win this week’s care package!

Care Package Front

Happy Friday, friends! It’s time for this week’s CARE PACKAGE GIVEAWAY QUESTION!

All first and second semester students are eligible to win a care package – just post an answer to the following question in the comments before 11:59 p.m. Sunday to be included in today’s drawing. The winner will be chosen randomly from all of the respondents on Monday morning. We hope you win!

If you could have any music group that no longer exists play at your birthday party, which one would you choose?

Finals Passport Challenge!

Finals season is nearly upon us! Need some support? Want to connect with great resources? Complete the New Student Programs Passport to Phenomenal Finals! Your official passport will be placed in your mailbox during the week of November 16, and you have until noon on Friday, December 11 to complete the challenge! Wondering how to win? Here’s the deal:

The Research Librarians, Transformative Speaking Program Peer Mentors, and Writing Center Fellows will all be holding regular drop-in hours from now until the end of the semester to help students with their finals work, and they want to meet you! Stop by each of these three resources before noon on Friday, December 11, make an introduction, and have your passport stamped for a chance to win great prizes, including one of two $25 Hampstore gift cards and the grand prize, a Kindle Fire! The days and times that each resource will be available are clearly printed on your passport — all you need to do is seek them out.

Once you’ve completed your passport, submit it in person to Jessica Ortiz in the Dean of Students Office (above the Merrill Living Room). We’ll have a purple collection box at the front desk that you can drop your completed passport into when you arrive. The drawing will be held on the afternoon of Friday, December 11.

We hope you’ll take advantage of this great opportunity to connect with campus resources AND be entered to win some great prizes! Have questions? Contact us at Have fun!

win this week’s care package!

Care Package Front

All first and second semester students are eligible to win a care package – just post an answer to the following question in the comments before 11:59 p.m. SUNDAY to be included in this week’s drawing. The winner will be chosen randomly from all of the respondents Tuesday morning. We hope you win!

If you could be a contestant on any game show, which would you choose?

ready, set, geo!

Adapted from a post written by former program assistant Kaylie Vezina 14F

GEOInterested in studying abroad while at Hampshire? Wondering how and when to start thinking about it? On Tuesday, November 3 from 3:30-4:30 p.m. in FPH 101, Katie Irwin and Morgan Kapinos from the Global Education Office (GEO) set out to answer this question for a group of interested students. Wondering what you missed? Read on for great information!

What Happened:
After some brief introductions, Katie and Morgan introduced a Powerpoint to take students through the top ten steps in preparing for a semester away, which allowed students to ask questions and begin thinking about how a global experience might fit into their Division II or Division III goals. Participants were then introduced to the GEO website, including pages on how to prepare and great resources for finding exchange and field study opportunities. Katie and Morgan also made sure to highlight some short-term opportunities coming up in the coming year.

The Top Ten Steps in Preparing a Semester Away!

  • Step 1: Plan Early. Start Planning Now. The earlier you start planning the more options you will find, and the more time you’ll have to discuss your interests with your advisor/committee and have them help you with resources and ideas for your search. By planning early and communicating with your faculty, you’ll be better able  to incorporate study abroad into your academic program. What’s more — some programs and study abroad scholarships have deadlines a year in advance, so it’s smart to know what you want to do as far ahead of time as possible. If you don’t already have one or yours is soon to expire, this is also a great time to apply for or renew your passport!
  • Step 2: Know the “Why.” Ask yourself why you want to study abroad, and then ask yourself what your career goals are and how studying abroad will help you complete these goals. What do you want to do when you are abroad? Are you interested in language learning, having an internship, service learning/community engagement, taking classes, having an independent study, etc.? These guiding questions will help you to make important decisions about your global experience.
  • Step 3: Know the “What.” In what type of program would you like to enroll? There are many options to consider, like directly enrolling in a university abroad, going abroad through a field-based or classroom-based program provider, or designing your own independent project abroad. Some other factors to consider when knowing the “what” are living arrangements, level of cultural immersion, travel, and level of independence.
  • Step 4: Understand Hampshire’s Eligibility Requirements. In order to study abroad, a student must:
    • At least be filed for Division II (note: Division III students are only eligible to be away during their first semester of Division III)
    • Be in good academic and disciplinary standing
    • Meet with CASA
  • Step 5: Understand Your Options at Hampshire: GEO hosts Navigating Study Abroad sessions every Thursday at 4 p.m. in the Airport Lounge, which is a great way to get started. GEO also has Peer Advisors with whom you can meet to learn more. Both resources will help you to better understand the differences between Hampshire Exchange and Field Study.
  • Step 6: Understand the Finances: Contact the Financial Aid Office to learn more about how your financial aid might transfer for a semester abroad. Find and apply to Hampshire sources of funding and scholarships. Find and apply to outside sources of funding and scholarships. Go to Student Financial Services, and see what they can do to help.
  • Step 7: Research Your Options: Wondering where to start? Check out GEO’s website. Review the searchable databases they have available, and meet with a GEO Program Advisor to learn more. Don’t forget to check out scholarship options as well!
  • Step 8: Fulfull Pre-requisites: Educate yourself on the pre-requisites of the program you are interested in. If it requires learning a language—start learning now! Make plans to take the pre-requisite(s) needed for your program to ensure you have them completed before you depart.
  • Step 9: Get Others on Board: Preparing for study abroad without support from those around you can be overwhelming. Talk to your committee, CASA, GEO, and to your family and friends as you continue in your planning. Make sure they know what you want to do and why you want to do it, so that they can help you to achieve your goals.
  • Step 10: APPLY!: If you’re applying to Hampshire Exchange, you’ll need to submit your application to GEO. If you’re applying for a Field Study, you’ll apply directly to the program. Also, make sure you keep these deadlines in mind:
    • Hampshire Exchange – early October/early November for spring, early March/early April for fall.
    • Field Study – Varies by program, but do note the College’s Enrollment Notification Deadline for each semester.

Whether you’re just starting to consider the possibility of studying abroad or are already making plans, the Global Education Office (GEO) is your best resource. The GEO office is located on the ground floor of the Merrill Student Life Center, opposite the CLA, and staff and peer advisors are eager to help. Check out their website for more information, or contact them at

Happy planning!

navigating classroom discussion

Classroom DiscussionsHaving trouble speaking up in class? Want to learn more about classroom dynamics? On Tuesday, October 20 from 3:30-4:30 p.m., two peer mentors from the Transformative Speaking Program (Anna and Samara!) set out to explore these issues with an audience of enthusiastic participants. Interested in getting an overview of what happened at this workshop and what resources were introduced? Read on!

What Happened:

After some warm-up activities to get conversation flowing, the facilitators asked students to identify some of the reasons why speaking in class can feel uncomfortable. Concerns over discussion group size, introversion, conversation moving too quickly, fear of saying the wrong thing, being interrupted, unexpected tangents, language barriers, and not having anything to say emerged as common themes. Perhaps these ring true for you too! The facilitators then led the group in pair-shares to encourage conversation about how best to approach these issues.

What We Learned:
Talking in class can feel intimidating and hard sometimes. That’s okay! Everyone in the class has a responsibility to help create the discussion together. You’re all collaborating.

  • Read with the intention of preparing for class discussion
    Reading for understanding and retention are important, but are you considering potential discussion points while you read? It can feel easier to speak in class when you know you have something to say — this can range from writing down notes and questions you want to bring up to referencing Moodle posts.
  • Ask ahead
    Always feel as though you’ve focused on the wrong section of the reading when class discussion starts? Consider asking your professors what topics are most likely to be covered or if they’ve prepared any prompts so that you can use this knowledge to guide your reading.
  • Write your thoughts down
    If you have a good thought in class, don’t be afraid to write it down before you say it — sometimes seeing it written can make you feel more confident. You’re also more likely to remember if the conversation goes on a tangent or you aren’t able to chime in as quickly as you’d like.
  • Reflect back what other people are saying to help the flow
    Starting a response with something like “What I’m hearing people say is…” can be helpful in focusing the discussing and bringing ideas together. If you’re having trouble coming up with something to say, building off what someone else has to say is a good start. You can also help others speak more this way, directing your comments towards them!
  • Breathe and be on time!
    Class discussion can be difficult enough without feeling self-conscious about being late. Give yourself plenty of time to arrive in class and be present to the conversation.
  • Consider your needs
    Think about what you can ask for from yourself, peers, friends, teachers, family, and other support systems to help you to participate more successfully in class discussion. The more comfortable you are, the better you’ll feel.

Get In Touch:
Want to connect with the Transformative Speaking Peer Mentors? Check out the Transformative Speaking Program website for information, and like their Facebook page for details on drop-in hours, which take place Sunday-Thursday from 5-9 p.m. in the Library’s Bradford Room (2nd floor by the Robert Seydel Reading Room).

Have questions? Need more information? Contact us at We’re happy to help!

win this week’s care package!

Care Package Front

Happy Friday, friends. It’s time for this week’s care package giveaway question!

All first and second semester students are eligible to win a care package – just post an answer to the following question in the comments before 11:59 p.m. SUNDAY to be included in the drawing for this week’s care package. The winner will be chosen randomly from all of the respondents on Monday morning. Ready? Okay!

If you could suddenly possess an extraordinary talent in one of the arts, what would you like it to be?