Friday, November 25, 2011

A @SMCAlpineSki Thanksgiving

I feel I should start this post with a disclaimer: This Thanksgiving and Ski Team Camp is atypical of most years.

That being said it's been a great 3 days! Since the dining hall closes for the Thanksgiving break, I had/got to go grocery shopping and prepare to cook for a few days. I invested in my usuals: ravioli, soup, hummus, crackers, cranberry juice, eggs, and bacon. When I was done with the shopping, I picked up my teammate Shannon (meet her in the video to the below) for dinner at Don Pedros, a new Mexican food restaurant in Winooski Circle near Tiny Thai. Shannon and I were very happy with the food there. (We are both particularly spoiled in terms of great Mexican food because we are from California.) I had a California burrito with carnitas, refried beans, guacamole and sour cream! Yum :)

The next day, we woke up for opening day at Stowe Mountain Resort. As I posted on Facebook, "Nothing like the first day back on snow to make a girl feel really out of shape." It was wonderful to get back out there with Head Coach Gus, Heidi, Nate, and Shannon. We spent the morning simply getting back on our feet. For me, it was 8 months off snow and it took me all morning to get comfortable again.

Thanksgiving day was no different! The gang headed up to Stowe for a more time on the Forerunner quad. Let me tell you, that is one LONG run. My legs were pretty beat from day one and Gus had us doing one ski drills, so it was... interesting? What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right? Sarcasm aside, one-skiing does do wonders for my balance and it makes two skis seem like a breeze. For Thanksgiving dinner, Heidi, Shannon, Gus, and I headed to Suzanne's B&B in Cambridge, VT. Gus is good friends with Dale and Suzanne and they were kind enough to include us in their family festivities! We really can't thank them enough for feeding us amazing turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, and all the other Thanksgiving staples.
Gus and Heidi at Stowe

Today we got lucky with some gorgeous weather. The sun was shining and temperatures were warm. So warm, in fact, that I skied in my fleece most the morning and the snow was pretty slushy. It was almost most like being back home in Tahoe. Gus had the group (Shannon, Heidi, Nate, Kevin, and I) doing one-ski and no poles skiing. I always feel ridiculous doing that especially on my right leg because I suddenly think that trying to swim with my arms is going to make it easier to turn. It doesn't Never has. Never will. Of course, when we got to put our other ski back on, I felt like a total champ. :)

I hope you all had a very happy Thanksgiving and an excellent start to the holiday season!

Have questions about SMC? Ask anonymously on Formspring! 


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Keeping Busy In College - Exams, Meetings, and My Movie Debut

I like to be busy. It makes me use my time well. I like having places to go and people to see. It certainly makes me appreciate my bed at the end of the day. This past week was on steroids. With only 3 weeks left in the semester, final projects are creeping up as well exams, final concerts, and end of semester meetings. The pre-Thanksgiving week is usually particularly busy.

Behold my planner (left). My week included Obscenity Day in my Media Law class, photos for Student Spotlight on the new SMC website (to be launched in late January), a trip to Williston, an arraignment, a Founder's Society meeting, a KnightChat (attend our last one of the semester on December 6th at 7:30 pm), and filming for the new SMC Admissions Housing video.

Yup, we look awesome!

 Due to the recent changes in the tour route--tour guides no longer show dorm rooms-- the Admissions office is creating a housing video that displays all the different housing available on campus. I was asked to be a host along with a freshman named Peyton (We will most certainly be receiving Oscar nominations). We did all of the filming on Friday, starting at 6:45 am outside the First-Year quad where the new Student Activities Center will be built. My only non-filming times were from 10 am to 12 pm when I was in class.  I am happy to say that the skills I learned in Acting for the Camera last semester came in handy.

The housing videos will feature first-year dorms, suites, and townhouses so that prospective students and parents can get a feel for residential life through the entire college experience. I really enjoyed the opportunity to work on this video with Peyton and the SMC Admissions crew. Later that night, I joined the AcaBellas to sing the National Anthem at the Men's Basketball game in Ross Sports Center. The Acabellas are working  on a lot of new music for our semester-end concert on December 9th. Did I tell you I got the solo for King of Anything by Sara Bareilles? I am so excited about it :D! We are also learning Don't Speak by No Doubt and will hopefully learn a plethora of Christmas Carols!

As for my weekend, it was relatively relaxing. I have been writing a paper for Media Law as well as a profile for the New Yorker (The class, not the actual magazine... yet.). I have had lots of sleep which is obviously important. Now I am back the the grind until Thanksgiving break starts on Tuesday afternoon! Woot Woot! Have questions about SMC? Ask me here. Talk to you all soon!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

My First FOIA Request and Arraignment

 As part of my Media Law and Ethics in the Digital Age course, we are asked to write a paper on our experience attending a meeting that is protected under the Sunshine Act (every portion of every meeting of an agency shall be open to public observation) and make 2 FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) requests. I am currently through the 2 FOIA requests:

  1. Retrieve information on a home in Williston.
  2. Attend an arraignment and retrieve the public files.
So, yesterday I went to the Williston Town Hall Clerk's office to get the housing information. Turns out you need to go to the assessor's office for that info. Did I mention that while the Town Clerk is there until 5 pm, the Assessor's office is only open from 9 am - 1 pm? Needless to say, that trip was a bust.

Today, I attended an arraignment with Liz and Pete. I should say we attended 4 or 5 arraignments. Arraignments are really quick and there were 5 in about 20 minutes. There were no serious crimes; the worst offender sold alcohol to minors. The most interesting thing I witnessed was the Waiver of Counsel form that two defendants signed. This means that they waived their right to representation and chose to represent themselves; Neither of them had previous experience with law. After the arraignment, I walked over the the Court Clerk desk to retrieve the public file on one of the cases. I chose a case of an young girl charged with underage drinking. It was a small file and in all honesty, I have yet to look through it.

If you don't know what an arraignment is, enjoy this clip from Law and Order to the right. While VT court is more mellow, you can get the basic idea. Arraignment is the first time the defendant hears their official charges and enters a plea of "guilty" or "not guilty."

After court, I attended Meteorology before trekking back to Williston to get the housing information. Thank goodness the second time around was a breeze. I walked up to the Assessor's office, a very small room with a computer and a lot of filing cabinets. My address was 29 Read Rd, a home sold Oct. 9, 2011 for $178,000. According to the Assessor's Office, that was about $24,000 less than it was assessed for. It has 5 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms plus and 11' x 28' garage. The real world scenario for this exercise? Someday you will want to place an offer on a home. Get the information on similar houses in the area to get an idea of what they are selling for. Then, you won't overbid! Isn't college practical?

Now, I need to go do more practical college things like get some sleep. Tomorrow is a Student-Blogger/Founder's Society extravaganza.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

You Are What You Tweet (Especially to Employers)

Sitting in the library considering the pros and cons of studying for tomorrow’s exam, you decide a more pressing matter is updating your Facebook status. Maybe you are the music-lyrics type or maybe bitch-and-moan is more your style, but either way, it’s more important than your exam. If you are one of the over 145 million people on Twitter, nothing is better than a tweet about your recent move to the library with the #collegeproblems hashtag. Oh, and you can now use that hashtag on Google+, so you share your predicament with over 10 million people there.
            What you may not be considering in this seemingly harmless rampage through the Internet is the effect it could have on your job search. Beware that a search engine’s usefulness can fuel your academic research just as well as it can fuel a potential employer’s research on you. In fact, while I went through the process of finding an intern to fill my position for the Fall semester, I used social media to get a better look at the applicants. Taking into account the type of company I was working at – no visible tattoos at the office – I had to eliminate two candidates before scheduling interviews. I also eliminated a candidate based on scantily clad photos posted to a public Twitter feed.
            A recent article on cited a study by Reepler and Lab42, which talked to 300 random individuals involved in the hiring process of a company. “A massive 91% of the employers polled use social networking sites to screen prospective employees,” the article states. 69% of the people surveyed say they rejected a candidate due to things they saw on a social media platform.
            Don’t worry. All hope for your future career in the uptight, Gucci-wearing, office setting is not lost. 68% of people in the Reepler and Lab42 study say they have hired someone because of what they saw about them on social media sites. When asked why, they said the following: 39% thought it “gave a positive impression of their personality and organizational fit,” and 33% believed the profiles showed good communication skills.
Now is the time to start covering your bases. Don’t have a Linkedin account? Sign up. It is the social network for professionals and allows you to display your resume, recommendations and updates all in one location. Think your Facebook profile photo is giving off the college-party-kid vibe? Pick a simple headshot to replace it and then make your profile visible to friends only. Wondering whether the tweet you wrote in the 300’s field on Saturday is sending the right message? Start using your Twitter to boost your image by sharing articles of interest, communicating with people within your industry, and using proper grammar. Remember, you are what you tweet, so make yourself look good!
 An Op-Ed I recently submitted to the SMC Defender.

Friday, November 4, 2011

@SMCvtAlumni Career Symposium 2011

Today was a day for considering the future. I'm sure that isn't nearly as nerve-wracking for me as it may be for some seniors, but it was intimidating nonetheless. Here is the schedule of events:
Diane Darling

Diane Darling – Networking
4:15 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.
Life After St. Mike’s and Internship Information
5:15 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Industry Panels
6:00 p.m. - 6:45 p.m.
6:50 p.m. - 7:35 p.m.
Networking for All Attendees
7:35p.m. - 8:15 p.m.

Diane Darling is an expert on networking. Her presentation was a great start to a networking event because she talked us through "How to Walk Through a Networking Event." My three big take aways:
  1. My hand shake is a little aggressive.
  2. Don't be afraid to approach 'big wigs.'
  3. Using "Tell me about..." is a great way to start a conversation with a new person. People love to talk about themselves.
After her presentation, current SMC students doing internships and alumni of the school talked to us about their experiences and life after SMC. Because I have done an internship, none of the intern experiences were particularly new to me. However, I found the Alumni stories interesting especially those who had internships turn into full-time positions.

The part I was particularly interested in was the panel discussion for Sales and Marketing. (Other panels included Science and Engineering, Not for Profit, and Human Resources amongst others.) Sales and Marketing featured 3 female SMC alumni: Kara Cleaver, CEO of Influency Group in Texas, Carol Bullock, the VP of Sales with Dolce Hotels and Resorts, and Deborah Ryan, the Marketing Director of Harvard Business School Executive Education. They all shared their stories about life in the world of marketing and answered my questions about what I should know going into an interview, particularly if it is for an online marketing position. Their answers in a nutshell?
  1. Know the platforms and how to use them.
  2. Know how to read and understand analytics, as well as their correlation to sales.
I am sad to say that I missed the networking session after the panels. My head was pounding and I had to get some Advil. (Not before getting some business cards, however.) All I can say is THANK YOU. Thank you to the Alumni Board, the Office of Career Development, the Internship Office, and the Alumni Office. The event went off fantastically. 

Questions about Career and Internship resources here? Get in touch: or


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Class Registration #4 - Goals and a Plan

  1. Take Global Communications. This is my last MJD requirement aside from Senior Seminar.
  2. Have no classes on Friday. All of the NCAA races take place on Friday and Saturday.
  3. Take interesting classes that allow me to train with the ski team everyday. I still have to take 16 credits to be on track to graduate, so I need to pick 3 interesting class.
The Plan:
  1. Wake up at 6:45 am and make coffee.
  2. Open KnightVision and make sure my classes are in queue. (Check out my post: How to Use KnightVision)
  3. Register for classes promptly at 7 am.  (Tip: When you register, give yourself about 10 seconds before clicking 'Register.' It would be annoying to hit register and see 'Registration is not open.')
  4. Go back to bed for an hour in a state of bliss because I don't have any classes on Monday or Friday! Here is the schedule I want:

No class!


1:10 - 2:40 pm - MJD-205: Global Communications w/ Professor Jon Hyde

In this course we will be mapping-out world communication and the cross-cultural outlines of our so-called "global village." We will take a macro-look at the rise of international communication systems and the development of this thing we call "global culture." We will examine a series of case studies which reflect the ways in which media techniques and technologies-computers, satellites, the news, language, digital imaging, fiber optics-impact national and cultural development among different populations around the world. Finally, we will take a critical look at the future-the future of global mass audiences; issues of inter-and-cross cultural media ethics, privacy, global policy, and intersections between science and science fiction.

2:50 - 4:10 pm - GS-230: Gender Issues in Society

Explores the significance and intelligibility of gender by examining, from an interdisciplinary and global perspective, how gender differentiation is experienced, understood, expressed, valued, and lived out in cultures.

6:30 - 9:20 pm - MJD-210: Photojournalism w/ Adjunct Professor from Champlain College

This digital-based photography course introduces students to the skills, theory and ethics of newspaper, magazine and Web-based photojournalism. Through in-class discussions and hands-on demonstrations, students learn manual camera techniques, and image editing using Photoshop software. Analyses of historical and contemporary photographic work help students apply techniques and theory to create storytelling photographs suitable for publication.


6 - 9 pm - AR-205: Drawing 1: Portraits w/ Professor M. Brandt 

Students will develop skills in mark making, formal visual principles, and abstract thought through assignments that survey different approaches to Drawing.


Repeat Tuesday without Photojournalism


No class!

That's the nice part of college. A flexibility to pick your schedule. You can choose all morning classes or no classes before 10 am. While there is no guarantee in registration, I've been very lucky so far and I hope that keeps up! Now, I am off to Media and American Politics.
Questions for me? Ask anonymously on Formspring!


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