Sunday, April 10, 2016

Background Music

Racing season is finally upon us! And of course, behind the complete glamor and excitement of racing in freezing rain are the 4+ hour bus rides from Marist to our various destinations up and down the East Coast. This serves as the perfect excuse to push my Women in Asia essays aside and create some great new Spotify playlists to get me through. Here's what I've been listening to recently, kind of my "one size fits all" that serves as background music for everything from bus-rides to runs to quick roller blading excursions. 

(PS: New Lumineers album dropped last week. Can't. Stop. Listening.) 

Monday, April 4, 2016

Marist Bucket List

A loud, dated countdown calendar greets me every morning when I walk into the School of Business, making it almost impossible to avoid my looming graduation. Today the bright red numbers blinked 49, on-and-off, on-and-off as though the clock, too needed a large cup of overpriced coffee. When I saw that "49" today it was as if the space-time continuum had been broken and I nearly spat out my drink. It feels as though we got back from spring break and someone hit the fast forward button! Out of control. So with this, I took a quick break from my daytime activity as a serial job-applier and put together a small bucket list of lingering objectives to check off in my last 1176 hours at Marist (but who's counting). We'll see if I can accomplish these before I graduate! 

Friday, March 11, 2016

Senior Scaries

Flashback two months ago and you'd find a very senioritis-ridden Erica Bogdan. Zoom in on present day and you'll find a somewhat unstable Erica Bogdan; half plagued by senioritis, half crippled by the senior scaries. As much as senioritis has set in (and trust me, it has) there are things that I catch myself thinking about that no longer apply to me. As an RA, I think about how I'll do this differently next year, or do that bulletin board even better. As a coxswain I think about how I can't wait to see the freshman kill it next year as sophomores. And then I realize next year I'll be in a completely different place. It's a rude awakening, realizing that routines of four years will be completely dismantled and habits will be wildly redistributed. For the first time in my life, the future is actually very uncertain (not fun). Graduating high school didn't have the "scary" factor because college was a given, it was the logical next step. 71 days from now, there's no "next step". Some of my best friends have job offers, others are heading to Thailand for three months, others are grad-school bound... and I'm over here existentially confused on a daily basis. This self-reflective trance has led me to stop taking the little things for granted. I start counting "lasts", like last-first spring practice, and last-duty-night with some of my favorite staff members. I feel on the cusp of a big transition as I cherish the most minute details of my Marist world. I've come to realize that I'll really miss my starry eyed freshmen (pains in my ass that they are) and how much I actually love the sunrise on the river. The scary factor is here and it's now and it's something I'm really grappling with. I'm lucky I have the support system that I do to reassure me that whatever happens happens, and wherever I'm headed it's going to be somewhere really exciting. So bring it on, senior scaries. 

Monday, March 7, 2016

Solo Mission

Sunday afternoon I found myself in a very rare position... alone. At school I am constantly surrounded by people; my teammates, my residents, my staff members, my friends... and I really wouldn't have it any other way. But for a few unusual hours everyone was running in different directions and I had some time to do me. It was amazing, and much needed after a suicide weekend of being on RA duty in the freshmen dorm (you see, staying up until 3am babysitting vomiting 18 year olds isn't as glamorous as it sounds). So after a nice sleep in (also rare) I took myself on a hike in Beacon which is just a short drive from Marist.

It was so refreshing to get outside and do something for myself, I didn't realize how much junk I had swirling around in my head that I just needed to clear out. It was great to indulge in a few hours of thinking thoughts I don't really have for otherwise, and don't want to think about when I'm surrounded by all of my people  (due to their emotionally unstabilizing nature). You know, graduation, the Job Hunt, how much I really am going to miss Marist... all that good stuff. It's healthy to get some of that stuff out on your own. And it's good to realize that alone time is healthy. I am so rarely alone that it almost makes me uncomfortable, but this Sunday was exactly what the doctor ordered.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Favorite Podcasts

I got really into podcasts this summer when I barely did any driving and spent a lot of time on the train or on foot. After a few weeks my music got really boring, and after remembering how addicted to Serial I was when I was abroad, I thought I'd expand my horizons. I sort of fell of the bandwagon with my listening in the fall, but now that I'm done with capping (!!!) I have a lot more time on my hands! I'm in a few classes right now that are forcing me to think out of the box a little, and pay close attention to current events, and I've found that podcasts are a great way to get some of those juices flowing. Here are my top picks...

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn 

I love the way Jesse Thorn organizes his interviews. He gets to talk to a lot of really random (but interesting) people and he asks them questions that go below surface level. This one's a little bit longer, so it was perfect when I was commuting this summer. One of my favorite interviews was with Jason Schwartzman! 

Planet Money 

I am not a finance person. Not even a little. This podcast makes current finance issues really approachable, though and make me feel like I can actually get my head around certain things. The most recent one I listened to discussed the plausibility of the presidential candidate's economic suggestions. Really good stuff. 

Modern Love

This podcast includes short essays from the NY Time's column read by celebrities. It's short and light and really good for listening to when you need a study break or need to get some cleaning/organization done. 

Freakonomics Radio 

I started listening to this over the summer when Aziz Ansari tweeted that he was featured in one of the episodes and fell in love with it instantly. The hosts are super funny and dive into all sorts of things I'd never even think of, but love listening to. 

Monday, February 15, 2016

Gone with the Wind

As one of the slowest readers on the planet, I'm amazed to say I finally finished Gone with the Wind. I picked it up this summer as commute reading, but before long I became completely attached to the characters and plot. I'd seen the movie in high school, but remembered very little beyond the beauty of Clark Gable as Rhett Butler... which ended up serving me well. The plot is so dense that uncovering it all page by page was so satisfying (albeit emotional).

The best part about the whole reading experience was the coincidental timing, though. My year has had very strong feminist undertones that allowed the happenings of the book to really resonate with me. I am lucky that I can't relate to Scarlett's experiences on a personal level, but her perseverance and ability to destroy social norms left me so energized. Between my internship (which was super male-dominated) to classes with totally kick-ass professors, and of course this book, I have learned a lot about what it means to work around expectations and surprise people. Gone with the Wind was a phenomenal read that I'm sure I'll be revisiting within the next few years.

Monday, December 7, 2015


I'm in the process of wrapping up my senior "capping" class, what I assume to be similar to hell a senior thesis at other schools. I was thrown into it with a team I'd never worked with before, assigned a topic seemingly irrelevant to me, and pushed to create a very calculated strategic recommendation. After many late nights, an unhealthy amount of caffeine, one minor mental breakdown, and one (much needed) late night Dominoes order, I cannot believe the progress we've made. As we wrap up and get ready to present our work this week, it is with shocking satisfaction that I reflect on it all.

This whirlwind of a semester has kicked my ass in more ways than I can count, but I have never felt so proud of the work I've done. I've learned so much about my strengths and weaknesses and how a team dynamic really, truly works. For truly the first time in my academic career I feel as though I've been challenged to critically think and put out meaningful, hard work. As I look towards graduation in May I'm happy to say that everything is really starting to "click". I see my curriculum taking shape and I have a new appreciation for the way my college career has been structured. I am so thankful for what Marist has given me and I am so thrilled to think of what's ahead.