Getting an “A” in Self Care

By Jesse Turner

As the end of the term nears, stress levels rise. Time spent studying, writing, and reading goes up while time for ourselves and our health tends to diminish. This is why I was so happy when one of my professors took time out of her lecture to remind us that self-care is just as important as schoolwork. She asked us to share different ways that we destress and I thought I would share my classmates’ ideas with you. In response to, “What do you guys do when you’re stressed?”

We answered:

-Drink!

-Eat junk food. (These first two, however well they work, should be done in moderation)

-Sleep.

-Exercise.

-Dance.

-Cry while doing something fun/weird. You get to vent your frustration without getting sucked into a hole of despair. Her example was, “I cry while eating pudding.”

-Watch “trash TV” (ex. Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Dance Moms, Toddlers & Tiaras)

-Try to laugh without smiling/keeping a straight face. It looks and feels ridiculous and you’ll end up making yourself laugh.

-Read or watch something from your childhood. Recently I’ve been rereading “A Series of Unfortunate Events” and watching “Hey Arnold!”

-Connect with your friends and community. One classmate said she does Israeli dance twice a week, not just for the exercise but to also feel like a part of the community.

 

This is just a short list of things my classmates and I do to take our minds off of our stress. Please share any tips you have to lower your stress levels as finals week approaches!

 

Lose the R Word

By Jesse Turner

For what seemed like the hundredth time in the last year, I got into an argument with someone over the use of the R word. And for the hundredth time I got the excuse, “Well, I would never call a retarded person retarded.” This person was also using gay as an insult, again remarking, “I would never call a gay person a faggot.” I then told the person that I am not straight, and things got very awkward very quickly. I asked them, “Would you ever use bisexual as an insult?”

“Of course not,” he replied. Of course not. You would never use those words in the presence of the people they are meant to describe. Because that way, you don’t have to face the consequences of your hurtful words. I work with a young woman with a developmental disability who is brought to tears almost every day from bullying. She has heard the R word too many times.

But I’m sick of it. I’m sick of having to tell my life story to try to persuade people to stop using hurtful language. It should not matter the company you’re in and the ties they have to vulnerable and underrepresented populations. You should not use those words as insults because people are people and you’re not awful. Your desire to use certain words should not trump people’s feelings. Your vocabulary should be abundant enough that you do not need to reduce an entire population of people down to an insult. And if you need help, here are some alternatives:

Instead of retard/retarded, use:

-Chowderhead

-Boob

-Blockhead

-Fool

-Oaf

-Yokel

-Amateur Hour

-Cornball

-Farcical

-Plebeian

-Tomfoolery

Get even more terms from Terri Mauro’s “225 Substitutes for the R-Word”

http://specialchildren.about.com/od/disabilityrights/ss/225-Subsitutes-For-The-R-Word.htm#step4

Instead of gay, use:

-Heinous

-Preposterous

-Ridiculous

-Banal

-Pedestrian

-Platitudinous

-Old Hat

-Hackneyed

Affording My Dreams

edit 12By Jesse Turner

I have gone through five majors in my previous two years of college; international relations, environmental studies, religious studies, theater, and now finally, child and family studies. I have changed and changed my course of study depending on what I thought would make me the most money, what I thought was the most interesting, what I thought would help the world, and what my true passion was. I think I have now found in social work a good balance between marketability, necessity, and enjoyment. But now that I’ve made my choice, my problem is affording it.

I have always worked while in school, and I currently work two jobs. In fact, I know very few people at PSU who do not work year-round. And not just for some extra spending money, but to afford their education and housing. Portland State of Mind is coming in just a couple of weeks and on Tuesday October 27th from 7 – 8pm PSU will be a hosting a town hall style meeting (free and open to the public) about raising Oregon’s minimum wage from its current $9.25/hour to a possible $15/hour. This event falls in the wake of New York, San Francisco, and Seattle all passing legislation to raise their minimum wage. Similar legislation will likely appear before Oregon voters sometime next year. If I didn’t have to work that evening I would attend this meeting, and I highly recommend you all try to attend.

As someone who currently makes a wage less than the proposed minimum wage, as I’m sure many of you do as well, this legislation and this discussion affects me. At many times in my college career, I have felt that spending so much of my own and my parents’ money is a waste. What’s the point of bankrupting my family if I can’t get a job anyway? I have hope that this cycle of struggling to afford college then struggling to pay off debt after graduation will end. And I hope you all do as well. Whether you have hope, whether you have no hope, whether you feel lost in the struggle of it all, let’s do something about it. Make your voice heard at this town hall meeting and let our community know that everyone deserves a living wage.

Out-of-state student on paper, in-state by heart

jasmin.stairsBy: Jasmin Landa

Being an out-of-state student has truly been an adventure thus far. You see, I previously resided in Reno, Nevada, and loved the dry desert mountain land as my home and a place that describes what has raised me, but I felt that life always needs continuous change.

I wanted to make a drastic change that would require me to challenge myself. So I decided to do so during college — a change that would challenge my limits, perspectives and tolerances — all while expanding my cultural competency.

The journey began in the fall of 2014. I packed my bags, said goodbye to those who had helped me become the person I am and embarked on the road ahead to what was going to aid the dreams and aspirations that I so desired to accomplish. From day one, I acknowledged that the journey was not going to be easy by any means, but one in which I would find myself right where I needed to be.

It is now the winter term of 2015, and I have fallen in love with my decision to physically detach myself from what had made me, and attach myself to what would help me “become.”

I have already met wonderful people along this journey, both in and out of class: professors who always find ways to make me laugh and educate me, and the Portland State community at large. Being an out-of-state student brings a fresh perspective in my personal life that will carry me through my tribulations and triumphs.

I am excited, nervous and exasperated about the steps forward in my journey. As I take it day-by-day and opportunity-by-opportunity, I find myself learning and growing in all aspects of my life. I am an out-of-state student on paper, and in-state by heart.

Three Tips for Picking Classes

By Grace Carroll

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So you’ve just gotten a message to your .pdx e­mail that it’s time to register for classes.  Maybe you have a list of subjects you’ve always wanted to study, or maybe you just know the next Spanish class you need to take. Where ever you are in the process, here are some things to think about when registering:

● How often is the course offered? Keep in mind that some classes are not offered every term at PSU, while others are. For instance, most TOP: (topic) classes change each term, and if you find one specific to your interest, that should perhaps take priority over the Intro to Queer Studies class (a UNST Cluster course) that you’ve always wanted to take.

● What are your most productive times of the day? Sure, you’re sick of getting up with an early schedule, but maybe you’re just burnt out by evening classes. If you’re falling asleep in class, you may need to rearrange your day. Consider when you are most motivated during the day, and when you be best able to do your homework.

● Who is the professor? It’s true, you don’t always get much of a choice. But when you do, looking into your professors’ backgrounds can be a deciding factor in which classes you take. Portland State’s website has profiles for many of its faculty, so check the department pages for your courses. If you don’t find anything there, RateMyProfessors.com is your next step!

Still have questions? TALK TO YOUR ADVISER!

Nine Things I’ve Already Learned This Fall

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By Grace Carroll

1. Living in a single can be scary. I almost choked on a corn nut.

2. Shared restrooms are not so bad. Despite living on a floor with roughly 25 girls, I rarely run into other people in the bathroom.

3. Volunteering is a good way to get involved with PSU. Volunteering at the Women’s Resource Center gives me the chance to help do important work in a friendly environment.

4. Yes, I CAN put off all the homework for my 400-level Honors seminar until the night before it is due.

5. College sports can be super fun. On a whim, I joined rugby, and you could say I’m having a BALL.

6. If while studying in the library, someone irritates you by loudly talking on the phone, DO NOT passive-aggressively write “SHHHH, IT’S A LIBRARY” on their notebook while they’re at the water fountain. Go to the fourth, fifth floors or the basement, they are designated for silent study!

7. You can have small class sizes even at Oregon’s biggest university. Last year, my classes had 30 students. This fall, I’m in a class of ten 10 (and the rest aren’t much bigger).

8. Unlike the “cool kids” in my building, I still love my meal plan.

9. Nothing is more beautiful than the Park Blocks in autumn.

Wisconsin, don’tcha knooo?

By: Kadie Kobielusz

Over the summer, I was able to live in lands distant and exotic – ahem – in Wisconsin. Yeah big deal, right? Well, actually, I had one of my most eye-opening experiences when I lived there.

It’s an amazing thing when you are no longer looking at the world around you through the lens of a traveler. Instead, you’re a resident, somewhat forced to live and think and act like the people there do. You’re trying not to be the obvious outsider. I don’t know how to describe it very well, but Wisconsin was a lot more lowbrow than I was envisioning it. Especially coming from the leanest state, Colorado, to one of the most obese states.

Yes, I realize that’s not very polite, but it was culture shock. I found myself thinking: “That’s funny?” “We’re eating that for dinner?” “That’s entertainment?” Halfway through the summer though, words of wisdom came a guy at a bicycle shop. After discussing the area and such, he said: “In the end, it doesn’t matter where you’re living or what you’re out doing. What matters is who you’re with to make the adventure worthwhile.”

 It’s true. Sure, I may not have enjoyed what we were doing, or liked the area that much. However, I did thoroughly enjoy my company, and I should have been appreciating them all the while. They made me laugh, they were always up for doing new things and they were the friendliest and kindest people I think I have ever met.

And now that I’ve been away, guess who’s looking to move to Wisconsin after graduation?