Thursday, May 29, 2014

Involvement as a Learning Experience

As I wrap up my first year as a graduate assistant in the Multicultural & International Student Programs Office (MISPO), I think back to the steps that have brought me here. As an undergraduate, I spent my first two years focused on my schoolwork and making friends. Although I was very happy at Hofstra, I knew there had to be more I could get out of my college experience than class and hanging out with friends. I decided to take my first step towards becoming more involved by joining the Student Government Association (SGA).

Relay for Life
My involvement with SGA opened the door to numerous opportunities for me. I was asked to get involved with Relay For Life as the Fundraising Chair. This turned out to be the greatest decision I’ve ever made. Relay for Life is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society that takes place across the country. For the past several years, Hofstra has coordinated Relay for Life on campus which has tremendous participation from the Hofstra community and it has become a Hofstra tradition. Not only did Relay For Life lead to my internship with the American Cancer Society and involvement with Hofstra Hillel, I also made indispensable friendships and learned life-changing lessons.

Ask Big Questions with Hofstra Hillel
These various experiences gave me the necessary skills to excel during my time as the graduate assistant at MISPO. More importantly, these experiences gave me a different perspective on college. When I entered college, I thought it was all about having fun while preparing for my career. After getting more involved, I realized that the things I learn outside of the classroom are equally, if not more, important than the information I learn inside the classroom. As a future teacher, I will undoubtedly encourage my students to step up their involvement outside of their studies so they can be as lucky as I was and get the most out of school.  

There are many available opportunities to get involved at Hofstra. Join a student club, check out Greek Life on campus, participate in intramural sports through the Fitness Center, and go to the abundance of campus events throughout the school year.

Guest Blogger: Rob Canobbio
Second Year Graduate Student, Secondary Social Studies Education

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

MISPO Club Highlights

It brings great joy to our MISPO team when our student leaders get recognized for their hard work and dedication to their organizations during the year. This year, HINT(Hofstra International) was the proud recipient of the Cultural Club of The Year award. As the primary international student club on campus, HINT puts together programs that bring cultures from all around the world to Hofstra. Through several of their events, students get to journey around the world without ever leaving the campus. These intercultural experiences allow students to delve into various aspects of each other's cultures including food, clothing and other forms of artistic expression. The Exhibit of Nations was one such event held this year that gave students the opportunity to experience the cultures of several of our students on campus including St. Lucia, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Sri Lanka, China and Japan to name a few.

Take a trip to Sri Lanka!
HINT is an energetic  group of students who are passionate about diversity and adding to the cultural and international vibrance of the Hofstra campus. We are truly fortunate to have such a great group on campus. Congratulations to HINT for their well deserved Cultural Club of The Year award!

Athraja de Silva, President of HINT

Monday, May 26, 2014

The Foundations of Memorial Day

It’s that time of year again: the spring semester has come to a close, the graduation festivities are winding down, and Memorial Day is right around the corner. Many view Memorial Day as a day out of the office and into the backyard with family and friends for an old fashioned barbecue. We enjoy the long weekend, the promise of good weather, and the endless stream of commercials for mattress sales. People tend to see it as the unofficial start of summer and not what it truly is.

Originally known as Decoration Day, Memorial Day was created as a day to remember the fallen soldiers of the American Civil War. Families decorated the graves of the soldiers with flags and flowers. In the early 1900s, the holiday was extended to remember all of the soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice. The holiday was originally celebrated every year on May 30 but was later changed to the fourth Monday in May to create a three-day weekend. Since the beginning of the American Civil War roughly 1.3 million soldiers have died in active combat. So while you are grilling burgers and hot dogs, take a moment to remember one of these soldiers that gave his or her life for their country.

World War II Memorial, Washington D.C.
In Flanders Fields, by John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
      Between the crosses, row on row,
   That mark our place; and in the sky
   The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
   Loved and were loved, and now we lie
         In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
   The torch; be yours to hold it high.
   If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
         In Flanders fields.

Guest Blogger: Rob Canobbio
Second Year Graduate Student, Secondary Social Studies Education


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Exhibit of Nations hosted by the Hofstra International Student Club

On April 16, 2014 H*INT (Hofstra International Student Club) hosted the Exhibit of Nations.  An event filled with displays featuring different countries that represent our university, multicultural performances and a great salsa lesson.

 Students were invited to showcase aspects of the culture from  the various countries we have on campus.  The countries represented that night were: Sri Lanka, China, Japan, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Brazil, Germany, Philippines, Saint Lucia Guatemala, Turkey, Bolivia, and Ghana.

A fashion show which showcased various types of fashion from different countries opened the performance section of the night.  From Bollywood dancers, to amazing singing performances by our students, the Exhibit of Nations was a great multicultural experience.  The evening concluded with Salsa Lessons by Mark James and Karen Lupo.

The event was a success thanks to the amazing collaborations with Entertainment Unlimited, Student Government Association, Luke Miedreich from Events Management, Director Jennifer Christ from MISPO, and Professor Kari Jensen who were judges at each booth.

China and Sri Lanka both came in Third place, Peru with second place and the winning table was Trinidad and Tobago.  Additionally, Japan won best dressed.  An entertaining and interactive event, the Exhibit of Nations is brought back to campus with great success!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Green Move Out

Students, we know you’re finishing finals and are beginning to move out of your rooms. But before you discard unwanted items, you should consider donating them. Find out how you can do your part by using the guide below. 

Big Brothers Big Sisters Bin Locations:  
Towers, behind Constitution
Nassau/Suffolk Halls
Colonial Square
Student Center Bus Stop
Items that can be donated include clothing, shoes, accessories, linens, towels and throw rugs in good condition.

Island Harvest Bins: 
Non-perishable food can be deposited in bins in the dorms.

Books can be brought to Barnes and Noble for possible buy back or donation.   
The Physician Assistant Studies program is also sponsoring a book drive for donated textbooks; books can be dropped in room 113 or in bins on the second floor in Monroe Lecture Hall between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Do you need a Visa to travel to France?

My Schengen Tourist Visa Story...

I am an international student studying at the School of Communications. I am getting an MFA in Documentary Studies & Production. I'm from China and I wanted to visit my friend in France for the winter break in December.   


I need a Schengen Tourist Visa to visit France because I am a Chinese citizen. I filled out the Schengen Tourist Visa application with the help of my international student advisor, Sonia Fernandes, at MISPO. I needed to schedule an appointment online to apply for the visa at the French Consulate in NYC. The next available appointment was in January 2014 but my flight to France leaves December 27, 2013!  

I did not give up! I went back to my dorm room and pressed F5 to reload the appointment page again and again until Voila an appointment appeared for December 19! I scheduled it immediately I was afraid it would disappear from my computer screen. 

On December 19, I went to the French Consulate in NYC but they denied my visa because I was missing all of my hotel reservations. I felt really depressed but I was not giving up! So I went to MISPO and met with Sonia again to review my application and all of my documents.  

Afterwards, I returned to my dorm room to schedule another appointment with the French Consulate. Once again, I had to press F5 to reload the appointment page again and again. Luckily, an appointment appeared for December 23. 

On December 23, I went to the French Consulate in NYC and they approved my visa! Finally!!! I flew to France on December 27. 

I really enjoyed visiting Europe. It was  a wonderful vacation and it was worth all of the hard work and frustration to get that Schengen Visa!

Here are my pictures....

This is what I learned from my experience....

1. Apply for your visa as soon as possible

2. Don't give up even on the last day

3. Review your application and documents at least 2 times

Thank you again Sonia for helping me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


by Cherry Chaoran Wang

Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Office of Off-Campus Living & Commuting Student Services' fifth annual Pet Parade

Hofstra off-campus and commuting students showed their pet PRIDE this weekend at the Office of Off-Campus Living & Commuting Student Services's fifth annual Pet Parade. People on their way to the Dutch Festival stuck around to see how Hofstra pets could strut their stuff! This year's pet parade featured five dogs and one cat. Off-campus students and commuting students alike registered their furry friends to show off their best tricks. All participants recieved gift bags filled with delicious goodies and toys for the pets to enjoy!

The two best in show were: 

Timber, the amazing Belgian Tervuren, who showed off how well he listened to his owner Caprianna, a first year commuting student, when he gave her a hug! 

Casey, the fantastic Rhodesian Ridgeback/Beagle Mix showed how well trained he was when he listened to owner Nick, a second year commuting student, when he stayed put! 

The honorable mentions were: 

The beautiful black lab Boston, won sweetest pet when he gave the judges his big brown puppy-eyes!
The adorable Shepherd/ Husky/ Lab Rocky sat pretty for the judges, and showed off how well he sat.
The stunning Siberian Husky Sasha mesmerized the judges with his deep blue eyes and lovely flowing coat. 

The only feline entered was Mystee, a gorgeous 8-month-old Domestic Gray-haired Rag doll cat  whose favorite toy is a super spiny ball extreme 3000 and was led on a pink leash.

The Office of Off-Campus Living & Commuting Student Services was thrilled to host this event, and hopes to see these furry friends again next year at the sixth annual Pet Parade! 

Cristina Pappadake-Gomez
Graduate Assisant
Office of Off-Campus Living & Commuting Student Services

Friday, May 2, 2014

A Time to Celebrate!

It is May! A time for final projects, presentations and those final exams!

For those graduating, it is also a time to say good-bye. A time to relish the special moments created at Hofstra.  A time to take photos of places and faces desired to remember.

Yesterday, we at MISPO had a small celebration for our student leaders of our multicultural clubs that will be graduating this May. We thought it would be best to go ahead and meet and celebrate with them now before things get really busy during the final weeks of this semester.

We have 12 graduating seniors involved in our multicultural clubs. It was fun being able to reminisce about their time here at Hofstra, all that they have accomplished through their efforts as leaders on campus, and also reflect about the journeys that await them. Some students are continuing on to graduate school, some have gotten internships, some landed their dream job, and some are still trying to figure out their next journey. One thing is for sure: We know that they will all do amazing and profound things in the future, as they have greatly impacted Hofstra University’s campus positively during their time here!

We wish all graduating students all the best with their next steps toward their career!