Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Midterms Approaching

Midterms are approaching! I have a lot of studying to do this week because I have a midterm in Finite Saturday, and the final for my 8-week accounting course on Sunday. These two difficult tests fall in a short time frame so it is definitely going to be important for me to balance the time I spend between studying for both. This will be a challenge, but I’m motivated to do well.

I have set up a time to interview for my summer internship, and I will actually be traveling up to the company’s office in Indianapolis for it. I am glad that I will be able to see first-hand the work environment of the company, because I wouldn’t get a good feel for this otherwise, although I am hoping to work in Chicago for my internship! I will check back next week.

Posted by Rachel

Friday, February 17, 2012

Helpful Twitter Sites for IU Students

Everyone in life has a passion- something they can talk about for hours and hours and hours. I’m one of the few people who has many obsessions—from yearbooks to Sociological theories of crime, there are quite a few topics you shouldn’t start me on if you have to be somewhere soon. One of these topics is Twitter. I love Twitter. My friends, family, and life is basically on twitter. Why do I love Twitter so much? Twitter is a one stop shop for news, events, and resources that surround my interests, community, friends, and school. I don’t go on Twitter for purely social reasons, although I must admit “twitter banter” with my “besties” is “tots my fav”. I use Twitter as a way to keep up to date on everything that is important to me- here are seven of my favorite things/people to follow, and why:

@IUBloomington- this one is a little obvious- the Indiana University Bloomington twitter feed keeps me up to date on events and resources happening on campus. In addition to this, the twitter account definitely embodies the culture of IU- they post photos around campus, keep up to date with IU Athletics, and give current and future students a voice on their page by the re-tweet function.

@IUCareers- shameless marketing tidbit on my behalf, BUT this is the account for our Career Development Center. Part of my weekly duties is to construct tweets about our events, and resources. This includes employer information sessions, networking events, and exciting things going on in our office.

@monroe_alerts- I get this particular twitter accounts alerts sent to my phone- it keep me up to date with the weather that is going on in Monroe Co, which is always helpful. Particularly in the summer time, when there is a tornado warning

@IUStudentLegal- The campus Student Legal Services twitter feed is one of the most hilarious accounts I follow- their carefully crafted tweets incorporate their own personality as well as service information. I love to check in with their tweets around the holidays in particular!

@BBCBagel- This is one of my favorite places to eat in town—I love following them on Twitter because every day they tweet about which soups their stores will be serving! I also admire their frequent twitter banter with their customers and followers.

@IDSnews- What better way to keep up to date with what is going on throughout campus? There tweets incorporate links to their stories, so I can easily check in on what is happening in my campus and community.

@pizzax- In my opinion, not only is Pizza X on the front lines for pizza creation, but they also are a great example of social media marketing. They engage followers by marketing promotions, posting scavenger hunt pictures, and immersing themselves in the student culture of IU.

@Time- I have always loved Time magazine, and time articles. Sometimes on campus it is easy for me to feel like I’m in a bubble- and forget that there is life outside of Bloomington. Time helps ground me.

If I can leave you with one thought, let it be this--- Twitter is the future, create an account today.

Posted by Anne

Monday, February 13, 2012


This week during my “Breakfast Club” Thursday morning at the middle school, our discussion theme for the week was Schools. We decided to do an activity where we allowed the girls to construct photo collages by cutting out pictures from magazines. These pictures could illustrate any kind of pressure or stress they felt at school. This activity got me thinking—do we ever leave middle school?

Although each individual girl’s collage was unique to their own experience, there were a few recurring themes among the collages. One major one was body image—girls felt that there was the constant pressure to be thin, and have a certain type of body shape. Many cut out photos of models in bathing suits, or articles about dieting. Another major theme I noticed, I’m going to call “Pressure to fit a stereotyped experience”. Many of the girls felt pressure to go to a lot of parties, make sports teams, have certain groups of friends, have lots of dating experience, etc. They felt that somehow there was certain middle school experience they were supposed to have-- and if they didn’t fit into that mode, they were missing out.

After class, I went home and reflected a little bit about the themes that came out through the collages. I realized that if I were to make a collage of the pressures I feel, it would look very similar to the middle school girls’ collages. I still feel the pressure sometimes to lose weight, work out more, wear certain clothing, and present myself in ways that express the larger perceived notions of hyper femininity. And I’m twenty years old and I know better—I know that magazines lie, images are photo shopped, and the average women is not a size zero, a size two, or even a size four. I also sometimes get boggled down in the “college experience” I perceive I should be having—going to parties, getting a 4.0, or knowing exactly what I want to do when I graduate. Even though I know better—I know that there are 40,000+ students at IU, and 40,000+ different experiences to be lived-- there is not just one collective experience that I am missing out on. Despite the fact that I’m older and know better, I still struggle with the same types of issues at times.

It is easy to feel alone during adolescence—I can recall feeling as if everyone else had a secret manual on how to survive middle school except for me. It wasn’t until I started being honest with people, and breaking down my personal walls that I realized I wasn’t alone. Once I started talking about these pressures, I realized all around me, girls were going through the same experience. Although this didn’t necessarily take away those pressures, it did allow me to feel better about them.

It’s important to ease younger girl’s stresses about the pressures faced in a school environment, but it is also equally as important to admit as you get older, some of those pressures still remain. We’re all a little bit weird, and we’re all a little bit self-conscious about it. It’s a shared experience of growing up, and growing into yourself and your identity. Sometimes it’s not a solution that is needed, but rather just a conversation-- a verbal affirmation that your feelings are ‘normal’.

Posted by Anne

Results Attained

After a busy week of awaiting results, I am proud to say that I passed my accounting midterm and had a successful phone interview with the company I am pursuing a summer internship with! My score on my accounting midterm was lower than expected, and I found this was very common among my colleagues. The test is very tricky, so even if you think you did really well, chances are you probably didn’t do as well as you thought. I am glad I passed, and have decided continue on in the class for the remainder of the 8 weeks and work hard to prepare for my final exam, to hopefully come out with a good grade. I need to study harder than I ever have before in order to make the grade to get into Kelley, so I’m taking this challenge upon myself and toughing it out.

I was very satisfied with my phone interview this week. At the end of the interview, the 2 employers that spoke with me expressed to me that they are very interested in meeting with me in person for an interview. This means I passed through the phone screening and now have the opportunity to prove to them in a face-to-face interview why I deserve the internship. I am excited to do this because I’m passionate about the internship and really look forward to knowing my plans for this summer! I will check back next week!

Posted by Rachel

Monday, February 6, 2012

Back to Middle School

Last week, I went back to middle school. After I graduated 8th grade from Canton Charter Academy, I vowed I would never return to middle school, not even to say hi to my teachers, check in on my brothers, or attend school events. To say it bluntly, I hated middle school. I was an odd ball, picked on by some of my peers, alienated by others. I can remember the frequent feeling of dread and anxiety that would overcome me before each school day. Despite my emotional scars, I woke up at 6:30am last Thursday morning to be at Jackson Creek Middle School by 7:40am. Why? So glad you asked.

This semester I’m enrolled in a service learning class through the Psychology department, called the Psychology of Adolescent girls. In this course, two days a week we stay in the classroom, and discuss psychological changes girls face during adolescence. In addition, one day a week we have a field experience portion, in which we go to one of the local middle schools, and mentor a group of about ten girls. Each week has a theme, such as body image or relational aggression, which we discuss in an educational and empathetic framework.

I decided to take this class for three reasons-- to fulfill my final requirement for my Psychology minor, to serve and give back to the Bloomington community, and to understand my own middle school experience using the concept of the “Sociological Imagination”.

In probably every Sociology course I have taken, we have either read or discussed the concept of the “Sociological Imagination”, as coined by C Wright Mills. The Sociology Imagination is basically looking at the world through the intersections of biography and history-- examining how an event is perceived by an individual, through the lens of the social, historical, or psychological environment surrounding that event. Now that I’ve had a few years to process and analyze my own middle school experience, I’m ready to learn a little bit more about the external demands placed on adolescent girls that contributes to an often times troubling and tumultuous middle school experience.

I’m hoping by the end of this semester, this class gives me the framework to better understand my own experience of middle school. I hope I can use this perspective to mentor the girls I come into contact with, and motivate them to be strong, independent young women. After all, I barely survived middle school and turned out all right.

Posted by Anne