Archive | March, 2011

Just Another Thursday at Meredith

31 Mar

Today was pretty busy for me!  I stayed up late last night and woke up early to study for an art history exam.  Art history is one of my favorite classes this semester, but it is also a very demanding course.  For each test we learn the title, stylistic period, artist, and date of many, many works of art and architecture.  It is challenging to memorize all of the material, but I absolutely love going to the lectures.  After that test, I helped to hang artwork in the rotunda of Johnson Hall for the student exhibition.  There are so many beautiful pieces!  This afternoon I took a nice, slow walk around the entire room to look at everything.

After that, I had a web design test; it seems that everything always happens all at once.  I think it went well, and I am very relieved to be done with it because now we only have to focus on our final project—designing our own website—from now until the end of the semester.  After web design, I had my graphic design class, and worked on tweaking some last details on my project before it is due next week.  Right now we’re designing a series of postage stamps!  It has been difficult, partly because the stamps are so small, and partly because I am not used to working with Illustrator, a graphic design software, very much.

After such a long day, I came back to my room just wanting to relax.  It was such a nice surprise when I found my suitemate cooking dinner for us!  She made the yummiest chicken and broccoli alfredo, and we had girl scout cookies for dessert (always a welcome addition to any meal!).  It was so sweet!  Now, I cannot wait for tomorrow!  I get to have a date with my fiancé and we’re going to my new favorite pizza place nearby.  Weekends are always welcome when you’re in college!

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27 Mar

One of the things I love about the honors program is the opportunity to attend cultural events, such as a play or ballet or symphony. Today we took a group trip to the North Carolina Museum of Art, which is conveniently located just around the corner from Meredith. In fact, there is a path the runs between them called the Green Way. We had planned on walking there together, but then it rained so we had to car pool instead. Anyway, we got to see the new exhibit, 30 Americans, which features the art work of 30 different African American artists. All of the art was very different, and I think my favorite pieces were photographs by Hank Willis. In this picture with the basketball and chain he is commenting on our commercial society, one which often exploits athletes for entertainment. I also especially enjoyed one of Willis’ other pieces, which gave a very personal glimpse into a family tragedy and a harsh look at materialism.

After returning from the museum, I was pretty tired. I had a long day out of town yesterday, and then went to my church early this morning. My roommate was also tired, so we went to the Meredith library, rented a movie, and brought it back to our room to watch. We ended up seeing Ever After, one of my favorites. Since I really do have a massive amount of work to do this week, as soon as the movie was over I went to the art building and worked in the photography lab for a while. Then, I came back to my room to study. This is definitely the most typical way I spend my time on any given night.

Friday night was also the Spring Formal! I didn’t go to it because I went to another event with my family on Saturday that required us to leave very early, so I didn’t want to be out too late the night before. But my roommate and her boyfriend went to it and had a wonderful time. Meredith has a Spring Formal every year, as well as the White Iris dance every year in the fall. It always seems like a lot of fun and, although I haven’t been able to go to either yet, hopefully next year I will be able to. There is always so much to do at Meredith!

Student Show and Korea

17 Mar

This week at school has been an adjustment after returning from spring break. Aside from school, there have been several other things going on that I’ve been doing. The Annual Juried Student Art Exhibition is this week, and I entered two projects in it. The show is held every year, and anyone can enter up to four pieces in it. After all of the entries are judged, several pieces of art are selected to hang in the Johnson Hall Rotunda and sometimes in other places around campus, too. I don’t know if any of my pieces are good enough but I thought that it couldn’t hurt to enter. Judging is tomorrow so I guess the results will be up soon! I’ve loved walking in the art building this week because of all the work hanging on the walls. It is so inspiring to see what others have been doing, and it also makes me excited to take other classes so that I can have the chance to work on similar projects soon!

Tonight I attended a lecture for my history class that was by an organization called LiNK, Liberty in North Korea. My class is History in the 20th Century, and we have been especially focused on studying Asian 20th century history, since that is often a weak area of knowledge. LiNK is an organization that helps rescue North Korean refugees and tonight several volunteers came and talked about their efforts. I am so glad I went because I learned a lot about a situation I was rather ignorant of before.

The main problem LiNK deals with is helping Korean refugees in China. Koreans are not allowed to leave the country, and the few who are able to escape the harsh conditions there and flee to China are only faced with more troubles when they arrive to “safety.” China does not recognize them as refugees, but considers them illegal immigrants and sends them back to Korea, where they face prison and execution as punishment for leaving. LiNK helps these refugees in China to come to the United States, find jobs, learn English. We watched several video clips of Korean refugees who have recently come to the United States through LiNK, and their stories were really heartbreaking. One nineteen year old boy had a sister who went to China to find better work, but his family never heard from her again. His father died from starvation, while his mother simply disappeared one day, and he has no idea what happened to her. Another woman left Korea in a business attempt to rise out of poverty, but was tricked and sold as a wife to a Chinese man. Thankfully, he ended up being very nice and they had a family together, but after a few years she was forced to leave them and flee to southeast Asia because she was not a Chinese citizen.

I’m glad I was able to learn about all of this tonight. There are several girls on campus who are trying to start a LiNK chapter here, and hope this lecture generated enough interest in it to form an official group. I’m glad Meredith hosts events to raise awareness about issues like this and that faculty also encourage this awareness.

Halfway

10 Mar

Today, I was just thinking that I am halfway through the last semester of my sophomore year, which means I am almost halfway through my college career!  There are so many exciting things to look forward to in the next few months.  First of all, there are lots of traditions coming up, like Tea for Two, a mother-daughter lunch and tea.  I also get to participate in Class Day this year, a day to celebrate our Big Sis’s who are graduating.  I really like that Meredith has the Big Sis/Little Sis program because my Big Sis has helped me a lot.  It’s so nice to have someone you know right away, and who you can ask questions when you have them.  And speaking of Big Sis’s, I get to be a Big Sis to one of the freshwomen coming to Meredith in the Fall.  In the Fall I’ll also get my onyx—the long-awaited symbol that I am officially a Meredith girl!

In addition to these fun traditions, I’m also looking forward to all of the classes I’ll get to take in the next two years.  Although I’ve enjoyed the courses I’ve taken so far, after this semester I will be finished with all of the general education requirements, which means I can focus on the classes for my major and minor.  The other day I was looking at the graphic design classes I have left to take and it made me so excited!  Typography, art history, graphic design, digital photography—I love art!  I have to take some honors classes, too.  I love the honors program because it gives you a lot of opportunities to enhance your education.  Part of the requirements is taking two colloquia courses—classes that are usually a combination of disciplines and on fun, interesting topics.  This semester, my suitemate is taking a CSI colloquia class and she loves it.  They’ve studied finger prints and blood splatters and cool stuff like that.  I’m not sure which colloquia I’ll take next semester, but I’m sure it will be a great class.  I’m very excited for all the fun things coming up in the next few months!

Spring Break, Helvetica, and Concertos

2 Mar

It is difficult to believe that we are already half-way through the semester and Spring Break is three short days away! Maybe it’s because I really love all of my classes this semester, but I do not feel like I’ve been in school for as long as I have. I suppose that is a good thing. I’ve had a pretty busy week—art history test, two art projects to turn in, and a photography midterm I’m studying to take tomorrow.

But despite all of the work, I still made time to do a few other things this weekend. On Friday night, AIGA had a graphic design pizza and movie night. We watched Helvetica, a movie about how Helvetica was developed, and also a look at a lot of famous designers from around the world. Yes, it is a movie about a font. My fiancé teased me because it is geeky and, yes, I know it is kind of a nerdy thing to watch, but it’s really interesting to someone who likes design. And the pizza was yummy, too.

On Saturday night I went to see the Raleigh Symphony Orchestra in Jones Auditorium with my suitemate. Two of our pianist friends won the annual concerto/aria competition and had the opportunity to perform with the orchestra. They looked and played beautifully, on the big stage with their lovely gowns, sitting at the grand piano with all the other instruments behind them. It was a treat to hear!