Monthly Archives: December 2011

SkidMolly: I’m On Winter Break!

Owing to a luxurious winter break (December 21st to January 18th for me — no classes, no reading, no tests, no nuthin’) I’ll be posting a little less frequently on Ye Olde Skidmore Blogge.  Once I get through a slew of family visits and catching up with friends over fondue, I’ll be back to it.  In the meantime, why not take a stroll through the archives?  It’s my treat: these links below are a one-stop shop for all your college needs.

Sample some examples of the Skidmore motto, Creative Thought Matters.

Check out a couple of the performances at Zankel this past semester: Atlas Sound and Beatlemore Skidmania.

Learn about what it’s like to be an English major.

While you’re at it, see what the French classes are like too.

Here’s a recap of Halloween at Skidmore in all its glory.

Unsure of what to bring to college?  I have a few ideas for you.

Artist Whiting Tennis and writer/editor Caroline Busta gave great talks at the Tang Museum.

Take a tour through the on-campus housing options and see what it’s like to live at Skidmore.

Stay tuned for some brand spanking new content in the next week or so!

CTM: Winter at Skidmore

Brrr!  It was actually really cold out yesterday, cold enough to wear like four sweaters for the brief walk between my apartment and Case Center.  Cold enough to break out the thermal socks!  I actually like winter at Skidmore — frigid conditions make any warm indoor area feel heavenly in comparison.  Another winter bonus: the good folks at Skid have put together a little holiday slideshow, and it’s heartwarming enough to combat the stress of finals and saying goodbye to good friends for winter break.


Ten more reasons to love Skidmore during the cold months:

  1. Covered walkways that connect the art studio, the library, the student center, d-hall and a few residence halls.  They help keep the snow out of your hair at the very least.
  2. The annual Saratoga Chowderfest, when downtown restaurants offer samples of their own signature chowders.  Chorizo and blue tortilla corn chowder?  Spicy bacon clam chowder?  Yee yee.  Mark your calendars for February 2012!
  3. SGA usually hosts some kind of winter carnival with hot chocolate, games, fun stuff, yadda yadda yadda.
  4. There are a ton of lectures, concerts, a capella jams, and movie screenings to distract us from the fact that it’s four degrees outside.
  5. The Snow Sports club arranges carpools to nearby mountains for ski and snowboarding trips.
  6. Don’t worry about slipping and falling on the ice on your way to an apartment party…there are hefty buckets full of salt stationed strategically around campus, so slippery sidewalks are rare indeed.
  7. D-hall has enough comfort food to obliterate Seasonal Affective Disorder; they serve a full-on Thanksgiving dins (turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce) every two weeks.
  8. Winter brings two fun fashion events: the Element Fashion Show, which involves vintage, recycled and repurposed clothing designed by students, and the Ujima Fashion Show, an event created by Skidmore’s African/African-American/Caribbean awareness club.
  9. You can go ice skating at the Saratoga City rink, or just watch a Skidmore hockey game.
  10. Winter does end…eventually!

I was just accepted to Skidmore and cannot wait for the fall! What are five things that are absolutely necessary to bring for my dorm?

Congratulations! It is SUCH a good feeling knowing you’ve gotten into college! (Especially a college like Skidmore, hehe.) So I’ve actually already written about ten things to bring to school (check out that post here); lucky for you I’ve thought of five more.

1) SNACKS. I can’t believe I didn’t put this one in my last list. The dining hall is great, and having an unlimited meal plan (everyone who lives in the res halls automatically has one) will undoubtedly satisfy all your hunger needs, what with Sunday Sundaes and sushi and the vast amounts of pasta at the pasta station….but sometimes you’re in your room, you’re starving, and you don’t feel like putting on pants and walking to d-hall. Solution: snackies. Trail mix, Goldfish, Ding-Dongs, Oatmeal Cream Pies. You will never regret having snacks on hand.

2) SHOWER SHOES. The bathrooms are communal but not absurdly so; living in suites (usually a triple and two singles, sometimes two triples and two singles) means at most you’ll be sharing a (single-sex) (or gender neutral) bathroom with 7 other people. So the shower situation isn’t so bad, but bringing flip-flops or some other variety of shower shoe will probably ease your mind.

3) HEADPHONES. Chances are you’ll be in a triple, which means there are two other ladies or gents who have wants and needs and all that good stuff. Noise and noise control are usually the biggest issues with three people living in a small space. You can avoid some of that by listening to your favorite Britney Spears or Metallica album with headphones instead of blasting it on a stereo. Blissful silence for your roommates, sweet tunes for you.

4) ORGANIZING DEVICES. You’re probably going to end up overpacking for your first year, so make sure to bring things that will organize and sort your clothes and doodads. Stacking clothes hangers, dual-compartment laundry baskets, file folders, under-the-bed boxes: whatever it takes to stay semi-organized so that A) you don’t have to worry about where stuff is and B) your room will be a sparklingly clean machine.

5) BAND-AIDS. Yeah, you can buy these at the Skid Shop, but it won’t hurt to bring a big box from home. Because, let’s face it, the risk of injury in your first year of college is high. You might scrape your knee walking to an off-campus party, or cut yourself while carving a wood block in printmaking class, or slice your finger open while loading band equipment. (These are actually real examples!) Bring Band-Aids and have some peace of mind when it comes to the scrapes and bumps of freshman year.

Hope this helped. Congrats again and keep on asking them questions!

Ask me anything

SkidMolly: The Ins and Outs of Work-Study

Greetings earthlings.  I write to you in a very good mood, having just turned in the last paper of the semester — two exams and I’ll be 7/8ths finished with college.  Occasionally I’ll think of a question that you prospective students might have, and I’ll try to pre-emptively answer the question so you don’t have to go all the way to my Formspring box and ask it.  That’s right — I’m trying to READ YA MINDS.  Spooky.  So here’s some basic information on work-study, that hallowed institution intended to get some cold, hard cash into student wallets.


When I first saw my financial aid package included a work-study agreement, I didn’t understand what work-study was.  I thought it was some baroque way of slowly funneling minimum wage paychecks to help pay tuition or room and board.  Nope!  At Skidmore, the money you make from work-study goes straight to you and is meant to cover the extra costs not included right on the bill: textbooks, art supplies, travel costs, doing your stinky laundry.  Working at an on-campus job means having a little extra cash for all the predictable and unforeseen costs of going to college.  Plus, you can receive your money by direct-deposit into your checking account, or it can be put on your Skid Card payroll.


If you are a first-year student who got a work-study agreement as part of your financial aid package, you can pretty much expect to work in the dining hall or another dining services location for your first.  It’s not so bad, and if you’ve ever worked a food service job before, it’s actually easy as pie in comparison — easy as a slice of d-hall blueberry pie.  Jobs include making sandwiches in the deli station, swiping people into d-hall, selling coffee at the Burgess Café, washing dishes, flipping burgers, you get the idea.  It might feel like drudgery, especially in comparison with all the cool academic and social stuff you’ll be doing, but don’t fret.  It is as fun as you make it.  I loved working at the deli station because it meant I could interact with dozens of people without having to move!  Like speed-dating, except not!  And now I pride myself on my sandwich-making abilities.


Well, you can’t work as a professor…I hear you probably need a PhD to do that.  But the job opportunities really open up after freshman year: you can work as a tour guide/student ambassador in Admissions, an office assistant in Career Services, in the box office of Zankel, as a TA for a studio art class, as a student caller for the Annual Fund…anything goes.  You search for job opportunities on the Skidmore site, apply, and start working.  Simple as that.  I started as an Admissions ambassador, giving tours to prospective students and parents (thus mastering the art of walking backwards) and filing paperwork in the office.  Then once I became an RA, I chose to start working as an office assistant in the Res Life Office, doing administrative tasks, researching other schools’ residential life policies, and occasionally wrestling with a paper shredder.  (I still work there, too.)  And blogging for Skidmore is my latest employment experience…needless to say, it’s grand as sand.  So there’s a lot you can do to make money at Skidmore, and because they know your first priority is being a student, on-campus employers are really flexible with class schedules and other concerns.


I happen to get financial aid, so my work-study experiences have been from that end, but you can also find student employment at Skidmore without receiving financial aid.  Money for everyone!  Dollars raining from the sky!

Hope this gives you a good picture of what work-study and student employment are like here.  If you have questions about this or any other subject, ask me!  And a little bird (aka the WhySkidmore Twitter) told me Skidmore will send out Early Decision I decisions this week.  A big hearty good luck to everyone — please, please, tell me if you got in so I can say hello and congratulations!



My brother will be starting on campus this January. I want to get him gift certificates to local hangouts. Any suggestions?

How exciting for him! There are a lot of popular off-campus spots to eat, drink, study, and hang out. Uncommon Grounds is a good one; it’s a cozy coffee shop with squishy leather chairs and a gigantic selection of bagels. You can stay all day doing work (free wi-fi!) and they won’t bug you to leave.

Another choice is Putnam Market — it’s not so much of a hangout as a miniature grocery store, but in addition to making some of the best sandwiches in Saratoga Springs (being a bit pricey, they might be enjoyed more if purchased with a gift certificate) Putnam has so many cute snacks, cupcakes, gourmet goodies and even containers of soup you can take home. Good for buying a meal or a snack when you get sick of the dining hall.

Finally, one of my favorite places in town is Virgil’s House on Henry St. They make a mean latte and have grilled cheese "sammiches" on the menu. Plus you aren’t allowed to use electronic devices in Virgil’s, so it’s a great place to actually talk to your friends, go on a date, or play a board game. Super cute and very affordable too.

Hope this helps!

Ask me anything

CTM: Skidmore Student Market

Today is a fabulous day for three reasons: it’s the last day of classes for the semester (WOOOO!), it’s Friday (WOOO-WOOO!) and it’s Skidmore Student Market Day.  Two seniors, Katie Humphreys and Alex Maddalena, devised the Market as a collaboration between the radio station, WSPN, and the studio art club, PROARTS.  Since its first go-round back in October it has bloomed into a full-on Friday extravaganza of arts, crafts, vintage clothes and baked goods.


Nick Mittelstead ’12 — the Artist Formerly Known as Prints.

The market is a sweet opportunity for Skid kids to sell their goods and make some pocket change.  Skidmore is home to a heck of a lot of art students, jewelry makers, knitters, crocheters, bakers and candlestick makers, so there were a lot of interesting doodads up for sale.  One student sold hand-beaded hair accessories.  There were a few miniature thrift stores offering everything from fluffy pink sweaters to one particularly fabuous beaded flapper dress.  Hot cider was up for grabs, as were a plethora of holiday-flavored biscotti from Caitlin Allen ’12, who this year started her own cookie business.  I sampled a scrumptious Peppermint White Chocolate Chip.  Sooo good.


Caitlin, holding down the fort at the Cait’s Cookies table.

I also snagged a couple of Christmas gifts and got a peek at the Skidmore Spur, the annual nude calendar.  Yeah, that’s right.  Skidmore’s illustrious Photo Club snaps 12 different clubs ‘n’ organizations, all completely in the buff (with some creative cover-ups).  And the proceeds go to charity!  This year’s effort is a masterpiece, and that’s the naked truth.  Pun intended.


Students millin’ around at the Market. (Hey, is that Reg?)

Chatting it up, selling cool earrings.


Evan Cohen '12 takes a break from art-selling to munch on a Cait's Cookie.

A good time was (presumably) had by all.  If you’re touring Skidmore on a Friday, make sure to check out the student wares in Case Center!

Skidinternet: Cool Skid Kids on the Blogosphere

As we all know by now, Skidmore College and the internet are both things that exist.  Occasionally they intersect, and that’s when good things happen.  Here’s a few Skid kids who blog about things that often relate to Skidmore:

KeithListensToMusic: In his spare time, this neuroscience major and Photo Club president blogs about sweet tunes.  If you don’t know what “math rock” is, just read/listen to a couple pages of his blog and you will most definitely find out.  Sometimes Keith gives a nod to Skidmore’s own musical wizards, like the band Slim Charles, whom he writes “has some of the best use of distortion I’ve heard in math rock in a while.”  Wait, you STILL don’t know what math rock is?  C’mon dude, click the link.

Caroline, A Broad: This young lady is my homegirl and housemate, so I may be biased, but Caroline’s abroad-blog-turned-everyday-blog contains some lovely insights on college life.  On Halloween at college: “We discussed our costumes in terms of tiers.  Thursday was third-tier, Friday night was second-tier, and Saturday was top-tier.  Sunday? A day of recovery, dressed up in nothing but pajamas and surrounded by textbooks.”  She often posts relics from her time abroad (get it, abroad, a broad?) in Copenhagen, like this picture of a photo shop/café where you can drink coffee while you wait for your pictures to develop.  O, Europe.

The Skidtorialist: They’ve taken a bit of a hiatus, but the ladies who run this blog sneak around Skidmore’s campus looking for fashionable lads and lasses in the same manner as street style photographers like, well, the Sartorialist.  A brief stroll through the archives reveals that Skid students are a stylish bunch, capable of hunting through boutiques and sample sales as well as Salvation Army and your grandmother’s garbage can.  One student said of her orange fluorescent chapeau, “If you want this hat you can get it at Farm ‘N’ Fleet in Platteville, Wisconsin for 99 cents.  It’s a bargain, that’s for sure.”  Also, you’ll certainly see many examples of the winter boots on parade during the winter months:

Lots of Skidmore groups and clubs do a bit of blogging as well: SEC, Lively Lucy’s (the people who organize Thursday open mic nights), the Skid Shop and WSPN Skidmore radio; plus there’s Skidmore Unofficial, which, along with compiling campus news and events, never fails to give a pleasantly sarcastic look at Skidmore goings-on.  Skidmore: we’re here, we’re weird, and we’re on the interwebs.

Where’s the best place in your hometown to get a great burger or milkshake?

If by "hometown" you mean "college town," well, there are several good places in Saratoga Springs to snag a good burger. There’s a Five Guys in nearby Wilton (get a friend with a car to drive you, or take the 472 bus) that has the most delicious burgers in the land. It’s all about the Little Cheeseburger with grilled onions and BBQ sauce. And the Little Cheeseburger is not little. It is quite large. A perfect burger to scarf before embarking on various weekend shenanigans.

If you want a FANCY burger, might I suggest Sperry’s on Caroline? They have this insane Kobe steak burger that comes with shoestring fries. Sperry’s is definitely a bougie place — what normal people call "side dishes" they call "accoutrements for the table" — so make your parents take you on Celebration Weekend, or jump in someone else’s parents’ car and make them take you. You gotta do what you gotta do.

Runner-up burger goes to anything at the Stadium Café. Solid burger material, but there are a lot of televisions in there and you don’t want to get distracted from…you know…eating.

Milkshakes? Hmm. Skip the milkshakes and get a bubble tea at Plum Dandy. They have many flavors. Chai is the best. Mmm, tapioca pearls…

Ask me anything

SkidMolly: Ten Ways Creative Thought Matters, All the Time

Below is a quick list of recent and less recent Skid phenomena that have all proved our motto, Creative Thought Matters, isn’t just a saying — it happens every day.

1) My Shakespeare professor is holding his once-a-semester Culture Day this week.  He’s going to play the violin for us.  Personal violin concert from Victor Cahn?  Super-CTM.

2) One of my writing professors, Steve Stern, had his most recent novel serialized in Tablet, a online magazine about Jewish culture.  It involves a rabbi frozen in a block of ice for hundreds of years.

3) When it snows here, people really take the concept of CTM to the next level; they make insane snow sculptures and sled down the roof of the Tang museum.

4) Two of my friends, Phoebe and Alec, recently curated an art show in the Zankel Music Center.  They managed the student art submissions, compiled a catalog of the exhibition, and orchestrated an opening complete with a jazz band playing in the elevator.

5) There’s a lot of food variety in d-hall, but I’ve seen people do some crazy Top Chef stuff to really liven up their meals: making fried rice on the do-it-yourself grill, stirring up chocolate-peanut butter milkshakes, turning sandwiches into salads and vice-versa…CTM with soy sauce and soft serve ice cream, y’all.

6) Last weekend there was a student theatre production called “Cosmicomics”  based on three different Italo Calvino short stories — director Ruth Morrison ’12 adapted the stories into scripts, arranged gorgeous lighting and sets, and generally put together a really well-done show in the JKB theater studio.

7) There’s no dearth of creativity over the holidays here.  On Thursday the Traditions Committee (yes, we have a group dedicated to various kinds of holiday spirit) helped to put on a Tree Lighting Ceremony.  Groups like our wonderful Gospel Choir performed and now the Case Walkway is all lit up, non-denominationally!

8 ) Last year a few people put together this video in reponse to the Planned Parenthood crisis.  Creative, non-apathetic responses to political issues?  Skidmore really stepped up here.

9) Back when I toured Skidmore for the first time, it started to rain right before we left the Admissions building.  I was promptly handed a Skidmore poncho.  If that isn’t CTM raingear, I don’t know what is.

10) On Friday Case Center became the Skidmore Student market; crafty and artistic students sold drawings, stickers, prints, photos, baked goods and more, and 30% of their revenue went to charity.  CTM for a good cause.