Last summer I had the opportunity to study abroad in London with some of my fellow CLA classmates. Since spring has arrived, my nostalgia has hit an all time high. Because of this, I thought now would be a great time to share my favorite parts of the trip. While I have countless favorites, I’ll limit myself to three.

 

1. The AMAZING THEATER Scene

theater

When people ask, “what was your favorite part of London?” the theater is my first answer. It’s unlike anything I had previously experienced. I stood (quite excitedly I might add) through a performance of Julius Caesar in Shakespeare’s Globe and sat two feet away from Martin Freeman playing the malicious Richard III. I also saw the Curious Incident of the Dog in Nighttime, and I swear I’ve never seen anything so innovative and transcendent. If there’s one thing you should be doing in London (besides sitting in pubs and practicing your horrible British accent) it’s seeing plays.

2. Spending Hours in MUSEUMS

Darwin

From ancient worlds, to natural history, and modern art, London has got you covered. There are so many incredible museums in London that span a wide variety of subjects; it’s difficult to not spend your entire afternoon lost in their bowels. I loved that we could discuss a painting from 1553 in class and then hop on the Tube to go see it in person. This is what’s so great about London; it’s a perfect blend of old and new.

3. The PEOPLE

tourists

What is that clichéd quote again? The place is only as good as the people? Well, I think there’s some truth to this for a couple of reasons. First, it was a comfort to have people from a familiar setting. Second, I learned so much about myself through the people with me. In many ways, they were what made the experience a great one. I wouldn’t have loved London so much if I hadn’t been with other College of Liberal Arts students. After all, it’s more fun to explore a city with new found friends!

 

Overall, studying abroad in London has been the highlight of my college career so far. Because of this trip, I’ve added the International Degree and I’m packing my bags for France this summer. I cannot stress how beneficial study abroad has been to my education and personal growth. If you have the opportunity to study abroad, I highly recommend you take it. Currently, the College of Liberal Arts is accepting applications for the 2015 London trip. This year, one of the professors leading the trip will be Michelle Inderbitzin who teaches Inside-Out: Prison Exchange Program at Oregon State. Professor Inderbitzin, like study abroad, will expand your worldview immensely (believe me, I know from experience). Her London course will focus on the similarities and differences between the UK’s correctional system and the United States correctional system. So if red telephone booths and afternoon tea don’t interest you (seriously? who’s not excited about tea?) then spending time with one of the best professors at OSU should.

If you would like additional information about the trip to London this summer, follow this link.

 
Bon Voyage!

 

by McKenzie Ross

Jon Bosworthby Jon Bosworth

Fresh cut grass, vibrant blooming flowers, sun soaked students, and an indescribable buzz on campus; that’s Oregon State University in the spring. You see, there’s no better place to be in the spring than Corvallis, Oregon. I don’t know if it’s the anticipation of sun built up over several rainy months, the natural beauty offered by the Willamette Valley, or all of the events and activities associated with springtime, but it’s an amazing time of the year. Coupled with the beauty and warmth provided by the weather, comes a host of activities and events on and off campus to keep you busy throughout the term.

On campus there are a ton of events and festivals throughout the spring, beginning with Mom’s Weekend in early-May and culminating with commencement in mid-June. In addition to these events there is the ever-popular Dam Jam, where MUPC (the Memorial Union Programming Council) invites a well-known musical artist to play a huge concert in the quad! Check out the OSU Calendar for more events: http://calendar.oregonstate.edu

Outside of Oregon State is the place to fully enjoy the spring. Corvallis is the place to be if you enjoy the outdoors, there are numerous hiking, biking, and running trails as well as breathtaking destinations close to town. Some of my favorite places to hike are Bald Hill, which is a quick walk from campus, Chip Ross Park, and Mary’s Peak. Mary’s Peak is the highest point in the coastal range and offers breathtaking views of both the Willamette Valley and the coast after an enjoyable hike. If outdoor activities aren’t your thing, there are great restaurants, coffee shops, and clothing stores downtown that can be a part of your day after visiting the Corvallis Farmers’ Market. On Wednesday and Saturday mornings be sure to go down to 1st street and take advantage of fresh produce and flowers, unique art and much more at the Corvallis Farmers’ Market. No matter what your interest is, I guarantee that Corvallis’ springtime whether will be perfect for you!

Don’t get discouraged if the weather seems to be playing with you, it probably is. Just trust me, a morning that starts out like this,

gray daycan quickly turn to this:

bright day

Hannah WhitleyHannah Whitley

It is a common myth among undergraduate students that there is no opportunity for student research within the College of Liberal Arts. Unbeknownst to them, there are many exciting opportunities for CLA students to conduct research and to add to academic knowledge within their field!

This past year, I have had the incredible opportunity to conduct my own research project alongside Dr. Dwaine Plaza in the School of Public Policy. Since November of 2014, I have been researching levels of faculty diversity within West Coast universities. This past week I traveled with OSU’s Sociology department to present my findings in an undergraduate poster session at the Pacific Sociological Association’s annual meeting in Long Beach, California. At the conference, I was not only able to exhibit my findings, but was also given the opportunity to learn about graduate school, employment opportunities, and was able to network with fellow Sociologists.

Despite popular belief, the College of Liberal Arts has many ways for students to begin their own research. If you are interested in learning more about this fantastic opportunity, make sure to visit an OSU faculty member during their office hours to discuss their research and see if they have any suggestions for your research interests. In addition, Oregon State’s URSA (Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and the Arts) website has great resources for students interested in starting their own research.

Participating in undergraduate research is an exciting and unique opportunity, make sure to explore your options at OSU and make the most out of your time in Corvallis!

 

McKenzie Rossby McKenzie Ross

 

It’s that time yet again: multitudes of finals, widespread panic, and thoughts of dropping out. As we leave dead week behind, I thought it’d be a nice time to pull out some study-don’ts.

Let me break it down real slow:

 

1. Listening to music while you study.
“So I can’t listen to my dope jams and still get A’s?” Well, some jams are A-Okay. It’s not music in general that’s the problem; it’s the lyrics. So, press pause on Taylor Swift and play something like this or this instead. If you’re a minimalist, I suggest this website. For the true Oregonian I suggest this one.

2. “Studying” by re-reading.
Nope. Uh-uh. This isn’t a study method. Review method sure, but how much of that info are you actually retaining? This is called pseudo-studying, kids. It’s a great way to make yourself yawn and say, “yeah, yeah, I know all this” when you don’t. Not to mention, it’s a great way to consume valuable time. Instead, try rewriting your notes, creating a chapter outline, or making some flash cards; equally as time consuming, but definitely more efficient.

3. Forgetting Self-care.
If you’re sleepy, if your tum is rumbling, if you’ve been at it for hours, it becomes difficult to do your best. Self-care is a large component of overall study success, yet it’s probably the most overlooked. Mix this with the glorification of all-nighters and you’ve got students who appear “well-studied” but aren’t necessarily ready for their exams. My rule is to prepare for studying like you’re preparing for an adventure. You’ll need to be well rested, have a pack full of snacks (and water), along with the ability to discern when a break is needed.

Once you’ve crossed all these off your checklist, you’re ready to vanquish the dragon known as studying.

hobbit

Hannah Whitley Hannah Whitley

 

When I initially applied to OSU at the beginning of my senior year in high school, I had my whole college career mapped out: I was majoring in Agricultural Science with a minor in Communications. My ultimate goal was to become a voice for small agricultural businesses on the national level, either by serving as a representative on Capitol Hill or by corresponding with associations assisting production agriculturalists. However, after half a year of contemplation and major soul searching, my academic focus changed dramatically.

 
During the summer of 2013, I switched my major to Sociology. At that point, I wasn’t quite sure what my ultimate career goal was, but I knew that majoring in the College of Liberal Arts allowed me to take a diverse array of courses while simultaneously giving me the ability to have a hands-on, real world education.

 
As I enter my spring term in my second year at Oregon State, I have officially altered my major/minor/option combination six times. I have entertained many degrees, spanning everywhere from Theatre Arts to even Human Development and Family Science. Two years after my initial acceptance into OSU, however, I have officially settled on pursuing a B.S. in Sociology with an option in Crime and Justice, Anthropology with a Biocultural option, and a minor in Religious Studies.

 
Where I initially thought that I was one of the rare students who could not make up their mind on what to study, I soon found that I am not alone! Out of the 9 current Ambassadors for the College of Liberal Arts, we have all altered our major/minor/option combinations. On average, the CLA Ambassador team has each altered their course of study three times, either by adding to, modifying, or removing some type of their degree. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), we ambassadors fit right in with the majority of collegiate students in the U.S. According to the NCES, about 80% of students in America end up changing their major at least once. On average, these students change their major at least three times over the course of their college career!

 
The important thing to remember is that whether you keep the same major you declared while applying to OSU or if you decide to change your degree once or multiple times, there’s nothing wrong with that. One of the great things about post-secondary education is that students have the ability to choose what path of education they wish to pursue. It may take one (or six) times to customize your college education and determine your unique major/minor/option combination.

 
If you are thinking about altering your current path of education, make sure to discuss your options with an adviser in the College of Liberal Arts main office or with your major adviser. All appointment inquiries for advisers in the CLA main office can be made in Gilkey 207 or by calling (541) 737-0561. For a list of all major advisers, visit http://liberalarts.oregonstate.edu/finding-my-advisor.

Breanna Balleby Breanna Balleby

At the end of Week 9 of Winter 2015, the end of yet another term is near. Yet, the promise of a lively and beautiful term at Oregon State is just about to arrive – Spring 2015. I’m about to head into my fourth and final spring term at OSU and I couldn’t be looking forward to it more!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYes, each term at OSU has it’s own events and special qualities. Fall term is always buzzing with excitement and the feeling of change as the leaves begin to change color and the first-year students begin to adapt to their life on campus. Winter term usually brings it down a notch and everyone buckles down in the MU Lounge or their favorite study spot with a warm and cozy caffeinated drink. Of course, many of us secretly (or not so secretly) wish for the spontaneous gift of a snow day—although for those of us who experienced Snowpocalypse last year, I think we’ve had plenty of that for a while. In contrast, spring term comes right on the tail of winter term and Spring Break, promising many sunny days and end-of-the-year activities.

crowdFor me, spring term always seems to be packed. When registering for spring term I am always trying to make sure I am available as possible for all of the opportunities that are available in this busy and beautiful term. Campus-wide events such as the Mom’s & Family Weekend, Relay for Life, and DAM JAM bring a passionate and fiery element to the OSU community. Plus, of course, everyone can look forward to moving on to the next chapter at the end of the term. For some this might be feeling accomplished in successfully completing their first year, and for others it may be graduating from OSU in June.

 

The College of Liberal Arts has unique spring term activities that I look forward to each year in addition to the plethora of musical and theatrical performances, academic presentations, and guest lectures that we see each term in CLA. For example, the First Year Student Matriculation is such a great way to recognize the success of CLA’s first-year students. As a CLA Ambassador, I have attended or helped with this event almost every year and I love seeing how well the first-year students have transitioned and adjusted, especially in comparison to the CLA CONNECT Barbeque when they first arrived to campus. CLA celebrates the success and brilliance of our students through the CLA Scholarship Reception and the CLA Graduation Reception – the latter of which I look forward to participating in this year.

 

wickerIn short, with all of this positive and celebratory activity (plus the typically beautiful weather), how could one not love spring term? It certainly makes the top of my list of my favorite things at OSU…so much so that I’m somewhat sad to say Spring 2015 will be my last spring term as an OSU undergraduate in the College of Liberal Arts. No matter what, let’s make it a great one – here’s to Spring 2015!

Jenna Saperia Jenna Saperia

Wake up, go to class, go to another class, and another, repeat once more. Do homework for tomorrow because you know you won’t have time to do any other day’s homework. Watch Netflix for half an hour because you earned it. Go to work, come home and realize you forgot to eat today. Go to bed and wait for it all to happen again. Sound familiar? What if it doesn’t have to be that way? That’s right, you can try something new!

 
Clubs are a great way to do something more for a couple hours for one day a week. Recently, a friend of mine reminded me of a pact we had made last year to learn archery. We had a dream of one day riding on the backs of horses while shooting targets hung on tree branches. Of course we never got around to it because Netflix, but we finally decided to do it. And it was completely worth it! From 12-3 on Saturdays you have the chance to relieve some stress and shoot things. Who wouldn’t sign up?

 
It starts with carpooling, so you instantly make friends. Then you head to the middle of nowhere. After deciding that the day wasn’t going to turn into my own personal version of Hunger Games, I went with it. That was the best decision I had made since deciding to watch Brave, the fuel for this brilliant idea. After learning to ride a horse, the only obvious choice was to allow this guy, who was also a first time archery club attendee, drive us into to woods. Upon arrival, we were met by the coach and a wide array of bows, arrows, and other fancy equipment that I was taught how to use. The energy there was amazing! Regardless of the cold and the idea of homework that lingered in the back of my mind, I was thrilled to be there! The coach stuck by me and my partner in crime, knowing we needed to pass the safety test. She then proceeded to help us improve everything our nonexistent skills. By the end of it, we were hitting the bale of hay!!! It was magical!

 
Everyone deserves a few hours a week to dedicate to themselves. The homework will be there when you get back, and no matter what, you’ll always have it, so you might as well take some time to enjoy the college adventure and experience more than the library study rooms. Find a hobby you never thought you would enjoy, discover a skill you wouldn’t dream you would even have the power to possess, and most importantly, have fun with your friends. It doesn’t have to be archery, it can be a ballroom dancing, a .gif animation club, or even an academic club to help you with getting into a master’s program. The range of clubs are listed on Oregon State’s website*, just waiting for you to take a chance and try something new. Take a break from overloading while studying for midterms and put some layers on, because this weekend is going to be an adventurous one!

 

*Check out the list of clubs here:

http://sli.oregonstate.edu/seac/student-organization-support/find-organization

Melissa Salmeri Mel Salmeri

We are getting to that time of year when you should begin thinking about where you want to live next year. This is a big transition time, whether you are moving out of the dorms to your first place on your own, or if you’re looking for a change of venue. It is intimidating and by no means simple. On the other hand it seems scarier than it truly is, you just have to start. When I began house hunting for the first time last year I had no idea where to begin. I wish I had known about the resources Oregon State offers, and I want to make it easy for you to find those resources. Here is the link directly to the off-campus resources page. http://oregonstate.edu/uhds/off-campus. This would be a great starting point.

 
If the Oregon State resource page does not do it for you, the next step is to try Craigslist. You will find people looking to rent out  homes or find companies that rent out a number of locations. I will say, you will be making many phone calls. Most of the places listed will have the cost, location, number of bedrooms, and any extra amenities it is important for potential renters to know about, but you may find some that interest you that you need more information on. It is quick and easy to make that phone call and get the information you need. Eventually you may make trips to visit these places, often set up through the company or individual who listed the place. I will say I visited at least five or six places before I found the house I am currently living in. Another idea is to walk or drive around the areas you are looking to live in and look for names on the apartment or condo buildings. You can go online and find out more about each place that interests you. The internet will most likely be your best friend through this whole experience.

 
Take your time searching for the right place for you because for those of you who are first timers it’s a big jump from the dorms. If this is not your first time, my advice remains the same. I know I wouldn’t want to settle for a place I am not completely happy with. So it is a good idea to give yourself plenty of time so you are not rushing at the end to find a place. Consider the people you will be living with because now you are all paying bills and have shared space and responsibilities. You learn a lot about someone while living with them and in all honesty there is a chance that it’s not the best pairing but you can take it as a learning experience. On the other hand you may find the perfect place and people that you can keep living with for years. I just think it is important to know there are two ways it could go and to be mindful. This is the big leagues now, complete adult responsibility but it’s also a great growing opportunity. It is scary at times and stressful but it is a continuous learning experience. We are college students which means we are here to learn right? This is just one more thing college can teach you!

Holly Briggs Holly Briggs

Going to summer camp is a long-standing tradition. Camp is an opportunity for kids to gain social, outdoor, and community building skills. It also provides a chance for college-aged people to build important life and work place skills. As a camp counselor you can work with kids of all ages, in all walks of life, and at all types of camps. There are camps that focus on specific sports, only outdoor activities, some that take extended trips, and there are camps lasting the whole summer or ones that only last a day or two. One thing that all these different camps have in common is that they need to be staffed. I have been fortunate enough to work at day camps as a counselor, outdoor education camps as a teacher and cabin counselor and this past summer as a health aid treating illnesses and wounds sustained at camp. All of these positions have taught me a couple different things and they could teach you too.

I have learned first and foremost that I am valuable. Working with kids you must act as a role model and as a person who is there to build others confidence up. Guiding these children into their challenge zones is frightening but once they take the leap they will remember you, the one who gave them a safe place to be confident, for most of their lives. Another camp taught lesson is faking it till you make it, a skill that is irreplaceable. Camp has one of the tightest schedules that most people will ever work with and you must work and be positive 24hrs for 6 days a week, no matter how you actually feel. There are moments where you absolutely hate camp but when you see the kid who hadn’t made a friend all week talking to a new cabin mate, the pain in your throat is forgotten. Talking to these kids and helping them work through homesickness, lack of self worth, and a whole host of other issues will be the most rewarding process ever.

If you are interested in learning about yourself and how you work with others working at camp is a great start. If you are interested in gaining skills like public speaking and active listening working at camp is the perfect place. Consider your hopes and dreams for the future and the skills it may entail. Think about the skill set camp can provide and identify if it fits your dream. Working at a camp is a once in a lifetime. I encourage to you research some camps that interest you. Here are some links for camps that I know of, but if you’re looking for something else just Google it.

Jon Bosworth Jon Bosworth

As my last final ended on June 12, 2014, I knew that in two short days I would embark across the country on one of the scariest and exciting experiences in my life. Months earlier I secured an internship in Washington, D.C. with a U.S. Senator’s office and was anticipating this moment. When I finally landed in Washington, it hit me that I was alone in the foreign land inside the beltway. I arrived at my house, met all of my roommates, and got ready to go to work early Monday morning.

The first couple weeks were challenging, I was in a fast-paced and demanding environment surrounded by people who seemed like experts on everything. However I settled in and quickly gained an understanding of how the office was structured and the type of work I needed to complete. I gained an understanding of completing administrative tasks such as reading and sorting constituent emails, answering phones and communicating with constituents, giving Capitol tours, and seeking additional duties. Soon I began writing memorandums destined for the Senator, working on letters to constituents, and ended my internship doing press clips as well. I found that through perseverance, positivity, and hard work I could achieve anything.

While I might not have been the smartest or most-qualified person in the office, I knew I could make that up with hard work, professionalism, and positivity. The experience turned out to be the single greatest thing I’ve ever done in my life and my favorite co-curricular activity through Oregon State University. Not only was I living my dream in Washington, D.C. but also I was receiving credit for my work and research. I came back to Oregon State in the fall closer to graduating than when I left. The level of support and opportunity provided from Oregon State helped make my internship successful and created memories to last a lifetime.

When the nerves finally calmed down and I got to living my dream, things fell into place. No matter what you’re interested in as a college student, find a way to make your dream a reality and soon you’ll be able to write about it and unequivocally say that it was your favorite experiential learning opportunity.