The Earth is Beautiful

One day I want to go to as many National Parks as I can.  Here is a list of the top five National Parks that everyone should think about going to.  Each national park has a unique landscape that will make each experience new and amazing.  This list is all based on my opinion that I gained from the two websites that I will list below.

  • Yosemite National Park which is located in California
    1. The park became famous by Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson being able to free climb the hardest rock climb on the planet because of the smooth granite wall.
    2. Located here is the highest waterfall in North America and world’s tallest granite monolith. Ralph Waldo Emerson said that the mountains here at Yosemite is “unmatched on the globe.”
    3. Glacier Point Road is a place trail that leads you to one of the most “spectacular vista in any national park.”
    4. These are what makes this National Park the number one park that you should put on your bucket list.
  • Yellowstone National Park which is located in Wyoming
    1. I went here with my family recently and was amazing how diverse the park is.
    2. There are mud pots, hot springs, geysers, canyon, and others located within the park.
    3. This is also the first piece of land to become a national park in the world.
    4. The park has one of the most famous landmark which is Old Faithful that is a geyser.
    5. There are about 67 species of animals that live here and specking from experiences you will be able to see a lot of wildlife with your own eyes.
  • Grand Canyon National Park which is located in Arizona
    1. This is the second most visited national park
    2. Not many people take the 9.3 mile hike down to the bottom because of how hard it is but the view gives you a whole new perspective of the canyon.
    3. The canyon is so vast and beautiful that this is a must-see view.
  • Channel Islands National Park which is located in California
    1. This park has unique wildlife and vegetation that you cannot see anywhere else.
      1. For example, island fox, island deer mouse, and yellow-blooming corepsis.
    2. Not many people visit this undeveloped island so the experience could be a very quiet and special.
  • Denali National Park which is located in Alaska
    1. This park has one of the best back-country hiking with the chance to see moose, caribou, sheep, wolf, and Toklat grizzlies.
    2. Your chance of seeing these animals are very high because this park offers the best chance at seeing them through the 92-mile strip.
    3. It is possible to go white-water rafting and climbing icy slopes.

 

Works Cited

http://www.fodors.com/trip-ideas/national-parks/news/photos/10-best-national-parks-to-visit-in-2015#

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/north-america/united-states/articles/Americas-20-best-national-parks/

When You Are Close to Giving Up

Don’t. Don’t give in. I know it is really easy for me to sit here behind a computer screen and tell you to not give up. I have no idea what you are going through. Not the faintest idea. I just know that life is always worth living. There is so much more to life than stressing over relationships, money, or just life in general.

My life as a college junior at the moment is absolutely insane. I don’t sleep. I hardly have time to eat. I am constantly running every which way, trying so hard to catch my breath. In comparison to other individual’s problems, my meager issues are nothing. It can always be worse.

My friend and coworker was in an accident last week, and is suffering immeasurably in a coma in the Intensive Care Unit of a hospital. Something that stuck with me was at my staff meeting last week for my job, my boss said after telling us more about my friend’s situation, “I know this is a hard time of year. I know all of you are stressed. But when you feel like it’s too much, just remember how much Jake* would want to trade your position for his.”

This really stuck with me. I know we all have different loads to bear and are constantly at different places in our lives, but just take a deep breath first. If that does not help, get help. Some situations cannot be eased by meditation. If it is a serious issue, definitely get help. Go to a teacher, parent or loved one. They are here to help you.

Some things are not supposed to be handled on our own. Never be afraid to ask for help, no matter the situation. Life is beautiful and so worth living. Never give up on that. If the future seems dim, reach out. There are so many hotlines, services and people who just plain care, available to help out. You are not alone and you will get through this.

Being a Member of a Local Sorority

Francesca “Flawless” Lanfranchi, a junior at Delaware Valley University, has been a member of the Delta Epsilon Beta sorority for almost two years now. She absolutely adores it and whether she knows it or not, she is one of the reasons that I ended up joining as well. She puts her whole heart into it and you can see how deeply she cares.

What made you want to join a sorority?

I wanted to join a sorority to meet new people and allow myself to go outside my comfort zone. I was very nervous about rushing originally because I did not know any of the girls, but I eventually realized that being in Delta Epsilon Beta was a perfect fit for me.

 

Did you always want to?

Yes, I have always wanted to join a sorority since high school, back in New Jersey. However, I knew nothing about Greek life at Delval and was originally unsure if I wanted to do it here.

 

What made you want to pick Delta Epsilon Beta out of all the Greek life at DelVal?

I felt an instant connection with the active sisters of the sorority. They were all very down to earth, friendly, and welcoming. I could see myself easily fitting in to this group of girls and decided not to look at any other Greek organizations.

 

What is your favorite part about being in a local chapter of a Greek organization, as opposed to a larger national one?

Being in a local chapter allows us more freedom. We are granted the opportunity to be able to truly make our sorority ours. We may be small, but we have all put in such time and energy into building our organization to getting bigger and better each semester.

Pictured here are some active members of Delta Epsilon Beta at Delaware Valley University’s Club and Organization Expo. Aren’t we cute?Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

What are the positions you hold within your sorority?

I am currently a fundraising chair, merchandise chair and sisterhood chair. Fundraising finds events where the sorority can raise money for itself or charitable causes. As a merchandise chair, I help pick out and design the merchandise we wear, whether it is sweatshirts, t-shirts, or whatever. On sisterhood, I am with other girls who try to come up with events to promote sisterly bonding. I am also the Vice President of Programming for the Inter-Greek Council, DelVal’s governing Greek organizational body.

 

What is your all time favorite memory in your sorority? Or top 3?

1.) Our formal held every spring semester, is always memorable because we can all dress up and spend time together just focusing on enjoying ourselves.

2.) Going on our sister retreat last year was also a great time because my sisters and I were able to come together in a non-stressful environment. We were given the opportunity to truly get to know each other and it brought u
s closer.

3.) Being a new member educator has become one of my favorite memories as well. Last spring, I helped teach the new member class what DEB stands for. They learned our history, our morals, and other things about Delta Epsilon Beta that the actives always hold dear. This was a great experience, because I was able to show the new girls why we consider the sorority so important and what we stand for. We have high expectations of each other and the organization that we put so much time into.

 

Would you do anything differently with your time in Delta Epsilon Beta?

No I would not.

 

What advice do you have for any potential new members of any small Greek organization? 

I advise them to not be nervous and come to meet us! It may be intimidating approaching a group of girls that you do not know, but we are all friendly and want to know you as well. The sorority provided me with forever friendships and leadership opportunities I would never have anticipated.

 

Do not be afraid to give Greek life a try! You may end up loving it.

Aggie’s Football Victory Over FDU-Florham

The Delaware Valley Aggie’s football team looked strong this weekend after they lost to Stevenson College last weekend. Delaware Valley put up 50 points against FDU-Florham with 22 of those points coming in the first 13 minutes of the game.

It was an all round good looking game for the Aggie’s. Sammy Mohr started the game off with a 62 yard kick return that set the Aggie’s up for an easy score and then a couple minutes later Mohr intercepted a pass from Florham’s quarterback. Sophomore quarterback for the Aggie’s Deshawn Darden only threw for 118 yards but put up three scores, and also had one touchdown and 69 yards rushing.

The Aggie’s now have a 6-2 overall record and a 5-2 record in the MAC. This was a big comeback for the Aggie’s coming back after a disappointing lost to Stevenson where they got shut out. It’s easy to hang your head after loses like that, but the Aggie’s know you have to clear the slate. It shows what kind of heart they have, and what kind of competitor they are. What makes Delaware Valley good is that they have a good offense but it doesn’t stop there. They have a good defense and specials behind their offense so they are good all round. It seems like every week their special teams makes it in the highlight real. This week it was Sammy Mohr on the 62 yard kick return, and Junior Safety Shawn Miller blocked a punt on special teams and Anthony Thomas ran it back for a touchdown for the Aggie’s.

This season is not over and Delaware Valley Aggie’s have all the tools to go far this season!

 

 

Freshman Year

This is an interview that I did with my little brother, Daniel, who is starting his freshman year at Seton Hall University.

What is your major? Do you have a minor?

My major is Accounting. I currently have no minor but plan on adding Information systems or computer science next semester.

I always joke that I am the only sibling that didn’t follow in our parent’s footsteps.  You went into accounting which was our mom and dad’s major and Katie, our sister, went to Rider University that both mom and dad went too.  So, I am the only one that does not have the same major or university.

How did you choose what you wanted to major/minor in?

I took courses about accounting/computer science in high school and really enjoyed them.

What is your favorite aspect of being at college?

I like the freedom given to students which helps them, hopefully, become more mature.

Haha, hopefully is the key word J  I agree that college gives you more freedom.  It gives you more responsibility to have better time management.  In the three years that I have been in college, I find my grades are better during field hickey season because I have better tie management while in season.

What is your favorite activity that you have done this semester?

The Pep Band practices or the play The learned ladies performed by Seton hall’s own students.

I know you really enjoyed marching band in high school so I am glad that you found a school that has a band!

How did you choose what college to go to?

I chose Seton Hall University because of the campus tours I took. They had a lot of enthusiasm towards helping me and they made me feel special.

What is your favorite class that you have this semester?

Microeconomics because the professor is so funny!  My favorite material wise is Business Information Systems

What do you hope to do after college?

Sit behind a desk, working for a firm or other big company.

I could never sit behind a desk all day!  That is one of the reasons that I want to become a park ranger.

What do you wish you knew before you started college?

I wished that I knew how to study better.

I feel like this is an important skill that should be taught in high school to help freshman college students.  I remember feeling the same way my freshman year and learned how I study best through trial and error.

What is your favorite part of the Pep Band?

Meeting new friends and of course playing music

I feel like that is one of the great aspects of joining a group right when you start college.  Meeting new people that share your same interests help the whole college experience a little less overwhelming.  I remember my freshman year, I relied on the upper class-men of the field hockey team to help me get through the freshman jitters.

What other clubs and organizations are you involved in or what others do you want to become involved in?

I worked with D.o.v.e or division of volunteer efforts and I am thinking about joining other various clubs.

I am excited that you were talking about joining Alpha Phi Omega because I am also in APO since freshman are required to complete a certain number of community service hours at your college.

Do you get along with your roommate?

Yes, we are both very quiet. However, that works very well for both of us. 🙂

I can definitely relate to this.  My roommate and I freshman year were and are very shy.  We are actually still roommates this year (our senior year).

 

siblings

I Realized Binge Drinking Is a Problem

This past week I had to do a research project for my writing classes. One thing that I realized after doing this research project is that, as much as I hate research projects, I always come out of it with a passion on the subject. This happens to me every time but I think it has taken till now for me to finally realize this.

My research project was on binge drinking. Now of course we all know binge drinking happens frequently, and we all know it is probably a bigger problem then what we make it. On that note though, binge drinking is a lot bigger deal than we make it!! Its like anything else, I know this is a problem, but it was not till I actually looked into the problem or faced it firsthand to realize, you know what, a lot of young kids are dying from this, and a lot face depression because of this epidemic. Over 60 percent of college students drink alcohol and about two out of three of that 60 percent say that they have participated in binge drinking. Why is this a problem? Well 1825 college students alone die annually to alcohol related deaths. In total, 88,000 people in the US die annually from alcohol related deaths.

Unless you are locked in a cage, binge drinking can make you a hazard to everyone around you. But even then, binge drinking can lead to suicide thoughts, anxiety, and even depression. So you really can’t escape the hazard that you are. Alcohol is extremely addictive, in fact alcohol is the number one used addictive substance used in the US. Whenever you binge drink, Dopamine is released in your brain telling your body you want more and more because it craves the feeling. So you have to things working against each other, your liver and the rest of your organs are telling you you’ve had enough, “please stop drinking!” But your brain, thanks to the Dopamine is telling you, “keep drinking, this feels so good, I need more!” In the long run, if your brain wins that argument, your organs, primarily your liver, will lose, and may even shut down.

I haven’t had a drink in a long long time, but after completing this research project I don’t see “drinking alcohol” in my agenda. The project was not fun, but the information I’ve taken out from this has been eye opening. This information will always be in my mind.

CLAIM NO. GCML.2015420511

In July of this year my Mom received a letter in the mail from someone named Ana Martinez. My Mom prepared and sent an email, to Mr. Martinez. I would have thought Ana was a woman’ name, not a man’s. For some reason I don’t know, Mom also decided to copy my sister, brother and I on this email and gave us no backstory. So we are part of the journey.

I researched Ana Martinez online and found out a person named the same is the Harrisburg NWC program coordinator and co-pastor of the First Spanish Christian Church of Harrisburg. Perhaps she meant to email him. How my Mom found his information and why he might deserve a letter from my Mom is a mystery… although I have the history of knowing my Mom and that her email might not have been directed to the correct person. There is a person named Ana Martinez at Buiten & Associates Insurance and she is her, not a him, and her email seems to be different than the one my Mom used. I was able to use the context clue of Bureau of Risk and Insurance Management (below). Regardless of this, Mom’s email said:

Dear Mr. Martinez:  The letter you sent to me regarding the accident on Cottman Ave. did not advise me about the reason you would not “Pursue” this matter.  I had been informed previously by the City of Philadelphia that this Ave. becomes “Township Line Rd.” outside of the city.  This incident happened where two lanes become one, and the roadway is painted with faded red lines!  I know nothing about the investigation and the reason why, as stated previously that you have laid the responsibility in my Lap to try and recover something from the home owner (if there is one?  I already stated that the City said it did not belong to them.  I am a 72 year old woman who has survived cancer 3 times, survived six surgeries, and am unable to do what you request.  It would be dangerous for me to knock on peoples’  doors in the area accusing them of owning the tree with the BRANCH that damaged my automobile.  I would like your Supervisor to  find a safer and better way to resolve this situation .  I need your help.  This happened near the City of Philadelphia in which I lived, taught school, worked at the voting, worded @ the voting, and lived  FOR FIFTY YEARS.  I am truly insulted by the way I am being treated by the Bureau of Risk and INSURANCE Management.  I would like a reply to my e-mail!  Please reply to mymom’semailaddress@aol.com asap!  Thank you for your past and present attention to this matter for a Senior Citizen of Philadelphia for 50 Great Years! 

I laughed out loud at how angry it was, and almost immediately dashed out a retort – this is my version of the way the email could have been written:

Dear Mr. Martinez
My email – here is what it says

The letter that you sent
Fills me with regret

I had a little accident
I am not sure what you meant

It happened right on Cottman
I saw them smoking pot, man

Now I am not sure what to do
Since in this matter you will not pursue

“Pursue” is what I mean so it shouldn’t be in quotes
I think the same applies to any “Township Line Roads.”

I live in Beaver Hill just outside of the city
As a driver I rely on other people’s pity

Two lanes become one and I was unprepared
So when the branch fell I got kind of scared

You’re trying to put the responsibility in my lap
I am a 72-year-old woman and I won’t take that crap

I survived cancer at least 3 times
And so far I have created a hundred thousand rhymes

Check it out – because I can swear to ya
I won’t be knocking on peoples’ doors in the area

A six surgery survivor, unable to do what you request
My Mother used to keep her a change purse against her breast

Your Supervisor can find a safer better way to resolve
A situation I need your help with revolves

Around my being a resident City of Philadelphia
I lived and taught school and enjoyed some decent health in a

Manner of speaking, get up off of your ass
FOR FIFTY YEARS I voted when I got out of a class

Teaching the kids that run our city now
I’m insulted by the way you discard me and how

My kids just stand idly by
So if you wouldn’t mind can you GIVE ME A REPLY?

 

 

 

Love you Mom!

 

 

V for Vendetta

I’ve read many graphic narratives in my college years. A graphic narrative is basically a grown up comic book. Some are non-fiction narratives, some are fictional but have political views, and yes, some are superhero themed. All of them have a moral, something for the reader to take away. The most impactful graphic narrative I’ve read during my college career was V for Vendetta. It’s a story of an anarchist during a time of harsh government. He leads a revolt of the people and inspires the nation to speak against the government regime. The plot twist here is that he is masked the entire time, you don’t know his identity. This story really stuck with me because it is a story of revolution against an unfair system. It is also a story of retribution. You find out during the story that the masked vigilante had been a prisoner of war of sorts and had been tortured and had his life taken away by the government. His revolt against the government is his way of fighting back. I’m a big fan of underdogs so the fact that someone who had everything taken was able to rise back up and fight was very inspirational. I feel like there’s also a really important lesson to remember in that as a group, we have power. Even with a government that seems to be holding all the cards, if everyone bands together, it is possible to take control and do what’s right. I mean hey, depending on which way this election goes we all my need to remember that… but I digress. Being a graphic narrative made V for Vendetta easier to follow and get into because graphic narratives are like reading a movie. With such a visual generation, I think that more stories should be told with graphics. It also breaks up text so there aren’t just long paragraphs. As someone who hates the paragraph at the beginning of every chapter that sets the scene, graphic narratives allow you to just see it. I understand that this may not be for everyone, but if you are visual like me, I recommend trying graphic narratives. Also, if you like a story of revolution and retribution, V for Vendetta is for you.

Some Fun Fruit Comparisons

The 5 main categories of clubs/activities on DelVal campus, what kind of fruit they would be and why. Because, why not?

Sports Teams- Bananas. Bananas are a major source of energy. College athletes are often very busy, on top of school and whatever clubs they’re in, they have practice, study halls, and games. They must be able to schedule their time well and therefore need energy.

Major Related Clubs- Apples. This one is a cliché but hear me out. Major related clubs help students in their classes and add to their core of knowledge (core, get it??). These clubs can also help students network so they can find grad schools and work after DelVal. Plus, who hasn’t heard the expression, giving a teacher an apple?

Greeks- Grapes. Greek societies are all about brotherhood and sisterhood. If you are in a fraternity or sorority, you are committed to the other people in your chapter and theoretically you are supposed to be closer to them than anyone else on campus. One could say that that greeks share the same vine… ok sorry, too far. Anyway, Grapes are known for coming in a bunch and since the greeks are so tight knit, I think it works.

Interest Related Clubs- Berries. Ok, I went a little vague on this fruit type, but it’s for good reason I promise. There are a ton of different types of berries and they all have a unique taste. There are so many different interest related clubs and they are so varied. Not much connects all of them except for the title “interest related.” Whether it’s rock climbing or small livestock, there is an interested club for anyone.

Governing Organizations- Pineapple. Pineapples have crowns. Governing organizations are in charge of the clubs under them and therefore wear the crown. Greeks are under Inter-Greek Council, clubs are under Inter-club Council, etc. There can be a stigma about governing organizations that they’re tough and harsh. This mostly comes from the fact that they give out money and make the rules. But just like a pineapple, governing organizations may have a tough exterior but are sweet on the inside. The people that run the governing organizations are typically very nice and just want what’s best for the school.

Aggies Lose Against Stevenson College

Delval football team was on the road this weekend to contend against Stevenson college who is ranked 14th in division III football and was 7-0 overall coming into this game. They knew it was not going to be an easy game but I don’t think any of us expected the outcome to be the way it was. Delval has averaged 39.3 points per game this year so for them to get shut out in this game was a real shocker. But in football, you always have to expect the unexpected.

Delval ended up losing the game 19-0, and it started off bad from the beginning. Stevenson marched the ball all the way down to the Aggies 2 yard line where they ended up turning the ball over on downs. The Aggies got the ball but things turned south when junior running back Devauntay Ellis had the ball stripped away by Stevenson. Stevenson scored a touchdown on that drive but missed the extra point making it 6-0.

The very next drive Aggies quarterback Dashawn Darden threw an interception to Stevensons Jimmy Laurer, where he returned it for a 38 yard touchdown making it 12-0. Stevenson later scored a touchdown in the fourth quarter putting a nail in the game and adding to their historic season.

Stevenson has never went 8-0 and for the Aggies this is their second loss. They are going to have to win their last three games if they want a shot at the playoffs. But more of a concern they are going to need to come up with a better offense of gameplan against their next opponent if they want any chance of winning. They could only muster out 114 total yards in Saturdays game 62 coming on the ground and 52 in the air.

It was a rough weekend for the Aggies football team but this season is not over and they have to continue to look ahead. As we all know anything is possible in the game of football, and the game has to be fought to the final whistle, and the season must be fought until the final bout!