Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Wait a second!

Welcome home to me! I got back home to McLean, Virginia yesterday and this is my first time home since August 19th. I was thinking that coming home after more than three months (the longest time I've ever been away) would be super weird and awkward but it hasn't been at all! I walked into my house like I was in it yesterday. I climbed into my car this morning and turned on the ignition like I've been driving regularly these past few months. Nothing different! I guess it's a nice feeling to come home and to not feel like I've been away for 25% of the year. But it's also kind of a weird feeling to just sit in my house in my pajamas, eating a sandwich, and relaxing with nothing to do. Nothing really going on, no one to see, just eating by myself...it's definitely nice to have a break from needing to call everyone on my BC contact list in order to go get something to eat.

I visited my high school today and saw seven of my old teachers. It was really nice to talk to some of the adults that had such an impact on my life and who really know me. Of course I got the whole "How's college? How's Boston? How are your classes?" And it was always just the same "Oh everything's goooood blah blah"...I wasn't really thinking about my answers. So after a long time at school and lots of talking about my new life, I got back home and made myself a sandwich. And on my iTunes, the rendition of "For Boston" by the Dropkick Murphys started playing and I said to myself, "Wait a minute! I love BC!" Now why couldn't I convey that in my myriad conversations about my college experience today? I guess I'll never know, but I'm glad I came to that realization today. I mean, I already knew I loved school...but that was while I was up there. So I'm glad I realized it while I'm at home and I'll be happy to return.

But as for now, I'm very thankful to be home for a few days. I'll be back on Friday for the football game Saturday! If we beat Maryland, we'll be making another experience at the ACC Championship in Tampa Bay. Let's go BC! Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Study Space

One thing that might not come first on your list of "what I'm looking for in a college" is study space, but it's something you should consider! In high school, you're in class for basically all of the day besides lunch, and unless you've got sports or clubs after school, you go home to do all your work. You've got your room or your kitchen or living room (or bathroom if that's how you roll..!) and any of those rooms can be at the noise level you decide. Well, in college, you're not always going to be able to dictate the noise levels or temperatures or location of your dorm room. And even the dorm lounges can get pretty noisy, so on your college search, I want you to walk around every campus you visit--go in the libraries and classrooms and lounges and imagine yourself studying in all of these places. Make sure there's a variety of spaces to your liking.
This is where BC comes in! After more almost three months here, I'm still finding new places to study every single day and I can never decide which is my favorite.

There's the Babst Library, located on Linden Lane across from St. Mary's Chapel. This is the "Harry Potter" library, because the interior looks like Hogwarts. The image displays the study room, which is usually open 24 hours a day and is completely silent. Babst is really good if you need hard chairs to stay awake, and complete silence to focus...though it is really easy to get distracted by the sheer magnificence of the room!

Next is O'Neill Library, the main library on campus, named after former speaker of the house, Tip O'Neill. The computer room is located in O'Neill, where you can get work done or just check your email quickly. In the stacks room, there are myriad tables and chairs, and amazingly comfy chairs to plop down and get some reading done. O'Neill's good if you like to be comfortable while studying, and like quiet but appreciate a little hustle and bustle going on in the library to remind you of existence on earth. (O'Neill is also great for power naps, but don't say I told you so.)

Many students also like to study in The Rat (small dining facility located in Lyons basement) or the Eagle's Nest (lunch dining hall on second floor of McElroy). Here, you can get some food and a big table and study by yourself or with friends, usually best for in between classes. There are also comfy chairs in Higgins Hall (see image on right) where you can find some quiet space between classes, or couches in Fulton located in the Quad. In the evenings, many students flock to the libraries or some will find some empty classrooms in Gasson or Carney.

All of these locations I just mentioned offer study surroundings for every type of preference, and let students switch it up a bit as I like to do. I never really considered the variety of study space colleges had to offer, but BC has definitely given me all I could ask for in that department.

So I hope this discussion has helped a little, although it was a bit long...I tend to do that.
Happy Humpday!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Post Midterm Breathing

So the general theme of the posts lately is mid-terms. This time can be very stressful and busy for any student and BC is no exception. I had to write several papers and take a couple exams but frankly, that's par for the course in college. Don't worry about this stuff when you are applying to schools!

While the last few weeks have been busy, there was a great concert sponsored on campus that featured the popular DJ RJD2. It was amazing and the event sold out by the 3rd day of ticket sales! It was a great Thursday night and you can look forward to keeping busy here at BC with that kind of stuff. There never seems to be any shortage.

With my last midterm turned in last week, I went into the city for a bit before the Notre Dame football game (kind of a big deal). I wandered Newbury with my girlfriend and we went into the world's largest Apple Store that is 3 stories tall. It's crazy and very cool if you are a Mac enthusiast. Newbury street is a great place and I would encourage any of you prospective students to check it out if you visit campus.

I'm keeping it short tonight because it's late but I'll be posting more now that I have some more time. Keep working on those applications! I hope we'll be seeing you around campus.

Justin

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Back for the first time

Hey everyone..it's been a few weeks since my last (a.k.a. first) blog entry, and I figured now would be a good time to finally make another. I am just now feeling recovered from the past week, in which I had two races and three midterms. Thankfully this week (so far) has been much less hectic.

Last week began with a race in Boston's own Franklin Park, the Mayor's Cup. Our team rested the top eight runners, but used the Mayor's Cup to determine who would take the last two spots for the Atlantic Coast Conference championship the following Saturday. I ended up placing fifth in the overall race, and first among BC runners, earning my spot for ACC's.

In the time between the Mayor's Cup and ACC's, I faced three midterms on consecutive days, with History on Wednesday, Modern Irish (the language) on Thursday, and a Theology midterm paper due Friday. While it was somewhat of a struggle to keep focused, I feel like I held my own in each.

Finally the weekend came, and with it, the ACC race, hosted by the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. As a team, BC ran to its highest place in school history, tying for sixth with the University of Maryland. Senior Tim Ritchie also set a record by finishing second overall, the highest individual finish of any BC athlete in the ACC championship history. Such great results made the flight back to Boston an enjoyable one for all ten guys that raced.

That's all the news I have as of late, but I'll certainly write another entry sometime soon.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Update!

Hey everyone! I can't believe it's been so long since my last post. I've had a crazy couple of weeks.

I'm almost done with midterms...I can't wait to be done! I've been spending a lot of time in the library focusing on all my work. The best way I've found to handle it is to make up a schedule of everything that I have to do and just cross things off as I get them done. So far I've had a Law Exam and a French Presentation. This week I have a take home exam due, a short paper, and French midterm.

I've also been working on getting everything set for spending next semester in Paris! I'm sooo excited to go. Everyone who's going on my program has started to talk about buying plane tickets and departure dates. We just had a meeting with our abroad adviser to give us all the information we need to get our Visas. I can't believe I'm actually going. We have another big meeting in the next couple of weeks, where we'll get to talk to some people who have already gone on the program.

I also just finished planning the annual Homecoming dance for UGBC, which happened last weekend. It's a big dance that we have under tents in the big parking lot on Lower Campus. 1400 people attended the dance, and despite the rain, I'd say it was a definite success! We had great food and a DJ and it was an awesome event. It was a lot of work planning, but it was awesome to see it all come together.


That's basically what's been going on with me. Keep checking back for more posts from myself and all the other bloggers!