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Thursday, April 24, 2014


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


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. 


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

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Dancing at Prescott College

I couldn't possibly use words to try to describe what dance means to me. Movement is a language I've been fluent in for many years. In high school I studied the performing arts and developed a strong appreciation and admiration for artists of all forms. 

My relationship to dance has been a rocky one, though. I've found that some techniques can be so rigid and some teachers can be very harsh. Dance is hard on the body, hard on the mind. It really shook up my confidence as a teenage girl who often struggled with body image issues.

photo by Rosalie Whatley
As I walked out of the performing arts and walked into experiential and interdisciplinary learning at Prescott College, I really found myself craving dance. It's my outlet. My passion. Seriously. 

We're so lucky to have a healthy, thriving dance department here at PC. Block and semester classes like Nature and Dance, Dance and Improvisation, and Choreography in the Community are offered, plus there are a number of workshops (all free for PC students) so that we can get a taste of things like social dancing, contact improvisation, Butoh, and more! 

This all takes place at our Granite Performing Arts Center located at 218 N. Granite Street!

In my past two years here at Prescott College, I have come to see that I am an artist. Dance, music, drawing, writing. Art just makes sense to me. Until recently, I tried to suppress the artist out of me. I thought pursuing a career in art would mean that I would struggle financially for the rest of my life. I still feel apprehensive, but I know that I am learning useful skills that will help me when I graduate. Things like interpersonal communication skills, networking, highlighting my assets, finding ways to really express myself through different mediums. And! I've gotten to share my art with a lovely, supportive community of people here. 

Jenna Trizzino