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Tag: Chris McCann

Making the most of JYA

Making the most of JYA

For many of us who will be going into our junior years at Vassar, we recently found out that we will be spending at least part of that year in a different country! For me, I’ll be heading to Italy and it’ll be the longest I’ve been both without my family and outside of the United States. If you need some convincing about studying abroad and why I think it’s an invaluable experience, hopefully my blog here will do the…

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Merry Christmas! …or Happy Holidays?

Merry Christmas! …or Happy Holidays?

Merry Christmas! …or happy holidays? I went to Catholic school since Kindergarten, so deciding which to say was never really an issue for me or anyone that I spent a lot of time with. When we left school for what we called Christmas Vacation, there was obviously never an issue with saying “merry Christmas.” I knew that there were all these issues with having employees of public places like stores or coffee shops saying “happy holidays” rather than “merry Christmas,”…

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Are the Rules of Language Meant to Be Broken?

Are the Rules of Language Meant to Be Broken?

My friend told me recently that he had a discussion with his roommate and his roommate’s girlfriend about the different ways in which languages are learned. The roommate learned to speak Spanish at home, while his girlfriend learned to speak Spanish in school. The girlfriend apparently speaks the language more “correctly” and can thoroughly understand the grammar of the language, whereas the roommate has been able to communicate in the way that he learned at home without necessarily being able…

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Reading for Yourself

Reading for Yourself

I was never much of an avid reader when I was young. Like most people, I didn’t like being assigned readings because that almost takes the fun out of fully exploring the realm of imagination that comes with reading. Don’t get me wrong, I could appreciate a good story, but I rarely read for my own entertainment. Most of the times that I tried to read a work of fiction, I would lose interest after only a short while. I…

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Learning Italian Outside of the Classroom

Learning Italian Outside of the Classroom

As someone who’s always been interested in learning another language, I’m glad to finally have the opportunity to do so as a Biology and Italian Studies double major at Vassar. I grew up listening to relatives speaking Italian, and even spoke and understood a good amount for my age (so I’ve been told) because my immigrant grandparents watched my brother and I before we started preschool. Unfortunately, as a result of not hearing and using the language enough when I…

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