186 South College

grab your coffee, sit back and hang out with the UD Honors Program for a while

Anyone who knows me knows that at any given time, I am involved in 5 different extracurriculars—and usually at least two are some kind of leadership position. And odds are, at some point in your UD experience, you’ll also be in charge of an extracurricular or two, or at least significantly involved. And if you are in charge of an RSO, the odds are also that you will be taking the helm of a ship barely afloat, if not sinking—not every RSO has the stature and establishment of The Review or SCPAB. So how to get some wind in those sails?

In my time at UD, I’ve been a part of many organizations at various stages of progress. I’ve been a member of HenMUN, an established organization for which I simply had to do what I was told. I’ve started my own organization, trying to build an international affairs publication from the ground up. But this year, I became one of two student Vice Presidents for Phi Kappa Phi, a prestigious honor society that has lost its footing due to the flood of “fake” honor societies (you know the type—they spam you with emails for earning a decent GPA, and all they ask is $50-100). Unlike the other societies that have a home in your spam folder, Phi Kappa Phi and its cousin, Phi Beta Kappa, have proof of their legitimacy through scholarship for members and partnership with UD’s Honors Program.

The problem that I and my co-VP are trying to tackle is proving the society’s legitimacy and making it stand out. We will be following pretty standard rules for breathing life back into an organization, rules that can be applied to any RSO. This is because new recruits = life. This is why the following steps largely focus on attracting new members.

  1. Figure out what works, and expand on it. Of the members you currently have in the group, survey them. How did they find out about the club? What keeps them coming back? If most recruits come from Student Central, strengthen your presence there. If current members attend meetings because of events, hold more.
  2. Make the brand a familiar and recognizable one. This one is pretty straight forward. The Review has a strong base of recruits because it’s The Student Newspaper. Such stature can be mimicked. Get the organization name out there by posting flyers, holding highly public events, and asking current members to advertise.
  3. Get recognizable endorsement. Students are more likely to join an organization that looks legitimate. One way to do so is to contact the department heads/secretaries (the people who send out those emails to all students in your major) related to your organization, asking them to advertise your interest meetings or other events.
  4. Have fun. Another way to recruit is to make sure your current members are loyal to the organization. The more loyal the members, the more they will advertise the club simply by being enthusiastic. One way to foster loyalty is to have fun. Take them to Brewed Awakenings to chat. Make them excited about the RSO.

That last one may be most important, not just for a successful RSO, but for you. Make sure you’re enjoying the work—have fun!

Meet the Editors: Anne Grae Martin

This summer I took a dive into something I hadn’t done in a while: cheese making. A turophile (cheese lover) myself, I was anxious to get back to cheese making. Growing up, my dad always made mozzarella and cheddar. I liked the mozzarella better because it was immediate (cheddar has to be aged at least 6 months AKA too long for little me). But recently I’ve been seeing Ricotta Crostini on Instagram and Pinterest and I’ve been anxious to try it. It turns out making ricotta is almost as easy as mozzarella!

To make ricotta, you get a gallon of whole milk, mix in citric acid & salt, heat it to 195°, stir it until the curds and whey separate, ladle out the curds, and drain them in a cheese cloth. Considering how delicious the homemade ricotta was, it was a very simple process. It really is amazing to see how just a gallon of milk can transform so much. It’s such a weird process and it’s honestly a miracle cheese was ever invented. Legend has it that ancient merchants stored milk in animal stomachs while they traversed across the desert. The mixture of the rennet and the heat curdled the milk and made delicious cheese!

So! Making the Crostini! We went to Wegmans to get a baguette. While they do sell premade crostini, I wanted to make my own. To do so I got a baguette, cut it into little half inch slices, glazed them with olive oil, and toasted them for about 4 minutes. 4 minutes was enough to get the edges nice and golden but keep the center crispy. Another way I’ve made these before is mixing in a clove or two of garlic with the olive oil. If I were only doing the ricotta and tomato crostini, I would have done the garlic option. However, I wanted a sweet crostini option too. Garlic could complement the sweet honey well, but I wanted a purely sweet option. Using just olive oil gave me more options for what I was able to make.

I just love working with baguettes. I’ve tried a lot of baguettes and, honestly, Wegmans has one of the best ones I’ve had in a while. It’s not a real baguette unless it hurts the roof of your mouth. The inside of a baguette should be moist, light, and fluffy. The outside should be golden and painful. It is an art to perfect that crackly shell on the outside of a baguette.

While the crostini were toasting, I was preparing for the next step. I knew I wanted to make a couple different kinds of ricotta crostini. I’ve seen versions with tomatoes and basil and I’ve seen versions with honey. Both of those sounded good to me. For the tomato basil I just went out to our garden and picked some little cherry tomatoes. They’re nice and a bit sweeter than grape tomatoes. While I was out in our garden, I also picked up some basil to chop up and pair with the tomatoes. I also picked some calendula flowers and onion blossoms. They don’t add too much flavor- I was mostly going for texture and color. My final stop in the garden was the thyme plant to get some sprigs of thyme for my honey mixture.

Back in the kitchen, I mixed together the flower petals, thyme leaves, a little bit of salt, and honey. Now don’t add too much salt: a sprinkling will do well. What you’re trying to do is really accent the sweetness of the honey and the creaminess of the ricotta. Salt, when used appropriately, can be such a flavor enhancer. I usually add it to most things I make, but just be careful.

The final step was assembling all of my little crostini. I carefully put a little bit of ricotta on each one, then I topped each with either the tomatoes and basil or the honey mixture. This was just a sample activity for myself (everyone makes cheese when they’re bored, right?), but I learned a lot! As fancy as these look, they were pretty easy to do. Especially if you’re not making your own ricotta or crostini (but those were pretty easy too). So for my next dinner party, you can bet your bottom dollar that ricotta crostini will be on the menu under “appetizers.”

The Case for Learning a New Language in College

I’ve noticed—as I struggle through class participation and oral exams—that the people who most easily pick up the oral aspect of Japanese are the people who already know another language: for example, the bilingual girl from a Spanish-speaking background or the Chinese students who speak perfect English. Maybe it’s because their brains are already adapted to switching between languages. But I don’t know; I’m not a psychologist.

Sometimes I wonder if my own difficulties with speaking Japanese can be traced back to my high school education instead. I took Latin for six years before switching to Japanese at UD, a language virtually without an oral component. But I think my main problem is not learning any language from a young age.

At this point, I’m pushing through Japanese so I can just reach the rumored “breaking point” at which the skills involved in learning a language are perfected, and the only obstacle to fluency is not knowing enough vocabulary. Getting to that point will make it easier to learn more languages, so I can finally add Russian to my language repertoire.

But I’m convinced that if I knew a second language as a child, it would have been easier to pick up more. For this reason, I’m an advocate of elementary language education. However, barring a drastic transformation of the national education system, it seems like it’s on parents to educate their own children. For this reason, not only do I admire UD’s language requirement, I embrace it.

It may be difficult to learn a language in college. Sometimes it may not feel worth it. But there really isn’t a downside to more children being bilingual, and the easiest way to ensure it is to educate college-aged students to prepare them to become fluent in a second language. That way, they can speak both languages at home to teach their children to be bilingual. And knowing more than one language, especially in the United States, can open an infinite number of doors.

~Heather McAdams

Nights at the Theatre by Amanda Langell

Being the Broadway enthusiast that I am, I was ecstatic to find out the plays put on by the REP here at the University of Delaware are of equal caliber to the shows lining the streets of Manhattan. For a little over two weeks, the REP has been showcasing two plays at once: Red and The Things We Do For Love. The plays are wildly different; while one focuses on abstract messages of life through art, the other delves into the twisted feelings of love present in a three-story home. However, despite their contrasting tones and messages, both scripts are compelling, brilliantly executed, and effortlessly manage to captivate audiences.

Red highlights the relationship between Mark Rothko, a well-established artist, and his new employee, Ken, in a breathtakingly intimate performance in the Studio Theatre at the University of Delaware. The two characters battle through their individual ideas concerning art, life, and commercialism for ninety minutes with no intermission. It is an organic display of passion as principles of the past conflict and interchange with introductions to the new world of art. There are no overdramatic costumes, flaunty sets, or any other material objects that would take away the rawness of the performance. As an audience member, I felt every pulsating wave of emotion emitting from both actors on stage and left feeling inspired by the ideas presented throughout the show.

Two nights after, I attended The Things We Do For Love and braced myself for almost the complete opposite of Red. The show had the large audience laughing in shock at the copious amounts of humor and heart-warming moments among the characters all living in such close proximity. Very quickly, the friendships in the play become strained by budding romances that eventually turn the house into a toxic environment driven by sexual desires and abusive tendencies. The cleverness of the three-story set and the ways in which the actors filled the space with subtle humor made this play one of my favorites I’ve seen by the REP. Plus, I (unashamedly) automatically love anything with romance.

I will definitely be purchasing season tickets to the REP next semester because I cannot bear to miss any of these plays with these talented actors, designers, and directors. I highly recommend seeing any show offered by the REP because I can guarantee it will be expertly executed and completely enthralling. Red and The Things We Do For Love were the perfect two plays to end the year here at UD!

Self-Discovery in College by: Avery Beer

College is the first time in our lives where we are allowed endless freedom. For the first time in most of our lives this is the chapter of our lives where we are completely independent and have the capability to do literally anything with our lives, which is scary yet incredibly liberating. Many people will tell you that college is the best time of our lives for so many reasons, but I think many underestimate the emotional journey that many students undergo.

Along with this new independence and freedom comes a lot of soul-searching. Who do you want to be? What do you stand for? What are your special talents and quirks and more importantly, what would you like to do with them to better the world around you? At a large school like Delaware, we are constantly meeting new people and immersing ourselves in different experiences. There is a lot of pressure at this time in our lives to really discover our true selves. It is easy to get lost, it is easy to feel like your life is in shambles (when in reality, it is most definitely not), and it is easy to feel like you do not even know yourself. I have felt like this, as I am sure most people have, on numerous occasions, and to solve my unsettled feelings, I have a mental list of things I can do to help myself clarify, reflect, and realize that I can do anything I set my mind to, so I figured I would share them!

1. Solo Adventures

Some hate being alone, and some love it. Regardless, going on adventures by yourself can really give you peace of mind that you didn’t even know you needed. I call my alone time my solo adventures, even if it just means walking to the get coffee or to the pharmacy and back. I highly recommend doing things by yourself sometimes in college to let ourselves breathe from the chaotic world.

2. Writing

This one is pretty self-explanatory, yet so many people loathe putting their words on paper (or on a computer). I understand why people would hate writing for school, but writing things down for yourself is so therapeutic. You aren’t being graded and you can literally write whatever you want… do it. Sometimes I find myself reading old things I’ve written about a specific incident or feeling that I had and it’s actually nice to look back on these things, good or bad.

3. Yoga

Many people cringe at this word. DISCLAIMER: contrary to popular belief, you do not need to be flexible for yoga. I think people have this confused. Yoga is whatever you make of it and the goal of yoga is to synchronize your mind, your body, and your breath. If your body is telling you to just lay on the mat, that can be yoga too! I started this beautiful art at a time in my life where I was feeling very anxious and although I do not do yoga everyday, it has taught me a lot about myself and it’s something I know I can always do. Plus, yoga clothes are cute!

4. Talking to people

I mean have a real, genuine conversation with someone. I understand it can be a bit awkward to just delve into a serious conversation with someone, but sometimes if you just start talking about whatever you are feeling, it will just flow and the next thing you know, you are gaining insight from whoever you’re talking to. The ability to speak to others is something we take for granted.. the power of human communication is one of the greatest of all because we are so intrinsically different and complex, yet we all influence each other. Plus, if you’re talking to someone who knows you well, they will really be able to help you with your unsettled feelings.

We all have our moments, especially in college. It is okay to be moving so fast and not even know which direction you’re going in… chances are there are thousands of people at school who feel the same way. When you’re feeling extra disoriented, extra emotional, or extra unsettled, take a deep breath and remind yourself that:

  1. You’re only human after all.
  2. You’re a blue hen, you’re the best breed of human there is!

~Avery Beer

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