Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Adventures in Granada, Spain

by Delana S., Panther Blogger

As another part of the program, we went to Granada, where we toured the city, saw a flamenco show, and stayed in a four-star hotel.  Talk about being a little fancy on our trip (hahaha), but it was really beautiful! 
When we first arrived, we checked into our hotel and then headed into the center of the city, where we then split off into groups to go explore and find places that interested us.  That night, we went to the Alhambra to see some parts of it.

My friend Devin and me
My group consisted of my friend Devin and me because smaller groups are sometimes better than big ones.  We went to a tea restaurant, which also had sweets, and we sat and talked.  It was a very relaxing atmosphere and there weren't a lot of people.  We were in an alley with lots of shops at this point, so we also got some shopping done and explored what these shops in Granada had to offer.  Just to make sure I mention it, Granada means pomegranate, which do grow there.

The beautiful city of Granada

An alley of many shops

La Alhambra at night

La Alhambra was absolutely amazing during the night and even more captivating and mesmerizing during the day.  I have no words to describe what I saw, but you may be able to get a sense of it because I do have a lot of amazing and gorgeous pictures of the buildings, the gardens, and the views of the city.
Besides just touring the city, we also went to a Flamenco show, which blew me away!  It was passionate, intense, and I couldn't look away for any part of it.  Since my thesis focuses on Flamenco, I tried to talk to some of the dancers, but it was not very productive because Flamenco is such a big part of who they are that it was hard for them to answer my questions.  I don't blame them for that though because based off of my research, you start learning Flamenco at a young age and then it is something that is always part of who you are.  I am taking a Salsa/Flamenco class here and it is definitely not easy!  The salsa part I have down, but Flamenco is a bit more technical since both sides of your body eventually do the same thing, but you also have to focus on your arms and your movements.  It is very interesting to learn, and I know that I will try to demonstrate it for my friends when I come back home.  Plus, I also promised my mom that I would show her a few of my new moves. She just laughed at me and nodded.

Overall, Granada was a relaxing trip and helped us get a break from our studies and exams.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

From Freshman to Senior Year

by Stephanie D., Panther Blogger

Going into my freshman year at Ferrum College, I never thought I would succeed as much as I did.  Freshman year is all about adjustment to life on your own, new people, and new living conditions.  Luckily, this was all made very easy by the faculty and staff.  I've been a cheerleader since my freshman year, and playing a sport really got me on track.  Not only did it get me on campus a week early, which helped me learn the college better, but it also provided structure in my day-to-day routine.  I was able to attend team study halls, which helped with my grades, and I made friends with upperclassmen.

Now, it's my senior year and I have been accepted into Radford University's Criminal Justice Graduate Program!  I could not have done this without the preparation that Ferrum has given me. The outstanding resources, the academic atmosphere, and the faculty who helped me get to where I wanted to be really showed me that dreams could come true.  I am so thankful for the experience that Ferrum gave me as an undergraduate that I would recommend Ferrum to any and every senior in high school I meet.

From freshman year to senior year, there were bumps along the way, but at Ferrum, the motto is "Not Self, But Others" and this was implemented by my peers and professors to help me succeed and get the most I could out of my education.  I couldn't be more excited to graduate and further my education at Radford, but I will truly be heartbroken when I miss Ferrum because this is where I found who I'm supposed to be.  I can't wait to call myself a Ferrum alumna!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

"Stacks for the Kids" Fundraiser with ZXE

by Brett W., Panther Blogger

On November 3rd, Zeta Chi Epsilon was making stacks on stacks...of pancakes!  This sorority that I "sweetheart" for has a fundraiser every semester for our philanthropy, The Child Advocacy Center in Rocky Mount. The fundraiser is called Stacks for the Kids.  It's held in Confetti's, which is on the bottom floor of Bassett, a dorm on campus.  Confetti's has everything from a kitchen to couches to big screen TVs!  Tickets were sold in the Franklin Hall atrium for a couple of weeks before the event.  A $2 ticket got the purchaser a plate of three pancakes or wait what...three waffles!  Tickets became $3 at the door, $1 for another plate once they were there, and 100% of the proceeds went to the philanthropy.

The night started off wonderfully with the Bassett fire alarm going off at 7 p.m. (the intended start time of the fundraiser), but finally we were able to get back down there and keep cooking!  ZXE provided all of the toppings, such as butter, syrup, whipped cream, strawberries, bananas, and even had coffee with all of the fixings.

A wide variety of people showed up, from students to professors to family, and at the end of the night, we raised enough money to donate $100 to the Child Advocacy Center of Rocky Mount.  A professor who is on the Advising Panel for this organization said she could not have been more pleased with what we were doing and how much it meant to her and the children.

Overall, the night was filled with fun and excitement, as well as the joy of knowing we were doing something good for others just like Ferrum's motto says: "Not Self, But Others."  So be on the lookout each semester here on out for campus mail talking about Stacks for the Kids, and I hope to see everyone there!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

An Introduction to New Blogger, Amanda!

by Amanda R., Panther Blogger

Hi, everyone!  My name is Amanda and I am a new member to the Panther Blog Team!  I am really excited about this new experience.  I was raised on a farm in a small town called Lawrenceville, Virginia (about an hour south of Richmond).  I graduated from Park View High School in May 2013.  At the same time as my high school graduation, I also graduated from our community college with my Associate's Degree.  While at Ferrum, I am majoring in Health and Human Performance for Physical Education with a minor in Coaching.  Because I am so involved and interested in my major, I became the secretary of our Physical Activities Club on campus.  I also play on the softball team as a pitcher and third baseman, and I plan on playing all four years I am here.

When looking into colleges, I had no idea where I wanted to attend.  Mainly, I was looking at smaller schools for softball.  After narrowing down my choices and visiting them, I knew Ferrum was my future home.  I grew up in a small, country area and Ferrum just felt like a second home to me.  The campus itself is truly beautiful in every season. Whether it's the leaves changing on the trees or the snow covering the mountains, it is always an amazing sight.

If you talk with someone from Ferrum and they tell you there is "nothing to do," it is because they are not going out and involving themselves!  There is so much to do and be involved with on campus.  With so many athletic teams and intramural sports, you can keep yourself busy!  Sports don't interest you?  Join the theater program or one of our other activity groups!  Being bored on campus is a choice you make.  When someone asks me if I made the right choice by coming to Ferrum, I always tell them I couldn't have picked a better school for me!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Weekend Trips, Bonding Time, and Exploring Madrid

By Delana S., Panther Blogger

Since the last time I wrote, a lot has happened!  My friend Annie and I spent our long weekend in Madrid checking out the city, exploring the sites, and making new friends.  It was not my first time in Madrid, but since she wanted to take a trip with me and eventually go to Madrid, I agreed and I am glad that I did.  Three of our other friends from our program met us there, along with some French girls that we have gotten to know during our time here.

We stayed at a hostel that was central in the city in the sense that from there, you could walk to everything and get anywhere that you needed to.  It was called Las Musas and it was very nice! The hostel gave us a variety of activities to participate in:  pub crawls, flamenco shows, walking tours of the city, and more.  The staff were all so nice and were thoroughly surprised that we knew Spanish so well.  That really allowed us to make friends, and they gave us all the information that we wanted on where to go, where to eat, and things of that nature.  We stayed in Madrid for three days and four nights.

My friend Annie and me
Night number one was spent resting, interacting with the other people staying at the hostel, and getting to know the area we were staying in.  That in itself was an adventure, but that's how I like to live.  The next day was spent checking out all of the great artwork in el Museo Nacional Del Prado (Prado Museum).  It was great that we decided to do that because it rained off and on the entire day, but luckily, we were inside where it was nice and dry.  I remember going to the Prado before, but it was great going to tour it again with my friend and finding pieces that we really and truly enjoyed.  After that, we spoke with some of the people from the area and they told us about a unique little restaurant that had amazing food.  Annie and I were very happy with what we ended up ordering, and the employees were very funny and welcoming.  They thought that we were pretty amusing as well, since the whole time we were there, we spoke in a mix of English and Spanish, depending on what we were talking about.  That night, we participated in a pub crawl and met lots of new people from all over the world, but there were especially a lot of Australians.

Royal Palace view from the gardens

My friends Meriem, Felle, and me

The next day, we met up with our friends at the Palacio Real (Royal Palace of Madrid), walked around a little bit in the gardens, and enjoyed our time together.  How vastly different our lives are now due to our experiences here and meeting one another!  I know that I at least have 30 or so new friends on Facebook, and many of them are from here in Spain, Ireland, France, or other countries.

My friend Alex and me
View from the Reina Sofia

We then went on to explore the Museo Nacional de Arte Reina Sofia (Reina Sofia National Art Museum) and looked at all of the great works there.  The most amazing piece was a painting by Picasso that took up the whole room!  It was magnificent and one of the best parts of touring the museum.  That was my second time there and I highly recommend that travelers to the capital go visit it.  Other than that, it was a nice train ride home and doing homework for class the next day.  Well, until next time!  :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Great Experience at the VAHPERD Conference!

by Amanda Roberts, Guest Blogger
Hi, everyone!  My name is Amanda and I am in my second year here at Ferrum College. I am a Health and Human Performance major for Physical Education, and I have a minor in Coaching.  I am the Physical Activities Club Secretary and am also a member of Ferrum's softball team.

On Nov. 7th, twelve of my classmates and I traveled to Virginia Beach for a Virginia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (VAHPERD) Conference for the weekend.  This conference is for Physical Education teachers to explore and learn about different teaching strategies to use in their own classrooms. I attended multiple sessions throughout the weekend, but one of my favorites was watching a new sport called Spikeball.

Our class presented "Ballroom Dancing in Physical Education."  Ballroom dancing is an excellent method to train the body and improve coordination.  This presentation focused on introducing basic ballroom dance steps into PE classes.  From recent studies, we have learned that many school systems are removing dancing from their Physical Education departments, especially partner dancing.  We demonstrated different dances, including the Cha-Cha, Slow Waltz, and Tango, to name a few.  The feedback we received from the members attending the session was amazing!  Many attendees wanted the link to our video to teach their own classrooms.

My partner, Jesse Wall, and I before our performance

We also had two other students, Michael Rucinski and Melva Herron, who performed in the Kaleidoscope Dance Performance on Saturday night.  They choreographed their own routine while putting a twist on ballroom dancing with modern music. The video can be viewed below or by following this link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrHu-PsTuC8&feature=youtu.be

Overall, I loved attending the conference. We had the privilege to interact with teachers all over the state of Virginia.  By having the opportunity to do this, I know that choosing to be a Physical Education teacher is the right path for me. I can't wait to attend another conference in the future!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Getting Plugged In With Ministries On and Off Campus

by Caleb T., Panther Blogger

Being involved in local church and in campus ministries at Ferrum has been a huge part of my time at Ferrum College!  Check out my video about spiritual life and campus ministries at Ferrum College - and sorry about the wind in the video!

Just in case you can't view the video here, try visiting the link on YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qdW8_Bxwvw