As many of my colleagues discussed in earlier posts, Bloomington definitely is a unique college town. There is a lot of tradition and great places to eat. I certainly have my favorite places to eat, which include Korean, Chinese, and burger restaurants! Continue reading
One word that describes my library experience at IU: INTERLIBRARY LOAN!
What is this mysterious word? One might hear it uttered by the librarians once in a while. But interlibrary loan (ILL) is a scholar’s and a casual reader’s best friend. So what the heck is interlibrary loan? Continue reading
I know lawyers and doctors (MD and PhDs) and public officials all from my time here at IU, but none are possibly as interesting as the vocalists I have met that are pursuing advanced degrees. Not only do you have the chance to attend Jacobs School of Music operas at The Musical Arts Center for discounted student pricing, but you get to see fellow graduate students showcase their hard work and talent on stage (as well as the musicians in the orchestra pit).
Operas are dynamic, fun, and exciting. It’s also a far more complex world than I originally thought. Imagine singing for 3+ hours! Imagine learning songs in French, German, or Italian! There are altos, tenors, baritones, counter tenors, sopranos and mezzo sopranos, contraltos, and bass baritones to name a few! I am no opera aficionado, but I absolutely love them and take advantage of every opportunity to attend a performance and learn more.
Just like attending your first IU basketball game, going to the Lil 500 race, playing cornhole (I never heard of this in Los Angeles), and experiencing the Taste of Bloomington– I think attending an opera (at least once) should be on everyone’s list. Who knows, you just might become a season ticket holder! After all, Jacobs School of Music is one of the most renowned in the nation.
Challenge yourself to try something new. The pressures of graduate school and perhaps living in a new area will force you to try new activities, utilize different study techniques, and step outside your comfort zone. I picked the IU Mini, a half marathon, to challenge myself during the first year of my doctoral program.
I am thankful for graduate student groups like the Black Graduate Student Association, because that is exactly the medium I used to
peer pressure contact and interest fellow graduate students to train and run the race with me. My listserv message was met with lots of interest from ladies in different programs and schools that were ready to tackle this challenge.
Some of these ladies are currently writing dissertations, while the others have graduated and moved away from Bloomington, but training through a snowy and icy winter for a spring half marathon has bonded us forever. Nothing like wearing ear warmers, running gloves, 2 pairs of warm tights, base layer shirts, fleece jacket, and warm socks to brave the 25°-30° weather for weekly long runs.
Here I am almost 3 years later and deep in the world of powerlifting and weighlifting, but something is telling me to try it again, perhaps train harder this time and improve my time. Truthfully speaking, I just want to run it so I can have a
cuter better picture at the finish line, because I actually hate dislike running (still waiting for that “runner’s high”), but I love working out with friends. Obviously I have time to decide, but it’s always in the back of my mind. The race is right here in town with plenty of undergraduates, graduate students, alumni, and community members running right next to you. Perhaps it’s time for another listserv message??
There are many things that I miss from home. I know that one thing that I always had fun doing which relieved my many stresses from my undergraduate life was bowling – at least once a month. I learned of bowling from my father because he was in a league that bowled once a week, and I took it up too. I bowled so much that I got my own bowling ball and bowling shoes (and I’d suggest getting bowling shoes no matter how much you bowl because you’ll probably bowl enough in a year to equal the rental for the shoes).
In Bloomington, Continue reading
I am a firm believer that sweatpants, a T-shirt and an assortment of sugary snacks can be a human’s best friends, but sometimes these need to be abandoned in favor of finding your social and professional niche within the IU community. While it sounds daunting, and not at all as easy as blasting through a marathon of Law and Order: SVU, it is an extremely important skill. I will, in full disclosure admit to not mastering this yet, but it is important to make connections for professional development, and for you own mental health; grad school is hard, and having a circle of people you can talk to can make the process easier. Continue reading
- A view of Oliver Winery’s backyard pond, which is a great picnic spot! Photo courtesy of www.tripadvisor.com
Yes. You read that right. Indiana has a wine trail. Indiana produces Continue reading
I can’t believe that I am 10 weeks into the semester already! Time flies by very quickly when I am jumping from one place to another at IU: work, class, homework and social activities. As a third-semester grad student, I am always surprised by how I am still struggling with my work-life balance. I can be a machine and keep working for hours. Yet, sometimes, I need to learn when to take a break. Fortunately, fall is a great time for breaks (and distractions). Fall is a time for Continue reading
The autumn is probably one of the best seasons to spend in Bloomington. With the crisp air, falling colored leaves, and smells of barbeque and tailgates, it brings to you the true college town atmosphere. Not only is Bloomington ranked as one of the best college towns in the U.S., but it should also be considered to be one of the best destinations for visitors and tourists.
With nearby Brown County, stroll the streets of Nashville, IN, shopping for antiques, boutiques, and goodies. Stop by The Big Woods Pizza and Brewing Co. for a local brew and pizza. This weekend, we had the Breakfast Pizza … biscuits and gravy with an omelet all in one! Mmmm …
Don’t forget the infamous Oliver Winery. An Indiana favorite has jazz festivals, outdoor seating, and fun activities for the whole family. They also have an outlet on the Square in downtown Bloomington.
Lastly, the city of Bloomington has cool boutiques and local restaurants to match your flare. Chose from “farm-to-table,” ethnic, and good “down home” Indiana and American fare!
Book your trip to visit IU today!
Fall is finally here in Bloomington! So far the season has brought the usual cooler temperatures, changing leaves, mid-term exams, and darker beers. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’m enjoying every bit of it. Fall is definitely my favorite season. I always found it paradoxical that as the leaves on the trees fall and much of the plant life fades, the students at Indiana University are just getting their feet under them, settling in, and discovering all the new wonders of Bloomington. It’s a strange juxtaposition how student life blossoms as much of the natural world fades and slows to prepare for winter.
It is an appropriate contrast however, given the wealth of opportunities that each new academic year brings. This is truly an exciting time of year when the outdoors is beckoning for us to enjoy it and new avenues of involvement, study, and leadership open up as we roll into a new school year. I was fortunate this past week to have to chance to meet several promising prospective students at the Getting You Into IU event hosted by the University Graduate School. Over the course of dinner at Uptown Cafe, I heard many inspiring stories from students across the country that truly touched me and for that I am grateful.
The tales that some students shared truly humanized some of the challenges that are faced by first-generation college students and highlighted the hard work that students across the country are putting in to set themselves up for success after their undergraduate studies. While they were thanking me for showing them around, I was bursting with thanks to each of them for inspiring me and renewing my enthusiasm for graduate school, helping others, and sharing stories and experiences with others. I am excited at the prospect of having some of these students join our ranks here as graduate students and wish all of them the best as they continue to consider their options for graduate school.