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Now, we're counting down the final days until the end of the semester, and I'm not quite ready to leave yet.

That probably sounds pretty bonkers. I mean, I always complain that I have too much work to do, and how I never have enough time to do all the things I want to do. I've since come to the realization that this is LIFE!

LIFE is never, ever having enough time to do what you want to do! And as an adult, you have even less time to have fun, explore, and observe the awesome parts of our world.

Right now, summer break is still an escape for some of us. I do have to work, but I will have extra time to relax and recharge a little bit before next semester. I tried to change things around for the better for this semester, but old habits die hard.

Getting warmer.
Getting a little bit warmer.

We'll just have to see when the grades are released if I think I was successful or not. Right now I'm not entirely confident.

On the plus side, I am excited to say that I've really found my place here at Penn State Beaver. I struggled with being out here for a while, and if I were a weaker person I would've probably gone back home. I still want to go home in a way. However, I think about it kind of like the movie Inception, and how the main character Cobb says he just needs "this one last job" so he can go home and see his children.

If only we could all be as awesome as you, you GORGEOUS MAN YOU

I'd be home in a heartbeat if this man was waiting for me.

I'd like to think I'd kind of adapted my situation that way, in a positive light. I keep thinking to myself that I want to go places, see things, and meet new people--then I can finally go home. I can (eventually) tell my children some interesting stories of the places I've been and the people I've met. It's a slow process (we're only in Beaver county, after all) but I'm making more progress than I would've if I had stayed at home in Harrisburg. I get plenty of opportunities through campus to go places (New York, for instance) and I have great friends who live and play in Pittsburgh.

Yinz kids are killin' me.

"Yinz kids are killin' me!"

They say you're always going to be missing something. Right now, it's my family and the familiarity of home. It's easy to be in a place you've lived your whole life. But I know that I would be discontented if I never took this chance, NOW, WHILE I'M YOUNG, to do things. If I went home, then I would miss my friends here in Monaca and on the western end of the state. This is their time now (to awkwardly quote the Penn State admissions mantra) and I want to give them that time. My family had their time, for the first 19 years of my life. They will also have my time when I have kids, and want to settle down near my parents.

Right now, this is ME time! Time for self-discovery, time to gather those stories that you hear adults recount. I always seem to get the question, "How did you end up at Penn State Beaver?" I realized kind of helplessly that I came out here for the wrong reasons. I came out here for reasons other than my own, but I managed to make it a place that I wanted to be. To use a tired metaphor, it's just another chapter in this book of life.

Well, there was that one time...

Well, there was that ONE time...

Hopefully this was a little more of a positive entry for once. I'm trying my best to uphold honesty above all things in this blog, but I still want to chart my experiences.

I <3 anywhere but here

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Saturday we went on a long bus ride to New York. I only took like 10 pictures.

I don't like to take a lot of pictures when I really just want to enjoy the experience. Hence the crap iPhone pictures.

I'll come back for you, New York!

All the things

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Today was one of those days where my attention was never really completely focused on one thing. 

In class, I was distracted by screens. At work, staring at screens, I was distracted by people. In the lab, I was distracted by cute puppy pictures. I was so inattentive today that I didn't even notice texts on my phone.

Anyway, this is kind of a crappy post. I had something originally typed up about roommates, but my work laptop decided to take a s*** when I hit "post" and lost everything. (We never learn.)

In big kid news today, I bought a suit. It's grey (or brown. We can't tell) I have to wear it to my presentation on Wednesday morning at 8 a.m., and what the hell, I'll wear it this weekend at Model too.

(Model is the shortened term for a Youth and Government conference that I took part in during high school, now I help out as an adviser in college.)

Fun fact about me: I own a modest collection of hair care products. It's a damn shame too, because my roots are about 4 inches now and I can't afford to get it done. (AND THE POINT EMERGES.)

This is college, kids.

Maybe in order to keep this post at ALL relevant to my collegiate special-interest group, I'll talk about how being broke isn't all that bad. I mean, it's okay. You can make fun of yourself for being broke, drink away your money (if you're 21) and feel completely hopeless all the time without looking like one of those dumb emo kids.

But it almost is that bad. Being broke completely sucks. You work your ass off, or as much as you can manage while being a full-time student. You become obsessed with checking your bank accounts, you skip out on things because you can't afford it--what IS shopping?!?--and you refer to anyone who wears Ralph Lauren or carries a Coach bag as "those &%@$ing rich kids."

Now don't get me wrong. Plenty of other YAs (Young Adults) could look at me and my iPhone (that daddy pays for), my clothes (from AE), and my Penn State education (75% off!) and tell me to shut my yap. I am privileged, and I know it. I have some nice gear that facilitates the whole #firstworldproblems epidemic and overall, I'll be "okay."

But that's really all I'm ever going to be. Climbing the ecnomic "ladder" is more like Mount Kailash* here:

[I'm all right down here.]

Just by looking at all those things I have, you'd never know that a) I paid for the phone myself, and practically cleared out my savings for it, b) a lot of my name brand clothes are a surprising find at Goodwill, and c), that I've been steadily employed since I was 16. I bristle when I have to ask my parents for help paying tuition.

I could complain about how unfair the economy is, and how high tuition is, and how I'll never be able to afford the high cost of living, and how I'll probably be working at Target after I graduate with a communications degree. I could, and I do. But the obvious remains--it won't really help anything along. I'm slowly turning into that thing we call an "adult" and gaining responsibilities every waking minute.

I'm not adjusting well. I've been digging my heels in and fighting it since middle school. I will tell you, it is one great losing battle, and it only sucks to go against it. That doesn't mean I've learned my lesson and am doing just makes you feel more left behind.

I apologize for my depressing rant, but these worries are just the tip of the iceberg for the average college student.

As if I'm the average college student, LOL.

*I had to google it. I had heard about it before, but I didn't know the actual name. Picture credit Wikipedia.

About last night...

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You may have noticed, last night there was a pretty big hockey game.

Now, I'm not much of a hockey connoisseur, but I can't help but notice it when I'm in western Pennsylvania. (I consciously ignore football as much as possible.)

I like sports. But I'm mainly a baseball fan--more specifically, a Philadelphia fan. That, right off the bat (ha ha!) causes some problems at Penn State Beaver. Everyone here is a Pittsburgh fan, no matter what. Live and die by Pittsburgh sports. (Except the Pirates. Apparently no one likes them here.)

So you can imagine my glee at the results of Game 1 of the series between the Flyers and the Pens last night. I probably couldn't name five Flyers off the top of my head (Jagr, Giroux, Talbot, Bryzgalov...Pronger? Two of those are former Penguins anyway!) but I know a lot of players on the Pens, and I know how much the city of Pittsburgh loves their Golden Boy.

Being a Philadelphia fan 330 miles away from any of the home games can be tough. Obviously, people immediately judge you based on where you come from, and which teams you root for. I feel like that has been the only really...ethnocentric thing I've encountered since coming to school here. Sports are a big deal out here.

I haven't said aloud that I'm a Flyers fan, but I secretly root for them in my heart. They are part of the city I love and want to live in someday. Beaver county is my temporary home, and there is a lot I like about it. But I know I want to be back east soon.

Until then, I'll walk around campus wearing my Chase Utley jersey. Go Phils! Haha.

All-Campus Conference

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So, this past weekend, a few of my fellow Lion Ambassadors and I went to the All-Campus Conference at Penn State Altoona.

I can sum up the experience, for me, by saying that I just wasn't in the right frame of mind. Well, at least for a weekend where I had to positively represent Penn State Beaver. I was just in a bad mood all weekend--maybe I didn't get enough sleep, I don't know.

Either way, I didn't put on a good face for the beav, but I didn't warm up to Altoona either. Frankly, I kind of came across as a...well, you know. I wish I had a second shot at making the event a success for me, so that I could take something out of it.

Although it was an interesting trip and I'm glad I got to get off campus for the weekend, I found myself wanting to go back to my little bubble in Monaca as soon as we left. I was one of the older students from our branch on the trip. It made it difficult to relate to the freshmen and sophomores who maybe haven't had the experience of attending two very different campuses. That's another blog post for another day. Also, I'm set to graduate (fingers crossed) next spring, so sometimes I feel like the slate isn't so clean anymore.

One thing I did take away from the trip is that I'm content here in Monaca. Our students had a myriad of reactions to the larger campus (with a larger budget), but I'm not so sure they were always impressed. I think we felt a little overwhelmed by all the...STUFF they had. Keeping in mind, we didn't get to meet any professors or sit in on any classes. Maybe, just maybe, we weren't missing out. We've got some pretty great classes here.

It's been a tough journey to get to this place, but I am proud of my education at Penn State Beaver. I have yet to take advantage of all the opportunities I've been given here, but I'm glad that I have them.


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As per usual, when this time of the semester comes, I am completely swamped.

I don't have a particularly strenuous workload just yet, but I'm already under the impression that my senior year is going to be a little more intense. I take five (six-ish) classes this semester:

  • Graphic Applications in Print Communications
  • Public Relations Media and Methods
  • News Writing and Reporting
  • Planet Earth
  • Business and Professional Communication
  • Lion Ambassadors
For my news writing and reporting class, I'm also required to write articles for the campus newspaper, The Roar. For my applications in print communications class, I have to design The Roar.

So I've been pretty busy this semester.

It sucks now, because I started off the semester on the right foot. After Spring Break, I really kind of faltered in the quality and time management of my projects. This blog is a hefty example of an assignment that I'm lacking on.

My theory is that if I can survive April, I'll be home free and ready to break for the summer. My schedule doesn't look too bad for the fall. Yet.

My brain's just kind of been spewing a constant stream of expletives for the past couple weeks, and I'm pretty sure it's going to stay that way until May 4th rolls around.

Events at the Beav

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Since I came to Penn State Beaver in January 2011, I have kind of kept to myself. As a sophomore (4th semester) I didn't feel like I HAD to go to many events. After all, I went to Penn State Harrisburg for a year and a half, and part of their freshman orientation is making you attend a whole bunch of godforsaken events.

So obviously, I wasn't feeling the whole "Student Activities" side of living on campus. But this semester I got a job with the Student Development office. I'm making posters for every event that they sponsor on campus, and I put a lot of hard work into them. With all the time I spend hyping up each event, it's kind of important that I learn to participate--which was what I aimed to do with a job on campus.

Last friday, on March 16th, I went to a steel drum concert in the SUB auditorium. My floor's RA, Crystal, was a member of the band--which was conducted by her mother! I actually had a really good time, and I got to practice taking pictures for the Roar. Here's a video I took on my iPhone:

I just wanted to thank St. Luke's Steel Drum Band from coming to play for us at the Beav!

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