Results tagged “Lowell” from Hawk Talk - Christian

For the past few days, I have been thinking about my final HawkTalk post for UMass Lowell.  Many questions, such as "What should I say?" and "How should I say it?" filled my head.  With these questions, other thoughts and flashbacks floated in my mind.  I thought about the main purpose of this blog, and my purpose in life.  I thought about my four tremendous years at UMass Lowell and my future.  I thought about my family, my friends, my colleagues, my baseball players, and others who I have interacted with.  I thought about the world we live in - all the good and all the bad.  All of this floated in my head like a crib's hanging mobile.  I'm like the infant lying there, still new to the world around me, looking over the bright objects floating above my head; all I had to do is grab one thing.  So, what should I write about?  What should I grab from this mobile that continues to spin around in a rhythmic matter?

Last night I looked at my mirror and saw a different person.  Who is that person? Who was he four years ago?  Was he a person who was just fresh out of high school?  A naive young man who wanted a girlfriend, has a lot of friends, and just hangs out a lot?  A person who wants a job and make a lot of money?  A person who doesn't know what to do with his life?  A person with no purpose?   I can tell you this:  he was all of that before and now he is someone else.  This person I see in the mirror wants to make a difference in the world, someone who wants to change people's lives for the better, a person who can make goals and aim higher to achieve them.  This person has a set of skills with a vast and vivid knowledge that continues to grow, a gentleman-type of professionalism, and a drive to live that cannot be destroyed.  This person has a caring and loving heart that is bigger than he knows and a personality that will build bridges, not walls.  This person has a purpose in life.  Humbly, this person is me, Christian.

And who should I thank for helping me become a better person and a worthy "top-of-the-line" contributor to society?  I have to thank the University of Massachusetts Lowell, my alma mater.  I have to thank my professors, their teacher aides, the deans, the Chancellor and the administration, the rest of the staff, my blog supervisor, and my blog co-workers.  Most of all, I have to thank my friends and my classmates, who stuck by me through the thick and thin.  Everyone here at the UMass Lowell has taught me many things from the topics set within my major to essential lessons about life.  They have taught me that knowledge does not end at the last page of the textbook; everything around you is a "teachable moment" and a life-worthy learning experience.  With these lessons, I took on UMass Lowell's challenge.  They challenged me to be the best that I can be.  They challenged me to work hard to reach my goals, and to fight in what I believe in.  They challenged me to make a change and to make a difference in the world that we live in.  I can be I am proud to say that I took on the challenge and succeeded; now I'm an UMass Lowell alumnus.   

So can you take on the challenge?  Can you change the person that you are now?  Can you make positive changes?  Can you make a difference?  If you are up for the challenge, UMass Lowell is your answer to overcome that challenge "plus ultra."  You "Gotta Be Here," plain and simple.  This is where dreams are made and met, and where life truly begins.  I can honestly tell you that I am happy with my decision to go to UMass Lowell four years ago.  It was one of the best decisions in my life and I hope it is yours too.

Now I leave you all with this quote:

"We know the future will outlast all of us, but I believe that all of us will live on in the future we make."
- Ted Kennedy (1962-2009)

See you later and thank you,
Christian T.
UML Exercise Physiology Class of 2009



Throughout the summer, I have been getting tons of emails from UMass Lowell News and announcements.  It seems like the university has been very busy. I can tell you that I am very happy to hear about the new changes and additions to my alma mater. 

One major addition to the university is the old Double Tree Hotel a.k.a UMass Lowell Inn and Conference Center.  I've heard about Chancellor Meehan's interest in purchasing the hotel throughout my senior year.  He wanted to buy the hotel so the university would take in more dorm students for the upcoming school year.  To me, it's a great idea.  First of all, who wouldn't want a renovated hotel room as a dorm for a whole year?  Everything is going to be brand new for the hundreds of upper-classmen, honor, and international students who will dorm their in the Fall.  Nice and fresh for the new year, huh?  Second, it's right smack in the middle of Downtown Lowell.  Students can spend more time in the area, like hanging out at coffee shops, heading to the museums, eating at the great restaurants down there, or just plain sitting and enjoying the historical atmosphere of the canals.  Maybe more students would bring new life to the Downtown area and help the already poor economy.

Another major addition is the new UCard.  This new identifcation card will allow you to gain access to parking lots and the recreational center, purchase food from out-of-campus merchants, buy food from Aramark food in campus, and so on.  You can even add money to the card so you don't have to carry cash on you.  It's just like a bank debit card.  It pretty much makes life simplier for UML students - one card for everything!  What make's it better is the protection system that backs the card.  According to the UML website, the card is protected by the "most secure technology available in the market today."  That should give the UML student peace of mind if the card gets stolen. 
There are other plans such as building a new dormitory across the tracks in South Campus, a new parking garage, and more renovations throughout the university.  For freshmen, you should be very excited of the new changes your university is going through.  There is a bright future for the University of Massachusetts Lowell!

- Christian '09

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Driving to and from UMass Lowell was a major part of my college life.  I drove from Malden, MA to Lowell, MA everyday for all of my four years at UML.  The drive from my hometown to the university was a good 40 - 50 minutes, depending on the times that I'm driving (ie. driving 8am vs. 1pm), traffic, and the routes I took.  Planning out my drive was very important for me as a commuter student.  I wanted to avoid night driving, hitting traffic, getting caught up with construction crews on Route 3, and so on.  I also wanted to get home right away so I have enough time to study, do papers, and other school-related stuff. 

All commuters were like this, especially those who live 20+ miles away from UMass Lowell.  Because of our strict planning to get out of Lowell to beat rush hour and our limited time in UML, we all felt that we weren't part of the UML Community.  I bet a lot of commuters felt like this.  The problem with commuters is our lack of discovery, involvement, and spirit.  I first realized this when I got involved with Alpha Lambda Delta in my sophomore year.  To make the most of the college experience, I felt that I have to get involved with what was offered, from sporting events, joining clubs, getting involved with an organization, helping out a professor, or even just plain hanging out in the university with residents and other commuters.  My friends and I have realized that if we get involved in some kind of way, we would finally feel like we're part of the community.  Last year, I started going to hockey games... and now I wish I started watching them when I was a freshmen!  The Riverhawks are an excellent Division 1 hockey team.  Their games are super exciting and... hey, they're nasty!! (And when I say "nasty" that means THE TEAM IS WICKED GOOD).  Also, I started to get involved with Omicron Delta Kappa.  One event I helped out in was "Trick or Treating for the Troops."  That was a blast!  Plus, I get to dress up as a handsome and adventurous Indiana Jones (hehe).  I started to get involved with what was offered and I finally felt like home.

Thumbnail image for Trick or Treat for the troops.JPG  

I regret not spending more time at UMass Lowell.  I wish I was more involved with the community and the organizations I was part of.  I wish I was at more sporting events so I can support our Riverhawk teams.  I finally felt like I was part of UML community at the end of senior year... do not make the same mistake of being a late bloomer.

Get involved as soon as possible!! 
Trust me, those 4 years will fly by faster than you can blink...

Christian Tiongson
UML Alumni, EP '09

Feel free to comment my blog!  If you leave questions, I will answer them!

Okay, what do you think?

Is H1N1, also known as, the Swine Flu, a big deal?  Or is it just an overblown illness that can be easily treated?

As a health student, I'm concerned, especially when two known cases of the H1N1 virus was found in Lowell.  Like all airborne illnesses, it is always good to take as many precautions as possible, even if the "cold" is going around.  These precautions include washing your hands with soap and water (and singing "Happy Birthday" to yourself), sneezing straight into your sleeve instead of your hands, and use alcohol-based hand sanitizers.  Most of all, if you are feeling sick with flu-like symptoms...


...sorry I needed to vent that...

Ever since the Swine Flu took the top shelf of the News, newspapers, and health websites all over the world, I've seen a rise in people taking precautions, especially with my School of Health and Environment buddies.  A few days ago, my friend and I decided to go to Walmart in Drum Hill to buy Purell hand sanitizers so we protect ourselves from "dirty and germy" hands.  My buddy from the Exercise Physiology program was giving everyone a little squirt of Purell to everyone she knows.  My community health buddy said she'll take every chance to wash her hands.  Another said a professor actually passed around a big container of Purell to his/her students as a precautionary prelude to their health lecture.  My best friend locked himself in a closet and told me to stay away from him until this scare is over

So here's my question:  Why do we all of a sudden take these precautions, when we are supposed to do it everyday even without H1N1 in the picture?

In my opinion, we don't think about these precautions unless the situation presents itself, like working in a hospital or collecting money from a customer in a retail store.  Also, we never think about getting sick.  Everyone goes around giving people hugs, kisses (well... not me), and hand shakes without having the thought of getting sick from the other person's germy hands.  Yep, we always have some type of germ on our hands.  And yes, we ALWAYS transport that stuff to each other.  The thing is, are we doing our job everyday to kill those dang germs? 

I guess you can say that the H1N1 is a wake-up call to everyone.  Now everyone is taking every step to stay healthy.  This virus has proven the world that it is lethal and can make anyone from age 0 to 100+ sick no matter how healthy you are or how sick you are.  I believe that we all should be concerned about this, but not to the point where you are going to isolate yourself from the world around us, like the band Oasis who is touring in Venezuela (Story: OASIS Stuck in Hotel Room Because of SWINE (3rd story down)). 

All I have to say is please protect yourself from this virus, and continue on with your everyday routine.  The U.S. government will tell you when it's time to panic... okay, nevermind, you have to decide if you're going to panic or not... they will tell you when it's time to halt your routine and take EXTRA EXTRA precautions like using masks.

If you want more information about this, click on the following links:
- Center of Disease Control: Swine Flu Updates
- MA Department of Health: Swine Flu Updates
- Talk to you doctor
- Go the the Student Health Services in South Campus, which is an awesome place to get info about protecting yourself and the Swine Flu.  The staff is great there!

- Christian

Oh yeah, here's my P.S.: If anyone sneezes around you, don't freak out, especially if that sneezer is allergic to the floating pollen in the air.  It's just allergies, not the Swine.   Just a friendly reminder from a person suffering from allergies. :-)


Okay, I'm just kidding.

I'll still be your friend if you dislike baseball.  If you hate baseball, then there's a possibility...  But I'm told that I'm fair and that I'm a nice guy!

So here we are again.  Back to the old groove.  The baseball season is on its way. 

The Boston Red Sox will have their home opener this Monday at Fenway Park vs. the American League Champions, Tampa Bay Rays.  This will be the first time the team opened their season at home in 7 or so years.  That's a long time, ya know?  It will be the Sox ace Beckett vs. Shields.  I cannot wait to start screaming at the T.V. screen (and oh, you didn't know I was that passionate about my good ol' Sox?!?).  You know that my blog would stink if I don't mention my Sox!

Hey, I have to mention the team I coach too!  Today was my baseball league's tryouts at the city's high school.  According to registrations and my 2008 Roster, only 2 players are coming back this year... you know how much that stinks?  It's ridiculous.  That means I have to pick up 11 new players.  That means I might end up picking up rookies for my team.  That's not too bad actually... When I first coached my Babe Ruth team, I had a bunch of rookies.  At the very end of the season, we won the city championship!  So I'm looking forward to this new challenge.

Tomorrow, I will be attending the Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and College (**takes a deep breath**) Brunch and the Omicron Delta Kappa Induction ceremony.  I'm happy to say that my community service and my good grades helped me get inducted into these two student organizations. 

I'm sorry that my blog is lacking punch today.  I'll blog more about my induction day and about clinicals next week. 

- Christian
My first day back on UMass-Lowell soil was uneventful.  Actually, it was the worst first day of classes I've been experienced.  Figures, it's my last semester as an undergraduate at the campus, too! 

Let's start out with some positive aspects of my first day.  I woke up at a reasonable time that morning, which gave me enough space and time to watch T.V., catch up on the news, take a shower, have a "good" breakfast, and warm-up my car adequately (Sweet).  My drive up to Lowell was also pretty awesome too.  The drive was a good 35 minutes without any hint of traffic, slow downs from state trooper speed traps, or even a splash of icy patches.  Heck, even my trek through the back streets of Lowell was very smooth without any red light stops or construction.  But as soon as I turned into Broadway St. and entered the Riverview lot, my commuter nightmare begun. 

Let's just say that my journey in the parking lot took a good... 45 minutes to find a LEGAL parking space.  First of all, it seems like UML decided to dump all their snow on one corner of the "Big Lot," which eliminated a good 40+ spaces.  Why on Earth did they do that?  They never did that stuff before!  In the past, the crew usually would dump all that snow behind the softball fields, where the temporary overflow lot was.  I guess this time, the university decided to just pile 20ft mounds ON the active parking lot.  With those mounds, many people decided to parallel park next to them like there was no problem narrowing the space to drive.  Also, many people just decided that there were no such thing as parking lines.  I saw people continue to add more "imaginary" spaces, which also obstructed driving.  Come on folks, I know the unverisity screwed up by not removing those mountains of snow before the first day of classes (and the annual first day parking auto-fill), but at least don't be stupid by making driving difficult for that lot.  So basically, driving in that lot was like a Pac-man game without eating ghosts - we're all "Pac-mans" who were hungry for a clean parking space.  Luckily for me (after 45 minutes of car "Pac-man," I found a space in the Mahoney parking lot.  Thank God I gave myself a lot of time that day.

Here's the picture of the snow mounds from the top of the Mahoney parking lot:

Sorry for the crappy picture, but you can tell that those hills are noticable in the picture. 

I wonder where all the new snow will be dumped tomorrow... I hope they plow all that stuff onto the unused overflow lot.  At least get rid of those hills so I (and the rest of the commuter population) won't spend 45 minutes of my life looking for a space.

- Ian

How does it feel to have the last day of classes canceled due to "one of the worst ice storms on record?"

Don't answer, because I'll answer it for you!!!!

It is grrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeatttttttttt!!!!!!!!  Oh man, you have no idea!  My presentation and in-class final was canceled!!  And it's the last day of classes!!!!  All I have left is finals and I'm all set for 2008!  Wooohooo!!

Okay, maybe it wasn't completely great since approximately 500,000 from the Worcester and Merrimack Valley Region lost power.  And you know what stinks even more?  Most of those poor souls won't get their electricity restored until Monday at the earliest.  So that means that there is no lights, no heat, rotten food in the refrigerator, and other negative effects.   My buddy from Worcester told me that since his power won't be restored for the whole weekend, he has to stay over his sister's house until further notice.  I heard it was terrible in the Worcester area.

He sent me a picture of his street during the storm:


Nasty picture, huh?  It looks like it snowed a little, but it's not snow - it's just tons and tons of ice that just piled on top of each other from the heavy rains and the sleet.  With that extra weight, tree branches, power lines, poles, and other stuff fell straight to the ground.  On top of that mess is the black ice.  I just read an article off and one woman died from sliding off black ice.  Her truck dove head on into the Charles River... Thank God I didn't drive around last night when the temperatures dropped below freezing.  I got reports from people at UML that electricity around the city is still pretty much dead too - internet services are down too.  (It makes me wonder if you'll be able to read this blog today).

Okay, this blog is getting a bit depressing (and it's time to bring out the cookies! - it's a Health Care Systems class inside joke)!   Let's talk about a more positive ice event! 

Back tracking five days (December 8) before the ice storm, Omicron Delta Kappa (the Leadership Honor Society) went to the Boston Bruins hockey game vs. the Tampa Bay Lightning.  It is one of our first social events for the organization.  About 20 members, faculty, and their friends headed to Boston to watch the RED HOT Eastern Conference leader Bruins rough up the Lightning 5-3.  I honestly think in the first 10 minutes of the game, the Boston Bruins jumped on top 3-0, giving the fans a show!!! 

I actually recorded the most exciting point of the game through the Flip Camera I borrowed from UML.  Before I drop the link, here is the description:  The bruins are already up with a power play 5 vs. 4.  After failing to score in the first few seconds of the power play, one of the Lightnings were penalized for holding giving the Bruins a 5 vs. 3 man advantage.  In this video, big man Zdeno Chara fires one of his hardest slap shots for the power play goal.  Fun times!

It's on youtube right now:

Well I hope you find warmth during this icy weekend.   Stay relaxed, focused, and mindful during this tough finals week!!!  You're almost done!!  Sprint to the finish with flying colors!!!

Good Luck With Finals,

Hello everyone,

It's been awhile since I talked about my senior year and my thoughts about it.  It's been awhile since I really had a good "vent" on this blog.  I've been long due for a good down-to-earth blog post, so here's my little speech about how things are going for me and senior year.

For the first time ever, I feel like I'm finally getting into the groove of UML and getting really involved with the community.  I know, I know, I'm in my final year as a Riverhawk student, but for some weird reason I'm finally getting used to the way of life as a UML student.  I can't really explain it.  Maybe I feel stress-free this semester.  The past 3 years seems like a tough up hill battle.  It's like climbing up Mt. Everest in subzero temperatures during a blizzard.  But now It seems like the mountain is becoming more of a plateau.  Adaptation to the rough college climate? Maybe.  And now, I'm part of a new student leadership organization - Omicron Delta Kappa.  This group contains the top students/professors/leaders of each major, job, or concentration who has the qualities of a leader.  I feel like I'm finally getting involved with something so great and I'm finally being part of the community.  Yesterday I went to my first UML Riverhawk hockey game, and oh man!  It was a great game!  The R'Hawks destroyed #6 UNH 8-3. 

See, what I'm trying to say is that being a commuter kind of pushes me away from the UML community.  It just seems like we're not involved with anything.  I don't usually stay around campus because it seems like there's nothing to do.  But now that I'm involved, there's tons of things to do around campus, great people to hang out with, etc.  I'm pretty sad that I'm now heading to the end of my UML career... I wish I got more involved with things or be more outgoing when I was a freshmen.  If I was more into the UML community, this last drive to the finish line would be a "Final Hoorah" instead of a "Rookie Celebration."  Oh well...

Another thing that pretty much shocks me is the "speed" of these four years.  These four years is just way too fast to process.  I remember my first day of college... I was sitting on the 3rd row from the right wall looking at the chalkboard around 8am in the morning.  My college writing 1 professor walks in and welcomes us to the university... Now I'm here sitting on my laptop feeling like a freshman again!  Even when this whole experience was like a drag race car going 200mph down a half mile stretch, I seriously had the time of my life.  It is true that people have the time of their life in college.  College changed the way I am for the good, and now I feel like I'm a more established individual.  I have more knowledge, more mature (okay maybe not), and just stronger than what I was before.  I have the greatest friends in the world, who are all from UML. 

Even when I have a good 6-7 months left of my UML career, I'm going to continue to work hard and enjoy what I have left at this university.  Time to create more memories with my best friends and with the rest of the Class of 2009! 

Rock On EPs!!!!!

- Christian  
If you saw a bunch of 20+ year old people walking down the streets in Lowell wearing Halloween costumes, such as a navy sailor, hockey player, or Indiana Jones (which was me), what would you think?  Well, some people would think its just another crazy college stun (like getting free candy/food because college kids are broke).  Fortunately that was not the reason why a bunch of us, my friends, and I went trick or treating near North Campus yesterday.  We went trick or treating to collect candy for care packages that will be sent to soldiers across seas, especially to those in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Basically, we all met around 6:00 on front of Cumnock Hall, then walked as a group up University Ave to hit as many houses as possible.  At first the hunt for candy was slow because there weren't as many houses that were giving out candy.  But as the night went on and our route changed from the main road to side streets, the candy piled up.  I, as the forgetful college student I am, forgot to bring a bag to collect candy, so I had to use all the small number of pockets in my Indiana Jones custome to hold the candy I collected.  Unfortunately, it filled up pretty good and I ended up dumping them all into my buddy's backpack.  At first I thought our bags wouldn't be filled up as much since there weren't that many "candy" houses, but oh boy!  We had a whole hockey bag filled of candy by the end of the night!!!!  And hockey bags are pretty big! 

Trick or Treat for the troops.JPG

I had the privilege to walk with a handful of awesome and caring students and members from various organizations, such as Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK).  It was definitely a great experience and of course tons of fun!  Seriously, when was the last time I dressed up in a costume and went out to go trick or treating?  I can tell you its been awhile since I went door to door asking for candy (... maybe it was more demanding for some good sweets ha ha).  I wish I had done this before!  I'm proud to be part of this event and I hope tons of people will join us next year!!!

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Dr. Indiana Jones signing off,

Christian Indy


BAY.jpg / AP

Who said that Jason Bay was a horrible replacement for Manny Ramirez?  Who said that he'll have the first game jitters?  Who said that the Red Sox will lose some home run power when Manny left? 

Well, if you said those stuff about Jason Bay, you mind as well wear a "Kick Me Sign" behind your back. 

The Red Sox showed the world that they don't give up deep into the game.  The Sox stunned the L.A. Angels with dramatic fashion, 4-1. The Sox didn't seemed like a broken down, injured prone team last night.  J.D. Drew and Mike Lowell "defensively" contributed to the Sox win, although they did not produce any runs or hits last night, which I think is fine with me.  Let me explain:  When was the last time those two had a real hardcore Red Sox game?  And when I say Red Sox game, I don't mean a minor league triple AAA game.  When was the last time they were under the pressure of the nation's eye?  I think they just needed to be broken into their normal baseball lifestyle.  Sure, J.D. Drew and Mike Lowell are "healthy" enough to be on the ALDS roster, but its still pretty obvious that the veterans are still hurting from their injuries.  Despite an offensive "Silent Night," they still were there to back up Lester in one of the young pitcher's greatest performances ever. 

Most of you would've said that Lester didn't pitch his greatest game last night;  he gave up 6 hits and 1 run in his 7.0 inning outing.  But playoff-wise, the rest of his stats are phenomeon!  Okay, let's add in the 1 run he only gave up in 7 innings... his ERA was 0.00 last night, he had 7 strikeouts, and only gave up 1 walk.  That is definitely ace-caliber material right there.  Like what Terry Francona, who is the Sox manager, and the rest of the media have said, Jon Lester is growing before our eyes.  He went from being a "kid" in the clubhouse to Red Sox Nation's future ace.  With all the stuff he went through, he definitely showed the world that he is stronger than any other pitcher in the league.  There is no doubt about that.  Lester has a bright future ahead of him, and nothing... absolutely nothing will stop him!

There were tons of great plays last night like Ellsbury's diving catch to save a base hit, Jon Lester's striking out the side, Papelbon's strong close, Youk's heads-up play in shallow right field to throw up "Vlad Glad," and of course the great Jason Bay hitting a two-run homerun to give the Sox the deciding lead.  Oh man, last night was definitely a game to put in the books!  That game gave me a great feeling about this year.  It felt like old times from the yelling, the high fives, listening to the radio when I wasn't home, wearing my Red Sox gear in World Series fashion, and having my eyes glued to my wide screen T.V. in my family room.  Oh it just felt sooooooo good inside! 

One game down!  Two to go!  Then off to the ALCS!!!!


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