It’s Finally That Time Again!

It’s crazy to me that we only have a week and some change before Thanksgiving. And once you’ve made it to Thanksgiving it might as well be Christmas!! It’s that time of year again! Around this time at Wofford  you really appreciate going to a school in the upstate. Being in an arboretum there are trees EVERYWHERE! Its literally breath taking getting to walk to class and the sunsets have been gorgeous! Last week Instagram was blown up with pictures of the pink sky, of course I was inside doing school work and didn’t actually get to see it, but it sure did look pretty from the pictures!

Last week I also got to go to one of our student art galleries here at Wofford. I love that at Wofford we seem to always have at least two different art shows out, if not more! I would never have associated Wofford as a very artistic school coming in, and artsy still isn’t what I would call Wofford, but the college does a really good job at setting up cultural events for students and informing the students of cultural even happening around Spartanburg.

The exhibit reception they had last weekend was for Josh Holt. He did an exhibit to raise awareness and funds for a movement that helps to end slavery and sex trafficking. It was an all charcoal display and I really enjoyed how he layered different pieces of wood to add another dimension to his pieces. He portrayed a lot of young women and boys, and the eyes of the faces he drew were probably my favorite part. I should mention that I know nothing about art, but I do enjoy looking at it and thankfully have friends who know a lot more about it than me. While the reception was last weekend the display is still up until we get out for Christmas, so if you haven’t gone by to see it yet, I would definitely recommend doing that before its gone!

 

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Favorite Places and Spaces

I feel life even though it’s my third year at Wofford, I still hear of new places to go hang out at or eat at in Spartanburg. Just this weekend I found out that Spartanburg has a dollar theater that actually plays good movies most of the time, who knew!  So, I figured I’d take the time to share my top 10 favorite places and spaces in Spartanburg. (Warning most of them are restaurants, I can’t help it Spartanburg has surprisingly good food)

10. Climb Upstate

This is the local climbing gym. Freshman year I took the rock climbing interim which really sparked my love of climbing.  I always love heading over to the gym to relax and get some good exercise. And the people that work there are super great!

9. Goodwill

Goodwill shopping is the BEST and in Sparkle you never know what you might find you can always get great treasures:)

8. Hub City Farmers Market

I actually didn’t discover this until this year, but every Saturday a small farmers market sets up downtown near the Railroad and there’s lots of fresh locally grown foods and homemade jams.

7.Taco Dog

Sounds kind of weird but its like a Moe’s that also serves hotdogs, but better! Burrito bowl is definitely the way to go!

6. Cribs Kitchen

This is another restaurant that is definitely worth going to. My favorite thing to get is their pear salad but they’re also known for their burgers and sandwiches.

5. Broadway Bagels

A local Bagel shop that makes there bagels fresh every day, there Cheddar Everything bagel is to DIE for!

4. Mon Amie

This is a French Bistro on the East side of town, they make crepes and other yummy treats like Brie fries. A really good place to grab brunch!

3. The Rocking Chairs at the baseball feild

This was my absolute favorite study spot freshman year! Now that I live so far away from the baseball field I don’t normally put in the effort to make the 7 minute walk (yes I know how ridiculous that sounds) but every now in then I still go over there to get some of my school work done.

2. The Mariott

This one might seem a little strange I know, but I go to Newspring Church and this is where the Spartanburg location meets (for now permanent location coming soon!). Its the best place ever!! Not only is the worship and sermon great but the community in the church is the best I’ve ever experienced. This might seem a little weird because the church is so big, but I have such great fellowship there! You should really check it out Jesus is really using Newspring to change lives mine included.

1. The Coffee Bar/ Cakehead Bakeshop

This is my absolute favorite place to go and its located in the heart of downtown on Main street! Its a little ridiculous how often I go but I just can’t help it, it’s just so good. First you walk into The Coffee bar which sells Little River coffee and that is SO much better than Starbucks (just saying). Then once you’ve gotten your cup of coffee you walk to the back of the coffee shop and there is a bakery! Cakehead makes better cupcakes than any other place I’ve ever been and being someone who really loves cupcakes and who always visits the local cupcake bakery, that’s saying something.  My favorite is their Salted Caramel, but you can’t go wrong with anything at Cakehead. The whole atmosphere of the Coffee Bar is just really great I like to meet there for different meetings or just to chat with friends, and I also like to do homework there (I’m normally super productive). Basically if you come through Spartanburg and don’t stop here you’re doing yourself an injustice, it’s really just that good.

So next time you stop in Spartanburg try a couple of these places you won’t be disappointed!

 

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A much needed Fall Break

I don’t think that fall break could have come at a better time this year.

Its hard to believe that it’s been almost a week and a half since I found out that Martha had passed away and even now it still hard for me to understand. And unfortunately even though it may have felt like my world had slowed down, especially the first few days after getting the news, life and Wofford don’t slow down at all. School is of course in full swing the number of quizzes, exams, and papers due won’t get any better down until December 13th.

Needless to say I was very excited for the break, even if it only consisted of one day off. And more than the day off, I was excited to have the day to spend with my family especially my little sister. AND the State Fair was in town!

Being from Columbia, I’ve been to the State Fair every year for as long as I can remember. But, since getting to Wofford I haven’t gotten the chance to go at all.  I don’t particularly love the food at the fair (though I do LOVE cotton candy and candy apples) and I never ride any of the rides (roller-coasters that are put up in a couple of days and then taken back down don’t sound particularly safe to me) but I still love going to the fair. The buildings are always super fun to go through and I always love looking at all the artwork,especially the student art (which always points out that 2nd graders are more artistic than me).  And this year I went to the Needtobreathe concert with my sister which was a lot of fun.

I also got to go to one of my sister’s cross country races and happened to run into a couple of the girls I use to run with in high school. Additionally I got to bake in a REAL KITCHEN and eat real homemade food! Overall it was just a really nice trip home, and a small break from school work to rejuvenate me enough to power through school assignments. At least until Thanksgiving : )

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The International Festival

Today I planed to spend the day on the side of a mountain hiking with one of my friends. Unfortunately, the government shut down means all national parks are closed, which put a little bit of a damper on our plans. Thankfully however, Barnet Park in downtown Spartanburg hosted the International Festival today, so we spent the day there instead.

It always surprises me how many different festivals and other cultural events Spartanburg has, but it seems like almost every weekend there is something going on. Just this past week the Chapman Cultural Center hosted a group of Tibetan Monks that created a really cool and really complicated sand art masterpiece. TONS of Wofford students were there all week going to the different ceremonies they did and watching them make the work of art.

Anyways, the International Fair was really cool (and really hot). Basically they had 4 different areas, a food area (definitely my favorite), an area where  you could learn about the different cultures of a bunch of different countries, an area for kids where they could make different crafts, and then there was an amphitheater where different groups put on different shows (often different cultural dances).

In order to get any of the food you had to “exchange currency” and get a set of tickets that you could use to purchase food from all the venders. Hallie and I got apple beignets, crawfish Kettle chips, turtle cheese cake, and some type of French sweet bread roll. It was SO GOOD. We also walked through all of the cultural area where we got to hang out with Uncle Sam, Abe, and the Pope, got a free t-shirt from Italy and got some really cool henna from Bangladesh.  Over all it was a total success of an afternoon (minus my super sunburnt shoulders).

Here are some pictures we took at the festival!

      

      

       

 

 

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Busy Busy Busy

This past week has been crazy busy! I wish I could say that I have had something specific going on that has made it so crazy, but I really haven’t its just been busy. School is really starting to pick up and unfortunately its only going to get worse before it gets better.

No matter what classes I’m in, all of my exams always end up being pilled up together in the same week. For instance, next week I’m going have an exam in every one of my classes, and what’s worse is that three of them are on Monday and Tuesday alone. AHHHHHH!! In reality it shouldn’t be too terrible. It means that for the next week and a half I won’t do much more than go to class, go to work, go to church, and study, but then I’ll get a little bit of a break.

For a couple weeks at least…

Until the next crazy week where all my professors decide to bombard me with essays and lab reports and exams again…

Back to studying!!

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What to do at Wofford?

Coming into Wofford I remember being a little worried that there wouldn’t be very much to do or get involved in because Wofford is such a small school. BOY was I wrong! Today Wofford had it’s interest fair and that reminded me of just how much really is going on all over campus through so many different organizations.

After my first interest fair freshman year I remember being signed up for more organizations, clubs, and teams than I would ever be able to actually be involved in and stay sane. There is everything from Ultimate Frisbee to Campus Outreach, Cooking Club, Tae Kwon Do, Pre-Law society, R.U.F., Best Buddies, and Campus Union. Thankfully signing your name and giving your email to all these different groups isn’t binding, and after I got more information on what everything was and what the time commitments were, I narrowed  my list of organizations down to what I really wanted to be committed to.

One of the organizations I decided to join didn’t even have a charter at Wofford my freshman year. My roommate actually started the chapter at Wofford and so I was on board right from the start. The organization is call Students Helping Honduras (SHH), and it does exactly what it sounds like it would do. SHH gives college students the opportunity to go over to Honduras and help the people who are in need there, specifically by building schools, classrooms, and providing the needed supplies for children who otherwise wouldn’t be able to get an education. The goal is to get a group of students who are committed to going, and to raise the funds to be able to go to a village in Northern Honduras over Wofford’s Spring Break.  This year I am really hoping I am able to go on this trip! Last year I was able to do an alternative Spring Break trip through Habitat for Humanity in Mobile, AL.  It was such a great experience, and opportunity to serve others who were in need and I can’t imagine not doing some form of a service project again this year.

One of the things we did last year and will continue to do this year is to sell grilled cheese sandwiches as the Row on Friday nights. Last year it was a hit! In fact, today while standing at the SHH booth I had multiple people come up and ask if we would be doing it again this year! We’re planing to expand some of our fundraisers this year so that we can really offset the cost of a student who would like to spend their time serving, but doesn’t necessarily have the funds to do so on their own. It was really exciting to see all the new students who were interested in joining us this year too!  Keeping my fingers crossed that we will get to take a group of 10-15 students this year!

If you want to learn more about SHH check out their website here http://www.ceciskids.org/

Also here are a couple pictures from one of my friend’s trip with SHH a 2 years ago!

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Only 3 more days to wear white!

Only 3 days until Labor Day which means 3 more days to wear white! I think the for most students Labor Day is very bitter sweet. Labor Day at Wofford means quite the opposite of what it means for every other place in America. While everyone else gets the day off, we get to start class.  Its super exciting to be back at Wofford to see everyone we’ve missed all summer, but seeing the many pictures of our friends from back home at the lake, enjoying the day off from work or class, always reminds me of the extra work we put into our studies because we attend Wofford.  But, I absolutely love Wofford and the challenge that comes with it.

This year I’ll be a Junior and I can’t believe I’m already half way done with my time here.  I’m a double Biology and Chemistry major and plan to attend medical school. I’ll actually be taking the MCAT in January, which is definitely a little nerve racking. I TA, tutor, work in the library and am involved in several clubs on campus, so basically I try my best to stay as busy as possible.  I think many students feel like they never have a free moment, but if they’re anything like me, they don’t really want one. The opportunities both academically and in the community always seem to be worth it.

Unlike most students coming back to Wofford today, I didn’t get the typical summer break we get to enjoy while in college. Instead I spent my summer in good old Sparkle City taking Organic Chemistry and working, which basically means that I never left Wofford. Honestly though, I have no complaints.  I really enjoyed my summer. Summer school at Wofford is very different from the regular semester. Beyond the obvious differences (you only take 1 or 2 classes and you have them everyday), the whole mindset of summer school is very different. Most students seemed to fall into one of two categories, either they felt super overwhelmed with the big chunks of information that was being thrown on them all at once, or they felt way more relaxed than normal because they only had to focus on one subject at a time.

Thankfully I fell into the second category. While it was a TON of information being thrown at us each day only having to do organic all day everyday made it really easy for me to focus. During the regular semester there is always so much that seems to be going on in addition to classes, so this was a nice change that I took full advantage of.  During the week I basically did nothing but organic, man the desk at the Library, and spend way to much time on Netflix watching One Tree Hill and Grey’s Anatomy. But, because of this I really got to enjoy my weekends.  I spent a couple weekends at the beach , a couple weekends hiking near Caesar’s head, spent one picking blueberries locally, and also headed to Raleigh, NC for the first time with a friend. Having Dr. Bass as my professor also helped make the summer great. He is by far one of the best professors I’ve ever had. Not only is he super smart (so he always has the answer to any O. Chem question you could ask), and funny (even though you might hear the same jokes all summer), but he really cares about his students and really wants them to succeed and therefore spends way more time that he should in his office working with students to make sure they understand and are confident going into the tests.

This summer is also when I decided that I was going to go abroad the fall of my senior year, and I’m SO EXCITED!  One of the best things about Wofford is how easy it is to study abroad and how much it is encouraged. Many of my friends went abroad last year or are abroad right now and all of them love it! Right now I’m still finishing my application, but if all goes as planned I’ll be spending the fall of 2014 in Legon, Ghana!  Ghana is definitely not a typical place students go. I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to experience a culture that is so different from South Carolina, while getting to continue my studies and even take courses I wouldn’t get the opportunity to take at Wofford. I’m hoping to get to study the health care and nutrition of Ghana, both in the classroom and outside of it.

Well time to get back to setting up my room (it always takes way longer than I expect it will). Class on Monday means lots to get done before then and lots of people to catch up with.

 

 

 

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