Category Archives: Engineering Technology and Management

What’s Changed in Athens and What’s Unchanged

Allie Gabbard

Allie Gabbard,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 29 March 2020

A lot has changed since my last blog post, especially as far as the environment I now do my work in. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted us all, more than likely, in multiple ways. Little did the Class of 2020 know that the week before Spring break would be our last day of classes on campus. Everything would change. The University would extend spring break by 1 week to allow professors time to transition their classes, all classes would go online, and we as students would have to adjust to a new virtual world.

This has been a big adjustment for me as I am a hands-on learner; that is why I chose ETM as my major. The majority of my classes have moved to Microsoft Teams to host lectures whether they pre-record them or host them as a normal class session. I really enjoy using Teams because we can easily interact with our professor and our classmates still keeping that community feel.

I also think the professors have really done their best to make themselves available as much as possible. I know my professors have an open-door policy; therefore, they have extended that virtually. Anytime, during business hours, you can connect with them over phone, or virtually through teams to get help! I think the faculty have done an amazing job doing whatever they can to support us students.

I have been quarantining at my Athens residence since my return from spring break. This has allowed me the opportunity for quiet space, but to still maintain that Athens feel. For those of you not in Athens I will provide you with some background. Typically, this time of year Athens is filled with students. The first warm day of spring hits and the greens fill with people. On South Beach you’ll see students playing volleyball, picnics, people playing frisbee and so much more. On West Green, students will place speakers in their dorm windows playing music outside. People will tan on the green, throw football, hang in their hammocks between light post, or sit under the cherry blossom trees. For once this is not the case. I can assure you the cherry blossoms are in full bloom because my sinus infection is coming on strong right on time!

Although there is not a lot of life on campus, there are still upperclassmen residing in their off-campus houses. The sound of music bumping from a speaker carries for at least a mile indicating there are people here. It never fails, to take a jog on the bike trail and see other fellow Bobcats doing the same. I can also assure you that the campus “dogs” or the deer are lively and healthy. On my walk yesterday, I passed a record breaking 12 deer all together!

Students, prospective students, alumni, and faculty: although life has changed drastically over this last month, the end is unknown, and negativity continues to spread. I challenge you to reflect and soak in something positive and share that, because I promise someone needs that right now.

I can assure you although the student body is missing from campus, the community, the beauty and the buildings are just waiting for us to return. Not only will the Class of 2020 have a unique celebration, but I am sure opening weekend and homecoming will be bigger than ever so we can celebrate the challenges we have overcome together as Bobcats and celebrate being back together again here at hOUme!

Getting a Break from Stress

Allie Gabbard

Allie Gabbard,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 23 February 2020

College can be a stressful place. In fact, college is a very stressful place. If it was easy, it would not be worth the challenge or the added value that comes with it. So how do students handle the stress of classes, homework assignments, lengthy essays, senior capstone, and working part time?! Well, there are many different ways to cope and I have three favorites: cooking, exercising, and taking the time to spend time with friends.

Cooking can be a guilty pleasure in a way because with cooking, there is food to be eaten. And with excess food sometimes comes emotional eating so you have to be aware of what kind of food you lean towards to cook. I actually tend to eat healthier when I am stressed because I choose things to cook that take concentration. Last night for instance I made chili and a few weeks ago I made vegetable soup.

This is simple cooking, but the preparation is tedious as each ingredient needs measured, and all the vegetables need to be diced. For me, focusing on these each individual task, takes my mind off of school. In turn, I have a good meal which helps keep me focused and prevents me from getting sick.

Another form of de-stressing is simply exercising. I love to run on Ohio University’s campus when it is warm outside, especially in the spring when the cherry blossoms bloom!

Running along the bike trail keeps you on a flat surface but puts you on the outside of campus looking in. There is the beautiful scenery of campus on one side and the Hocking River and hillside filled with trees on the other. This is a great view but puts you outside of campus life without really being off campus. If you do not like running, I encourage you to grab a skateboard, roller-skates, or a bicycle and check it out!

As a senior, I also enjoy taking a jog through campus as a lot of things are changing that I do not get to see every day. My freshman and sophomore year I lived on East Green and commuted to West every morning. Now I walk from West Union to West Green and that is about the extent of my adventures unless I take a stroll to Ping.

Going to WV After Graduation

Adam Kirby

Adam Kirby,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 3 February 2020

I have just started my last semester ever here at Ohio University. It’s a bittersweet time as I find myself talking with first or second year students telling them I wish I was in your shoes and that I could do it all over again.

However, I am eagerly waiting on graduation so I can go out and put all of this hard work and training to good use. I am planning on heading to Morgantown, West Virginia and starting my role as a Manufacturing Engineer. I will always be able to call Ohio University home but I look forward to starting a new journey where I get to experience new and exciting opportunities.

I have already signed a lease in Morgantown which is super exciting. I managed to get a two-bedroom apartment super close to the football stadium so I can continue to enjoy the college sports scene and maybe a touch of college life here and there. I will always be pulling for the Bobcats but now I will have two teams to cheer on during game day.

If I could leave those first and second year students with one thing, it’s to enjoy your time at this amazing school. You will make memories and friends to last a life time. There is truly no other place like our little slice of Appalachia. Enjoy your days, weeks and years and be excited about where the road may take you.

Ohio University Community

Allie Gabbard

Allie Gabbard,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 20 January 2020

Finally, 2020 has arrived. A very interesting year as many chapters in my life are coming to a close. Just prior to winter break, I completed my last Fall Semester of my undergrad. During winter break I completed my last internship, parting ways with many colleagues I have grown to love and gained so much knowledge and experience from. This Spring I will complete my last semester ever, as a college undergrad here at Ohio University. This year brings many new chapters and many new challenges, but there are also some things I’m not ready to give up.

As a tour guide, we do our best to share our experiences with prospective students, but it is truly hard to express the feeling of the community here at Ohio University. Living here in the college town is so much more than going to class, it is the feeling of being at home and taking pride in where you live and who you live around.

As the pages of my college chapters continue to turn day in and day out, I will never be able to prepare myself for leaving this community I have come to call my home. When I arrived on campus for my very first tour, the tour guide kept taking about OU being a home away from home. I personally thought it was cheesy until I went home during my first winter break for the first time in a long time. By the third week of winter break, I could not wait to go back to school because I missed my friends and the community.

Not every university will share the same community, but OU is truly unique. As a prospective student carrying that white Ohio Bobcat Depot bag or the green tour bags, we as current students know exactly what you are here for. More than likely, a current student will stop and offer a helping hand or even just share their experience with you. Never hesitate to stop uptown for lunch because more than likely, your server will talk your ear off about how much they love it here too.

I have never been in a closer community than the one here at OU. Whether it was living in the dorm, student organizations, or just socializing up town, everyone was very friendly and always willing to lend a helping hand. Everyone here is so kind. I do not know if it’s the beautiful scenery, the separation from a large city, or simply just being a Bobcat, but I am really not ready to walk through the alumni gate and just come back from my next chapter just to visit.

The Opportunities from Being an Ambassador

Allie Gabbard

Allie Gabbard,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 9 December 2019

As the semester comes to a close, I want to take a minute to reflect on the wonderful opportunity students have to become an Engineering Ambassador in the Russ College. I encourage any and all students, if presented with a nomination, to pursue this opportunity as it is truly a life changing experience. Being a student ambassador is more than wearing a green polo shirt and giving tours; these students work to recruit and network students, strive to develop professionally across many facets, and participate in community engagement in multiple areas.

Thankfully, I have had the opportunity to not only partake in this wonderful organization, but also serve as their Vice-President. I have had the opportunity to extend my professional development far more than I would have ever imagined. I have had the opportunity to work with two different deans, more than thirty different students from different majors, and lots and lots of alumni. The Bobcat nation is truly fantastic all across the board.

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to travel to Bonita Springs, Florida to meet with the Russ College Board of Visitors. This team is comprised of some fantastic individuals they have set the bar high for OHIO graduates. They are truly an inspiration for all students and it was an honor to meet with them.

During the weekend, Lydia and I had the opportunity to participate in meetings related to the Russ College and business moving forward with the school. The board provides input to the Dean to help guide her down the correct path through their experience in their respective industries. I cannot express my gratitude for having the opportunity to listen and learn. I had some fantastic conversations with some of my new role models moving forward.

Thank you, Engineering Technology and Management, for nominating me for this role. Thank you to the Board of Visitors, Administration and Dean Wei for inviting Lydia and I to listen, learn and provide the perspective of current students. It was an honor to be a part of such an established team and I really look forward to speaking with everyone more in the future.