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Legislators Are People Too

When most people think about the government, they imagine the President or Congress. They imagine wealthy men and women in expensive suits walking elaborate marble halls in Washington, D.C. They imagine people and situations that are above the ordinary person. What they often don’t remember, though, is that even the representatives of our government are ordinary people too. After all, it is their job to listen to their constituents between important committee meetings and campaign fundraising.

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Liberal Arts Symposium – The Mountain Day of the Mind

Every academic Juniatian’s favorite school holiday: Liberal Arts Symposium.  LAS is an annual event in the spring where classes are cancelled and students from all disciplines show off their work to the rest of the community.  Students present on research, independent studies, class projects like speeches, stories, and art, and anything else you can dream of.  My favorite presentations tend to be passion projects where students draw inspiration from a particular class and apply it to a subject they’re interested in, or dive in deeper than they could in class.  Presentations last about 10-12 minutes and leave a few minutes for questions and discussion at the end.  You can choose to stay for the entire panel (they typically have a theme!) or you can switch rooms and go see something totally different!

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Peace and Conflict Studies at Juniata

When I transferred to Juniata for the spring 2018 semester, I found my home in the Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS) Department. As a PACS student, I’ve been offered an insane amount of opportunities. The Baker Institute for PACS frequently funds and organizes student trips to professional conferences. I was actually invited to be a student member of the Baker Institute Advisory Board to offer my perspective surrounding the trips and opportunities that the Institute offers!

Last semester, I attended the Nobel Peace Prize Forum in Minneapolis, MN, where I discussed the abolition of nuclear weaponry with those acting in the field. Most recently, I traveled to Washington D.C. for the Lemkin Summit to End Genocide and Mass Atrocities, which focused mainly on injustices in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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Campus Cats

A soft meow is probably the last thing you would expect to hear walking down a dorm room hallway, but it’s not uncommon at Juniata. Emotional support animals are welcome on campus, and two towers of East have even been opened as pet-friendly housing for next year.

I got my cat Dante when he was a baby, and with the help of the Student Accessibility Services, I was able to bring him to campus as my emotional support animal this past semester. Living with Dante has been a joy, and he has done wonders for my mental health! Dante encourages me to get up for class, usually because he needs breakfast, and gives great cuddles in times of need.

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The Gambian Art Coalition

I went into my sophomore year at Juniata with a full schedule. Three jobs, two internships, and a full load of credits. Never in a million years did I think I would have the time or the ability to co-found a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) as an undergrad.

The NGO I cofounded with two of my great friends, Evelyn McCammon and Sarah Borgardt, is called The Gambian Art Coalition. It was an idea brought to us by Professor Nagengast in the Politics department. He’s been travelling to The Gambia for the past 15 years and has made many great friends amongst the Gambians.

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