Jun 062014


Hola! So I have decided to post three theme-based question and answer (or pregunta y respuesta) articles. See below for more!

1)   Where do you eat on campus? Why?

There are three main dining facilities to eat at on campus: Collis Café, Courtyard Café and 53 Commons. In addition, one can find great baked goods and sandwiches at these inner-library dining shops: King Arthur Flour and Novack Café. For all the dining spaces, the food at Dartmouth is pretty great. If I had to select my favorite dining facility however, I would choose 53 Commons (also known as FoCo) because 53 Commons always has a variety of foods to select from and combining the varied foods can create tasty, novel dishes that are out of this world.

2)   In the midst of your busy schedule, what do you do to compensate for learning how to cook whilst in college?

At Dartmouth, because of the numerous opportunities to get involved in activities, it is easy to never cook and only rely upon the great dining facilities for regular meals. However, I think it is really important to learn how to cook, even in the midst of a typical Dartmouth schedule. Fortunately, there are many cooking organizations on campus that provide an opportunity for students to learn how to cook, while hanging out with crafty people with a food mission. Amongst these organizations are Spoon University, Students Fighting Hunger, affinity houses and more. If not able to attend some of the cooking events of these organizations, one can still learn to cook on their own. Just set aside an hour and a half of your day, select dishes from Pinterest to cook and pay a visit to the Dartmouth Coop to purchase needed ingredients to prepare a wonderful meal for yourself and friends.

3)   What off-campus dining facilities would you recommend and why?

All of them are great in my opinion. The site below is also helpful for selecting restaurants to eat at in Hanover. Lastly, I would recommend visiting a food both during Hanover’s Farmers Market, which occurs every summer and fall.




Jun 062014


Hola! So I have decided to post three theme-based question and answer (or pregunta y respuesta) articles. See below for more!

1)   What classes did you take this school year?

As I progress through my Dartmouth career term by term, it is really hard to remember all the classes I have taken. Nonetheless, fall, winter and spring term, I took the following courses: Biology 12, Chemistry 51 and 52, Public Policy 45 and 91, History 6 and 78, Math 8 and Physics 3.

2)   What aspects did you enjoy the most about your classes?

I  enjoyed all my classes this year simply because the professors at Dartmouth are amazing, dexterous and teach beyond the textbook. Professors help to enhance the learning material by applying the subject matter to real-life examples, as a result of their expertise in the fields they teach. For instance, I took Chemistry 52 with Professor Gribble winter term. He did not only teach the foundations of organic chemistry, but rather, he gave my classmates and I knowledge about natural carcinogenic compounds in our world so that we may apply our understanding of chemistry to be safe in our environment. As Professor Gribble exemplifies, all Dartmouth professors are cool and informative and I am really grateful to be able to learn beyond textbook material, through their courses.

3)   What advice would you give others for selecting courses or managing pressing classes?  

Simply put, don’t worry.

If you want to take a class, go for it. All you have to do is put in the effort to make the arduous course load work. It is important to have a balance of classes and not take 3 classes that require every minute of your time, giving you no room in your schedule to relax or dine. However, if you look for an escape to your class schedule by avoiding the classes you need to complete your academic goals at Dartmouth, you will place yourself in a situation of trouble. In sum, if you are willing to put in the time and effort to learn, don’t worry yourself to not take a class that seems challenging. You will enjoy classes your heart desires to peruse, despite the hard workload, so go for it! Besides, in the long run, those challenging classes will pay off in ways you never imagined. Don’t be afraid to learn :).

Jun 062014

Spring roams out at Dartmouth well

The sun shines gold, the flowers are swell

People lay out on the Green

They share time with friends and enjoy their cuisine

Frisbee, soccer, jogging, biking

Tennis, skateboarding, football, kiting

Many things to do, so much to see

Happiness lures by every tree

Occom Pond

The point of this poem is to allude to the fact that there are many outdoor activities to enjoy at Dartmouth during spring term, due to the amazing weather in the spring. In addition to enjoying recreational activities outdoors, there are also fantastic barbeques planned throughout the term. For example, near finals week in May, Dartmouth’s Programing Board planned an event where music, kettle corn, Dippin Dots, and other delectable items were offered. In sum, spring term, like all the other terms at Dartmouth, is enjoyable. The weather is truly refreshing and one should ingeniously fabricate outlets of fun for taking advantage of the good Dartmouth weather.


Jun 032014

Freshman Year: Check.

I am writing this final post on my way to Logan International Airport, to catch a flight back to Beirut, Lebanon. Although I am excited to be with family and among high school friends, I leave with much nostalgia at all the great memories and experiences I’ve had this year.

The last couple of days before Move-out Day, and after finals were over, everyone was wrapping up the year and enjoying the beautiful summer weather as they please.
My friends and I went kayaking on the river (the Connecticut River is a ten-minute walk from campus), visited the Dartmouth organic farm (totally run by students and only 3 miles off campus), and soaked in the sun on the Green. 20140603_163949 20140524_181414

For my very last night on campus, we stayed up all night to watch the sunrise from a fourth-floor balcony in one of the residential buildings.


These last few days after the hectic finals period reminded me of what I love most about Dartmouth: the people. I am so incredibly thankful for the friends I’ve made here, and I can not wait to come back, get to know them even better over the next three years, and make new friends along the way.

Happy Summer!

May 232014

It is so wild to think that I have only one more week as a freshman! Man, how did that happen? Things are coming to a close so fast. Wednesday was the last day of organized practice. Next Wednesday will be my last day of class. One more set of finals, and then I’m on my way home. It is a sad feeling coping with the thought of parting ways with this campus for the summer. Just as the warm weather is starting to become a regular thing, we will all (except the sophomores) pack our bags and head home or on to a new adventure for the summer months. This has been a year of highs and lows, laughter and cries, sunshine and snow, and the list is endless. And I wouldn’t trade it for the world. My time at Dartmouth has taught me so much about who I am, how I can grow and who I can become. And its only been a year! Check in with me in three and THEN ask me what I’ve learned.

As I reminisce, I remember my first Foco cookie. I remember sweating like I have never before as I ran 17 laps around the homecoming bon fire in a Superwomen outfit. My first time in a frat. That time I spent all day in the library I didn’t realize we had received our first snowstorm! Training at the Dartmouth Skiway. The Game of Thrones snow sculpture in the middle of the green and climbing up the throne to get a picture at the top! That time when the snow finally melted. My first trip to the river. Spring study sessions in the woods by the Lone Pine. Green Key (enough said).

The start of Winter Carnival

The start of Winter Carnival

Dartmouth has provided me with an experience that exceeded my wildest dreams. I was given an opportunity to let my creativity reach new levels. I took classes that questioned the ethics of our medical policies, I learned about the attractive forces between molecules, and even analyzed in great detail the major questions and events of the Cold War. The liberal arts education here shapes students into well rounded and knowledgable individuals. I have been taught how to carry myself, express myself and speak for what I believe in. I am so thankful to have been given this opportunity to spend four years of my life in Hanover.

A perfect Spring day in Hanover!

A perfect Spring day in Hanover!

May 232014

Sun, music, and bbqs: this is what Green Key is all about! Green Key is the big weekend of the Spring Term. And as much as I enjoyed Homecoming Weekend and Winter Carnival Weekend, this weekend was even better!


A welcome break from a busy week with a few midterms, GK was a relaxing time with friends and most of it was spent outside enjoying the beautiful weather. The Big Concert was on Friday Night, and the artist was LUPE FIASCO, which is crazy that we all get to see him from free right on campus! Below is a picture of a classmate and waiting before he came on stage!


And then over the next 2 days, there are all sorts of fun events, from BBQs to comedy shows and outdoor dance parties and gatherings by the river and canoeing trips. Below is another picture of me and 2 friends about to swim in the river on Saturday morning.

So far, spring has been so much fun, but also going by so fast with classes ending next week. My freshman year at D is almost over, and GK was definitely a good weekend to reconnect again with friends and just have time to enjoy being here. lupe river

May 222014

It’s been a pretty hectic couple of weeks, which is interesting because I’ve had a lot to write about but very little time in which to write it.  Accordingly, this’ll probably end up as kind of a double post.

You’ll probably hear a lot about Green Key from any current student, but very little in the way of an explanation.  I’m not going to break with that trend here, Green Key is hard to describe, but easy to experience.  Pretty much anywhere you go on campus, you’re bound to find some sort of celebration or adventure or diversion from the usual rhythm of college life.  This year, we had performances from Lupe Fiasco, the Chainsmokers, and a ton of local and regional touring bands which meant that there was music happening somewhere on campus pretty much continuously for the entire weekend.  Even my old roommate decided to get in on the action and presented his senior piano recital on Saturday afternoon.  The music, combined with the fact that President Hanlon must have finally found Jim Kim’s weather machine and kept the weather sunny despite the forecast, made for a phenomenal weekend to be outside.  (Seriously though, it’s always good weather here when it needs to be:  Green Key, Homecoming Bonfire, Dimensions… except for Fieldstock my sophomore summer. We don’t talk about that.)

I might have tried to take advantage of the outdoors a little too much and ended up in the ER after taking a Frisbee to the face, but I got ice cream after my stitches so I guess that worked out ok.

Note, this is a size small cone at ‘Ice Cream Fore U’ in West Lebanon. For obvious reasons, I highly recommend it.

It’s weird how the term seems to be wrapping up already.  My friends are presenting their theses, we’re getting Commencement instructions in the mail, and I’m booking flights for my research job at Case Western this summer.  I just finished the last paper for my architecture class, which will probably be the last non-engineering paper of my life.  Around this time four years ago, I was researching dorms online, so I guess it’s appropriate that I finish by researching Dartmouth dorms again for a paper on the design of the Choates.  While I was writing, I got sidetracked and ended up reading the Wikipedia article on all the buildings at Dartmouth.  I hadn’t even heard of a pretty big chunk of them.  After four years here, I still have places left to explore.  I’ve been trying to check all of them out without being egregiously creepy.  Of course, most of them are just classrooms and offices.  I probably should have expected that.  There have been some gems though:  crazy artwork, underground tunnels, that greenhouse on top of the biology building.  I found a secret society house while attempting to chase a rogue moose.  Heck, I found the secret hiding place of the Keggy the Keg suit once, but got sworn to secrecy.  Even if it isn’t Green Key, the possibilities on this campus are hard to describe, but easy to experience.

I’m still kind of holding out and looking for some sort of Harry Potter-esque Room of Requirement, but it’s probably not going to happen.  Then again, I would never have been able to tell the story of climbing on to the roof of my high school if the seniors hadn’t told me there was a pool up there.  So yeah, there’s a pool on the roof.


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May 192014

14S: There was contra-dancing the second (?) weekend of term when it was still snowing (in the context of our current weather, this is ridiculous), crashing birthday parties and meeting some great new people through them, meeting people in general, SO many new people, hosting three students for Dimensions, orgo, midterms, getting very sick, SUN, the end of sugaring season and actually having a bottle of syrup we made sitting on my desk, farm, running outside again, good breakfasts, totally confusing stats class situation, more sun, Green Key. In two weeks it will have been a year since my freshman spring term, two years since graduating high school. How did it get so late so soon?

Finals period is actually next week, so here’s a hefty posting of pictures before I wither away for a bit.

Campus looks like this right now (some of the time):


overdone but I can’t help it, so beautiful


lush patch feels like home. seriously, socks and sandals are very important in Oregon

Boring but exciting to me, One Wheelock has new mugs:


Been going on some short runs, here’s Occom Pond! I cannot run around it without seeing at least one couple walking along the path, but I guess love is also beautiful (sorry no pictures though, will work on creeping)


Funky tree on the way to Balch Hill, going underneath it makes me feel as if I’m adventuring in the wilderness which I guess you could say is pretty lame but I grew up heavily influenced by The Hobbit so now it should make sense:


In the midst of multiple midterms, meaning orgo, I suddenly found that it was Green Key and there was good music everywhere. Seriously, Collis and Programming Board REALLY stepped it up this year. I met a ’66 (50 year connection, bb, best classes ever) when Reckless Breakfast (folk-y band very well loved in this area) was playing on Collis Patio and we nodded our heads to the music together, most chill interaction I have had with a Dartmouth alum, it was great. There was Block Party on Friday afternoon (turnout amazing considering that it was definitely starting to sprinkle), Lupe Fiasco on Friday night, an event at the Farm and Lawn Party on Saturday, Chainsmokers on Saturday night…


shoddy picture but tall heights on the patio at the Hill Winds Lawn Party. Free food too!

Despite having all there is good to life available to me this weekend, I spent my days and nights at the library this weekend. My roommate and I were in KAF during the Lupe Fiasco concert (yes, judge, go ahead) and the guy managing took pity on us and told us to take as much food as we wanted out of this treasure-trove of a paper bag. So we did:


i ate it all

Speaking of kaf, I am now the last person working here tonight and therefore am going to sleep (also the library closes at 2AM so I guess I don’t really have a choice).


Next up: ???


May 112014

Week 7 just ended! It’s crazy how fast time goes by here at Dartmouth.

This weekend was a perfect spring weekend. I had finals last week so this weekend was relatively easy in terms of work-load. And the weather was great!

There was a Relay for Life race, where you could run to raise money and/or awareness for cancer.  It was a 24 hour event and lasted throughout the night. Here is a picture of me and a teammate who did laps for Relay for Life.


It was also Pow-wow, which is a celebration of Native American culture, and the Green was busy on Sunday with dancing, booths, and many students and community members celebrating this annual event. (Fun fact: Dartmouth was founded in 1769 to educate Native Americans in the region).


May 092014

The Dartmouth experience revolves a lot around the phrase that I have been told time and time again, “it will be fine.” Up until this point, this has not been an outwardly acceptable way to go about life. But in college, it is greatly applicable. Many people have had exams over the last couple of weeks; the last before final exams. For me, this consisted of two challenging exams Wednesday and Thursday that I felt nearly unprepared for as of last weekend. This ultimately led to a life in the library until the hefty exam period has passed. You’ll fuel yourself with baked goods and coffee from KAF, hoping to make it just an hour at a time. I find it helpful to switch up study spots every day so that I can get a new perspective and to try to catch my brain before it seems hopelessly lost. But as the clock strikes closer to your exam, utter panic may start to seep in. However, most people in your class are in a similar situation. Everyone feels slightly unprepared and as you consult one another, or even your other friends, they will all tell you…”it will be fine!!”

During the end of Winter Term, a mother and daughter walked around Baker handing out flowers to the students who were studying

During the end of Winter Term, a mother and daughter walked around Baker handing out flowers to the students who were studying for finals

I’m not going to try to convince you that grades aren’t important. But, college is a different beast than the high school education.  Your grades may not be flawless. You may never see a 4.0 again, BUT so long as you are taking classes you enjoy, or that one hard class to get to the exciting classes on the other side, “it will be fine!!” Try your best, know that you did as much as you could and enjoy your Dartmouth experience.