Wednesday, September 29, 2010

So much to blog about, so little time.

Everyday I have thought of some great topic to blog about and then never find the time at night to ever post it. I can't believe it is Wednesday already and week 4 for that matter. Time flies. This past weekend was super busy one. I conducted PLC interviews, we had several UIB programs, as well as the Newport Mansions Food and Wine Festival with SES.

PLC 2010 Spring Banquet
Friday I had the opportunity to interview lots of great freshman for the President's Leadership Council. Johnson and Wales continues to raise the quality of students they are admitting so pretty much everyone we interviewed was fantastic and qualified. That made interviews very difficult because we had to cut some great students from the council. We have about 40 new additions to the council this year and I am very excited about the council this year. It is easy to get bogged down by the culture of students here at Johnson and Wales. There is such a dramatic difference in students here, there is one group where JWU is there dream school and they are here to succeed and another group of students who have wealthy families and that can buy them into a college degree even if they forgot to take their SAT's. It is refreshing to get together with a group of students who are elite and all here for the right reason and that is PLC. Honestly PLC saved me from this school. I hated it here until I got involved with the council. We interviewed so many students who were just so passionate about their major whether it was culinary, baking and pastry, or international travel and tourism, even criminal justice. I enjoyed hearing what their most favorite thing about JWU so far and what they thought there was still room for improvements on. So refreshing.

4 out of 7 UIB Eboard Members
I love my UIB family. Our E-board this year is incredible, we all get along. I enjoy all of the time I put into it. This weekend a few of us actually got a chance to hang out outside of UIB events and went to Waterfire together. We found a spot on the grassy hill overlooking the water basin at Waterplace, it was so fun to just hang out with people and relax outside. We had awesome weather this weekend, perfect 74 degrees ( my absolute favorite).

Marble House
 Newport, RI
Sunday Rae and I volunteered at the Newport Mansions Food and Wine Festival with the Special Events Society. Coincidently, Sharon, our friend we made at the Life is Good Festival was in charge of the kitchen pavilion we were scheduled to work at. What a great contact we made, I guess that's a huge part of SES: networking. It was so fun, we assisted in wine pouring and serving samples. I cannot stress how great volunteering for events is. I get experience, behind the scenes access, free admissions to events I would probably never get to go to, and we get free food and swag. Love it.

So on top of all of my extracurricular activities, I still have school work. School has not been my number one focus lately and it is starting to catch up with me. I am not doing A quality work for my classes and I need to step it up. I am so glad I got some time to squeeze in a blog post, but there is probably some homework I could be working on since we don't have a tour today and I'm sitting in the cubicle knocking out my Hulu playlist. Until next time...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Time for a change.

I feel that lately I have been bombarded with lessons on leadership in all different shapes and sizes. I have experienced leadership lessons as well as sat in on training sessions and just sitting in my leadership class. Not complaining, it's a good thing. Student Activities brought in a motivational speaker, Michael Miller, to conduct training sessions for clubs and orgs on campus. I happened to be in three of those training sessions. 1 for clubs and orgs in general, another for student government and another for UIB e-board, and our advisor arranged for the UIB president and myself to have lunch with him too. He is so great! He's very loud and very italian (meaning he talks with his hands). It was a bit overwhelming at first, but I grew to love it. It has gotten me to want to take all of the organizations I am involved with and go above and beyond with them. Why not? It is time to push up my sleeves and start a revolution with both SGA and UIB, but in 2 completely different ways.

It is time to stop complaining about SGA and start to try and fix SGA. The problem is simple: the leadership can't and will not work together, the members are unclear on the purpose of a student government, and the leadership is kind of talking the talk but not walking the walk therefore not proving any credibility in themselves or giving the members a reason to do what is expected. The time has come to turn around JWU SGA and make it one of the most prestigious roles on campus like it is at real colleges. No more running unopposed for positions and no more appointing people for positions because no one wants to run for it. 

UIB's situation is different. We will always do what we are supposed to do. There will be programs on campus whether or not it is done correctly, different story. It is very easy for committee chairs to plan, book, and execute their events. The hard part is effectively engaging their committee members and making them feel like they had a part in making that program happen. This year we are going to give more responsibility to the general board in hopes of keeping them engaged and committed to us. This year we will also fix the problem of students not knowing what UIB is. There is no excuse for the student body to not know what a campus programming board is. It's partly the students' fault for not paying attention, but it is mainly our fault for not effectively getting the word out. 

I am very excited for the potential this year has to offer. At this point, everything said is worthless. I want to see action. Talk is talk. We have realistic goals to be met this year. Now all we need is enough people to be on board and make all of it happen.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Life is good, BUSY, but good.

I can already tell my second year of college is going to fly by. It's already Friday!? This past week was pretty routine, but it started off with Rae, Mattie, and I volunteering at the Life is good. Festival in Canton, MA. It was such a great experience. It was a rough start but when we finally got from the volunteer parking lot to the actual festival grounds and after our first assignment at bocce ball, it was so much fun. Have you ever played bocce ball before? Enough said. Mattie and I took the first opportunity to move and went over to the watermelon seed spitting contest. It was quite entertaining to watch parents watch their kids try and spit the seeds and then the parents dying to try after them. The entire festival was to benefit the Life is good foundation for kids. There were so many families there as well as a great artist line up for the 3 stages. After spending a few hours watching people spit seeds, it was time to move on. While attempting to take a break and enjoy the festival, Mattie and I stumbled across the kid's drink bar and it was crazy. It was in the middle of a shift transition and busy as can be. Mattie and I stepped right in to help. We spent basically the remainder of our volunteering at the kid's bar making fresh squeezed lemonades and frozen fruit drinks. After the kid's bar shut down we scarfed down pulled pork sandwiches, sweet potatoe fries, and sweet tea before heading over to help at the real bar. Funny story on Rae's blog  about us trying to sell beer. We only served a few beers, realized we were in the way and went and enjoyed the Jason Mraz concert. So awesome! 12 hours working on our feet, rainy weather, and being short staffed still equaled a great day. It's funny how when you work a music festival, although there is a great musical line up, you're not terribly disappointed about missing the concert because you're working the event. There were a couple more acts I would have loved to see like Guster, Ok Go!, Brett Dennan, and Corrine Bailey Rae but I missed them because I was working and I was not heartbroken. Now if I miss Jason, I probably would have been more upset.

Monday was our PLC meet and greet. Met some awesome freshmen. Applications are due today and interviews are next Friday! Tuesday I had my first student government meeting with the house of reps. Not bad, it's gonna be a good year in SGA I think, hopefully there will be some changes. Being a representative, we deal with appropriations for other clubs and orgs.We had another successful UIB meeting Wednesday night. Thursday we had our first College Republican meeting. We were expecting more people, we had 6, but that's better than before. Rae and I have big plans to turn JWU CR's around, hopefully it'll be a good year with them as well, considering it being an election year. This morning I took care of some UIB business and fulfilled some of my office hours before heading to the admissions office for work. Phew....I'm exhausted. 

Until next time...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Week 1 Madness.

Week 1 of the school year was a success! I have a very neat but tight schedule for my weeks. I have work in the morning, class in the afternoon, and some sort of meeting in the evening. I don't get a lot of time in my apartment so I am glad we moved in a few days early to give us time to enjoy our new home. Unfortunately because I am never there, we have failed to decorate. The living room doesn't have a single thing on the white walls and frankly, I am getting to the point where I don't even care anymore. I am really only living there for 9 months, I can deal with the bland-ness and decorate a more permanent place when I decide where that is. Moving in was rough, move out will be worse if we buy more stuff.

This past Wednesday was our first UIB (University Involvement Board) meeting. We had about 80 new people come out of the 350ish who signed up for more info from the Student Activities Fair. Pretty good. Being vice-president is a lot of work, no wonder why I get a stipend for it. It's going to be a great learning experience, now that I've thought about it, I have never had a real leadership position before. Friday night, UIB sponsored the laser tag event for Welcome Week. It was a lot of fun but we were there from 7pm-1:30am working. Not much working, more like talking to new students about UIB. Saturday night, both CAT and SGA sponsored the casino night Welcome Week event which was also a lot of fun. I was the cashier and a blackjack dealer, pretty legit. Going to campus events is an obligation of mine since I am involved with so many different organizations. I was thinking of them as burdens on my schedule but after this weekend I have decided to have a better attitude about it. Even though the hours were long, I got to hang out with my friends and have fun. I expect other students to go to my events so I need to set a good example by attending campus events too. I cannot handle when people moan and complain about being bored and not having anything to do. I am always busy and always entertained, they can be too. There are so many opportunities offered on campus and the community, take them up, you're paying for it. Rant over.

Until next time...


Monday, September 6, 2010

And So It Begins...

I'm back!! Providence hasn't changed a bit, but I am excited to be back and getting back into the swing of things. I have a busy busy year ahead of me. Today is my first day back at work in the admissions office, thankfully I there are no tours booked today, so I can get some hours in and take care of some business from my computer. 

I'm realizing how it is easier to blog about nothing (like this summer) than lots of things. There are so many things I could tell you about these past few days, but nothing of real importance. Basically it was a consistent pattern of unloading the car, loading the elevator, unloading the elevator, moving things into the apartment/room, then repeat. After moving our on things in, we also volunteered to help freshmen and their families move in. It was hard work, but it is all worth it when I think about how appreciative the families were that we could pretty much get their things up to the room in one trip. Made the madness of move in a little bit easier to handle. 

Rae and I moved into our Cove apartment Thursday and had the place to ourselves until yesterday. Mattie and Jillian moved in and got all settled yesterday, some reason it took them no time and it took Rae and I DAYS to get out things settled. The apartment looks great, I am really excited about living in it this year. The bedrooms are a tad small but we have lots of room everywhere else. Mattie's mom, Chele, helped her move her stuff in yesterday and feng shuied the living room for us, and it looks so much better than how we had it before. P.S. We are in the market for a futon if any of you are getting rid of one, let us know. 

Tonight is the Student Activities Fair out on Gaebe Commons. There will be swarms of booths for all of the different clubs and organizations on campus and swarms of freshmen to talk to about UIB. Recruitment is one of my responsibilities as Vice-President so this is my night to get some freshmen to join. This is probably the first time I have ever had a real objective to accomplish in an elected position. I have to get better at focusing and tackling my objectives I want to accomplish this year. This is something I want to work really hard with this year so I can leave JWU and UIB thinking I did something to make a difference in. You can't ever really feel proud about anything without putting in time and hard work. 

I have to get a new camera this year, I have been in denial about dropping it in the Walmart parking lot last spring, but it is time to just suck it and buy a new one. Once I get one I will definitely post some pictures up of the apartment. For now I you can see a picture of the exterior. It's so good to be back in the mini-city, until next time...

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