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Andrés Bello

En la clase el semana pasada, nosotros aprendemos sobre Andrés Bello. Bello era una poeta, y una diplomática de Chile. La profesora quien lo presenta dijo que Bello era amigos con Humboldt, un estudiante quien vivo en España y viajo de este lugar para estudiar el ambiente. En 1810, los revoluciones comenzaron entre Francia y España porque los país coloniales no quieren la influencia fuera de el gobierno. A causa de esos deseos, un grupo fue creado y con esto, una conspiración. Los expertos piensan que Bello fue el maestro de este grupo. Lamentablemente, Bello fue desterrado a Inglaterra por su trabaja in la revolución y aquí, recontro Rodrigo quien fue el autor de “El cid.” Me gusta Bello por que pienso que tiene mucho influencia en la cultura España. Hay una universidad que se llama en la nombre de Bello, y muchas poemas sobre su vida.

Fresh From the Farm!

The Best Summer Food in Carlisle: Fresh strawberries managed and harvested by my friends and classmates at the Dickinson College (now Certified Organic!) Farm. Today I picked up my first CSA share of vegetables from the farm which included green onions, garlic, sugarsnap peas, strawberries (!), cilantro, chard, salad greens, lettuce, spinach, and more!

Every year from May through June, the Farm offers a program called Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) through which local consumers like me subscribe and receive a weekly supply of fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Buying into a CSA is an investment in the financial stability of local farmers and their farms, by allowing farmers to focus on the quality of their food and not solely on potential profits. CSA encourages sustainable agriculture that is local, organic, and poly-cultured (they grow numerous plants that support each other and the soil). Life cannot get much “greener” than this!

Moin moin!
(That’s “Hello” in Northern Germany.)

As I’m sure you’re aware, Dickinson consistenly receives national recognition for our green efforts on campus and in academic programs. What better way to compliment these efforts than a study abroad opportunity in Germany! Seriously, check it out – Germany is a world leader in renewable energy technology and is currently experiencing unprecedented support for Green politics.

I have a new feature on my personal Dickinson blog that tracks my sustainable experiences while on the Dickinson in Bremen program. As a Dickinson student in Bremen, I’ve visited the Federal Ministry for the Environment in Berlin, completed an internship for the Fairtrade and sustainably-oriented Bremen Information Center for Human Rights and Development, and lived by the everyday waste-reducing/recycling standards of the typical German citizen. These experiences have allowed to reflect on my lifestyle back in the U.S. and gain a better understanding not simply of alternative lifestyles, but how we relate to eachother in a complex global society – and that’s what studying abroad is all about!

Read about my observations on the growing political movement against nuclear energy, bike transportation in Bremen, and more: http://blogs.dickinson.edu/nicoleinbremen/2011/05/09/germans-love-the-umwelt-exhibit-8/

Liebe Grüße aus Hansestadt Bremen,
Nicole

Hi Everyone!

So I was watching the Colbert Report last night and who comes on but a professor that I took a Mass Media course with, Professor Farrell. She was one of my favorite professors and I really enjoyed taking her class. Here she talks about her new book “Fat Shame.”

Check it OUT!

Professor Amy Farrell on the Colbert Report

Lunch Poems in the Caf

Last Monday, Professor Bowen took our Transatlantic Literary Culture class into the cafeteria at noon to have a group reading of Frank O’Hara’s collection Lunch Poems.

It’s a fun collection of poetry already, and the frenetic energy of the caf was the perfect way to read it for the first time. We went around the table, each student taking a page, and even though we had to shout it out so that the people at the other end of the table could hear us, not to mention negotiating our classmates coming and going for classes and refills and seconds, I’ve never had so much fun at a poetry reading. Having fries and Coke with my poetry probably didn’t hurt, either…

Silly Things

If you can’t read this it says “It’s the simple things in life that turn peasents into leaders. And we know the differnence between the WALKERS and the SLEEPERS”

This white board in TOME, dickinson’s science building is always filled with funny things. It changes all of the time and I just love to see what funny things people put on it.

Pretty Lights Concert

This last Friday we had a concert by Pretty Lights which is the electronic/dubstep group. The light show for this performance was incredible! I didn’t even know where to begin when I walked into that room! ATS, our auditorium was packed with people decked out in neon or other crazy outfits. I think everyone just had a great time!

biz Internship

Greetings from Bremen! – more specifically, from my desk at the Bremer Informationszentrum für Menschenrechte und Entwicklung (Bremen Information Center for Human Rights and Development, or simply “biz”).

I’m into the homestretch of my last week of a 6 week internship at biz. Technically it’s Semesterferien (“semester break”) for the German university system, but this month and a half has been anything but a vacation for me. From 10am-6pm Monday through Friday I work to further education in sustainable development (meaning the bettering of both human lives and the environment through the institution of respectful, healthy, and justly-profitable social and business practices). biz is an NGO that supports local interest groups, holds seminars and letures, designs and distributes museum exhibitions, organizes interactive speakers to give presentations in local schools, and maintains a library specific to research and pedagogic work in human rights and development issues – with a focus on Fairtrade, Clean Clothes Campaign, sustainable tourism, and water.

Interning in a foriegn country comes with a unique set of challenges. My responsiblities range from those involving complex skills, like helping teachers and students find research materials in our library, translating the biz website from German into English, and sitting in on planning committee meetings for upcoming sustainable development events in Bremen to more traditional “intern”-labeled assignments like making photo copies, answering the telephone, and mailing programs and flyers to the community. Acting as a librarian for, say, university faculty researching blue jean manufacturing processes and implications in China is tough, but, as I’ve learned, even a mundane task like data entry carries new weight and offers unexpected learning opportunities in a second language. In both situations, I was held accountable for accurate comprehension and articulation. And in both I was pulled outside of my comfort zone, but eventually met with success – rewarded with new vocabulary words and a sense of confidence.

Working with German colleagues has also been incredibly valuable. From the start I was much more hesitant to interact with these new acquaintances then my vocal, outgoing self has ever been. My coworkers, however, were understanding and very welcoming, so eventually I figured out biz’s office norms – the tone used between colleagues, team meetings, packing organic lunches, standard dress (this level of casual actually took me some time to get in synch with), ect – and adjusted to my environment. It does help that everyone in the office is sensitive to cultural differences, as they work for a human rights organization, after all! Though they are interested in hearing my american interpretations of things, their support of my German is also hugely appreciated. In addition to an increase in my vocabulary, I have noticed my sentences flowing more smoothly and incorporating more creative structures and idioms. Even my thoughts are thought more frequently in German.

The biggest impact of my coworkers on me is their enthusiasm in explaining their individual projects to me and encouraging me to investigate these topics with further research in our library. In this way I have learned so much about human rights and environmental issues – issues that transcend cultures – and how educational organizations like biz can effect changes in attitudes that in turn lead to definte changes in government and business policies. So, all in all, it looks like I had a pretty worthwhile Semesterferien.

Hi guys,

I want to tell you about Colson Whitehead’s visit, but that will have to wait until the next post. I wanted to share a news item with you that’s more personal, and a lot more serious. Cam Kerr ’09, an alum of Dickinson and our ROTC program, was recently wounded on a tour of duty in Afghanistan, while protecting another soldier. He was awarded the Purple Heart medal for his service. You can read the story here.

I met and got to know Cam on a service trip to New Orleans on Spring Break ’09. I’m so proud to know him, and I hope you’ll read the article to learn more about him.

So everyone in the English department is really excited about tomorrow’s visit from award winning writer Colson Whitehead – his New York Times op-eds are all over all of our Facebook walls (I love it when one of my professors likes one of my links).

A few of our classes have read and discussed Whitehead’s most recent novel Sag Harbor (published in 2009 – I read it over spring break and loved it), but for those of you unfamiliar with his work (other novels include The Intuitionist and John Henry Days), he’s written some great articles for the NYT that we’ve all been talking about. My favorite – and the one that got the Facebook seal of approval from Professor Ball – is a really funny essay about literary genre called “What to Write Next.” He’s also written more political pieces about race and the idea of “post racial” America. Check it out! I’m going to two separate talks with him tomorrow, one specifically for a class I’m taking and one for the public, as well as a special dinner. I’ll let you know how it goes!

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