My TU Top 10

2014-06-12 16.45.52Thirty-two…thirty-one…thirty.  Thirty.  Days that is.  “Until what?” you might be asking.  Until the first day of the rest of my life!  Post-college, that is.  (I’m going to quit being cryptic here in just a second).  I’m talking about Graduation Day!

Not gonna lie.  Being a graduating senior is pretty legit.  I have #seniorstatus now, so that means I get to impart my wisdom on underclassmen about the best things to do in Tulsa, who the raddest professors are, and where the color printers are on campus.  It also means that I get to say things like, “You know, when I was your age, we called it ACAC – the Allen Chapman Activity Center – (it’s officially ‘The Union’ now, but in my heart it’ll always be ACAC; imagine how the Aflac duck would say – yep, that’s exactly how you pronounce it).

Speaking of things not being the same anymore – things aren’t going to be the same anymore!  My senior friends are going to travel near and far and do wonderful things in the world (but seriously, though – my friends are joining the Peace Corps, going to medical school, participating in Teach for America, getting great jobs – basically, they’re working it).  What am I going to do you might ask?  Well, in the words of my environmental ethics and conservation professor, Dr.Hill, I am going to flourish!  (She likes to ask us every day in class if we’re flourishing – and if you answer ‘no’ too many days in a row, you need to make a change in your life; kind of like that Steve Jobs quote about asking yourself if you’re happy with your life; it’s okay if you’re starting to have an existential crisis right about now – those are normal when your life has boundless opportunity!). Continue reading

Summer Days Quickly Approaching!

BellIt is not uncommon for me to screenshot picturesque photos of the TU campus from the @utulsa Instagram account and share them as my own. My followers back home in Missouri deserve to be jealous, and TU’s campus on a clear, sunny spring day is pretty difficult to compete with. The blue and yellow flowers pop with color against the crisp bright sky, and everything just seems perfect. It is not uncommon to see students hanging up hammocks across campus to take full advantage of the beautiful weather. One of my personal favorite spots to study is the library stairs at sunset. As I gaze across Chapman Commons and look towards downtown under a swirl of pinks, yellows, and oranges, there is nowhere that I’d rather be. TU just feels right; it is my home.

And yet, in about one month, I will be headed back to Missouri to spend the summer. While I am sad to be leaving TU for a few months, I am also excited for what the summer holds for me. The first week back will be full of watching baseball, sleeping, baking, sleeping, reading, and more sleeping. I am thoroughly looking forward to it. By the second week, though, I will already be bored. Thankfully, that’s when my internship with Burns and McDonnell, an engineering firm in Kansas City, starts! This summer will be my first internship experience, and while I’m looking forward to it, I am very nervous. However, my older friends have assured me that TU adequately prepares us, and they have all thoroughly enjoyed their own internships.

I’m also looking forward to the short trips I have planned throughout the summer. As president of my sorority, I get to attend our national convention in Orlando, Fla., this June. I am impatiently looking forward to spending a week with girls across the country that I share a special connection with based on the values we all uphold. It will be a once-in-a-lifetime event filled with ritual experiences, leadership seminars, inspiring speakers, and new friendships. Plus, I get to go to Disney World, which is the icing on the cake!

Additionally, I will be attending two weddings this summer! For someone who hasn’t been to a wedding since she was 8-years-old and only lives vicariously through Pinterest, this is super exciting for me. College has brought me close to a variety of wonderful people I call friends, and I am looking forward to watching them take this next big step in their lives. It also gives me an excuse to visit Tulsa and St. Louis over the summer.

It’s exciting to hear about all of the fun things people have planned for their summers. I have lots of friends getting excited to study abroad, many looking forward to summer concerts, and several with exciting vacations planned. With everyone off on their own fun adventures, the campus will still be beautiful, but it will be missing an important part. It truly is the students who make my campus shine so bright. My absolute favorite thing about TU is the fact that I cannot walk to class without smiling to at least one person that I know. My summer will be lots of fun, but I already have August 13th circled on my calendar to move back home to TU.  I’m excited to see all the new faces on campus, and I hope you’ll be joining me then, too!

The Ease Of Studying Abroad

1888439_721841354526667_981847913_nToday’s Tuesday with Tulsa comes to us from Kristina M., a junior Sociology major from Tulsa, OK.

I fostered the desire to go abroad from the very moment I knew how easy it was at The University of Tulsa. Before even starting school at TU, I went on my tour of the campus and was given some statistics on how many students go abroad, proving how easy it was. Next was the decision of where I wanted to go to and when I wanted to plan this adventure. Location was easy. I read a book entirely set in Ireland and it was no contest that I wanted to see the same beautiful scenery described in the books I read, in person. Timing was something that took more forethought. I decided on going my sophomore year to leave open the possibility of me going again later in my college career. With that all decided, funding was the next question, leading me to an information session on the Gilman Scholarship, a nationally competitive scholarship that is based both off of need and merit. That info session changed the still tentative plans that I had made so far.

The Gilman Scholarship encourages travel to non-traditional places, meaning places that students don’t often go to, and does that by awarding more scholarships to these places statistically speaking. That wasn’t the entire reason that I changed my location, but it made me start to consider other locations that weren’t in Europe. I chose Uganda after narrowing down my options. I started looking at programs in Africa because, as a sociology major, I wanted to go to a poor country and the Uganda: Post Conflict Transformation through SIT best fit my interest. Continue reading