186 South College

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

“How I (Try To) Reduce Stress in College” by Lorraine Capenos

Everyone in college knows how stressful it can be. Between demanding classes, financial matters, maintaining a social life, participating in clubs and activities, being a part of Greek life, and trying to stay healthy, I often find myself overwhelmed, stressed, and wishing for more time in my day. However, I still try my best to remain positive and improve myself as much as possible. These are some of the things I do to maintain a healthy and positive mental space, as much as is practicable. Disclaimer: I do not always succeed in avoiding stress and practicing self-care activities like these every day. The point is to keep trying. Continue reading

Why is the Blue Hen UD’s Mascot? By Audrey Ostroski

It’s an unusual choice. Don’t you think? It’s not your typical Knights or Bulldogs. It’s unique and that’s precisely why I love it. My high school had a unique mascot as well. We were the Pandas. What is it that causes these educational institutions to choose such obscure animals to represent them? Maybe it’s because they aren’t that obscure at all.

One would think that the reason why UD’s mascot is the Blue Hen is that it is Delaware’s state bird. But the Blue Hen became our state bird on April 14, 1939 and UD has been using it as a mascot since 1911. The university used it as a symbol before the state did. There must be another reason why UD chose this bird to represent it. The Blue Hen is not a recognized chicken breed, and it’s not native to Delaware. It’s not even native to the United States! So it’s not like someone saw a bunch of wild Blue Hens running around Delaware and then suggested that it be our mascot or state bird. Why would we pick an unrecognized, non-native animal to represent the university that represents the state? Doesn’t seem to make much sense – yet there is a reason.

There are a few explanations for the fame of the Blue Hen. They all go back to the Revolutionary War and a military captain named Jonathan Caldwell. Captain Caldwell was from Kent County, Delaware and bred a chicken known as the Kent County Blue Hen. These chickens were renowned for their ferocious fighting abilities back when cock fighting was legal in the US.  Captain Caldwell claimed that no other fighting chicken could compare to his Blue Hens. Captain Caldwell’s company of men were also renowned for their ferocity during battles against the English. Therefore, they became appropriately compared to Blue Hens. Some also say that the nickname stemmed from the fact that the soldiers used cock fights as entertainment during the war.

Knowing this information, the choice of the Blue Hen makes more sense. Of course, we would choose a vicious fighting machine to represent our students and sports teams. We want our students and sports teams, just like the men of Captain Caldwell’s company, to be known for their ferocity and persistence in pursuing greater knowledge and winning their games. The university has a small group of the birds on campus that they breed, and they have even started bringing three live Blue Hens to football games. “The Birdgade,” as they are affectionately known, consists of Private Poultry, Corporal Doodle-Doo, and Captain Cluckers. Their presence reminds us of our history and that we should uphold the Blue Hen reputation as we fight, fight, fight for Delaware!





For the Love of the Music by Emily Fudge

According to urban legend (mostly my mom), I have been humming, singing, dancing, and toe-tapping my way through life since I was but a small human. Not a single car ride would go by without me requesting my favorite cassette tape be popped into the car player; I wouldn’t be able to sleep unless the “lullaby tape” was played at night. My parents, both lovers and players of musical instruments, raised me and my siblings in a house full of song. We all play different instruments and no family dinner is complete without turning on our favorite radio station or picking out a CD to play. You probably won’t catch me on campus without some earbuds in ready to take on the day. Not to mention that walking to the beat of a good jam throughout campus can make me feel extremely important and like the star in my own music video. Anyone else? If not, please try it and let me know how I changed your life for the better.

I have been taking a music education class about incorporating the arts into a classroom. As a future educator, I am looking forward to being able to weave various forms of the arts into my lessons. The power of the arts is vast and wonderful. It is far reaching, and affects every single person in a different way. Music is so beautiful because, as some people say, it is the universal language. What words cannot express, song fulfills. The other day I witnessed yet again how music can enrich our lives. On Wednesday nights, UD’s chapter of Yes U Can hosts swim nights, where adults with limited mobility or disabilities work on rehabilitation in the pool. I volunteered to help out, and was paired with a woman that wasn’t really sure what she wanted to do. She seemed like she just wanted to get out of the pool – I don’t blame her, it’s pretty cold in there! After trying a couple of different exercises, we were having trouble getting into a good rhythm. Then, like the sound of angels from above, Fergie’s “Fergalicious” began playing over the loudspeakers. As a Zumba aficionado who had recently taken an “Aqua Zumba” class, I asked the woman I was working with if she wanted to dance. As soon as we started to exercise to the beat of the music, our moods both brightened. We were smiling, laughing, singing along, and ended up forgetting all about the cold pool water. She ended up leading an arm workout to the next song that played and I was sore for two days. I am constantly amazed at how something as simple and wonderful as a song can change a moment.

UD has an abundance of ways to feel the beat. The music department has an event almost every night, whether that be from a senior recital to a faculty jazz concert. Next time you’re looking for something to do, maybe check out your talented peers playing in the symphonic orchestra, band, and wind ensemble. I recently saw HTAC’s performance of Dogfight, where a cruel event in which Marines try to take the ugliest girl they can find to a bar turns into an unintended romance. Completely student run and produced, the RSO’s take on the show was both moving and hilarious, leaving many in tears after the first and second acts. They are putting on Pippin May 3, 4th, and 5th and I think you should definitely come. If not for the wonderfully talented cast and crew, check out the pit (of which yours truly is a part of). Not into showtunes? Tune into WVUD, UD’s student run radio station! All I ask of you is to take a moment to fill your life with music. It brings us together in adversity and celebration, and I think we can all better live and understand each other with the help of a song.


Image credit: http://debrahurd.blogspot.com/2015/08/bach-invention-art-painting-abstract.html?m=1

“My RAILE Experience” by Hayley Whiting

Are you interested in honing your leadership and communication skills? Are you thinking about the Resident Assistant position and want to learn more about it? Do you want to become more involved in your community? Then the RAILE (Resident Assistant Internship and Leadership Exploration) Program might be for you! I first joined RAILE back in September because I knew that I wanted to learn more about the RA position, since I was interested in applying. However, you don’t have to apply to the RA position if you do RAILE, and you don’t have to participate in RAILE to apply to be an RA. Additionally, the program has several levels of certification according to how many components you complete, so you can choose how involved you want to be. Also, each participant is assigned a RAILE mentor (an RA) for guidance who is a great resource for any RA or RAILE-related questions. Here are some of the RAILE components that I took part in that I really enjoyed!

Continue reading

Cold, Cold, and Still Cold by Liv Conlon

So why the heck is it STILL so cold out? We are just a week after spring break, and in the closing moments of March and beginning of April where, by all means, we should be shipping home the winter gear and opting for lighter jackets and short sleeves. Yet, a good portion of this week has been plagued with yet another snow storm.  Questions about our troubling weather patterns are being asked all around, and the New York Times attempts to give some insight as to what exactly is happening here in an article published earlier this winter, “Why So Cold? Climate Change May Be Part of the Answer”.

Not surprisingly, global warming has a lot to do with this global phenomenon.  The polar vortex, a frigid weather pattern normally isolated at the North Pole, has broken free and leaked out across the US, causing record breaking periods of cold temperature.  

While meteorologists can’t pinpoint the exact reasoning and process behind what makes this vortex move, climate change is a key factor in its displacement. The jet stream which keeps this vortex moving in a circle around the north point of the globe is weakening as global warming heats the rest of the world up. The weaker pull is probably the cause of movement, among other factors that influence day to day weather.

Hopefully the cold makes its way out in the next few weeks because, and I don’t know about you guys but, I am so over this campus doubling as an ice rink.  Fingers crossed for a few nicer days this week!




Fountain, Henry. “Why So Cold? Climate Change May Be Part of the Answer.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 3 Jan. 2018, www.nytimes.com/2018/01/03/climate/cold-climate-change.html.


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