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Fontbanner

This past week I have felt so encouraged by my friends, my boyfriend, and God. I feel so loved every single day. With it being Valentines day this week, so many surprises came my way. For one, my boyfriend surprised me by sending me flowers. It totally made my day, even though I couldn’t be with him on Valentines day. I have felt that lately God has been helping me strengthen my relationship with him because I am sure he knows I have been unsure about my faith. Without these people plus my family I would be lost and I am glad they are all close to me, except my boyfriend since he is in Colorado. This week has just been perfect, I hope more weeks like this come more often. I know God is on my side! I am excited about this weekend because I am volunteering at the Magic House. One of my favorite places in St. Louis. Also I am going to be busy writing for the Fontbanner but I am very excited that I can be a part of a great group of people.

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This week has been an academic marathon for me – I’ve had a test, a quiz, or a monster homework assignment due every day so far, and…(wait for it)…I’ve been so sleepy in the mornings from staying up late studying that I’ve started drinking coffee. (*gasp!*)

I’m seriously considering disowning myself for that, seeing as I hate coffee and usually avoid it at all costs. Sometimes, though, you have to bite the bullet – or, sip the bitter brown stuff, if you will – and just get through it. I’d say the semester’s definitely in full swing!

Since it’s the beginning of the school year, I’ll introduce myself so you new readers have a little background on me. Firstly, I’m a junior this year, double-majoring in Computer Science and Applied Math with a Business concentration. This is my third school year blogging for the FBYou site, and fortunately, my life is exciting enough that even after two school years-worth of blogs, I can still come up with a new topic every week! I’m the co-editor-in-chief (because the job title didn’t already have enough hyphens, we had to throw in “co”) of the Fontbanner, the University newspaper, and I’m also the president of the Commuter Advisory Board. I do some other things around campus, but I’ll conceal my hand about those this round so I’ll have an aura of mystery as I reveal my other hobbies throughout the semester. (Don’t get excited – it’s not like I swallow swords or anything).

Hopefully, you’re having a good start to the school year, too, and I’ll talk to you next week!

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Well.  The Cardinals won the World Series last night.  It’s not like I was jumping up and down when it happened or anything, or that my neighborhood was going crazy with fireworks, people coming outside to yell and cheer, and car alarms going off late into the night.  You know us Saint Louisans…we’re calm, cool, and collected in the face of a Ranger-smashing World Series victory.

With that frivolous talk out of my system, onto the meat of this post:  the Fontbanner.

The Fontbanner is the University newspaper, and it’s run by a combo of students taking the class for credit and student volunteers.  I should rephrase that, actually.  Students who volunteer for the paper are few and far between.  Last year, my friend Carly (of FBYou blogging fame) and I were the only volunteers on the ten-person staff.  This year, after I dropped a class (Intro to Classroom Teaching – it was VERY enlightening, and I’d recommend it for anyone who thinks they want to be a teacher), I picked up Newspaper Workshop in its place as an 8-week class, and I’m officially an enrolled student now.

So far, it’s been a bit of a let-down.  When I was a volunteer, I covered some cool events and wrote some fun articles, like the one I wrote about the “Baby Boom” that occurred on the 3rd floor of the East Building.  Now that I’m actually getting CREDIT for my work, I’ve been covering boring stuff, like Sibs Weekend.  Sure, the weekend looked like a lot of fun IF YOU HAD A SIBLING TO GO WITH, but none of my 3 siblings (not counting my other sibling who goes to Fontbonne) wanted to go!  I had to drag myself up to school on a weekend (gasp!) and report on other people having fun with their siblings.

Oh well.  Such is life.

What I do like about the Fontbanner, and this is what kept me volunteering, is that it helps me improve my writing skills.  It turns out, journalistic writing is really difficult.  It’s not like the kind of writing you use for assignments, and the idea behind a newspaper article is to write as simply and powerfully as possible.  I find this really annoying, because it means you can’t use fancy words and that you have to intentionally dumb down your sentences and descriptions.

I consider working on the Fontbanner a writing work-out, because it makes me focus on control.  It’s easy for me to write complex, flowing sentences that sound nice when read aloud.  To shorten those down and make them easy for readers to absorb is a challenge, but doing so pushes me to creatively find ways to express what I need to get across succinctly.  Sometimes, it’s really frustrating and I want to quit the newspaper altogether.  But seeing the final product when it’s published on the Fontbanner website never ceases to give me that tingly feeling of pride inside, and that feeling’s worth all the angst that goes into the article.

So, if you’ve never read the Fontbanner, you should check us out here.  I think it’s a nice paper, but then, I’m a less than impartial critic, aren’t I?  What I like about the class is that anyone can sign up for it, and everyone’s articles get published.  Plus, it’s always a fun group of people to work with.  The staff is mostly English majors, so I get made fun of for being the Computer Science geek in the newsroom, but my background gave me an edge when the newspaper went online this past year.  (Muahahaha – revenge of the nerds!)

Anyway, that’s why I like writing for the Fontbanner.

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I went to my first All-Campus Meeting on Monday, before our two-and-a-half snow days. As the name implies, the whole campus community is always invited to these meetings, but I’d never been interested enough to go. I’m writing an article for the Fontbanner, however, that pertains to something one of the speakers was going to be talking about, so I thought I’d check it out.

The auditorium was packed when I tiptoed in at high noon. After I found a seat, I realized that, basically, the only attendees were faculty and staff members! Fortunately, one of my friends from the paper was there, too, so we sat together for moral support.
Once I got past my self-consciouness at being one of the few people in the room under the age of 30, I started to enjoy the meeting. It was really informative about the stuff that’s going on and coming up on campus, and I learned a lot about the way the Fontbonne budget operates and who’s in charge of various departments. I’ve got to say, it was a lot like being in a collegiate version of the teacher’s lounge – all the professors were chit-chatting about how they were hoping for a snow day!

I think students should check out an All-Campus Meeting at least once – it taught me a lot about the University – but here’s a tip:
Take a buddy.

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Conversations with My Community

by Alumni Posts November 1, 2010

One thing I really love about Fontbonne is how easy it is to embed yourself in the community. I’ve been very fortunate in my experiences at this school and have gotten a lot of opportunities that I may not have at a larger school. With all these experiences has come the possibility of making friends […]

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Students writing for Real Life at Fontbonne are paid a small fee for each post by the university.