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A Very Appley Weekend!

16 Oct

Everything about this weekend just screamed “Apples!!!”

Friday I went apple picking (in the pouring rain!) with Speech and Hearing Club. We had a ton of fun and the Orchard actually donated 2 1/2 bushels of apples to us! Despite getting soaked, it was fun to get off campus and out into the orchard with people I’m so used to seeing in an academic setting, but rarely spend time with outside of the classroom. We chatted on the car ride over and laughed at each other as we attempted to juggle apples, tried to figure out how to use the apple picking devices (you can see them in the pictures), and almost slipped on the soaking wet grass.

 

 

 

 

 

We had such a great time! Not even the rain could put a damper on our fun! (That's me in the green rain jacket.)

On Saturday, Speech and Hearing Club had a table at Fall Fest, an event put on by UVM that showcased many of UVM clubs and organizations, while providing food venders and activities for families and alumni to enjoy while on campus for the weekend. We sold baked goods, the many apples we picked on Friday, and puzzle pieces that students, families, or whoever could purchase to support Autism Speaks, an Autism charity we donate money to annually. Their names would then be written on the puzzle pieces and displayed in Rowell Hall, the home of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences. We also sold out of our Speech and Hearing Club t-shirts at this event, which was really awesome! They were a huge hit this year!

Today, Sunday, a couple of friends and I drove to Waterbury to admire the foliage (what’s left of it anyways!-how quickly that came and went!) and to go to the Cold Hollow Cider Mill! We sampled lots of cider, jellies and jams and saw a cider making demonstration! And of course I left with several cider donuts, most of which are already gone! Soooo delicious!

 
 

Falafel Thursday!

29 Sep

Seriously, my favorite day of the week!

(my apologies for the poor photo quality)

 
 

Deaf Awareness Week

26 Sep

These past few weeks I keep asking myself “Why, why, why didn’t I take American Sign Language sooner?!” If I can recommend anything at UVM, it is the sign language program. It is a common interest among many students in my Communication Sciences major, but people take ASL for a billion different reasons. Most of us went through high school taking Spanish, French, maybe Latin or German, and while I am definitely not saying that those languages are not phenomenal, American Sign Language is a completely different experience. Isn’t that what college is all about? New experiences!! ASL fulfills foreign language requirements, which is awesome!! And since many of the academic colleges and majors at UVM require 2 semesters of a foreign language, why not try your hand at ASL? (terrible joke, I know. I just couldn’t resist.) Right now I’m in ASL 1 and my plan is to continue on to ASL 2 next semester. Sadly, after graduation, who knows what my future will bring as far as continuing to learn ASL. That’s why you have to jump right into things as soon as you can and not wait until your senior year! Anyways, only 4 weeks into the course and I’m already loving it. Unlike Spanish in high school, I can’t make flash cards to remember vocabulary or practice listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills. I can only practice 1. interpreting and 2. signing. We learn many new signs every class period and then use them in activities and games to commit them to memory, since we can’t really take notes or write them down. Also, the ASL professors are Deaf, which makes the learning experiences so much more interesting! Some days it can be challenging, especially if you have a question, but I definitely think it emerges us in the culture that much more and forces us to use the ASL we know and step out of our comfort zone for a little while.

As a requirement of the class, I attended several events during Deaf Awareness Week, which was last week. On Tuesday, I went to game night. We played Telephone, a modified version of Rock, Paper, Scissors that was actually Hunter, Tiger, Photographer, The Elephant Game and a game involving facial expressions, a crucial feature of ASL. On Saturday, I attended “The Fly Guy,” which was a One Man Show. It was phenomenal. My friend, who is a total language buff, with no experience in ASL, came with me and was absolutely amazed. The Fly Guy shared stories from his childhood about his father and their hunting and fishing adventures. He also told stories about his schooling and various other stories from his life, all bursting with humor. Most of the show was acted out with mime and gestures, so even those who don’t know ASL could understand and follow along, similar to watching a silent movie. Whenever he used ASL, a voice interpreter was used. It was an incredible experience. I really hope he performs again before I graduate!!

http://www.uvm.edu/~ameslan/?Page=deafawarenessweek.html

^^Check it out! =)

 
 

I’m a Ju…Senior?!

18 Sep

Senior year?! It seems like just yesterday I was taking campus tours, receiving more college brochures than my mailbox could hold, and filling out what seemed like an endless amount of applications. And now here I am, three years of my undergraduate career behind me and what I know will be the quickest year yet, senior year, already three weeks under way!

These first three weeks have been a whirlwind of events. The semester began with a false start, when our first day was cancelled due to the torrential downpours Burlington received as a result of Hurricane Irene. Our campus and our city was lucky in comparison to many parts of Vermont and the East, in that we didn’t have much for damage. With the exception of a few downed trees and power outages, we came out of the storm relatively unharmed. The UVM community has stepped forward in many ways to provide clean up efforts, food and monetary donations, blood drives, and other support systems to help those affected by the storm. It’s a great feeling to be a part of a university that does not hesitate to help in any way that it can to provide for its students, their families and our communities. Once the rain stopped and classes began, I feel as though I’ve been in perpetual motion. I’m taking 18 credits this semester and although it’s challenging, they’re all courses that really interest me. Two of them require that I do observations in the Eleanor Luse Center, which is our on-campus Speech and Hearing Clinic. I observe clients working with graduate students and their supervising clinicians, who are licensed Speech and Language Pathologists or Audiologists (some of them are my professors!). So far I have done 3 speech observations and I have my first audiological observation tomorrow. It’s really exciting to see material I’ve been learning in the classroom for the past few years being applied in the career I wish to pursue, Speech and Language Pathology.

Aside from my classes, I’ve been active in my clubs and organizations as well. This year, as a returning tour guide, I’ve played a big role in helping to train new tour guides, which so far has been a lot of fun! I was also appointed Tour Tier Captain, so I facilitate training sessions and work towards making our tour tier as efficient as it can be. Speech and Hearing Club had our first meeting last week and we had a great turn out! Apples for Autism, our yearly tradition of going apple picking, caramelizing the apples and then selling them to raise money for Autism is on the agenda! I love apple-picking so I’m really looking forward to that. Mortar Board, the senior honor society that I am now a member of, has been in full swing. It has only been three weeks and I’m already looking forward to working with this amazing group of students for the rest of the year. Everyone is so dedicated and reliable. We have come up with some creative ways to fundraise and get our name across campus so I’m really excited to participate in those events.

Well it’s Sunday night, which means it’s time to switch out of weekend mode and make preparations for another busy week. Those preparations might have to wait a few more minutes because this sunset is just too beautiful to miss…

 

 

Did I mention this is the view from my room?

 
 

It’s Still Light Out!

30 Mar

Well, Vermont may be a little behind on the whole “Spring season” thing, with the occasional snowfalls and below freezing weather, but if there is one thing I love about this time of year, it’s the daylight hours! It no longer gets dark at four in the afternoon!! Tuesdays and Thursdays I am in class until 5:15 and Mondays I have class until 7:05. A few weeks ago, when I would leave class and walk outside into the dark, it automatically felt like bed-time. But now, just two days away from April, we actually have some sun into the early evening hours! YES!

Even though the grass may not be green yet and the trees aren’t quite blossoming, UVM is alive with Spring. I’ve seen many games of basketball out on the courts on Athletic Campus, some frisbee tossing on Central Campus and more students sitting outside on benches all over campus. It’s great to see people outside enjoying the sunshine, even if it’s still a bit frigid.

I got some really exciting news last week. I was accepted into UVM’s chapter of Mortar Board, a national honor society based on Scholarship, Leadership and Service for college seniors. Unfortunately I wasn’t in my room when a current Mortar Board student came to my door with a carnation and a lit candle to welcome me into the honor society, but my roommate sure enjoyed telling me about it later! The first orientation meeting is tonight. I’m looking forward to going and seeing if I recognize any faces of other people who are being inducted this year.

A few days ago I witnessed something that made me really happy to be part of the UVM community. I was standing in the Davis Center (our student center) waiting for Brennan’s (a popular on-campus dining location) to open its doors for lunch. When they opened at 11 I walked in to find a staff meeting going on. The man in charge had everyone gathered around and was reading people’s names off of cards, followed by words of gratitude and nice things to say about each and every person. He had the whole bunch laughing and smiling. It was so great to see all of the people who make Brennan’s the delicious food hub that it is being truly appreciated. Many of the visitors I have on my tours are worried that they will just be a number at UVM, with its undergraduate student population at just over 10,000. This recent experience of mine reiterates the point that no one goes unnoticed at UVM, whether you are a student, faculty or staff.

Only five more weeks of classes! Let the snow melt, the sun shine, and the good times roll!

 
 

Beginning a New Semester

21 Jan

Just this past Tuesday, winter break came to a close and we kicked off a new semester here at UVM.

Thinking back to mid-December, smack dab in the middle of finals week, I looked forward to the month break I had ahead of me filled with relaxation, catching up with friends, and being able to do nothing! Like most other people, I made a to-do list, had really great intentions of completing it and of course, at the conclusion of my vacation, I realized I had only checked a few things off my list. However, doing a whole lot of nothing kept me well rested and ready to start a new semester.

I arrived back to campus this past Monday and it hasn’t stopped snowing since! The first week of classes is always difficult getting back in the routine: waking up to an alarm, bundling up in my down jacket, boots, scarves, gloves and hats and trudging through the snow to class while trying to find all your new classes and memorize your new schedule. The first few days are pretty rough, but before you know it you’re right back in the swing of things, as though you never left. I always look forward to seeing all my friends and hearing about their vacation stories as well as meeting all my new professors. And I’m pretty sure this is going to be a great semester. I’m already enjoying my line up of classes: Biopsychology, Linguistic Anthropology, Cognition and Learning, Research Methods of Psychology II (statistics), and Health Care Ethics. As a double major (Psychology and Communication Sciences and Disorders) I have two advisers, and I have them both as professors this semester! Having an advisor as a professor is a great way for him/her to see how you perform in a classroom setting as well as interacting with you outside the classroom to discuss future plans, careers, interests, etc. And when it comes time for graduate school applications or job interviews, she/he will be a great resource to ask for a recommendation letter.

I anticipate this semester will be a busy one. Besides the 16 credits I’m taking, I have two on-campus jobs and a couple of clubs. I fulfill my work study at the front desk of my residential complex. My tour guide job will be very demanding this semester as well with all the Admitted Student Visit days, weekly tours, and other events. The athletic schedule is packed as well which means lots of Pep-banding for me. And lastly, my Speech and Hearing Science club will begin having regular bi-weekly meetings. Always something!

One week down, fourteen crazy, fun, stressful, lively, exciting weeks to go!

 
 

The Home Stretch

30 Nov

Only one more week of classes? What!?

Everyone is back on campus after our much needed Thanksgiving break! This year we got a whole week off! Of course we had to sacrifice a few holidays throughout the semester such as Columbus Day and Veteran’s Day, but it was definitely nice to drive home and be able to stay for an entire week. Just like most other college students, I packed up my backpack with lots of work I planned on accomplishing over the week off and came back to campus with the same back pack, untouched the entire week. So maybe I didn’t get any papers written or reading done but I was able spend a lot of quality time with friends and family, eating delicious home cooked meals and passing the days watching movies and crafting some home-made Christmas presents.

The piece of the semester that remains after Thanksgiving break is always a whirlwind. Less than two weeks of classes, a week of reading days and final exams and suddenly it’s time to pack for a relaxing month at home of holidays, more sleeping, eating, family and friend get-togethers, and of course, ringing in the new year! Thanksgiving break gives students just enough time to relax, refresh, and build the energy to sprint through the last bit of the semester.

My plan for the next three weeks? Use my time wisely!! I have numerous projects, presentations and essays due, studying to prepare for finals, gifts to make and shop for, and in my opinion, the most important…my birthday next week!! No definite plans for the special day yet, but hopefully there is a nice dinner with friends in my future!

That about sums it up for now! Like the Little Engine that Could said: "I think I can, I think I can…"

 
 

I haven’t forgotten you

09 Nov

Let me just start by saying how sorry I am for the lack of blogging this past month! My laptop was being silly and not letting me sign onto the blogging site. It never occured to me that it could be my computer and not my log-in information. I like to think that my macbook is incapable of error. haha

Needless to say, I’m sitting in the computer lab in Dewey Hall writing this. My speech and hearing science class begins in a few minutes upstairs so I don’t really have time to get into too much detail on recent UVM events and what not, but I can definitely write another post within the next few days, now that I know I am able to log into my blog account from a different computer!

More to come soon…for real this time!

 
 

I forgot how much I love fall in Vermont

08 Oct

I’m finally starting to accept the fact that summer is truly over. I can no longer escape homework, exams, getting up early, and of course the cooler weather. Last week was my first opportunity to “relax” this semester. No exams, no projects. Of course that isn’t entirely true, because in college there is always something you should be doing. I woke up on Monday with a throbbing head cold: sore throat, headache, runny nose, the works. To make matters worse, it rained all week. No exaggeration. The entire UVM campus was a sea of umbrellas, decorative rain boots, and brightly colored rain jackets. And then there were the silly people like me: sliding around in soggy flip flops, drenched from head to toe without the aid of a rain coat or umbrella. I knew my academic stress free week was too good to be true. When Friday rolled around and the rain wasn’t letting up, I decided that after living in Vermont for almost 17 years, it was time to buy a rain coat. As soon as I walked out of the store, rain coat in bag and 75 less dollars in my pocket, the rain stopped. Just. My. Luck.

Saturday I attended the Soul Food Social, a dinner event hosted by the Black Student Union. The food was amaaaaazing! Everything was home cooked and absolutely delicious. The UVM dance team and step team performed as well as a few vocalists. It was a nice opportunity to mingle and an excellent excuse for getting dressed up.

My delicious plate of soul food.

Yesterday was the first hockey game of the season. I joined my fellow Pep Band members, “peppers,” to cheer on our beloved Catamounts as they faced New Brunswick. As the end of the game neared and New Brunswick was up 3-0, fans started pouring out of the rink assuming that there was no chance of recovery. They were wrong, sort of! UVM scored 2 goals within the last few minutes of the game, one of them being within the last 5 seconds! New Brunswick took the victory, but it was definitely an exciting end to the game. And I think, a great way to start the season.

This week has been another one high on the stress-o-meter. Three exams in one week! In preparation for my Social Psychology exam I read an article my professor published a few years ago. It’s really interesting that many of the professors here at UVM not only teach, but they also conduct research. And professors are always looking for students interested in assisting with a study or even participating in them, often for monetary compensation or class credit.

Anyways, another week down and another eventful weekend in order. I hope the weather stays nice so I can enjoy all the beautiful fall landscapes! More details to come!

 
 

Kickin’ It Off

28 Sep

Welcome to my new blog!! I suppose I don’t even need the word “new,” seeing as this is my first blog…EVER! Of course I jumped on the myspace bandwagon in middle school and, like every other college student, I’m a facebook addict, but I’ve never had a true blog before. I feel like I have a million things to say, but I guess I should start my introducing myself:

Hi! I’m Kate. I’m a junior in the College of Arts and Science at UVM, double majoring in Psychology and Communication Sciences (Speech & Hearing Science). I’m from Southwestern Vermont. I’m a proud member of the UVM Pep Band. (I play flute.) We attend all of the men’s home hockey and basketball games. I’m a new member of the Speech and Hearing Club. Also, I’m an Advocat, a cute little name meaning Admissions Tourguide. That’s right, if you come to visit UVM, you might just have me leading you around campus! Well, that’s after I get my wings anyways. Right now I’m in the training process, but in a few weeks I will have my “wings” and will be free to fly solo on tours!

Now that you know a little about me, let me tell you about the purpose of this blog. This blog is designed for anyone with an interest in UVM to learn more about the university through a current student. Sure the brochures and websites are excellent, but that just shows the shell of UVM. These blogs are a way for real UVM students to express what real college life is like. Here you will find information about classes and academics, residential life, extracurricular activies, and many other aspects of social life.

Okay, I guess that’s enough in terms of introductions. I promise the next blog will be more action packed. And maybe, if I become technologically savvy, there will even be some pictures!

Until next time…Kate.