10 Tips to Better Time Management.

It’s an exciting time for our freshmen here at Utica College, branching out from home, making new friends, creating memories, becoming responsible young adults and most importantly (the reason you are here!) to further your education. These next 4 years of your life will be the best and most important. College is a time to explore, try new things and have fun. But don’t forget the reason you are here, to earn a degree to propel you into a career!

Managing your time is going to become a very important part of your daily life. The most important thing to remember is to stay on top of your homework and studies. It’s the reason you are here! Once you fall behind, it becomes difficult to catch up and is going to cause even more stress in your life. Some people are naturally good at remembering all the tasks they need to accomplish and managing the time along with them. However if your more like me and most other people, sometimes this can be difficult when you have many things going on. Time Management has become a huge part of my life. I am a assistant Cross Country/Track coach here at UC, I have a part time job, I spend A LOT of time recruiting potential student athletes, I’m training for my first marathon, I’m starting my thesis for my Master’s degree, I have a friend or two, I’m a blogger and I have two horses. As you can imagine I’m quite busy! Here are my top ten ways I manage my time.

  1. Reminders – any time my boss or some asks me to complete a task I write it down!
  2. To-do list – each day make a list of the things you want/need to accomplish. Prioritize them by the things you need to get done that day, to things that could wait.
  3. Have a calendar with important dates – such as big assignments, social, athletic events. Calendars have become my best friend. When I sit down at my desk in the morning, I can visually see when I have practices, recruits on campus, visiting recruits off campus, cross country meets, work schedules, meetings, etc…
  4. Set aside specific times to get homework done. Sitting around and just thinking I’ll do my homework when I feel like it, is bad! You are more likely to get homework done, if you set aside specific time frames that you plan on doing homework.
  5. Plan accordingly, if you know every Monday night you want to watch American Ninja Warrior, Sunday football, go to wing night. Plan on getting your assignments done before them. Always make homework your priority and reward yourself with your favorite shows and activities.
  6. Plan for distractions – the dorms are always going to be buzzing with friends and people trying to distract you. If you know you are easily distracted by others, plan on going to the library to study or a quiet place.
  7. Do your best to block out social media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, even just simple texts and phone calls are distracting. Hide your phone in your bag and resist the urge to get on social media sites and apps. They are good at sucking you in and you don’t realize it until hours later!
  8. When you have big projects and papers make little goals for them. It is best to start these big assignments early. When you sit down to work on them, make small goals for what you want to accomplish in that sitting.
  9. Make sure to get plenty of sleep and eat a good diet. Nothing ruins your productivity than feeling tired and sluggish because you stayed up all night or you missed a meal and you can’t stop thinking about that grumbling tummy!
  10. Always plan some time for fun! Trying to overload yourself will only cause more stress. Make sure to plan time for relaxing and fun! But of course, not too much!

Managing your time may sound slightly nerdy, but trust me it will make your life so much easier! Don’t forget to utilize the resources available to you on campus such as the writing center, math center, tutors, smartthinking, student services, career center, etc… Have a great semester!


Greece and Romania

What a blast we have been having! I’m currently sitting at a resturant in Bucharest, Romania! We were all sad to leave our friends in Albania. The relationships and friendships we have developed over the 2 weeks were just phenomenal! We were truly treated as family at the Livia Hotel and I can’t wait to go back and visit all of our friends there! From Albania we took a hydrofoil boat to Corfu. I was a little bit nervous about it, but it ended up being a lot of fun! Corfu was beautiful! We spent about two days there and I wish we could have stayed longer. Corfu was a transition time between classes in Albania and Romania. We got to spend time exploring the towns and shops. We found a beautiful beach and spent quite a bit of time there! Our hotel was located between two beautiful citadels. image We then all boarded on our flights to Romania. I think I figured out that I don’t really enjoy flying. I just much prefer my feet firm on the ground. The city of Bucharest is beautiful! It is described as the Paris of the east. We are spending our class time at the Rainer Insitute which has a skull collect of almost 6,800 skulls! One of the biggest collections in Europe and the world! It was fascinating walking into the bone room!  The insitute is about a 20-30 minute walk from our hotel. Our first walk over there a stray dog we named Sporky found us and escorted us all the way to the insitute! She chased after cars and bikers that came near us. She even almost got in a scuffle with another dog that wandered to close. The amazing part that was when we left the insitute a few hours later, she was sitting outside and walked us the entire 30minutes back to the hotel! image We are getting to the part of the course where we are getting to do some research and analyze the bones! Sorry to make you wait so long Aunt Sylvia  for this post:)image


Day in the Life of Forensic’s Field School

You know you are at a forensic science anthropology field school when you are sitting at lunch eating chick with a bone and people start asking strange questions. What bone is it? What is it (chicken) ethnicity? Is there evidence of trauma or disease? Can we analyze it? Other items at the table such as milk bringing up conversations of tuberculosis and brucellosis. Tuesday in our morning class we talked about the process of washing and cleaning bones as well as bagging and labeling. It is very important to keep organized and label everything! Tuesday afternoon we started discussing how to determine the sex of the individual based on morphology, metrical and multivariate statistical methods. We were able to talk a lot about differences in the morphology of the bones between men and women. The pelvis is the most accurate indicator of sex followed closely by the cranium. Long bones are also sexually dimorphic, meaning that there are differences in the bones between men and women. I can’t wait to be able to apply what we’ve learned when we analyze bones!

Wednesday we took a day trip to the city of Gjirokaster to take a look at the ancient citadel, prison block and the city. It was such a neat little town! The citadel was filled with many canons and one tank from World War II. I found it interesting that the tank was made by Fiat! There was also an American plane that sits at the top. It was claimed by the communist that they shot the plane down. However that is untrue and likely that the pilot and crew ejected before the plane crashed. We believe it was a plane used in training flights and had technical difficulties. It was neat to see an old piece of American history sitting at the top of Gjirokaster!

Professor Washburn gave a presentation on the history of Albania which was fascinating as well as confusing. Albania has a very complex history I highly encourage you to read about it! There seems to be a common trend throughout the history of the country being under many different rulers and different forms of governments. There was quite a few shifts in the religion of the country as well. Albania was officially listed as an atheist state for a small period of time! It’s amazing to think that just in 1997 they were consumed in a civil war! This trip so far has been completely fascinating with learning forensic anthropology as well as the culture and history of Albania!

Wifi has not been very strong, unfortunately I won’t be able to post pictures in tonights blog. Hopefully I will be able to get some more posted soon!


Greetings from Albania!

I don’t think people realize how long 8 hours is until you are stuck on a plane for that long! I was extremely nervous for the international flight, but it went really well! The flight was nice and smooth and we were provided with endless amounts of in-flight entertainment! I watched 3:10 to Yuma, countless episodes of The Big Bang Theory and The Blacklist! Played some trivia, wordsearches, colored on my coloring app, solitaire. I attempted to sleep, but it didn’t workout very well. Sleeping while traveling is always a struggle for me. We have a total of 14 students! Only a few of us kind of knew each other, nothing brings a group of people together more than traveling halfway around the world! We have only known each other a few days, but we have had such a blast so far!

We are here in Butrint now! Getting wifi has been extremely tough here! I apologize for the lack of posts! We have now been here for 3 days. The trip from Tirana to Butrint took about 6 hours. We had the pleasure of traveling some unique roads. One was a little nerve racking, climbing the side of a mountain with winding turns and quite a ways to the bottom! The scenery of the Albanian countryside was amazing!!!! It’s absolutely beautiful! I am actually typing this on the lovely beach of Semil, about 2 miles from our hotel. Yesterday was our first day of class, which was held at the acropolis in the national park. Today we went through the bones that comprise the axial and appendicular skeleton. We were able to look at these bones from an individual that died about a 1000 years in Butrint. We are all very excited to have started the class portion and we are looking forward to analyzing and learning as much as we can!

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I am fortunate enough to have one of our professors run with me! We were able to run through Tirana and was able to see some statues and monument in the park. Yesterday we took a ferry across the channel and basically ran through farm fields and countryside! I’m extremely glad to have a running buddy with all the amazing food they have been feeding us!image


Off We Go!

We are finally on our way! It still hasn’t quite hit me that I will spend the next month traveling and studying abroad! I’m currently sitting our chartered bus on our way to JFK. I’ve met a few of our expedition members Paul, Jess, Lea, Kaitlin, and a few of the professors that will be joining us! We are all very excited to get this adventure under way. I will admit that my packing skills are not up to ninja status! Packing was not fun at all! With all the luggage restrictions it was extremely hard to pack everything I wanted. I had to do some serious prioritizing. Hopefully I remembered all the essentials! We should arrive at JFK around 1/1:30 to meet with the rest of the members of the trip! Our flight departs at 5:25pm, we are traveling via Lufthansa #411. If you google our flight number you can track the flight! Make sure to follow me on twitter, I will be posting a lot on there. You can also follow our itinerary online, if you google Utica College Forensic Anthropology Field School! I was so excited this morning that I forgot to eat breakfast, hopefully we will stop soon! I’m still not positive what our Wifi situation will be once we get overseas, but I will try to post as much as possible when we get there!


40 Ways to Keep Ryan Occupied on a Plane

I can’t believe we are leaving in less than a week! I’m getting extremely excited, nervous, and a little anxious. I hope this next week flies by! For those of who that know me, you’ll know that sitting still is not one of my strong suits and neither is flying! Good thing I’ll be spending over 18 hours on a plane over the next few weeks! I’m a little nervous about the flights so I thought it would be a good plan to come up with a bunch of things to keep me occupied and distracted. I am going to try and accomplish as many of the items on the list as possible! I’m really hoping I will have a window seat; it would be amazing to watch the sunset over the ocean! Please feel free to give me some suggestions! 5 days, 17 hours and 49 minutes!!

  1. Color
  2. Listen to music
  3. Word search
  4. Make shapes out of the clouds
  5. Watch the sunset
  6. Watch Frozen
  7. Read a book
  8. Take a nap
  9. Write a blog
  10. Take a deep breath and enjoy the view
  11. Look for whales (Yes, from 30,000ft!)
  12. Take a walk
  13. Play solitaire
  14. Read the Sky Mall Magazine
  15. Download piano app and create a masterpiece
  16. Have a conversation with a planemate
  17. Download and play trivia app
  18. Eat food
  19. …Watch Frozen again
  20. Take pictures
  21. Daydream
  22. Start a journal
  23. Read coursework material
  24. Plan meals I want to cook
  25. Play card games
  26. Find someone to play card games with
  27. Count to 1000
  28. Contemplate life’s mysteries
  29. Try to understand men…
  30. Take another nap
  31. Plan fun summer activities
  32. Play plants vs. zombies
  33. Download paper app and doodle
  34. Get as far into the impossible quiz…as possible
  35. Play Angry Birds
  36. Make friendship bracelets for the track team
  37. Design shirt logo for track team
  38. Watch bridesmaid
  39. Learn how to card count
  40. Try to accomplish this entire list!

Packing like a Ninja!

There are only a few things that I am worried for about this trip 1. Will I be able to run while we are traveling? 2. Am I going to want to leave to come home? And my biggest concern lucky #3. How the heck am I going to pack everything?! Thinking through this we will be gone for 26 days! That’s a lot of stuff…and shoes to fit into a checked bag, a carry on and a book bag! I’ve already started a packing list and needless to say it’s going to be interesting getting there and even more so on the way home! Apart from the many educational opportunities this trip will provide it will also provide the opportunity to learn how to pack like a ninja!

When you think about it there are a lot of items that will accompany me! I will have a variety of clothing for day’s spent outdoors, nice clothing for official events, evening time wear, running clothes, clothes for warm weather, and clothes for cooler/rainy weather. Just imagine all the shoes that go along with those! On top of that there will be toiletries/first aid, laptop, camera, kindle, IPod, chargers, plug adaptors, flashlight, sunscreen, insect repellant, textbooks, notebooks…just a few examples! Packing all of these items is going to be a lot of fun?

One of my college roommates told me that you can fit a lot more clothing if you roll your clothes instead of folding them! With this technique you can lay out multiple items on top of each other and make them into one sushi clothing roll. The theory on why this works is because when you roll the clothes it’s creating less air between the clothing as it would when you fold them individually. Therefore you are wasting less space in your luggage! Another good idea is to make a priority list of items based upon your destination and what you will need there. One thing that is working in my favor is that we will have laundry services available, so we will be able to wash and reuse clothing. I found an article on USA Today that has 10 packing travel tips which are very helpful! I recommend anyone who is traveling take a look at it! Look out for some tweets and pictures in the near future about how my ninja packing is going!! Wish me luck! 18 days, 10 hours and 13 minutes until we depart from Strebel Circle!



Forensic Anthropology Field School!

Hi! My name is Ryan Kelly. I am a graduate student at Utica College. In a few weeks, I will be traveling to Albania, Greece and Romania for our Forensic Anthropology Field School! I am beyond excited for the opportunity to be able to go on this trip, as well as the opportunity to be able to blog my experiences while I am there!

A little bit of background about myself, I grew up in Verona, NY (about 25 minutes from UC). As a young girl I developed a passion for horses; so naturally, I did my undergraduate work at SUNY Cobleskill studying Equine Science/Animal Science. After graduation, I worked at various equine facilities, but I wasn’t quite satisfied with a career in the equine industry. Throughout middle school, high school, college and beyond I have participated in cross country and track. My wonderful aunt informed me that a graduate assistant position as a track and field coach was open at Utica. I immediately applied and was soon hired in August 2012.

When I was first looking into the Masters of Liberal Arts program, I was immediately drawn to the social sciences track. This gave me the opportunity to take classes in an area that I found fascinating. As soon as I looked through the classes, I knew that I wanted to take the Forensic Anthropology, Historical Archaeology, and Forensic Anthropology Field School. I have completed both the Forensic Anthropology and Historical Archaeology classes with Dr. Crist! I am so excited to be able to embark on this one of a kind adventure! Our trip will include unique and exciting learning experiences. Not only will we have the chance to explore and learn about other cultures but also we will get to spend time with hands on learning about forensic anthropology, bio-archaeology, handling and recovery of human remains, paleopathology, mass fatality and disaster planning, medical anthropology, heritage tourism, museum exhibits, and Bulkan culture! I have a feeling that this 26 day adventure will be one of the most exciting and educational experiences I’ve ever had! I am so happy to be able to blog my experiences while on this trip. I hope you all enjoy reading this blog! Once I am out in Albania, I will try to post a few times a week with as many pictures as possible! We leave in 26 days, 21 hours and 18 mins!