Last Post for the year

Two years of working with transfer students is coming to an end…and I am sad that I’ve reached another transition point. But I am also overwhelmed by the joy of the many students I’ve had the privilege to meet and the great times we have shared.

It has been such a pleasure to partner with a faculty and staff who truly care for students.  My co-workers, outstanding student leaders, always greeted each event with enthusiasm and a genuine desire to make a difference by creating community. But the most wonderful part of this job has been when a fellow student has been courageous enough to ask a question, to ask for help because for me, being able to respond to another, to hear the question, to meet the need had made this position meaningful.  Everytime I am able to help another precious person, I am able to pay forward all the generous help I’ve received along my journey.

I’m so thrilled that I get to work with this group next year…I can’t wait for those burning questions! Thanks to every one.

Living the Mission

164903_10200750653350867_1424051945_nAs we all know, the mission of our school is embedded in the principle of social justice, and making a positive impact in the community. We hear every day that we are called to live SU’s mission, but what does that really mean? I guess it depends on how you see your life at SU. If for you being an SU student is just going to school and getting grades toward your degree and leave, then it is difficult to live that mission day to day. But if you’ve understood what that mission means and what it entails, then every class you take at SU, even if it’s a major requirement, every club activities you are involved in will be your participation to make this mission alive and visible to all.

For me, living SU mission never had a meaning until I became a TSL. To be honest, I didn’t know what a transfer success leader was until I was offered that position. I agreed to the position without fully grasping what it meant to be a TSL. But now that I am leaving SU in 6 weeks, I can tell that I am far away from the beginning. I know now what it means to be a TSL and how this helps me living our school’s mission.

Being a TSL is a very fulfilling thing when you see the difference that we make, although little, on campus. It’s just has been an amazing experience to become a resource transfer students can turn to when they have a question, when they need direction or when they just need to be greeted.

I am graduating this June, and I can’t wait to take with me what I learned as a TSL or just as an SU student trying to live our mission. Here is what I learned: I learned that being a leader, doesn’t always mean pushing people to do things, but being a leader is trying the hardest to serve those you are supposed to lead. I learned that if we want to see change in this world, we should be the change we would like to see. I also learned that helping other people is very rewarding.

For me this is how I lived the mission at SU. I participated in club activities that I knew are working toward the changes I want to see happening, or those dealing with issues that are dear to me.  Combining class material, me being a TSL and an involved student in some activities and improving myself every day to become a leader who serves, I have lived my SU mission to the fullest of my abilities. And I know that I will take this with me in whatever endeavors I will embark upon.

Fabrication

If you know me, then you know I can’t go a week without doing some sort of craft project.

This week’s craft was a burlap “W” for my fiance’s last name, and my soon-to-be last name.

This project was simple; it took a wooden “W” from Michael’s, a roll of burlap (also from Michael’s), and Aleen’s spray adhesive glue (guess where from? yep, Michael’s) and scissors.

I cut pieces of burlap that would cover the front of the “W” and made sure to layer it so the color of the wood wouldn’t show through.

Before I put the burlap down I sprayed the W, in a well-ventilated area, only on the spots I would cover with the burlap. I would layer each part that I sprayed in two layers of burlap.

Image

Burlap is an interesting fabric, and smells like a barn would.

My fingers were covered in the little tiny strings of burlap by the end of it, it was driving me crazy.

I reflected on making the W, and I found it much easier than many other crafts I had done before.

Fabricating things, not with burlap, but with our thoughts can cloud things, ruin the experience, and often times make us focus on things that don’t really exist to the extent we think they do.

Spring quarter is full of sunshine (sometimes), new relationships blooming, and the last hoorah of the calendar school year, if you don’t take summer classes.

Doing crafts allows me to sort through my thoughts and not fabricate things in my life,

more so it’s a time for me to clear my head.

What do you do to clear your head?

<3 Alexis :)

Need some “repurposing”?

Hello fellow transfers!

Spring is in full swing, and normally, from my experience, this time of the year flies.

Many love spring cleaning, rearranging their dorms,

cleaning out their cars, and being outdoors when it isn’t raining, here in the PNW.

I recently did a repurposing project; took something old, smelly and useless, and made it into something new, beautiful and useful. It was refreshing, new and exciting to create something with my bare hands.

Not only can repurposing take an artsy/crafty spin, it can also meant to be an interpersonal experience of taking time to rest, reflect and essentially “repurpose” your life, mission, values, and goals. Now, that is refreshing.

This is the project that took one weekend full of Chalk paint fumes, Dark waxes and countless hours (really only 48) to complete.

Image

Image

I was proud, happy and grounded, but also found it a great outlet to thinking, reflecting, and getting very angry at times, at how things really didn’t turn out how I wanted them to. Ultimately, I was happy, relieved and felt very accomplished at the beautiful piece that I had finished.

But, isn’t that part of the journey? Not like I’m going to “find myself” through the repurposing of a hutch, but that I was 98% of the time, by myself, singing, talking to myself or throwing paintbrushes.

Nonetheless, a beautiful outcome, a fun and valuable experience.

Happy Spring, all. :)

<3 Alexis

Spring Is Here

Let’s all take a deep breath.

I don’t know about you, but that was one hell of a quarter. By that, I mean it’s been rough waters for the past two months. But now it’s over! I moved from a tiny studio next to the SeaTac airport to a righteous two-bedroom in West Seattle and my back is killing me! I wanted to spend Spring Break sitting and reading, but at this point it’s mostly been spent writing and driving. I’ve got a lot of things in the works and can’t wait for Spring quarter to start. But for now, I’d like to share my favorite story from Winter quarter!
 
It all started a few weeks ago when bad grades began to get the better of me. I was very low on money and had just filed my taxes, but the refund was a ways away. A midterm was approaching in my literature class and the class hadn’t turned anything in all quarter. It looked to me as though half of my grade would be dependent on how this thing goes.
 
It was Monday. We had been given the study guide last Friday, and I had just completed two long, quiet overnights in a row, rereading my 5 lb. text book until four in the morning. On top of a little personal drama with a friend my morning was undoubtedly leaning upon my energy drink to stand.
 
I walked to the back of the student book store to grab another energy drink. I thought about getting something “bready” so I wouldn’t vibrate like a phone during my test, but decided that adding another X calories and Y grams of artificial sugars into my bloodstream was just cruel.
 
And then I saw the big red wall. Adjacent to the checkout stand was a newly outfitted Verizon Wireless kiosk, with eight demonstration phones for sale and an employee bearing an embroidered logo on his grey vest. I understood why the student bookstore sold computers and even tablets. But phones, contracts, and cases? I’ve sold cell phones before, and its an industry of the mall that I’m glad to be away from. This has no place in the Academian storefront! My blood boiled, fueled by an empty-caloric promise on a blue can. “I’ve got a lot of confidence in this company, man,” said the guy behind the counter talking to one of the student employees.
 
That’s it! I whipped out my phone in switchblade-like fashion and took to the internet to complain. My reasons were petty, but my patience with the world was out. Four hours of sleep after twenty hours of reading, writing, and rereading had let me to Twitter, an imaginary place seeping in arrogance and narcissism. Dignity can wait.
 
My mouth and intentions were foul and selfish, but with them out of my head and onto the internet I could continue cramming for the midterm. An hour later I took the test and decided to head straight home and recover some of sleep I lost. But when I got home an hour later I realized I miss a notification on my phone. Someone had tweeted me back!
Image
Wow. Now I feel like a jerk. I didn’t directly tweet them, hashtag them, or anything, but someone somewhere found my anger and turned it around in the most humble 103 characters I’ve ever read. I forget that I rely on this company to send pithy tweets as it is, and here I was griping at a situation I didn’t understand.
Image
This may ending up being one big commercial for Verizon, but I think this whole thing should serve as a reminder to be humble like T.H. was. Humility is a rare thing to see in the 21st century, but I think we would do well to look for it or exemplify it a little more often.

Need a Job?

The Department of Commuter and Transfer Student Life is now hiring! 

Apply to be a Transfer SUccess Leader for the 2013-2014 academic year! 

Get paid to Care, Connect, and Build Community among Transfer Students!

Applications are due on Thursday, April 4th | Apply on the Redhawk Network

Check out our online flyer for more details | Click Here

Questions?  Contact Sha’terika at perkinss@seattleu.edu

tsl publicity

Hitting the gym and feel better, why not?

SU gym

If you feel like you are having a bad day then you should work out!

Do you know that the Seattle University gym is very well equipped and the staff is super friendly? I have been working out and feeling good about myself for the past week. Working out helps me concentrate on studying and sleep better. I definitely recommend you come and check our gym (or the people at the gym if you want to get some motivation).

Here is an article on the benefits of working out. For those that do not have time to read all of this, just skip it and hit the gym. I guarantee that you will experiences all the benefits stated bellow.

No. 1: Exercise controls weight

Exercise can help prevent excess weight gain or help maintain weight loss. When you engage in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn. You don’t need to set aside large chunks of time for exercise to reap weight-loss benefits. If you can’t do an actual workout, get more active throughout the day in simple ways — by taking the stairs instead of the elevator or revving up your household chores.

No. 2: Exercise combats health conditions and diseases

Worried about heart disease? Hoping to prevent high blood pressure? No matter what your current weight, being active boosts high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good,” cholesterol and decreases unhealthy triglycerides. This one-two punch keeps your blood flowing smoothly, which decreases your risk of cardiovascular diseases. In fact, regular physical activity can help you prevent or manage a wide range of health problems and concerns, including stroke, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, depression, certain types of cancer, arthritis and falls.

No. 3: Exercise improves mood

Need an emotional lift? Or need to blow off some steam after a stressful day? A workout at the gym or a brisk 30-minute walk can help. Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed. You may also feel better about your appearance and yourself when you exercise regularly, which can boost your confidence and improve your self-esteem.

No. 4: Exercise boosts energy

Winded by grocery shopping or household chores? Regular physical activity can improve your muscle strength and boost your endurance. Exercise and physical activity deliver oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and help your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. And when your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy to go about your daily chores.

No. 5: Exercise promotes better sleep

Struggling to fall asleep? Or to stay asleep? Regular physical activity can help you fall asleep faster and deepen your sleep. Just don’t exercise too close to bedtime, or you may be too energized to fall asleep.

No. 6: Exercise can be fun

Exercise and physical activity can be a fun way to spend some time. It gives you a chance to unwind, enjoy the outdoors or simply engage in activities that make you happy. Physical activity can also help you connect with family or friends in a fun social setting. So, take a dance class, hit the hiking trails or join a soccer team. Find a physical activity you enjoy, and just do it. If you get bored, try something new.

The bottom line on exercise
Exercise and physical activity are a great way to feel better, gain health benefits and have fun. As a general goal, aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. If you want to lose weight or meet specific fitness goals, you may need to exercise more. Remember to check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program, especially if you have any health concerns.

Citation: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/exercise/HQ01676/NSECTIONGROUP=2.

Hola to all you transfer students!

I can’t believe how fast this Winter Quarter has flown by. This quarter seems particularly hard and almost everyone I’ve spoken with on campus has seemed frazzled. I’m not sure if it was the campus cruds that seemed to hit everyone after the start of the new year or just the usual absence of sunshine, but everyone just seemed a bit off kilter.

But there have been some bright spots.  The International Student Center Dinner on the 26th of January was a great evening. Lots of good food, great music and entertainment, and there was even a breakout of Salsa dancing.

The TEDx event on the 10th of February was awesome.  The theme was “Unconventional Leadership” and it was inspiring to see SU students, faculty, and alumni on stage sharing their experiences. The values we talk about here on campus can take you far in the real world.

I also attended two basketball games at Key Arena…and did some serious snacking and networking at the receptions before each game. It was a great chance to meet alumni, to hear about their experiences at SU, and to see how they remain connected. The cheerleaders, dance team, and Red Line rocked the house!

Is there a theme here?  Just this – jump in, get involved, and you will discover how rich these added events can make your experience at SU.  For all you commuter students, make sure that you are taking advantage of the collegia – another great opportunity to connect, network, and of course, have some great snacks.

Smile at me next time we meet on campus – I’ll do the same.

giving_thanks

On the move… again.

Hey Transfers. My name is Alexis Clark, and I’m a senior Liberal Studies Major here at Seattle University. I’m an off-campus Commuter student, as well as a TSL welcoming Transfers in, each quarter!

A large part of my connection to Seattle U is that I get to drive, 45 minutes to class 3 times a week (this quarter), and will be driving 5 days a week (next quarter). I find Seattle U worth the drive, but it wasn’t always just a drive away; I lived on campus when I first transferred in, and again Sophomore year.

My fiance and I just moved to Tacoma, from Lakewood. And man, was it a process! Our friends ditched us, it was downpour, and we were both super excited to move…..

We decided to rent a Uhaul.

Image

 A large part of my experience in college, maybe like yours, is the fact that the only thing constant, is change. Every year at SU has been different, and reflecting back on each year, I’ve gone through so much change. Through living on campus, to dropping and adding new classes, to declaring a major, to signing up for my LAST quarter of classes, they were all big changes.

Similar to packing your life up, putting it in boxes, tubs and plastic garbage bags, Transferring in is like packing. What if things get broken? or You get lost? What happens when there’s a leak? Or You don’t know how to sign up for classes?

My best advice? Breathe, and if you can, rent a Uhaul. If a Uhaul doesn’t help, then talk to friends, call your parents, or blog and you’ll get your worries off your chest.

I hope you enjoyed this blog, and I hope to see y’all around campus!

<3

Alexis Clark

First Post!

Howdy! I am Daniel Vogt, a junior transfer student at Seattle University majoring in Creative Writing. The great Pacific Northwest has been my home for as long as I can remember and to this day I have never owned an umbrella. For the last two years it’s just been me and the greater Seattle area while I’ve worked all over it, from backstage in theaters, the mall, and most recently at Nintendo as a product tester (by that, I mean game tester. And yes, it was awesome).

In fact. that’s why I’m back at school after taking a two-year break. I really do love working, but I knew it was time to hit the books again when I came across an enticing job post at work. The only thing between me and it was a degree and a little more credibility with the company. So here I am, with my cat, putting off tonight’s study for just a few more minutes to enjoy a moment where I can reflect on the last four months of my life and how different it has been than the four that came before that.

I picked Seattle University because of it’s acclaimed English/Creative Writing program. To be honest, school has never been my favorite thing in the world. But thanks to great teachers and great books, I knew I could always look forward to English class. After two years of transformational job experiences, switching gears for two years of education has been difficult.

When I decided to take a break from school my family was in the final phase of moving across the country to join the rest of our big family in Tennessee. I grew up in the suburbs near Tacoma, and since I started my working life I chose to live places further and further north from where I was raised.

In spending more time in Seattle, I’ve been realizing how much of a strange tourist I feel like to the city I call home. It’s humbling to be surprised by something new everyday, be it a new favorite place to eat (Potbelly Sandwich Shop at 1200 Madison St!), or a new friend.

Thank you for reading, and I hope the Winter quarter is treating you well!

Sincerely, Danny Vogt.