Meet Dr. JoAnn Looney

Nyack College School of Education

Friends, I would like you to meet someone this week. Meet Dr. Looney, the Dean of the School of Education at Nyack College. Two words I could use to describe her would be “gracious” and “humble”. We live in a world where sometimes graciousness and humility don’t translate into positions of leadership, but I cannot tell you the countless times where I have walked into Dr. Looney’s office and encountered a gracious humility. She has been a great encouragement to me throughout my years at Nyack College, whether it was listening to my eighteen year-old ideals at freshmen orientation, encouraging … Continue reading

Morning Silence and Scripture

I’m sitting outside on my patio right now. The quiet of an Indiana evening surrounds me. For once, my mind is silent as I lean back in my chair and click my fingers across the keyboard. Silence has been rare lately. It’s so easy to think right now when it’s the quiet of the evening. Prayers come easier. Thoughts are not so tangled. It’s in these moments when I understand why Scripture calls us to “be still”. We’ll drive ourselves crazy with ourselves otherwise. Lately though, I’ve been troubled by a question: How are you supposed to be still in … Continue reading

Unity Among Upper and Lower Classmen

You know something I’ve noticed? It’s something about unity. I’ve noticed something that snaps unity in half, crumbles it out of existence. Unity crumbles when groups form who refuse to associate with each other. Unity falls apart when “us” and “them” becomes the constant conversation. We have something that they don’t have. We are more experienced; they are annoying. We do more work than they do, and on and on goes the beat of our complaint. I’ve watched unity fall apart: at my high school job between different departments, on sports teams, at community events. The “us” and “them” is … Continue reading

Finding Vision

So. I had the idea for this week’s blog while rollerblading in my driveway. Sometimes ideas just come while rollerblading. I thought it would be best to share that piece of trivia with you. Anyway… Right now I’m surrounded by this strange and rather awkward time in life. Graduation is approaching but it’s not here yet, and I am sifting through options, inking out forms, finding programs, and learning to let go of the idea that I can control life. I’m learning to trust, but I’m also finding a direction—finding is the key word. It’s in process. Sometimes God uses … Continue reading

Things To Do in New York City over the Summer Part 4

new york city view

In the final installment of our fun things to do in New York over the Summer series, we’re going to explore all the special “hidden” places that can contribute to an exciting summer. When I was younger, I read a book series about an all girls private school that trained young women to be spies. The girls lived together in a giant house that stood on acres that also housed other buildings that were used for not only their regular schooling but also spy activities. Nearby neighbors and civilians were told and believed that it was a boarding school. In … Continue reading

Getting Ready to Go Back to School

We are weeks away from the start of school. I can already hear the collective sighs of students all over the tri-state area. Thankfully, I am personally very excited for school to start back, but that doesn’t mean that back-to-school commercials and advertisements don’t catch me off guard every year. About 2 weeks ago I was visiting the Forever 21 in Times Square and was shocked (though I really shouldn’t have been considering back-to-school ads on television start earlier and earlier every year) to find a chalk board highlighting their Back to School deals. It was at that moment that … Continue reading

Money Saving Plan for College Students

Were you one of the 156,000 people that got a summer job this year? Summer jobs are nice and convenient because you are able to both stay busy in your off season and make money. It’s truly a win-win situation – except for the working part which can be annoying for some. It’s so tempting to wake up on pay day, see the money in your account, and then proceed to spend every last cent before the next paycheck even sees the light of day. However, this is inadvisable and actually able to be combatted through proper preparation, a money-saving … Continue reading

How to Prepare for Last Semester as an Education Major

I’m writing this blog towards the end of summer and right before my last semester as an education major. The heat is wilting our town, and the blessings of air-conditioning are being praised. These last few weeks are when we begin to shift our focus for returning to school. Whether you are an incoming freshman or a graduating senior, we’re all beginning to make plans for when we return. Depending on what your major is, you may need to begin planning some specific things now. I’m an Education Major going into my final semester of the program. This semester I’ll … Continue reading

A Diverse Friendship


I grew up in Indiana, rural Indiana. It’s the kind of place where people settle, have kids, and before you know it there are four generations tilling vast stretches of corn, beans, and a melon patch. People live close to the earth and close to family here. Growing up, there wasn’t a lot of diversity in my town, only because that was simply the makeup of the place. There were a few immigrants from South American countries, but in high school I only had one Latino friend. Now there are immigrants from Burma, Thailand, India, and other places who have … Continue reading

Things To Do in New York City over the Summer Part 3


In part 3 of our list of fun things to do in New York City over Summer break, we’re talking about cultural institutions and the like. The amount of cultural institutions in New York is endless and museums are a big part of it. Some of the more popular ones are: the Metropolitan Museum of Art (a.k.a. the Met. Heard of it?), the Museum of Jewish Heritage, The Cloisters (a branch of the Met), the Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), the Paley Center for Media, Parsons The New School for Design Gallery, and the American Museum of … Continue reading

Things to Do in New York City over the Summer Part 2: Eating

In honor of summer and the endless amount of things both Rockland and New York City campus students can do to ring in the season, I decided to do a series on fun ways to spend your summer break in New York. Part 1 explored the beaches in New York and the second point on our New York City Summer list is… drumroll please… food! In part 1 of this series, I mentioned how Long Beach has a superb collection of food trucks affectionately named Shoregasboard – a name derived from smoregasbord. A smoregasbord is a buffet style meal with … Continue reading

20 Ways to Be Grateful in All Things


Friends, In the last blog, I wrote to you in a confessional sort of way. I shared that one of our generation’s specific struggles seems to be that we tend to wander into a lifestyle of complaint. In my last blog, I shared an instance where conviction made me realize that I was struggling too. But… It’s not enough to write down a catalog of our problems. It’s not enough to talk, to comment, shut our computers down, and walk away. We must do something– We must be something different. Father, make us something different. I’ve been thinking during the … Continue reading

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