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Welcome!

Hello there!

My name is Bria and as you can see by the name of this blog, I am from the city of Grenville in Grenada. Where is Grenada? Well it is at the southern most tip of ┬áthe Caribbean islands, right before Trinidad. Since we are part of the Lesser Antilles, we are not know as much as you can say …Puerto Rico, Jamaica or Cuba. But no matter how small the island I am proud to be a Grenadian! I currently live in Los Angeles, California…pretty far away from home you might say, but LA or the City of Angels I like to say is like my second home and I also call myself a native Angeleno!

  • Update currently in Kansas So I may need to change up the name of this blog !

Now as for what this blog will focus on? Well I like to think of it as a way to vent but I got my inspiration from a great novel called ” Americanah” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche , the main character, Ifemelu ‘s blog on her experiences as a Non-American Black inspired me so I may through in some perspectives from that. I also hope to get friends to write their blogs and post them here… Hmmm I don’t know what else to add…

Oh Enjoy this beautiful picture of my hometown Grenville or La Baye as it’s known in French.

Grenville

Imposter Syndrome again?

This will be a short post but I was feeling confident about postion and applying for it, then it came down to not thinking I would get an interview due to the lack of experience….

Okay now I got the interview now I am doubting myself… like why?

My imposter syndrome creeps up again. Telling me that I am not enough. Don’t have the experience or I am not worthy cause simply this is a very elite institution…

When I really want to stay cause I love the people, I love campus and I love the students! I really want to experience campus a bit closer and not far away…. I would take the opportunity if given. There is so much career wise I want to use to my advantage.

How to get over it? My thing is to bring my best self to the interview… although I feel like I cannot do it, I know deep down I can and I am worthy…

That Grenvill Girl signing offf!

An Ode to being a RA

Now this is going to be my written version of the role that propelled me into Higher Education, I will link the original article from the University of Central Florida below!

Being a resident assistant (RA) was not just a job, it was an experience that will last a lifetime.. or eternity..

I remember not liking my experience on my floor in Chaudoin Hall (see one of my old post on this hall ) as a transfer student in an all girls hall. My RA at the time, who eventually recommended me for the position, told me to apply to be an RA. I thought about it but was not sure, then my best friend at the time who had experience being a RA at their community college and always talked about it encouraged me to do it. According to him I had the personality for it? Well it had better be because God knows I hated (and still do) orientation leaders. Well I took it on, applied and went through the process, it was not an easy one I might add but I made it and then I got assigned to a first year community as I requested.

It was not the hall I wanted for sure, Nemec Hall was known as the pet friendly, run-down hall that had fire alarms going off all the time. They also said it was ugly but I found its pod shape unique and basically it aided in me connecting with students and gathering them for programs. But fact was that no one wanted to be there.. and I knowing this, also didn’t. But you ever heard old folks say don’t judge a book by its cover? Yea well I did just that, little did I know that Nemec would become a blessing in disguise.

Training comes, it is long, challenging and grueling but on the bright side there was free food (hey this is how I tried Chick-Fil-A) and I loved my community and peers (well almost all), became best friends with one of my co-RAs for Nemec in another pod to which we heavily programmed together. I chose my shifts wisely and did them dutifully, submitted all necessary work on time, completed logs for rounds on nights I did them and I went to one on one or as my RLC called it Juan on Juans, every other tuesday morning. It was then I expressed to him how I was interested in doing this full time one day and then the rest of the story writes itself.

But one of the biggest things was not the love for the job it was the residents I had. They made the biggest impact on me that some of them will never really know. My first night as a RA I have to deal with a crisis in my hall, that student I was able to support would become one of my favorite residents and best friend and though far apart today I still try to connect with her. I even got through with the quiet ones and the ones that never liked me as well as I supporting the ones who especially loved my presence. I took them to events, got them connected on campus, forced them to APAC meetings, some eventually joining and taking leadership roles in that org or became a RA because of me and my influence on them. I supported them even after I was gone and had a second stint as their RA as sophomores when I became a RA for the apartments area. I learned from them, celebrated their success and even got a graduation gift from them in 2018 (I still have it). Even when I had hiccups with residents who did not like me, I found a way for them to trust me and see that I was on their side (we are always on the student side per student conduct rules). Even though I was their source of support, they found ways to support me too actually, I even had students who I was not directly their RA,but prefer me as their theirs ! How crazy! From late night rides to fire alarms to wondering who messsed up the bathroom (seriously) to someone making too much noise and having a condom shoved under their door, my residents made for a unique experience.

When it came time to leave Nemec Hall (you will have a special place in my heart) and Res Life in general I was sad. I was going for it for grad school but we all know how that turned out. Even though I am in Conduct, I still miss those adventures from Residential Life, I would love to go back into it if I could or got the opportunity to, conduct is great don’t get me wrong but Res Life is my first love and I see the students on both sides, the good and the bad. The dream role would be one that fuses both Reslife and Conduct. But for now I want to switch from Conduct to Reslife and go back and forth till I see a path ahead. I love these two fields dearly and I thank God everyday for the maturity and exposure I received from this. Cheers to my next steps where ever they may lead me !

Original article found here : https://www.ucf.edu/news/an-ode-to-the-ra/?fbclid=IwAR1LsOLqPWxcmZxdmI59THSAt8VKOuoXdNGwDgYhdxs5pCth_PsI8WLk83w

2016 seems so long ago ! RA picture say
The whole team!

That Grenville Girl signing off !

Things that no one tell you about – post grad edition

I may have given some insight to this a few posts ago but since being down with grad school I have been suffering with my mental health alot and coupled with grief from my mother’s death and recently being triggered on this again due to the death of someone close to me, I decided I needed to express how I feel about some things happening with me lately…

  • It is not easy to adjust to a life outside of school : I swear this was easier post undergrad but post grad? I am not sure why it is so darn hard to adjust. As I mentioned before I feel like because there is not much to do educationally I am struggling hard. I never had time before to slow down and explore hobbies so now I just feel weird.
  • It is hard making friends outside of your field: I am so used to being around Higher Ed folks that trying to make friends outside of that is weird, and although I did it in grad school its so much harder now like what the… I have tried to focus my energy with church and it has worked but still there is not anyone in my age group there
  • Keeping old friendships are hard. Moving away I definitely lost out on some old friendships and currently seeing one just falling apart. What do I do? No idea
  • Your mental health just goes down the drain..currently trying to find a therapist and that is hard!
  • Due to me being a bit antisocial, it took me a while to get back into wanting to see or meet new people outside of family and coworkers. I am not sure why but it was so hard to do that.
  • Moving to a new area or area you are not familiar with can take some time to adjust (although I have lived in NYC for a bit and entered the US via here, its been years since I lived here and I barely know the area soooooooo…. )
  • I seem to have these really bad mood swings and I have no idea why.
  • Definitely having some self esteem issues (again) ugh.

Sometimes I wonder does it get easier? I am currently trying to get my life together. I enjoy my work thankfully else I would feel unfulfilled. Trying to be strong but also find ways to channel my energy effectively. I am trying to find a therapist, I did tell my friend I need space from them, I have returned to my blog and going to try reading a bit from now on or find a strategy game. I hope I can find a schedule or keep myself on track and I will try to post more often!

That Grenville Girl signing off

New School Year, Same Zoom Room?

So we know how many universities wanted to open for in-person classes in the Fall right?

Well when I heard this I was definitely not for it. I spoke to my supervisor, who I discussed this concern with and she agreed but this was out of her hands and mine.

Then came vaccine mandates for students and staff. You’d think problem solved right?

Nope!

Delta variant arrives (which btw if we are doing the greek alphabet its Gamma before Delta but that ain’t my business) now some schools are thinking about alternative plans but still going ahead with in-person plans..

Vaccine mandates gave way to court cases from students that detest the rule (I am not sure why, universities usually require students on campus to have certain vaccines, they even want you to be vaccinated to enter the US so why the whole big deal ?) but I digress.

Now Universities are disenrolling students who do not meet vaccination requirements, I even had a student I had to deal with at MIT who was out of compliance… its crazy.. Professors are risking themselves with this and it is crazy… is the university keeping them safe? I saw an old professor of mine from undergrad who I loved, dealing with the downside of in person class when some students had isolation notices… are universities keeping their staff safe? I am glad MIT is willing to work with its staff on how they would like to work in the Fall but have all the loopholes been figured out? I recently saw Rice University was rethinking in person classes and doing the first two weeks remote.. interesting.

My thoughts are that Higher Ed is moving too fast, I understand that not all universities can afford to have their students remote this upcoming Fall but, it seems with restrictions lifting, people are careless and therefore Delta variant of Covid is still dangerous, the virus keeps mutating and if we can’t trust adults to be responsible with Covid then how can we trust our students?

There is already a huge divide with Anti-Vax and Pro-Vax……. Nonsense !

Let’s learn from our mistakes last Fall and be wise about what we are expecting from our students. We are unnecessarily putting ourselves at risk..

That Grenville Girl signing off!

Here is my favorite picture of the Charles River

Feeling unmotivated

Not sure if it was the vacation week two weeks ago that had me hyper last week , but coming back to work this week was horrible…

Now my co worker said she has been feeling unmotivated and I have felt the opposite but not sure why this week it just happened. I haven’t felt like that in a bit so I was a bit worried why.

Now my best friend has had alot going on, which is fine, I get it, we all get have our days, weeks, months whatever . But it was getting to the point that it was getting draining on me to deal with it and I decided to tell them today about it. They took it with a grain of salt obviously but i needed to get it off my chest. It was adding to my bad mood this week and I hated it. Now today got much better for me. My co worker and I got things done with our summer projects and on zoom talking things over. We showed our supervisor our work and they LOVED it andddddddddddddd to put the cherry on the icing, I got accepted to be part of the content advisory committee for ASCA. So damn happy and looking forward to this opportunity to network and develop myself!

Umm my college diploma arrived today though!

That Grenville Girl signing off!

Happy Birthday to me !

Okay well this is a late birthday post but recently I celebrated my 28th (ugh) birthday on Saturday ! Last year during Covid-19 it was hard being away from everyone and being alone so thankfully this year I am home and with Dad . In an unconventional way, I wanted to go to the Bronx Zoo as I was always told about it and if anyone knows me, knows I like sightseeing and an adventure. Tad expensive but so worth it. I have been to small zoos before but this was wayyyyyy bigger and walking wise would help me ALOT.

I get it is a weird thing to do for your birthday but a birthday should be how YOU want to celebrate it and not how it should be. I have weird quirks and interest and sometimes just dinner does not do it. The idea that you have to have this ‘traditional’ birthday is getting to me..

Nothing is wrong with the zoo… I saw families.. couples and all sorts. I am definitely a person that likes to see,explore and learn things. I am looking into getting more photos and doing a photo dump on my photography blog.

Enjoy some photos from the zoo… finding this interest with photography now… maybe I will try to find a class too !

Entrance !
Bathroom pic
Bear bath
Grand Army Plaza
Prospect park lake

Self-care is important !

I have not been writing as much lately (sorry) but I recently celebrated 4 years of having this blog! This used to be the place that I took time to reflect and journal. Lately I am not sure what exactly is wrong but I have been having a difficult time adjusting to life post grad school. I have been working, which gives me something to do, but I miss the feeling of having something substantial in my life. Is this normal? I did not feel like this after undergrad but I am not sure if because there is the feeling of nothing else to achieve, this means that I am stuck. I can’t pinpoint it. I don’t really have friends in NY and I have found it difficult to connect with folks my age.

Going through Gehring Academy this week has been very beneficial in connecting with conduct folks just like me ! Awkward and introverted haha. One of the sessions was about self care and I realized that I really don’t do alot for myself which is crazy! I had a relaxing weekend by my aunt and decided to try it again (she has a dog). I have some time off next week and I want to take time to explore NY a bit as well as relax. Looking for tips!

That Grenville Girl signing off !

Call me by my name… M.S.E

Yes I know this the name of a popular song by Lil Nas X (which btw the video was great) but now you can literally call me by my name..plus M.S.E or M.Ed (I prefer M.S.E)

So I am so sorry that I did not document my ‘What I will miss the most’ Grad school edition. The semester became pretty hard on me and I was not able to relax or have as much time for myself.

My own graduation did not come out as planned. I DID have my hooding ceremony virtually but the general graduation ceremony was a disappointment as I did not get a chance to attend, it was too rainy and got cancelled. The next ceremony I was not able attend it since I was leaving Kansas for NY.

I have been in NY since and just keeping to myself. I am just tired of everything mostly and the ability to relax has given me a peace of mind. I have been taking on lots of projects at work and meeting people and I love it so far!

I hope to post more or try to give the posts that I wanted to pre-graduation… I have found some hobbies for the summer, I am taking up sewing to be able to do my own clothes.

Will try to put some graduation photos below or dedicate posts with those who knows?

That Grenville Girl signing off!

In front of the Campanile

P.S the cap is a dedication to my mother, she never saw me graduate both undergrad and grad school..

Having difficult conversations

In my field, I have difficult conversations with students. It takes alot out of you, but the end goal is that the student is able to see where they went wrong and grow and learn from that.

Never would I have thought that I had to have this with a friend….

The hardest part is you being hurt in the process…

I have recently had to have 3 separate talks with this person and I found that in the process of trying to do this I have too much resentment and anger for how I feel to tolerate what is going on..

I have decided to go take a break from this person (temporarily for like a day or so) in order to gather my thoughts and see how I feel…

I will tell them how I feel when I feel like I have the strenght to want to deal with them/the situation…

I don’t think I deserve to turn to work mode in order to show someone what they do hurts me or has me disappointed…

I also hate the fact that unless I do something drastic this person does not realize what is going on

Like, I know certain people do not pick up on social cues and I get that but are you really that blind??

My worth as a person was not seen until essentially I left and went elsewhere… why ?

I have gone through this too much and I am so DONE!

That Grenville Girl signing out

Countdown to Graduation- Masters edition : Jayhawk Blvd

This is an iconic part of campus. When I just came to KU for Grad Interview Days this was the main street along where the Union was. I had to walk it in the colder than usual temperature that February two years ago. Huffing and puffing I was wondering when we would get to the damn building! We kept passing so many and I was honestly tired with the layers I had. But that didn’t stop me from getting a full view of KU’s campus.

Now I get to KU and began to work in the summer of 2019. Strong hall was located along Jayhawk Blvd. I was not familiar with the building but guess what? I remembered Jayhawk Blvd and how to get there, I walked around taking pictures. I found Strong Hall and was content. Later down the line my first day consisted of walking to the Union. Taking the bus home. Morning meetings with SFL and afternoon tea on Thursdays allowed me to explore the boulevard. Wescoe Beach gave you a great view of everything that passed along the boulevard. Traffic would back up here when classes just got out at 8:45, 9:45 etc. Lunch time with my coworkers made us run across the boulevard and get our crunchy chicken cheddar wraps or simply hang out.

Pre-covid the boulevard was full of students. Winter time the boulevard is covered in snow and sleet. Spring time the tulips bloom near Budig, Strong and Wescoe, beautifying the boulevard. Oh those were the days!

Now,there is nothing, its empty. It’s quite sad honestly….

This is my first time at an institution that had a main street/boulevard go through the campus. KU is really wonderful, and has been a wonderful experience for me. The boulevard marks my introduction to KU and my countdown of things that I will miss the most.

That Grenvill Girl signing off!

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