Thursday, April 28, 2016

Tiny Dancers Perform Spring Recital With Ferrum College Students

By Sarah Hendrix

Dr. Shannon Hardwicke’s Organization and Administration of Sports (HHP 402) class completed a semester long project, in which we developed, instructed, and showcased a dance program. With the leadership of Michael Rucinski and in partnership with the Ferrum YMCA, Ferrum’s Tiny Dancers was formed. Local children had the opportunity to go through 11 weeks of rehearsal, and then a recital in which five dances were performed. Each week, HHP 402 students and Michael met with two different classes of three children each, split based on age and grade, and every other Saturday, the recital was rehearsed. The HHP 402 students taught these classes on a three-week rotation, with facilitation from Michael.

All of the hard work led to the recital that took place on Friday, April 15th. The recital was at 7 p.m. and lasted about thirty minutes, with five dances being performed. The “Birthday Song,” by Katy Perry was performed first with the whole 402 class and also all of the children dancing in this performance. The other songs that the 402 class danced in were “Thriller,” by Michael Jackson and “Men In Black,” by Will Smith. The younger girls danced in “Men In Black” and “Dance With Me Tonight,” by Olly Murs, while the older girls danced in “Country Girl,” by Luke Bryan and “Thriller.” 

We were able to talk to one of the parents and director of the Ferrum YMCA, Kameron Kitts, after the dance recital, this is what he said, “It was really good considering what we had, it wasn’t a huge crew and we didn’t have but a few months to put something together. I think everybody did a good job! There was a whole team effort there, much more than what I was anticipating when I first reached out to Dr. Hardwicke about the program.” The recital was very nice and had several parents and students in attendance who were able to enjoy the reception afterwards that was held by the HHP 402 class.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Spring Break Alternative: Living "Not Self, But Others" in Washington, DC

Article by Ferrum College student Sarah Patnaude.

As an alternative to spring break this year, Dr. Jan Nicholson Angle, Dr. Shannon Hardwicke and Ferrum College students Nicholas Padden, Sarah Patnaude, James Ridley, and Kaelyn Williams went to Washington, DC to learn more about Ferrum College's Methodist heritage and live out our motto, "Not Self, But Others."

Throughout the week, we attended social justice seminars at the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society. Topics of discussion focused on human trafficking, child advocacy, and poverty while weaving in the concepts of mercy and justice. Through devotions, films, speakers, activities, and discussion, we were challenged in our understanding of these issues and the effects they have on the individual as well as the community.

As our understanding deepened, our responsibilities came to light. In addition to brainstorming ways individuals, Ferrum College, and the community can extend God's grace to those in these circumstances and enact change to minimize the prevalence of the issues, we put our motto into action with a service project. On Thursday afternoon, we participated in Martha's Table "Joy Market", a program that provides meals to children and their families through a farmer's market style set up. This ensures that families have access to healthy food while still allowing them to have the feeling of freedom and independence as they make their way around the different stations.

Of course, the trip to our nation's capital wouldn't be complete unless we ate amazing food, had fun adventures on the Metro, and visited a historic landmark, Ford's Theater.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Sharing My Spanish Culture & Language on Campus

From Madrid to Ferrum: Fulbright Adventures in the U.S.

¡Hola! Loads of new events have been happening on campus these days!

The Fulbright program seeks to form leaders who share their knowledge and culture, are open to new ideas, and are committed to international engagement, this is why, apart from teaching my language, my duty is also to promote my culture on campus as well as learn from the American culture. This is when the experience becomes truly enriching for the Fulbrighter.

I am teaching two different Spanish classes, so we could say that in some way I am sharing my culture, however, just my students get the chance to learn from my experience. Therefore, in order to promote my culture and my language on campus, I have been keeping myself busy! Now, I have my own radio show in Spanish and English. You can listen to Habla español on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. on Ferrum Radio. Each week, different guests come to share their experiences with all our amigos. On our first show, Jessa was talking about her experience studying abroad, and she encouraged everyone to do the same if they want to have an amazing experience (just like she did!) Last week, Clifton explained how he became interested in learning Spanish, and the impact his Spanish teacher had on him before coming to Ferrum to major in Spanish. In every show you can listen to music from different Spanish-speaking countries, for example, bachata, salsa, pop, and rap. Also, we discuss what is happening outside our borders, and there is some time for a short poem in Spanish from one of the important authors of the literature in Spanish, such as Rubén Darío or Antonio Machado.

Not only the radio has been keeping me entertained. Last Tuesday I gave a talk about Spain: “España in 10 questions”. We discovered interesting facts about Spain. For examples, Spain was the fourth country in the world to legalize gay marriage and bullfighting is not as popular as it might be expected.

I will give another talk about Spain in March, so I hope to see you all there! And  tune in to our Spanish show, Habla español every Tuesday at 11 a.m. on Ferrum Radio.

See more of my photographs here.

Friday, February 5, 2016

From Madrid to Ferrum: Six Months of Fulbright Adventures in the U.S.

Christmas at Ferrum College¡Hola! It’s been six months since I arrived to Ferrum! Six months full of first times: my first time in the United States, my first Día de los muertos, my first Thanksgiving, my first Christmas away from home, and the first time I got stuck at home due to the snow!!! Different experiences that have changed me and that have made me enjoy life in a different way.

Since I did not go home for Christmas, during the Winter Break I was traveling around the United States: Washington DC, Minnesotta, New Orleans, Houston, Austin, San Antonio and Dallas. I got the chance to visit old friends and also to make new friends.
Kayaking down the Colorado River

In Washington I attended a Fulbright conference in which I gave a presentation about how to teach Spanish with other Spanish FLTAs. The conference was amazing, 401 people from all over the world who are currently teaching their home languages in the States. In Minnesota I spent Christmas with one of my dearest friends, Amanda. After, I went to the South with my friend Francesca, who is an Italian FLTA in North Carolina. We visited some other FLTAS who are teaching Turkish and Russian in Austin, Tx.

Now that we are already in the second semester, I am so looking forward to teaching my new classes and to the new challenges. I am really looking forward to doing a bit more traveling here in Virginia.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

From Madrid to Ferrum: Fulbright Adventures in the U.S.

Fulbright Spanish Language Assistant Esther Pescador de Galdo found a new home at Ferrum College for the 2015-16 academic year.

¡Hola! My name is Esther. I arrived at Ferrum College two months ago to teach Spanish. I am from Madrid, Spain. This is my first time in the United States, and so far, the experience is going great!

I did my undergrad in Translation and Interpreting in Madrid and I also did a master’s degree in Applied Linguistics in Dublin (Ireland). I love languages, traveling, getting to know new cultures, peoples, traditions… and this is one of the reasons I decided to apply for a Fulbright Scholarship to come to the United States. I never thought I would be accept it but here I am!!! I believe traveling is the best way to learn and that’s what I like doing.

My journey in the States started on August 16, 2015, at Stanford University in California, where I had an orientation for four days. There I got to meet other Fulbrighters from different countries including Uruguay, Kenya, Uzbekistan, India and others. It was an amazing experience. We had different sessions in order to get introduced to the American culture, we also learned about teaching our languages, we visited San Francisco, participated in different events.

After that, I arrived at Ferrum College. My first impression was: what am I going to do here for fun? Ferrum is very different from the big cities of Madrid and Dublin. However, it has in common with my previous experiences that people are really friendly and welcoming. Since the very first day people have been really kind to me and always make me feel they are happy I am here.

Now I am teaching Spanish 101 and I participate in the Spanish Club on campus. I will be here until the end of May, so hopefully my experience will continue to be this excellent!

See photographs from my time in the United States here.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

From Spain Back to Ferrum and Onward

by Delana S., Panther Blogger

Whew!  It has been forever since I last blogged and things have been crazy.  Since my time in Spain, I returned back to the United States on December 20th.  Let me say that it felt so good to see my family in person; we did Skype all the time while I was in Spain, but it is vastly different.  From there, I prepared myself to come back to Ferrum and become reacquainted with speaking and hearing English again every day.  Coming back to the United States was not a huge adjustment for me, but that is only because I am used to moving and traveling around a lot.  In Spain, I learned a lot about myself and was able to be myself all the time.  I made lots of friends and I keep in touch with them regularly.

My friends Song and Sarah B.

My best friends in the program -
Felle and Sarah
My usual group of friends
My Alicatina friends
My host mom Andrea

Dinner with my classmates

Christmas celebrations

My co-worker and I
after my return home
Just thinking about it, I talked to a few of my friends a couple of days ago and they told me that some of the friends that I made had asked about me and that makes me happier than most people would think.  I made a home for myself over there and a family that I cannot wait to go see againI also talk to my host mom often and keep her updated with what's going on in my life.  Coming back to Ferrum was a bit strange for me because I am a different person and I grew up a little bit more, but knowing who I am makes all the difference.

New look for me
Since the start of this semester, I've had a lot to do and it has kept me really busy!  For starters, I am writing my senior thesis in Spanish about Flamenco, which I learned during my time abroad.  It is a fascinating and intriguing dance with a complicated history; I've had a lot of fun researching it, though at times, it is challenging.  In general, I've had 5 classes, with one being a half-semester science course, so now I have four classes including the thesis class.  It would seem that I should have some time to enjoy the rest of this semester with minimal work, but I am writing another thesis paper in Spanish focused on literature, and a small thesis paper for a history class.  It is a good thing that I like to write or that would be a struggle!  At this point, I am almost done with those papers, but I also have other events that I have to prepare for, such as "Put Cuffs on Cancer," Spring Fling, and a variety of events for seniors.  Graduation isn't that far away now, but at the same time, it is.  It's funny to think about how time has flown by so fast, but yet I still remember coming to Ferrum and beginning my freshman year.  Well there is more that I have to do until that point, but stay updated to read how it all ends here...though in reality, it is only the start of a new adventure!