#PIVOT #RayRay

The feeling that I have right now writing this pivot reflection is a weird one.  I feel happy to be graduating, but at the same time sad.  I feel excited about the future, but anxious about the unknown.  I look back on my college career and am filled with the happiest of memories, and feel extremely lucky to have spent the past four years here, and also lucky to have stumbled across the Minor in Writing.

it was I came to college, I really had no idea what I wanted to do.  I was stuck between what my parents thought I should do, what I wanted to do, and what I thought I should do.  Is what my parents think I should do also what I want?  What if I major in something completely useless and am left with little career options?  What if I pick something and end up hating it?  Well, now that I have the answers to all of these questions I realized that I worried for nothing.  I decided to go with Psychology, and its not what my parents necessairly thought I should do, but it’s what I wanted.  I figured out its not completely useless, and I have three interviews in the coming weeks.  And, I actually didn’t hate it!  My concentration is such a small part of my college experience, and I’ve found out that my minor has been more influential than my major. (That sounds odd).

I didn’t even know the Minor in Writing existed, but I’m so so glad I discovered it.  Well, I guess it was my dad. I was avoiding homework sophomore year by looking at Facebook, watching Netflix, and looking at other useless nonsense online when my dad called me and said, “Hey, you should check out this writing minor thing, it looks cool.”  I said, “Okay Dad, yeah sounds good I’m kinda busy I will call you later.”  I really wasn’t busy at all I just didn’t really feel like talking about future plans or any school related thing when I was already avoiding homework.  A few days later, I listened to my dad’s advice when our conversation popped into my head, and was pleasantly surprised.

I applied, thinking that I might not get in.  I didn’t really know much about it or how many people were applying, but all I know is that I’m lucky I was accepted.  The first day of the Gateway course was my 21st birthday.  Let’s just say, I was not feeling at my best.  But, I could tell that I was going to enjoy this class.  T Hetzel was amazing, and so excited for this journey to begin for our class.  Through completing the Why I Write essay, and doing the re-mediation, I learned so much within the first weeks.  I knew that I wasn’t going to be comfortable with sharing my writing in class, and I wanted to get over that.  I was self-conscious of others reading my personal thoughts, and at first I leaned away from asking for advice.  I would say my biggest accomplishment by the end of class was getting more comfortable seeking criticism, and actually using it to improve.  Taking suggestions from my peers was so valuable, and I wish I was more comfortable with it sooner.

This Capstone course was (Woah, past tense is making me feel sad…) definitely one of my favorite classes at Michigan.  I got to build on what I already knew, but I learned so much from Ray and the people in class.  I grew even more comfortable sharing my work, and with such intelligent, genuine people in class I realized that this was actually the best thing ever for my writing.  My classmates took a genuine interest in my writing, and I was inspired to put 100 percent into what I was writing about.  I learned to write with more honesty – meaning I would tell the whole story, even if it meant being vulnerable.  I learned to ask myself questions – maybe the answers I am looking for are really right in front of me.  I loved the beginning of each class when Ray would ask us a question.  The people that were strangers at the beginning of the semester are now friends, and I feel fortunate to have learned so much about their lives and aspirations.  If any of you guys are reading this, you are all awesome and I’m lucky to know such amazing people, and I have no doubt you will all go amazing places in life.  My favorite day of class was the last one.  Even though it was over, getting to listen to Ray talk about life was great.  His advice will stick with me, and I also know I will never forget the story of how he met his wife.  (Ray, that is seriously so cool.)  I will miss this class, and simply learning every day through the completion of my project and portfolio.

Now looking ahead…I’m very sad to be leaving this place.  I can’t imagine not waking up in Ann Arbor, walking to class, getting coffee on South U and running into my friends, and sitting at Charley’s on sunny afternoons.  I sometimes really think that life doesn’t get much better than it is now.  I’m surrounded by people I love and that have turned to family, in one of the greatest places in the world.   What could be better?  But, as much as I want to stay, I can’t imagine not moving on.  It’s time for the next step, and I will admit it will be pretty nice to not worry about exams, papers, and homework anymore.  I’m not exactly sure what the next step is yet, and the unknown scares me.  I have interviews in Chicago and in the Detroit area, and am excited about the possibilities.  Moving away from Ann Arbor means I will have it as a home to come back to, and be reminded of the best years of my life so far.  (Now I honestly feel like crying.)  The Minor in Writing is something that made my college experience what it was, and I am so thankful for everything I have learned, the people I’ve met, and the stories I will have to tell after graduation.

Top Ten

Hi everyone! Here is my top ten list of books to read!  They aren’t in order…that seems too difficult given my fried brain.

1. Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

2. The Age of Innocence – Edith Wharton

3. Harry Potter – particularly the first one.

4. Falling Up – Shel Silverstein

5. Where the Red Fern Grows

6. The Catcher in the Rye

7. The Fault in Our Stars – John Greene (CANNOT WAIT for the movie)

8.  The Perks of Being a Wallflower

9. The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank

10. Bridge to Terabithia

Making this list I realized many of these books I haven’t looked at in years, and now know what I’m going to do when I’m bored at home this summer continuing my job search.  (Woohoo!)

See you all at commencement! 🙂

 

The Opposite of Loneliness

http://yaledailynews.com/crosscampus/2012/05/27/keegan-the-opposite-of-loneliness/

 

This graduation speech written by Marina Keegan is probably one of my favorite things I’ve ever read.   I think her speech is something all of us can relate to.  She was honest, funny, and inspiring with her words.   WARNING:  If you are the sentimental type or are feeling particularly emotional today, you might cry.  I did.  My favorite part is when she mentions staying at the table after the check has been paid, or when she reminds us that we are still so young; we think we have to have it all figured out, but we don’t need to know everything yet. Good luck to everyone with finishing your projects!

 

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HELP! WordPress Struggles

Hi all!

I am in the process of finishing my portfolio so I can focus solely on my project, and I am needing help with formatting.  The tabs at the top, (Home, About Me, …etc.) are all squished to the left of the page, and I want them to be centered.  This is fixable by adding more tabs, but I don’t want to do that for the sake of clarity.

So, does anyone know of a code or something I can do to make them centered?  I am having some OCD about this because it’s not visually appealing.

Thank you!  Good luck with the last few weeks of the semester! (cue the freak-out).

Crunch Time #RayRay

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I’m currently in Beaver Creek, CO skiing with my family.  I have always known that while I ski, I do a lot of thinking, but I’ve realized that I’m doing more thinking than ever about life/school/graduation.  Oh, and our project.  With time running out on our time at Michigan and our time in Ray’s class I can’t help but feel like this project is the last big academic challenge of my life (at least for awhile).  Weird, right?  While it’s easy for me to think that I will not miss studying, or researching for a class, or completing assignments, part of me is starting to think that in 5 years (or maybe more like 10)  I will miss sitting in the library until 3AM with my friends working to finish papers and projects.  Maybe  I will miss the shitty Bert’s coffee or seeing how long I can really procrastinate before I literally HAVE to do something or I won’t get it done.  Or maybe I won’t miss these things at all.  Only time will tell.

In the spirit of our projects and maybe to add a little optimism to project deadline hanging over our heads, maybe we will miss this!  When else are we going to get to do research and talk to people and learn about something that we are super interested in and care about?  Unless you are going to grad school or get a job that you are obsessed with then this  time might not ever happen again.  This is the optimist in me talking, and you could be thinking I’m nuts.  If that’s the case…please accept my sincerest condolences on the fateful expiration of your ability to avoid reality.

Capstone Project #RayRay

I figured I should finally post my capstone project idea.  Better late than never, right?

My rough idea for this project started with combining my Psychology major with something I have always been interested in but have never written about.  I want to mesh or blend fashion, specifically focusing on personal style, with the labeling theory of psychology.  In summary, this theory addresses stereotypes and the “labels” we place on others.  The labeling theory suggests that these labels are negative and cause distress on the psyche of the labeled person.  I want to use personal style to show that embracing a label you give yourself, or the “label” in the literal sense that you wear can actually have positive effects on your state of mind, and give you a greater sense of self -confidence.  When I talk about style, I mean what/how a person would describe their outward appearance is or what it means to them based off of what they decide to wear every day.  While not everyone has a specific label for their style, I think that everyone does have something in mind when they get dressed in the morning.  What they choose says something about them.

The form would be a written component where I discuss this theory and the project process, along with a video of people I interview about their style.  If a video doesn’t work out (I’m not the most tech savvy) then I would make a blog or a photo essay accompanied by audio of the people I interview.

Thoughts?

Where Were You?

In the past 24 hours, I have not been able to take my eyes off of my TV, stop looking at my Twitter feed, or stop looking at news articles online.  What happened at the Boston Marathon is tragic, and it makes me so sad to think about the victims’ families and all of the innocent people that were hurt by the bombings.  They were just going about their day, enjoying a great event, and now their lives are most likely changed forever.  Last night, I was driving up to northern Michigan for the weekend with my parents, and we listened to Fox radio the whole 3 hour car ride.  The moment the reporter announced that they had captured the second suspect who was hiding in a boat in someone’s backyard, my family erupted in cheers.  It was comforting to know that our law enforcement is so hard working and diligent, and hopefully his capture will put those affected at ease.

This week got me thinking about similar events, such as September 11th, the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting, or the shooting at the movie theater in Colorado. I remember where I was when I heard of these events, and I knew that yesterday while I was driving  with my parents and heard they had captured the second subject, that would be one of those moments.  I will remember it for a long time.  In the coming days, I hope we all can find out more information about what happened as we try to make sense of something so senseless.

The Classic Mac vs. PC Debate

I am sitting here working on Project 3, and I have to say I have had some frustration.  My plan was to make an iMovie of photos with captions from my long form poem from Project 2.  Easier said than done.  The problem is…I am a PC person.

As I look around in most of my classes, there are MacBooks everywhere.  The little white apple with the chunk out of it circles most classrooms I sit in on campus.  There are different colors and different styles and even different models.  The original MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro; so many to choose from.  In the sea of MacBooks, my Sony VAIO stands out.  I love my laptop.  I grew up using a PC, and it is what I am most comfortable with.  When I went to college, all of my friends got MacBooks except for me.  Call me lame, but I love my Sony.

So that brings me to what I was first saying.  iMovie is a struggle for me.  I went to the Fishbowl to work on it, and my pictures would not upload.  So then I trekked all the way back to Hill Street where I live to try a different format.  Back to the Fishbowl and still no success.  I grabbed my friend to help me, and she couldn’t figure it out and she owns a MacBook.  So as much as I love my Sony, I am sitting here wondering if I am missing out on new media outlets that I just am not going to understand right away.  Will I switch to  a Mac for my next laptop?  I couldn’t stand to part with my PC….but Project 3 frustrations have made me think otherwise.

To the ‘Ship!

Melissa’s recent post got me thinking.  After last night’s win against Syracuse, my friends and I decided that we absolutely HAD to go to Atlanta to watch our team play in the National Championship.  Ten minutes after the game was over, we bought tickets and decided we were leaving at 5 AM the next day.  We were crazy not to take this opportunity that only comes around once in a lifetime.  We are young, in college, and have nothing holding us back from driving 11 hours to Atlanta and having a blast at the game.  We celebrated and then went to bed ready to get up and go.

This morning, we started reading the fine print about how we were going to pick up our tickets once we got to Georgia and figuring out logistics.  Sadly, we read the last sentence in a paragraph at the bottom of the web page saying we needed the credit card we bought the tickets with to pick them up.  That card is in Connecticut with my friend’s dad.  Oh no.  We spent the next hour desperately pleading with the people on the customer service line.  We could present a credit card with the same last name and a license with the same billing address that the credit card we used to purchase the tickets has.  That didn’t matter.  We NEEDED that card.  The Ticket Liquidator customer service guy crushed our dreams of potentially celebrating a National Championship in Atlanta.  Thanks a lot, dude.

We tried to make ourselves feel better by saying that we should probably stay here anyways and not get behind in school at the end of the semester, and we shouldn’t miss our classes.  Then, my classes for Monday were all cancelled.  THAT NEVER HAPPENS.  I was feeling sad that we aren’t going anymore, but then I realized something pretty great.  We will be in Ann Arbor, which actually might beat being in Atlanta.  We are going to be surrounded by all Michigan fans and if we win, I can’t think of a better place to be than South U or Charley’s or Pizza House.

It’s funny how things like what I just explained happen, and your plan can completely change in a second.  Either way, I am unbelievably excited to watch the game tomorrow, and plan on enjoying every second of it.

GO BLUE.

Just Kate, not Katie.

Kate Sanford is a 21 year old junior at the University of Michigan studying Psychology and Writing.  She is from Grand Blanc, Michigan and currently resides in Ann Arbor.   Her friends would describe her as a social butterfly who  loves meeting everyone she can.  Deemed the “unofficial therapist” among her friends, Kate likes to listen and give advice. A transfer student from Miami of Ohio, Kate just couldn’t leave “The Mitten” behind.  She is involved in her sorority and is a member of the U of M Alpine Ski Team. Kate enjoys being with her family and twin brother, and has had the same two best friends since kindergarten.  In her spare time, you can find Kate snow skiing, shopping, or traveling.  Kate loves sushi, sleeping in, summers in Northern Michigan, and Michigan football.  She has aspirations to one day live in the city of Chicago, and travel the world.