Life in Holland as told from my #Instagram

THE BEACHES

Whether it’s Big Ol’ Red (aka Holland State Park), Tunnel Beach, Laketown Dunes, The Bowl, or some random beach front you found on a drive, everyone has their favorite beach and it’s a must no matter what time of year. Even in the depths of winter, my friends and I will bundle up in coats and blankets, trek out to some Lake Michigan beachfront, and watch the stars for probably longer than we should.

RILEY TRAILS

Riley Trails is cherished around these parts for class field trips, long walks with your ~campus crush~, a place to escape the rush of school, or (my personal fave) an impromptu photo shoot with a couple friends. On a warm, sunny day, there’s really nothing that can beat a good jog up, down, and all around Riley Trails.

THE ENDLESS COFFEE SHOPS

Some will say Lemonjellos. Other’s (ME) will say JPs. And still, others will say 205. No matter what your style, vibe, or latte of choice, Holland has got a spot for you. Yes, we may be a town known for churches on every corner. But, this popularity is closely rivaled by our coffee shops on every other corner. Also, pro tip, if you don’t know what to order, try my go-to: an almond milk latte with vanilla, it tastes like how a good book would taste… if you can imagine that.

OUR VERY OWN PINE GROVE

The Pine Grove is truly the most beloved place on campus. One, I mean come on just look at it, how could you not love this place? But two, this is the heart of campus. On a warm day, the Pine Grove is littered with hammocks, slacklines, picnic blankets, spike-ball courts, and of course, frisbees. The PG is perfect for actually doing homework, pretending to do homework, and just general merriment.

TULIP TIME

You might say, “but Ariana, what IS Tulip Time“. What is Tulip Time? WHAT IS TULIP TIME?! Only the best time of the year, of course! Right around final exams and graduation a carnival appears in our very own streets to supply Hope students with the proper caloric energy they need to end the year: elephant ears, corn dogs, frozen lemonade, and literally deep-fried-anything-you-can-imagine. Ahhh, the glow of food trucks, the click-clack of wooden clogs on concrete, the omnipresent smell of tulips, there’s nothing else like it.

HONESTLY… JUST WHEREVER MY PEOPLE ARE

Hang out around these parts enough and you’ll start to heart it a lot: “What makes Hope special is the community.” BUT IT’S SO TRUE! My favorite place in all of Holland is just wherever my friends happen to be at that moment. If it’s homework at the Bultman Student Center, hitting that free weight room in the Dow, or simply snuggled into our beds, being with my people is being home.

Featured Photographers: Addie Vanderzwaag, Riley Schmitz, Mackenzie Mitchell, Sydney Enloe, Eddie Ip

Featured Models: Riley Schmitz, Jubilee Jackson, Hailey Houck, Sydney Enloe, Anna Stafford,

From Windy City to Tulip City

By: Eddie Cervantes

Growing up in Chicago, there was always something to do whether it was in my neighborhood, downtown, or even in a neighborhood on the other side of the city.  Transportation was never an issue, it allowed us to get from one side of the city to the other without ever switching a bus or train.

However, there are some cons of living in the city.  The worst thing about Chicago is the traffic.  It seems that when there is traffic everyone forgets how to drive and their hands are stuck to their horn.  People are always on guard and a simple look could be taken the wrong way.  It’s great to live somewhere where there is always something going on, but for young adults there is also a curfew which can limit your options or ability to get somewhere in order to get home in time. 

When I was choosing a college, I wanted to attend a place that was far enough from a city that I would get a smaller and more connected community, though also able to travel somewhere when I missed the “big city life.”  Holland, Michigan became the perfect location that had the balance I was looking for.

Holland, MI is a small town compared to Chicago.  Yet, it doesn’t feel like a small town with all the activity and events happening all the time. In Chicago, there is nothing that beats a bike ride to Lake Michigan in the morning and seeing the sunrise.  Since Holland is across Lake Michigan, I can’t experience the same sunrise, but riding to the lake for breath-taking sunsets gives me the exact feeling.

Hope’s campus is a block away from Downtown Holland, so when there isn’t as much happening on campus, there is always something to do downtown.  The variety of coffee shops, restaurants, and local shops make it a great (but financially dangerous) way to spend your day. If you want to get a little further off campus than downtown, Holland also has a farmers market, movie theatres, bowling alleys, hiking trails – and so much more to explore.

Hope is also in a great location that if you are missing a bit of the big city life, you have three awesome places you can go and make it a day trip.  Chicago and Detroit are only about a two & a half hours away which allows anyone to be able to enjoy a day in the city and be back for a late night doughnut run. Grand Rapids is only about 40 minutes away and though smaller than Detroit & Chicago, a place that still has plenty to do.  Grand Rapids is a booming city full of young adults, which most events targeted for people our age! Whether it is ArtPrize, ice skating in Rosa Parks Circle, sporting events, going to a concert or other potential events in Grand Rapids – there is always something new and exciting happening there.

Though there are definite aspects of Chicago life that I miss, I’ve found in my two years at Hope there are still so many events & things to do on and around campus. It’s rarely of a question of “What am I going to do with my weekend?” rather, “How am I going to fit everything I want to do into my weekend?”

 

 

3 Things I Wish I Knew Going into Freshman Year

By: Tucker Marty

It is hard to believe that I, Tucker Marty, was once an 18 year old freshman who knew not a soul at Hope College. What’s even crazier is that, now a junior, I am over halfway done with my time here. Wow. Thinking back on my first two years here I feel all types of emotions. I have learned a lot. I have felt loved. I have felt at home.

Somehow, I think I am starting to figure the whole college thing out. Well, that’s probably not true because junior year is kicking my butt right now. But, I’m making progress. And I’ve learned a few things along the way. Had I known what I now know, going into freshman year would’ve been a whole lot smoother of a transition. So, I figured I’d share a few of these things with you all.

Procrastination

Yup, you bet I procrastinated as a freshman. Well, what the heck. I still procrastinate as a junior! BUT, I have learned a major key in how to conquer it (yes, I am still working at this)! Here it is: Be okay with moving on. Do not let the thing you are stuck on, keep you in the rut! I cannot tell you the amount of times I have been writing a paper, and I just stare at my cursor at the top of the page for what feels like forever, trying to come up with some clever way to start. Now, I know to move on. I tell myself to start some other place. Being okay with moving on doesn’t just have to apply to papers and homework though. I think too often we can so easily get caught up in little decisions that we make feel HUGE, and we become frozen because we don’t know what to do. I have learned here at Hope that it is simply best to choose a direction, and keep moving. It will reduce your blood pressure.

Time is Valuable

There are two typical responses for a Hope student to the question, “How’ve you been?” The first, is “Good,” and the second is, “Busy.” Hope students are always busy. Not that being busy is bad, I actually enjoy being busy. But an important lesson to learn is that you need to fill your time with things that are important to you. Otherwise, you will get overwhelmed quickly. Coming to Hope, you will be encouraged to get involved in this, get involved in that! “You’re not living the life of a Hope student if your day is not jam packed.” This statement is false. Besides learning to fill my time with what is important to me, I have gotten a whole lot better at saying no. Saying no is good! When you say no to one club, one extracurricular, one opportunity to lead this Bible study, you are gaining time to actually do what is important to you. Time is valuable, people! Learn what is important. Say no.

Having Fun is a MUST!

“College will be the best four years of your life.” This won’t be true, unless you decide to make it true! While learning new things, studying, and looking towards your “someday” is great and all, I’ve learned that sometimes you need to start focusing a little more on your “today.” Hope College is so great because it is a place where we have been given the resources, the support, and the incredible opportunity to dream about our “someday.” But it can be easy to start doing a whole lotta dreamin, and a just a little livin. Live for the now. Ride your bike to the pier with a friend. Make it a tradition to get Applebee’s “half off apps” every other weekend at midnight. Start a spikeball tournament in the Pine Grove. Polar bear plunge into Lake Michigan in November. Start a prank war with the guys (or girls) living across from you. Take a random road trip up north. Get the “pirate’s booty” from Captain Sundae. Stay up all night with your friends because you can! Make Hope College the best four years of your life, and I promise you it will. We’ve got a whole lotta tomorrow to worry about. Today, live for the now.

THE ‘KERK!

By: Arianna Bratt

“And the winner of the 2017 Nykerk Cup Competition is…”

Those words will inevitably ring through DeVos Field House in just three short weeks, the night of October 28th to be exact. But, the words that will follow this red-underlined-incomplete-sentence are yet to be fought, rehearsed, sang, played, spoke, and deliberated over. The ultimate question remains: WHO WILL REIGN NYKERK CUP CHAMP? Even? Or Odd? And perhaps the even more interesting question: Where do your alliances lie?

Nykerk is a cutthroat (okay, not really, more like very loving and cuddly #NykerkLove) tradition at Hope College in which the freshman, coached by the juniors, and the sophomores, coached by the seniors, clash to create the most epic battleground ever laid for all things song, play, and oration. Let’s break it down and introduce our Nykerk warriors. *cue the drumroll*

The Orator: One oration wizard is chosen from each side to craft a heart-piercing verbal and physical articulation of the theme. Given a different prompt every year, the wisdom spewed from our orators are guaranteed to leave you a tingling combination of elated and teary-eyed.

The Play: 15 Odd Year and 10 Even Year play girls are destined to take the stage in original and hilarious plays riddled with Hope jokes, crazy makeup, intricate traditions, and outrageous plots. This is unlike any other play you’ve seen (no, but really…think crazy and then even crazier). Play will leave you in shock, awe, admiration, albeit slightly confused, but wanting to see it all over again.

The Song: Our song girls come with strong belting voices and in masses. Dazzling harmonies are met with captivating hand motions and prop use. Their impeccable timing pulls you into a never-before-experienced world of popular music and old classics. Get ready to incessantly and uncontrollably dance in your seat.

The Morale: Our ever-vital morale men are the stoke to the Nykerk flame. They cheer our girls on with daily skits and constant hilarity. On the night of Nykerk you will see them running around gladly bearing their servant’s heart, empowering all things ‘Kerk to ensue. (We love you, moral boys, oh yes we do)

As Even and Odd bring their best, the judges and the audience have the impossible task of choosing a winner year after year. So, where do your alliances lie? As a former Odd Year playgirl, I’m sure you can only imagine my preferences. My freshman year, I played the part of Puller (pictured below) a tribute to Nykerk’s counterpart – the Pull. And then my sophomore year, I played Train a clunky but loveable take on the trains that make Hope students constantly late to class. I have truly made some of my best friends during Play, in fact, 5 of us are living together our Senior Year! Yes, we are anticipating to never sleep #PlaySoHard

Alas, I am not here to sway you. Rather, choose for yourself and go root on your precious Nykerk girls with all the energy and love your heart can muster. October 28th at DeVos Field House, don’t miss it!

The Phelps Scholars Program

By Monica Teuthorn

Before I started my freshman year, college seemed like a foreign place. I didn’t have a ton of experience with it as I was one of the first in my family to really go away to a college like Hope. I had no idea what to expect. College seemed intimidating thinking about academics, research, internships, and more. I was moving to a new state to live with people I didn’t know, compounded the anxiety I already had about the academics and starting over, but thankfully I found the Phelps Scholars Program.

The Phelps Scholars Program is a living-learning community for incoming freshman. Now, I know what you’re asking yourself, and no it is not a scholarship nor is it an honors program. It is for anyone! The program focuses on diversity, inclusion, and cultural awareness. Everyone in the program takes the same First Year Seminar course and everyone does some volunteering for the first semester. One of the coolest parts is that you get to go to fun trips on some weekends for free with the group. Each trip also comes with a different ethnic cuisine that is also free! The food is a huge bonus! One of my favorite trips was to a Powwow in Grand Rapids. It was the very first trip we had for the year. We got to go to their social gathering and experience everything from the food to the ceremony to the music. That was one of my favorite trips, because apart from being the first one of the year, it was very interactive. Not only did we get to observe how that tribe practiced, but they also allowed us at times to join the circle in a respectful way. I saw many students experiencing this culture for the first time with all different reactions, but all giving me a greater respect for my own Native American heritage. This trip ignited my passion for learning and experiencing other cultures, but that was just the beginning. There were so many more trips that taught me so much about myself and the world around me. More than just learning and experiencing these different cultures, this program offers a community for freshmen.

Sure the class is interesting, I love volunteering, and the trips are super fun, but honestly the best part of the program is the community it builds and the people in it. Think about it. This community tends to create such great bonds because you spend so much time with the people involved. You even live with them!  The best part is that this program intentionally brings different people together. Everyone comes from different places or backgrounds. This tends to happen in college anyway, but this program is intentional about it. Of course, with these differences comes some conflict or disagreements, but this program teaches you to disagree in a respectful way and learn out of those conversations. It is good to expose yourself to different people and cultures, because after college, wherever you end up, you will be surrounded by all different kinds of people who you will have to work with. This is preparing you to live and thrive in a global society. The other great thing is that you gain friends from all over the world. This program has given me some of my best friends, and I know these are relationships that will last a lifetime!

Find Your Home

By Rourke Mullins, Hope College Senior

Here it is, you’re 18 years old and the moment has come when you are asked (a lot) to answer one of the most important questions of your young life so far: “Where are you going to college?”

It can be daunting question. For me, it created a pit in my stomach. I didn’t know how to navigate my way through this new feeling and the endless amounts of college mail my mom would throw on my desk. I know I am not alone in this. You may be feeling this way too. So, the question really is: How do we answer a question that carries more weight than most of us have ever dealt with before?

Well, to be honest, I actually swung and missed at my first try on this one. I had decided to attend another university for all of the wrong reasons. I choose it because, in reality, it was a cop-out. It was a choice that had the lowest amount of risk and a choice that revolved around things that did not matter. I quickly realized this and had to force myself back to square one and ask again, “Where am I going to college?” This time, the once impossible and scary question now seemed so clear. I am going to go home, I decided. But not back where I grew up home but to a place where I feel at home. When I thought in this way, that’s the moment when my college decision changed for me.

First, I made a list of all the reasons why I loved home. Some of them were comfort, peace, and the feeling of being wanted. I took on my new college search with clear eyes and a heart that was looking for this new home that I was so hungry for. By the grace of God, I was led to this small liberal arts college in West Michigan called Hope. It is a place where you walk down the street and are able to say hi to your friends, or complete strangers; a place where you can get incredible coffee and have conversations that will change your life forever; and, a place that holds you close during dark times and celebrates good times. It’s a place that I now call home. A place where I feel comfort, peace, and the feeling of being wanted.

Here I am 3 years later looking  back on my experience and what a journey it has been. So if you are in the place that I was in, scared by the thought of where you will attend college, I encourage you to change your perspective. Allow yourself to look at colleges not as a place you will be leaving your home to go to, but as a place where your next home will be. For me, I have found a home in Hope.

Are you asking these 6 questions on your college tours?

By Kristin Diekevers ’07, Associate Director of Admissions

Ahhhh, the changing of the seasons. We are about two weeks shy of the official start of fall (it’s September 22 if you were wondering), and colleges are back in session. That means many of you are doing yourself the awesome favor of scheduling college visits — seriously, there is nothing you can do to get to know a college better than by visiting.

Colleges are ready with their welcome mats and most tour guides are ready for the typical questions (and if they aren’t, be skeptical). How many students go here? What’s the average class size? Are freshmen allowed to have cars? How are roommates determined? What do students do on the weekends?

Four students walking on sidewalk under trees.

But you want to be a savvy consumer, right? Dig a little deeper into the college experience and consider asking these 6 questions on every college tour.

  1. What aren’t you showing me? There might be good reasons for limiting what you see — time length of tour, spaces reserved for faculty/staff, building hours, etc. However, it’s worth asking because you might also uncover areas of deferred maintenance or areas of concern for the college. In either case, you might consider circling back to these areas by yourself before you leave the campus.
  2. Take time to smell the flowers. Yes, this is a statement, not a question, but it’s important. Pay attention to your surroundings at all times. How are students interacting with one another? With faculty or staff? With you? What is on the bulletin boards and what signs are hanging up on campus? Are there literally flowers you can smell (hey, there is something to be said for well-kept grounds)?
  3. What faculty or staff member helped you the most your freshman year? How so? People matter. Connections matter. Connected people are generally happier and more successful both in college and in the long-term. Asking this question will help you learn if students make an early and lasting connection with an employee of the college.
  4. How is conflict recognized and addressed on campus? Given our current political climate, I think this is a fair question. College is an important time for young people to further develop conflict resolution skills. We hope they have good examples of people doing this on their college campus at all levels. Is there dialogue or dogmatism? Are there forums or fear?
  5. What was your favorite lecture, arts performance, guest speaker or chapel message this past year? “Bueller?…Bueller?…Bueller?” (If you have not watched Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, please do so the minute you are done reading this blog. You’re welcome.) Lots of students can listen and comprehend, but are they being inspired? A lasting impression made by a lecture fuels a student’s learning, development and success as a human being.
  6. What would you miss the most if you graduated tomorrow? Why? Make sure you add: “You can’t just say your friends.” This all goes back to how connected to their eventual alma mater they feel. Do they swell with pride in talking about their school and show enthusiasm? Do you get those feels when they share their experience? It’s a good signal you’re making a connection too.

I’ve said to ask these questions on every college tour, but really, these questions could be repeated over and over to any person — faculty, student, staff, administrator, coach — you meet on campus. Your tour guide will have one experience, but if you’re really interested in the college, talk to everyone you meet!

Ready to ask these questions within the Hope community? We’re ready to welcome you!

Need Me This Summer? I’ll Be in the Lab

Meet Anna Lunderberg. Don’t let the relaxed pose in the hammock fool you. This summer, Anna is hard at work on campus, doing things like studying the brain tissue of rats and running Western blots. (Yeah, I had to Google that, too.)

Anna, a soon-to-be sophomore at Hope, is collaborating with biology and chemistry professor Dr. Leah Chase on neuroscience research through the summer. For Anna, who is still uncertain about her major, this is a great opportunity to explore possibilities.

Anna came to Hope last year thinking she would be a physics major. During the summer of 2016, before her freshman year had even started(!), she participated in lab-based research at Hope with physics professor Dr. Jennifer Hampton. During the fall semester, Anna continued her physics research and participated in Hope’s Phage Discovery program. Students in this program do microbiological and molecular research to isolate, identify and investigate phages (viruses that infect bacteria.) They then share their discoveries in public databases used by researchers worldwide.

So, by the end of her first year, the Phage program had made Anna a bona fide researcher. What’s more, the program drew her into the biochemistry lab, where she discovered interests beyond physics.

Today in the lab, Anna is conducting research that will benefit mental health treatment. She studies rats that have been exposed to a derivative of homocysteine, a chemical found in higher concentration in the blood of individuals with neuropsychiatric disorders. She then determines if these rats respond better to lithium, a common treatment for bipolar disorder, or ketamine, a common treatment for depression. Using Western blots, Anna also studies how the proteins in the rats’ brains changed. The goal is to better understand the neurochemical changes associated with neuropsychiatric disorders.

“Even though things don’t always work the first time, it’s such an amazing feeling when things go right or everything falls together,” says Anna. “Procedures don’t always go well, but this is a universal part of science, and there is such a supportive environment here since everyone is going through the same thing.”

On any given day, Anna’s work is varied and well-supported, thanks to the active summer research community at Hope. She may be running tests in the lab, examining published research in her area, presenting her own findings to faculty and students or participating in weekly seminars. And, with programs like Chemistry Club’s Tuesday night beach picnics, she’s having fun with others her share her interests.

At Hope, you’ll hear a lot about collaborative student-faculty research. You’ll also hear about opportunities to participate in graduate-school-style research. Anna Lunderberg is making the most of both of these, and in the process making Hope a better and more interesting place.

What to Expect for First Year Advising

Freshman advising is an incredibly laid back experience. The process depends on whether you declare a major your first year.

Not sure on your major yet?

If you don’t declare a major your first year, your advisor won’t change. Your First Year Seminar professor will be your advisor until you declare your major. There’s no need to worry if you don’t know what you’re going to major in, most programs can still be completed in four years if you declare your sophomore (and in some cases, junior) year. Before classes even begin (during Orientation week), you are required to meet with your advisor to go over the classes you’re enrolled in. Then, at the end of your first semester (and all semesters to follow), you are required to again meet with your professor and go through the classes you’re planning on taking for the following semester.

Declare a major

You can request a professor from the department for your major directly on the major declaration sheet, or you may be assigned an advising professor. You should meet with your new advisor, especially if you’ve never met them before, just so the two of you can get to know each other outside of the constraints of a classroom. From there, your advisor can give you specific, thoughtful advice regarding your major, and the classes they believe would be best for you.

Your advisor is the person who can help you with just about anything and everything. They’re there for you and they want to help you, and watch you succeed. They can help you figure out what classes would be best for you and help you find internships and summer jobs. They can be excellent references on resumes, and a great source of guidance.

Your responsibilities are to take initiative in scheduling appointments and having a valid reason to meet with your advisor. Whatever you schedule an appointment for, you should be prepared for the meeting. For example, when you have your semestral meeting with your advisor regarding classes to take, you should have the classes you’re planning on taking already in mind to share with them.

Exploring majors

Hope’s liberal arts emphasis allows you to explore multiple possible majors, while still working towards graduation. This means that you’re free to take courses ranging from the arts to math, and still receive helpful credits along the way. Hope also offers a career development center where you can take tests that show you which field you would be best in. Your advisor is another great source of advice when exploring majors and planning for your future. 

Chilean Movie Night

This Wednesday (March 15), I and Amie Hixon will organizing a Chilean movie night on the behalf of International Student Office in order to promote studying abroad. We both studied abroad in Chile this past fall semester. I was in Business and Culture program and Amie was in Liberal Arts Program. We will have a brochures about all the possible options if you are interested in studying abroad in Chile.

The movie, we will be playing will be is called Machuca (2004) and it is about two boys who observe a political coupe in their native country Chile. The only reason we picked it because it has the highest ranking on IMDb of 7.8. It got 12 awards wins and 5 nominations. I and Amie have not seen it yet, so it will be for the first time as well. So come to watch and explore about studying in Chile!

@DePree Cook Auditorium  at 7:00 pm

Cover of Machuca movie.
Cover of Machuca movie.