Residence Life

My Freshman House Advisor was the first upperclass(wo)man I met last year. HAs promote Reed College student resources, help students in need of personal, academic, health, or mental health support, organize dorm outings throughout the school year, and make residential life at Reed superb.

In the second floor of Bidwell, where I abide, Angelynn is the House Advisor. She is a spunky, uproarious, and kindhearted lassie.

This is Angelynn’s second year as a House Advisor. At the end of her freshman year, Angelynn’s roommate suggested she apply to be an HA. The more Angelynn thought about it, the more she realized “being an HA would be beneficial to me in every way. I get a shot at making living-at-Reed matter, and perhaps share a similarly fantastic and funky community I got to experience my first year in J-dorm.”

Angelynn loves being a liaison between Reedies and Residence Life because she gets to share her floormates’ input about living on campus, and she claims being an HA has allowed her to meet a lot of interesting people.

The Resident Directors assist HAs in all their undertakings. RDs are full-time professional staff members who work and live on the Reed campus.

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What is a “conference?”

sit down ’round our table, student

and listen to my tale

a tale of sound and fury–

a scholarly portrayal

 

our prof is called by name, her first

my peers are on alert

collecting data, explaining texts

a motley type consort

 

we strive for knowledge, for laurel leaves

we’re reading all the day

when we speak, we orate true

let voices lead our way

 

oh, Goddess, Muse, sing to me now

of students you have known

of books you’ve read and epics penned

of seniors all bone-worn

 

the conference style is dear to us

here at good Reed College

we like to learn and conversate

true cerebral barrage

 

we know the man of twists and turns

we know Sinuhe’s tale

we know the or’gin of the forms

from whence great authors hail

 

we learn all this and so much more

in conference-style class

discourse, it seems, destroys limits

on what there is to grasp

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Junior Qual Vanquished!!!

This week I feel simultaneously grown up and triumphant. The reason for this is that Monday night I submitted my Junior Qualifying Exam. The “Qual” varies by major, but is something that all Reed students have to do during their junior year to demonstrate they are qualified to write a senior thesis in their major.

Sociology’s junior qual takes the form of writing a 25-30 page paper due the Wednesday after Spring Break. After a month of department meetings to prepare, last week the Sociology juniors set out on the journey that is a junior qual:

First, I found that my creative energy was really flowing:

Note the puns.

Note the puns.

You can really say I gave it “QU-all” I got. I certainly went “QU-all” in.  Although in addition to all my effort I also seemed to be aided by good luck:

I found a ladybug on one of my Qual books and saw it as a sign of good luck.

I found a ladybug on one of my Qual books and saw it as a sign of good luck. Actually I saw 10 ladybugs in that general area, so clearly the Educational Technology Center is a magnet of good fortune.

Jokes aside the qual really was hard work. Yet, it was effort in a topic I find incredibly fascinating and really care about. It also served as a total bonding experience for all the sociology majors. Not only were we all going through the same experience, but also the sociology seniors hosted a dinner for all the sociology juniors last week.

Lastly, all that work was worth it. I now not only feel like legitimate upperclassmen, but I’m extremely proud of myself for going through the process.

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There’s No Place Like Homer’s

I can imagine after sacking the sacred citadel of Troy, and a ten-year voyage home, Odysseus was a little peckish.

At 6pm sharp, the Reed College Bookstore turns into Homer’s Hut, a wonderland of nourishment and personal care items. Until 3am, Reedies can purchase from a hodgepodge of nibbles- salubrious and sweet.

Meet Annam, who’s name coincidentally means “Food of the Gods,” has been working at Homer’s since her sophomore year.

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“I started as a cashier, and now I’m a student manager/resident ‘go-to’ girl.”

Annam really wanted to work in the bookstore, “…because I had a friend who worked there and loved it. You get to talk to all sorts of people, and you can do your homework and listen to music while you’re working. And I love my bosses! It’s like having another family here.”

Salt & vinegar chips, Snicker’s ice cream bars, and sparkling Yerba Maté are Annam’s favorite Homer’s items.

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A Spring Break Soak

Many of my peers spent their spring break sleeping in, sampling food carts, and lying out on the front lawn (it’s 70 and sunny as I write this).  Me? I took advantage of Portland’s close proximity to Oregonian natural wonders, like this hot spring:

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Natural mineral-water geothermal spring near Detroit, OR.

That’s where I soaked one morning during my three-day stay at a hot springs retreat in the woody wilderness, just south of Portland. Equally beautiful was the drive there, through mountainous areas with green-blue lakes:

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Fig. 1: me, gazing off into the horizon, with super cool pants on. Photo cred to my mom.

It didn’t once occur to me when I was applying, but I am so glad to attend school in this gorgeous region with so much adventure potential. Next break, I think I’ll take a drive to the coast– or maybe an old growth forest. There’s just too much to choose from.

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RAW: Daemon

Spring always begins for me with Reed Arts Week, or RAW, and this year’s theme was “Daemon.” There are a couple ways to experience RAW, and I’m not the kind that prints out a schedule and checks off each exhibit in turn. Mostly, I wander the campus and happen upon installations naturally. Faves from this year include:

- Clay figures in a small movie theater watching a video, and slowly melting as water drips onto their heads
- Three black and white photographs of power lines and landscapes, with headphones through which two viewers can listen to static noise
- A recreated 90′s childhood playroom inside of a canvas tent– complete with Gushers, Polly Pockets, VHSs of cartoons, and scented markers
- A video loop projected in our campus Chapel, featuring Winnie the Pooh

All are difficult to describe, so forgive my reductive summary of these pieces. You’ll just have to come visit them yourselves!

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Thesis Shows

Images of Corinne's show, taken by Amanda Carnegie '15

Images of Corinne’s show, taken by Amanda Carnegie ’15

Because senior theses represent the accumulation of four years of study, they can easily fly over the heads of underclassmen and those in disparate disciplines. Seniors in the theater department, however, create (or otherwise produce, direct, design, and/or perform) theses that their peers, both in their own and other departments, can experience.

Images of Corinne's show, taken by Amanda Carnegie '15

Images of Corinne’s show, taken by Amanda Carnegie ’15

Last weekend I saw shows by thesis candidates Corinne Bachaud and Rebecca Thurber in the Performing Arts Building. Sitting in the audience, I felt like I was able to participate in my peers’ processes in a way that other theses do not allow.

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Reed, Right on the Button

“Sew what,” you ask?

When you visit the Admission Office, be sure to pick up a button or two. The annular accessories are the brain child of our very own Jenny Gadda, the smiling face behind the desk who greets each of our visitors. Each one of these buttons is made with love and care, these pin-able curios capture Reed’s many sides, marvels, and ideas; bright as a button.

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Sustainability @ Reed

Last week, Reed held an open discussion forum to look at sustainability at the college. Focused primarily on the possibility of divesting the school’s endowment from companies that engage in fossil fuel extraction, the forum gave students an opportunity to analyze our dear school’s impact on the environment. If you were to listen to the audio of the forum, you would hear your favorite blogger talking about honor and the environment!

Reed’s commitment to discursive education and decision-making is exemplified in the use of fora to analyze and, hopefully, solve the issues we feel passionately about.

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The cherry blossoms have arrived!

HOORAY! It’s official; my favorite time of year is here. It’s cherry blossom time!

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This would be reason two-million-something that I love my life as a Reed student: for about one week and one week only, Eliot circle is graced with an explosion of white blossoms on our cherry trees. Then in the course of a day or so, all the trees shed their petals in an epic, botanic snowstorm. Then, one must wait until next spring for another glorious show.

Ah, the ephemeral beauty.

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