The Last Blog….

Well, where to start? This has been an amazing experience. I have no idea how I got to this point already. I am not ready for this to be over. It feels like we have only been here for a few days, not a few weeks! I have developed such strong bonds with many people here. I don’t want to forget a single moment of this.

I learned many lessons not only from the HSI experience in general, but this class as well. I learned to find the beauty in everything. I learned that sometimes all it takes is a different angle to make everything become clear. I learned that sometimes everything isn’t like it seems at first. I learned that multimedia plays a large roll in everyday life. I learned a lot about the person I am and how everyone else sees me. I learned that AIDS and HIV are not things I am into (this was my sciences class). I learned that even if you aren’t into something it doesn’t mean you can’t learn from it. I learned to not take time for granted, because before you know it, it’s the end of the three weeks and you are forced to say goodbye to all the people and places you have became so close to.

My favorite memory from HSI was “sneaking out” with Brooke and Rachel. Now before you start getting ideas, this was okay-ed by the PC’s, so probably doesn’t really qualify as sneaking out, but those words made it sound like even more fun than it really was. It was the strawberry moon and there were supposed to be a bunch of shooting stars. The night was clear. Everyone is supposed to be in their room by 10:30, but we NEEDED to see the sky. We took a blanket and a few apples and found a spot in Frat Mall. We laid there talking about who we were and who we wanted to be. That is the moment that I will never forget, for that is the moment that I found friends that connected with me and understood me and didn’t care if I was crazy.

I am a different person from this experience. I am more outgoing and I speak up when I have ideas. I have learned to voice my opinions and not care to show my crazy side. I see now that people will accept me as me and I don’t have to pretend to be anyone except myself. I know that sounds cheesy, but it is really true. Sure I am excited to go home, but at the same time the last thing I want to do is leave these people.
I am ready for college now because of this experience. I am ready to show the world who I am and what I am capable of. If I could change anything about my part of HSI, I would not be as afraid of coming, I would be myself right from the beginning, that is after all what this is all about, finding yourself.

I know when I get home everyone will ask how HSI was, what I learned, who I met, what I did… all of the normal after three weeks questions. There are honestly no answers for those questions. What I have learned and felt are things that no words can describe. I guess I will just stick to it was amazing and I will never forget any of it.
For all of you reading this next year, and the year after that, and the year after that, and so on, it is your first day of class probably. No matter who you are, what you like, or what you want to do with your life, never quit smiling. This is an experience that I promise you is great. Sure, there might be mountains in your journey, but I promise you, the view from the top is worth it. Never quit climbing and striving. Use every moment to become the best you can be. Be yourself, because that is truly the best version of you. Don’t be afraid to go out and become someone new.

Here are a few more pictures of all of HSI.
Caution: There are a lot 🙂
HSI //

A Few Last Pictures

It is quite depressing here today. It is our last day of class. We have the brunch tomorrow and then it is all done. As a final photo taking we had a HSI Photo Scavenger Hunt. Below are the pictures for the scavenger hunt!

Someone from HSI that makes me smile.
Brooke- She has became almost a sister to me.

Something from HSI or the UW Campus that makes me annoyed.
The Key for the Door- EVERY SINGLE TIME!!!!

Someone from HSI that makes me thankful and appreciative
Orientation Groups- They show me that I should be thankful I am getting to experience the campus life before actually coming here.

Something from the UW campus that makes me sad to leave.
Our Class- They always make me laugh and I love the smiles they bring to my face.

Something from the UW campus that inspires or educates me.
UW Flag- It inspires me to stand firm, even as the wind whips me around.

Something from HSI that frightens me.
Talking Stop Light- It is not natural…

Something from the UW campus that makes me love summer time.
Flowers- They bring beauty.

Something from the UW campus that makes me wish it were winter time.
Mosquitoes and Sunburns- I think this is self explanatory.

Some people that I wish I could spend more time with.
Jill and Abi- They bright up every day with their smiles.

Something from HSI that I am eager to forget.
Prize Gnome- We didn’t win…

Media’s Impact of Life

There are many ways that media can impact a life. We learned today that there are four dimensions in media that affect how we view it. There is timing, so how long it takes to affect an individual. The second is the different types of effects, for example emotional, physiological, cognitive, and more. The third element is valence, so if it has a negative or positive affect. The last is the intentionality, so if we meant to expose ourselves to this or not.

Personally, there have been many times that these kinds of media devices have been used on me. For one, I listen to a lot of music depending on my mood. This is a form of behavioral or emotional- type effects. Positive valence effects have also played a part in my life. I often watch videos on Youtube that form better thoughts in my head. Movies also have an affect on me with the physiological-type effect. They can get my heart racing and blood pressure go up, all without my control.

There are many ways media can affect people, and I learned today that is because of the different effects they use.

Does it Really Matter?

We looked into ideal body images according to the media. Today the average female is 5’4 and 165 lbs, but the models are 5’10 and 120 lbs. Males are usually 5’9 and 195 lbs, but those models are 6’0 and 175 lbs.  It is sad to think that this is the way to sell products now. Lies shouldn’t be produced at truth. I’m sure it is possible for individuals to get the same looks as these models, however it is not healthy. If everyone looked like the “ideal” person, then our expectations would change. We want what we cannot have, that is the way of society today. We would then want to look different than what is considered “ideal.” Then once everyone looked like that, we would have to change our desires again, thus landing us in the middle of a downward spiral of misleading images. These kind of media images are destroying children, teens, women, and men. I believe everyone should accept who they are. They should change because that is what they want, not because that is what the world wants. If they want to change themselves, let them. I think that media should start showing models of average size and not pressuring individuals to want to be different. Everyone needs to just be accepting of everyone else. The world would be a much happier, peaceful place if everyone wasn’t worried about  how tall they are, the shape of their head, or how much they weigh!

First Day of Summer, Snow!

Yesterday (the first day of summer) we got to go visit the snowy range. It was so beautiful! My favorite part was stopping in Centennial on the way there as well as the way back. On the way there we stopped at the Friendly Store. They defiantly lived up to their name.  On the way back we stopped and go t ice cream in this wonderful little town. Sadly, I did not get any pictures of Centennial. I did however get many good photos while at the Snowy Range. We were challenged to try to take pictures of other people instead of just the landscape. I found this to be a little difficult, however I believe that I got a few good ones.
Snowy Range//

To Ban, or Not to Ban

Today we had a very large discussion on if books should be able to be banned or not. Sure there are reasons that books should not be banned, one of the main points being that if an individual wants to read that book just let them. In my eyes however, there are more reasons that books should be able to be banned. We listened to a book that was in a children’s section of a library. It was called “And Tango makes Three,” and talked about how there was a pair of penguins, both male, that were a couple in a zoo. They end up raising a family. Take this book for example, this is a children’s book! I grew up learning that love is between a man and a woman. I would not want my child, who is still young enough to not really know what they are reading to pick up this book and read it. It is immoral and I simply don’t see why it would be considered a children’s book. My school occasionally bans books, and these are always books that I can definitely see why. I feel as though if a person wants to read a book, they will find a way, even if it isn’t in the school library. It just helps keep the child on a strong foundation the longer you can keep them away from these types of books. Personally, the only top 10 Commonly Challenged books I have read is “To Kill a Mockingbird.” This was an assigned book for my English class. I like the idea of banning books, however I realize that some individuals don’t agree with me. To me this should not be as controversial as it is. It is honestly simple. If you ban a book from a school library, the child may find other ways to read it, but those ways the parents can see what they are reading instead of them just reading a book at school that goes against what the family believes. I realize that some individuals may argue that banning books is against the first amendment, however I would like them to realize that banning a book doesn’t mean it no longer exists at all, it is just harder for an individual to get their hands on.

Part of a Generation of Likes

Today we watched a video for the media literacy portion of this class. It was a very interesting video that really made me think. It showed how much life has changed and is currently changing as far as advertising on multimedia. I am not so sure that this video was completely accurate for today’s generation, for I believe that not all of our generation is completely centered around “likes” as they were stating. There is a part of this generation that is more media literate than this video was saying. Don’t get me wrong, there is a very large number of individuals that do have this problem, however this video made it seem as though they believed everyone in the world is this way. Sure, this video had some very true points that made me really worry about what this generation could become. One of the main things this video showed was integrating advertising and marketing in to social media, which I believe is fine to an extent. If the individual really likes that product, by all means let them show it. If they are just showing the product so that they get money and more objects from the sponsors, that is when it becomes a problem in my mind. I believe that “selling-out” could become a problem. This was all very interesting for me to think about, and certainly not something that I will easily forget.

Vedauwoo Trip

Yesterday we had the privilege of taking a trip to the beautiful area known as Vedauwoo.  We were challenged to not only have fun climbing the rocks but to also take beautiful photos of the area around. It was a very enjoyable trip that I will not easily forget. From seeing how high I could get on the rocks, to belly crawling through a cave, no part of this trip was dull. I am happy to say I took over 100 pictures, however we were asked to put our best ten on our new flickr accounts. Feel free to go take a look at just a small part of our amazing trip!