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College of Design

Monday, May 27, 2013

Minneapolis for the Win!!

Well I am officially back in Minneapolis. It feels really nice to be somewhere so familiar. I am having a good time back on my bicycle, trying to remember the streets that are good for bikes, and the construction routes that are in the way. Two good sites I use are Cyclopath for a customized route and Minneapolis City of Lakes this one is a larger view of the Twin Cities bike-able streets.
911 memorial.jpg
I have to say Minneapolis is a manageable city. Going from Rome to Istanbul then to New York I fully realize and appreciate how easy this city can be to navigate, connect with and interact with, even if your just visiting. Although all these cities are amazing, historic, and engaging. Minneapolis is seriously beautiful and green. We have a good relationship with the natural elements. Thanks to landscape architects Charles Loring and Horace Cleveland
These two men designed and orchestrated the Twin Cities so that natural amenities are public areas. The chain of lakes, Hiawatha trails, Minnehaha, Mississippi River, and Theodore Wirth parks just to name a few, are publicly used spaces that are cared for by the city of Minneapolis. Thumbnail image for ladies pavilion.jpg
I saw some amazing places in New York City: the Ladies Pavilion and some meadows in Central Park. I visited the 9/11 Memorial (pictured). It was an amazing experience, although a bit cumbersome to enter. The memorial site is gorgeous, done by Davis Brody Bond and Snøhetta Architects. The memorial site is so subtle yet easy to use. There are electronic kiosks that help people find any name that as been etched into the side of these voids, there are 2. So if you lost someone that day you can look up their name placard easier, you can also donate money and view the map through these stations. Its a great site. I highly recommend a visit if you are in NYC!!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Final Farewell

While I'm not quite a graduate yet, I'll be saying farewell in this blog due to my busy summer away. I'll be back at the University of Minnesota in the fall, but will only be a part-time student due to the small number of classes I have yet to complete. My hope is that after a successful summer working and learning at my internship in Austin, I can return to Minneapolis to find a part time internship in the fall while I finish up the remainder of my courses and prepare for the graphic design senior show and graduation.

It's hard to believe, and not to mention a little terrifying, that by this coming December, I will be out in the real world searching for a full-time career. My experiences and education at the University of Minnesota have taken me unexpected places and given me many great opportunities. Above all, I greatly appreciate all of the personal connections I have made with design peers, professors, and design professionals in the Twin Cities area through classwork, events, interviews, and more. In the future, it is my network of design-centric friends and acquaintances that I will turn to for design and career advice.

The end of the semester sure came about quickly and I didn't do much hanging around before I was off again to visit with family and friends before leaving for Texas this summer. I was fortunate enough to spend a few days in St. Petersburg, Florida during finals week while my Dad was there for work. Finishing up some homework and work while enjoying the sunshine was quite relaxing. I am now currently en route to Austin, TX where I will be doing a 12 week internship at Springbox. Below is a picture of me on some cliffs above the Mississippi in Missouri.


I am very excited for what the summer has to offer and also to return to my friends and family in Wisconsin and Minnesota in the fall. I have very much enjoyed being able to share my CDes experiences on the student blog and hope that my writings have been both enjoyable and informative. Best of luck in all of your future endeavors and College of Design schooling!

Sean Mateer
Graphic Design

Friday, May 24, 2013

All Good Things Must Come To An End

Well friends, as of last Saturday, I have become a college graduate! I, along with 300 of my fellow College of Design peers, took the stage at Mariucci Arena to accept our diplomas in front of our closest friends and family. The ceremony was great; we had four great speakers, three of which were students. I really enjoyed hearing from my fellow students as they shared about all of what they have experienced, learned, and overcome while studying at the University. It was also wonderful to hear and relate to their outlook on the future and everything they were looking foreword to!

grad.jpgIt's interesting to think that my career as a college student is now officially over and that a new chapter in my life must soon begin! I have had such a wonderful time in college here at the University of Minnesota, so many great memories and great times that I will deeply miss. However, I know that there are plenty of new and exciting memories that await me as I move foreword in life!

The end of college, sadly, also means the end of my student blog posts to you guys, as I no longer will be a student. I have enjoyed sharing and writing about my college experiences with all of you and hope that they have been of some help! I wish you all the best as you embark on your college careers!

Sasenka - Retail Merchandising

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Day to Remember

Hello again!

This blog is the most special one because I am officially graduated! This past Saturday was the commencement ceremony for all the graduates of College of Design. Did I mention that I was one of the student speakers? It was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime moment. After the speech, I took a shameless selfie from the stage as a keepsake. Here is the photo for you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Shameless-Selfie after the speech

Left: with Lucie, our apparel design blogger. Right: architecture students

The University of Minnesota and the College of Design have given me so much in the past four years. I learned to appreciate and love all types of differences including knowledge, ideas, age, background, etc. I was able to create lifelong friendship and even lifelong mentorship. Not to mention the leadership skills, social skills, Knowing what I know now, the University of Minnesota will still be my first choice of school.

It is sad to say that this will be my last blog. However, there will be student bloggers who will consistently update blog this summer.

Beau S.
Architecture B.D.A.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Hello everyone! This will be my final blog entry, as I am officially done with college and have graduated with my degree! This past Saturday I participated in commencement with my entire graduating class of 2013, with the rest of the College of Design. It was a fun day, full of emotions and activities. The ceremony itself was split into sections by major, which meant that I was in line and graduated with my fellow apparel design majors, which was a great treat. It was a fun time to celebrate and share the experience with the girls that I have been with for the past 4 years and bonded with. Our graduation and commencement was also a great treat, because our college and graduating class is one of the smallest at the University of Minnesota. Our ceremony was more intimate than others and we got to share the experience with professors that we knew well, including faculty and others like the Dean of the college. We even got to hug all of our professors! This is something that I truly enjoyed in my time at the University and within the College of Design, the tight knit group of staff, professors and students that you become over the years. The college is small enough that you really get to share experiences with close friends and classmates, as well as professors, that you really feel care about you, as a student and as a person.

Below is a fun photo of my graduating class of apparel designers!

What's next for me, you may ask? Well, I have officially accepted a position as an assistnat designer for a small local swimwear company. I am very excited about the opportunity and can't wait to start! I will be working with a very small team (head designer, sample maker, manufacturing team, etc) to create and relaunch their current brand. The brand is one that I admire and has become near and dear to my heart and I can't wait to see where I can go with the company. The company is located here in Minnesota, so I will be staying around the cities for a while, although I will be relocated from St Paul to Minneapolis. I won't be blogging here anymore, but I will be around, so if you ever have any questions, feel free to post here, I'll be watching the blogs.

Thank you for reading!
Lucie, Apparel Design

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Ancient Smyrna, Constantinople and then the States

This week changed everything. I was traveling by myself in Turkey. Not something done by a lot of women apparently. But I got a very hospitable and warm welcome where ever I went. I began in Izmir, formerly known as Smyrna. A large city, possibly the 3rd largest city in Turkey in recent years. It has a completely different feeling than Istanbul. The city lines the Aegean Sea and used to have the streets lined in Greek style summer homes. However, the city created a boardwalk to line the sea, covered up the beaches, and tore down the majority of the two story homes that allowed the sea air to penetrate the city streets. Now 5 and 6 story mixed-use apartment complexes line the boardwalk, giving the city's edge a defined line. The city is most well known for the Clock Tower, Konak Ferry Station, and Agora.
Next I ventured off to Kusadasi, pronounced Kushadasuh. It is a beautiful beach town inhabited by local Turks, Kurds and Greek born Turkish people. It is very near to many Greek Islands, and the ownership of these islands is a hot topic for any Turk. The main beach is called Ladies Beach. It has a high volume of Irish and English tourists, many of which own property and vacation there regularly. I recommend staying in Kusadasi a couple nights, it is a good distance from Ephesus and many other archaeological sites around the Aegean Sea.
My vacation time was wonderful. I am now recently in the United States, visiting family and loved ones is New York. I will write you all about the things I'm up to this week soon.

Hope your first week of freedom is going well. Until next week!

Sarah S.
Landscape Design and Planning.
BED 2014

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Woah! I feel like an adult!

The weird part is I woke up one day and it just kind of happened. I woke up and just felt like an adult. Let Thursday, May 16th, 2013 go down in history.


A huge part of this sudden adulthood comes from working full time at my internship with Cuningham Group. I wake up at 6:30am Monday-Friday and work until 5:00pm. I get an hour lunch break in the mix of things where I can do a variety of things including grabbing a bite, sitting outside in the St. Anthony Main or Northeast areas, running errands, or working through it if things at work are busy enough. It's a big adjustment to make in comparison to life as a college student, but I'm really loving it so far.

The biggest difference in working full time is that once you show up to work, you're going and going and going from 8:00am-12:00pm, then you take your break (an hour), and then you come back and you're going and going and going again until approximately 5:00pm. After that you go home and have a huge chunk of free time until the next day and you also normally have a weekend that includes little to nothing about work, just emails here and there. Life as a college student goes all day, but it has lots of ups and downs mixed in. You go to class, then have a break to cruise BuzzFeed on your laptop, then you hop on the bus and head to your next class, then maybe you meet with your group about a new project that was just assigned, then you go home and watch some quality television followed by a coffee shop session to plow through your homework.

Both lifestyles are cool for different reasons, but having some variety in the summer months by actually having a set schedule of the things I must do is really nice. Other things that have me feeling like an adult include recently turning 21, applying for my first credit card, signing up for a gym membership, considering 401k options and starting auto-payments for my student loan debt (the last two with the help of my boyfriend who happens to be a business student).

Growing up is hard at times, but I won't lie and say it isn't fun too!

Ashley Ochiagha
Interior Design

Friday, May 17, 2013

MN Goes Green

Hello readers! As you may know, I am officially done with school and will be graduating this Saturday! Crazy how time flies! I wanted to let you know about a great event that is happening on Friday, that I will unfortunately (due to graduation) not be able to attend.

The event is called MN Goes Green, and is a fashion event dedicated to sustainable, responsible and eco-fashion. It is put on in collaboration with Sol-Inspirations which is a local organization that focuses on sustainable and responsible fashion within the Twin Cities. They regularly put on fashion shows, clothing swaps, and most recently a student scholarship competition. The competition was this past semester and had students from many local design colleges participate, including the University of Minnesota's College of Design. Crystal Compton, a current Junior in the program, actually won the competition and scholarship! Crystal and the other designer participants will be showing their creations and having them displayed at the MN Goes Green event this Saturday. There will also be energy displays and demonstrations on how to be more sustainable and eco-conscious in your own home. There also is a clothing swap, where you can trade gently used unwanted clothing for items from other donors that you perfer, as well as tailoring on the spot. Below is a photo of Crystal and her winning design and the link for more information about the event and tickets!


Lucie, Apparel Design

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Tying Up Loose Ends

It feels great to be done! Other than tying up a few loose ends with one of my jobs, I'm all done for the semester! The last few weeks were pretty crazy, but it sure feels great to be almost done with all of my semester class and work commitments. Last week, I finished my job as a student assistant at the Usability Lab, as well as my job as graphic designer and video producer at the College of Design Student Services. I've been so busy the last few weeks that I haven't been able to talk much about some of my class and work projects, so I'll wrap up the semester with a few fun projects I have been working on.

A few weeks ago, I talked a little bit about my personal project for my Interactive Design. I created a responsive design framework specifically for one page websites. If you do a lot of web surfing, you might find that one page sites have recently become popular for things like portfolios, restaurants, landing pages for new apps, and more. In order to differentiate my framework from others, I decided to cater it specifically to one page sites. You can check out the landing page I made for Structure, the name of my framework, and even download the template to create your own one page site. It's still a bit of a work in progress, but the existing downloadable template contains all the html and javascript you need to make a one page responsive site. The template contains minimal css styling so you can easily style the site how you please without a bunch of existing style and code getting in your way.

Another web project I have been working on outside of class is call Design High. It's a toolkit and set of workshops created in order to help high school art and communication teachers bring more design oriented thinking and activities into their classrooms. Design thinking is a great skill to have, and many advocate that it should be taught to everyone.


Well, that's all for now. As you can see above, I am currently down in Florida enjoying the sunshine and some time with my family before I head to Austin, TX for the remainder of the summer. Do you have any awesome summer plans? Let me know in the comments!

Sean Mateer
Graphic Design

The Value of a Good Advisor

Something that I have been very thankful for these past four years is having a good advisor. My advisor, Katrina Thompson, has literally been best; she has helped me sort out class schedules, look through study abroad options, determine which Minor I should choose, and so much more. A good advisor is of great value because he or she can make your time in college so much easier and less stressful with his or her abundant knowledge of the University and all that it offers.

One of the many times my advisor has been a great help to me was last fall (2011) when I was considering and looking at potential study abroad options. I last minute decided that I wanted to consider the option of studying abroad and need to figure out if I could do without prolonging my college career. I met with Katrina and she provided me with an assortment of study abroad programs and options; she helped me sort through classes, found alternative class options, and helped organize my potential class schedules all so I could study abroad if I wanted to! Unfortunately, I was unable to study abroad because of another obligation, my cousin's wedding, that happened to coincide with the semester I was planning to go during. Regardless, that situation allowed me to realize the value of a good advisor and made me really appreciate my particular one!

Sasenka- Retail Merchandising

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

It Is All Ending

Hello again!

Final Week is officially here. Rapson Hall, home of the architecture and landscape architecture majors has been super busy in the past few days. Master degree students and undergraduate students are presenting their works non-stop. It is definitely my favorite time of the semester because all the works that your peers and your teaching assistant (TA) have been working on are up on display. You get to see the result of their interest. There are many wonderful projects being presented. One of the classes in the BDA program presented their concrete modular variation. The full-scale project was installed outside Rapson Hall. Not to mention many master degree projects that students have been working through blood, sweat, tears, and it definitely show their commitment and care.

B.D.A. Modular Variations Studio

Meanwhile, my students at my internship at the homeless emergency housing also completed their art installation. Our program is called D3 which is a design-based teens program that blends the teen interests' with a community need and builds relevant projects around that need. For example, the bird installation in the lobby of People Serving People was created around the need for more meaningful visual element at PSP. The teens based their design off the idea of PSP guests being part of a larger community, flying in a V-formation toward a more stable and hopeful future. The 200 birds were hung up one by one and are now in the lobby of People Serving People.

Flying birds installation by my students at the homeless emergency housing

Last, my commencement ceremony is this Saturday, May 18th at Mariucci. I will be one of the speakers as well. So, feel free to stop by!

See you next blog!

Beau S.

Architecture B.D.A.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Synthesis, Process and Final Reviews

Reviews are done, although it truly does not feel like it yet. I need time to come down off the high of studio work. Time was, as is for any studio project, not on my side and I went a few nights in a row with very little sleep and a lot of caffeine. Now that I am "done" there is lots of time to chill and re-experience the city. Thumbnail image for me in the palacechairs.jpgfarewell dinner.jpgYesterday our amazing Accent Center director Deniz B. took us all out for a farewell dinner. It was in a neighborhood called the "women's bazaar" it sold a lot of cheese and honey. There were some cool streets with kids playing soccer, they didn't allow cars through. It was a fun time. The we went to the Pera Palace for dessert. It is a great hotel now, an 18th century morish influenced building. I got an delicious strawberry cake.Thumbnail image for stawberry cake.jpg
Today Rachel, Andrea and I went to Tophane to get haircuts, then walked to the train and went to Eminonu aka the Spice Bazaar stop. We literally went shopping to find extra luggage so that we have enough space for everything we have acquired throughout the trip. We have been so many places that ticket stubs, t-shirts, hookahs, and gifts have really added up! Now we are packing, some of us staying in the region for a bit longer and have to say goodbye to those who are leaving. Its a crazy time of transition. I think traveling, living and studying with the same 12 people has een one of the most intense experiences of my life. I learned a lot about myself and what I want out of life and my degree. Next year I will be starting the accelerated Masters of Landscape Architecture at UMN. I am really excited to have my own desk! and meet the people I will be working closely with for the next couple of years! Wow. One adventure to the next. I hope things are wrapping up for everyone well back at the U.

If anyone has any questions or wants to chat about the trip or the MLA please feel free to write me a question via the comments.

Until next time,

Sarah S.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Hi, Science!

Hello again!

Final week is approaching. I have less than a week to prepare myself for the last week of my undergraduate degree. The feeling is unreal. Because everyone have so much going on their plates in terms of projects, test, papers, and reviews, I decided to take a little break and recharge myself. Last week, my friend and I went to the Science Museum. Conveniently, our campus has MANY bus routes pass through. This allowed us to take public transportation directly from school to the Science Museum at a very low cost compare to a taxi or driving there. Another advantage that I have to mention is the student discount that you will get when carrying the University of Minnesota ID. We got a great discount rate for being a student. The Science Museum is not the only place you are able to use your ID to take advantage of student discount...or even free admission in most cases. Be sure to check out all the fun things around town such as theaters, restaurants, sport events, or even concerts.

science museum.jpg
Hanging out with the animals at the Science Museum. Photo by Nou H.

It was nice to take a little time off of our busy schedules to do something fun and recharge ourselves during the crazy time like this. Make sure you take care of yourself and do whatever necessary to keep a healthy mind and body, whether it is visiting the Recreational Center, or University Counseling and Consulting Services, or any other resources we have for you. Good luck with your finals!

See you next blog!
Beau S.
Architecture B.D.A.

When Push Comes to Shove

Ah yes, my favorite time of semester: the week all of your design projects are due.

Unless you are some kind of magical design wizard, there will likely be times in your school career where you need to make a decision on what projects are most important, and what ones you may need to sacrifice a little time on. While it's a tough decision to consciously choose to spend less time on a project than you would like, it's important to keep in mind that your ultimate goal should be to continually improve your portfolio work. One subpar project isn't going to effect you in the long run. Everything is a work in progress- it's extremely likely that even the project that you are most proud of can still be improved greatly. Take some time away from it and come back- you'll see a ton of areas in which it can be improved. If you run out of time on a project, think about what you can do to get the best grade possible and take notes on what you would like to come back to and improve later - though it's best to keep improving while the project is fresh in your head.

clear.pngI'm no stranger to picking and choosing my design battles, though when the clock is counting down, I do a few things to help me get as much done as possible.

1) Prioritize - I use the iPhone app Clear to keep track of what I need to get done in order. If I change my mind or something comes up, it's easy for me to reshuffle or add new priorities.

2) Set Deadlines - If you are really down to the wire with multiple projects, tell yourself you will spend no longer than 'X' minutes or hours iterating on a concept. It's easy to get sucked into a black hole of designing and redesigning a small aspect while often only improving it marginally. If I find that happening when I'm crunched for time, I set a timer on my phone and tell myself that I will be done with it when the time runs out. Often times the pressure for the timer actually helps me create something I'm satisfied with.

3) Stay Healthy and Hydrated - This one is super important. If you are pulling a few nights with little to no sleep while downing a bunch of coffee and energy drinks, offset it with some healthy snacks and a lot of water! You'll ultimately crash a lot sooner if you become dehydrated from all of the caffeine and salty snacks you are consuming - I've learned this the hard way!

Well, I need to get back to it. 24 more hours to get everything done! Good Luck with your final projects!

Sean Mateer
Graphic Design

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Target Project Finale!

Hello all! Today I wanted to share with you the details of our final project in it's entirety! This project, that I have blogged about previously in my posts, was a design collaboration with Target Corporation's Design and Product Development team. The assignment was to find a "white space opportunity" within an assigned floor pad. A "floor pad" is a type of apparel and design we were given, for example women's ready to wear or intimates/performance. Our flood pad was "big girls" or girls sizes 4-16, which is basically elementary aged girls. A "white space opportunity" is defined by Target as an area of the market that Target currently isn't tapping into. This could be unique to Target, as in other competitors are designing it and marketing it to customers, but Target hasn't caught on yet, or something that no one in the industry currently is carrying. Our white space that we identified was girls apparel that was in between basics and very girly almost "teen" clothing. We wanted to design something that little girls would want to wear, but that was also appropriate and appealing to their parents and adults in their life. We decided to pair with STEM, which stands for Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics, and is an organization that aims to introduce these fields to girls and get them more involved through after school programs and summer camps. We took inspiration from technology and science imagery to create our color palette and many of the style lines and prints used in the line.

We presented our project to Target Corporation last Thursday, and overall it went well! We received good feedback and our group was very happy with how everything turned out. It is also going to be a great portfolio piece, as we took a product line from inspiration to concept to production, and on to merchandising and advertising plan. Below are some images from the project!



Lucie, Apparel Design

This week is...

Hi friends! So this week is officially the last week of classes for me. EVER. But, just like the every other week of this past month, it is also quite a busy one. I have a final project for Screen Printing due tomorrow and my biggest final of the semester, in Marketing Research, is on Thursday. So with those classes on my brain, I thought I'd give you all a little update on each of them.

IMG_1309.jpgFor screen-printing I have been working with the design that I shared with you all in an earlier post and elaborating on it. Originally, when I printed that design on fabric, I only used one color. For this project, however, I printed the two design elements in two different colors; I also created an additional complementary design, which included some of my favorite verses. I then contrasted the fabric prints into pillows!

In Marketing Research, we just finished up our final group project and now it's crunch time for the final exam! I have been struggling in this class this whole semester and have been trying to study hard for this final because I know it's crucial for me to do well. And today, during our review session, I was able to confirm that I am actually starting to grasp it! Yay!

Well, that's my week: uneventful, but busy.

Sasenka -Retail Merchandising


PalladianHourglassz.tifThe big week has finally arrived everyone, and it's already half over! I can hardly believe it - only a few days left of regularly scheduled classes before my last round of final exams... and then commencement on May 18th at Mariucci Arena (due to Northrop Construction). As I sit here and think about it all, it seems surreal. However, my week up to this point has been rather chaotic as I've been scrambling to get everything finished up before the end of the week - multiple group projects, a giant timeline poster, a thirtysomething-page final research and analysis paper, an internship report and subsequent presentation, and a few other things that need final touches. It really is all coming down to this next few days, but I'm so close to the end of it all that the stress is of little concern at this point. Thinking back on it all, I should have expected this level of madness to ensue, taking a full course load, working two part-time student jobs and interning several days per week. All in all though, I'm glad I put in the hard work and powered through to the end - the whole experience has been the hardest I've never worked for something this hard in my twenty-two years of existence and it will feel quite gratifying to walk across that stage and earn my Bachelor of Science in just a matter of days.

As all of this aforementioned ridiculousness was in full swing this past few weeks, I've been completely at a loss for freetime, which I had originally planned on using to do a bit of job searching. That's what I got this degree for, right? Well, I have taken a very limited number of brief homework/working/eating/sleeping breaks to fill out a few job applications which struck my interest, but if there's one thing I've learned as a jobseeker its that finding a job is a full-time job. On the bright side, it is evident that there are definitely jobs out there for housing students and I will fearlessly continue the job hunt until my work pays off.

Life is happening!!!

Jesse LaMaack
B.S. Housing Studies

Monday, May 6, 2013


935307_10151366712212187_836550953_n.jpgThis past weekend I made my big debut as a model! It was a super exciting experience and I hate a lot of fun.

I was modeling for RED: [Super] High Fashion, a fashion show put together by a group on campus called Fashion & Business, or FAB. They work hard every year to create a theme and concept for their annual fashion show. From there they recruit apparel designers (many of them are students from the College of Design). The designers find their models and create their looks, then after all of the fancy show production details are set, it's time for the runway! This year each designer created three looks: one superhero, one villain, and "the cape". It was really cool seing how every designer had a different take on the three looks and the end results were so impressive.

I love being in the College of Design because I have met so many amazing people from various majors. Because we're such a tight knit community, I'm friends with students from all of the different majors. That's how I met Tess Ross, the designer I modeled for and if I hadn't met her, I probably wouldn't have had the opportunity to model in a fashion show.

It was such an awesome rush of endorphins and I really loved the whole experience. Hopefully I'll be able to model again sometime!

Until the next one,

Interior Design

Thursday, May 2, 2013

At a Loss for Words

This past week has been filled with many unforeseen obstacles, one of those weeks where everything just seems to being going wrong. There have been many hurdles that have come my way; however, I'm only going to tell you about one them, the one that really humbled me and showed me that sometimes things don't go as planned.

microphone.jpgLast Thursday, I had a group presentation for my Marketing Research final project. The day before, my group and I had split up our speaking roles; I took on one of the bigger roles, assuring my group that public speaking was one of my strengths. The next day during the presentation however, my nerves got the best of me and my mind went completely blank right as I was about speak! I have stumbled over words in speeches and presentations before, but never actually forgotten everything! I was a little embarrassed, but mostly, I felt bad because of what I had assured my group the day before.

After the class, I knew that I needed to apologize to my group members; they were all pretty understanding and assured me that nerves sometimes get the best of us. I understood this, but was worried that my group would get panelized for my little mishap. So when I got home, I e-mailed my professor immediately; I apologized for my inability to speak during the presentation and asked if there was anything I could do to redeem the situation. She too assured me that it wasn't as bad as I thought, but that if I wanted too, I could come in during her office hours and share what I originally intended to. I did.

This situation really humbled me and showed me that sometimes things don't always go as planned; but, that doesn't mean that the situation is un-redeemable. When things go wrong, we often want the quick solution or try to forgot the incident completely. However, what this situation taught me is that owning up your failures and taking initiative to move foreword can often be the first step in allowing a situation to be redeemed.

Sasenka - Retail Merchandising

Photo Credit:

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Cheers, Mr. Mayor!

rybak00876.jpgToday I gave a commemorative speech to my public speaking class honoring the mayor of Minneapolis, R.T. Rybak - a great man and true go-getter. He's been our faithful mayor since 2001 and is currently serving his third consecutive term in office. Rybak is definitely one of my local heros, and most of us here in Minneapolis were sad to hear that he will not be seeking re-election for 2014.

R.T. Rybak has been progressive from the start, and is most known for his initiatives which have visibly reduced crime rates in the city, created a flow of new jobs, and assisted in the creation of affordable housing units for low-income households and families. He's also gained national attention as an activist and beloved local leader. While his popularity was thought by many to land him a role in higher political office, he stated in an interview in 2011 that "local government is the last standing functional form of government in America and possibly the world." He's also a genuinely great guy to be around - probably the only mayor who has crowd surfed at a major public event (Trampled by Turtles at First Avenue in 2004).

Have a great week everyone!

Jesse LaMaack
Housing Studies, B.S.