Keeping in Touch

Justine Yentsch

As you’re heading off to college, you’re hit with a barrage of advice from relatives, teachers, and older friends, but one of the most important pieces of advice you should remember is to try to keep in contact with people back home as much as possible. It makes the transition from high school to college much easier, and it’s always better to combat homesickness before it even starts. Sure, if you go home during breaks you’ll get to see everyone, but there’s something very therapeutic about calling/skype-ing with your best friend or convincing your family to put your pet in front of the webcam.

College lets you meet tons of new people, and with about 1,100 students at Transy, you’re bound to find many people who share your interests and make you laugh. However, it’s nice to have a support system coming from back home, so you can tell someone (and brag) about all your new experiences and adventures. I’m not telling you to start up scrapbooking (sorry mom, I haven’t taken your advice to make one), but I’ve made sure to take a lot of pictures and posting a lot to Facebook so my parents that I’m not just hiding in my dorm all the time. You can keep framed pictures of friends, family, and pets around your dorm, and some people make murals on their walls of their favorite photos.

Another thing that I’ve recently discovered is how exciting it is to give and receive letters. Continue reading

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Bon Appetite!

Mattie Bruton

It was a fairly typical Wednesday- I was slogging through my mid week grind, a little stressed by a full plate of Rambler obligations, routine homework, and an impending FYRS presentation. I plotted the distressingly full schedule for the rest of the week as I made my way to the caf to grab a bite of lunch before hitting the books once more.

But when I entered the caf I immediately noticed something that was a little out of the ordinary- the sound of smooth French music, like one might imagine wafting through the night air at a Parisian cafe, was surrounding me. There was also a buzz of energy and excitement in the atmosphere which was rather atypical for a Wednesday lunch hour. At first I was confused, but then I put the pieces together- it was an international lunch day, and today’s theme seemed to be French cuisine.

As a special treat for students, the Study Abroad office and Sodexo partner  once a month to create yummy international themed lunches in the Forrer Cafeteria. And this means more than just a few limp baguettes- for the French international lunch day, the caf truly outdid itself in authenticity and scrumptiousness.

There was so much variety of delectable French dishes, from spinach crepes to ratatouille to bouillabaisse seafood soup, that it was hard to choose which among them. The The pizza bar had been replaced by a selection of grapes, crunchy French bread, and fancy cheeses. For dessert, there was of course all manner of tasty French pastries and mousses. Continue reading

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Pizza, Calzones, and Other Reasons Ordering Food is Perfect

Justine Yentsch

There is just something about college that makes late-night pizza orders perfectly acceptable no matter what situation.

Studying? Of course you deserve cinnamon sticks.

Failed a test? Obviously you need a large cheese pizza (and you should probably start reading your textbook more often)

Got an A on a test? Pretty sure cheese sticks are necessary.

Fortunately, there are plenty of options for ordering food in Lexington, no matter what time, mood, or craving. In fact, periodically through the year, you get coupon books in the mail, with deals on everything from haircuts to chili. And at Transylvania, there are definitely some favorites that are pretty much offered every time there is free food offered at an event (which thankfully happens quite often). Since Lexington is a college town, there are many restaurants in close proximity, so it doesn’t take long for your delivery-person to arrive in Back Circle with your food (and yes, every delivery service I’ve experienced so far already knows where the Transylvania dorms are). So here are some of the classics you’ll have to try sometime in your college life, or even just in the first month of school (No judgement here): Continue reading

Categories: Campus Life, Dining, Food, Lexington, Studying | Leave a comment

Who Wants to be a Major-naire!

Rachel Morgan

So you want to be a major-naire!

Okay, okay, so there’s no fanfare or anything when you announce your major. There’s no way we could do that for everyone. As we all know, though, picking a major is extremely important, not only for our major but for our future. Our parents tell us, our high school teachers tell us, our friends worry over it…it’s all you hear when you talk about going to college: “What are you going to study?”

1. Undecided is okay! Most students come to Transy without really knowing what they want to study. Professors are open to discuss what you need for each major, where that can lead, how to think about each. Upperclassmen often encourage students to stay undecided until they are sure of what they want to study. It’s perfectly acceptable to identify as Undecided until you have to declare your major at the end of your sophomore year.

2. It’s okay to change your major. Yes, you do have to declare at the end of sophomore year. However, Transylvania doesn’t consider that the end-all-be-all. You can decided to change your major at any time, add or drop minors, even….

3. Double majoring is a-okay! You can pick up two majors, though triple-majoring is not recommended. If you have the work ethic for a double major, Transy will support you to the top! It’s rough, and scheduling can be a nightmare, but we want you to succeed at what you want to do, not just attend to attend. We encourage learning; as students, we’re expected to ‘question everything, achieve anything’, and we want to put that to use as much as possible!

4. Your advisors do want to help you excel. My freshman advisor was a Spanish professor. I couldn’t get farther away from Spanish due to some bad experiences in high school. Even as I declared a Psychology major and tried to get into Psych courses, my advisor did her very best to get me into the best courses, get me ready to graduate. I only switched to a Psych major this semester, and even still I am greeted warmly and welcomed by my Freshman advisor into her office. She still cheerfully greets me “Hola Raquel, como estás?!” and despite my fumbled attempts to respond, grins and chatters away with me about classes and courses. The professors want to see us succeed, and will help us to get there.

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See the World at Transylvania

Sam Crankshaw

Study abroad is encouraged at almost every university. It is also quite costly at most universities and can often be difficult to transfer class credits back to your home university.

That is not the case at Transylvania University.

One of the reasons I chose to come to Transylvania was the great accessibility to study abroad programs. The University has several partner institutions throughout the world and is a member of the Kentucky Institute for International Studies consortium.

As soon as you become interested in a program, you can get an appointment at our study abroad office within just a couple of days. At that first meeting you can explore your options and finances.

Speaking of finances, study abroad could not be much more affordable than it is here. Regarding semester and year long programs, not only do your outside scholarships and any financial aid that you may have apply to your program costs, but you can apply for additional scholarships through the University and the school you will attend abroad, as well as use up to $5,000 of your academic scholarship from Transy. With all of that said, you can accumulate a pretty sizable budget to take abroad without even dipping into your own pockets. In fact, studying abroad will actually save my parents a little bit of money. Continue reading

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Demystifying the Liberal Arts Curriculum


If you’ve talked to anyone at Transylvania or similar institutions about a liberal arts education, you’ve probably heard it described as a way to educate the whole person.

I like that definition, and I think it fits, but it doesn’t really tell you anything. Sure, the liberal arts experience is about much more than just the classes you take, but wouldn’t it be helpful to see what kind of classes you actually would be taking in order to earn a liberal arts education?

That’s why I’m here.

Our curriculum is broken up into five areas you need to fill, as a way to make things easier.

Area 1 covers general education courses:

  • First Year Seminar and First Year Research Seminar (loved both of those classes way back in 2011-12!)
  • Lifetime Fitness (I’m taking it now, and it’s easier than health/gym in high school. Nothing to be dreading!)
  • 1 Math course (I took Elementary Statistics and, for a person who has never loved/excelled in math, it was great!)
  • Foreign Language. You have to take two semesters of the same language (though you can test out of this requirement). I took Spanish II and III with Profesora Contreras and loved them both!

Area 2 covers more basic general education courses:

  • Humanities (I took Perspectives on Literature with Dr. Taylor, though introductory classes in fields like religion or philosophy could also count)
  • Fine Arts (I took Intro to Fine Arts in LONDON, but there are other classes to fill that one as well)
  • Natural Science (I took Environmental Science and it was probably my favorite class of my first year!)
  • Social Science (I took Intro to Sociology, even though my AP Psychology credit filled this one)

Area 3 requires you take a class from List A and List B — different groups of classes that expose you to different cultural traditions. I took Judeo-Christian Heritage and next year I’ll take Islamic Religious Traditions to fill that one — and both count for my religion minor, too!

Area 4 is where things get really liberal artsy. You take two sets of two upper-level classes in fields other than your major. This allows you to go more in-depth in multiple fields.

  • For my first set, I took two anthropology classes that also count for my environmental studies minor: Sustainable Development and Appalachia and the Environment.
  • For my second set, I’m taking two religion courses that count towards that minor — I’m in Buddhist Religious Traditions now and I’m taking Sustainability and Theology during May term.

Area 5 requires two writing-intensive courses outside of your major. I was strategic and took Area 4s that also counted for Area 5s — Sustainable Development and Buddhist Religious Traditions fill this one for me.

To start exploring requirements for majors and minors, check out the program websites here. As you can see, there is still flexibility within every requirement in our curriculum.

That’s what makes the liberal arts most meaningful – you can make your education anything you want!

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