Favorite Part of Italy

Favorite Part of Italy

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I believe every person has his or her favorite part to each vacation. I just got back from Italy, and in my opinion, my favorite moment was singing in The Pantheon. It happened at the end of our choir tour in Rome, where we had spent almost three hours walking around, taking pictures and learning all about the city. Finally we came to The Pantheon and since Dr. Shearer had mentioned to the choir that we might perform an impromptu concert, we all went straight to him at the end of the tour to ask. He said to get into a big circle and choose a song to sing. We all agreed to sing “E’en So Lord Jesus Quickly Come.” As we began to sing, people started to stop and gather around us. You could feel all the eyes in the room watching us. I noticed a few people taking pictures and videos of us, which was a great feeling because people were actually enjoying watching us perform.

As we left, there was still that energy and intensity in myself that felt so amazing. A few people even stopped me before we left and told me that we sounded amazing and they really enjoyed hearing us. The experience was truly my favorite. Even though we did perform in three other churches while in Italy, this was my favorite performance and really inspired music in me to come out for the rest of the week.

I am adding a video that I had found of this performance and trust me, it sounds amazing, so please take a listen.

Viva Las Vegas!

Viva Las Vegas!

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As promised, this post will sum up my recent trip to Vegas with my mom! We had a blast! Vegas was nothing like I had imagined; the city was so overwhelming with people everywhere, flashing lights and so, so much more.

We spent a great deal of time taking advantage of all of the fabulous shops that Vegas has to offer — that was our favorite part! We also spent time laying out by the pool. We stayed at the Paris hotel and the mock Eiffel Tower was right above us while we laid out in the sun. The food there came in a close second when it came to my favorites about the trip — all you can eat crab legs? Yes, please!

The Billboard Music Awards were being filmed the weekend we were there, so we were definitely on the lookout for stars… unfortunately we didn’t see any in person. However, we knew they were everywhere! Singer Nicki Minaj performed in a bar in our hotel on our last night there!

Speaking of famous people… We went to see a stand-up comedy show put on by Tim Allen! I love Tim Allen, always have. Imagine my excitement when we found out he was performing while we were there. He was absolutely hilarious! Nothing like “Tim ‘The Tool Man’ Taylor,” though… but still good!

My mom had always talked about taking me to Vegas when I finally turned 21; I just can’t believe it came so quick! We waited until school was out for the summer to make our trip; definitely a great way to end the school year and start the summer! The Indians are still on a roll! They just swept the Reds! This week holds the home-stand against the Boston Red Sox and I am extremely excited to be a part of that! As I’ve mentioned before, this job is amazing! I can’t wait to keep you updated on the rest of the season!

-samantha

GO TRIBE!

Ciao from Italy!!

Ciao from Italy!!

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Well was what the Mount Union Concert Choir was saying for a week in Italy on the 2011 Choir Tour. The choir spent five days in lovely Florence, Sienna, Rome, and Vatican City, the weather was beautiful, the food was amazing and of course of music sounds fantastic.

The trip began the day after Mother’s day in Cleveland-Hopkins airport,and may I just say an eight hour flight is a very long one. When we finally did land though, we took a three hour bus ride to Siena and had an entire day there full of walking and shopping and lots of eating. In my group, we had pizza at a small restaurant and it was really nice, but my favorite part of the day was going to The Duomo in Sienna. There was an amazing stairway on the side of this building and it was so fun to climb up. As we continued to walk around the city there were many small coves and stores that we found and had such a great first day.

Day one ended in Montecatini, which was were the choir spent two days. The city was very small and made it very easy for a some students to do some late night shopping. I will warn anyone who has never traveled over seas your bed may be a bit tiny and the temperature controls are in Celsius.

Be sure to keep checking for more stories of the trip to Italia and any stories from the choir

Tying up the loose ends

Tying up the loose ends

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I just got off the phone with the registrar at Mount Union because I got an e-mail yesterday about my classes.  It said in the e-mail that I am missing one English class to fulfill my minor. EEK.  As I’ve mentioned before, I’m graduating early so I will be done in December and I wanted to get this schedule figured out ASAP so I will definitely be able to graduate when I want to.  :]

I picked up another English class so that minor will be complete, dropped one class that I changed my mind about and picked up two more one-credit courses.  I am good to go for next semester!

That’s another one of the many things that I love about Mount.  The faculty is soo nice.  I mean, I haven’t talked to many other registrars at other schools but ours is very personable and wants students to be able to achieve whatever they want to.  The teachers are also super nice and personable; that is just one of the perks to going to a smaller school. The teachers are able to dedicate more time to their students because they have less of them.  Even the deans at our school and the president are constantly around and available to chat with.  I’m sure some students at big schools have never even seen their president and deans!

Right before that phone call, I was on the phone with the Columbia Gas company trying to change the gas bill over from my name since I’m not living in that house at school anymore.  Next year I will be living in the new apartments on Union Ave. that are still being built and I am sooo excited! However, when you move out of a house, it is important to make sure to get your name off of the bills or else you will have to keep paying for them.  :[

I feel like all of my friends are on vacation right now. Everyone just seemed to leave at the same time and I’m stuck here working!  It’s okay though because I work tonight and the next three days but then I’m off for three days and I have a mini-vacation planned.  I will write about that next week I’m sure :)

Hope everyone is enjoying themselves this summer so far!  I see good weather coming about in our near future… fingers crossed!!

-Shannon

Cavs get #1!!!

Cavs get #1!!!

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Cleveland sport teams have been on a roll recently. Joining the recent phenomenal form of the Indians (coined the “WINdians”) comes news from the 2011 N.B.A. draft lottery for draft picks which will occur next month.

Just one year after Lebron James decided to take his talents to South Beach, the Cleveland Cavaliers have landed two of the top five picks from this year’s lottery which now positions them perfectly to grab some of the hot talent we’ve all been watching from this year’s March Madness.

The last time Cleveland had the #1 overall pick, they choose standout Lebron James. Now, seven years later they have a chance to grab another chance to grab another player who, although not the physical presence of Lebron, brings his own tactical and special talents to the table; Kyrie Iriving.

We still have to wait for the actual draft to be able to see what happens, but I know that a lot of Mount Union students (who happen to be some extremely dedicated Ohio sport fans) we’re really excited to hear the news. Let’s go Cavs!

Best. Summer. Ever.

Best. Summer. Ever.

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We haven’t even been out of school for a month and I am already having the best summer ever!

I’ve made a lot of time in my schedule to catch up with some friends from home that I haven’t seen in a while due to us all attending different schools. Since the Cleveland weather has provided us with a few nice days, we’ve went on bike rides, beach visits, roller-blading trips and exciting nights out. That’s another thing I love about college; while you have to take some time away from your friends to all go to different schools, when you come back for breaks, it’s like you were never even apart.

My boyfriend came up to visit this past weekend and, well, the Cleveland weather wasn’t so nice… however, we were able to go to the Great Lakes Science Center and enjoy a day running around there like we were still in elementary school — don’t judge … college kids can have fun too :] We also watched the movie “Tornado Alley” that was playing in the IMAX Theater.

However, the best part of the summer so far would definitely have to be my summer job. As you know, it is with the Cleveland Indians, and by reading my previous posts you know I love the team very much. As I’ve mentioned, I’ve worked for them for a couple of years now, but no experience comes close to this one!

I get to be down at almost every home game and I am out there cheering with the fans. I could not ask for a better summer job. The people I work with are awesome, not to mention that there are six Mount Union students on our team. There are also a bunch of other Mount Union students working down at the ballpark whether it is through volunteering or internships; that makes it a lot of fun to run into my friends during the game. That’s not even including all of the Purple Raiders that make the trip up to Cleveland to go to the games … they come from all over! I guess that’s what happens when your city has a winning team. Ha Ha!

Progressive Field is a little community in itself, though. All of the employees in all of the different departments automatically become friends just because of the atmosphere. Like I said, it’s awesome!

If you’re wondering where I was Friday night when Travis Hafner hit that homerun to win the game against Seattle… I was up in the outfield with one of the other Mount students I work with, cheering with the crowd and having the best time ever. After that, we ran down to the field to celebrate with the rest of our team and we stayed on the field during the fireworks. What a great time!

I will definitely be keeping you all posted on my life down at the ballpark — it will keep getting more and more exciting! (Did you see the score of last night’s game?! 19-1?!?!)

This week holds plenty of excitement because I am going to Vegas with my mom on Thursday! Next post will be all about my trip so make sure to check back next week!

-samantha

Experiences that College Students Have?

Experiences that College Students Have?

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Some people come to college thinking life is a party and I am here to enjoy it. Others believe that you are at college to find your career and then graduate. I however came to college hoping to gain experience, and so far after my first year I believe I have gained quiet a bit of experience. From things that I did with my friends to the classes I’ve taken as well as talking to my professors – I’ve gained a lot of experience and have learned so much.

My mom had always told me that my life is a puzzle, anytime something happens … I make a new friend, new boyfriend, have a dramatic day or anything for that matter … that they are all pieces of my puzzle. As my freshman year of college comes to an end I believe that I have gained a few puzzle pieces along the way. I began my Mount Union adventure when I went to marching band camp. The first night of being there I met my best friend and we are still best friends today. She is like my twin. We share so many stories, and I am so glad to have her in my life. As my first semester continued, I made many other friends. In fact, something that really popped out at me were that some of the guys I knew in marching band had a band of their own, Ram In the Bush. If you haven’t heard of them I would highly suggest listening to some of their music on Facebook or even coming to one of their live performances. They have just released a new CD and it actually has a full storyline behind the music and includes an orchestra. Anyone in the Mount Union community should really try and support this local band. Supporting local music is very important. So if you know someone who is in a band, go and listen to them because it really helps with everything the musical community is trying to accomplish. Also, if anyone is interested, I am adding a video of Ram in the Bush to this post. Please take a moment to listen.

I just also got back from my first choir tour – the amazing part was we spent it in … Italy!! This was the best investment I have made and I am so glad that the school gave me this opportunity to take such an amazing trip. Keep reading as I post more about the trip and any other stories I receive from the other members of the choir.

So if you are just beginning your college experience or are just about finishing it up, take everything you learned and experienced and add to your own puzzle. I truly hope that it turns out to be a masterpiece.

Rain, rain, please go away!

Rain, rain, please go away!

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This weather is ridiculous. I thought it was supposed to be “April showers bring May flowers” ?? It’s been raining almost every day. Ugh … it makes it seem a little less like summer. :[

Tuesday, the one day it didn't rain this week, the boyfriend and I went to the Cleveland Zoo. I absolutely looove it there! I am such a huge fan of all animals and my favorite animals in the entire world are giraffes so I always take a ton of pictures with them. Also, the elephants are back with a whole new setup and it looks really nice. It was a beautiful day to be outside and then after that we went to Dave & Busters and played games for the rest of the night. It's so nice when I get a day off to just have some fun. :]

As I’ve been talking about in my past posts, I recently started at the Winking Lizard Tavern and went through nine days of extensive training and tests. It’s been so fun and I’ve loved the challenge of learning new things but it’s sooo awesome that my training is finally over!! I started serving on my own last night and it went great. It was Friday the 13th but thankfully nothing scary happened.  They have me scheduled a lot this upcoming week so I’m really excited! I LOVE my new job :]

A lot of college students still haven’t even taken finals yet and it’s so nice that I was able to train for two weeks already and be ready to start this job. That, as I’ve said before, is one of the many things I love about Mount Union. :]

-Shannon

Preparation for New Students

Preparation for New Students

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Although we, the current students of Mount Union, have left campus for the summer, the University has not slowed down a bit since we left. Driving back up to campus today, it hit me how nice and beautiful our campus really is. With the grass cut, trees pruned and lakes sparkling, the whole presentation is really something to see in person.

The campus is getting all dolled up primarily for the new students that will be visiting over the summer as we near the coming semester in the fall. Much like a first date, you want to make sure you are cleaned up and looking sharp for the meeting. Mount Union has undoubtedly succeeded on this front and looks stunning. Kudos to all of the students and staff responsible for helping out.

I know we just got back home and have settled in for about a week, but if you find yourself with a need to drive through Alliance, or back to Mount, be sure to take a little time to wander around campus. I think the actual “Mount Union Experience ©” started when we first walked on campus as freshmen. Take some time to reminisce and enjoy the view.

Mount Union’s commencement

Mount Union’s commencement

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As I’ve mentioned before, this past weekend was Mount Union’s 165th Commencement Ceremony… Fun fact – this year’s class was the FIRST class to graduate from The University of Mount Union. Pretty cool, eh?

I was in attendance for this year’s Commencement because my boyfriend and some of my friends were in the graduating class. Let’s just say the tears started about two hours before the ceremony! I’m such a sap for events like these.

Mount’s Commencement Ceremony was held in the Peterson Field House of The MAAC — it looked absolutely beautiful! It is so funny because usually there are people running around the track, playing tennis, jumping hurdles, etc… Now, there were hundreds of chairs, flowers, flags… A perfect spot for graduation! If it were outside, the ceremony would have been held on the south lawn Chapman Hall, but no, Ohio spring has been full of showers! Oh well, it was still perfect.

The ceremony lasted about two hours… sounds like a drag, right? Actually, it wasn’t! All of the speakers were entertaining and nothing seemed like it was dragging on… in fact, it went kind of fast. I’ll admit it, I shed some tears watching my friends walk across that stage and receive their diplomas. I can’t believe that it will be me up there in one year. Where did time go?

Mother’s Day was the next day and my mom and I went to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo for the day. It was free for moms so, as you could imagine, it was so crowded! We still had a great time! The new elephant exhibit is amazing — I definitely suggest you make a trip there at least once this summer!

The sun is finally shining and the rain has (maybe temporarily) gone away — I have sunburn to prove it! Hope you all are enjoying the sunshine!

-samantha

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