Tag Archives: fall

Fall in Athens

Sean Neff

Sean Neff,
Senior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 29 September 2017

Some say the fall leaves in Boston are the sight to see. Yet even though I’m biased, I tend to disagree (rhyme intended).

As the temperature drops and the days get shorter, the weekend exploration in Athens gets even more exciting. One of my favorite parts of going to school here
at Ohio University is the amazing history and scenery of southeast Ohio. The beautiful array of color that covers the hills is something that always stops me on my walks to Stocker Center or the ARC. By the time the weekend rolls around, my itch to explore southeast takes me away from the books and onto the backroads.

One of my favorite places to visit and hike is in Zaleski State Forest just west of Athens in Vinton, County. Zaleski State Forest is home to some of the best hiking trails in Ohio and has a lot of interesting historical places. One of the most frequented places is the Moonville Tunnel, which is an old railroad tunnel that is reportedly home to numerous ghosts. Although I never have seen any ghosts on my trips there, the civil engineer inside of me enjoys examining the
structure of the old tunnel and all of the engineering work that took place for its construction.

Fall semester at OU is also the semester of senior design projects for most civil engineering seniors. For my senior design project, my team and I are designing a complete residential subdivision with roadways, sewers, and lots for homes. The design also includes surveying the topography of a land parcel in Alexandria Township.

Even though senior design takes a lot of my time, the activities and adventure in Athens makes the journey worth it. Just a few hours spent in the wilderness of southeast Ohio takes me away to a time where cars weren’t self-driving and cell phones weren’t the center of our lives. Yet, coming back to school just motivates me even more to create and think outside the box in life!

First Fall in Athens

Nicholas Burton

Nicholas Burton,
Senior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 22 September 2017

4 weeks down, 11 to go. These are the kind of thoughts one like myself experiences at this point in the semester, where the joys of “syllabus week” and early semester fun ends and it becomes time to buckle down for the first round of exams.

Ohio State’s loss to Oklahoma has brought some sour feelings to the beginning of the best season in the world, but with that being said, I am really enjoying my first true fall semester in Athens. Last year at this time, I was in Cleveland cheering on the Tribe during my co-op at Soils and Material Engineers and the year before, I was at a different school, so finally I am able to be in Athens for a fall semester. I’ve done all I can to be outside and soak up as much of the nice weather that I can, and it’s nice walking to class in the sun rather than getting wind burn in sub-zero temperatures that come with spring semester in Ohio.

I am actually happy to be back at OU and keeping busy with classes. I was able to enjoy the beach all summer working down in Charleston, SC, but I did miss my home state and it’s good to be back (stay tuned for my next blog post to see if this positive attitude remains the same). I like all of my classes so far this semester and I am ready to keep grinding them out every day and learning as much as I can.

Camp Ohio University

Cami Jones

Cami Jones,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 5 September 2017

There’s something beautiful about the Fall season in Ohio that is amplified by living in Athens in the hubbub of campus life. I know that this is an engineering student blog, but let me be sentimental here for a few lines. The first few weeks of the first semester in Athens are fun because you get to meet new friends and together explore what I affectionately deem “Camp Ohio University”.

Local wildlife spotting at Camp Ohio University while walking to a 7:30 am class

The campus has so many hidden gems to find—interesting art, local wildlife, rainbows hidden in fountain spray, surprise performances by the Marching 110, cozy coffee shops (my favorite is named after an animal) and more. Everything is new and as the weeks progress, the forest of trees that fills in campus gains a golden hue as autumn settles in.

Throwback to my first week freshman year, when we enjoyed our downtime by doing yoga in the lobby of Read Hall!

What’s even better, in my opinion, is coming back for subsequent fall semesters. As a returning student, the opening of the semester is no longer about finding your way and meeting new people. It’s about rejoining familiar friends at favorite spots and enjoying local fare together. That’s what this past week has been for me.

We all know that our classes will pick up soon—after all, engineering assignments inevitably end up looking like big puzzles and group projects. However, I have learned to take advantage of the downtime that accompanies the first week of each semester in the “calm before the storm”.

Group projects tend to be more creative and fun when working with friends. Just notice the matching galaxy cat shirts we wore for a team intro video used as a part of our final project in computer simulation!

As the second week of the semester rolls around, I’m preparing to settle into the rhythm of classes and student organization meetings. In other words, it will be back to working on group projects with my friends and planning events for our chapter of the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers. And while I wouldn’t venture to say that these coming weeks will be as relaxing as the first, I know that they will be rewarding in many other ways. Here’s to a final fall semester in Athens!

Fall Motorcycle Rides

Rob Parker

Rob Parker,
Senior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 4 November 2016

Fall is by far my favorite season of the year. The temperature is cooler in the morning and during the day it usually warms to the low 60s. Along with the very comfortable temperature of the outside air, the trees change to beautiful colors. With all that said, there is nothing that clears my mind and gives me a better break from school than motorcycle rides with some of my friends.

There are countless winding roads and destinations outside of the city limits to choose from. One of my favorite rides is to Lake Hope, which is about 17 miles from Athens. The scenery on the way is breath taking. I usually ride with some of my friends that also have motorcycles and I take whoever wants to ride on my back seat as well.

ALT

Discovering what awaits outside of the city limits is quite an experience. There are some rather cool landscapes around the Athens area and I’m sure every student’s experience is different. Having the wind hit my face with my buddies riding next to me cruising by the colorful trees is the best stress reliever that I have found yet.

Starting Fall Semester

Jane Oberhauser

Jane Oberhauser,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 8 September 2016

Fall is a complex time. As time passes and it comes closer to October, I yearn for cool weather and colorful trees. I daydream of long runs on the Athens bike path where I can breathe in fall-scented fresh air and reminisce on my high school cross country days. At the same time, however, I am aware that as time progresses, the many commitments I have will pick up to the point that my “long runs” might only be speed walks to class in the morning.

An exciting part of senior year that just came together is our senior design project assignments. Our class of around 70 students has been split into about 14 teams, each of which have a design project to work on for the next two semesters. I have been really pumped for this, and even more now that I know what my team’s project is.

The projects that always excite me most are those from local project partners, so I was very excited to hear that our team would be working with the Athens Cycle Path Bike Shop to design a human powered bike path cleaner. I’m sure I’ll post more about this design in the future as it comes together.

I’m only beginning to see what this semester will look like. So far, something I see that will separate this semester from the rest is the amount of purpose there is in what I’m doing. Although each of my previous semesters has also had purpose, they were more focused on preparing me and turning me into a competent engineer. Finally, now that I’m on the last level of my undergraduate career, I can feel the training wheels being lifted and I’m ready to roll.

Construction Estimating

Robert Parker

Robert Parker,
Junior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 29 November 2015

The air is becoming cooler and crisper and the days are much shorter. I cannot believe that we are done with November and moving in to the last month of the year. The semester is coming to a close and the project deadlines are approaching. There is nothing more that terrifies me than project deadlines and finals. Even though I am terrified to think of what is in the near future, I am still ready to tackle them head-on. I have found that I work and learn best when I am under a little pressure.

One of my favorite classes of the semester is CE 4160, Construction Estimating & Equipment. In this class, I have been working on roadway construction projects all semester. In this class we are divided up into groups and we are given a set of plan drawings to which we need to make an estimate of how much the project will cost to build. I like this class the most because it is most applicable to what I want to do once I graduate.

Another benefit of this class is that is directly related to one of the organizations that I’m in. The Civil Engineering Estimating Team does exactly what my class is teaching me. We get a set of plan drawings and we need to bid the project during a competition.

I find that I tend to like classes more that I can directly relate to outside of the class room. I am what they call a “hands on” kind of person.

Athens Bike Path

Paige Preske

Paige Preske,
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 3 November 2015

During the fall (and every other month, really), my favorite spot at Ohio University is the bike path. Running right along the Hocking, it’s a beautiful spot for all seasons. This time of year with the changing leaves and a cool breeze, it really is the perfect place.

I initially fell in love with this spot during my freshman year. I lived in Johnson Hall, and the bike path was my favorite spot to walk, run, or catch some quiet time. At the time I kept to the section by South Green and didn’t venture very far past O’Bleness Hospital. This part of the bike path is beautiful–it’s right against the river and you can look across it to see the hilly landscape and changing leaves.

Now, as a senior, I really enjoy the portion of the bike path that runs through West State Street Park. It’s a little quieter and farther removed from the river but it is just as pretty. While I’m on this portion, I find myself at different times:

  • under canopies of trees
  • crossing a bridge over the Hocking River, and
  • passing a small local farm.

Overall, there isn’t a bad place to be find on the bike path and after four years it’s still my favorite spot at Ohio University.