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Tuesday Morning, 7am

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Tuesday Morning, 7:05am, 39 degrees. As I parked this morning I sat for a few moments and looked at the Professional Development Building on the Venice Campus. I took a few seconds to think about all the times I’ve sat in my car, looking at that building. I am reminded of how many emotional spaces I have been through, sitting in that same spot, over the past year or so at SCF. You might think, from reading my blogs, that all my time at SCF has been nothing but perfect. As I’ve mentioned before, nothing is ever perfect. Like most of us, I was not only attending school, but I was also living my life outside of school. That part comes with it is own set of challenges. There were a few times I thought I might not make it. Times when I questioned if I really wanted to go through it. Times when I thought the personal things in my life were too crazy, and I couldn’t possibly focus on school. Those pivotal decision moments are different for everyone. If I can give any advice it would be this

It’s easy to let frustration and chaos disrupt you life plan. It’s easy to give into the mode of “I don’t care, I’ve got too much going on in my life to worry about this class,” thinking. What is not easy is making the choice, because we ALL HAVE THEM, to keep things in perspective. Take the time to step back, and try to not be reactionary. Chaos is temporary; making a life changing decision based on something temporary is simply foolish, and there is no way to sugarcoat it.

There are a few people I need to thank:

Thank you Dr. Ford, for your guidance, and encouragement.

Thank you Michelle, for your friendship and amazing sense of humor (you’ve kept me sane more than you know!)

Thank you Kathy Snyder (who is no longer at SCF) for always taking care of myself, and all the other Veterans on Campus!

Thank you Jeff Snyder, for continuously

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striving to improve student life!

Thank you SCF Venice Campus, for graciously welcoming the newly formed “Veterans Exchange.”

And of course, thanks to my parents, for their unconditional support of my endeavors.

I’m calling it a wrap, but I think I might be seeing you all again.

Merry Christmas!

Lots of Yesterdays…

Coursework, Uncategorized No Comments »

Two more finals—that’s it—it starts at 7:30am tomorrow morning. By the time anyone reads this post, I’ll more than likely have already completed my STATS exam. I’ve done all the studying I can safely do. You can actually run this risk of overdoing it. When you reach the point when all the information blurs into one nasty jumble of confusion. I’ve been down that road before, and it’s ugly. So, I feel pretty confident about where I stand. It’s all about balance, and it’s different for each of us.

After my Horror Literature final is over (sometime around 2pm on Tuesday), my course work for the semester will be complete. I just got a little chill as I typed that last line, because it will not only be my last course work for this semester, but it will be my last at SCF. It’s times like this that really almost seem surreal, and also help to reassert just how fast time elapses. This isn’t a bad thing, and I know we say this all the time: “It seems like the semester just started.” And that’s just it. Something is always going to seem like it was just yesterday. Hopefully, for most of us, there will be several yesterdays, because that means we’ve taken on many new endeavors. That’s how we grow. That’s how we improve, and continue to solidify our purpose in this chaotic world.

Did I mention that the wind almost knocked me down today? Ridiculous. Honestly, though, being from New Hampshire, I’ve endured much worse. I’ll take cold, gusty winds in lieu of 3 feet of snow any day!

Well, that’s it

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for now. I’ll have a few closing thoughts in a few short days. After tomorrow, I just have to catch my breath.

70 Boxes

Campus Activities, Clubs, Off-campus activities attended with SCF friends, Uncategorized No Comments »

Some days really are perfect. Today, The Veterans

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Exchange and MOTS (Manasota Operation Troop Support) completed our “Toes For Joes” Sock Drive. We filled 70 boxes, for locally deployed troops, in Iraq and Afghanistan. We all met up at 9:00am, this Saturday morning. We got the boxes ready, actually knowing the names of the soldiers who were going to be opening them. We packed socks, shower shoes, candy, beef jerky, energy bars, letters, and cards. They are filled to limit, and ready to go!

The Veterans Exchange, which I’m extremely proud of co-founding, has accomplished so very much this semester. Our fantastic Venice Campus Student Life Advisor, Jeff Snyder, continuously extends his appreciation of what we have accomplished. He cannot recall a club, being newly chartered (only since this past August), achieving so much. And it was not easy. It took a lot of hard work and dedication. Our efforts have helped propel the Bradenton Campus to establish a Veteran’s Club of their own. To be honest, I’m still amazed at how all of this happened. The “Veterans Exchange” came to life from one simple question posed in a conversation during the summer term:

“Why don’t we have a Veterans Club on Campus?”

And that’s how things happen. It’s as simple as that—having a conversation— asking questions. So now, the Venice Campus has Veterans Organization that has over 40 members. I am truly honored to know that something I helped to create will become a permanent part of the social structure of SCF. It’s a great feeling.

Sometime ago, and I think it may have been my first blog, I wrote something like: “if a club doesn’t exist on campus, and you feel strongly about it, then START one.” Mostly anything is possible, and I’ve got the evidence to back it up.

Well—three finals left! STATS, History of Film, and Horror Literature. I’ll be officially done with

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my classes by 2pm on Tuesday, and by that time I’ll also be somewhat normal again (and “somewhat” is a key word in that last statement).

20 Questions

Campus Activities, Classes, Coursework, Uncategorized No Comments »

I really want some Ben & Jerry’s pistachio ice cream right now, but it’s so cold I think I might shiver myself to pieces if I have some.  I’m sure I’ll break down and have some anyway.  No pain, no gain, or so I’ve heard anyway.

It’s only Tuesday, and I feel like an entire week has already gone by.  I started the day off with Statistics, at 8am.  We got the low-down on what’s going to be on the final.  Only 20 questions! Wow, an entire semesters worth of information compacted into 20 questions.  You know what that means?  The questions are not going to be easy.  And I suppose they shouldn’t be.  I’ll find out one way or the other next Tuesday at 7:30am when I take the final. (Note to self: do not take anymore 8am classes, because 7:30am is just too early for taking a final)!

Tomorrow I have an orientation to attend at USF, then Thursday night is the Poetry Slam, Friday night is the Pop Culture Club Christmas Party, and Saturday, The Veterans Exchange, in conjunction with MOTS (Manasota Operation Troop Support) is holding a Packing Party.  We’ll be packing up all the socks collected during our “Toes For Joes” Sock Drive.  In total, we will be packing 65 boxes for locally deployed troops.   We are starting it at 9am (usually takes about 45mins).  This event is open to the public, and we WOULD LOVE TO HAVE TONS OF PEOPLE THERE!  Here is the address

MOTS Venice Office

7801 Tamiami Trail S., 6A

Venice, FL 34293

 

If you have any questions, please email scfvets@gmail.com.

Well, I at least have my statistics notebook out of my book bag, so technically I have begun studying, right?

Zombies and Heavy Christmas Trees

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I recently read my first Zombie novel. It was freakin’ awesome! If you want to enjoy a great read, pick up S.G. Brown’s “Breathers.” You won’t be disappointed, I promise! This novel was one the last works I’ve had to read for my Horror, Fantasy, and Science Fiction Literature course. I can’t say enough about this class. FYI, if you’re looking for a Gordan Rule class, and you like to read Horror, this is the one for you. Dr. Ford, whom I seem to write about all the time (but he really deserves it), teaches the class (LIT 2310). The only bad thing is that he teaches it every other semester. It won’t be available for the upcoming spring semester.

Zombies aside, I’m moving on, at about 100 plus

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MPH! Down to the last official week of classes, and there is absolutely NO way out of not being stressed. It’s something you kind of just accept—the workload—I mean it IS college, right?

So in between my mini panic attacks, I found the time to drag all the Christmas stuff, to include the world’s heaviest Christmas tree, down from the attic. I did that last week. Just a few hours ago I actually took it out of the box, which had been sitting in the corner of the living room (between you and me, I thought about just putting some lights on the box and calling it good) but I decided to stop being such a scrooge. I am going to

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try my hardest this year to enjoy the Holiday’s, because I can’t think of any good reason not to.

Well, after I post this, I’ve got some studying to tackle. Two more weeks—man, I’m going to need a bigger coffee pot.

A Little Scare

Deadlines, Graduation No Comments »

You know those confirmation numbers you always get? The ones after you make an online payment, telephone payment, or a registration for something. You know how you always think (at least me anyway) I won’t need it…but….—and you wind up saving it, or writing it down a scrap piece of paper? I’ll tell you what—it’s worth it, because sooner or later you’re going to need one of those annoyingly long confirmation numbers, you know, the ones that are like 47TGH439THX. Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but you get the point.

So anyway, after I had sent off an email asking if I could get some extra graduation tickets, my world of “everything’s going really well these days” suddenly became a little stormy. You see, I

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had expected a simple response email, something like: “Not a problem, you can pick up the extra tickets after the graduation rehearsal meeting.” That’s not what happened.

At 5:08pm, last night, I checked my email during a break in one my evening classes:

“William, It appears as though you have not completed the online graduation attendance form by Nov 12. You will have to fill out an appeal to the Education Records Office if you wish to be considered for the ceremony.”

Panic, frustration, anger, and disbelief are just a few of the emotions that ran through my mind. Had it really all come to this? Had I done all of this work, and now I might not even be able to attend my own graduation ceremony? No, not possible. I know I checked all the boxes. I know I filled out the online attendance form.

Well–after

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I calmed down–I remembered that after I had completed the online attendance form, I received a confirmation email, and you guessed it, it had a confirmation number: 67. Oddly enough, over the Holiday weekend, I was cleaning up my email inbox. I deleted a lot, but I didn’t delete the confirmation email. I even printed out a copy, just to be safe.

I replied to the email, attaching the original confirmation email I received from the records office. This morning, I got an email both apologizing and informing me that I was on the list for attending the graduation ceremony.

Granted, mistakes happen. Was I happy about spending the entire night worrying that I might not be able to attend my own graduation? No, not one bit, and neither was my family. But things happen, and every now and then you need those confirmation numbers. No system is ever perfect, but if we anticipate the unexpected, navigating the potential storms becomes a little easier.

Always Something Going On…..

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Thanksgiving went well, and I hope all

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of yours did as well! I got an A on my last STATS exam for the semester!!!!!! The end of the road is fast approaching. Three weeks! And you know what, there is so much going on I didn’t even know that caps and gowns were already available in the Venice Bookstore. I’m glad I asked.

Well, the cat’s been let out of the bag (Thanks Dr. Ford!), I made the finalists for the SCF Outstanding Graduate Award. Won’t find out until graduation! It’s really pretty cool, just being nominated. And I need to say thank you to a very good friend, Michelle (who took the time and thought to nominate me).

Well—we have more campus event’s going on. The Pop Culture Club is still raising money for SPARCC! On Friday, December 10th at 7:00pm, they are putting on their Annual Christmas Party, from 7pm-10pm, in the Selby Room on the Venice Campus.

Here are some of the details:

Pictures with Santa

Games (Santa Bingo, Arts and Crafts)

Food!!!

This party is highly “family orientated”, and it should be a blast, with proceeds going to a great cause! I hope to see you there!

Well, I have class at 4pm, and I need

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to consume at least two more cups of coffee before hand…outta here for now!

The Last Open Mike…:-(

Campus Activities No Comments »

The last of this semester’s Swamp Scribes Open Mike was last night, and it was great! We had about 30, very talented, readers. It was kind of emotional for me, because it was my last one, as an SCF student (I still plan to visit when I’m at USF). My good friend Jay helped me host the event. As one of the students commented, it was a wonderful celebration of free speech. Students and faculty alike were able to creatively express their ideas, philosophies, emotions, without any sort of confining filter. It’s truly something that doesn’t get fully appreciated for its magnitude.

Although it was the

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last open Mike reading, there is still one more BIG event to be held. It’s the Poetry Slam, Thursday, December 9th at 7pm in the Selby Room, Venice Campus. It’s a wild ride! It will once again be hosted the famed poet Ray Mcniece, and you can get a taste of his work and biography at his website: http://www.raymcniece.com/. It’s great fun and I hope to see you there. Last year, I was lucky enough to place in the final three (third place L), I hope to come in strong this year, but I’m know I’m up for a challenge. It’s amazing how many brilliant and quiet poets are among us.

I’m off to Archeology class, hope we find something today. If I don’t get a chance to, I’m wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!

30 Days

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I cannot believe I have reached the 30 day countdown! Graduation.  I’m fairly certain I’ve checked all the boxes, filled out all the paperwork, etc, etc, etc.  It’s kinda funny, even though I know I’ve done everything, I still feel like there is something I haven’t done.  I guess it’s my little OCD kicking in, like how I can never shut my car door without going through the ritual of checking for my car keys, at least three times.  Crazy (no pun intended).

Finals.  Do I really need to say anymore…I’ll save that panic attack for next week.

In all seriousness it has been a really great semester.  No it wasn’t perfect, but nothing is.  So, is there anything I would have done differently if I could somehow flip the calendar page back to August?  I would have to honestly say no.  Ultimately, even though I experienced a few headaches, it all seemed to work out well.  My grades are good, and the extra activities I took on all seemed to work out very well.  It kind of seems like I’m writing about the semester as if it ended yesterday.  But it in some ways it really has ended.  We’ve past the honeymoon phase, the mid-term virus, and now it’s the last leg of the journey.  It goes by fast.  Most of us more than likely won’t remember these last few weeks, because we’ll be too busy making sure everything is done, like all the last assignments, finishing that last paper, or last speech, the last whatever..

and then…some of us will be done, diploma in hand.  Some will be moving on to a new college, and some will back at SCF in the Spring.  To be honest, part of me wishes I were going to be back in the Spring.  But my journey is far from over, and SCF was a great stop along the way.  30 days until the next stop: USF.

Many Thanks!

Campus Activities, Off-campus activities attended with SCF friends No Comments »

Just got back from the Veterans Day Parade in Sarasota. First, could not have asked for more perfect weather. Second, it was great to be surrounded by so many fellow Veterans, and also the many who expressed their thanks for our collective service. I also

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got a free cup of coffee today from Starbucks! (Like I need more coffee).

BTW, yesterday was a huge success. Our Veteran’s Day Campus Cookout was received with much excitement! We made a profit, and we were able to collect a generous amount for both the VX and also to help out a member of the Venice Campus Staff, whom has recently been diagnosed with a serious illness. We would like to say thank you to all who bought a ticket, and all who simply donated!

Well, It’s Veterans Day, by the time this blog posts it will be over. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still thank a Veteran, because you can do that any day of the year.