Sunday, April 29, 2012

MLK Talent Show 2012

Good morning!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend! I certainly did :)

Every year, I participate in the MLK  Annual Talent Show. This year, I was in two acts: a solo and a group act. As per usual, I picked my song about 2 days before the show, but I had been rehearsing for a while so I was confident in it. Until this year, all my MLK performances have gone off fabulously. I suppose that this year I should have guessed there would be a snafu.

Essentially, I got on stage and there was cheering. I asked how everyone's night was going and people screamed. Unfortunately, the music was already playing. I didn't realize how behind I was. I tried to fix it. It didn't work, so about part way through the first chorus I asked for a re-do. Lucky for me, SMC is a very supportive community and they were all for a restart. They all knew something was wrong. The moral of this story: SMC rocks because they want everyone to do well and they don't want to watch someone go down in flames.

My second act was the closing act of the show. I may have mentioned in an earlier post that my friend, Eric, messaged me a while back and said the group needed a "Fergie/Nicki Minaj" type. I'm not sure I filled the role, but I did really have a great time performing with the group. The act followed the story line of Intro, Last P-Day Night, Rap Battle, Last P-Day Night. It was silly. If you watch the video, you'll see me giggling hysterically several times through the act.

So enjoy the show! This week is the last week of classes at St. Mike's! I can't believe the year is nearly over! Next up, cross-country road trip!


Monday, April 23, 2012

All About Accepted Student Day

This weekend was certainly Founders-filled including Accepted Student Day and a CVC bus tour which introduces College Counselors to the SMC campus. Below is a slideshow of photos I took at the ASD event.

Being a Founder's member means getting to me students before they get to St. Mike's. It means that you can be a resource to students who are in the position you were in only a few years, maybe even months, ago. For me, it's rewarding. I went through much of the college search process alone, so I like to be helpful to those who might be in a similar situation.

The reason for the photos is a) my photojournalism class and b) it is just fun to do. I like to take photos and I figure my photos can fulfill multiple purposes.

The purpose in this post is to tell you about what goes on at Accepted Student Days. First, you arrive and register. There is time to mill around and chat with Admissions counselors and current students. Then, we send families out on tours with some of our amazing tour guides.

When everyone returns from their tours, they come into the Ross Sports Center for speeches from current students to get a feel for their experiences. These are followed by the Academic Fair and lunch. Families are split into two groups, one for lunch and one for the fair, which are later switched. The fair is an opportunity for families to meet with professors from the various departments as well as leaders from residential life, Fire and Rescue, the Student Association, and the Wilderness program.

Lastly, parents and students part ways for a few hours. There are two panels and one is strictly for accepted students and current students. It is a Q and A session without parents and admissions staff which allows students to ask us questions about life at SMC which they may have been to embarrassed to ask with the "adult" presence.

For those who can make the trip, I think Accepted Student Days are hugely beneficial especially if students are torn about their decision. You can get a sense of the school and who will be in your future class.

That's my two cents and a few photos. Hope you are having a good Monday!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

@SMCFounders End-of-the-Year Banquet

Hey Everyone!

Wanted to give you a quick video blog update! I don't know why Youtube chose this terrible freeze frame. What an unattractive face, haha! Oh well. Life goes on :) Enjoy the video and photos!

xo Gabbi

Monday, April 16, 2012

All About Budget Allocations with the @SMCvt_SA

You may have heard that if SMC doesn't have your club, then you can create it. It's true. For example, my friend wanted an all-female aCapella group and so she created one my freshman year. My sophomore year, the group applied for "club status," which entailed a presentation to the Student Association at one of their weekly meetings and, of course, an impromptu concert. Thus, the Acabellas were born.

Now, every year following the groups elevation to a club, we have to report to budget allocation meetings. This essentially means that three of us (This year, it was Mallory, Becky, and I! Go Alto 2s) met with the Secretary of Finance, the Vice President, and a few other folks I assume to be on the committee.

Some groups just "wing it" as far as the budget meeting. There isn't a real plan. My friend Kerri attended the meeting for the Philosophy Club and they were asking for the same budget as last year, therefore she didn't really have to propose anything.

The 'Bellas, however, were proposing a budget increase of $250. Being me, I needed a plan... an outline... anything that made me feel a little more prepared for a meeting I had never been to and determined how much money the group would have next year. Here was the proposal:

Acabellas Budget Proposal 2012-2013
$300 – Food for Concerts
            - Each semester, we do an end-of-the-semester concert. This would allow us to order/ make $150 dollars worth of food for each of those concerts

$350 – T-shirts/CDs
            - We’d like to create customized CDs and t-shirts to sell to SMC and the surrounding community. Following our first Church St performance earlier this semester, we had requests to purchase CDs so we feel there is a market for Acabellas “swag.”

$100 – Music Arrangements
            - Our primary purpose is singing and we will want to purchase arrangements from outside sources.

Total: $750

Additional Funds:

Travel to “Acapella Paloozas”
            - During the year, we hope to request additional funds to cover travel fees. We were invited to other colleges this year to perform but we unable make the dates work. However, we hope to make this work next year. 

The meeting ended up being no more than 5 minutes. As a well-represented club on campus, we had little trouble getting our budget increased. We will be getting our official number on Tuesday, but for now I am confident that we will have funds to have food at our concerts and custom CDs! :-D

My advice: Don't be freaked out by budget allocations. SMC is small enough that you'll probably know a few people sitting at the table and they are all very friendly! 

Have a great monday!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter Weekend - A Trip to Plymouth Rock

Plymouth Rock
Most Americans know that the pilgrims arrived on the Mayflower and hit Plymouth Rock. What you may not know is that Plymouth Rock is, in fact, a small little rock with "1620" inscribed on it. It is sheltered be a colossal memorial.

As you may have deduced, I spent my weekend in Plymouth, Massachusetts, which sits on the coast about 40 minutes outside Boston. My friend, Kate, live there and after 3 years of friendship I finally met her family. (Most of my friends have met my family and many of them met freshman year.)

For Easter Break, we get a 4-day weekend, so Kate and I trekked down on Thursday afternoon.
On our first day there, we walked along the water, where I saw the Mayflower 2 (the replica of the Mayflower) as well as Plymouth Rock. It is pretty interesting to actually see the place after learning about the pilgrims my entire life. For Kate, this was the destination of a million field trips. I suppose it's comparable to my education on Ellis Island or the gold rush. You learn a lot about the history around you. Anyways, this was a photo Kate took of me, so I could text it to my mom. (My mom and I both love traveling and history.)

Look, the Easter Bunny came! (Thanks, Mrs. McGrath!)
To be honest, Kate and I spent most the weekend relaxing and hanging out with her family. We saw the Hunger Games (now I am dying to read the books!) and played WAY to much XBox3 Kinect. I'm not really a video game person and I never had them growing up, but that system is mad cool. You don't need any controllers, just hands. I am slightly embarrassed to admit that my upper body is slightly sore from tennis, golf, bowling, track and field, darts, and beach volleyball. It is the truth though.

We ended the weekend with a trip to Boston to meet up with Sarah and Fleur. We did a little shopping and then headed to Flatbread where Kate's brother works. I've never been to a Flatbread, but it was AWESOME! So delicious. We had this sweet potato pizza with goat cheese, cranberries, and caramelized onions that was to die for! We called it our "last supper," since we were leaving to head back to cafeteria food.

Now I am back at SMC with a big week ahead including interviewing, Global Comm-ing, and practicing my speech for the Accepted Student Day this weekend and next weekend. I hope to see a ton of Class of 2016-ers there! Have a great week!


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

My First Time: Doc Jacobs Field

I'm sort of embarrassed to admit this, but here it goes.

I'm Gabbi and until today I have never set foot on the Doc Jacobs Field. I've just never had to. Of course, it is never a dull day at St. Mike's and it was a day for something new.

I have admittedly been a little relaxed in terms of getting ahead on assignments recently. I've been doing a lot of procrastination. I really and truly believe it is a result of the end of ski season. I just don't know what to do with my time and yet I feel busier than ever.

Moving on...

This week, I had put off/sort of forgotten about my photojournalism assignment entitled "Enterprise." The idea behind the assignments is that sometimes a publication will need you (the photographer) to go out and find a photo to fill space on a page. The photo should be visually interesting and timely. My professor says that these photos sometimes happen in a frenzy.

I'm not sure a frenzy is the right way to describe my shooting style today, but it was last minute. I woke up this morning and checked the athletics schedule. I got really lucky and found that there was a baseball and softball game happening in the afternoon, which I could shoot between my class ending at 4:20 pm and photojournalism at 6:30 pm. That gave me 2 hours to shoot and edit my photos.

SMC baseball takes on St. Anselm's on April 3, 2012
On such a small campus, it is hard to believe there are places I haven't been. Doc Jacobs Field, however, has really held no interest to me in the recent past. Don't get me wrong. I am a HUGE supporter of SMC Athletics and no one is prouder to be a Purple Knight. I just haven't made it back there for a game before. Now, I can say that I have.

I've entitled this first image, "Photographer-proof Fence." It isn't your typical baseball photo, but I do like that you get both teams, the ref and a convenient framing from the fence. In an ideal world, I could be on the field or have a big fancy zoom lens, but alas, I do not. You can check out lenses from the library, but I did not think about that in the 2 hours I had to do the assignment.
SMC softball huddles up before their game against UMass Lowell.

My second photo is a more quiet moment which I'll call "More than a Number." I think a lot of times we are given bibs or jerseys and we see score boards with home runs or times. As athletes, we are more than just numbers. I like this moment before the game. You know where they are from the sign, you know they are a team, and you can see the softball in a player's hand on the right. I also like that I shot it vertically. I don't often do that, but I think it creates cool photos.

I took a lot more photos. Probably close to 80 of them. I like to have a lot of options and when in doubt I just shoot. Who knows? I might get really lucky with a random shot. Better safe than sorry. Now I am off to bed. Today has been exhausting. Have questions? Ask me here.


Sunday, April 1, 2012

I'm Here And I'm Ready to Sing - An Acabella's Tradition

For those who don't know, I like to sing. I sing in the car. I sing in the shower (just ask my suitemates). I sing on the treadmill. College is really the first time I have been able to "pursue" singing as an activity. I did choir in grade school, but since then it has been the occasional talent show performance and not much more. That is why I am so grateful to be an Acabella. These girls mean everything to me and my SMC experience wouldn't be the same without them.

On Friday evening, the Acabellas went to perform at the Arbors, an assisted living facility in Shelburne. Part of our group mission is to do community service and support causes important to us. This particular performance was organized by a fellow Alto 2, Mallory, and her friend, Susie, who is an RA and works at the facility.

L to R: Peppers, Taylor, Krystin, and Kendall
Earlier in the day, our new t-shirts had come in the mail! Yay! On the front is our logo, a singer with crazy hair filled with music notes. On the back, it states "I'm here and I'm ready to sing."

Let me give you the back story on that saying. The 'Bellas, as we call ourselves, are a tight knit group. We share in each other's sorrows and triumphs. We really do support each other. Of course, this also means we are a rather chatty bunch and sometimes that takes away from our rehearsal time.

Therefore, we created a system to try and find our focus before rehearsals. We sit in a circle and each person gets to say one thing that is bothering them or good news they want to share and they end the 'Bella says, "I'm here and I'm ready to sing." This means that despite whatever is going on in our lives, rehearsal is a time to small and focus on singing. I am personally in love with the shirts. I think they turned out great and they are super comfy. There was a general consensus in our Facebook group that we didn't want to take them off. That's part of the reason I love this group: Everyone loves being a 'Bella. It's part of who we are.

L to R: Emily, Me, and Devan
I also love running into 'Bellas outside of rehearsal. This weekend, I hung out with Emily and Devan, two freshman in the group. I like hanging out with them because a) they make me feel tall and b) they are absolutely hysterical. Emily recently became a tour guide for Saint Mike's, so some of the Class of 2016 will get to meet her at our Accepted Student Days in April. It's just more proof that here at St. Mike's you are more than a student-athlete. I like to think I am a singing-skiing-leading-laughing-blogging-student-athlete. It's quite the title, I know. It is too bad it doesn't fit on my business cards. :-P

I just wanted to give you all a little insight into the group. It's such a huge part of my experience and I hope that all the female shower-singers that are looking at SMC will try out for 'Bellas!


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