Taking Over the Windy City

As I mentioned in my last post, I was given the opportunity to travel to Chicago and take over the Windy City! Along with seven other students involved with campus media, such as The Dynamo (newspaper), WRMU (radio station) and The Unonian (yearbook), I attended the 2012 National College Media Convention. We left on Halloween and it was … Read more

As I mentioned in my last post, I was given the opportunity to travel to Chicago and take over the Windy City! Along with seven other students involved with campus media, such as The Dynamo (newspaper), WRMU (radio station) and The Unonian (yearbook), I attended the 2012 National College Media Convention. We left on Halloween and it was well worth the eight-hour drive there and back.

We attended sessions throughout the day, which provided suggestions and ideas on how to improve our campus media, gain interest on campus and get creative with our stories, layouts and writing styles. My favorite session was called “Dazzle your Digital Resume,” which was presented by Cassie Morien, web editor for Boca Raton Magazine (see her website here). She was so energetic and gave awesome tips for creating a portfolio and resume that no employer could pass up. I left Chicago with a ton of inspiration and the motivation I needed to add that extra sparkle to my resume and incorporate my personality and creativity into my portfolio.

After attending sessions during the day, we still had a lot of time to explore Chicago! This was my second time in the city, but I was excited to revisit some of my favorite spots as well as discover new things about the city that I did not get the opportunity to see the first time there. While I could write a novel on my favorite things about Chicago, here are just a few that made me fall in love with the Windy City…

  1. Sky Deck Chicago – looking down on the city from the 103rd floor = amazing view! My favorite place to visit in Chicago.
  2. Deep dish pizza (Giordano’s is the BEST and well worth the long wait)
  3. Magnificent Mile – a full mile of the best shopping ever! Two-story Forever 21 and Victoria’s Secret – need I say more?
  4. Starbucks at every corner – we arrived just in time for Peppermint Mochas to arrive for the holiday season!
  5. Clean, beautiful city – the city looked so pretty, as Chicago is all ready for the holiday season! Christmas decorations and lights lit up the city on every street.

Exploring Chicago is definitely something to put on your bucket list! I will always have great memories of the Windy City.

The Countdown has Begun

The Countdown has Begun

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Two Sundays ago marked the start of my three-month countdown until studying abroad in Italy! I leave on January 7. I cannot believe in three short months I will be flying half way across the world, making Italy my new home for almost half a year. The thought is so exciting, yet terrifying at the same time.

I have always dreamed of traveling. One of my best friends, Olivia, and I would always talk about how one day we would live in Paris and own our own cafe. We even planned to call it “Alyssa Deann” after our middle names. I always imagined riding a vespa around Rome, like the Olsen twins in When in Rome, and tossing a coin in the Trevi Fountain, just like Hilary in the Lizzie McGuire Movie. Watching these movies growing up always made me more determined to one day turn those fairytale moments into reality. I am scared to death, but there is no going back now! I am so happy that I am pushing myself to be fearless. I think Taylor Swift would be proud (yes, I am probably T. Swift’s biggest fan)!

While the thought may be scary, if you are at all interested in studying abroad, I suggest that you talk to Dawn Adams at the Center for Global Education in van den Eynden Hall. Even if you are on the fence about traveling abroad, promise that you’ll find out more! You will never regret taking the time to look into such a wonderful opportunity.

As my countdown continues, I created a bucket list of the things that I want to make absolute sure I do while I am in Europe. I am so excited to see what I get to cross off the list!

It’s a New Year

It’s a New Year

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So it’s 2012 now! The beginning of a new year. The beginning of many other new things. A new semester with new classes and new professors. New events and campus activities. New experiences and opportunities that will come around. New relationships and connections that will be made.

A new year presents many chances for change and endless possibilities. It is, in a way, a chance to start over. Do something different. Make improvements on what was unfavorable from 2011. As 2012 begins, the chance is given to start fresh and better you. It’s the time to make changes in your life. This year is yours and you can choose to do anything with it. Make a goal to do better academically. Spend more time studying. Do volunteer work. Study abroad. Join a new club/organization on campus. Reach an athletic goal. 2012 is a blank canvas that needs filled and it needs some color. So what are you going to do this year?

Thankful November

Thankful November

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You may have noticed on your Facebook or Twitter news feed that many are taking part in “Thankful November.” It’s pretty self-explanatory … you just make a status/tweet about what you’re thankful for on each day in November. I think it’s really important in such a busy world to remember to stop and think about all the things that make you fortunate. Some of my friends have posted about their parents, friends, siblings, boyfriends, girlfriends, hardships, happiness, education and sorority … so many things!

I’m taking part in this challenge and sometimes it’s a little difficult to sit down and actually think about your life. I mean, there are so many things to be thankful for each day, little things and big things too, but it’s almost harder to narrow it down to just one. I’m going to leave you with a few examples of what myself and/or my friends have been thankful for in the past two weeks or so.

  • Today I’m thankful for my education. So many people in this country don’t finish high school, much less finish college or plan to go to graduate school. I’m thankful that my family is fortunate enough to be able to send me to Mount Union. I’m also thankful for the professors here that have pushed me to do my best in all my classes.
  • I’m thankful for the opportunities that have been given to me ♥ … I have the ability to travel and live in some of the most beautiful places, attend a variety of schools and experience a lifestyle not many will ever get the chance to. ♥
  • I’m thankful for all the troops fighting for our country’s safety.
  • Today, I’m thankful for the beautiful sunshine. It’s not often that we’re able to drive with the windows down well into November in Ohio, so I’m appreciating it today.
  • Today I’m thankful for sorority. Never have I met another more wonderful group of women who genuinely care for each other as these women do. Every time I walk into that house, I feel a warmth wash over me and I know that I’m home. I love knowing that around every turn on campus, I’ll have a friendly face to say hi to. These women accept everyone for who they are with no questions asked, no judgments made.
  • I’m thankful for my parents and all they have done/given up for me. I know everyday that I am number one in their lives and that means the world to me. I love you, mom and dad!

Get Involved!

Get Involved!

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College may seem a bit scary as it forces you to adjust to a new place (which is basically your home for the next four years), make new relationships with new people and once again find where you fit in.  You are no longer a big senior, at the top of the pyramid.  Once again, you are a freshman at the bottom of the food chain, which is a place many people do not like to be.

College is very different, however, in that aspect.  Other than the amount of credits you have and where you live, the status of your grade level does not mean all that much.  Unlike high school, seniors do not pick on the “little freshmen” or put them in lockers.  In college, everyone (for the most part) gets along.  Everyone has friends from each grade level, and the campus, especially Mount Union’s, is basically one big family.  Take me for example… I am a sophomore, yet I have many friends in each grade level whom I frequently spend time with.

But coming to a new campus and making friends all over again may seem nerve-racking and scary…I know it did for me.

The answer to this situation is simply the most important thing to do when going to college (especially as a freshmen) – get involved!  Getting involved is the best thing to do when starting out at a new school as it proves to be very beneficial to you.  Getting involved allows you to quickly meet many different types of people and make friends.  It presents you with the opportunity to better learn the campus and community and also allows you to better connect with faculty and staff members.  Getting involved keeps you busy and helps to erase boredom.  Additionally, joining different organizations and clubs can open many doors for you in the future.

Mount Union has many different organizations and clubs that you can get involved in on campus.  This ranges from joining a sorority or fraternity to participating in intramurals to joining academic clubs or service organizations.  I can guarantee you that there is at least one organization or club that exists on campus, but most likely more, that will draw your interest and you will find you fit into.  (Trust me, I have found many that I enjoy and fit into!) If there isn’t, believe it or not, you can start your own club!  Check out the list of the different organizations and clubs that currently exist at Mount Union.  See what you like and what you may be interested in joining.  Leave me a comment with any questions regarding the different organizations or clubs that spark your interest.

Just remember, it doesn’t matter what you do as long as you GET INVOLVED!

Remember what I said about opportunities?!

Remember what I said about opportunities?!

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So in most of my previous blog posts, I have mentioned that “Wow, Mount hooked me up with this internship,” or “Hey, I was on Fox 8 news all because of Mount,” and so on and so forth …

Well, those opportunities did not stop there!!!

This past weekend, Friday afternoon in fact, I checked my email and had a message from one of my favorite professors, Harry Paidas. He told me that they needed someone to do some sideline reporting for the homecoming football game… better yet, it was going to be broadcasted on SPORTS TIME OHIO (STO)!!!

If you have read my posts before, you know how I love sports, Cleveland sports, media, etc. This was right up my alley and SUCH A GREAT OPPORTUNITY!

I called him right away and told him I was more than willing.

So, after going on a nice little shopping spree to find the right outfit (of course), I prepared myself for my STO debut. (Ignoring the couple of times I made it on there over the summer through my Indians job… I made a fool of myself every time!)

Saturday morning started out like any home football game morning. I got some things ready for WRMU and worked the pregame festivities that WRMU puts on every game. As it became closer and closer to game time, I became more and more nervous.

Soon I was in the media van, getting my interview questions ready as well as learning all the quick and easy-to-learn rules for the day. I was given my STO microphone as well as my headset and was off to do my sideline reporting.

My first time on camera I was so nervous! I probably spoke faster than I ever have before, and I would be shocked if someone told me that he or she couldn’t tell I was shaking…

After the first quarter, I interviewed President Dr. Richard Giese, and at halftime I interviewed Anne Graffice (the director of alumni relations and university activities). After the third quarter I interviewed Mount Union’s wrestling coaches, and at the end of the game I interviewed the star of the game, Jasper Collins.

While it was beyond obvious that I was only a beginner, it was so much fun and so very exciting. I would definitely do it again.

I think about it and I would not have this opportunity anywhere else. I owe it all to my professors (especially Harry Paidas, for thinking of me for that opportunity) and the Office of Sports Information here at Mount. If I had never been involved at our TV studio here on campus, where I have conducted several interviews in the past (including one with Pierre Garcon, while he was here during the off season from the Colts), I would have never been presented with this opportunity.

Where did the time go?!?

Where did the time go?!?

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Well, it’s hard to believe that another year at Mount Union is over. After tomorrow, exams will be over, and the rest of campus will be finally heading home for the summer. If you read my last post, you will remember that I actually have a couple more days after exams until I get to head home for summer. As a Preview and Orientation guide, we have our last retreat this Wednesday until Friday, and then after that it’s back to Pittsburgh for me!

In this past year, I feel like I have accomplished a lot as a student and person. At the beginning of the semester, I received my open bid from Alpha Chi Omega, was initiated into the sorority and even became vice president of risk management. Sorority is something that has meant a lot to me this year and really helped me to grow as a person and excel as a student. It is certainly something that I encourage everyone to look into! This year has also been a big year for student involvement on my part. I knew that I wanted to get more involved this year, and I certainly accomplished that goal! I have been accepted into positions such as Preview and Orientation, Residence Life and Up til’ Dawn committee and was also initiated into Kappa Delta Pi, the education honor fraternity. All of these accomplishments have meant so much to me and are really going to be important parts of my college experiences.

If there were one piece of advice that I would give incoming freshman, it would be to GET INVOLVED! You meet so many different kinds of people and have amazing opportunities when you join different organizations and clubs. These organizations and the people you meet and work with while being involved become your family at Mount and really help you to enjoy every moment you spend here.

I feel like time goes by way too fast, and the past two years of my college career have really flown by. As I started packing up my room today, I was shocked that I was actually going to be leaving for the summer because I felt as If I was just unpacking to put pictures up and make me room feel “homey.” All I can say is … I will be sure to make the most of my last two years at Mount because you don’t have time to sit around and say “I should have done this, or I should have done that.” You just have to do it.

I hope everyone has a safe a great summer!

- Alexa

 

Hookie for a good cause

Hookie for a good cause

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So remember a few posts back I told you how I was working on that huge sponsorship proposal in one of my sport business classes? Well, it was (finally) due last week — how refreshing — but yesterday was the day of presenting. One of our professors in the Department of Human Performance and Sport Business somehow knows pretty much everyone in the sports world. He hooked us all up with different execs all over the surrounding area for our presentation. Some went to Cleveland (lucky), some went to Columbus, some headed to Youngstown and me and my group were able to head over to Pittsburgh.

I’ve been to Pittsburgh a couple times recently but never on a trip like this. Three of my classmates and I got in our professional attire, grabbed our “briefcases” and laptops and started off on a mini-road trip. The weather was pretty crappy here — you know, spring in OH — but once we hit PITT the sun almost automatically started shining. We timed our trip just perfectly because we arrived at PNC Park — home of the Pirates — right at 2 p.m., just in time for our meeting with the senior account executive with the Bucs.

PNC Park’s front offices reminded me of Progressive Field’s, but both are pretty unique to themselves. We went up to a conference room on the suite level of the ballpark and we had a great time talking about sports, talking about business and presenting our projects. Afterwards, he took us four out to the ballpark to show us all of the work he has done with getting sponsors. Now, I have never been inside of PNC Park, I’ve just looked at it from the outside. Let me tell you, it was gorgeous. What a great opportunity it was to go there!

After spending a couple of hours at the ballpark, we said our goodbyes (and got business cards) and went on our way home — but not before stopping and grabbing some sandwiches from Pittsburgh’s best Primanti Bros.

As I’ve mentioned before, Mount sure does a great job hooking us up with some fantastic opportunities. Yesterday was definitely one for the books.

-samantha

oh yea, and how ’bout them Indians? :)

Keep those opportunities comin!

Keep those opportunities comin!

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One word to sum up this last week –  Busy. However, it was busy in a good way.

Wednesday consisted of my Advanced Public Relations class taking a trip up to Cleveland to visit a PR Firm. I’ve told you in previous posts that the opportunities I have received through Mount Union have been awesome, right? Well, add this one to the list.

The firm was amazing. We met some PR professionals who expressed their passion for PR which only made me love it even more, and we learned so much about a real life PR career.

The next day was even crazier because it was Mount Union’s Schooler Lecture. Sure, sure, the word ‘lecture’ sounds boring, but, on the contrary, it was far from boring. Astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson came to campus to present this year’s lecture.  Look him up if you aren’t familiar. He was awesome.

I put on my reporter shoes and started the long evening off at the press conference on behalf of WRMU. It was a great experience because all sorts of media representatives were there from the Alliance Review, Canton Repository, etc. We all had the chance to talk with Tyson and ask him anything we wanted. We even got a picture with him!

After the press conference, we attended a fancy dinner in the Peterson Field House.  Trust me when I say fancy – our butter was shaped like flowers. Dr. Tyson answered some more questions and then we ventured to the gym where he was giving the lecture.

“10 Things You Should Know About The Universe” was an amazing speech. He narrowed all of the facts he knew down to the top 10 and relayed some of his knowledge to us. Sounds like it would be hard to understand, but it wasn’t. Dr. Tyson is hilarious and he made everything entertaining and simple(ish).

We put together some stories for WRMU and they went on-air all day Friday (you can check them out on our website!), and then I wrote a story for the front page of The Dynamo.

Overall, Thursday and Friday were great opportunities for me, and it just makes me love being a communication major even more :]

-samantha

How many days until Opening Day?

How many days until Opening Day?

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Second semester is almost over — can you believe it? I know I mentioned in one of my previous blogs how shocked I was that it was already spring break… pfft, spring break already feels like forever ago. Since then, I celebrated my 21st birthday, St. Patrick’s Day and a bunch of other fun stuff in between.

As if this beautiful spring weather isn’t getting me excited already for summer, imagine going down to Progressive Field and enjoying it up close and personal.I’ve mentioned to you before how I am a huge Indians fan and how I even interned with the organization last summer. Well, what I didn’t tell you is how long  I’ve been involved with the Tribe.A few years ago I started working at Southpark Mall at the Cleveland Indians Team Shop where I sold merchandise as well as single game tickets. Now, working in retail really wasn’t my thing, but I met some great people which really opened doors for me. So, as you know, I scored myself an awesome internship last summer and I didn’t want my experience to end there. My supervisor last summer told me to try to get in as many doors as possible down at Progressive — I had already worked in merchandise and creative services, what was next?I signed up to take a class here at Mount (the one I told you in my last blog about the sponsorship proposal) and one of our side projects is to be a part of the ticket sales team! We were able to skip a day of classes and head to downtown Cleveland to visit the ballpark and get some inside training on how to be a “Grade A” ticket salesperson. Now, during this whole semester, we’re working with the Tribe’s sales team and trying to sell tickets for this season!So, now I have stepped into three doors with the Indians… but guess what… it doesn’t stop there.Last fall I applied to be in the Fun Bunch — those awesome people who run around at games promoting the team. As my luck had it, I scored a position with the team and got to work at Snow Days (haven’t heard of it? google it!) over Christmas break and had a blast. We also had the opportunity to work several outside events including the mall tour the team went on. I loved it!Once the season starts (April 1), I will be able to start working games. Let’s just say this summer is going to be awesome. I actually went down today for day one of my training (that’s what I was talking about earlier — up close and personal!) The smell of spring just reminds me of baseball season and I cannot wait to spend my summer nights at the ballpark!-samantha