Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students

Boston

How to Survive the Boston Transit System: Tips for Commuter Students

I remember the days of living in a dorm and walking to class. Rolling out of bed, throwing on a sweatshirt and brushing my teeth before taking a casual stroll across campus. Then, later, popping back over to my room to take a nap or grab a snack. Now, as a commuter student, I’m a compulsive Google Maps refresher, with a 20 minute walk and a 30 minute bus ride. It’s tough being a commuter student, and it isn’t helped by the commuting options in Boston being unreliable at best and completely broken at worst. Here are some commuting tips from someone who’s walked, biked, bused, and braved the MBTA to get to Simmons. Always check before you go. The transit systems in Boston are constantly changing, and even if your commute is usually consistent, that can change on any random day. A holiday might mean that the buses are running on a different schedule. A road can suddenly be blocked off for construction. Don’t even get me started on the MBTA. If something’s down,…


St. Patrick’s Day in Boston

One of the best parts of being in Boston during March is the city’s St. Patrick’s Day festivities, which took place this past weekend (March 17th)! Everyone gets into the holiday spirit, and people from all over the greater Boston area come into the city to celebrate. A highlight of the holiday weekend is a yearly visit from Irish rock band the Dropkick Murphys at MGM Fenway, and “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” can be heard in every neighborhood’s bars and pubs which are usually decked out in green decorations and Irish flags.  While some like to get out of the city to avoid the crowds, I was really excited this year to see the annual South Boston St. Patrick’s Day/Evacuation Day parade. If you want to learn more about the parade’s history you can check out the website! As a dual degree student at Simmons, I am currently taking a public history course where we have been visiting and interacting with a lot of Boston’s history. Inspired by this class and conversations I have…


Transportation In Boston

For what seems like the entirety of this spring semester, the MBTA has been out of commission. And the green line is out again until the second week of March after being worked on in January. Many people have asked me “does this always happen?” Yes and no. The train, most commonly, the infamous green line will be shut down almost every three months regularly. But, I have never seen two shutdowns this close to each other. In my time living here, I have had to anticipate these shutdowns.  Fret not, while construction is annoying, there are still ways to move about the city without it. While the T gets a facelift, students and staff have had to find new methods of coming to campus.  Of course, the easiest option for the down on their luck commuter is to have a friend with a car, having a classmate with a car can also prove useful. Talk to your peers to see if anyone is available for carpooling! While walking from Allston to Seaport might not…


Life in Boston: Beginning of Spring Semester

Happy beginning of Spring semester!  As I begin my 4th semester here at Simmons, I have really been reflecting on the past year and a half I have spent in Boston and everything I have learned both inside and outside of the classroom. Since moving from California I have had to adapt and learn the many parts that come with living on the East Coast, and I have to continue learning as I go! Recently a large portion of the Green Line trains have been down, which at first really freaked me out. I live close to the Green Line and use it to get almost everywhere in my life, so I was concerned with getting to work and the places I meet my friends regularly. Luckily for me, this has pushed me to become familiar with my local buses, which I had been nervous to use in the past because of their schedules. Now I can easily make it to everything I need to without having to use the Green Line so I will…


Wrapping up the Semester

It has been a chaotic semester for me, but this week marks the end of my first year as a graduate student at Simmons! It is hard to believe that just eight months ago I packed up my life and moved almost 3,000 miles away from home, but I wouldn’t change a single thing about my first year at Simmons. While I am filled with stress in finishing up my last project and papers, I cannot wait for the fun activities we have planned in class this week. I am about to submit my final LibGuide for LIS 407: Information Sources and Services, where I created a research guide intended for anyone looking to plan a trip to my home area of California’s Central Coast! Last week in that class we had a huge potluck where everyone in the class contributed so we had so many wonderful treats for our last session. This week, for LIS 438: Introduction to Archival Theory and Practice, we get to take a trip to visit the Massachusetts Historical Society…


Longer Days and Warmer Weather

While I wasn’t super thrilled at losing an hour of sleep last weekend. I can definitely say I’m very happy the weather has gotten warmer and it’s not dark at 4:30! This has been really helping my overall mood and study motivation as we creep closer and closer to the end of the semester. Have you sat outside and done homework on campus before? I definitely recommend it. The trees in front of the 1 Palace Rd. building provide lots of shade and a cool breeze. The outdoor patio on the 5th floor of the Management building also provides stunning views and warm sunny rays while you take a break. One of my favorite spots to study is near the trees that look like they’re wearing sweaters between the Main College Building and the library. I’m glad they’ve been cozy all winter long! What’s your favorite study spot on campus? Or even off campus. I love studying in my office but I’m always partial to a nice coffee shop to work. I’d also always recommend…


Fighting the Mid-Semester Blues with a Little Green

This Friday is St. Patrick’s Day, a big holiday here in Boston. I’ve lived my whole life in New England, so it’s always been an interesting day for me, but this year I have met a few out-of-town friends through Simmons who are excited about their first St. Patty’s. On the one hand, I’ve got archival subject headings to identify and a Civil War literature review to write, but on the other, I’ve got corn beef hash and brown bread to eat.  School’s important and staying on top of assignments and readings is essential. However, I just want to encourage my fellow SLIS students to remember to enjoy the now. I know that sounds a little silly, but we only have so long here at Simmons and many of us will leave this school and this city within a few years. Beyond that, I think it’s good to take a step back and plan some time for yourself. This time of year a lot of us fall into a sort of slump. I’ve seen a…


Summer Dreamin’ to Bust the Mid-Term Monotony

I have reached the monotonous section of the semester. School is chugging away, meaning there are papers to write, books to read, lib guides to build, and I am looking for the time needed to cook something more nutritious than top ramen or a quesadilla. If anybody told you the life of a graduate student is glamourous, they were seriously delusional. The graduate students I know tend to drink more coffee than is good for them, they struggle with anxiety, and all of them can’t wait to be doing the work that this degree will allow them to do. In library school many of the assignments serve as models. While it is necessary for a professor to have a standardized assignment to give out, it can personally be frustrating knowing that my work, as of yet, will not make a direct impact on a library or archive. The work I do is stuck in theoretical land. I am looking forward to truly doing the work, directly shaping collections and helping patrons. To expedite the process…


Mid-Semester Update

And just like that, we are almost halfway through the semester! It’s crazy how quickly ithas been zipping past. At this stage in the semester the larger projects are beginning to loomlarge in my to do list. My class on reference librarianship asks each of the students to develop aresearch guide. This is a cool project because I can add this to my resume not only as a skill butas an example of my work. In my archiving class we are learning the theory and practice behindprocessing plans and writing finding aids. On the library side of things this semester’s homeworkfeels very practical. I get to try my own hand at things which librarians regularly need toaccomplish. Slowly but surely, I am developing into a librarian!On the history end of things, I am off to a nerdy and exciting start. My history class thissemester is Transnational Labor History with Professor Sullivan. The topic of my final paper forthis course is loosely going to be tied to the labor of central Washington’s fruit industry. I amlooking…


Thesis Thoughts

Hello everyone! I hope everybody’s been having a good semester so far. It’s crazy to think that this is potentially my last semester with Simmons. I’m currently writing my History thesis and taking LIS 456 – Records Mangement. Taking a class alongside the thesis is a lot of work but it’s been nice to be able to switch my brain off from historical writing to focus on an LIS project. Managing my classes and two jobs requires a lot of time management and planning out my days well in advance. I’ve found it’s super easy to get caught up in my to-do list and then forget about self care and doing fun small little things with a little bit of my free time. I’ve made a short list of things that don’t take a ton of time in the moment but you can walk away from feeling better. There are many others but these have really been helping me when I need a break. Good luck to everyone writing their thesis this semester and to…


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