Search This Blog

Loading...

Friday, August 15, 2014

Theatre!


"How did you learn to be a woman?" "What does it mean to be a "good" girl?" These questions are framed from the understanding that the ways in which women have been socially conditioned to act in a patriarchal society are oppressive. I walked around the space pondering this question posed by the facilitator, exploring intellectually as well as with movement the ways in which I have been told what being a woman is and looks like. 

This summer I made my way into New York City to experience a theatre workshop known as Madalena, facilitated by Barbara Santos. The workshop was done through Theatre of the Oppressed New York City, which,


 creates theatre troupes with community members who face pressing social, economic, health, and human rights issues. The troupes create and perform plays based on real-life struggles, which engage diverse audiences in theatrical brainstorming - or Forum Theatre - to activate communities and creatively challenge systems of oppression. 

I walked in knowing no one, but understanding that we had all arrived here for a specific reason that had brought us together. Though that feeling doesn't readily elicit trust, it is a beginning point to be able to remind myself that we are here to explore these questions together. The focus was directed towards women in order to create a space where women can discuss and interact with the specific oppressions they face in different situations. 
This is meant to be a space where mutual trust can be upheld and re-valued; where women find ways to overcome feelings of guilt, shame, and competition; and where women can confront the silence that has historically hid fundamental topics. Therefore, Madalena groups seek to build up an environment of recognition, visibility and empowerment so that women can reflect about their own oppressions, exchange ideas and support each other in the struggle for new quests.
 Women's bodies and intellect have been historically hidden for centuries, yet they are the "marketing window for mass media," which represents only certain types of women- arguably unhealthy and unrealistic. This type of media representation in the United States is hurting young girls and women. 

Themes that continually came up throughout the workshop when we would engage in short improvisational sharings were, covering our mouth and faces with our hands,  shutting our legs tightly, the act of shaving our bodies, and lastly working out while also having to look pretty. These are pressures that these women experienced in their lives which came through during the theatre activities. What these themes tell me is that there are double standards, unrealistic pressure to look and act a certain way (for who?) on a daily basis. Also, with the theme of covering our mouths and faces, which can mean many things for different women, one that I personally identify with is not being able to speak up (especially in the presence of men) because we are told that our voices don't matter. This reflects incredibly visibly within politics as men are predominately deciding the rights of women. 

This exploration into what women's experiences are sheds light on how to engage in dialogue with women, as we all come with our own experiences, socially, culturally, personally and otherwise.  Using theatre is a powerful method to interact with and honor women's stories and feelings.  



We began this workshop with pinning up a canvas of the hand prints of all women who have done the workshop before us and  pinned this up in the room so that the women would be with us. We ended the workshop by adding our hand prints.

Barbara Santos
 "Madalena laboratory is an innovative theatrical and research experience that uses aesthetic elements, and it is directed to women only to create effective strategies that help overcome their oppressions and that promote gender equity. The beginning point is the female body, which was kept out of sight for centuries and is the marketing window for mass media nowadays. Madalena Laboratory explores taboos and highly sensitive social topics, using art to visualize concrete pathways to outdo injustice and to transform reality."

For my Master's thesis, I will be facilitating an intergenerational, interdisciplinary theatre workshop early this Fall for women. If you are interested in being a research participant, please contact me @ jiadevaia@prescott.edu. Our first informational meeting will be in September. 


Quotes used from:  Public Workshops   &   Theatre of the Oppressed NYC

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Long Story

With my job as a student admissions counselor at Prescott College, one of the questions I frequently ask people is "How did you find out about Prescott College?"

More often than not, the answer involves a chuckle and, "It's a long story."

I get it. I soooo get it. My long story involves three colleges, three majors, a high school job at a fast food place, near exile by my family, and an ex-boyfriend. Believe me, I epitomize the long story of "How does one find herself at Prescott College?"

I'm not alone, either. Ask anyone here how they got here. What were those teeny, tiny seemingly insignificant steps that led you to move your entire life and world to Prescott, Arizona? What happened in your 3-year gap year that brought you back to school? Who did you meet on that NOLS course, or Outward Bound expedition, that knew you would love this place so much? When did you realize that Business School wasn't anything that you'd imagined it to be, and you actually wanted to study Social Advocacy and Justice in a program where you're actually doing activist work?

It's not a matter of why you're here, but how you got here-- and what are you going to study, who are you going to meet that will enable you to grow, where are you going to go with your education?

Why? Everyone knows why you're here. You're here because you've realized that Prescott College is exactly where you need to be to accomplish your goals, and you know that it's the right place for you to do so. Why are you at Prescott College? Because you were meant to be here. That's what your long story boils down to, your answer to "How did you find out about Prescott College?"-- Somehow, a million factors led you to exactly where you needed to be.

Call it fate, call it the reason everything happens, whatever you would like-- it's why PC goes by "Education is a journey, not a destination," and it's why we believe that Life is a River.

Your long story doesn't stop when you get here-- it's likely not even the middle of your long story when you do. You have so much more that will happen during your time here and after that will define another long story of how you got to another place-- whether it be your dream job, your graduate school, or your life's work commemoration. But Prescott College will be a big part in any and all of those things, and the subsequent steps.

One of the most beautiful things about Prescott College is that I have met so many incredible people from all places in life with stories to tell, and that I feel like I am considered as one of those people, as well. I write this as there are just over two weeks before the new incoming students for this fall arrive to begin their educational journey at PC, and I'm very excited to meet them and hear their long stories.

"But really, how did you get here?"

-Steph Doss

Monday, July 14, 2014

A Weekend in Prescott, Arizona

This past week, my mom and brother came to Arizona for the first time ever, and spent the weekend with me in good ol' Prescott. I figured that a two-three day time frame is what many people visiting the area face, and so I created a quick weekend guide that (I think) hits some of the best places in Prescott! Of course, check out to see if we have any special events going on in town, as well as deals with accommodations, but I have heard great things from people who stay at the Motor Lodge or Heritage House, and there is a hostel in town for a lower cost option!

And please remember, that this is entirely based off of my opinions and experiences, so take it with a grain of salt, and pave your own path! 

Friday: 

8:00 AM -- Breakfast at Cupper's Coffee House on Cortez Street! If you're a coffee person like me, try out their cold brew, but if you like tea I highly recommend the Tibetan Chai.




8:45 AM -- Drove out to Thumb Butte (approx. 5-10 minutes from downtown) for the quintessential hike of Prescott. It's about an hour round trip I would say, and when you come up to the trail head you'll notice that there is a fork in the road. Truthfully, these are both ends of the trail, and the left one up is much steeper (i.e. initially difficult) than the right one, so it's really a pick your poison kind of thing! It's gorgeous from the top regardless though.




10:30 AM -- Headed to Prescott College (approx. 5 minutes from Thumb Butte) for a tour of the school. My family really hadn't seen it until my mom and brother came here, and I can honestly say they were head over heels for our campus, from the incredible amount of sustainable features to the level of activity going on, even in the summer time. (This part is especially important if you're a prospective student looking at this, because you can get a $250 Visit Grant for taking a tour, with the added bonus of falling in love with the school like I did.)


12:00 PM -- Lunch at the Crossroads Cafe! It's the dining option located on campus, and so it was an easy, convenient and yummy decision for us. 

1:00 PM -- Drove out to the Granite Dells (approx. 10-15 minutes from downtown), for the hike nicknamed "Below the Dam," that begins off of Granite Dells Road.   
I think doing this hike is the easiest way to convince anyone that Prescott is really, really rad. For whatever reason, I always kind of feel like a dinosaur there, just because there are these HUGE granite boulders towering everywhere and these little spurts of vegetation that grow between them. I don't know, it's just very Jurassic Park/Land Before Time to me, and I love it. As any 8 year old would be, my little brother was running ahead of us because of all his excitement. Both him and my mother said it was their favorite part of the trip.

As a fair warning, it is a longer hike, and so make sure you bring plenty of water, sunscreen and maybe a snack! It's not necessarily super strenuous, but it can be dexterously challenging at some parts, so just mind your footing. There are also tons and tons of bolted rock climbing routes set up in the area (many by the Prescott College instructor Kevin Keith), and so a stop at The Hike Shack or Manzanita Outfitters in town would be able to supply you with a guide to the routes, as well as trad climbing and bouldering in the area.

4:00 PM -- So after this massive hike, I dropped my family off at their hotel, and I went home, for all of us to take a quick shower and nap before dinner.

7:00 PM -- All refreshed, we walked to Taj Mahal on Montezuma Street for some exotic cuisine with a couple of my closest friends. The food there is some of the most delicious in town, and even my super picky brother couldn't resist trying some rice and chicken in sauce. I recommend the shrimp or fish masala with naan!

8:30 PM -- Walked back to my house for some evening tea and to recap the day we had. First day success, they loved it here!

Saturday:

7:30 AM -- Breakfast at Sweet Potato Cafe (approx. 5 minute drive from downtown), which if you don't try out their amazing sweet potato pancakes or sweet potato bread served with cinnamon butter, what's the point of going? This breakfast is quite filling, too!

8:30 AM -- We then parked in downtown, and did a morning walkabout the square, learning a little bit about the history and looking at the different shops. Most weekends in the summer there are art and craft vendors in the square, or some sort of special event! This summer, we celebrated the sesquicentennial of Prescott (150 year birthday), commemorated the anniversary of the 19 firefighters lost in the tragic Yarnell fire, and had several 4th of July parades during the same weekend as the World's Oldest Rodeo. We're a very proud and spirited town!

9:30 AM -- Next, we headed to the Yavapai College campus for the weekly farmer's market. During the winter, it is actually on the Prescott College campus. There are tons of local, organic produce sold by farmers, as well as many homemade jams and jelly, and for whatever reason, people love bringing their dogs to these kinds of things, so I was in heaven just petting everyone's pup. My mom got me this phenomenal pomegranate jelly made in Snowflake, AZ, which is really delicious with almond butter on a rice cake.

10:15 AM -- Drove to the Lynx Lake Ruins Trailhead (approx 15-20 minute drive from downtown). The entire Lynx Lake Recreation Area is gorgeous and has an incredible amount of trails for hiking, mountain biking, or horse riding, but I decided on this one for the educational aspect of the ruins. While to most it will look like a pile of rocks, it's actually just authentically the ruins of a nomadic tribe long ago that have never been touched. Another really awesome reason this short/easy hike (only 1.5 miles round trip) is worth it, is because at the top you get a beautiful view of the different water sheds coming together, as well as the various mountains and valleys that surround Prescott. We also did the neighboring trail, another short, beautiful hike through the riparian area.

(From a different time hiking the ruins trail, with friends. Pretty sure it was in February--check out the gorgeous weather!)
12:30 PM -- Since this was the last World Cup weekend and my mom and I are both futbol nuts, we had to find somewhere to watch the third place game, especially since my team (Netherlands) was in it. Cue Liquor Deli on Goodwin Street, which, despite its name, is a very family friendly place, where my little brother ate "the best chicken nuggets ever," and we spent a couple hours staring at a soccer screen and chatting with the employees about the upcoming final.

3:00 PM -- After a satisfying win by the Dutch, and lunch to boot, we decided to go on a nice mountain drive to the awesome town of Jerome (approx. 1 hour from Prescott). It's such a rad, artsy kind of place rich in mining history, and my mom loved it all. We spent some time just walking around and poking about the different shops, saw an old sliding jail and other historical elements left outside, and just enjoyed the afternoon there.

5:00 PM -- Then, I made an executive decision that they simply just had to SEE Sedona, because, well, it's Sedona and I had never seen anything so beautiful. But, it was getting late and by the time we would get there it would be close to 6, and then by the time we got back to Prescott it would be getting close to 8, and so we decided to just drive through. It was so worth it. The actual town of Sedona, Arizona is incredibly touristy and has capitalized on the hippie vibe deal too much, but even that cannot take away from the gorgeous-beyond-belief red rocks and spires that just surround and engulf you.

In my opinion, the best way to enjoy Sedona (or anywhere, really) is by hiking it, but we just didn't have time. We did stop at a trail head though, just to get some shots of the sunshine poking through the ominous thunder clouds rolling in.

7:30 PM -- Back in Prescott, we headed to The Raven (on Cortez Street) for dinner, where my exhausted brother ate a cheeseburger the size of his head, and my mom and I enjoyed some live music. Somehow The Raven always manages to have live music every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night without fail. We then parted ways for the last time, because they had a flight very early the next morning and needed to get down to Phoenix. They said they loved their time here, and were sure to come back.

And they have to because...

Sunday:

...they still haven't seen the Grand Canyon!

It's about a 3.5-4 hour drive from Prescott to the South Rim, and if you're feeling extra ambitious you can drive a bonus 4-5 hours to the North Rim, which will have less people but there and back you'll be in a car for basically an entire day. Either way, it's worth it.

With my best friend, almost a year ago, on the Bright Angel Trail in the Grand Canyon (South Rim). No editing done to this photo, it's really this beautiful.



So there ya go! If you ever pop into Prescott, Arizona for a weekend, I hope that you'll check out some of the places I mentioned on here! Every day I spend in this town, and state, I find new places and things to love, and I hope you will find that, too. 



--Steph Doss
(All pictures are mine.)

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Road Trippin'

This summer, I'll be spending the majority of my time here in Prescott, working and taking some online classes to knock out some pre-requisites. But I still need to go home and see my family (and get my car inspected in its home state of New Jersey), and so I'll be trekkin' across the amber fields of grain next week.

The first time around, I did a lot of planning and took what I believed to be the most direct route across the country, mostly because that's what Google Maps told me. (Though after the initial find of the route we strictly used my atlas.)

My best friend and I packed ourselves up and headed west, that Kerouac dream. We split up the drive into what should have been 6 days, but ended up being only 5. 

First day was brutal, because it was straight from Jersey, across the not so exciting Pennsylvania, and into southeastern Ohio. We were in West Virginia for just about the exact length of time necessary for us to play "Take Me Home, Country Roads" by John Denver, and obviously belt it right along.
...country roads, take me home / to the place I belong / West Virginia, mountain mama / take me home, country roads...
Obviously we had to play it. We didn't really see any mountains and we were on interstate 70 so we didn't even see any country roads but we did pass a huge Cabela's. That night we found ourselves nestled into a nice, mosquito-filled campsite in the Wayne National Forest in the Ohio countryside. 

The next day, we trekked through the rest of Ohio and into Indiana, where we found a huge waterfall and saw this insane woman jumping off it. And then, of course, we did it too. For the novelty, of course...
We found ourselves afterwards exhausted and so made our way into the Mark Twain National Forest. The next day was going to be a haul if we expected to be in Texas the following night!

...And a haul it was. Trekked through Illinois, making time to stop at the billboard-advertised "Home of Lincoln" only to find out we were tricked, and it was only Lincoln's stepmother's summer home when she was 20, or something like that. Feeling jipped of the experience, we made our way across the state and into Missouri. 

People, I'm so sorry if you're from Missouri, but there's a reason people refer to it as "Misery." It was a truly horrible experience from start to end in that state, starting with our decision to go to the Jesse James Wax Museum (literally the scariest place I've ever been, and it's not supposed to be), and then getting to our campsite that night only to see a cannibalistic raccoon killing a fellow raccoon and then carrying it home to its nest. That was the point where we decided to get the heck out of there, and drove until 2 AM into Oklahoma.

We found ourselves at a Walmart parking lot right by a set of train tracks. Big store parking lots are great for getting a short sleep in your car when it's too late to find a campsite, but when you're in Tornado Alley and there's a train going off next to you every hour, you probably won't be sleeping too well. 

When we woke up, we took our crusty eyes and weary bodies to the nearest fast food establishment for any kind of comforting nourishment to make us feel a little more human, and I saw my absolute favorite part of the trip: a real life bison. 

Now, people, bison are my favorite animals. Many call them buffalo, wrongly so, because true buffalo are only found in Asia, Africa, and parts of Europe. One of the gas stations we stopped at even had a few bison on the property and I got to get a lot closer! 

Anyway, after my freakout, we made our way into Texas. Ahh, good ol' Te-has. Our destination here was Palo Duro Canyon, the second largest canyon in the United States, but our true goal of our time in the state was to each get an authentic cowboy hat. 

Palo Duro Canyon is gorgeous, and arguably a better place to go in the summer than the Grand Canyon simply for the significantly smaller amounts of tourists, and the ability to car camp for cheap inside the canyon. 


 I saw my first cactus here, the first of an innumerable amount of many more... We were truly in the southwest!
After our night in the canyon, this is when things got serious. First of all, we had only a few hours to get our cowboy hats. Our searches the day before had given us much more trouble. Cowboy hats in Texas are super serious business, and so we were looking at ridiculous prices of $300+, as well as straw hats, wool hats, crossovers, different hat buckle meaning, different fits, different brands, hats made by country singers. 

Honestly we didn't care all that much, we just wanted cool hats to commemorate our experiences and the chance to say "Yeah I got this in Texas, it's pretty legit." In retrospect that's pretty lame, but I've changed a lot since then.. Anyway, we got 'em. For cheap, too, each of ours was less than $30 AND authentic wool. That's me on the left with my best friend Joe in our new hats. 

The other dilemma was that we were definitely going to go through New Mexico, but should we actually stop there? We even took a pointless detour to Santa Fe to see if it could convince us, but no. We wanted 'Zona, and we did not want to wait. So we drove from Amarillo, Texas to Prescott, Arizona in one day, a hearty 11 hour driving day alone, not counting our cowboy hat search, bathroom breaks and food breaks. 

But oh man, was it worth it. We made it into the state just in time for this vivid sunset view.



I was sold. I was so ready to start my life here. I fell in love with the state instantly. 

We ended up reaching Prescott at midnight on August 15. We had no where to stay and couldn't find a campsite, so once again we pseudo-slept in my car. It didn't matter. We were here, I was starting a new chapter, we were happy. 

And so now, I'm heading back east. I flew back for about a week over winter break, but I haven't really thought about driving back since I drove here. So much has changed, and I know I will never have the same beautiful experience as I did first time around. But this country is a magical place, and I plan on taking different routes this time to get there and back, and I'm excited to explore as much of it as I can while I get the chance to. 

--Steph Doss
All pictures are mine, except the screenshot of the Google Maps map. .

Monday, May 5, 2014

WEB Conference!

WEB stands for Women's Empowerment Breakthrough.

The girls of the 2014 WEB Conference!

What's WEB? In 2003, a group of students from Prescott College created a conference for teenage girls in response to high rates of teen pregnancy, sexual assault, and drug use among the young women in Yavapai county. Courtney Osterfelt helped the conference evolve in to Women's Empowerment Breakthrough, an organization that helps young women explore, define, and achieve their goals! WEB just recently celebrated its 11th birthday this year! 

This year's Annual WEB conference took place from April 17th-19th at Mingus Springs Camp on Mingus Mountain. Over fifty teenage girls and counselors came together to grow and learn about themselves, each other, and how they can make a difference in the world! For three days, the girls participated in team-building initiatives, fun recreational activities and their choice of workshops facilitated by local professional women and community members who volunteer their time and support to WEB. The workshops cover such topics as women’s health, using your voice, self-esteem and positive body-image, family dynamics, safe relationships, substance-abuse prevention, creative expression, leadership skills, sexual-assault awareness, self-defense, cultural diversity, breaking barriers, and even basic auto-mechanics.

Learning how to change oil!
Why WEB? The aim of the annual conference is to provide young women with the knowledge, community, and support that they need to gain self-confidence, develop their sense of self, and build community. WEB also strives to introduce the participants to a network of supportive women, educational activities, and resources to build confidence and develop leadership skills.

This year’s conference theme was “I Believe”. Two inspiring and nationally recognized female hip hop artists, Chalease and Olivia, provided a performance and workshop at the WEB conference this year. Both their performance and their workshop addressed self-expression, empowerment, and the importance of standing up for what you believe in. We also got to be a part of their premier music video about women’s empowerment for their song titled “I Believe." 
A group of Prescott College students volunteer as counselors for WEB every year. This year, I got to be a part of that group. The seven teenage girls who slept in my cabin were from two different middle schools in Yavapai county. They reminded me what it is like to transition into a teenager in this generation.. It's tough. I remember how harsh middle school and high school were for me. I wish we all could have had a program like WEB to empower us and help us meet other empowered women, too. I'm so glad WEB exists for these girls. I know that it is making a difference in their lives.

For more info, visit http://womensempowerment.wordpress.com/
Get involved! email WEB at womensempowerment@prescott.edu
or Courtney Osterfelt at costerfelt@prescott.edu

Jenna Trizzino

Thursday, April 24, 2014

BIKES GONE WILD!



At Prescott College, we've got a few sub-cultures going on here.

You've got the Cultural and Regional Studies people, continually and admirably fighting for justice against our warped societal expectations and judgments.

You've got the Environmental Science guys and gals, lovingly referred to by some as the "bio-nerds" (...and only here will you be able to learn about riparian areas and raptor habitats at a college party).



And then you've got the AE kiddos. The thrill-seeking future adventure educators that seem to be in constant motion, whether it be from activity to activity or location to location. This weekend, these folks as well as the active townies Prescott, Arizona will be dominating the 11th annual Whiskey Off-Road mountain bike races taking place in the Prescott National Forest.

If you've ever hiked/biked/horse rode through the Prescott National Forest's trails, climbed Thumb Butte, been to the Copper Basin Lookout, or even really just been through Prescott, Arizona, you know how freaking gorgeous the landscapes are here. As reported by Epic Rides, "While riding the Whiskey course...once in the forest, participants will experience technical fast single track, smooth fire roads, quality climbing and vistas that will leave them speechless."

Vistas like this....

Bouldered to the top of Thumb Butte this past fall, with my friend Orion!

Copper Basin Lookout one sunny morning in March!

Hopefully, views like these two won't be so speechless so as to distract from the real goal: the custom, commemorative Finishers' Pint Glass that is an homage to the namesake of the event, Prescott's very own Whiskey Row.

(But really, there's a pretty hefty cash prize, too. Here's how the prizes are split up.)

For those of us who are not so dexterous on a two wheeler bouncing up and down 135 degree angles of essentially just rock and cactus and maybe a pseudo-flat part in there somewhere (me), there's still the opportunity to revel in the mountain biking culture!

Events and vendors will be all around the closed-off downtown area all weekend, meaning DO NOT EVEN TRY TO DRIVE THROUGH! Seriously, you'll go nuts trying to navigate around the blocked off areas and people flooding in. Downtown Prescott's events are always like that. Your best bet is to find parking somewhere else and walk over, or if you're like me and live within walking distance (yet still use a car...) get your lazy bum up and about in the spirit of fitness and activity!

Here's the schedule of events, with tons of live music for all, kids activities during the day, and special offers for those 21 and over throughout the weekend!


...And to tie this right back in bicycles at Prescott College, we've got an awesome club on campus called HUB. HUB stands for Helping Understand Bicycles, and began as someone's senior project. Essentially, he gathered together all the abandoned bikes and bike parts he could find from police stations, junkyards, and the like, and rallied volunteers together to teach people how to build and fix their own bicycles, completely for free.

This program is still going on today, and I'm hoping that this weekend will inspire me and others to get into HUB and build a bike! You can get basically anywhere in Prescott on bicycle, and I, personally, feel wasteful (and underactive) using my car. Allegedly, you can build your own bike in two hours...

But hey, maybe y'all will see me next year, stumbling down the trails and sliding roughly into the finish line three hours after the rest of the crowd! I can dream...

--Steph Doss

(First and last pictures were found on Google, middle two are mine.)


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

What’s Your College Degree Worth?
Matt Seats




Graduation is approaching quickly for many at Prescott College (PC). Was it all worth it? What difference can that shiny new diploma make for you and your future? According to 2012 US labor statistics, it can mean a lot!

Those graduating with a Bachelor’s degree are likely to earn 1.6 times as much as they might have had they decided to skip college and go straight into the job market from high school. Those who earn a Master’s degree are likely to double the salary they would have gotten with only a high school diploma! Over the course of a lifetime, that can mean the difference between living check-to-check or owning your own home, or farm, or having money in the bank when you retire one day.

With a Master’s degree, you can expect to earn 1 million dollars more in your lifetime than if you only had a high school diploma – and nearly two million dollars more than if you had dropped out of high school! Starting to feel a little better about spending the time and money on college? You should. College isn’t a thing you spent money on that you’ll never see again. College is an investment in your future, a means to a more solid and stable income, choices. Your PC education has been a valuable exercise in interdisciplinary learning and applying what you learned to real-world situations.





So what is next? Some will leave school and head straight to work in the field that they have studied for the past four (or six – or more) years. Others will start their own businesses, or nonprofits, or move into charitable work for others. Some will return to school next semester for more advanced degrees, or begin teaching others the things they learned. And some…well, some just don’t know yet – and that’s ok!

Most PC grads have just completed 16-20 years of nonstop education. That is a HUGE achievement! It’s ok if post-graduation plans haven’t progressed beyond taking a week, or a month, or a year off to decompress and explore your options. You’ve earned it.

So go home, see family, visit friends, travel the country, or the world. Expand your horizons. Think about the things you might want to do in your future and try them on for size for a while. See if they “fit” or not. You have the tools to try out the things you love to do as a profession now. PC has prepared you to be a leader. So take control, be decisive, and never let anyone tell you that something can’t be done. You know better. Jump in and make a difference in the world! And know that your college degree has given you the power to create, and earn, a better future.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Eco League Exchange

The Eco League connects Prescott College with a consortium of six, small liberal arts institutions that all share similar missions and value systems based on environmental stewardship, social change, and educating students to build a sustainable future. 

Prescott College students rafting in the Southwest

The Eco League allows students to spend up to two nonconsecutive semesters of study at any of the five colleges, or in any of the international exchange programs offered by an Eco League college. The awesome part of this trade-off is that students can participate in Eco League without having to transfer out of their home school and into their exchange school. This means that students get to continue paying tuition to their home college! Lucky for us, Prescott College tuition is on the low-end of the other Eco League schools. Plus, we have great, sunny weather!



Besides Prescott College, the Eco League consists of:
College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine
Northland College in Ashland, Wisconsin
Alaska Pacific University in Anchorage, Alaska 
Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vermont
& the newest edition, Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Each of the six schools feature different academic strengths and tons of opportunities to travel abroad in short-term or semester-long study programs.

College of the Atlantic students on a day-trip in Maine

-JT

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Gravity of Reality

“To serve is beautiful, but only if it is done with joy and a whole heart and a free mind.”-Pearl Buck

 
I often think about this quote as I sit down every few weeks and plan my life out... which I have never done before. Alongside being a student at Prescott College as well as an student counselor for work study, I am also a full-time AmeriCorps member at Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters. When fellow AC members ask me how I manage fitting all of that into days that seem to get shorter as the sun stays out longer, I tend to stumble during my response. 

There are so many days that being a student worker is the biggest struggle, and I often find myself overwhelmed with menial tasks that if ignored, could present an accumulated catastrophic result of failed email follow ups, class readings left untouched, and bills still needing to be paid. There are many days where I find myself thinking about the completion of my year long AmeriCorps term, the quintessential light at the end of the tunnel, and how my time will be freed up to do the things I miss like rock climbing and photography. 

Then, after the coffee has kicked in and I can see the benefit of my work through my AC volunteer position, I know that I've made the right choice. When the description of my job transcends into a live being rather than an elevator pitch, I know that I am serving others in a way that I didn't realize was so important. I didn't know that even though this isn't my first pick of job descriptions, it has challenged me in ways that I know will only make me a better person, volunteer, employee, and leader. 

I realized that while I'm writing this, I only have 5 months left in my term of service, which makes me realize that there is no time to waste. 

AA

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Marching with a Movement

Marching with a Movement:  #2Million2Many



The day began with a group of Prescott College students adding bodies to an already energetic group,  for the march, The Trail to End Deportation, organized by Puente.  This is a three-day on-going march from April 2-5, that began from ICE Headquarters (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) in Phoenix, and goes on to Eloy where the march will be joined by many more at Eloy Detention Center. It is a 60-mile walk that publicizes the private suffering of families that have been separated by the ICE machine.  


We are marching for the end of deportations so that families can live without fear. So that children do not have to worry when they go to school that day that their mother, father, aunt, uncle, sister, brother will not be home when they come home. I am marching because I don't believe in borders, and because I believe that crossing the border doesn't equate being criminalized. I march with those who have been affected by the inhumane treatment of their loved ones by the people who work in the detention centers because I am an ally in fighting for human rights and justice. We are marching as an intergenerational group- some organizing since Vietnam, others children, and the rest in-between. We march to ask Obama to STOP DEPORTATIONS, because he has that power to stop separating families, yet he chooses not to. 

"While he [Obama] asks for unity, he continues to break our families apart; imprisoning relatives for months or years locked up at distances that make visits almost impossible." *


Those who marched in solidarity came from groups such as Unitarain Universalist Congregation of Phoenix, Progressive Democrats of America and other citizens. Prescott College students came from an undergraduate class, "History of Conflict in the Southwest" taught by Laura Campagna, and the Master's in Social Justice and Human Rights cohort class taught by Zoe Hammer. 





"We go on foot because this walk is a pilgrimage, a spiritual act, a prayer for our families. We make sacrifices to draw attention to our suffering, in a way that is rooted in our community’s traditions." 






We won't stop, until all deportations end, and those held in cages will be returned to their families. 

*Quotes taken from Puente Human Rights Movement/Facebook event page


~Jen Iadevaia