Breathe Hope: Blankets For Cystic Fibrosis (Service Event) – November 15th (7:00-8:30 PM)

Breathe Hope is an amazing organization on campus that I wish I heard about sooner. They do a lot of amazing events around campus and in the central Ohio area to raise awareness about Cystic Fibrosis.They volunteer at events for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, make blankets and other crafts for patients in the Pulmonary Unit at Nationwide Children’s hospital, and they also raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation by holding yoga classes and other fundraising events throughout the year. They really believe in creating a lasting relationship with these patients and their families and making a change to hopefully bring an end to cystic fibrosis related deaths. I loved to hear how passionate the members of this organization were about creating change and educating people about cystic fibrosis and its impacts on people’s day to day lives. They really are very passionate about this cause and seem to invest a lot of their time into making sure that more and more people are aware about it.

When I went into the event the members broke down what their organization stood for and what different events they were planning related to raising money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. They had a lot of fun and unique ways to raise money that I feel will get people involved and help raise money such as yoga events, a battle of the bands event, brunch at the Wellington, etc and the proceeds go to cystic fibrosis patients and hospitals. The reason me and many other people were there, though, was to make blankets for the children in the Pulmonary Unit at Nationwide. Winter in Ohio can get really cold and to keep them warm we made cute fuzzy blankets that will keep them warm and cozy this winter season.

I have personally never been good at knitting or anything like that so I was a little nervous when I heard that we would be making blankets for the children. I still decided to go because I felt even though I was lacking in the knitting department I could probably help out in some other way. When I arrived I found that they had blankets that were already created which was quite a relief. They just needed for us to help make the blankets more unique with different designs and by creating frills on the ends of the blanket. It was good to have people on my team, who I found out were also International Affairs Scholars, that knew how the blankets should turn out so we ended up making a few beautiful blankets. I also decided to write a couple of cards, since the holiday season is coming up, and I felt I should just write some positive (and funny) notes to keep them going.

This event really helped me realize many things, one being that there is just so many things that we should all be grateful for. There are children and adults that are going through so much pain and suffering and we sometimes forget about the people we have in our own lives until it is too late. It really is a wake up call that we should all be trying to contribute to making this world a more beautiful and positive place where everyone is loved and accepted. Breathe Hope and other amazing student organizations on campus are contributing their time and efforts to making other people’s lives better and I hope to contribute to them as well!

 

IA Mini Involvement Fair (Non-IA Event) – October 25th (5:30-7:00 PM)

I attended the IA Mini Involvement fair and I am extremely happy that I did. I was considering not attending because I attended the involvement fair earlier in the year and I already met many of the organisations that was said to be there. The problem, though, was I was so overwhelmed with the huge selection of clubs and organizations at the involvement fair. I received so many emails and and left with so many fliers and free trinkets that I ended up only joining one club which was the Eritrean/Ethiopian club, only because I know everyone there and that is the country where I am from. It’s is nearly ⅔’s of the way into the semester and I feel like I should get involved into more clubs related to my major and also orgs that focus on service. I came to the Mini-IA fair expecting to find at least one club that would maybe be of my interest, but I would soon find out I found the student org of my dreams.

Prior to this mini involvement fair, I was searching through OSU’s student activities site to find clubs of my interest. I searched and searched hoping to find a student organization that was similar to my favourite club in high school, OMUN. Ohio Model United Nations (OMUN) is probably the reason why I decided to major in International Studies and why I also decided to join International Affairs scholars. Getting to represent a country and taking on their identity and trying to understand their cultural, environmental, socio-economic problems, really is what interests me the most. Also being able to debate was a big thing for me as well. In my high school debating over certain topics was seen by other students as me trying to “argue” with them and they would get defensive. In OMUN though, I was able to debate with students who understood the importance of debate and who had the same passions as myself. So when I finished high school, I knew that I would need to find a student organization that embodied that same atmosphere as well.

Through the website, though, I did not see any clubs that was labeled OSU’s United Nations Club, or something of the sort, so I thought we didn’t have one. I was considering creating it myself until I came to the involvement fair and talked to NIck, who I later found out was the president of OSU’s equivalent of the Ohio Model United Nations’ club I was involved in high school. I was ecstatic to finally find a club I would truly be passionate about and he could tell I was passionate as well. We talked for a while about goals and interests in working in the United Nations and foreign service and I knew I had to join this club immediately. I guess he could tell I was really passionate about what I was talking about, so he invited me to a United Nations seminar they were having the Sunday following the IA involvement fair. He encouraged me to also go to their meetings and told me they were preparing for different competitions that put them up against schools like Harvard, Princeton, and other highly ranked universities. Everything about this club is what I truly enjoy and am passionate about, and I cannot wait to finally get more involved! I am honestly grateful for this involvement fair because I would have otherwise not found the perfect club for me!

Education Abroad Expo (Academic Event) – September 4th (2:00 – 6:00 PM), Ohio Union

The very first event I attended this fall semester was the Education Abroad Expo. It was an amazing opportunity for me to learn about a vast majority of the study abroad options that are available to me at my time here at The Ohio State University. I learned many valuable things about study abroad in general but also about the different requirements and responsibilities that come with traveling abroad. Prior to this event, I had a vague idea about what study abroad really was. I assumed that it was just an opportunity to get to travel and have fun, but that is not the main focus at all. Although having fun is one of the aspects of studying abroad, I learned that it gives you the opportunity to really broaden your horizon. During a trip, you get to learn about a group of people, their culture and their way of life and you get to really immerse yourself and try to make a difference and really leave your mark on the world.

There were many study abroad options that caught my attention. Many of the options were catered to my general major as International Affairs and they all seemed to be very intriguing and unique in their own way. I feel it would be impossible for me to narrow down all of these options to the program I will end up doing but I tried to focus on the options that were relevant to my major and also was in an area that I feel I could benefit from visiting. I wanted to focus on a middle eastern/northern African study abroad since I want to improve my Arabic speaking skills and also because they have a lot of opportunities for International Affairs and Business students. Countries such as Morocco, Egypt, and Israel caught my attention because they fit the demographic I was looking for and they are all beautiful and culturally rich countries. I will definitely be able to practice and improve my Arabic speaking skills and also be able to study and gain knowledge relevant to my major.

When I was first considering study abroad’s before the fair, I was originally looking to do one that was during the summer but I am now starting to also consider ones that are a semester long. I am still leaning towards the summer long option because I think it is a good and reasonable amount of time to be away from home and it also gives me the opportunity to experience the culture and livelihood in another country better than if I only stayed for spring or winter break.

I want to embark on more than one study abroad so I know that I will need money on order to do that. This study abroad fair really helped me learn about the many scholarship opportunities given to Ohio State students in particular and through other outside factors as well. The college of arts and sciences has its own study abroad scholarships that I know I will definitely utilize. Although I am not considering doing a study abroad this year, I feel I am well informed and prepared for applying to various study abroad’s in the future!