Friday, April 8, 2016

The Midterms from Hell

Hello wonderful people!

As you may have noticed, the blog template has changed! Yes, I've finally been able to setting on something I was at least moderately happy with. I'm still a bit iffy on color choices, and keep going back and forth on some aesthetic choices, but for now we're going with this. I've unfortunately never really coded or anything before, so it's a bit beyond my ability to make some of the really nice changes I want. Once midterms are over, I definitely intend on reading up on it. 

It's been a rough two weeks since the last time I've been here. From studying for midterms (which are quickly creeping closer) to MCAT prep to scrambling to get a summer plan on lockdown, I haven't had much time to do anything fun. If there's one thing college has taught me, it's how to effectively manage my time. Granted, it hasn't worked very well (curse the tempting pull of all five seasons of Scandal), but I'm sure I'll get the system down pat by the end of senior year. 

One of the more interesting things that happened today was when I was waiting for the 7 train this morning. Today being the Mets home opener game, the Nostalgia train ran past my station on its way to Queens. The nostalgia train, or "The Train of Many Colors", is made up of vintage subway cars painted different colors to represent different eras in subway history. It's not brought out too often by the MTA, so it was a real treat to catch a glimpse of it. Thinking about out subway always leads my thought back to Tokyo. I was lucky enough to use a portion of my Opportunities fund to take a short winter class in Tokyo (Film and Culture if anyone's interested!). Essentially, Tokyo's subways system is what we all wish NYCs would be like. The contrast in aesthetic, cleanliness, efficiency is almost laughable. 

This might be the limit to my ramblings for today. I will be posting updates, as well as continually editing the site for a more pleasing experience for everyone. 

Until next time !

Friday, March 25, 2016

An Introduction

Hi everyone!

My name is Malavika, and I will be the new coordinator for the MacBlog! I apologize for the lack of activity up till now – I’ve slowly been thinking of new ideas to implement so that this blog becomes an even better resource than it was in it’s heyday for potential and incoming students.

As always, I’ll start with an introduction. I’m currently a junior at Hunter College, with a major in Biology and a minor in Environmental Science and Religious Studies while on the pre-medical track. I’m currently taking Japanese, and hope to one day become fluent enough to pass the proficiency exam. I love listening to music (I’ve recently been hooked to Bach’s concertos), and trying new foods!

I hope to start getting more writers and make changes to the site in the coming days, so please look forward to them!

Saturday, June 6, 2015

I Met Mindy Kaling, I Graduated from College Three Times, and I Changed, A Bit

Before I dive into ~deep, reflective mode~ in my last post here (omg. actual sob. I am very sad about this) here are some random updates I feel compelled to say here:
In my old posts, I talked about my love for Mindy Kaling a bunch of times. In true full circle, I MET HER AT BOOK CON LAST WEEK!!
Let me rephrase: I pushed myself to the front of the line, begged her to shake my hand while people swarmed her, and shouted "I'VE HAD NIGHTMARES ABOUT MEETING YOU!" at which she looked at me and said, "Nightmares?!" (The nightmare was that you didn't like me, Mindy Kaling!) But hello, I got her attention!!!!! So much success. Also, one of my favorite books, Attachments, is about this guy falling in love with his coworker from reading her emails (his job is to monitor emails). I told the author how much this resonated with me and how much I loved emails and she and I shared a moment of mutual appreciation and she thanked me for loving it so much!!! Ugh I love authors!!! Also, last thing, my english multicultural lit professor told me at the end of my presentation, "Very engaging. I didn't know you were that funny." THIS COMING FROM THE MOST ENGAGING, FUNNIEST PROFESSOR I'VE HAD. I died.

I think I have to discuss my post-grad plans here, bcuz it's probably relevant (or is it? Isn't Mindy Kaling much more relevant?)

I graduated with a Nursing major and English minor. I'm going to start prepping for my NCLEX exam to become an RN soon. I take the exam sometime in July. If I pass, I want to travel in August. Starting tomorrow, I have to apply to jobs, hopefully get one with a nurse residency program, and then IDEALLY work as an RN in September and hone my skills as a new nurse. Once I work for about a year or at least half a year I want to decide for sure what I want to specialize in (geriatrics, I'm thinking) and figure out a grad program. Hopefully the hospital I'm working for will pay for it if I'm working there. Then like, I will attempt to understand what a 401K is and get an apartment with my brother somewhere? I will attempt to cook and do adult-ish things like pay for ...light bills or something. And like, work. Maybe I will buy wallpaper, because that strikes me as ~independent!~ and ~adult!~ although mostly I just want to buy flowery wallpaper! Additionally, I have grand plans to learn ASL, Arabic & or Hindi, go back to the trumpet & piano and learn new skills. Also I plan to buy lots of YA books with any money I make. And movies. Basically things for sustenance. Right now, I am nervous to become a nurse, but also determined!

Ok, now for my thoughts on ending college (whoa, hope this post doesn't read like I take myself too seriously, hope it reads like I am trying for some semblance of organization):

In yearbooks, and the nursing yearbook, people usually write "Never change!!" I used to think it was sweet, but after nursing school, I is about change and adapting to it. I would even go so far to say that, arguably, the point of life is change. "Love change or die!"

In college, I don't know how much I changed. I guess I would say that I finally bloomed a bit. Oh god, that sounds SO. VERY. CHEESY TO SAY. But, it's true. I realized the value of combing one's hair and putting effort into one's appearance. I became a less awkward dancer, I dressed better, I went more places and didn't shrivel into awkwardness when talking to boys. I think I continued to talk very loudly wherever I went, though. I don't really have much poise or a sense of propriety, but I have a bit more than I started with. I gained more confidence, I acknowledged compliments rather than refusing to take them and I think I became a bit more emotionally mature. Or not, because a YA novel can reduce me to tears in minutes, but let's go with that for now.
While I'm glad about these changes and definitely a purporter of change, I don't mean to suggest that inherent personality traits should change. For example, Colin Firth & SRK would be devastated if I lost the romantic part of me that passionately loves them from afar. And lots of neighbors would be very sad if the decibel of my voice was to be lowered! And who would librarians have to fine, if not for my late returning-ways?

Last year, I attended the Hunter Bellevue Nursing graduation and wished desperately that I would win an award upon graduating and be in the program, and I wished that I would get to speak at graduation. How lucky when the things you dream for come true! I graduated with honors, a nursing award in school leadership, and got to speak at graduation! I think I'm most proud that I went after the things I wanted, unwaveringly, even if it scared me (to go to India alone after a breakup), even if no one valued it (an English minor is less useful than a Spanish one), even if no one knew what it was (Book Con is amazing and I need everyone to realize that), even if no one read it (the HBSON newsletter, possibly this blog, but JK, people actually read this, yay!), even if it broke my own heart (breaking up), even if I had to swallow my pride (fixing friendships) and even if it was hard (doing an externship. Becoming a nurse). You can't always do what you want, because it's selfish and can hurt others. But I think college is the time allotted to do exactly that, and I feel happy that I did. I hate having regrets, as does the average person, and whenever I made a decision I wondered if I would regret not doing it later. For example, defying my professor's recommendation NOT to selfie on stage at graduation - would I regret not doing it later? Yes. Did I regret that it was embarrassing? Yes, but I'm more glad that I had the guts to do it. And make 500 people stand up for it. Oh, god.

On graduations: the real stress was finding 3 dresses for 3 days of graduation!! (Secret: I wore one dress twice. I know, fashion police, I know!! But no one saw it under the gown.) 
I won't lie. I am TOTALLY really proud that I'm still 20 years old (right, with my maturity level it's really undetectable I know) and graduated from three programs (technically, ok, lol) this year. I loved being a part of three awesome schools - CUNY Hunter, Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, and Macaulay Honors College! My first grade teacher had me skip a grade and I graduated a bit younger and sometimes I was pretty immature and I still don't have an ID and I finished college and sometimes my classmates treated me like a little kid but, but, it feels nice to have finished before 21.
Here is a poem I wrote about graduation:
all around
oh, how they abound
and flow without sound
they also make us look round

Graduating was great. I pretended everyone was my fan and I waved princess-style to them. I hollered to my friends. My hair was consistently fabulous. I wore heels. Selfies were warranted, practically required! It was nice! The Hunter graduation was so emotional and inspiring, the Nursing one was sort of the best day of my life, and the MHC one was a sweet ending.

Today I posted an fb album with photos of friends from graduation and the photos sucked me down memory lane. I've been making it a point to tell all the former & current friends I met in college what they meant to me over the years. As in writing them a yearbook entry via note under their door, verbally saying it to their face, or posting a fb picture and saying what I loved about them. What's the point of having feelings or appreciating people if they don't know it?

This post should have direction, but like every post I've posted on here, it is severely lacking in this. I'll attempt some, though, through a list:

Things I Learned in College:
1. How to appreciate fruits
2. How to have one-person dance parties
3. How to have 8-person dance parties
4. How to not really attend any other kind of parties
5. How to have a boyfriend
6. How to not have a boyfriend
6. How to grow to appreciate weekends at home
7. How to cook bland and American meals
8. How to run 2 miles without stopping
9. How to swiftly navigate a run to Hunter College
10. How to be a nurse
11. How to cite APA
12. How the body works
13. How important sleep is
14. How to blow-dry my hair
15. How to have more self-confidence
16. How to keep friends
17. How to lose friends
18. How to flirt with waiters
19. How to spend a lot of time on facebook
20. How to be a better person
21. How to LOVE TV SHOWS
22. How to fall in love with professors
23. How to maintain no drinking
24. How to travel alone
25. How to document my life, way too much
26. How to be alone
27. How to be at home the city
28. How to love myself more.
29. How to appreciate my parents and my grandparents more.
30. How to value high emotional IQs
31. How to do scary paperwork and pay for things and be tax exempt
32. How to be a better leader!!

I am sad that the "best years of my life" are over, but I know that I tried to enjoy and appreciate them while I had them. I also think and hope that more beautiful times are to come (iA). This last week was an emotional week. I moved out of Brookdale forever, I graduated from Macaulay, I read my best friend's yearbook entry to me, and I saw my nursing class as a group for the last time & signed yearbooks with them. I feel sad, but not just because our time living together and being this group together has ended, but because I feel drowned in nostalgia and memories. But, such is life. I will keep them with me.

My friends mattered so much to me over these four years, and I lost some, kept some, and in the end, I look back at it so fondly. My MHC friends were so similar to me - values, goals, interests, and I loved meeting people who were like me. My nursing friends gave me a different kind of friendship, which was just plain love for people who are there during the hardest, toughest parts of school. That bond is too real.  I don't know how many friends I'll stay in touch with and how close we'll be, but I loved the four years we had together.

Mostly, I feel lucky to have had my family. I would be nowhere without them.
To incoming freshmen - cherish your time as much as you can! Appreciate what you have! Use your opportunities fund. GO AFTER WHAT YOU WANT.  Why not? What is holding you back? If you don't get it, you don't get it. But you tried!

Finally, thank you to Macaulay. I don't know what else to really say except that I was so blessed to be a part of MHC. From the first day I heard about it, it was my dream to be accepted. To be in the city, live for free, attend school for free, study abroad for free, and study for four years in a diverse school for smart, hardworking kids. I am sitting here and shaking my head at how fortunate I am. Thank you, Macaulay. For the laptops. For the advisors. For the opportunities. For the support. For this part of my life. I hope and plan to give back and the alumni network seems popular so though I won't be filling this blog with my ramblings, I will stay a part of this amazing AMAZING AMAZING BEAUTIFUL BLESSED SCHOOL!!! We are so lucky.

It's been a real pleasure writing for this blog, even if my posts were ridiculous and irrelevant and mainly about TV show recommendations. Thanks for reading, and good luck.

Amirah Yasin

P.S. If you have no ideas how to decorate your hat (as I did) simply photoshop your face & your favorite actor's face together and you will be a hit!!!
Ah. If Shahrukh only knew.

P.P.S Book recommendations:
-An Ember in the Ashes by Saba Taahir, think Hunger Games + Divergent + Finnikin of the Rock but still original and very good!!! It's been out for a month and already picked up to be a movie...GO YA BOOKS
- All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven. Mental health, teens, much feels, much cry, very well written
-A Court of Thorns & Roses by Sarah J. Maas (who I met at Book Con GAH). Retelling of Beauty & the Beast with hot faeries (ew, did I just say that? They are in the book though), a much more kickass and grumpy Belle, and good romance!
- P.S I Still Love You this title just seems like something I'd love. It totally is, even as I tried to mock this book series by Jenny Han. It's adorable, ok, and good if you want to read some cutesy good HS comfort books.
- Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta. My favorite fantasy book series in the world.
Also please everyone, watch Outlander and The 100. Only watch The 100 if you read Sarah Rees Brennan's parody first, below: 
And also if you love Bob Morley's face. He is Australian.  His name in the show is Bellamy. He likes to be tough and kill people but have a moral compass!! He is everything. I need to go to Australia.