Student Writing:
Exploring New Frontiers

Let’s face it: a lot of what you see when you pull up a college’s website has very little to do with the day-to-day experiences of the students who attend that college. Marketing, parking maps and guest lecturers do not a campus make.

Fortunately, many schools have given their students the chance to share their college experience in the form of student blogs. There are many genres of these blogs, covering a bunch of aspects of campus life. Here are some more examples of the types of student writing that our local schools have to offer. (Missed part one? Check it out here).

Study Abroad Journals:

Every school has study abroad programs, and many allow their explorers to chronicle their adventures on the campus website. Jenny, a student at Arcadia University who traveled to Tanzania through the College of Global Studies, uses her platform to describe her experiences at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, where she saw a man convicted of acts of genocide. She discusses the moral discomfort she felt as she watched this man, who may well have been responsible for thousands of deaths, be convicted on evidence that she, and the other members of her group, felt was spotty.

In addition to these sorts of visceral and immediate experiences, studying abroad allows American students to immerse themselves in foreign cultures, and gain an understanding of the way that those cultures react to global stories and issues. Daniel Tedesco, a Drexel student spending time in China, took the time in April to examine the Jeremy Lin story from a Chinese perspective. His discussion of Chinese citizenship and nationalism would be impossible without the weeks and months he had spent being surrounded by the culture.

Miscellaneous:

While many types of student writing are easily categorized into common types, sometimes you’ll stumble upon a blog that doesn’t fit so neatly. Such is the case with Moore College’s collection of Student Journals, which focus on giving their students a showcase for their artwork. Tessa Guze, a 2D fine arts major, has a collection of her paintings and sketches up on her blog, including more than a few that I’d love to have hanging on my wall (like this one, which seems like something out of an excellent children’s book.)

Another boundary-breaking (in more ways than one) student writing collection is Ursinus College’s LGBTQIA Connection blog. Here, members of the LGBTQIA community of all gender identities and sexual orientations find a safe space in which to discuss LGBTQIA issues on campus. Alexis, one of the bloggers, examines the social constructions of the Ursinus campus, and the ways in which LGBTQIA rights and concerns still lag behind, even on a campus that has made LGBTQIA advocacy a priority. These sorts of venues can allow for commentary that thoughtfully examines the strengths and weaknesses of a school’s equality efforts.

You can contact Wesley Brown at wbrown3@villanova.edu.

Top 5 Philly Career Postings

Photo © Campus Philly

Here are this week’s top 5 career postings on campusphilly.org/career.

1. Applied Card Systems: Reconciliation Accountant

Perform summary cash reports and reconcile all cash accounts as well as other exciting accounting tasks at this full-time paid position with Applied Card Systems.

2. Urban Igloo: Leasing Agent

Put your matchmaking skills to the test hooking up Philly renters and landlords with real estate agency Urban Igloo. You’ll talk renters through finding their perfect Philly apartment, oversee the background check and lease signing process, as well as updating their web database and coordinating new listings. Also, (and excuse our French) it pays bank.

3. GPTMC: Web Marketing Intern

Work for local non-profit Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, making Philadelphia and The Countryside a premier destination through marketing and image building that increases business and promotes the region’s vitality (like, ahem, yours truly). As an intern, you’ll be working with their Web Team on a variety of projects, gaining exposure to work on web content, blog posts, web development, web design, social media, mobile, email marketing and more.

4. AthenianRazak LLC: Junior Accountant

AthenianRazak is looking for an entry-level accountant to  compile monthly reports as well as undergo other exciting accounting projects. If you’re interested in property accounting, this could be a great first step!

5. The Rock School for Dance Education: Marketing Intern

No, this isn’t Jack Black’s School of Rock, but it’s the next best thing. Put in 15-20 hours a week helping market this local school centered on the arts for children. Perfect for recent PR grads or current students!

You can contact Magali Roman at maga.roman@temple.edu.

Fabric Row: Dusting
Off An Old Gem

Is there fashion in Philly? How about 100 years worth!

For over a century, 4th St. between South and Catherine has been famous for its fabric stores and pushcarts which sold colors and styles usually unavailable outside New York or Hong Kong. It all started in the early 1920s, when immigrants who settled made a living by selling fine fabrics. Although the pushcarts no longer exist, some of the original stores are entering their third and fourth family ownership! Don’t you just love the history in Philadelphia? 

Recently the South Street Headhouse District hosted its first Familiarization Tour (FAM Tour) of Historic Fabric Row. Among design professors, artists, students and members of the local design community stood me (an English major with no fashion experience but a HUGE interest in Philadelphia’s culture).

Mike Harris, Executive Director of the South Street Headhouse District said, “We are very excited about reintroducing this section of  the South Street Headhouse District to the residents and to the many design programs here in Philadelphia.”

The tour was led by Rakia Reynolds, Skai Blue Media‘s founder and Philly 360° Fashion Ambassador.  Reynolds claims she is a cheerleader for fashion in Philadelphia, making her the perfect hostess of the birthplace of fashion in the city.

The first store of the tour was Bus STOP Boutique, owned by London-born Elena Brennan. Brennan has had the store for five years, and brings shoes from hard-to-find designer labels and styles. Voted “Best Shoes” by Philadelphia magazine, this is definitely a store that all shoe lovers should check out. Brenna offers 10% off shoes with Student ID and also accepts the Campus Philly discount card!

The next stop was Follicle, an urban, chic hair boutique that specializes in customized couture hair design. Owner Francesca Rivetti says, “I look at clients like a fresh canvas, and no two sets of hair are the same.” Rivetti says that moving to Fabric Row completed her vision of looking at hair as fabric. Here you will find 20% off hair care products with Student ID.

Next up was Jack B’s Fabrics, a family owned and operated business for three generations that started out as a small room and has grown into its huge current location. Owner Rose Blumenthal states, “Anything that you don’t find from here, forget it.” As I walked through Jack B’s I understood her statement. The store is almost like a maze carrying a vast selection of cottons, silks, velvets, chenilles, wools, spandex, along with laces and peau de soie. Student discount is provided at the register with Student ID.

Marmelsteins was the next store we went into as well as the oldest. This store which carries fine fabrics and decorative trimmings among other retail items, has been in Fabric Row for 90 years! If you ask me, a celebration is in order. Marmelsteins offers 10% off fabrics with Student ID.

Our last stop was the funky Fabrics on 4th where designer and owner Mr. James let us know they’ve had the oddest selection of fabrics since 1985. His bright and youthful collection attracts the young designer’s eye. He explains, “Every new thing that comes out we’ll run and try to get it.” Fabrics on 4th offers 20% off all fabrics with Student ID.

Mr. James said, “The fabric business is a love for me.” It is this love for fabric that has created a world of creativity of many kinds which has evolved in a variety of stores. Today, Fabric Row is a place where one can shop and dine while indulging in Philadelphia’s unique and colorful history.

So come shop, come eat, and definitely check out the fabric stores. Just in case you were wondering, as Rakia Reynolds would answer, “Yes, there is fashion in Philadelphia.”

You can contact Camille Padilla at camiplati@gmail.com.

Philly Painting

Image © MuralArts.org

If you’ve ever stepped foot in a Philadelphia street, chances are you’ve bumped into a mural. Under the belief that art incites change, local national treasure Mural Arts has been making over some of Philly’s most unappreciated spaces since  1984. With a wide variety of projects including schools, street facades, and commercial strips already under its belt, Mural Arts is turning their attention to the residents and shopkeepers of Germantown  Avenue in North Philadelphia through the Philly Painting initiative. Funded by the City Commerce Department, Philly Painting seeks to revitalize a section of Germantown Avenue spanning four blocks of commercial ground, with a little help from professional artists and community members.

Internationally-renowned Dutch artists Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn have seen first-hand how art can work as a tool towards renovating and eventually saving neighborhoods in decline. After getting their start decorating the favelas in Rio de Janeiro, where they transformed some of Rio’s worst slums with rainbow shades and designs, the duo -better known as Haas & Hahn– seem up for the task. “It’s pretty sweet to see that something that you created in Brazil would actually find a translation in something in North America ” says Urhahn, speaking on-site from where he oversees over twenty community members who are getting involved in revamping their area. Through Philly Painting, otherwise inexperienced workers are finding job opportunities and training with a project that not only stimulates the area economically, but also brightens their own futures. “It’s cool to see how they start from not knowing how to hold a brush to knowing how to operate lifts and understanding what we’re going to do,” says Urhahn. “For most of them it’s a chance to start a professional career.”

Hopes are high that with this effort, businesses on the strip will climb out of their current decline and economically revitalize the community itself. “It is a really amazing way that city government [is] thinking outside the box and using art to help change the neighborhood.” says Cari Feiler Bender, who represents non-profit organizations including Mural Arts.

The response, though wary at first, soon grew explosively supportive. “People here have gotten so many promises and so little actual results that people were just numb.” explains Urhahn. “If there’s something that people don’t have here, it’s business, and they get really sick of people coming in with clipboards and surveys. There’s a lot of money spent on this area doing surveys, but very little action to be seen.” Fast-forward six months, and Urhahn routinely gets stopped on the street by community members thanking them for the work they’re doing.

The secret to their success may be the belief in group effort. Instead of designing the entire thing themselves, Urhahn and Koolhaas developed a general vision and called upon the community members to help them execute it, going round local businesses and helping the owners choose from a wide range of colors to decorate their individual spaces. The outcome is a Mondrian-esque palette of different color strips that will be painted on over 100 buildings over the area. “We’re not really muralists in the way mural arts make murals,” explains Urhahn.  “We’re more from a background of graphic design, industrial design, architecture, urbanism, much more than the traditional muralism. We’re more into the shapes, and form.”

The result is not so much a private initiative but rather a collaboration between artist and community. The two artists have been living in the area for six months, getting to know the locals and immersing themselves with as much as possible in the area itself. “This is an area that doesn’t have strong representation, but it has a strong community.” In this way, the project becomes more personal as it progresses.

Through projects like these, Urhahn hopes to both give back to the community and explore the reasons behind the decline of the urban neighborhoods in the northern American city. “People are always asking, why are businesses leaving, what’s happened to these streets?” he says.  “Maybe projects like these are actually starting to look at the question.”

Philly Painting is loosely expected to finish production around September, 2012. In the fall, Haas and Hahn will begin an additional artistic project in Center City.

You can contact Magali Roman at maga.roman@temple.edu.

Campus Newswire: Top 5

Photo © Cabrini College

 

Here are this week’s top five news bites from our local colleges and universities:

Montco Department of Mental Health Honors Cabrini College for Work with Homeless

The 2012 Recovery and Resiliency award, presented by the Montgomery County Department of Mental Health, has been awarded to Cabrini College’s Wolfington Center. The Wolfington Center provides Cabrini students with opportunities for service and outreach, and received the award for its partnership with Norristown’s Coordinated Homeless Outreach Center.

Webster’s Mobile Device Development

Millersville University students looking to spend the summer designing the next Angry Birds or Temple Run instead of just playing them are in luck. Dr. Roger Webster, a computer science professor at the University, has designed 20 Android apps, and will be sharing his secrets in a 4-unit summer course that will walk students through the process of creating the next killer app.

“We did it together!” Husband and wife graduate with each other’s support

Peirce College’s specialization in adult and returning students leads to stories and experiences that simply don’t happen at other schools. The journey that Vector Cole and Ashley Jenkins-Cole took is one such a story. The husband and wife team went back to school together, supported each other through their Peirce careers, and this spring, graduated together, with matching BS’s in Business Administration.

PhilaU Partnership with Destination Imagination Inspires Kids to Create

Philadelphia University recently hosted the Destination Imagination Global Finals, where qualifying elementary and middle school students from across the globe worked together to solve out interdisciplinary puzzles and problems. The University was also recently selected as one of only six destinations for the NASA uplink that will be happening on June 26, where students will get a chance to live-chat with astronauts at the International Space Station.

Choose Your Own Adventure: Rutgers-Camden Research Center Powers Website for Customized Tours of Philadelphia

If you’ve ever wanted to get a look at Philadelphia that didn’t come from some stuffy tour book or in the company of hundreds of fanny-pack sporting tourists, Rutgers-Camden has just the vacation-planning tool for you. The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia contains all the information you need to get excited about Philadelphia-area landmarks and historical sites, and know how best to go about seeing them.

 

You can contact Wesley Brown at wbrown3@villanova.edu.

Top 5 Upcoming Philly Events

Photo © Kelsey Jones for Campus Philly

Here are this week’s top five Campus Philly picks for events going on in Philly this week. For more events, visit the Campus Philly Events Calendar.

 Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Fashion

Price: FREE When? June 25, 8:00pm Where? Rittenhouse Square Park

Can you imagine a life where we all have to wear the same outfit? (Think District 13 in the Hunger Games). Well, because we’re not all subjected to wear gray suits, 90degreez in collaboration with Welcome America will host a fashion show that will remind us why we love fashion so much. Life, Liberty & The Pursuit of Fashion will highlight fashion from past time periods to the future; a combination of history, art and fashion that will display a creative montage of lively entertainment.

Philly @ The Movies: “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”

Price: FREE! When? June 26, 9:00pm-11:00pm Where? Piazza at Schmidts

If  Bueller took the day off, then you can take the night off. Come with your friends and enjoy a night of one of our favorite movies from the 80’s. We think that the best way to convince you to go would be to quote Bueller himself: “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

City Hall Presents: Kate Watson-Wallace and Ballet X

Price: FREE When? June 27, 5:30pm- 6:30pm Where? City Hall Courtyard

City Hall will host another spectacular show in its courtyard. This week, Ballet X and Kate Watson-Wallace will break all dance expectations and bring a show that is bound to be both sophisticated and daring.

Night Market Philadelphia: Washington Avenue

Price: FREE When? June 28, 6:00pm-10:00pm Where? 9th and Washington Ave

Do you love food? How about a half a mile of food vendors of great eats under $5? Well your gastronomical dreams finally came true. Come to Philly’s Night Market and celebrate all the city’s ethnic restaurants and gourmet food trucks. With more than 40 vendors, there is a place for everyone to eat.  

Umphrey’s McGee and G.Love at Electric Factory

Price: $39.90 When? June 29, 8:00pm Where? Electric Factory Outdoor

There is one thing you can expect from an Umphrey’s McGee show– a unique musical experience. The band claims that all of their concerts are different and with G.Love as a guest it can only get better. This is a summer concert you don’t want to miss.

 

You can contact Camille Padilla at camiplati@gmail.com.

Philadelphia Chocolate Tours:
$5 Off Ticket Price

Philadelphia Chocolate Tours

$5 off ticket price with CP Discount Tag

EXPIRES: 7/1/2013

The Philadelphia Chocolate Tour takes guests on guided walking and tasting tours of unique Philadelphia chocolate shops and cafes. Learn about the history and health benefits of chocolate, and the history of the city of Philadelphia and its neighborhoods, while savoring America’s favorite flavor.

Meet at Reading Terminal Market, at 12th Street and Filbert, outside under the Reading Terminal sign.

www.philadelphiachocolatetours.com

Images © Philadelphiachocolatetours.com

Painted Bride: 25% Off

Painted Bride

25% Off with CP Discount Tag

EXPIRES: 6/30/2013

For 40 years the Painted Bride Art Center has remained an artist-centered space committed to the artistic process, the artist’s role in the Philadelphia community and diversity.

230 Vine St

Philadelphia, PA 19106

www.paintedbride.org

Images © Paintedbrideartcenter.org

 

Franklin Institute:
$2 Off Admissions

Franklin Institute

 $2 off admissions w/ student id and CP discount tag

EXPIRES: 6/1/2013

In the spirit of inquiry and discovery embodied by Benjamin Franklin, the mission of The Franklin Institute is to inspire a passion for learning about science and technology.

222 N. 20th St

Philadelphia, PA 19103

www2.fi.edu

images © fi.edu