Top 10 Random Awesome Things

Top 10 Random Awesome Things

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Watch the video LAST. If you watch it early, it will take away the excitement of knowing why it is #1 on this list.

I’ve decided to make a Top 10. Everyone loves a good Top 10 of anything and if it is awesome, then who wouldn’t want to read it? I’ve recently been excited about a few things lately, things that have or haven’t even happened yet. Basically, just read this list and I hope something on it makes you smile.

10. Back to the Future: Trilogy. Travel back in time with a Delorean? I’ve seen these movies multiple times and I keep finding new things I didn’t realize before. Good job Spielberg. These movies had action, comedy, romance, time travel and even a dog. Back to the Future is awesome.

9. History section of the library. There are very few people in the history section of the library, which means I am able to get my studying, homework and blogs completed. The history section, it’s awesome.

8. Gerard Butler. I realized that I have a man crush on him. He is always the toughest and manliest in movies, and he always wins. He also was the Phantom in the Phantom of the Opera and has an amazing voice. I don’t sing well. It doesn’t matter if I sing well, it only matters if girls think I sing well and it is a lot easier to get girls when you have a voice like Gerard Butler. Gerard Butler, he’s awesome.

7. Christmas sweaters. They are only in fashion for about a month and everyone notices when you wear one. They are usually made with love or in China, but they are always warm and people are usually uber jealous of your sweater. Christmas sweaters, they are awesome.

6. People who read my blog. I like attention just like any other person and when people read my blogs and tell me nice job, it’s a good feeling. I like writing, but I never see my audience or hear their applause. The only way I know is if there is a comment or if someone tells me they read it. Readers are awesome.

5. Women that don’t wear make-up. Most men would agree, we prefer a woman without make up and also dyed hair. I don’t mind girls with make up or dyed hair, I just have simple preferences. Women without make-up are awesome.

4. Letters in the mail. I’ve already made a post about this, but simply getting a letter from a friend in the mail makes my day way better. Friends that send me letters are awesome.

3. Anything free. Free t-shirts, free scholarships (money), free food, free massages, free Play-Doh, free socks and free laundry, etc. Free stuff is awesome and usually comes at no cost to you, which is what makes it free. Free stuff is awesome.

2. Peaches. I just love peaches. They are awesome. The Presidents of the United States of America even made a song about peaches titled “Peaches.” Peaches are awesome.

1. This video. I love dancing and it is fun for everyone, no matter what style. These people are insane. They are awesome.

This list isn’t the most awesome thing in the world, but I hope it brought you into my little world for just a few minutes. I like to change things up once in awhile. Next semester will be interesting since I have only one class on Tuesday and for the first time I start class at 9 a.m. instead of 8 a.m. This is awesome.

Different Way to Think of Studying

Different Way to Think of Studying

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I am not the best with names. If I meet you once and you don’t make a memorable first impression, I won’t remember your name the next time I see you. If you do something out of the ordinary though, I will remember your name. When I see someone every day, I am obviously going to remember this or her name whether I want to or not.

In high school, I never studied and I passed comfortably, but I know I could have done better if I applied myself. College is obviously different when it comes to studying. I have to study more often and not just the night before.

Learning new material is just like learning a person’s name. Sometimes you can remember something if it is so out of the ordinary, but not everything you learn is going to be like that. You have to see the person more than once to get his or her name in your head, and the more you get to know the person, the more you understand them. When you study material for multiple days, the better you will understand it. You can get the basics of it, but won’t fully understand it until you rehearse it multiple times for multiple days.

Repetition, repetition, repetition. That is basically what it comes down to. Finals are coming up, so start slowly getting familiar with those names and by the time finals come, you’ll be best friends with your exam.

Livin on a prayer, baby

Livin on a prayer, baby

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So, it’s senior year, half end of the first semester and it’s finals time… can you say stressed out? It is just that time of year where the work piles up and the weather gets gloomy. Everyone goes through it no matter how old you are or where you are.

I always say that Mount Union is in such a perfect location because it is so easy for me to just escape for a while. I was able to take a couple of nice trips home lately to just relax and take my mind off everything before I had to crack down and get my work done. Everyone needs to get away once in a while. My home is only an hour away from school … not too far, not too close.

Finals are right around the corner and the end of the semester is near. Can you believe the year is half way over?! Unbelievable. Cue: Bon Jovi – Livin’ on a Prayer.

It is starting to get very surreal. My last Thanksgiving break, my last Christmas break… Crazy.

Luckily, a lot of the projects I have been working on lately have been super fun. I’ll be sure to post a blog letting you know what I’ve been up to. See, being a communication major does have its perks!

Remember to Always Give Thanks

Remember to Always Give Thanks

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The Thanksgiving holiday is one that many people look forward to as it is a day in which you are able to see family members that you may not have seen in a while, watch some exciting displays of football and, of course, a day where you can eat as much as you want and not be judged by others. What many people don’t realize or tend to forget is that the Thanksgiving holiday is about much more than just that. I mean think of the word Thanksgiving itself … it contains two meaningful words – thanks and giving. And, that’s exactly what Thanksgiving is about. It’s about giving thanks and simply appreciating what you have.

Often enough, people get so caught up in their everyday lives that they take things for granted, forgetting to acknowledge and appreciate what they do have. People ask for more and more, especially as the Christmas season rolls in, instead of being grateful for what they do have. Many people in today’s world are less fortunate and well off. Many cannot even afford three meals a day or daily necessities such as clothes or toothpaste. Therefore, it’s important to stop and give thanks for what you do have not only on this wonderful holiday but everyday. So what are you thankful for?

Well, I’m thankful for many things. First off, I am thankful for my family as I would not be where I am or who I am today without them. They are my entire world and support system. Secondly, I am thankful for my amazing friends. They truly are the best that anyone could ever ask for. They are there for me no matter what and make my life meaningful, and they are the true meaning of friendship! Thirdly, I am thankful for the wonderful relationships I have made here at Mount Union and for the unique opportunities I have been given. Mount Union has opened many doors for me and presented me with many experiences that I know have and will change my life. Lastly, I am thankful to be alive and be where I am today.

So what did you give thanks for this Thanksgivng?

Lose an activity, Gain another

Lose an activity, Gain another

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High school to some people seemed easy. You could be dedicated to so many groups and organizations and it wouldn’t be too much of a burden. If anything, it really kept you motivated and it was usually fun. I was in the band and I played multiple sports, so I was always busy with something. I even auditioned for the musical my senior year and got a back up part … but then I realized that High School Musical is only a movie, and I couldn’t play a sport and be in a musical at the same time.

What I am getting at is that sometimes you are unable to do something you once loved. Athletic training is my major, which means that is my first priority. This alone takes up a great deal of time, which means I have to let go of a few things I love. Playing trombone in the band was tons of fun, but it is something I can’t commit to right now. I’ve played soccer since I was able to run and now I can’t do it anymore simply because I don’t have the time.

I’m not the only one in this position. I have friends from other schools that are unable to play a sport because their bodies are just unable to take the demands of the sport, they didn’t make the team, or their majors just take up all of their free time. Some others aren’t able to be in Student Senate like they once were or they might just not have the heart for that activity they once had.

If you can’t do an activity you once loved, get involved in another. I don’t play multiple sports like I once did and I don’t play for a few hundred people at a halftime show, but I am doing things I never thought I’d even think I would once do. I have two jobs, one as a student ambassador and the other as a student blogger. This is something I never thought I would do, but I am so glad I am doing it.

You need to occupy all the free time you have because the more free time you tend to have, the more time you slack off (usually). The more activities or events you may have going on, the more organized your time will become, and this will help you from feeling useless and sorry for yourself, since you can’t do what you once did.

I still do miss playing trombone with a whole band and I miss playing soccer with friends I have grown up with, but college is the time to open up to new experiences. You have to let go of what you once had and find a new niche that is hidden inside of you somewhere. Everyone is different, so find whatever you know will suit you best.

Bottle School Blitzing

Bottle School Blitzing

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Ever since my freshman year at Mount Union, I have been fortunate to be a part of Raider Relief, an awesome student organization here on campus. We have an underlying mission statement: Student-driven humanitarianism, helping those in need with passion, love and good deeds. Basically our group recognizes the needs of people less fortunate than ourselves and acts upon those needs in a fashion that is timely, sympathetic and rewarding. Some of our past philanthropic projects have been Soles for Souls, Hugs for Haiti, Help to Others, March Makeover and most recently a Walk 2 Remember.

Not only do we strive to impact Mount Union’s local community of Alliance, Ohio, but we extend help to people all over the world by partnering with other charitable organizations. By teaming up with other charities we have declared our organization as a non-profitable group, where 100% of all of our earnings are donated to those in need.

This year our project is a Bottle School Blitz – a 10-day community and campus-wide fund-raising effort. The project will benefit Hug it Forward, a not-for-profit organization with an innovative approach to improving the educational infrastructure of developing nations. Hug It Forward focuses on building schools in Guatemala out of plastics bottles and non-biodegradable trash. The area of Guatemala has around a 25% illiteracy rate and many places don’t even have schools for children to learn in. These places are recognizable from the non-profit’s executive director, who used to do Peace Corps work in the area, and is able to recognize communities in dire need.

The Bottle School Blitz project consists of two phases. The first of which (the community blitz) will take place on Saturday, November 19. Teams of student volunteers will staff tables set up outside of more than a dozen high-traffic retail locations throughout Alliance, asking shoppers for donations to support the project’s cause. The second phase will be campus based. Empty plastic beverage bottles will be issued to hundreds of students before they head home for Thanksgiving break. Each student will be challenged to fill his or her bottle with spare change from home and return to campus with a coin-filled bottle.

The last, and ongoing phase, is an online donation site for those who cannot help with the community or campus initiative. If you would like to donate or share the donation site with anyone, please click this link! I sure hope that everyone reading this can help our project in any way possible. Share it with friends, family and online … a little help by a lot of people can go a long way. Help be the change we want to see in the world!

7 Simple Stress Busters

7 Simple Stress Busters

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Going from college to high school can seem like a big transition for some students.  The academic workload, increase of responsibility and just the aspect of being on your own for the first time in your life can come as a bit of a shock.  Many students are not prepared and putting all of the new aspects of college life together at one moment can lead to what all people have but dread: stress.

Stress is a common presence in the lives of many Americans, not just college students, and it can arise from a multitude of factors varying for each individual.  College students, however, do face high levels of stress, which can contribute to how successful a student is and their overall college experience. Learning to manage stress can be a key component to a successful college experience. The biggest problem with stress is how to deal with it.  What actions can be taken to relieve and prevent future stress? What do you do if you are stressed?  Well, here are seven simple tips to help relieve and prevent future stress.

1. Allow plenty of time. Do not get involved in too much or spread yourself too thin, as being too busy is a major source of stress.  Allot yourself enough time to complete every task that needs to be accomplished.  Decide which tasks are most important and need to be completed first.

2. Exercise. Exercising or just doing something active, whether it’s yoga, rock climbing or even karate, is a great stress buster.  Exercise improves blood flow to the brain and causes the release of chemicals called endorphins into the bloodstream, which provide feelings of happiness and an overall sense of wellbeing.

3. Get plenty of rest. Sleep is important in the management of stress meaning that getting enough sleep allows time for your mind to refocus, recharge and rebalance.  Sometimes getting in a daily nap or going to bed early one night may be all you need.

4. Talk with a friend or family member. If you are very stressed, talk to someone.  Find someone that you feel comfortable talking to and tell them what is on your mind.  Sometimes getting other peoples perspective or just getting things off your chest in general can make all the difference.

5. Get some quiet time. As in college life, alone time is hard to find. Personal space is rare for students; bathrooms and bedrooms are shared as well as the gym and even the library.  Finding time to yourself is difficult.  However, it is important to find a space where you can go and be alone to escape from the crazy world of college life.  Getting sufficient quiet time in which you can regain thoughts and just relax can work wonders on your stress levels.

6. Make room for fun. It is important to make time for activities that you enjoy doing – the activities that you do for you, for fun.  Everyone has something that they love doing and that makes them happy when doing it, whether its playing a sport, the guitar or even doing volunteer work.  Find something you love and use that as your go-to-activity when you feel stressed.

7. Keep things in perspective. College life may seem overwhelming, as there are many things that you want to do.  Although this is the case, there is only so much a person can handle and the reason why you are in college must not be, but often forgotten, is academics.  No matter what you choose to involve yourself in, the most important priority is always academics.  Nothing else will matter if you do not succeed academically.

Stress, like many things in life, is manageable and how you deal with stress holds much significance.  Following these seven simple tips will help de stress your life, allowing you to lead a more successful and fun college career.

Our field trip to NYC

Our field trip to NYC

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Last Wednesday, I took a trip with some of my fellow sport  business students to New York City for a long, but exciting day.

Aside from being able to take in all of the amazingness NYC has to offer, we were all able to learn from professionals about how to become successful.

If you are about to stop reading this because you’re not a sport business major — don’t. The advice and expertise gained on this trip can apply for any student, any major or anyone who just wants to hear some good tips.

After landing at LaGuardia Airport in New York, we hopped in some cabs and headed over to Citi Field, home of the New York Mets. We were greeted by Katie Mahon, the director of ticket sales. She took us on a tour around the ballpark where she explained some of the field’s high selling points. During our tour, we noticed that every TV in the park had “NY Mets welcome Mount Union students” on their screens. Talk about a warm welcome! Mahon wrapped up our tour and took us to one of the park’s suites where there was a beautiful breakfast waiting for us including fresh fruit, bagels, pastries and, of course, a lot of coffee.

It was in the suite that we met with Leigh Castrogine, the vice president of ticket sales and services. Castrogine and Mahon had some other employees from their departments there to give us advice on how they all got to be where they are today.

While Mount Union is always pounding the importance of internships and experience into our heads, it is always nice to hear it coming from professionals in the businesses we would like to get in. They could not stress enough that it was so important to fill our resumes with experience. Coming in at a close second, the Mets preach that networking is a huge factor to being successful. This goes along with the cliche; it is all about who you know.

Some other advice the Mets gave us was the importance of learning. They said to read books, talk to people and find out how other industries work. No matter what your career path, you can learn from other industries.

The speakers we heard from at Citi Field were all about passion. They said that once you lose your inner passion, you are on the wrong track. You have to work hard and prove yourself all while finding and following your passion. These are all very important tips on how to make yourself stand out.

“If you want something, no one is going to just give it to you,” said Castrogine. “You’ve got to ask for it.”

After our meeting with the Mets, we got in the car and went straight to Madison Square Garden(MSG) where we met with Adam Campbell, the director of inside sales and season subscriptions.

Campbell gave us an inside tour of MSG including the new renovations of the arena, the fabulous suites and, yes, the seats that are courtside.

It was no surprise that Campbell discussed the important of internships. He believes, however, that the purpose of an internship isn’t to find what you want to do, it is to eliminate what you don’t want to do.

He believes also that the willingness to learn complements a hard worker.

“Treat your internship as an X-month long internship,” said Campbell. “Always have your game-face on.”

Campbell talked next about what to look for in a job and in an employer.

“No matter what job you take, make sure you work for good people, people who care about you and your success.”

Campbell’s opinions on networking went hand in hand with the Mets’ views, however he contradicted one part.

“It is not about who you know,” Campbell stated. “It is about who knows you.”

When we were finished up at Madison Square Garden, we had about an hour to kill before we had to be at the National Hockey League (NHL) offices. This meant we had a short amount of time to wander around Times Square. We all went our separate ways to get some shopping and eating done. My group and I found a cute little pizza shop down the street from the heart of Times Square and we all picked up some delicious slices of pizza. We got it to go, however, because we wanted to make sure to eat our lunch on the bleachers in Times Square. Gotta get the whole NY experience, right?

The hour seemed to fly by and before we knew it we had to get to the NHL offices.

We were introduced to Nicole Allison from the Club Consulting and Services Department. She brought in Kelly Patterson, the manager of consumer products and retail, and Scott Jablonski, the director of club and financial reporting to help teach us more about the NHL.

They explained to us the differences of working for an actual team versus working for a whole league. In a job like this, they said, you have to look at it as any other business; it has the same functions as a business that has nothing to do with sports.

They taught us what kinds of fans the league has compared to other leagues and how they use these facts to be successful. This was all pretty cool because you never really realize or pay attention to the business side of sports. Especially in a league, you can’t pick a favorite team because you have to be fair to all and your job gets difficult because you can’t control the outcome of the games.

Of course, they all had advice for us on how to be successful. Jablonski was a big supporter in being a hard worker right from the get go. ”The biggest question you can ask yourself is, ‘What can you do on day one?’”

He also was a firm believer in the networking aspect.

“Everyone knows somebody,” Jablonski stated. “Everyone started out at the bottom and worked their way to the top.”

After the NHL offices, we had another hour or so to walk around Rockefeller Center and enjoy the scenery. That time went quickly once again and soon we were on the subway on our way to the Bronx to visit Yankee Stadium.

We were greeted nicely by Dan Rosenthal, the manager of inside sales for the Yankees. He took us on a great tour of the stadium. We were able to see the amazing suites, the awesome VIP areas and all of the history throughout the ballpark.

Rosenthal had nothing but great advice to give us. He, too, was a firm believer in networking.

“Build relationships and connections with people,” he said.

He knows that it is important to know your limits and what will make you successful.

“Put yourself in the best position to succeed,” Rosenthal said. “Go to a culture and place where you can grow your career.”

To have such an important role in such a great organization like the Yankees, Rosenthal has to know what it takes to land a job  like that. He told us the five things that he thinks makes a god worker.

First, you must have a tremendous work ethic. Second, you must be passionate about your craft. Next, you must be open to learning and be obsessed with wanting to get better. You must also have a positive attitude that is contagious. Lastly, you must be a leader by example — be someone who does something little that leads to something big.

Diary of a student about to register

Diary of a student about to register

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browser wars

What follows are my sms / typed entries as I woke up around 6:20 a.m. this morning to register for classes in the spring.

  • 6:22 a.m. – First alarm went off. Yes, I know it’s early, but I really don’t want to sleep through this morning. Timing is crucial. Still, five more minutes won’t kill me.
  • 6:39 a.m. – Sitting in my bed. Just. Sitting. Enthusiasm is pretty low and the warm bed behind me begs the question, Why haven’t I written an app to do this for me yet?
  • 6:44 a.m. – Nothing yet. I left the window open last night so I could just log in and start refreshing. However, I forgot that my 24′ widescreen monitor has the brightness level of about the surface of the sun. Who needs vision anyways?
  • 6:51 a.m. – OK, still not open. Interesting. I wonder how many other people got up this early to register. Did I even get in early to register last year? I can’t remember.
  • 6:54 a.m. – Nothing. Loaded up Facebook in one window and have Self Service in the other. How cool would it be to have the job of switching SS on? It’d be sweet, like candy.
  • 6:58 a.m. – And, we’re in.
  • 6:59 a.m. – And, we’re down. Getting this weird system error message as I try to advance to the next screen to confirm my schedule. I give my classmates about 30 seconds before they start freaking out.
  • 7:02 a.m. – Facebook is proving a hilarious source of entertainment as I sit here manually refreshing this error page. I have some witty friends.
  • 7:03 a.m. – From a techincal standpoint though, there’s probably not a whole lot they can do. If we don’t have the server power to withstand ~ 400 connections near simultaneously, we’re just going to have to suffer through this. The real problem is that Self Service dynamically renders each page, then serves it to the user (that way everyone sees a unique page even though we’re all on the same url). If they were pushing static pages, the server would be doing better.
  • 7:08 a.m. – Kinda ridiculous. Pen and paper are winning the battle against the Internet currently.
  • 7:12 a.m. – ANGEL, you’ve just been promoted. Somehow, you look better than our dear Self Service here. Enjoy the spotlight, because it’s only going to last until I log back in and you tell me Chrome isn’t a supported browser.
  • 7:18 a.m. – IT’S OPEN. For REAL this time.
  • 7:25 a.m. – Wrap-up: a little bit of a bumpy start and an uncessary wake time, and I’m all ready to go for spring. Ah Self Service how I love you, but I can only take you in small quantities at a time. How about we do this again next year? Great.

The Game Day Challenge: Attempting to Go Zero-Waste

The Game Day Challenge: Attempting to Go Zero-Waste

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One of the university groups I am involved with at Mount Union is the Sustainable Management Advisory Committee (SMAC). Part of my role within this group is to help assist in the decision making process of socially and environmentally sound opportunities to create a sustainable atmosphere for students. I have helped promote awareness for sustainability on campus by doing some marketing in the library and writing green facts in The Dynamo (our school’s weekly newspaper). One project this year is the Game Day Challenge, which will be held at our last home football game of the year against Baldwin-Wallace.

The Game Day Challenge is a groundbreaking event for sustainability on the campus of Mount Union. Mount Union Stadium will host the first ever near-zero waste event. Universities nation wide sign up for this event to measure and report recycling, composting, reuse, donation and trash disposal in pounds at sporting events. The EPA will recognize all Game Day Challenge participants in December of 2011 and present awards in the following five categories: waste generation, diversion rate, greenhouse gas reduction, recycling and organics reduction. Several of these categories are measured by taking the pounds of waste and dividing it by the total attendance, leaving a rate of per capita waste generation. The colleges and universities with the highest rates will be presented with awards. Basically, much of the trash generated at the game will no longer just go to a landfill.

At the game, there will be several stations set up where fans will be engaged an educated on where to properly dispose of concessions and refreshments. Recycling will still be taken to the schools municipality, the organics will be composted at our school’s Nature Center and the waste that cannot be handled will have to go to a landfill. One part that I am really excited about is how we will recycle our chip bags and candy bar wrappers. We will be putting different collection bins out for these and sending them to TerraCycle, where I interned this past summer, and they will be turned into eco-products. This is just another big step Mount Union is taking to become a more environmentally sound campus. Come out and cheer on a Purple Raider win, but also do your part to help a win for the environment!