Pizza & Prof: Dr. Brian Payne

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On October 21st the Honors Program held its second Pizza & Prof event of the semester featuring Dr. Brian Payne. The theme for this Pizza & Prof event was “Poverty and Social Action in American History.” The event was divided into three sections that corresponded with three main questions that one must address when dealing with the issue of poverty: What is poverty? What causes poverty? What steps have been taken to address poverty?

When discussing what poverty is, Dr. Payne described why it is so problematic to define poverty. He explained how poverty is given a different definition in different countries, making it difficult to compare poverty between different nations. Also, Dr. Payne described the construction of the poverty line and the difficulty of examining poverty throughout American history, since it has not always been recorded.

When answering what causes poverty, Dr. Payne talked about the different arguments that have been made to identify the roots of poverty, including personal habits, economic factors, and societal factors. When poverty first became a topic of interest after the American Revolution, people thought the cause was due to personal habits. The belief that economic factors cause poverty is the argument that is common among people today. The reasoning behind this argument is that poverty is a temporary result of recessions and depressions. Those that argue that societal factors cause poverty look at the influence that race, gender, class, youth, and marital status have on an individual’s income. Another factor looked at is how poverty changes, or does not change, over generations.

Finally, when addressing what has been done to fix poverty, Dr. Payne encouraged students to share their experiences volunteering at Father Bill’s and participating in canned food drives. In this section Dr. Payne and students examined the benefits and limitations of volunteerism. Dr. Payne also talked about the possible development of a mentoring program between faculty and staff members who were first generation college students from working class families and students who identify with this description as well.

Join us for our next Pizza & Prof event on November 4th with Dr. Jen Aizenman! We hope to see you there!

-K. A.

Mentor/Mentee Mixer: Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular

On Monday October 20th the Honors Mentoring Program hosted a trip to the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular at Roger Williams Park Zoo. During this event 25 mentors and mentees came together to see over 5,000 illuminated jack-o-lanterns! Of these jack-o-lanterns, over 125 were pumpkins carved to follow this year’s theme – “Jack-O-Lanterns from A to Z.” To carry out this theme, elaborate pumpkin displays were arranged in alphabetical order, starting with “Alice in Wonderland.” Other displays included scenes from history, pop culture, and tributes to inspiring figures and legends. Check out some pictures from this awesome event!

-K. A.

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Faces Of Weygand!

Check out what some of our Upperclassmen Honors RLC students shared about their Honors experience! -C.A

Alyssa CiolfiAlyssa Ciolfi

Year: Sophomore

“I really like how we have Colloquial classes once a week. I didn’t do Honors in high school but it’s not as difficult as I thought, and everyone in the Honors Program is pretty helpful.”  

 

 

 

 Kayla DowdKayla Dowd

Year: Junior

“The Honors Program shaped my college experience.”

 

 

 

 

547793_478277072219642_2142471307_nMikaela Astore

Year: Junior

“The best part about living in the Upperclassmen Honors RLC is living with my best friends.”

 

 

 

 

422806_529627527054302_141916108_nKyle Cuccia

Year: Sophomore

“I met all my best friends in the RLC it’s a good and strong community.”

Pizza &Prof: Dr. James Hayes-Bohanan

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On October 7th the Honors Program held its first Pizza & Prof event of the semester featuring Dr. James Hayes-Bohanan. Pizza & Prof is an event that allows students and honors faculty to come together and engage in an informal discussion over a given topic. The theme for this Pizza & Prof event was coffee, with students being able to taste Nicaraguan coffee. Dr. James Hayes-Bohanan discussed a variety of different coffee related topics, including his Nicaragua study tour, his “Secret Life of Coffee” Second Year Seminar, and ways to improve coffee on campus.

The discussion began with a look at Dr. Hayes-Bohanan’s winter study tour to Nicaragua. During this study tour, students travel to Nicaragua to learn more about the growing, processing, transportation, consumption, and environmental and social impacts of coffee, as well as the global coffee industry. This January will mark the 9th year of the study tour and over the years it has been offered over 85 students have participated, with several students either taking part in the study tour multiple times or returning to Nicaragua for different projects.

The discussion then moved to discuss Dr. Hayes-Bohanan’s Second Year Seminar, entitled “The Secret Life of Coffee.” During this Second Year Seminar students learn about the coffee trade, coffee in other parts of the world, and local cafés. Students have also hosted an event focused on the use of fair trade ingredients. At this event, members of the Bridgewater State University community were able to taste coffee from 11 different countries.

The event concluded with discussing ways that coffee can be improved here at BSU. One way that was discussed was the idea of a café being added to the Conant Science Building. The design plans for the Conant Science Building included a café, and the space for the café has been built, however due to some resistance the possibility of this coffee shop has not been approved.

Overall the night was filled with an intriguing discussion and deeper look at coffee’s role on both a local and global level. Join us in the Honors Center for our next Pizza & Prof event, “Poverty and Social Action in American History,” on Tuesday, October 21st with Dr. Brian Payne.

We hope to see you there!

-K. A.

Penny Wars: Battle of the Academic Colleges

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After reading the inspiring story of Malala Yousafzai for the Honors Fall Book Club pick, I am Malala, the Honors Student Congress will be taking action to raise money for the Malala Fund by holding a Penny War! To go along with the education theme associated with the Malala Fund, the Penny War will be held as a competition between the four academic colleges – the Bartlett College of Science and Mathematics, the College of Education and Allied Studies, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and the Ricciardi College of Business.

The Malala Fund aims to “invest in efforts that empower local communities, develop innovative solutions that build upon traditional approaches, and deliver not just basic literacy, but the tools, ideas and networks that can help girls find their voices and create a better tomorrow.” The Fund prioritizes and acts decisively “to educate girls and empower them to change their lives and communities.” Those familiar with Malala Yousafzai’s story are aware of the courageous steps she has taken to fight for this mission, risking her life to become an activist for girls’ education and empowerment. Now, we all have the chance to do our own small part in helping this amazing organization reach its goal to ensure that all girls have equal access to a quality education!

The Penny Wars will be a competition between the four academic colleges, to see which can raise the most money for the Malala Fund, while also earning the most points. Each college has its own designated jar; the objective is to place pennies and paper currency in your college’s jar to stack up points, and place silver coins into the jars of the other colleges to deduct points from their score.

Points will be awarded by the following:

Penny     +2 points

Nickel   -5 points

Dime     -10 points

Quarter   -25 points

Dollar   +100 points

Collection jars are located in the Honors Center and are ready for donations! The competition is going on now through October 17th, support your team by donating today!

May the best college win!

To learn more about the Malala Fund, visit their website at www.malalafund.org.

-K. A.

Further Look into Honors Mentoring with Morganne Lundin

 

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What is your major/year/fun fact?

Athletic Training, Junior, I was born with an extra set of teeth!

What has your journey throughout the Honors Program been like?

It was intimidating going in because I did not know what expect but I’ve taken classes along the way that have helped ease my anxieties about completing a thesis. I have lived in an honors RLC all three years I’ve been here and I love it!

What are you involved in on campus (clubs, sports, community service?

Orientation Leader, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, BSU Observatory Manager and field hockey and volley ball intramurals.

What inspired you to want to be a Mentor?

Being an Orientation Leader the past two summers has given me a love for incoming students and a desire to reach out and help them feel comfortable and welcome any way possible. Being a mentor allows me to connect more one-on-one with a couple new students on a deeper level.

What is it like being an Honors Mentor?

It is really rewarding. Being the person that people go to for help is the person that I’ve always wanted to be. I want to see my Mentees succeed and get all they can out of their experience at BSU.  Its fun just hanging out and getting to know them too.

What kind of advice have you given to a First Year Honors Student beginning their career at BSU?

GET INVOLVED! Don’t be afraid to try new and random things. Put yourself out there because the more you push yourself out of your box the more you grow and discover who you really are.

What is your favorite Honors Program related memory?

My whole freshman year! Living in the honors RLC as a freshman and sharing a class with them opened me up to getting to know not only my roommates but my whole floor. I know I can go to any of them for a smile even though I haven’t talked to some of them in months. I am grateful for all the memories we made and thank them for their friendship because I wouldn’t have made it through freshman year without that awesome community!

If your Mentee wanted to get involved (both in the Honors Program and out of it) what kind of advice would you offer them?

Don’t be afraid! It sounds silly but it’s okay to show up to meeting by yourself. You don’t need to drag a friend to a meeting; if you are interested you should go out on a limb and just do it! Organizations LOVE getting new members so go in with a smile and you’re bound to make a room full of friends.

How has being a Mentor helped you grow?

It has given me more responsibility to hold myself accountable to reach out to my mentees. Our relationship is directly related to the effort I put in. It is not a job so if I don’t want to connect with them I don’t have to, but I value it enough that I continue to.

What have you learned from being an Honors Mentor?

I have learned that sometimes all you have to do is listen or be there for someone and that’s enough. You don’t need all the answers to be a mentor; you just need a good heart.

Thank you Morganne for taking the time to share your experience! We continue to wish you the best on all your endeavors.

-C.A

The Honors Mentoring Program Presents: Cradles to Crayons Drive

With the start of a new school year just passing, many of us likely have extra school supplies lying around. Why not put this unused supplies to use by donating it to a great cause? The BSU Honors Mentoring Program is partnering with Cradles to Crayons to collect new and gently-used books and children’s items. Cradles to Crayons is a wonderful organization that provides children from birth through age twelve with essential items that will help them grow and develop in all areas. All children who benefit from Cradles to Crayons are living in homeless or low-income situations and are given the necessities they need free of charge. The mission of the organization is to help all children “thrive – at home, at school, and at play.”

The Honors Mentoring Program kicked off the drive on September 1st by holding the “Cultivating Engaged Citizen Scholars” Welcome Week Institute. During this time new honors students were able to meet and get to know their mentors while decorating donation boxes for the book/supply drive. Between the two sessions 60 people participated and made the event a great success, not only by decorating collection boxes to disperse throughout the campus, but by also bringing in a great deal of donations!

You can help by donating books or new school supplies to one of the many donation boxes spread out around campus! Boxes are located in the Honors Center, Art Building, Tillinghast Hall 340, Conant 431, and Hart 315. Books needed include board books, picture books, easy readers, early chapter books, young adult books, foreign language books, and baby books ages 0-2. Please no family, religious, or holiday books. School supplies being requested include markers, pencils, folders, notebooks, and activity and coloring books. Donations will be accepted now thru September 30th.

Donate today to help a child in need have the fundamentals for success!

To learn more about Cradles to Crayons, visit their website at www.cradlestocrayons.org.

-K. A.

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