Safe Sex Olympics

First, she covered the Laundry Olympics. Now Alicia Hooks, our awesome intern, is writing about our campus’ Safe Sex Olympics, which are held each year to help keep our students safe.

Last week, the Office of Residential Life, along with the Resident Advisors, hosted the Safe Sex Olympics, a yearly campus event. The games were all about practicing safe-sex habits. Representatives from the Adagio Health Clinic, located in Bradford, were also there with facts and to provide testing.  

More than 225 students showed up to participate in the games. This year was also the first time the university offered STD/STI testing through this event, and more than 40 students were tested for gonorrhea and Chlamydia.

As you entered, a sign was posted that said “Welcome to the Condom Factory,” and then the games followed. There were many events:

  • Condom taste test
  • Air-burst test (How much air can you blow into a condom without breaking it?)
  • Tensile test (How many marbles can a condom hold?)
  • How far can you stretch a condom?
  • Leakage test (testing their leaking ability)
  • Pregnant belly race
  • “Smoosh Room” (STD identification)
  • Trivia
  • Lube thumb wrestling (How oily is the lube?)
  • Abstinence table
  • Condom race (How fast can you put on a condom?)

Sound interesting? See for yourself:


Tips to improve your writing

On Monday, we addressed the importance of writing well and offered a few resources to help you improve your writing skills. Today, we have some additional resources to share.

  • Five glaring grammatical errors.  The CollegeBoard has a list of five glaring grammatical errors – such as its vs. it’s — and how to  fix them.
  • Tackling your school papers. The CollegeBoard also offers some tips on how to tackle your school papers, including how to get started, get organized and create a draft.
  • Grammar Girl tips.  Mignon Fogarty, also known as the Grammar Girl, offers tips on all things writing, including compound nouns and subjects, affect vs. effect, and when to use who and whom. She also offers the top 10 grammar myths like ending a sentence with a preposition (it’s OK in some cases).
  • Tips for writing a term paper.  CollegeOnline offers 57 tips for writing a term paper that starts with getting to know your  professors.
  • Punctuation and other tips. There are also many handy resources at your fingertips at the National Punctuation Day website. While we missed National Punctuation Day, which was last Saturday, Sept. 24, you may want to put it on your calendar for          next year so you can celebrate appropriately. We baked these cupcakes one year to celebrate.

Here’s a little tribute we found to pay tribute to both National Punctuation Day and the Old Spice guy that might give you a chuckle:

Have you found any helpful resources? If so, please share them with us.

Good writing matters in college and beyond

If you send 1,000 texts or emails per day, is that writing? And, is all of that texting and emailing affecting your ability to write well?

The answers are no and yes, according to a study by the Pew Research Center, which studies all kinds of neat things, Most teens do not think that texting and emailing are writing.  And, all of that texting and emailing is having a negative effect on their ability to write well. Nearly two-thirds of young people say they’ve used the informal style of texting and emailing in their writings for school.

Of course, this is a problem because your professors are going to have certain writing standards that do not include LOL or LMAO. (In fact, we can guarantee that they won’t be LMAO if you use that text talk.) Not only are good writing skills important in college; they’re also essential when you enter the working world.

At our university, we understand the importance of being able to write well and, as a result, have created a new Writing Center  to help students of all writing levels and abilities.

Our advising center also offers a three-part tutorial on how to write a college essay:

Do you have any suggestions on how to make writing better? If so, just let us know.

On Wednesday we’ll provide some additional resources to help you become a better writer.

Your parents are visiting campus — How to prepare

You’ve just found out your parents will be visiting you on campus. What do you do now? Well, as much as you might not like the idea, there are things you will need to do to prepare. You will need to:

  • Clean your room. 
  • Remove any posters or objects that might offend your parents.
  • Plan what you want to do with them when they get to campus.
  • Show them around campus.
  • Make them feel at home. 

 If you just can’t figure out what to do with your parents while they’re here, this list of events from Pitt-Bradford’s upcoming Alumni and Family Weekend might be able to help you.

The schedule includes fireworks, a piano concert, an organ recital, a dessert reception and a block party.

If anyone has any suggestions to share please let us know.

Alumni and Family Weekend — Why you should go

Many colleges and universities plan special weekends for families and alumni, giving students, their parents, and graduates the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities.  Should you go?

Educator Beth Fredericks says visiting campus will help you stay connected to your son or daughter. “You will earn brownie points for showing up,” she says.

The College Parents of America also say yes. Attending the event will enable you to:

  • see if your child is adjusting to school
  • meet his/her friends
  • experience the school through his/her eyes
  • become more familiar with the school.

Our university’s Alumni and Family Weekend will give parents and students the same opportunities while offering a wide range of events.

Lindsay Retchless, our alumni relations director, offers additional reasons why it’s important to attend:

  • Simply put, its tradition.  This weekend of camaraderie, spirit and Pitt pride is part of what defines our campus and is one of my fondest memories as a student.
  • The weekend gives students and families the opportunity to network with our alumni at the Career Networking Luncheon, which is a highlight. The event connects alumni with students and their parents who can offer professional and career advice.

Do you have any thoughts? Please share them with us.

Laundry Olympics

We have a treat for you today. Guest blogger Alicia Hooks of Washington, D.C., a business management major at Pitt-Bradford, is writing about the Laundry Olympics held last week on campus.

There are many students who come to college campuses all over the world who have never done their own laundry. One way our campus has made the effort to help these students out is through the “Laundry Olympics” hosted by various resident advisors. On Thursday, Sept. 8, RAs from around campus gathered students from all sections to come to the laundry room for the events (with one free load as an incentive for the freshmen). The games included three challenges:

  1. Sock toss. Students first had to sort the socks according to the color tag on top, then toss the newly folded socks into a barrel to score points. First person with three sock bunches in the barrel won.
  2. Towel folding. Up to three students participated at a time. A towel and two washcloths were placed in front of the students, and each one had to neatly fold them. The first one who finished won.
  3. Three-legged race. Using a campus laundry bag,students paired up to race from one end to the other. Fastest team won.

The event also came with a quick “How-to” demonstration involving sorting and loading laundry.

Want to see the Laundry Olympics in action? Here you go:

Making the most of your college visit

So, you’ve scheduled a college visit. Now what? How can you make the most of your visit?

College Parents of America  offers a list of campus visit dos and don’ts, which includes researching the college before you visit, eating in the dining hall to meet and talk with current students, and checking out the surrounding community.

Other sources suggest:

  • Exploring on your own to get the most complete picture of campus
  • Scheduling a meeting with a professor in your major 
  • Reading the bulletin boards to see what’s happening on campus to give you an idea of the activities offered
  • Reading the student newspaper to learn the issues on campus that students care about
  • Staying overnight so you can experience a little of what residence life is like
  • Sitting in on a class to give you a feel for the class size and learning style   
  • Allocating enough time for a visit so you can get a good sense of the campus
  • Talking with a college coach if you’re interested in playing a sport
  • Asking questions such as the percentage of students who live on campus, if courses are taught by professors or teaching assistants, and the teacher-student ratio

And of course, if you have any advice to share please let us know.