Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Best of luck Class of 2015 ... it’s been a wild ride!


It’s May, and that end of the year feeling is overtaking me as I walk by students sun-bathing on the Quad and try to find a cubby in the overpopulated construction site that is the library. As each day passes and I cross off another completed assignment on my agenda, the reality of graduating is still not sinking in.

Every day I wake up I go through the same routine: open my graduation countdown app on my phone. I feel a mixture of anxiety and excitement as the days, hours, minutes, and seconds until Saturday, May 9, continue to tick on by. And still, even with the countdown, picking up my cap and gown, and leaving my last college class…I cannot fathom the realization that this is all coming to an end.

It is so cliché to say four years have come and gone, but really, they have. I remember as if it were yesterday so nervously moving into Lycoming Hall freshman year. I remember actually getting lost trying to find my classes. And crying because I could not picture having to go through seven more semesters of exams, all of those dreaded group projects, and the hell week that is finals.

But I would honestly do it all over again if I could. Seniors… we will never again have the chance to live with all of our best friends and experience our crazy times side by side. None of my roommates are moving out or graduating, just me. So it’s been extra emotional as I start to see my room slowly emptying and theirs staying the same.

I don’t think I appreciated the small town atmosphere of Bloomsburg as much as I will when I move. Being able to go out on a run by myself late at night is a luxury we should be thankful for. And not having to worry about walking home alone after night class is something we all take for granted. This is such a great area with so much to offer.

But what I will miss the most about BU is the people. From my professors, my advisor, my internship supervisor, my friends, my classmates…. I’m truly in denial that we won’t be together anymore. As graduation approaches, I’ve really discovered whom I have been able to impact and those who have impacted me over the years. I’ve received so many small gestures of thanks and goodbyes from those who care about me, which of course, immediately turned me into a puddle of tears.

We remember kindness. And never forget meanness. I can definitely say that I have come across more people on the “kind” spectrum here. Being a good person will serve us all in the long run, both on a professional and personal level.

Reflecting back to high school graduation, this feels so different. I was so carefree and excited to leave high school and get away to college, meet new people, and have a fresh start. But now, this period of my life is so overwhelming. Every five seconds I feel like someone asks me, “So what are your plans after graduation?” as I try not to roll my eyes and scream I DON’T KNOW.

I’m trying my best to stay calm and have fun in this awkward stage by slowing down and enjoying these last few weeks of not knowing what’s to come.

Seniors - we really need to stop trying to put it all together, or we will never feel truly satisfied. After sitting down with my advisor one last time, I expressed to her my panic about not having a job lined up. She simply told me, “Take your time."

We shouldn’t settle for any kind of position that doesn’t make us happy or isn’t suited for us.

Because of the amazing internship I experienced during this final semester, I realized one thing about the job hunt: I should not EVER settle for anything that doesn’t make me as excited and happy as I was going to my internship.

Seniors, we need to search for a position and company we truly love to work for, because if you love what you do, you’ll be thinking about it all the time and constantly striving to be your best.

— Rachael Scicchitano, senior communication studies major #HuskyLife #ProfessionalU

Monday, April 27, 2015

Don’t stress the test



Classes can be stressful, especially at the end of a semester. Great timing for finals, huh?

As a sophomore now I feel better knowing more through experience how to conquer the stress of tests … well that’s what I think. When it comes down to it I do the same thing every time. I procrastinate.

Procrastination is the worst enemy to any student. We all do it, because we know that once we start studying there are two options … we understand the concept and pass the test or we FREAK OUT because we have NO CLUE what is going on and have a MENTAL BREAK DOWN and nothing good comes out of it.

Let me be the first to say don’t freak out!

We all have to go through the same thing. So first step, get a buddy to study with and things will run a lot smoother, they will be able to explain to you what you don’t understand and you could do the same for them.

The second step is finding a place to study… either the library, Monty’s, JKA, or your bed. But sometimes you need a different place, a new atmosphere to get the ball rolling.

Some spots that you would never think of is going to:
  • Dunkin Donuts on Route 11
  • Flog and Flame on Main Street
  • Panera Bread by Wal-Mart
This will give you new scenery to look at and maybe get more work done.

The last thing to do is to actually study. You need to make sure no distractions are around. So if you are easily distracted don’t go out side, because you might see a butterfly and go… “Oh look there’s a butterfly.”

Turn off your phone or put it on silent and make sure all social media is disconnected from its notifications. Make sure you are comfortable in your environment and get going.

Now, go out and conquer the stress of the test!

— Samantha Gross, sophomore telecommunications major #HuskyUnleashed

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

One idea can go a long way


LADIES - Are you aware that there is an entire month dedicated solely to us?

Over the past three decades, the month of March has been devoted to empowering women of all ages through a month long celebration of recognizing the most dominant and influential women in history. Since 1980, National Women’s History Month has been committed to highlighting their contributions and how they continue to affect our present-day society.

It’s hard not to feel a huge wave of compassion and respect for these historical female figures who have opened up doors and possibilities for all young women today. Their stories and successes continue to motivate females to be individualistic in a leading male culture.

There’s Nancy Reagan, former first lady, who taught us that, “A woman is like a teabag - only in hot water do you realize how strong she is”. And Helen Keller, prominent educator and internationally respected humanitarian, who proclaimed that, “No effort that we make to attain something beautiful is ever lost”. And then there’s Oprah Winfrey, the first black female host of a nationally syndicated daily talk show, who showed women that, “There is no greater gift you can give or receive than to honor your calling. It’s why you were born/"

By challenging humanities assumptions that women are not socially, politically, or economically equal to males, these legendary figures in history have been able to overcome adversity and achieve their dreams while continuing to empower females of all ages beyond their years.

Every March, Women’s History Month recognizes the brilliant women who continue to influence present day females in their own personal and distinctive ways. For me, my leading role model is a woman who was able to overcome the hardship and adversity she faced as a single mother who dreamed of pursuing a career as a writer.

In 1990 on a crowded train to London’s Kings Cross Station with her young daughter at her side, an exciting idea for a story fell into Joanne “Jo” Rowling’s mind. There was a young boy with messy black hair and round shaped glasses, who had unknowing knowledge that he was a wizard. By continuing to pursue this story idea, Rowling went from living a simple life as an eager writer living on state benefits to creating the multi-million dollar bestselling franchise that is known as Harry Potter.

Rowling, formerly known as Joanne, wanted to use initials instead of her full name on the cover of the Harry Potter books in order to target both genders. Her publisher agreed on her theory that a group of young boys would be reluctant to buy a story written by an obvious female name like Joanne. Since Rowling did not have a middle name, she decided to adopt her paternal grandmother’s name, Kathleen, for the middle initial. The creation of her famous pen name, J.K. Rowling, makes me appreciate her as an artist all the more. For a previously unknown writer who worked her way to the top, she did not care about the glitz and glory of fame. What she cared about was attracting readers to her stories.

My admiration for Rowling as an artist has never stemmed from her fortune and fame. What I adore about her as a person is my knowledge of her journey through failure and rejection.

Rowling has proved that one idea can go a long way if you have the knack and determination. Since the release of the beloved Harry Potter series, her stories have been translated into 73 languages, selling millions of copies and accumulating over 20 billion dollars through movie adaptations.

But despite her achievements, Rowling stated that at one point in time, “By every usual standard, I was the biggest failure I knew”. Back in 1995 when Rowling finished her manuscript for the first Harry Potter novel, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, she submitted the final copy to over twelve publishing houses, all of which rejected the manuscript (I’m sure this has become the biggest regret of their lives). A year later, she was finally given the go by an editor from a publishing house in London.

For a young and aspiring professional about to graduate with an unsure future ahead of me, it is so symbolic to know that someone as lucrative and well known as Rowling was once a college graduate in my questionable shoes. At this point in my life, I’m not sure where I will be a year from now. But I hope to be journeying down a career path that makes me as happy as storytelling does for Rowling.

To me, Rowling’s real life story is more incredible than any work of fiction. By following her rocky journey, I have learned that you must push through the difficult times in life. Within every challenge there are great doses of life to be lived.

When I look back at my childhood, reading the Harry Potter series and watching the films was a huge bonding experience for my siblings and me who have always shared a love for Rowling’s storytelling. By doing what she loves, Rowling has been able to touch the lives of millions, inspiring boys and girls across the world to follow their wildest dreams no matter the defeat or failure they may face along the way.

Some of my favorite and most profound quotes by Rowling I have grown to feel a connection to over the lifespan of the fantasy world that is Harry Potter include but are not limited to:
  • “It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.”
  • “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.”
  • “It is our choices that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities.”
  • “In dreams, we enter a world that’s entirely our own.”
With a chance to give recognition to a brilliant female in history who has impacted my life, Women’s History Month lives on to continue telling the tales of symbolic women like Rowling.

This year’s Women’s History month theme, “Weaving the Stories of Women’s Lives”, really relates to how Rowling has inspired me to continue in her legacy of overcoming challenges and journeying on to reach happiness and one’s full potential.

This coming June, Bloomsburg University will be sponsoring the 25th Annual International Conference on female author Virginia Woolf, one of the leading modernists of the twentieth century. This year’s theme, “Virginia Woolf and Her Female Contemporaries”, seeks to recognize Woolf’s writing along with the work of her contemporaries and how today’s society of young artists compare to that of Woolf and her colleagues.

With the 2015 Women’s History Month under wraps, it is vital for our small population of unique undergraduates and graduates here at Bloomsburg University to recognize inspiring females who have contributed to the gender equality that exists in our university community today.

— Rachael Scicchitano, senior communication studies major #HuskyLife #ProfessionalU

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Carpe College ... don't get stuck in a 4-year routine

We all get those emails from our professors, advisers and department heads about "upcoming opportunities" and "volunteer position availabilities." But let's be honest, how many of these messages go unread and/or unopened?

Most of them.

We students have far too much going on, right? Between waking up on time for class, making time for meals, studying and sometimes even working, where could we POSSIBLY find time to add anything to our schedules?

Yes, I realize that it would look good on my resume, but what is the concrete value of any of these experiences? What am I getting out of it? Is it worth getting out of bed on a Saturday morning to volunteer at a campus program or community event?

Probably not.

This is the way I thought throughout most of my undergraduate career. Don't get me wrong, during those four years, I maintained an above-average GPA, became captain of the women's basketball team, tutored for the disability center and held a part-time job (about 10 hours per week). It may seem like a lot, but now that I've begun to actually read the emails being sent by my mentors, I am realizing how much more I could have done with that time and how many connections I probably missed.

When I graduated with my undergraduate degree, I knew nothing about what I wanted to do with my life. I knew I enjoyed writing. I knew that I enjoyed working with people. That's about it. I did my senior internship and didn't completely despise it, so that's where I ended up after graduation. It wasn't until I finally began embracing and seeking out new opportunities that I found my real passions and could start pursuing the life that I wanted rather than the one I fell into.

Regardless of the specific opportunity we choose to pass up, we are potentially denying ourselves personal and professional connections. College is a time to discover strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes and passions. By getting stuck in a 4-year routine consisting of the same types of jobs, classes and social networks, we are being exposed to a very limited set of experiences and therefore, simultaneously prolonging the process of discovering what type of career, lifestyle and education is worth pursuing.

Here are a few of the advantages I've found to seizing opportunities, even if you aren't sure if they're "for you" or if you think you can handle the addition to your schedule:
  • Connections: Meeting people is everything! I cannot place any monetary value on the friendships and mentors i've gained through my volunteer experiences. I have connections across the country with people who can, not only help me professionally, but who have been wonderful personal supports and networks.
  • Compensation: While volunteer opportunities never offer big bucks for your participation, they do often provide things like travel costs, meal expenses and hotel accommodations. Don't be afraid to ask if any out-of-pocket costs are covered by the organization or institution before you travel too far and break your bank.
  • Experience different types of jobs: If you have an idea of what field you want to work in, use this as a chance to observe it on different levels and on various levels. You might find that you're more into the production side of things rather than being the front-(wo)man or vice versa. See what other people do in order to get a better idea of where you can see yourself.
  • Sorting through the garbage: the more you know and understand, the more you can discard what's NOT for you.
  • New places: Even if the position or job title isn't something you see yourself doing long-term, take advantage of opportunities that will allow you to travel. You might find that you really enjoy (or really don't want to end up in) certain places that you had never thought of before! Volunteer programs are great chances to experience different countries, states, cities and venues.
  • Respect: Professors, advisers and peers usually admire the fact that you're willing to take chances, which makes them more likely to throw more opportunities your way in the future! You may miss some classes or need to ask for extensions, but I've found that 95% of the time, faculty values the experience you're gaining and are more than willing to work with you as long as you communicate your plans appropriately.
  • Set yourself apart: While steady positions, degrees and long-term experience are definitely important, I am finding more and more that potential employers like to hear about my "unique" experiences and excursions even more than my schooling or day-to-day routines in my full-time positions. Those stories could be what helps them remember your interview after a day full of qualified candidates!
  • Open up future opportunities: There is real value in relationships. Others can offer support, advice and direction based on their own unique experiences. The more you volunteer for, the more people you meet. The more people you meet, the more opportunities they can present you with as you move forward!
  • Even if you hate the actual "job" you end up doing, most of these positions are part-time and temporary. Really, there's not much to lose. You never know what you'll discover when you stop ignoring those emails! Maybe even your future... Just go for it!
Social media: @_alyssameyers

— Alyssa Meyers is obtaining a graduate degree in Counseling and College Student Affairs (CSA) at Bloomsburg University, where she holds a graduate assistantship in the Student Activities Office. There, she assists in overseeing Bloomsburg's Program Board, Concert Committee and other groups and committees related to campus-wide event and activity planning.

Alyssa also holds a part-time position at Penn State University's Hazleton campus, where she is the Assistant Coordinator in the Office of Residence Life. In this position, she oversees a 10-person student Resident Assistant staff, works with the full-time residence life staff and participates in on-call or "Duty" responsibilities.

Prior to starting her career in student affairs, worked as a caseworked at Columbia County Children and Youth Services. She gained experience in crisis management, community health, and strength-based intervention strategies. Last summer, Alyssa moved to the Los Angeles area and worked with the Student Life and Engagement staff at Marymount California University. The focal point of her summer was designing an LGBT Safe Zone training manual and additional programming for the upcoming academic year.



Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Empowering your Inner Husky



To me, attending the 8th annual Husky Student Leadership Summit was one of the most valuable ways I have spent a Saturday during my career at Bloomsburg University. Notice I said the 8th annual summit? Yes, this summit has been going on for the past eight years, and as a senior I could slap myself for not becoming a part of this incredible experience sooner.

But I won’t allow myself to complain; one days’ worth of speaking with prominent alumni, hearing networking tips, and attending speaker’s panels was enough to make me feel super inspired to become the professional I seek to be.

Leading up to the summit, I was provided with a list of session options to attend throughout the day. I decided to go with sessions covering topics on networking, professional development, and leadership, which I believed would help me in my quest to improve my overall professional skills. Each session offered students with a chance to hear real world career advice from BU alumni through their personal stories and experiences.

Each session, I made sure to scribble down some quotes I felt were great tips from the alumni staff. In the second session of the day, ’87 Husky alumni Alana Gallo talked about her positive and negative experiences reviewing student resumes throughout her career. “Everyone looks the same on paper…so what makes you stand out?” This quote could not be more spot on to my life right now. Over the last month or two I have been in the process of sending out my info to several companies and organizations and have only heard back from a few places. I’ve been thinking - is there something wrong with my resume? Am I too standard among my competition?

So I’m sitting there in Gallo’s session, contemplating what my next step should be to become a more unique electronic applicant. And that’s when it hit me – I was doing it right there and then! By attending the Husky Leadership Summit, I was able to gain ample experience and opportunity that my competition may be lacking. Networking with alumni is such a crucial factor in the job search process and is something I need to continue to take advantage of as I journey through life as a pre and post-grad.

Gallo also talked about employers who would rather have more resumes in the NO pile than the YES pile. Upon hearing this, I looked around to find the student audience with awestruck faces. But she’s absolutely right - if employers have any immediate doubt in your potential, you have some major work to do on your resume, your cover letter, and your overall digital presence.

I can’t imagine how many resumes and cover letters employers have to look at each year. Imagine if that was your job and everyone’s resumes were extremely similar. Pretty boring, I would think?

And I’m sure it is difficult to narrow down the applicants when no one is really standing out. Employers don’t have the time to sit there and slowly dissect what you’ve sent them. So it is important to leave a memorable impression that will immediately catch their attention, whether that be through your outstanding GPA, your involvement in clubs and organizations, your digital portfolio, leadership positions, or relevant internship experience. Make sure to highlight what makes you YOU! With a fantastic digital impression, employers will be curious and excited to meet the real deal in an interview.

Midway through the day, the alumni already had me feeling so enthused to make a name for myself. Because of the useful tips I received while attending the summit, it has become my mission to have no red flags and no questions asked. My goal is to work towards being placed, without a doubt, in an employer’s YES pile based on their overall first impression of me.

Other advice I took to heart came from Kristin Austin, ’02 Husky alumni who spoke with us about her experiences networking and developing her personal brand over the years. Austin, who is currently coordinator for new students at BU, brought to the session her excitement and enthusiasm for student triumph by telling her humorous yet successful networking stories. Austin’s advice - you have to be courageous and open to stepping out of your comfort zone if you want to make potential networking connections.

Networking is not fast and it is certainly not easy. But it is an action that is entirely up to you. It is your choice whether or not to start a conversation with a potential contact. It is your choice to ask for help from a family member with prior experience in a company of interest. Austin preached that without physically taking action, no one will be there to help you. And most likely these networks who were once in our shoes would be pleased to help.

By keeping an open mind and a positive attitude, networking can become a prime factor in any student’s progression towards landing a job post-graduation. Although my attendance at the summit was mostly for my personal benefit, it also allowed me to participate in the Student Involvement Resource Fair luncheon with Communication club NCASC aka the National Communication Association Student Chapter.

There, I met with our student president Kate Armstrong, and together we spread the word to the hungry crowd of leaders about the benefits of joining the club. I was also able to snap some photos for the BloomsburgU Instagram account, capturing lively and interactive moments throughout the summit.

Overall, my participation in the summit provided me with a chance to really reflect on what I have been building for myself at BU. A memorable moment from one of the alumni speakers was when she compared the student audience to products and that each of us were products in the process of development.

By the time graduation arrives, I hope to have created the best possible self-product imaginable based on the classes, professors, employers, and experiences I have utilized while at BU. By attending professional events such as the Husky Student Leadership Summit, I have been able to continue working towards preparing for the world outside of Bloomsburg.

A huge shout out is in order for all of the Husky alumni who took the time to support the students at this event, along with the hardworking staff of BU leaders who made this unique experience possible.

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” – John Quincy Adams.

— Rachael Scicchitano, senior communication studies major #HuskyLife #ProfessionalU

Friday, March 13, 2015

China Today: An immersing and exciting experience



Today was another beautiful day in the city of Kunming. After class and lunch we hopped on the bus and headed for Guandu Old Town. I wasn’t really sure what to expect from here, like most things, but was pleasantly surprised when we arrived.

Getting off the bus we walked towards what looked like another outside market with beautiful rea lanterns leading us to more rows of shops, restaurants, and historical buildings that all told a story. We first stopped at this beautifully designed building that was surrounded by little Chinese ponds with lilly pads, lanterns, and Chinese checker boards. We explored the shops which were the best I have seen yet, I couldn’t resist buying something.

These shops seemed the most organized and had more of a selection then the ones I’ve visited so far. I could’ve spent my whole day there if I had the chance. After the Old Town we headed for the YNNU cheggong campus which is a more modern version of where we're studying at now.

This campus was so huge it seemed like it could be a city by itself. After touring the extravagant campus and hearing how much tuition is compared to what we are already paying at Bloomsburg, my heart broke a little bit. The students at YNNU cheggong campus really got it good.

Today was the day we’ve all been waiting for … the Stone Forrest! I have been excited about seeing this infamous site since I found out I was officially going to China. The Stone Forrest is located right outside Kunming and is basically a Forrest full of both tall and short limestone, all once below sea level. Our tour guide, dressed in yet another stunning traditional outfit, made everything that more entertaining.

Every now and then I’d feel someone’s hand on my shoulder and it would be her making comments like, “Hello!, here take picture!,” or referring to our group as , “many English people let's go.” She was so energized leading us through the tunnels, valleys and mountains of stone while everyone is trying their best to be cautious on the slippery stone stairs. Soon enough she lead us into another shopping center, which actually turned out be tea testing.

If I have learned anything by now it’s this Country loves their tea, which I have no problem with. I’m so used to coffee but since I’ve been here my taste buds have learned to love tea; which tastes so natural and feels healthier. Seeing the Stone Forrest and the people, like our tour guide, who inherit it for their day to day lives make me wish it wasn’t such a tourist attraction. Although it should be shared with the world and it’s great to know some history when walking through, I felt more rushed. In my opinion if we could just receive a map and explore it for ourselves, it’d be a greater adventure (not to sound picky.) If everyone has to make a living somehow, and that’s how the villages surrounding the Stone Forrest do so, I accept that.

Ever played real life frogger?


The game where you try to cross the street but have to make sure you don’t get hit by cars that do not plan on stopping for you ? That’s kind of like Kunming. It's funny because the amount of mopeds driven here you would think they would have their own lane but that is not the case. Cars, Buses, and Mopeds all drive in the same lanes and are not very courteous of one another.

In America, I feel like in the cities the traffic is more controlled by either signs or stop lights but here it seems a little bit more unorganized with much more people. They do not really believe in “Yield to pedestrians,” you just got to go when it’s the right timing in hopes of not getting hit since it looks like they are not going to stop.

Cars and busses go at a regular speed of about 50, which doesn’t seem so fast. When they are driving, they don’t plan on stopping; and if they reach that point where they almost hit you they just swerve around you.

Also they love to use the horn. When we started off in the villages all I could hear when I went to sleep was dogs barking, now I here constant horns (not just like “honk honk” it’s more like hoooonnnnkkkk hooooonnnnnnkkkkk.) Everyone is very selfish when driving, just yesterday my two friends and I, witnessed a minor accident where a middle-aged women on a mo-ped was hit by another mo-ped. The moped drove away as the women stood in the middle of the intersection with here broken parts until a kind citizen helped her. Cars and busses just drove past here not offering any help.

Today we learned a little bit more about Yunnan and all it’s different minorities. First we visited the Yunnan Minority Museum which was filled with ancient artifacts, scrolls, books, clothing and all that good stuff from years and years of the Yunnan Minorities. We have been to museums before but this one was the most interesting since they were courteous enough to include English. The people of Yunnan are way more into their culture and ancient ancestors then anything I have ever seen in America. They value their minorities enough to create a two floor multi-room exhibit filled with relics and works of art.

Although we do have museums such as the Smithsonian, MOMA, Museum of Natural History and so on, the Minority Museum is strictly showcasing the Yunnan Province. After lunch we headed for the Yunnan Minority village, which I thought would be just another row of shops but then we received tickets. After we got our tickets we entered the gates to what seemed to be an amusement park of all the different minorities located in Yunnan. Each minority had their own exhibit so we were able to see tons of different ethnic backgrounds and what they value most.

The most exciting part of all this would have to be the Elephant performance which was a total surprise. These elephants were so talented I was amazed watching them. You could tell they were very well-trained which was kind of upsetting when they would mess up and get yanked by a chain; I guess since they are large wild animals that is the only way to tame them. The best part was the show was very interactive with the audience and we were able to feed them and be a part of the show. Towards the end after all their majestic tricks, we could pay 20 yuan to have our picture taken with them. They set it up so two elephants were holding trunks so whoever wanted a picture could sit and hold onto them for a quick snap shot. I was very amazed by this whole experience.

I have been immersed in so many new and exciting things so far during my time spent in China. Last night we left the city of Kunming where we’ve been living and learning this past week and a half and headed North towards Lijiang and Dali. Instead of road tripping via bus we took an overnight train. I have seen plenty of trains in my day but never one with bunk-beds! It was almost like a Hogwarts experience minus the wizards.

Each cart had a set of miniature dorms with bunk beds making sleeping an interesting experience. After about 7 hours we arrived in Lijiang early morning and were greeted by our new tour guides. We wasted no time eating breakfast and checking in so we could start touring the old town of Lijiang. Being here only a day it already feels nice to get out of the city and into a place where fresh air is no problem. Lijiang is populated by the Naxi people who have all been very kind and welcoming so far. They take very good care of the village and aside from the Chinese symbols, you’d think you were in Colorado or something with the snow-topped covered mountains and log-cabined boutiques.

One of the main reasons for visiting Lijiang was to tour the Jade Dragon Mountain located here. Although it was the coldest part of this trip it also was my favorite place we visited. I’m usually used to going to large mountains for snowboarding purposes but getting the chance to walk and admire how beautiful the scenery was made everything that more surreal. There was not one cloud in sight and the mountain and trees were snow covered making it a great day for photography. Towards the bottom of the mountain were crystal blue meadows that were so clear you could see right to the bottom. Along the meadow laid the reflection of the mountain making for an overall breathtaking experience (literally cause of the altitude.) If Jade Dragon Mountain wasn’t on my bucket list before, it is now and I am thankful I had the chance of experiencing it.

China is very admirable for their unique designs of both architecture and fabrics. It’s interesting to see how they get their inspiration from surrounding elements such as nature and animals especially. I’ve always been interested in clothing and different types of fashion fads and trends.

Coming to China allowed me to explore a variety of different fabrics, textiles, and patterns among the people here. In America we are so used to shopping at our favorite chain stores and having all our clothes already made for us. It is rare to look at a tag on a new shirt you bought and see, “Made in America,” when shopping at big name department stores.

Among the places we have visited I’ve been exposed to so many different types of fabrics and styles, mostly all hand-thread and manufactured. Sheets of fabric are showcased everywhere from store windows to car door windows. Here, keeping to traditional clothing and embroideries isn’t uncommon.

In Yunnan I’ve seen a lot of the same patterns repeated in different cities that include similar embroidery of flowers and naturistic designs. One pattern I haven’t seen a lot of is cotton. In America we love our cotton tees sweatshirts and sweatpants. We go to class and aren’t surprised to see half the students still in their pajamas, which seems unlikely in China.

Speaking on behalf of my age group, I feel a lot of the Chinese young adults and youth like to express themselves culturally through how they dress more than what I am used to seeing. Everyone has their own type of style whether its high fashion or sticking to the traditional embroidery. I have seen more of high fashion in the city of Kunming where more of the villages like to stick to traditional embroidery, especially with age.

— Annie Sapio, art studio major #HuskyAbroad

Led by Vera Viditz-Ward, professor of art and art history, and Jing Luo, Ph.D., professor of languages and cultures, a group of Bloomsburg University students spent three weeks in China studying language, culture and photography. The group, hosted by Yunnan Normal University, traveled to Kunming, Hekou, Yuanyuang, Mengzi, Dali, and Lijiang, where they had close contact with a variety of ethnic groups and learned about their lives and cultures.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Warming up to Husky Life



The winter season could put a real chill on some outdoor plans. You never know what to expect and if it’s warm enough to do some activities outside. But there is always one thing you can count on, and its Netflix.

Netflix is one of the most addicting websites a college student can go on.

Let's be honest we all have gone through a Netflix binge at least once a semester. Watching eight hours of Netflix in a row is something I know I look forward to.

The hard part is that once you get connected to a TV show you are bound to finish it in a week.
Six seasons. More like four days.

It’s a real sickness we get from watching Netflix.

Winding down and relaxing?


College life can be very stressful but coming to a stop in the on going day to take a breather and catch up on Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Lost, or Gossip Girl, can give the college student exactly what they need to break away from life for a little.

For me, my ultimate favorite show is Gossip Girl. As a Jersey girl who lives right by New York City I was able to really connect and envy the characters within the show.

I always wanted to live on the Upper East Side and this show took me right into that life style. Living in big fancy apartments, and going shopping everyday is only a girls dream.

But this show has so much more than material aspects. Every episode dives deeper and deeper into the character lives and with large amounts of money comes dirty secrets and betrayal. As the audience, we know the secrets and just want to scream at the characters to tell them what’s going on, but in the end we are seeing out of the eyes of the Gossip Girl. And we can’t wait to hear, “XOXO Gossip Girl."

As for the guys or girls who aren’t into the high society life style, another great option is Prison Break. My boyfriend and all of his roommates are obsessed with this show. This show has just enough action, drama and romance in it to make both sexes happy.

I occasionally watch it with him, because it’s a great show for us both to enjoy. Michael and Lincoln are thrown into prison for a crime they were framed for, but by trying to escape they are causing more kayos, and with kayos causes drama and suspense. We just hope that one day they will live a free life.

The winter weather gives us that perfect excuse to lie in bed all day Saturday and watch our favorite shows or movies. Its endless fun and excitement in the warm humble abode of your room.

Its nothing to be ashamed of, we all partake in this satisfying binge. As for me, my next series will be Friends. I have seen almost all of the episodes from reruns, but finally I will be able to watch it in order.

Surviving the Semester Freeze


— Samantha Gross, sophomore telecommunications major #HuskyUnleashed