List of Catastrophies

So listen to this.  Class has been done for a few weeks now. I was browsing through all my saved notes and papers and such from school and came across what you see a few lines below.  It was from English class.  I was an A student, so when the teacher tells the class to “peer review” each others’ papers, I get worried.  Why would I want a person flunking the class to be reviewing my paper.  As you would expect, I received the class clown for the peer review.  His was sitting on a solid D+ (I know because he told me), and he seemed quite proud of it, which I don’t understand.  He had a lot of feedback for me – grammar (to make it worse), new ideas (to go off topic), and even questions on the words I used (which he had to look up, but the average person would not).

I got my revenge without even trying.  Have a look at this:

  1. The author’s thesis is a one-sentence answer to the essay question.
  2. This thesis is one that a reasonable person might need to be convinced of.
  3. The introduction is worded in an odd way.  It needs to be made clearer.  The biggest issue is the first sentence.  The conclusion doesn’t really have anything to do with summing up the essay and bringing it to a close.  The conclusion needs to sum up the main points of each paragraph and tie everything together.  Lastly, I think the thesis needs to better address the essay question.  Currently, it talks about the aggressive nature of humans and the existence of a society where that is the case.
  4. Each paragraph has a main point, but not all of the paragraphs relate to the thesis.  There doesn’t seem to be much a transition between any of the paragraphs.  The ending idea of one paragraph should tie in to the starting idea of the next paragraph.
  5. The fourth paragraph is the most effective paragraph because it relates to the thesis.
  6. The weakest paragraph is the fifth paragraph because it is does not thoroughly explain the main point.  It needs more description and detail.
  7. The author uses some references, but he needs more of them.  Also, he needs to cite sources in APA format.
  8. The essay does not offer a critical analysis because the essay does not relate well to the thesis.
  9. I liked the forth paragraph because it made sense.
  10. Here are some errors:
  • 1st sentence- change “give” to “gives”
  • Thesis sentence- change “do to” to “due to”
  • The first paragraph’s topic sentence- Split it into 2 sentences after “affected” then say, “For example, according to the Darwinist theory,…”
  • 2nd paragraph (bottom)- change “posses” to “possess”
  • 2nd paragraph (bottom)- add comma after explains in this quote: “After Rousseau explains…”
    • APA format needs to be used in this essay.
    • This paper does not address all of the issues asked for in this essay.  It needs more sources too.


  •       Use more sources and cite them in APA format
  •       Add a cover page to your essay (APA format in Hacker book)
  •       Change the introduction to better answer the essay question.  Then, change the essay to relate to the new thesis.
  •       Cite the lecture as a report from a private organization.
  •       Read through to see if the wording of the sentences makes sense.
  •       Look for grammatical errors with spell-checker.

Has anyone else ever had this happen?  Maybe next time, I’ll request a peer review from the teacher’s pet instead.  My sanity may fair better.


My Last Week at School & Job Applications

Last week, I created a flag football team that I thought would be pretty decent (instead of applying for jobs like I was supposed to be doing).  I was astonished to learn just how perfect our team was.  As it turns out, our team’s practices and performances on the field convey a few different themes.

A secular world view probably best applies to sports.  From when we are young, we are told that practice makes perfect.  Actually, it does not make perfect, but it does makes permanent.  Good practice leads to good habits while the opposite is also true.  Another belief that I heard was that the more effort a person puts into something, the better the result will be.  When I selected my team members, I chose mostly my friends, but also people with different strengths, that I thought would work together well and better the team as a whole.

Our team’s first practice was Thursday at 3:00 pm.  We all met down on the lacrosse field for a scrimmage to determine the positions everyone would play.  After thirty minutes of playing, we realized that some people needed to be moved to different positions.  After that, we played a little better, but still could use some improvement.  Then, it hit me; we needed to improve our teamwork.  From then on, we kept our focus on playing as a team and playing to the team’s strengths, not the strengths of the individual players.  I believe that this secular view of football worked perfectly.  We practiced working together, as team, and we improved our ability to perform.  Apparently, our practices have worked because we have won all of our last three games against teams with people that were very much larger than our players.  I wish I could find a job with these guys, but I doubt that will happen.

football or job apps

Someone had to take the picture, so I couldn’t be in the shot.  If only we had a drone, or maybe a selfie-stick.

The religious world view of sports is a little different than the secular world view.  The first view that comes to mind from that perspective, relating to football is when a team is on their own goal line, with one down left to score and win or go home.  In this type of position, this view works perfectly because the team is essentially living on a prayer.  You see how I just quoted Bon Jovi there?  Also, most announcers say something along the lines of this when a team is in a must make situation: “They have to make this one.  The QB drops back and launches up a prayer.”  Once in a while, the team’s prayers are answered and the wide receiver makes the catch.

The second view that comes to mind when thinking about football occurs in the captain’s pre-game speech.  The team gathers in a tight circle and prays together asking for a win, after the captain speaks.  An interesting fact to point out is that not all people are religious, but all of the players participate or are at least present at the site of the speech.  This most likely occurs because of the fact that the pre-game speech is also a tradition.

Lastly, flag football relates to the “American Experience”.  The “American Experience” is about bettering ourselves as people.  The teamwork involved in each practice and game teaches responsibility and proper conduct as well as athleticism.  Responsibility and proper conduct help to better people by improving the way in which they act.  Athleticism works more literally, by improving a person’s ability to perform.

Flag football demonstrates the theme of a team.  Football can be viewed through a secular world view, a religious world view, or a combination of both.  Finally, the “American Experience” is about improving people and their state of condition; in my team’s case, flag football does exactly this because of the teamwork involved in practice and games.

With football in the bag, it’s time for me to start my job hunt.  I’ve been procrastinating on this since I still have some time at school.  I have a few faster classes that I need to wrap up in the summer, so technically, I don’t need to start looking for a job yet, but I really should.  I don’t want to stay in Jersey, so I applied to jobs mainly in New York and Boston.  I applied to Moody’s and Goldman Sachs in New York for a financial path. I’ll post an update as soon as I hear back.  Football will have to stay on the back burner for a bit.  Can’t exactly go pro.

Siena’s Dog Pound

dog pound siena college

Recently, I attended the Siena Saint’s Dog Pound sign-up.  The Dog Pound is a club where students can join for only five dollars, and get free tickets to all of the men’s and women’s basketball games, in order to cheer on Siena’s two teams.  The Dog Pound illustrates the themes of Foundations by relating to the person, our society, and nature.

The Siena Saint’s Dog Pound sign-up was held on/at 8 o’clock.  I attended this event so as to join the Siena Saint’s Dog Pound (Club) because the Dog Pound’s main purpose is to be Siena’s cheering section and spirit squad in the stands at each of the men’s and women’s basketball games.

The Dog Pound relates to the theme of the person because this club, which is the biggest at Siena College, is a massive group of people.  Each person is an individual that brings his personality to the group.  Since there are so many participants of every age, gender, race, ethnicity, and culture, the Dog Pound is very diverse.  Each individual in the Dog Pound has two responsibilities, which are to cheering for the Saints as they play, and having fun while you’re at the game.  This club gives all of its participants an opportunity to come together for a common cause, and grow as a people and a society as they learn from themselves and others.

The Dog Pound can be seen as a society because of its internal setup.  This club unites all the different people and gives them the single goal of cheering on the Saints as best they can so that they will work together as a society to achieve it.  People get the chance to interact with each other and express themselves.  One of the great things about the Dog Pound is the fact that part of fund-raised proceeds are given to local charities and other important organizations that try to better the outside society by improving the community we live in.

No community is perfect, just as no society is perfect, but that does not mean that nothing can be done.  With the help of the local government, charitable organizations, some of which the Dog Pound sends money to, clean up our community.  Siena’s campus is one of the cleanest, most natural campuses in the area.  Nature is defined as anything that is not man-made, so aside from the buildings and the side-walks, the land Siena College is on contains a lot of nature.  Along with sending money to charitable organizations, the Dog Pound also puts money toward the up-keep of the Siena’s campus.  The grass is always cut and kept neat, leaves are raked in the fall, and the animals that live here are left alone.  We can’t live without nature, so it is important to care for it; the Dog Pound has the right idea.

Although the Siena Saint’s basketball season has no started yet, I have learned a great deal about the Dog Pound, its purpose, and it’s relation to the Foundations themes by reading about the club and talking to the founder.  The Dog Pound is something that everyone should join.  I know the experience is going to be amazing.  The biggest thing I learned about the Dog Pound was its relation to the person, our society, and nature.  When I first heard about the club, I did not think about its purpose and its relation to anything; I just thought it would be fun.

The Siena Saint’s Dog Pound is an amazing club that relates to all of the themes of Foundations in one way or another.  The individuals that make up the club, combined with the interaction among everyone in the club leads to an awesome experience that I would recommend to anyone.

Internship Experience

In early January of this semester, I began looking for possible internships for the spring term.  I went online and searched for internships in the fields of human resources and management.  Unfortunately, CareerPortal did not have as many options as I had hoped.  My next move was to go to S Hall 301 and talk to Anne Anderson.  She gave me a list of internships to choose from.  I chose six internships in the areas of human resources and management.  I interviewed with a few possible companies, but none of them seemed to interest me very much.  In regard to my interview with those companies, I felt very comfortable with the process because I had already interview for at least five other positions throughout the fall semester.

One week later, I received a call from Tim Johnson, the Assistant Manager at ACX Investors.  He stated that he had received my fax and would like to meet with me.  Mr. Johnson stated that no interview was required, but that there would be an orientation on February 19th at 1:00 PM.  At the orientation, Mr. Johnson introduced me to his entire office, which consisted of about twenty people; everyone seemed very nice, and they were all eager to work with me.  Mr. Johnson then brought me into the conference room, where he told me a little bit about the company and what to expect during the course of the internship.  Mr. Johnson and I then created my schedule for the semester.

The internship at ACX Investors was a class-style internship, which consisted of three-hour learning sessions and a plethora of shadow days.  The learning sessions were much like a night class at Siena.  I would come into the office with my notebook, and Mr. Johnson would lecture on both ACX Investors as a corporation and the job of a financial representative.  It is interesting to note that at ACX Investors, a financial representative can take one of two tracks – sales or management.  The choice was up to the individual, and would affect all future meetings, training, and licensing.  During the learning sessions, I basically just took notes and focused on understanding everything that Mr. Johnson explained.  Throughout each session, Mr. Johnson would quiz me on what I had learned and ask if I had any other questions.  In total, I attended fifteen classes.

In regard to the shadow days, I would go with the sales representatives to their appointments if the potential customer approved.  Overall, I shadowed forty-four different sales calls – approximately two calls per representative.  This process entailed a lot of traveling, but it was very interesting and well worth it.  Each sales call was approximately two hours.  During travel time, the financial representative would share with me his “game-plan” for the call.  Then, once we arrived at the meeting place, I just observed him in action.  My consistent attendance at sales calls allowed me to apply the information that Mr. Johnson had lectured on.

Without a doubt, the sales calls that I went on with financial representatives were the most interesting part of the internship.  It was really valuable to watch the financial representatives in action because I could see how they set up their schedules and how they performed under pressure.  The best part is that this process gave me a clear picture of the job; I could definitely see myself as a financial representative, although I am not quite sure whether I would take the sales or management path.  Before taking this internship, I had not even considered working for a financial company because I had never liked math.  Interestingly enough, I can easily handle the math required for the jobs at ACX Investors.

The least interesting part of the internship was learning about the computer software that employees of ACX Investors use to keep track of their clients.  The software had some amazing capabilities, but starring at a screen for hours was not fun.  Using this program, we ran a multitude of different scenarios using various conditions, such as type of insurance, type of stock, age of the client, etc.

I learned a lot from my experiences at ACX Investors.  First, the company culture is awesome.  The dress-code is strictly professional, but the atmosphere is much more relaxed.  Most of the members of the office are very close friends, having known each other for a very long time.  The majority of the members work in the “bull-pen”, which is full of desks that have no dividers; there are no cubicles at all, which allows everyone to interact with each other freely.  Lunch breaks are very entertaining because everyone tries to cram into a small room.  My favorite part of the culture is that every other week, Mr. Johnson and the other office members do something fun together.  One week they went paint-balling.  Another week they went rock-climbing.  Unfortunately, none of these events fit into my schedule, so I was unable to attend.

This internship reinforces the fact that I want to find a company culture that is fun.  ACX Investors definitely meets that requirement.  Secondly, I had never considered a sales position before because I had always felt uncomfortable in high pressure selling situations.  However, the training that ACX Investors provides is very extensive and has the ability to mold very efficient and effective financial representatives.

Mr. Johnson was a very effective supervisor, and was also very flexible.  He essentially worked his schedule around mine, in order to give me the most exposure to the business as he could.  He lectured for each of the class sessions, and held a “wrap-up” meeting at the end of each shadow day to debrief.  The only suggestion that I can offer for improvement of the process would be for him to incorporate a greater variety of teaching styles for the learning sessions because some of them provided more information than I could handle; computer science students call this information overload.

I would definitely recommend this internship to anyone interesting in exploring a career in the financial industry.  Students that may be interesting in sales or management would also benefit from this internship.  The internship definitely met my expectations.

Long Beach Island, New Jersey

Long Beach Island New Jersey

Every year, I go to Long Beach Island, New Jersey, on vacation in late July and stay through early August.  This is the beach I look forward to going to because of its location and beauty.

At six o’clock in the morning, I walk to the beach from my four story, pink colored, rough, cement wall motel that contains an eight foot in-ground pool, and a free breakfast with a newspaper each morning.  The air is a cool sixty degrees, crisp and fresh, like that of a high mountain, with no smell of salt, as I walk down the beach to the shoreline.  Each step sinks into the damp, but soft, white sand covering miles of beach.  As I approach the water line, I can feel the increasing moisture of thirteen foot, dark blue waves, that crash on certain parts of the beach hurling thousands of multicolored clam shells ranging from one inch to three inches in size, small black and blue scallops, and packs of mussels trapped in swamp green, unbreakable seaweed and hard balls of sand.  The water is a cold sixty five degrees that warms to seventy degrees around lunch time.  The water temperature is not very pleasant in the morning, but it wakes one up quickly.  As I walk along the beach, I can feel a cool flowing breeze drop from the troposphere and push north along the shore.  Occasionally, this mixes with the even cooler breeze that flies off the ocean, creating a bone-chilling, sharp wind that I am glad does not come very often.  Continuing my walk, I make my way around scattered, detailed sand castles made by beach goers from the past day when I was still on the road to Long Beach.

Long Beach Island

I can see that where the beach ends on my left, there are hundreds of three story motels, none of which are vacant, which exhibit multiple colors, including green, purple, pink, and orange, followed by groups of smaller motels colored the same, but filled with much less people.  In the distance, on the horizon, I can see the monstrous Pier One.  Pier One, also known as Morrey’s Pier, is a sight to see, with over two thousand feet of wide, beige water slides, a crowded water park with extremely warm, eighty degree water, hundreds of nozzles and fountains spraying water everywhere, and the gigantic, three story high Ferris Wheel, standing tall in bright red.  In the night time, the Ferris wheel lights up in a rainbow of colors and ten different patterns.  The patterns, some of which I remember, include a yellow, blue, pink, and red star, a red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet circle, and a pink, purple, blue and green spinning square, which is my favorite.

Morey Pier LBI NJ

From here, I run back to the motel to eat breakfast.

The beach is very much different in the afternoon.  As I approach the beach, I see crowds of people of a variety of ages, ethnicities, and body types wandering around or laying on towels soaking up the sun.

beach girls

Walking down the cracking wooden steps to the steaming, golden grains of sand, I can’t wait to set up my eight foot, pink, purple, blue, green, yellow, and orange umbrella, and sit down in my teal water chair, set up next to the lifeguard.  Once, I sit down, I look around and notice that the burning sun is gleaming off the sand, and the temperature is around ninety eight degrees, which means that it is time to go in the seventy degree refreshing water to surf.  As I paddle out on my white board with two green pin stripes, I glance at the mile long jetties filled with moss covered boulders that break the waves.  The first of the fish-filled waves comes carrying a Skate with brown spots and an orange stingray like body right at me.  Luckily, I catch the wave quickly as it breaks.  The six foot wave creates a small tube with a mass of cloudy, blue water and sends me flying into shore on my board.  At the end of the afternoon, I head home and rest.