Tag: skills

“Aca-knowledging Little Victories” by Grace Kearns

If you found yourself on the second floor of Trabant Student Center on any Tuesday evening, you would think you had just wandered onto Barden University’s campus by mistake. In the cinematic masterpiece that is Pitch Perfect (2012), Barden University is home to four collegiate a Cappella groups. UD just so happens to one-up Barden with eight groups on our very own campus. 

As a first-year member of the MelUDees, I have yet to be in a Riff-Off or perform for the Obamas, and I (thankfully) have been spared from singing any horrendous mashups of “I Saw the Sign” and “Bulletproof.” However, to answer the question that all of my hometown friends and family first asked when I joined in September: yes, it is a lot like Pitch Perfect. I have lived some of the most iconic scenes in the movie, from the involvement fair, to performing gigs around campus, and even hanging out with the other a Cappella groups. My most movie-like moment so far, though, was competing in the International Championship for Collegiate a Cappella (ICCAs) last month.  Continue reading

“Women in STEM: Experiences of Fellow Blue Hens” by Alex Stone

It is officially March—the time of the year when the weather starts to get warmer, the days start to get longer, and the semester starts to get busier. March is also Women’s History Month, and on March 8th, we celebrated International Women’s Day!

In years prior, I didn’t give Women’s History Month too much thought. March was simply another month that came and went. However, this year, I want to change that. I want to take some time to learn about women’s history as well as the lived experiences of women today. Specifically, I want to learn about the experiences of women in my life, which happen to mainly be women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). So, I set out to ask my fellow UD Honors College students, Hannah Bockius, a Junior Biomedical Engineering major, and Felicia Seybold, a Junior Applied Molecular Biology and Biotechnology major, about their experiences as women in STEM. Continue reading

“Electives: Off the Beaten Path” by Jenny Gloyd

Imagine you are in the photograph above. You are taking a hike on a beautiful day in Newark. The birds are chirping and the sun is dancing on the path in front of you. The best part about the hike is that the trail is a loop, so you don’t have to think too much about the direction in which you are going. Before you know it, you will end up back at the start. Deciding on a college major is, in its simplest sense, like this hike. Once you choose a major, let’s say a biochemistry major, for instance, there is a predetermined path to take in order to be handed your diploma. Each biochemistry major needs to take organic chemistry, calculus, metabolism, etc.

But if you hiked this trail often, you might wish that it wasn’t so straightforward. Hiking in a loop does not leave much room for exploration or adventure. Indiana Jones trailed through the rain forest and needed a bit more direction than, “follow the dirt path in front of you.” In a similar sense, having every student take the exact same set of courses doesn’t feed this sense of adventure. At UD, we have fortunately accounted for this inclination. The College of Arts and Sciences, the Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, and the College of Engineering, like the rest of the colleges at the University of Delaware, all require breadth courses. In fact, at almost any university, students are expected to take classes that are off the beaten path. 

From theater, to studio art, to economics, to math, you may not cross paths with these subjects if it weren’t for this requirement. These classes may prompt you to pick up a minor. Maybe you really enjoy modern dance or public health. Or, it may reaffirm that you are going down the correct path (don’t worry, that C- in philosophy won’t count towards your major GPA). Regardless of what part of your college career these classes contribute to, they will provide you with experiences that you might not have had otherwise. 

I learned that I had a passion for singing because of an elective in high school, and this colored my choice of breadth courses in college. I personally have gravitated towards classes in language and music, taking history of rock, choir, and linguistics. Although it’s entirely possible that another biochemistry major has taken history of rock or linguistics at some point, all of these classes were ones that biochemistry majors don’t particularly need in their career-oriented skill set. The major takeaway here is certainly not that every chemistry major needs to develop a keen sense of music or language, but rather that they should  experience a broader variety of what is out there is to learn. 

A professor of mine once leveled with their class: “I know this is not a subject that you may care about, but many others care about it. So, please give me 30 minutes to explain this perspective.” The class was, of course, absolutely happy to listen to the lecture. I think we all understood that even if it was not our core interest, it was an invaluable experience to learn something that was not in our expertise. 

So, next time you are hiking and you see an overlook, or a tree to climb, spend some time climbing that tree, or paying special attention to the view of the forest. In other words, if you see a class you might like to take, but it’s out of your comfort zone, take the chance–you might learn something that you’ll carry with you forever.

“Being An Undergraduate TA” by Chris Hope

Last spring, I was approached by one of my professors who suggested that I apply to be a UTA–an undergraduate teaching assistant. It has been a wonderful opportunity, and despite any extra work that I might have to do for the position, I am happy to have this experience under my belt. But how exactly did I get the position? What work do I have to do? What are the helpful experiences that I (and you!) can get from something like this? Continue reading

“A Recipe for Success” by Jenny Gloyd

Food truly brings people together. I have fond memories of cooking with my family when I was younger. During the holidays, we would make thin sugar cookies with a single almond in the center called sand tarts. On any occasion, we would roll out some pre-made pizza dough as best we could, and load it with tons of toppings.

In continuation with family traditions, my roommates and I host dinners occasionally for our friends. A few Fridays ago, we invited them over to eat and catch up, and it gave us a chance to wind down from the week and to eat some delicious food together. The menu: meatloaf and mac n’ cheese. I realize the choice of meatloaf is somewhat controversial, but I promise it’s a good recipe (I’ll let you know how it goes over). Everyone invited contributed a side, a drink, or a dessert, and we ended up with a really amazing spread. Continue reading

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