founder's Annex. In this building, you will find an assortment of offices, including the Financial Aid office.


Founder's Annex!
The top part of the building actually inspired the Saint Michael's College logo. The tower with a cross can be seen in many of the SMC insignia.

 



Most students visit Founder's Hall to visit the Registrar's office. The Registrar's office is where you go to declare a major or minor, change your adviser, or get a copy of your transcript. You can also talk to the Registrar about transferring credits and registering for classes. 

Outside the Registrar's office, they have a bulletin board with lots of helpful information. This bulletin board includes information like every professor's office, and which classes have seats available in them. 

A festive Founder's bulletin board!
The door on the right is the Registrar's office!
Hope that gave you some information about a really important building on campus! As always, if you have any questions about Founder's Hall or SMC life in general, feel free to contact me!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Campus in Winter

Founder's Hall covered in icicles
Before I was a student at St. Mike's, but after I had decided to come here, many people asked me where I was going to college. I would tell them, and the reaction was usually the same-- both "Oh, my niece/uncle/best friend/acquaintance's aunt's best friend went there and they LOVED it!" and "Wow, I hope you like the cold!"

A very snowy view out my bedroom window
Lucky for me, I do like the cold! On my tours, a lot of people ask how we survive the cold up here, and really, I too once thought that the nonchalance to the cold was weird. I can remember on my Accepted Students Day when I was a high school senior, it had just snowed. As my mother and I were walking across campus, I saw a kid walking around in shorts, a T-shirt, and sandals. In snow. I thought he was about the craziest person ever, and I still would never brave the cold without my coat and boots, but I kiiiiiiind of understand where we was coming from. After you're subjected to the long winters of Vermont for a few months, it really is not so bad.

Winter sunsets are the best
And winters up here are just so darn pretty. The sunrise and sunset seem impossibly vibrant shades of pink and orange against the cold sky, and I love the way the sun glimmers off the fresh snow in the mornings.



A nice sunset over the 100s
So today, I thought I would just share some of my favorite pictures of the St. Mike's campus covered in that powdery white stuff... 

Sunrises over fresh snow make the cold walk to my 8am class worth it.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me! Happy Wednesday, everyone :)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Spring Semester!

Spring semester is finally in full swing! I've been back on campus for almost two weeks and have been adjusting to classes, campus life, and the cold!

The view out my window: a winter wonderland


This semester is going to be really busy, but I'm excited for what it has in store. Here are a few examples of what I'm excited for...

1. Classes

My classes for the semester seem really interesting so far. Here's my schedule for the semester

Insects and Society: M/W 11-12:05, LAB M 1:30-3:30
Intro to Cultural Anthropology T/TH 8-9:35
Teaching Writing T/TH 9:45-11:20
Aztec Goddess/Christian Madonna T/TH 1:15-2:50

This semester is kind of all over the place-- I have a biology class, a religious studies class, an English class, and an anthropology class but it's really keeping things interesting.

The Insects and Society class is to fulfill the lab science component of the liberal arts curriculum here at St. Mike's. At first I was really nervous to take a science class because science is SO not my thing, but I'm finding it really enjoyable and actually kind of interesting. I'll definitely be posting more about taking a science class as a non-major.

Intro to Cultural Anthropology is certainly going to take me out of my comfort zone. The entire purpose of the class is to challenge the way we look at things and examine culture. My professor has done field work in Nepal and South Sudan, so it's really neat to hear her talk about her experiences. The class seems like it's going to involve a lot of interesting articles and documentaries and I'm excited for it!
Founder's hall in the snow! Love the icicles...
Teaching Writing is the class that you take before you work in the Writing Center on campus.  The Writing Center is located in the library and is open for any student to go receive help with their writing. We're learning a lot about learning styles and how to coach people into becoming successful writers. This class includes spending 2 hours outside of class in the Writing Center getting hands on experience.

Aztec Goddess/Christian Madonna is a religious studies class that I'm taking to fulfill the religious studies requirement. I grew up attending Catholic schools and this is, roughly, my 14th religion class. Yet, it's about mesoamerican goddesses which is something I have never learned about before. I like learning about different religions and am excited to see what I learn in this class!

2. Giving Tours!

I'm lucky enough this semester to have a weekly tour spot! I will be giving tours every Friday at 10:30am. I know that my tour at St. Mike's is what really sold the school for me, and I really enjoy giving tours to prospective students. It's a great chance to show people how awesome it is to go to school here and see if it's a good fit for them. I give my first official weekly tour tomorrow and I am pumped!
Sunset over a snowy campus

3. Vermont Weather

This is going to sound weird, but I am actually enjoying the very, very cold front we are experiencing this week. Now that I've been living in Vermont for a year and a half, I know how to deal with the cold. A big puffy jacket, a hat, scarf, and some mittens and I am good to go. It's cold, but the far edge of the St. Mike's campus is a 10 minute walk in any direction so there's no reason to be outside for too long.

There's a weird sort of kinship that comes from living through this level of cold. I also find myself lingering with friends longer, because I would rather hang out than go face the cold. It's great to be reunited with my friends here after a month apart.

Also, campus looks so pretty covered in snow!

Anyways, this was just a quick update to let you know what I'm excited for over the next few months. I'll be sure to update again soon! If you have any questions about SMC, please contact me!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Finding My Faith at SMC

Hello blog!

Today I want to blog about something I've been thinking about for awhile: my faith journey at St. Mike's.

Growing up, I went to Catholic schools. My family isn't very religious, but I received the sacraments and was Confirmed. Religion was always there, but I did not have to seek it out. I had periods of really liking the religious presence in my schools, and periods of really disliking it. My faith relationship before college was really all over the board.

When I came to college, I wasn't sure exactly what role my faith was going to play in my life. Would I ever go to church? Would I be actively involved in the faith community? Would I ever go to mass?It was really up to me.

On my tours, I get asked a lot, "how religious is St. Mike's really?"

Well, the answer truly is that you get to determine how active faith is in your life. College in general is all about becoming an adult and learning to make your own decisions and your faith is not excluded from this.

When it came to my personal decision, I decided I would see what VITA, the campus ministry group, was all about. VITA had a social the first week of my First Year and I decided to attend it. It was held in the Upper Room of the Chapel, and we had snacks and learned exactly what VITA did. It was a community unlike any I had experienced before: VITA can be described as a "faith in action" group.

Me (right) at the very first VITA social I attended!

I was so warmly welcomed that I knew I had to come back. Most of VITA's programming is on Wednesday night with LINK and Dessert and the Divine. LINK meets most Wednesdays and is a large faith sharing group. On any given week, about 10-20 people gather to talk about their week and reconnect with God. Dessert and the Divine meets once a month to share some delicious desserts and come together as a group to have a discussion. Connections, which meets on Thursday evenings, is a small, scripture based, faith sharing group. VITA also puts on socials throughout the year like Pumpkin Carving and a Girls' Night!

VITA Girls' Night family style dinner!

All dressed up for Halloween at LINK!

I quickly made great friends in the VITA community and found myself in the Upper Room most Wednesdays during my First Year. VITA is perfect for me for a few reasons. It is student led, which I particularly like. Though my faith is stronger than it has ever been, it is nice to be surrounded by people who are on their own faith journeys. VITA is made up of my peers. They are some of the kindest, most welcoming people I have ever met and I am so happy to be friends with so many of them. It's a diverse group of people: we have people in all parts of their faith journey in all years. We even have some people who don't identify as Catholic or Christian who join us for the conversation and it's always a great time.  I see God so easily in the friends I have made here.

This year, I was given the opportunity to be on the leadership Team for VITA. I lead Dessert and the Divine (along with the super awesome Kate!) once a month. I feel so blessed to be able to help lead the group and create the awesome environment in which my faith blossomed. I was super nervous before leading my first meeting but everything worked out and I'm really excited to lead one again next week. I find myself really blessed this year to have such a phenomenal team to work with.

VITA Team 2013-2014
(L-R) Tim, Maura, Colleen, Emily, Kate
Kelly, Lauren, Alex, Katie

I hope this (somewhat long-winded) blog post sheds some light on what your faith life can look like at Saint Michael's College. I would love to chat with you if you have any questions about it, so feel free to contact me!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful week!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Nearly Wordless Wednesday: Fall



Fall has finally arrived at St. Mike's.

The air is crisp. Alliot has had pumpkin cookies. The leaves are getting crunchy and ripe for stepping on-- one of my personal favorite fall activities on campus.

Yesterday, I took my first trip to the nature trail, located behind the 300s Townhouses. It's a beautiful trail, and well removed from campus. I went into the woods for the purpose of taking pictures with a group, but left feeling very refreshed and in awe of the beauty of my campus.

I am so very lucky to get to spend fall somewhere so beautiful.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Leading my first Dessert and the Divine!

Hey there everyone!

I know I've neglected the blog a bit lately- sorry! This year started and work was on full speed from day one. Luckily, after two exams and a paper due at the end of last week, I get a bit of a breather this weekend and I can finally update!!

This year, I've been incredibly lucky to become a part of the VITA team. VITA is the peer to peer ministry group at St. Mike's and I joined them as the new co-leader of Dessert and the Divine! Dessert and the Divine meets the last Wednesday of the month and includes yummy desserts and discussion about God in a "family table" setting. It's a lot of fun and I am having a great time working with my co-leader, Kate!

Kate and I leading Dessert and the Divine on Wednesday! (photo cred: the lovely Alex!)
For the theme of the first Dessert and the Divine, we discussed how we spend our time and if we have a good balance. The first month back at college can be a huge adjustment: to your classes, your living situation, to the schoolwork. It can be easy to balance all of that with a strong relationship with God, so we got a chance to discuss how to work on that and eat delicious cupcakes.

Cupcake construction zone
 We had over 70 mini cupcakes, 4 colors of frosting, and various toppings like sprinkles and M&Ms. The cupcakes represented our weeks and the different frosting colors and toppings represented how we spend our weeks. The purpose of this activity was to reflect on what we fill our time with. We had to ask ourselves if we were spending too much time with friends, or not enough time on schoolwork. It was a chance to consider if we were doing a good job of bringing our relationship with God with us to every part of our week.
L-R Katie, Mary-Kate, Kristen, Jake, Amanda, Ellen
I feel really blessed to be leading Dessert and the Divine. VITA has been such a positive influence in my life over the past year and I'm happy to give back. It's nice to help provide a space that can give to others what I received. On Wednesday, I was a little worried that no one would come to Dessert and the Divine. It was a busy week and seemed like everyone was working on some project or studying for some exam. But in the end, fifteen people came out and I think everyone had a good time.

Just wanted to do a quick shout out to my grandmother for letting me borrow her hand mixer to make frosting- thanks Mammie!

Anyways, hopefully updates from me won't take as long here on out. If you have any questions about campus ministry or SMC life in general, feel free to contact me! Have a great week everyone!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Summer Recap!

Hi everyone!

As you can see, my blog has been completely redesigned! It's a new school year and I thought a new look was in order. The summer is winding down and I'm getting ready to move back into school in a few days... so I thought I would do a quick recap of what I've been up to this summer.

May

I got to visit my friend Charlie! He's in the Army and was stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia. My first trip to the south!

Fort Benning entrance



National Infantry Museum, Columbus, GA


I met my nephew, Ayden, for the first time.

I'm a proud Auntie :)
I got to go to my high school's graduation ceremony!
Congrats Emily and KJ!


June

I worked. A lot.

I also got to see my little sister get an Academic award for her achievements in French!

Yay, Jessie!
July

I got to see Colleen while she was in Massachusetts for Fourth of July!
Colleen and I got lunch!
Said goodbye to my friend KJ before she left for CityYear DC.
Emilysx2 and KJ, aka The Breakfast Club
I got to go back to Georgia to help Charlie move! He was being transferred to Fort Lewis in Washington state, so I helped him pack up and accompanied him on the road trip. It was my first chance to see America outside of the east coast and it was absolutely awe inspiring. I think everyone should take a cross country road trip at some point!

Tennessee River

While driving through Kansas, we saw a huge windmill farm. It was beautiful at sunset.

View of California from Klamath Falls, OR

August

Every year in August, my family takes a vacation to Laconia, NH. We had a great time this year, and I got to spend plenty of quality time with my nephew before I go back to school. When I see him again, it will be Thanksgiving!

Sunset over Lake Winnipesaukeee!

Ayden's rocking his Saint Michael's bib!

While I was up in NH, I got to see my friend and fellow SMCer, Taylor!

Then, most recently, I had to say goodbye to my friend Emily who is off to Loyola Chicago. Sadness :( but I'm so proud of her!

Emily x2
As you can see, it's been a busy summer! But I'm ready to get packed and on my way back north to Vermont! Look for a post soon about surviving Orientation.

Hope you have a great week, everyone!