Thursday, September 15, 2011

Of Theory & Coffee: Resources at Regis College

Week two at Regis College went off without a hitch!  This past weekend I spent Saturday morning directing both graduates and undergraduates to different resources available on campus.  Such resources included the library, where students could find free printing, the hours of the dining halls, and free coffee (that’s right, FREE).  I was very pleased with the openness of students and their willingness to inquire about happenings on campus.  One resource in particular was the Regis Shuttle which took students from Alumnae Hall to Riverside Station.  From my numerous (four) T-riding experiences, I learned that this particular train transports students into different parts of Boston including Fenway Quincy Market, and Government Center on the Green line.  It seemed like such a great way for students to go from studying in the library at Regis to meeting a friend for lunch in the North End.  Both commuter and resident students seemed to using this service and were amazed at how easy the shuttle was to use.  What a great way to integrate Regis students into the city life in Boston!
With one week under my belt, I feel like I am finally starting to develop a routine: wake up, breakfast, check e-mail, library, check e-mail, lunch, work (check e-mail at while at work), dinner, homework, check e-mail, bed…I may or may not get up once in the night to check my e-mail one more time…just kidding!  While keeping up with e-mails do not entirely consume my day, it is very important.  Most, if not all, of the course information is now available online at Regis College, with Moodle being the major server.  Professors and students alike are able to communicate via email and through Moodle which is great considering how busy most graduate students and graduate professors can be.  I myself have enjoyed having both my course materials and my professors at my fingertips as my days can get very packed.  For example I am currently working on a Concept Analysis for my Nursing Theory class in which we take a concept and work to further define its boundaries.  In the midst of doing some intensive research I suddenly decided to change my topic.  So, I emailed my professor and asked her what she thought.  No more than one hour later I had received the O.K. to switch topics.  Knowing that most professors check their emails throughout the day, I was able to maximize my time and my professor’s by sending a simple email.  So, I feel that graduate students like me make it a habit to check emails continuously throughout the day in order to return the favor.  And with the integration of iPhones and Droids into society, it is even easier to communicate via email and Moodle.  I have yet to make the switch to the “phone as a computer” side of the fence but I have a feeling that the transition is coming soon.  Regardless, I am still able to stay on top of emails by using the computers provided by Regis all around campus.
In general, Regis has made going to school easy for me.  Yes, classes are certainly challenging as graduate classes should be, but Regis has made my transition to graduate studies much more enjoyable by taking care of the “other stuff”.  While in the thick of intensive studies, most of us don’t think to sign-off on healthcare forms, obtain a parking pass, or even eat dinner. But through the use of extensive advertising and campus resources, Regis has taken care of the little (and big) things.  Wandering through College Hall you can find posters reminding student about financial aid deadlines, upcoming info sessions, and IT hours of service.  Other essentials on campus are very convenient and often free of charge.  These services include parking, printing, and attendance to social events.  The Graduate program also offers sandwiches, salads, and coffee at a small charge.  This is great for students like me who take night classes and often forget to pack a dinner.  Through the “Graduate Students Run on Regis” initiative, the Graduate office has worked to keep graduate students running…literally.  Free weekend coffee breaks have allowed me to efficiently spend four hours in the library and then run through Chestnut Street at lightning speeds.  Also offered is the Graduate lounge with a microwave and TV, and Happy Hours in the Student Union (I have yet to decide if I’m more excited about the happy hour or the free coffee). 
With all of these resources available I am better able to optimize my time and focus on my classes.  Pathophysiology is my favorite so far; the professor is hilarious and very clear about his expectations on what to know for exams.  My first pharmacology class was great as well.   I really enjoy learning how different drugs are processed by the body and how physicians prescribe certain medications and why.  Most would not say that “pharm” is their favorite subject but the professor has seemed to spark an equal interest in the other students by using real-life scenarios and stories.  The textbooks used in these classes are also wonderfully helpful and make the extensive readings well worth it. 
As week two comes to a close I am looking forward to delving into my Concept Analysis paper.  I made a pledge to myself to not only understand Nursing Theory, but to see theory in my everyday life.  Let me just say that if there is a theory revolving around the concept of free coffee, count me in!

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