Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Written at 11:00 pm:

I just now have another opportunity to record more thoughts about the day. First, I must report how thrilling it was to be in class most of the day and to see our faculty and students so engaged. I attended a huge university and most of my classes were lectures, of course. To see the back and forth of conversation, the steady questioning, and the opportunities provided to students to test ideas and express insights was a great reminder of just how special our brand of education is. And every professor knew the students so well, which will make for great letters of recommendation in the future. But what truly struck me was how much the students seemed to be enjoying the classes and fully involved with the learning process. I want to enroll and do this every day. Next, I want to report on my wonderful dinner with President Rinaldi’s family, including Domenico who is a FY student at Whittier. First, I was served a bowl of pasta with peas, and it was quite tasty. This was followed by a green salad, tomatoes with mozzarella, and turkey with artichokes. Then cake. I urged Domenico to vie for President for a Day next year so that I might once again find myself invited to the Rinaldi home. The dinner was delicious and the conversation lively, and I was energized for an evening of class. My final class was Professor Sean Morris’s screenwriting seminar (to which I arrived late because I had to do a little unexpected work related to my “day job”). When I arrived, the class was already in the midst of watching “The Illusionist” and studying its structure as a screenplay. Since I missed the beginning, I had to catch on to the meaning of Sean’s outbursts of “push” every few minutes. The class ended with a lively discussion – even though it was 10:00 p.m.I thank all those who gave me the opportunity to experience life as a student today, and I especially thank Tina Rinaldi. I ended the day with extraordinary admiration for our faculty and with great optimism about the students we attract to Whittier and the lives they will lead. Ah, to be a student again and to be one on this campus!


Ah! The life of a busy senior. I have a few minutes before running off to a home-cooked meal (all of President Rinaldi’s friends are envious and have led me to believe I am in for a wonderful treat). My day has been a busy one, and amazingly enjoyable. I painted the Rock with my Palmer “sister.” I lounged with other Palmers and Tina’s friends over lunch. And I loved all of the classes I have attended thus far: David Iyam’s Expressive Arts of Africa (learning about the roles of women in polygamous societies, and the importance of children), Stephen Cook’s choir (I was so relieved to be standing next to Megan Gerber and having her voice cover up my own; and I also learned how much fun it would be to travel with the choir to Hawaii this weekend); and Charles Adams’ “Crit Pro” (I learned so much about Derrida and deconstruction). Tonight I have Sean Morris’s seminar on screenwriting and I can’t wait!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Meeting with President Rinalid

Painting the Rock 2010

This morning I painted the Rock in Palmer colors with Spanish major Maria Alva '10.

Having Lunch

Friends: I am at the library, and am impressed with the numbers of students who were already here and hard at work before I arrived at 9:30. Who knew that morning was such an active study time? Maybe that is why so few students get up to walk with me at 7:30; perhaps they are already in line waiting for the library doors to open. I will have to check on this.

I did, however, have a good walk with President Rinaldi. Her friend Gino Marrone showed up as well. He also is an early riser, but I learned that President Rinaldi prefers evening to morning. That must be why she would do what I never did as a student, which is sign up for night classes. I do hope that I will be awake during Professor Morris’s screenwriting class tonight.

After our walk, President Rinaldi gave me her Palmer t-shirt and sweatshirt, which I am wearing today. (All of you other Society members, please don’t think I am overlooking you! Give me a t-shirt and I’ll find another time to wear it.) And I will be taking part in the tradition of painting the Rock with my sisters-for-the-day. I will try not to get any paint on this nice outfit.

I need to sign off now so that I can check my email and prepare for my first class on “Expressive Arts of Africa” with Professor Iyam. I look forward to all of my classes, although I’m a wreck about choir. I’ve already conferred with President Rinaldi, who advised that I just lip-sync. But what if Professor Cook wants me to solo…

Monday, March 29, 2010