Saturday, April 30, 2011

Don's Blogging Tutorial ~ Josephine's Perspective

Today’s mandatory blogging tutorial was held at the Hercules Public Library at 10:15 AM. Contrary to my usual habit of being 10 minutes late, I was actually there about five minutes early. Thank goodness I arrived early too: I was in need of a laptop to borrow, and because Don’s laptop loans were given on a first-come first-serve basis, I got to use the big Dell one!

Before the actual tutorial session started, all the students introduced themselves, complete with their names, schools, and which Ivy League School they were attending. There was a girl (whose name I regretfully forgot) who was part of the Hotel Management program at Cornell, which I found really interesting because I never knew of such course being offered and it sounded really fun. Nevertheless, rest assured that Brown’s Women and Leadership program was well-represented by yours truly, as well as my good friend Cynthia Yip!

Don started off the tutorial by handing each student a 27-page packet full of notes that he planned on discussing throughout the session. He conveniently followed each section exactly as seen on the agenda page, which made me wonder if he rehearsed his presentation or if he was just plain lucky enough to have remembered every one of the 37 subjects listed on the agenda. Don basically went through what he expected to see on our blogs, such as specific justification (page alignments), acceptable font sizes, photo formats, and proper titles. The tutorial wasn’t limited to the “how-to’s” of blogging, as Don also stressed the importance of responsibility and maturity as we embark on our journeys to the East Coast. He reminded us to check our emails daily, dress appropriately, watch our manners, and act like the adults that we’re seen as.

One thing that really stood out to me was Don’s use of actual “what-not-to-do” examples. He used real-life examples of students’ errors, such as one girl’s mistake of publicly blogging about having her period during the trip. Another student took a flight back home soon after arrival onto the East Coast, due to a bad case of being home sick. That student’s flaw was the fact that he or she didn’t bother to tell the chaperone, Don, or anyone else, thus causing the police to get involved in a massive search. Upon hearing these stories, I promised myself not to do anything that Don could possibly use as a future example of student bloopers.

The tutorial ended a little earlier than expected. Don’s presentation was great, as his information was well-detailed without being full of rambling. Not only do I feel even more excited about this study trip to Brown, but I also feel better prepared. Kudos to you, Mr. Gosney, and to my fellow readers and cohorts, you’ll definitely be hearing again from me soon!

1 comment:

  1. Josephine,

    Thanks for the kind words about the tutorial.

    For the record, the reason I was able to follow the agenda listed on your front page was that I had my own set of notes to follow so I wouldn't get lost. Even in my prime I wasn't that good and I'm far from being in my prime.

    I never want to embarrass a person when they make a mistake but if their mistakes can be used to help others keep from going down the same path then using that mistake as a bad example can be a good thing. I had an old boss (who happened to be my father) who often told me that no one was so useless that he couldn't be used as a bad example.

    I hope you took note, Josephine, that whenever I gave you an example of something from the past in the hopes that you all wouldn't make the same mistakes that at no time were you ever told who made that mistake, where they went to high school or which college or program they attended. All of that was irrelevant to the point being made and it would have been cruel and pointless to tell you all.

    I'm optimistic that even if only a small fraction of what we talked about sticks, it will help and be of benefit to you.


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