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

Boston

Pancakes and Friends

Peggy Hogan-Rao

  Students starting at Simmons might be completely new to the city of Boston. Although I graduate in December, it was only last fall that I started feeling like Boston is a place where I have friends. You can live in a city for months and not feel loved by those around you. I started going line dancing with friends at Loretta’s Last Call way back in September. It is Boston’s only country bar in Fenway, next to Fenway Park and House of Blues. (Check out my blog post about Loretta’s here).      This week is the start of Lent, a time when Christians reflect on how to prepare for Easter. Whether you go to church or not, pancakes are fun. I studied abroad in Ireland a few years back, and a favorite tradition I picked up from my time abroad is Pancake Tuesday (also called Shrove Tuesday). The day before Lent in the UK and Ireland everyone eats pancakes. I love this tradition, and I introduced it to my line dancing friends. A…


Moving Across the Country

crouchw

In September, I moved to Boston from Texas so I could attend Simmons and try and get a real winter. I’m only 3 months in and it’s already way colder here than it ever gets in Texas. I wanted to go over some of the things that were part of the challenge of moving here and how Simmons helped me with the move. The major thing was finding a place to live which can be difficult wherever you go. Finding a comfortable space that is also affordable is a challenging process. Thankfully, Simmons has a really great listing that students can access that lists available places within the area. It took me a while but I managed to find a little place in West Roxbury that a Simmons alum owns and managed to find a great roommate. The next thing to deal with was how to get to school and figuring out public transportation for the first time. In Texas, there’s no real convenient transportation service because everybody has cars and because Texas is such…


A Break for Some Fun!

Peggy Hogan-Rao

  This week, I tried to have some fun.  I was assigned three books to read this week for my YA Library Collections class I spent most of my week studying and reading! The books are: Judy Blume’s Forever; Seventeenth Summer by Maureen Daly; and Looking for Alaska by John Green. I gave myself a goal on Monday. If I could finish all of the readings for my Writing For Children class, and get halfway done with Looking For Alaska, then I would do something fun on Tuesday night. Howdy, cowgirl! Out I went to a country bar.    Walking from Simmons to Fenway, I had never realized how “hopping” the area is. Before heading to Fenway on a Tuesday night, I checked to make sure there was no Red Sox game. The crowds out in Fenway Park can get crazy on game night. With no game, I was good to go line dancing. Growing up listening to country music, I was really excited to learn that there is a country bar in Boston. With…


A Very Merry SLISmas

Katie Carlson

A little over a week ago, my roommate Chloe and I embarked upon a true ‘grad students living in Boston’ adventure when we went hunting for a Christmas tree! A douglas fir wasn’t really an option when we lived together in dorms, and we are both originally from suburban areas, so Christmas tree hunting usually requires a car and a series of bungee cords! Where would we even begin? We floated ordering an Uber, renting a car, begging friends and even ordering a tree to be delivered, but settled on the old fashion way: hoofing it. Chloe, my favorite person on earth, was able to locate various places to pick up the tree, mapped how long it would take us to walk to each, and ensuring that they sold tree stands. We budgeted, made sure we had the cash necessary for the purchase, threw on our raincoats, and set off (in the rain, of course).   When we arrived at the lot, we decided that something between Chloe’s height (5’3″) and my height (5’10”) would…


Public Transport Rant: The Good, The Bad, and The Super Delayed T

Maria Reilova

Being from a small town in Florida means that for most of my life, I have had pretty regular access to a car. My high school didn’t even have a school bus option for where I lived. The closest grocery store was under 5 miles away but there was no direct bus line and if you wanted to walk it would be through 90 degree weather and 100% humidity, not my ideal afternoon out. Also subway systems in Florida just don’t exist since Florida is basically sand. So moving to Boston and having so many public transportation options is a super new concept for me. I’ll start by saying that I am very lucky to have been able to live with my cousin whose from MA and lived in Boston for a little over a year, so when I arrived in August I had a guide waiting with a Charlie Card for me. I still remember though my first T ride alone following along on my phone with google maps. I quickly learned my stops…


Fall is Here!

Sarah Callanan

Fall has arrived!  Well, technically fall doesn’t start until September 22, but it certainly feels like fall.  The weather is getting slightly colder, the leaves are beginning to change, and the fall semester has just begun (my class literally just started last night).  I must say, I really enjoy how classes do not start until September here.  Even the elementary, middle, and high schools in Massachusetts didn’t start until last week (at least that’s when they started in my area).  My entire life, school has always started in early-to-mid August, no matter what state I have lived in.  I’m really enjoying waiting until fall to go back to school.  As the seasons have started to change, I have been trying to partake in some fun fall activities.  Last weekend, I went to the Autumn Arts and Crafts Festival at the Historic Wayside Inn in Sudbury, MA.   It was a great outdoor craft fair with a ton of vendors and exhibits, and I bought some fabulous items!  There seems to be a lot of festivals in…


House Hunting

Ashley Jackson

This summer I decided to stay in Boston and look for a house to move into for the next couple of years. I can only compare this experience to my time I looked for homes and apartments in Austin, so let me tell you the number one thing I have noticed, broker fees. Boston is expensive enough already and to have a broker fee’s, it really adds to the moving expense.  According to an article  published in April 2018, Boston ranks #7 in most expensive cities to live in. The article states the average rent is $2100. In Austin, the rent is expensive, but not quite as much, and there typically is not a broker fee included.  The property managers pay the brokers themselves.  It was quite a shock to see so many places that require a broker fee! However, there are search engines that allow you to choose houses that do not have broker fees.  You will need to be prepared to have patience and compromise and some of the requirements you may have…


A Glimpse of Summer

ShanTil Yell

I had almost forgotten about the feeling of that sweet exhale summer break brings until now. I don’t know if what I’m doing 100% qualifies as a “break” since I am working a lot and still managing to keep my schedule quite full, but it is nice to be doing all of those things without having to worry about homework and readings for a few months! In terms of work, I’m still filling in as a senior substitute at the Somerville Public Library. I love it for…well, many reasons. 1) SPL is an awesome place and you should come visit us, okay? Okay. 2) We’ve got three branches, and I’ve been fortunate enough to work in various roles at each of them. Plus, I have amazing co-workers who have been so helpful and supportive. A little circulation here, some reference desk there, and my personal favorite–the children’s room. I got to do an impromptu preschool story time a couple of weeks ago and it was only a little scary, but mostly a lot of fun…


Of Classes and Museum Passes

Sarah Callanan

Oh my gosh the past few weeks have been so busy!  My class officially started last week and it’s been a wild ride!  It’s been all good so far.  There are a lot of opportunities for group discussion in this class (even more than my last class), so I don’t feel like I’m missing the student interaction part of an in-person class at all!  Admittedly, it is all behind a screen and in a forum, but still.  The summer class is a bit intense though.  We’re fitting 14 weeks’ worth of material into an 8-week class, which is a bit daunting.  But so far everything has been great, and the material is really interesting!  On a more fun-related note, I’ve finally gotten around to doing some more sightseeing!  I went into Boston to go to the Museum of Science with my family.  When my dad was a child, he had a book with a Van de Graaff generator in it, and he’s wanted to see one in person for a long time, so that’s what…


Some Thoughts on Cars and Parking Permits

ShanTil Yell

Hello, people of the world! I’d like to pass along some practical advice about what it’s like to bring your out of state car to Massachusetts, because there are a number of things I’ve had to learn the hard way since I did just that a couple of weeks ago. First off, there are a number of cities in the Greater Boston Area that will require you to have a street parking permit if you aren’t lucky enough to land in a place with a driveway or garage. Know that you have been blessed by the parking gods if such fortune falls upon your head. And since the spaces in the lot behind my apartment complex were already filled up, I was in need of such a permit. I made a big, fat assumption that since I was a grad student living here temporarily, I’d still be able to get some kind of permit. Oh, I was wrong. So very wrong. It turns out that when you’re living here and have your vehicle here, you’re…