Yin He '10

Hey there!  Welcome to my blog! 

 

Yin He

Below will be where you will be joining me as we both navigate through this upcoming academic school year.  Who is this great individual that admissions has so kindly asked to represent their beloved school, you may ask?  Well, as you may already know my name is Yin (I mean, you clicked here).  I'm from a small private highschool in Brooklyn, NY (despite the fact that I tend to say y'all a lot).  I'm a Biology and Art History double major (yes I get that look all the time) which just means that I'm taking full advantage of our liberal arts education.  I'm currently a senior here at the Purple and White.  Despite how much I relish the fact that I am a senior, I am also holding onto each passing day with a death grip.  Sooner or later, instead of days sitting on the Adirondack chairs outside, Valentine outdoor cookouts, sledding down Memorial Hill and participating in whatever event the Campus Center happens to be holding that day, it will be rent, cooking for myself, jobs, and bills galore. 

But before I go, I can share some of my experience with you lovely readers and hopefully get you as excited as I am about this school.  I am currently taking four very different classes: Animal Behavior in the Biology dept, Chinese I, Photography I, and Art and Architecture in Europe from 1400-1800.  Besides the four classes that I'm currently taking, I'm also an active member of Program Board, a club that brings monthly events onto campus such as comedians, hypnotists, speakers, etc.  We also throw the big Spring Concert in April, and this year I am a co-chair of organizing it.  I'm also a Mead Art Museum Docent which means I help out with events the Museum throws and give tours about certain works in the galleries.  I guess I would say I'm good at tours because I also tour for the admissions office.  Some of the other things that I have done while I've been here include participating on the Womens Lacrosse team for 2 years, studying abroad last fall in Copenhagen, Denmark (which was an amazing experience) and helping curate an art exhibit at the Mead. 

Who knows what this last year will bring?  Hopefully this blog will give you a sneak peek into an Amherst student's life and experiences in the Pioneer Valley. 

If you have any comments or questions please email me at yhe10@amherst.edu.  I do enjoy emails.  Excited to hear from y'all!

Yin's Blog Entries (listed chronologically, latest to earliest)


The End

Song of the Day: Forever Young-Jay Z

So ladies and gentlemen, this is the final chapter.  I am officially an alumnus (for about a week, in the hecticness of graduation I just haven't had time to add a chapter and this is closure for me).  Graduation was spectacular.  You see all the professors march in front of us with their colorful gowns and us in our caps and gowns.  Maryam was our speaker.  She's previously spoken at the Vagina monologues before as well as is known to be a fantastic writer.  Shes also from Pakistan so has just such a great accent.  Her speech as moving, thoughtful and hilarious, everything we need to send us on our way.  It was a surreal experience walking across the stage (though most of the time I was trying to make sure A) i didn't trip and b) my cap didn't fall off).  We all get canes with the Amherst College inscribed into them and our graduation year as a symbol of Amherst continuing to support us as we get old.  I think its a very deep metaphor but the sentimental person in me loves it.  I have yet to have a cane sword fight as Maryam asked us to but probably will at some point. 

This has been a great four years and for all those who are looking at Amherst or coming to Amherst, you will always treasure the time that you had at this institution. 

Until I come back for Homecoming, this is Yin He, Class of 2010, signing off.  Terras Irradient.

4/24-5/2

Song of the Day: OK GO-What to Do

I can't believe the semester is SO close to ending!  Its seems like its still so far away, I feel like I still need a few more years here, I can't believe I'm going to be a real person!  It seem like such a tangible thing, that I'll be graduating, until I took my senior yearbook photos on Wednesday and I put on the cap and gown.  Thats when it really hit me.

So this past week I took the liberty of not really doing much work, again a gift to myself for Spring Concert, and because of all that was happening.  On Monday Carrie had her last chamber ensemble concert so we went to that to support her and then we had our ACPB banquet at the sushi place in town to celebrate a great year of programming.  We have one last event left on Tuesday, "How to Get Fired", which will be a funny look at things people do that get them fired, so that we will know better once we graduate.  Tuesday my friend Mike's Thesis was having its gallery opening and I was going to go see OK GO in Northampton.  Jen and I went because its on Jen's bucket list to see a concert in NoHo, the 2nd largest booking venue next to Boston in Massachusetts and I just really enjoy OK GO.  Thursday the Biology department and the 3+4 committee threw together a barbeque for the majors to celebrate the end of theses.  All the seniors who did theses are presenting them this week so it should be interesting to see what people researched this past year.  Thursday was also Senior Ball, a semiformal that Margy and Tierney put together for just seniors to celebrate the coming of the end.  They brought back this band of alum that used to play all the time my freshman and sophomore year so it was pretty nostalgic and also very fun to dance to the classics! Saturday was another fun day because my friends who live off campus had a party where they roasted a whole pig! It was also ANOTHER senior acapella concert so busy busy day.  Today was Spring Carnival, rescheduled from last week because of rain.  There was a mechanical bull, slushies, fried dough, a bbq, a live band as well as slip and slides and an moonbounce obstacle course that TMarx (our Prez) participated in.  He actually also came to the Route 9 concert on Saturday.  Its great seeing him out at campus events, really gets students excited. 

Well, next week is the last week of class.  I say that with such a weight over my heart.  I'll try and hold it together for you folks.  I do also have another interview so that is a light at the end of the tunnel!

SPRING CONCERT

11:29pm (SUNDAY night)-OK.  So the live blog idea kind of REALLY failed.  I guess I ended up being a lot busier than I realized or expected.  Anyways let me recap everything that happened between yesterday at 2 pm and now.  So both artists, Jason Derulo and The Roots, were expected to arrive in the afternoon so we spend the afternoon prepping their dressing rooms.  Jen, who is the co-chair of ACPB, sent me home at 430 so I could take a nap (since I had been up since 6am).  When I got back all of student security arrived, all our student workers were arriving and it was an hour until we started letting people in.  There was already a line to get tickets.  We ended up selling out and despite the 6-8 portion of the night being relatively hectic with the artist arriving late the show did go on.  Jason Derulo and his two dancers were really good and showed up with these goggles with flashing lights and he had these gloves that had glowing lights on them as well.  He performed about 8-9 songs and then was nice enough to autograph the tee shirts of the security girls who were watching over his dressing room and other security members and for everybody who bought his CD at the merchandise table he signed them backstage.  The Roots then came on and they ROCKED.   So full of energy and looked like they were having so much fun.  They stayed a little afterward and signed tee shirts for Program Board.  Anyways we cleaned up their dressing rooms after the show ended and sent people home after a long days work.  Christina and I stayed afterward because as concert co chairs we needed to be there until the crew finished disassembling the stage and etc.  But we made friends with the crew and made them a part of Christina's video blog.  We got back to our rooms around 3am but today was a day to sleep in which was nice!

1:55pm:  Hah some live blog on my part apologies.  I've been running around neurotic trying to make sure everything is all set for The Roots dressing room, and for the crew and etc.  The stage is being made right now and we are waiting for the production crew of The Roots.  The day involves alot of running around getting food or ice, refreshing the coffee, and watching the dressing rooms making sure people don't wander into restricted space...Its a waiting game now but I think i'm going to take a break later at 3:00...

Heres a picture of the finished stage!

Spring Concert LeFrak

8am: whoo! So begins my live blog of today's exciting event, THE SPRING CONCERT1!!  I've been up for about 2 hours now, gotten some boxes of coffee and bagels for the crew.  right now it is really just a waiting game but the stage is now being built! I don't even feel tired and I came home at 1:30 last night from Spring Formal! I'm just running on adrenaline I supposed...anyways, i'll be blogging all throughout the day so chcek back with updates!!

4/11

Song of the Day: Fields of Gold-Sting

I just came back from an acapella concert where they sang a beautiful rendition of the song of the day.  It was the Zumbyes senior show (the all male acapella group) so it was again great to see all the seniors sing their songs for the last time. 

I'm picking up a self-imposed 20pg paper to be done by April 21st.  I hope I have enough motivation to do it.  Its for an award with the Art History department, only granted to seniors who submit a substantial paper about art.  Theses are automatically counted but since there is only 1 thesis writer in the department this year, I figure a cash prize won't hurt.  I know this may endeavor sound crazy but I'm interested in this sculptor, Donald Judd, and his minimalist sculptures as well as a minimalist painter, Robert Irwin. I also have a 5 page paper due at the end of this week for my Avant Garde class.  I also need to go home Thursday for a informational interview Friday morning, then drive back Friday afternoon.  Why can't there be a 30 hour day?

This past Thursday a contemporary artist, Olu Oguibe came to speak for the Rapaport Annual Lecture.   I thought he was ok, though a bit longwinded.  At the dinner afterwards in Lewis Sebring, the faculty dining hall next to Valentine, he pulled out his IPad.  I hate how Apple can control our lives so much but it was a pretty impressive device and everybody at the table (including me) was like "I want one". 

I got to see Sherlock Holmes at FLICS yesterday which was great because I didn't get a chance to in theaters.  Today the senior girls have made an IM softball team.  We play in the advanced league, with all the men's sports teams.  We lost to the Mens BBall team today but not by much! I thought we were going to get mercied but we lost 9-13! We're not too bad! I have terrible hand eye bat coordination for an ex athlete but the other girls were hitting balls, actually making contact! hahah, this should be a fun IM season. 

Anyways, I'm signed up to greet the newly accepted kids tomorrow morning for the Day Open House.  Maybe I'll see some blog readers there?

4/4-April Showers bring...

Song of the Day: Breakeven-The Script

WARM WEATHER! Gosh this weekend was just so fabulous.  If you came to visit this past weekend, you can't NOT have fallen in love with this place.  Once Amherst gets warm, you really get a chance to see whats great about the students and the campus.  People were soaking in the sun, sitting on Memorial Hill watching the baseball game, playing some tennis ball golf, frisbees came out, grills came out, outdoor games rolled out.  Saturday a bunch of sports teams had games so I walked down to the turf field to watch Kathleen's lacrosse game (they won by one!) and then a friend of mine who lives offcampus and conveniently right across from the fields had people over to enjoy the day.  I learned a new game called Cornhole, which involves tossing beanbags into a platform with a hole in it.  Its much harder than it looks because you need to account for the momentum of your throw sliding the beanbag across the platform into the hole. 

This lovely Easter morning I woke up early to meet up with fellow blogger Mike for a cup of coffee at new Raos, after stopping by the Black Sheep deli for a frittata breakfast sandwich.  Rao's definitely has changed, slightly for the worse.  As Mike said, it is bigger but has lost a lot of its hippie charm.  However, they do have a new pastry chef as Mike and I discovered when we split their new Espresso Cheesecakes (heavenly!)

This past week I started attending Summer Abs, which is the PE class offered by Justin Serpone, the head soccer coach.  It is brutal, on my abs and on my back but what can you do if you want a beach body before senior week?  I also had an art date to the Mead with a friend to help him out with his art history paper and afterwards went out to dinner to celebrate another friends birthday.  We went to Arigato 2, which is the hibatchi restaurant in town, a fun experience if you have a big group of people. 

I also got to read a friend's creative writing thesis, a collection of several short stories, as well as watch Kathleen's last Bluestocking concert (she is in the female bluesy acapella group on campus and has such an AMAZING voice for such a small girl-5feet-ish and not allowed to donate blood because she doesn't meet the weight requirement).  It just really astonishes me how talented some of the people who go to this school are, that they can produce such quality works, thesis, performances, unique instances. 

Anyways, with the weather getting nicer, my motivation to work dwindles which is terrible but I must chug along!

Spring?

Song of the Day: Bulletproof-La Roux

So I am not sure if it is spring or not anymore.  It was 70 degrees last Saturday and this past Saturday I was FREEZING.  When can I bring my warm weather clothing back to school?

Anyways it has been  A WHILE since I have written, blame it on the Spring Break. 

Some highlights since I've last written:

-I passed my art comp! I did a 20 minute presentation and included some images of work that has always stuck with me, tied it in with some quotes about art and then showed some of my own work.  Professor Upton liked it so much that they asked me to print out a copy of my notes and presentation so they could show it to future art majors. 

-Participated in a panel describing the Study Abroad experience for students who are science majors

-Spring break was great, a lot of relaxing, cafe's and people watching.  I haven't been to Rao's yet but after reading Mike's account of it I'm not sure I want to...

-Spent an afternoon in Northampton doing some shopping.  Not for me unfortunately but for a friend who was going to a professional photoshoot in Boston.  We got some really great (and fresh with real fruit!) smoothies at the Haymarket, a cafe with great treats (the eclairs looked delicious)

-Went home this past weekend for a job interview with a PR firm.  ECCD Day is a day of interviewing with many employers looking for liberal arts grads.  You go in half hour slots that you apply for.  So its pretty convenient to get a lot of interviewing in, and its just for select liberal arts schools so its not filled with hundreds of people either.  Its great that I don't have class on Friday because I got to go home Thursday and have a relaxing morning before the interview

This upcoming week isn't too bad, I have a Statistics test and a painting due on Thursday.  We will be starting to give out tickets for Spring Concert to Amherst students which is really exciting.  We also just got our email with all the dates that seniors need to keep in mind up to Graduation...AH!  So for the rest of the semester, I really just need to focus on finding a job now that I've passed both comps.  and also the concert.  and actually my classes too. but that doesn't seem too bad...

3/7 - "Smile! Spring is Here!"

Music Video of the Day:  Ok Go - This Too Shall Pass

"Smile! Spring is here!" was what was written in chalk on the sidewalk today as I was going to the gym on the gloriously warm day that was today.  It was nice enough for me to sit outside of Amherst Coffee today to finish up some reading.  I hope spring is actually coming, but the weather has a habit of teasing us with bouts of warmer weather and then torrents of freezing weather (flashback to freshman year after my lacrosse spring break preseason trip, when we got back to campus there was still 3-4 feet of snow...)

The beginning of this week was a bit busy, with a paper and an exam on Tuesday, some Concert odds and ends that needed to get started and some professors I needed to speak with.  Professors usually have office hours which is generally a good system because its set aside time for professors to be in their office to talk with students, but the downside to that sometimes you catch the professor when there is already another student talking with them and then the hour passes by and you weren't able to speak with your professor.

On Wednesday I went to a Fiscal Fitness workshop that was thrown by the Career Center.  They went over credit cards, retirement funds, loans and interest rates, which was very informative as I have no idea about how to manage finances.  Its scary to think that I need to deal with all of that after I graduate but now that I have a bit of an introduction, it shouldn't be too bad...hopefully. 

Thursday, Program Board brought Loni Love to campus.  She's a comedian who's appeared on the Chelsea Lately Show as well as VH1's "I Love the [insert decade]"  There was such a great turnout to the show, around 150 people!  She was hysterical and also incorporated audience participation which I think everybody got a laugh out of.

I have my art history comprehensive on Thursday so I need to prepare for that but afterwards its Spring Break! I plan on going on and just being a vegetable the whole week.  I"m really excited. 

Congratulations to the Women's Hockey team for winning NESCACs today! It was such an exciting OT game!

2-28: YES! I CAN GRADUATE!

I passed my comps!  Well, one of them at least.  Thats why I haven't been posting  these past 2 weeks, because I've been studying and being generally swamped...So lets backtrack a bit. 

There wasn't much exciting news from two weeks ago.  Saturday I was invited to a semiformal that was at an off campus fraternity.  Frats were abolished on campus many, many years ago but that doesn't mean students can't join those off campus, they just can't bring any of that activity onto campus.

This past week has been a little more hectic (I wish the school cycle was more spread out, instead of one week light, one week insane...).  

Monday was more hectic than my usual Mondays.  I had a meeting to go over security needs for Spring Concert, had to go to a Biology lecture on aesthetics and animals (frogs and snakes specifically), and then went Part 1 of the Salon Series that the Visiting Artist Sara Rafferty is putting on.  It was about the structure of stand up comedy and comparing Ellen Degeneres with Lenny Bruce.  It wasn't what I was expecting, because it was more of an analysis of how comedy is an aggressive act, and I desired to hear more clips of the two comedians, but I'm glad I checked it out. 

Tuesday night I went to a cooking workshop that my friend Jen, our dorm's RC, put on.  I figured I need to at least have 1 good recipe in my arsenal if I want to eat at all next year when I am living on my own.  It was in the Lewis Sebring kitchen, which cooks for the professors dining hall and we worked Howie who is the head chef in Lewis Sebring.  We learned how to make this chicken dish with couscous, chipotle peppers and loads of vegetables.  It was sooooo delicious, I'm excited to put on dinner parties now!  We also learned how to make Banana's Fosters (?) which is caramelized bananas with rum and strawberry cheesecake ice cream.  Unfortunately, Margy and I burned our caramel, so I will not be serving any dessert at my future dinner parties. 

Thursday I unfortunately had to miss all my classes because I needed to drive out to Boston for an interview for a job.  It went pretty well, and they said to check in by April or May when they would know more about openings so fingers crossed!

FRIDAY!  Friday was a big day because I had my biology comprehensive exam, which determines whether or not I graduate with that major.  Its a 30 minute q and a with a panel of 2 professors about a certain topic in Biology.  For my exam, I stumbled through it, and I was unable to answer some of their questions.  I thought I for sure failed (which really means I write a paper about the topic instead).  I was freaking out all night because everybody else had heard they passed and I hadn't received email about it yet.  I then realized that my email wasn't being forwarded correctly and that I had actually passed!!!  So one comp down, one to go!  But it is a relief that the 4 years of biology knowledge hasn't been for naught and I will be graduating!

Tonight is a celebration for the seniors because we have about 2010 hours til graduation.  We are getting senior sweatshirts (i am so excited!) and pizza and then going on a pub crawl! 

This weeks Song of the Day is a shoutout to our fellow Nescac-ers at Middlebury- Midd Kid

2/14-Happy Chinese New Year and Happy Valentine's Day

Song of the Day-The Roots-The Seed 2.0

Good news, we are not in the midst of a snowpocolypse!  We were supposed to have a lot of snow this past week but instead we got an inch...maybe not even.

Even better news, we officially announced The Roots for our Spring Concert!  I think they'll put on a great show in LeFrak (our basketball gym).  We actually just put on another concert this past Friday.  Vusi Mahlasela, a South African "folk" singer who sings about anti-apartheid themes came to Buckley, our recital hall, and performed an hour set.  It was a very powerful and energetic performance I think.  I mean someone who sang at Nelson Mandela's 90th birthday party HAS to be good.  See for yourselves: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqupFUoMvW4

Wednesday we celebrated Haley's birthday so we drove up to Northampton to Osaka's, a Japanese/Hibachi restaurant, had some really lovely sushi, and then went to The Dirty Truth which was down the road (and also on my bucket list!)  Northampton is a nice break from campus and really convenient as well (20 minutes down Route 9). 

This upcoming week should be fairly laid-back, which means I really should take advantage of the time to study for comps.  Hopefully I have enough initiative to follow through!