June 15, 2010 - 11:45 PM
Seeing as this is my final blog, I wanted to say a few things about my experience and my year. I am currently sitting in my room, surrounded by a stack of boxes in an otherwise empty closet and nothing but a change of clothes and my computer left unpacked. My bed is the only thing left in my room, and all of my life possessions are crammed into my living room. Tomorrow I am moving back to Salem to take a little bit of time to relax and calm down before completely dedicating myself to a career.
I started out this year knowing it would be my last at the University. After three years of life changing experiences and learning, I knew that the final year would be even more amazing. And sure enough, it has been. This by far has been the best year of my life, and I cannot believe it is at an end already. Over this year, I completed 7 large group projects, including projects where I collaborated with real businesses in sports business world. Also this year, I completed two internships for the YMCA and MyEugene and held two jobs as a student blogger and a receptionist at the Lundquist College of Business Undergraduate Advising Office. Finally, I was a peer advisor for the business school and an active member of Alpha Kappa Psi. I have learned so much with every class and every experience, and am so fortunate to have had all of these opportunities. Through every point this year, I have met so many amazing people. My peers, group members, friends, professors, and colleges have all done so much to enhance my education here, and I hope to stay in contact with them all.
This blogging job has been such an amazing experience, and I am so glad I had the opportunity to share my experiences as a student here at the University of Oregon with all of you. There are so many great programs and services that make it campus feel less like a school and more like a home. I am so thankful for everyone who has made my dream of finishing college and of being a duck a reality.
This job has helped me discover my passion and love for blogging and online marketing, and has allowed me to experience and contribute to the social media campaign for the University. As a fairly private person, this blog has helped me to expand a little out of my comfort zone and become more open. The rewards of these challenges have been outstanding, and I have really enjoyed brainstorming and contemplating what I am going to share with you all next!
I truly believe in the slogan "Once a duck, always a duck", and know I will always carry a piece of the University of Oregon with me. Whether it is cheering for the ducks on the football field, sharing my business insights and wisdom to future business students, or simply puddle jumping when everyone else runs for their umbrella, I will always be an Oregon girl!
For those of you who are interested, I am going to continue blogging as I start the next chapter of my life and begin the career search. My new blog can be found at www.ksime.tumblr.com. Right now it is a work in progress, but I look forward to interacting with you all there! Thank you to everyone for a great year for all the support and love you have shown me!
June 15, 2010 - 12:30 PM
As last week came to a close, I realized it was my last week in here at the University of Oregon as an undergraduate student. The week started very hectic with three finals on Monday and one on Tuesday, but quickly my focus changed from books and studying to celebration and relaxation. It was nice to be able to have a long break between my finals and graduation to be able to hang out with my friends who I won't see for a while and to prepare for graduation.
On Sunday, my family hosted a graduation party for me. My mom, who is an amazing hostess, worked hard in the kitchen all weekend making homemade shredded beef sandwiches, salads, fruit trays, and peanut butter bars while my dad worked hard outside to make sure the yard looked good. We had so many friends and family come to our house, and it was great to see everyone and to know I have their support. Thank you to everyone who was able to make it!
Graduation was yesterday, and the day couldn't have gone any better. My entire family was in town, as well as my grandparents, my Aunt Mary and cousin Holly, and my Aunt Vicki and Uncle Dave. I had such an amazing support system and was glad everyone was able to come down to help me celebrate my big day. The business school graduation was at noon and was in Mac Court. As Dean Howard, the Dean of the Lundquist College of Business, began his address to us, he noted this could be one of the last big events to be held in Mac Court (since the fate of Mac Court is yet to be decided once Matt Court opens next year). For me, it was very special location to graduate. As a freshman, my first official ceremony as a duck was Convocation, which was also held at Mac Court. I started and ended my college career in the same building-a building with such a rich history and great duck spirit.
This entire year, it has seen so surreal that I am graduating. But as soon as I walked across that stage, said my name and major and blew a kiss to my family, I realized I am finally done with college! Dean Howard gave me my diploma, and suddenly all my hard work here was officially at an end.
After the graduation ceremony, I headed with my family to Lillis for a reception and to mingle with the other graduates. It was a great way to say goodbye to Lillis and the school I spent so much time in over the last four years. As my family mingled, I was able to say my goodbyes to some of my peers, professors, and the academic advisors I have spent so much time with. I think it goes without saying that the biggest thing I will miss about Oregon is the people!
As I said before, graduation couldn't have gone smoother or better! I am so lucky to have the support of my amazing family and friends!
June 6, 2010 - 11:30 PM
This last Thursday, I said goodbye to Alpha Kappa Psi and became an official alumni of the chapter. This was done through a formal ceremony that initiates all new members and graduates all the seniors.
Alpha Kappa Psi has been such an amazing experience for me. I rushed during the fall of my junior year and became an official member in the winter. Coming into the fraternity, I knew only one other member. Leaving the fraternity, I now know over 100 members who are either fellow alumni or current members. Alpha Kappa Psi has helped me in so many ways. Academically, Alpha Kappa Psi has helped me network with students in the business school and get to know people in all of my classes. This is really helpful when it comes time to study for finals or to work on group projects. Professionally, I have had the opportunity to practice my interviewing and networking skills, as well as gain hands on experience as a member of the Advertising and Marketing Committee and the Silent Auction Committee. I have worked to design fliers, bulletin boards, invitations, and helped to organize an event to raise over $1200 for the Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Valley. Through our weekly meetings, I have had the opportunity to meet some great professionals who have shared their advice and their experience in the working world. Some of our guest speakers have included advertising professionals, financial advisors, and CEOs. I have learned so much as I start to focus on my career search.
Probably the best part of Alpha Kappa Psi for me is the social aspect. Through this organization, I have met some of my best friends. Some of these friends (you all know who you are) have been with me through thick and thin. College is tough-there is no doubt about that. For the first time in your life, you are out on your own and struggling to balance your life socially, academically, and financially. You are completely on your own, and your friends are such an important part of your life. The friends I have met through Alpha Kappa Psi have been much more than the type of friends you hang out with when you are bored or that you study with, but instead are the kind of friends who come to my house for holidays and will eventually be in my wedding party.
I came into this organization simply wanted to add a line to my resume. Now two years later, it has been the best decision I ever made while in college. I would have never expected that three simple Greek letters could change my life the way Alpha Kappa Psi did. Thank you everyone who has been involved in this organization and given me the great experience that made my college career!
June 6, 2010 - 11:00 PM
This term, I have been working with MyEugene.org, a community driven local news site, to do a marketing and event planning internship. Today was the big event, where we officially launched the website and had a ton of great events! There was a communications panel, magician, two bands, arts and crafts with MECA, and free ice cream samples from Luna and Larry's, and a photo contest. It was an event that required about 6 weeks of preparation and a day full of work, but it was definitely worth it.
During the duration of the event, we had a total of over 230 people come through the doors. Everyone had a great time, and it was great to meet and interact with so many of the close followers of the website. The event was held at Cozmic Pizza, and during the bulk of the event it was hard to find an empty table. It was great to be able to work to put on an event that united the community and the close followers of MyEugene. All of the hard work was worth it, and I think we all agree the event was a success.
My job the day-of the event was to monitor the photo contest and to answer any questions as people voted for the winner on-site. We decided to integrate a new technology into the voting process and used a website that allowed users to vote via text message or via Twitter. As people came to vote, it was great to listen to some of the photographers talk about their photo and explain the story behind it. There were so many great photos (35 to be exact), and they all told an amazing story! Congrats to everyone who entered!
This has been such a great experience learning about marketing and data research. I have also learned a lot about what it takes to plan and promote a large event and how to overcome problems and obstacles that may come along with that. My boss, Jaculynn, has been absolutely amazing in helping us to learn the business and give us hands on experience in the field. She is the one-woman show behind MyEugene and put on an amazing event. When people would arrive and introduce themselves, she knew most of them through interaction either through Facebook or Twitter. She acts as much more as the director of MyEugene, and forms relationships with a majority of the followers and contributors to the site. She balances her time and energy so well to provide the city of Eugene with an excellent website about community news and happenings, and I know that the success of MyEugene will continue to grow. This term alone, we have almost doubled our average daily web traffic. Thank you to Jaculynn for giving me this great opportunity to learn about the public relations and event planning behind MyEugene. And thanks to the other PR interns, Joani and Hana, who worked super hard to help promote the website and the event. I will really miss working with this team.
May 31, 2010 - 11:45 PM
As graduation is approaching, there are so many things I am quickly realizing I will miss. The first and most important is all of the amazing people I have met while at Oregon. I have made some of my best friends over the past four years-friends I now consider family. There is something special about friends who come to your house for holidays, are available 24-7 if you ever need them, and who would do anything for you. I already know that a few of these friends will be in my wedding party when that time comes.
There is so much more I am going to miss about campus. Since campus has been my home for the last four years, I have so many memories that I will never forget. I know this campus like the back of my hand, and will really miss it. Here are some of my favorite places on campus that I know I will return to:
(1) Autzen Stadium: Although it is across the river from campus, this is probably the biggest Oregon landmark I will miss. So many of my Saturday afternoons have been spent at this stadium cheering on my ducks-sometimes in beautiful sunny weather and sometimes in the pouring down rain. I was at Autzen during the infamous Oklahoma-Oregon controversial on-side kick that lead to a last minute victory for the ducks. I was at Autzen when the God-like USC team was taken down from their thrown on Halloween night with a record setting 47-20 score. I was at Autzen when, for the first time in 15 years, Oregon became the Pac-10 champs and prepared for their trip to Pasadena to play in the Rose Bowl. I love Autzen stadium and I love my ducks! I know I will be back many more times to cheer on my team.
(2) Lillis Business Complex: Although many stressful evenings have occurred here, there have also been so many great memories that make Lillis one of my favorite places on campus. It is a beautiful building, and I am lucky to be able to call it my second home. In Lillis, I have learned and experienced so much about the business world. Every time I step foot in this building, I learn something new. I have overcome my fear of public speaking, completed and turned in more group projects and business plans than I can count, and attended my weekly Alpha Kappa Psi business meeting here. It will be a huge change not walking into this building every day after I graduate. I will really miss it.
(3) My Thoughtful Spot: There is a spot on campus that many people do not know about. It is tucked in behind Lawrence Hall near 11th Avenue and is a place I discovered within my first week of school. At this spot, there is a small bench surrounded by trees. It is usually very quiet and secluded, and a place where I often go when I need a moment or two to myself. As a child I really loved Winnie the Pooh, and therefore named this spot my Thoughtful Spot (after a theme in the books). College is very stressful, and I love having a spot where I can go without running into classmates, professors, roommates, or friends to reflect and relax for a few minutes.
(4) Rennie's: Rennie's is one of the few bars located right next to campus. Rennie's is by far my favorite, and I have spent many nights hanging out with my friends here. Rennie's is where I had my first (legal) drink on my 21st birthday, and since then has always been the go-to spot whenever my classmates and I finish a project (or a paper, or a final, or sometimes just finishing a Wednesday). And, unfortunately, where most of my disposable income has gone for the last year. If I were to have a bar "where everybody knows my name", this would be it.
(5) My first apartment: I lived in the dorms for the first two years here at the University (once as a freshman and once as a Resident Assistant). After that, I decided I needed to move out of the dorms and have my own apartment. My roommate and I have been here for two years. Since this was my first experience out on my own, it has been a huge learning experience. For example, lesson number one is always bring your keys with you when you leave the apartment. Lesson number two is to always do the dishes unless you want your apartment to smell like whatever you ate last night. Lesson number three is to not leave your hot water running when you leave the house (unless you want to deal with the $100 electric bill). I could go on for a very long time, but I think you get the point. Although this apartment has brought its fair share of stress (with fleas, mold, leaking ceilings, and broken windows), it will always be remembered as my first home!