My First Year of College

University of Alabama

I can’t believe that I am already sharing my experience from my first year as a college student at the University of Alabama. It feels like just yesterday I was walking the halls of Holy Trinity, preparing myself for the real world. This past year at college has been by far one of the best. I got the chance to meet so many new people and created new friendships, along with embarking on a path towards my degree. For me, freshman year was definitely a learning experience and at times, a bit overwhelming, but nothing that I couldn’t handle. The adjustment to living so far away from home was much easier than I realized. I was prepared, organized and had a great support system which enabled me to transition to college life. Staying in an all girls dorm was great too, especially because it gave me the chance to be around a lot of other girls with similar needs. I always seemed to have someone to study with, eat with or meet up with to go to a football game.

The most important thing that I took from last year was that balance is everything. It’s important to socialize and go out with your new friends, but at the same time, you must be able to maintain focus on your academics. After all, that’s why you’re there. College is the first chance we have as young adults to be on our own and make decisions for ourselves without our parents looking over our every move. However, with that comes more responsibility as students to balance successfully the different things that we want to do and try!

The helpful hint that I recommend to an incoming college freshman is to stay organized. A white board calendar can help you keep yourself in line, and follow classes and due dates. Professors don’t constantly announce when things are due, so it is really important to always be aware of due dates, because in many cases whatever is due may be the only grade for the semester. I believe it’s important to take advantage of every opportunity that your college provides for you. Whether it’s using the library or getting together in groups, it will only help you in the long run! Don’t be afraid to get involved. There are unending lists of things you can do from clubs to Greek life that will keep you busy and involved. Being involved made me feel more in touch with my school and allowed me to meet even more people.

Lastly, remember to have fun! College is one of the best times of your life. Don’t forget to slow down and take a look around. Remember to be thankful for where you are in your life and all of the things that you are working towards.

Best of luck to all who are about to embark on this adventure! It’s very exciting!!

Roll Tide!

Baily Oas ’11

How to Set up iPad Restrictions

Does your child have an iOS device (iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch) or access to your personal device? iOS devices have many security features that parents don’t know about. You can use these features to help protect your child from accessing inappropriate content; guard your personal data on a shared device; and safeguard you from unexpected credit card bills due to unapproved app and itunes purchases. The following video explains how!

Presented by: Susan Bearden, HTEA Director of Information Technology

An Archaeological Dig in Armageddon

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The week after school let out for the summer, I found myself on an airplane bound for Armageddon. Really.  I’ll be teaching a class called “Archaeology and the Bible” this fall, and I thought it might be fun to go on an archaeological dig myself, as well as help prepare me for teaching the course. After a bit of Internet research, I volunteered for the Jezreel Valley Regional Project 2012 (, at East Tel Megiddo. Tel Megiddo, the site of many fierce battles in the Middle East over several thousand years, is also known by its Greek name, “Armageddon.”

Most of my fellow volunteers on the JVRP 2012 dig were college and grad student age, so keeping up with their pace was quite the challenge! We were on the bus at 5am every morning, heading to the dig site at the base of Tel Megiddo to search for more evidence of the “City of the Great Temple Builders” of Megiddo. Most of day, especially in the beginning, was spent pickaxing, shoveling dirt and clay, and carrying buckets of dirt, clay and rock to the waste pile. My lower back was very unhappy. Did I mention that it was very hot?

After removing several layers of dirt from the five meter square we were excavating, we began to see evidence of the city, specifically lots and lots of pottery, and more importantly, the foundations of walls. It’s a pretty cool thing to hold in your hands pieces of pottery from the Early Bronze Age (3000-2200 BCE) that may be as old as 5,000 years old! I found myself spending a lot of time clearing away debris on the wall in my square, and thinking about the everyday lives of the people who had built it. What must a typical day have been like for them?

I managed to return healthy and with all my limbs. All in all, it was a wonderful experience and I have lots of good stories to tell my class this fall!

The Rev. Joy Willard-Williford
Upper School Chaplain

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