Summertime is almost here, and one of the best parts of this warm, sunny season for me is the opportunity to get some reading done! Whether it’s outdoors in the sunshine or indoors on the couch, I love a great book. Read on to learn about some books that I’ve read (and loved) in previous summers, and see some of the books on my list for this summer!
Want to know something scary? Twenty-seven percent of Americans did not read a book in the past year. That means that 86.1 million Americans haven’t read a book since the Royals won the 2015 World Series and Adele released her 25 album. What were you all doing?! Rescuing kittens from trees? Curing the Zika virus? Watching videos on Vine? Well, Vine is dead now people, time to expand your brain by cracking open a book. Continue reading “6 books that changed my life”
This year’s common read book for the K-State Book Network is Spare Parts: Four Undocumented Teenagers, One Ugly Robot, and the Battle for the American Dream by Joshua Davis. This true story centers around four undocumented, Latino teenagers living in Phoenix. Inspired by two dedicated teachers and equipped with their own ambition, these four outcasts enter into the Marine Advanced Technology Education Robotics Competition. Their robot, dubbed Stinky by the team, cost under $1,000 to build, and beat the $10,000 ExxonMobil sponsored robot from MIT. Continue reading “Book Review: Spare Parts by Joshua Davis”
Not everyday has to be productive. Sometimes it is beneficial to take a day off and clear your mind. Here are some things you could do on these days. Continue reading “Lazy Day”
With the extra time I’ve had over the past two weeks, I’ve been able to catch up on a favorite pastime: reading. If you’re like me, you may be able to remember – WAY back in “the day” – when you first started to read chapter books. After spending much of your first couple years of school advancing your reading skills, being able to read a full-length, “big kid” book seemed pretty cool – I can remember reading a number book series in elementary school, like the Hardy Boys mystery series, Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, and eventually my all-time favorite series, the Harry Potter novels. While I really enjoyed these books I’ve mentioned, I didn’t always find reading to be enjoyable. Having to get through an assigned number of books each year by my teachers could make it more of a task on my to-do list than an enjoyable activity.
As I’ve entered college at K-State and gotten busier, I feel I’ve been able to rediscover the enjoyment of reading, and not only that, but the importance of reading everyday for enjoyment, to gain knowledge, to keep up on current events, and in order to be renewed. I think it’s especially important to become a passionate reader in college – reading for fun can give my brain a break in the midst of studying and reading an inspirational autobiography of someone I look up to can help me push through when I’m discouraged. Reading even helped me a lot last year as I worked through my academic major change – I found my love for public policy and legal issues through some of the books I’ve read.
If you’re looking for some books to try out, one genre of reading material in particular has consistently stood out to me: I’m a big fan of a leadership and self-development books. This spring, as a part of Blue Key Senior Honorary, I’ll be teaching a course for freshmen and sophomores called Catalyst. In the self-development training class, we’ll discuss three books, all of which I’ve enjoyed reading so far on Winter Break: How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie, The Other 90% by Robert K. Cooper, and Habitudes by Tim Elmore. Elmore’s book in particular is intriguing – he believes that leadership is best taught using images, so as a visual learner, it’s fun to “re-live my childhood” by learning leadership through the images in his book. Elmore will be coming to campus in February to give a presentation to the student body, and I’m excited to hear more from an author I’ve really come to respect.
Reading – whether it be the news, an enjoyable book, or simply my Twitter feed (I find myself doing this last one A LOT) – can be a great break from the busyness of college. K-State has taught me the importance of being a lifelong learner, and reading is the single best way I know of to learn.
So much for being able to catch my breath! I’ve been sooo busy ever since I got back from Winter Break. I’ve already written a few papers, moved rooms and settled in at the house, bought all my books and materials for school, given a couple speeches in Honors Public Speaking, applied for like a hundred clubs and scholarships, had a few quizzes and a test, been to an awesome date party (see below), cheered on the Cats in the Octagon of Doom a few times, fulfilled a some of my duties as the External Philanthropy Chairman of my house, attended several meetings including one with Dr. Bosco, started a few big group projects for classes, planned my Spring Break trip to Colorado, caught up on my laundry and shopping, eaten Jimmy John’s waaay too many times, made a bunch of new friends, managed to sleep for a few hours every once in a while, and I’m about to be initiated into my house! – Just to name a few things….
The KU game is coming up this Monday; I can’t wait to be there, and Valentines Day is the day after that! Not to mention, I’ve got a never ending to-do list of upcoming events, tests, and responsibilities. It’s looking like I’m going to have another super busy semester, but I’m still having the time of my life!
My Girlfriend and I looking nerdy at the “Back to School” Date Party