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Posts from the ‘Professors’ Category
If you would have told me my freshman year that I would cut more than a foot of hair off my head, learn how to longboard, and major in communication and film, I would have thought you were crazier than the guy who walks his pet pig around campus on a leash. (Though I hear that dude is pretty awesome, don’t get me wrong.) Read more
People often make mention of nationalism, but not many actually take the time to study it thoroughly. But of course, why would they? The topic itself is very uncomfortable for many, and in the beginning it is like studying the official diagnostic manual for mental disorders — while reading it, you begin to “diagnose” yourself and start panicking.
Last year, I took Dr. Anastasiou’s class, Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict, offered in the Conflict Resolution program at PSU, and it was an absolutely eye-opening experience for me. Because of my experiences with it, I began the class believing that I knew a great deal about nationalism, and finished the class realizing that I had known nothing about it; I mean nothing at all.
Among the many things I learned about nationalism, was the way nationalism disguises itself. This fascinated me the most. Unlike the popular belief today that religion is the main cause of conflict, looking at cases of conflict around the world, one cannot help but notice that it is actually nationalism that is responsible for most of the bloodshed in the world. To make matters worse, and cause a great deal of confusion among people, the nationalists have often hidden their agendas under the cloak of religion, and rallied people behind their agendas under the motto “God wills it!” This should make one wonder, because these guys speak as if they are in direct contact with the divine; history, however, tells us that they are delusional.
Would you like to learn more about nationalism but are not sure where to start? I started with Dr. Anastasou’s article “Encountering Nationalism: The Contribution of Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution.“
It was only my first time there, and I accidentally tried to hustle the PSU bowling alley.
I stop by the desk to pay before I head in, and the guy at the desk says, “Nah, your boy already got you.”
“Thanks!” I tell my boy inside.
He’s only my boy in the colloquial sense, however; I don’t have any kids.
It’s a ghost town in there; we’re the only people in all six lanes. We start playing, and the balls are badly chipped. The bowling machinery at the end of the lane clanks loudly at regular intervals, like there is something stuck back there. Projectors display the score on the walls.
Matt and I play through a few games, and then a few more. As the minutes turn to hours I develop a strange fondness for our bowling alley, and even the annoying clanking seems like personality and flavor. It’s cheap and it’s right here, and it’s really not too bad for what it is.
Suddenly the guy from the desk comes running out.
“Hey! You gotta pay if you’re gonna keep playing!”
Whoops! Got carried away there. Unlike other bowling alleys you’re not automatically cut off when you’re done. I go and settle up.
Every morning I emerge from the fourth floor of Stephen Epler, groggy from almost sleeping through my alarm, hungry and hopelessly awaiting dozens of collegial topics to hit me in the face. I take the stairs to the lobby and join the school of fish I call Portland State.
Through rain or shine, I stomp my way past ‘The Meetro’ only to pass a short span of open green grass. Dozens of college kids alike take this path down to the Park Blocks, and it wasn’t till recently that I noticed that almost every morning a friendly man walks his two jack russel terriers around this small grassy area. Every day I see one terrier, ripe with energy, chasing a bright green tennis ball across the little field. The second terrier, calm and polite, patiently wags his tail next to his owner. The little brown spots on each of their faces reveal two incredibly handsome dogs with two different personalities.
Day after day, the college hustle and bustle passes the man and his dogs, only to walk away a bit cheerier than what they were originally.
One day I decided to finally talk to this man and thank him for bringing his lovely dogs to the park. They never cease to leave a smile on my face, and I didn’t realize until recently how much it brightened my mornings.
After talking with him, I finally learned one of the true purposes to his consistent early dog walking. It is not only his love for his animals (though we both agreed that animals are a special gift given to humans), but to strike a smile on people’s faces in the morning. He sees the anxious, stressed, and worried college kids each day and brings his playful dogs to the park to change their mood. Who would have guessed that this man purposely walks his dogs near campus, simply to make a stranger’s morning?
Simple acts of kindness truly make my day, and I deeply appreciate how PSU has made it possible to meet people like this.
Friday, February 22 7:30 P,M.
Sunday, February 24 4:00 P.M.
Portland First United Methodist Church.
Ever since I got accepted to do my MA at PSU, I have been hoping to get into a PhD program at PSU as well. I know many prefer to move to a different school once done with one degree, and that can be a good idea for the sake of getting a broader experience. But PSU and Portland already offer a fairly broad and diverse experience, in my opinion, and I speak from personal experience. Plus, this school is one full of new doors to great opportunities.
As far as I am concerned, at PSU I found the program I always wanted to study: Conflict Resolution. During my first year of study, I received a scholarship from PSU, and the following year, I received the assistantship of my dreams as a University Studies mentor. And not only did I have a great time with my mentees, I also received tuition assistance and got a great teaching experience out of it—an experience that I proudly present in my resume and applications.
For those who did not know, Portland State University currently offers 18 doctoral programs, more than 70 master’s programs, and over 35 graduate certificate programs. If you are not sure what is offered or where to start, check out the Graduate Degree Programs page, and you might find exactly what you were hoping for: http://www.pdx.edu/ogs/degrees
It’s that time of the year. That beautiful sun has gone missing and a misty grey veil has slipped over our city. Midterms seem gloomier, the snooze button is hit 10 times more than usual, and motivation has mysteriously disappeared. I’ve noticed throughout the dorms how this new dark weather has been affecting residents, and though I’m not a licensed therapist, psychiatrist or psychologist, these are my personal college tips on coping with Portland’s very own “50 Shades of Grey”. (And no, not like THAT shade of grey.)
- Vitamin C and Vitamin D! Head over to the “Vitamin Shoppe” on 4th avenue. Five bucks for a bottle of healthy mood enhancers? Yes please.
- It’s easy to get sucked into hibernation mode in our own rooms, but we are not small woodland creatures such as squirrels (unfortunately). We are humans who have the opportunity to NOT sleep away our winter. Set your alarm clock 10-20 minutes early because you know you’re going to hit snooze subconsciously.
- From my personal experience, working out is a huge mood booster. Even if you accomplish nothing else in a day, getting to say you worked out truly adds a feeling of success. All PSU students have free gym membership at the PSU Rec Center, so take advantage of it!
- Surround yourself with positive people. If you have that one ‘Positive Polly’ in your group of friends, make extra time for him or her. Actually, make time for all your friends. Being around others will motivate you to do more engaging activities than sitting inside all day.
- I would suggest adding “blue light” to your room. But let’s face it, a very small percentage of college students would actually take time to do this. If you feel that this trick will placebo your mind into thinking it’s blue outside, please take the cheap college route by making an extra tab and looking through google images for a bright blue picture to stare at. (I kid, I kid.)
Good luck fellow students! We can beat this SAD (seasonal affective disorder) ordeal together.
The thing about college is, it’s not all about college. There is just so much more going on, especially if you are in a place like Portland State. You can explore college life and go to a wide range of events put together by students, if you are not too busy with school, of course. But more importantly you get to meet people that you never thought you would, people from all corners of the world, and that, I think, is what makes college an enriched experience.
For most of my life, I have been more of an introvert. Nothing wrong with introverts, of course, but I have had a hard time connecting with people until I started going to college. After taking some classes, I somehow grew out of that introversion; I just had to, without even noticing it. Slowly I began making more connections and making new friends, and I do not mean just Facebook friends. Life in college opened up new doors for me, doors that I had never really knocked on or meant to open.
I had lots of connections before coming to PSU, but once I started attending PSU, my connections became more global, and that, I think, is very important in this day and age, especially for some of us who do not get to travel the world as much as we want. Today, we might make a connection and a friend, but tomorrow that connection could lead to a new career—you never know—it could be a career and a future that you only dreamt of! So make connections while you are at PSU.
It’s the eternal question of 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. You’ve decided to go out to lunch—but where? Sometimes it seems like the longer I’ve been here and the more options I’ve tried, the harder it gets. But having spent money at nearly every business within a few square miles of PSU, I’ve got some answers:
- Loco Loco’s Burritos (1728 S.W. Broadway) – My longtime favorite place on campus. Located down a perhaps overlooked stairwell next to Parking Structure 2, they serve large portion, real Mexican restaurant style food at a reasonable price. Bonus is the atmosphere, which is relaxed and homey.
- East Side Deli (1438 S.W. Park Ave.) – Featuring massive sandwiches with vegan options, they have all the deli flourishes like fancy sauces and cheeses at decent prices. They even serve beer.
- Hot Lips (1909 S.W. 6th Ave.) – My favorite of the pizza places on campus. Don’t expect a massive meal, but they’ve got those great pizza slices with odd toppings like potatoes.
- Asian Noodle (In front of the library) – Sometimes you need some food quick. This place is delicious, relatively healthy, and there is rarely much of a line. I’ve never been disappointed by their nice plates of protein, vegetables and rice.
- Bring your own lunch (Your house) – Whoops! Sometimes I forget this is an option too.
Where do you like to eat lunch PSU?