Greetings readers, and welcome to my blog! The purpose of this page is to offer insights into my life as a Saint Michael's student to people who may be interested in joining the ranks of our noble academic league. I've been here for almost seven months now . . . and do I consider myself a Purple Knight? Mumkin ("perhaps," in Arabic). Maybe not so much in the armor, but I can certainly say I've felt engaged on campus this week. Here are some of the things I've done that make me feel like I'm in the right place, and it's only Wednesday:
1. Appointments with the Research Librarians
This is a tool that was recently added to our Library's website- we have the ability to search for a librarian by specialty and schedule a one-on-one appointment just to help with research. Now that spring break is over, it's crunch time for term papers/housing assignments/fall registration . . . it's all rather stressful. I have major papers due in British Literature II, Old Testament, and Anthropology, all due at the end of the semester which is quickly approaching. Meeting with the librarians not only helped me access resources, but also made me take the time out to do research that I might have otherwise put off. This is yet another tool available on campus to help us succeed (I promise I'm not just promoting the library- it's really great!)
2. Recommendations from Professors and Employers
Early this week I landed a job working in Technical Services at a college library near my house for the summer. Not only does it have the ideal schedule, but it also is in a field that I love. The woman who interviewed me told me that I had received "glowing" recommendations from all my references, which included my professor from last semester and current English advisor as well as my boss in Interlibrary Loans. One of the best things about Saint Mike's size is that our professors really get to know us, even after one semester, at a level where they can give a genuine personal recommendation on our behalf. I've had the opportunity already to form these valuable relationships, and to gain experience at a work study job that is completely relevant to a career that I might pursue after graduation (not to mention, I made my resume for this job at a workshop through Career Services!).
3. Open classes and Dialogue
One of my main interests is in studying Islam and finding opportunities for dialogue between Western culture and the Middle East. On Monday I attended an open Peace and Justice seminar which hosted Professor Saleem Ali, a native of Pakistan and a member of the Environmental Studies Department at UVM, who came to talk to us about Peace-building and Islam. His talk offered a basic foundation for the sources of extremism and how he believes the Muslim community, alongside the rest of the world, needs to overcome them. After hearing his perspective I feel not only more informed, but also more encouraged that through education and dialogue peace is possible.
Well, I hope you enjoyed my first post. It's no longer Wednesday, but Thursday, and I must head to bed. As I figure out this blogging conundrum, I hope that you'll bear with me and ask questions that can help me help you make this ever-so-important decision to step into the Saint Mike's suit of armor . . . or t-shirt. If I were you I'd go for the bumper sticker.