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Meet your Senior Commencement speakers!

As you may know, Brown University proudly upholds the tradition of electing two members of the graduating class to address the crowd of eager graduates rather than hiring a Commencement speaker from outside of the Brown community.

Many members of the Class of 2015 anonymously sent excerpts and ideas for a commencement speech to a ten-person committee, comprised of Deans McSharry and Rodriguez, four seniors (chosen by those deans), and four faculty members (including Professor Barbara Tannenbaum of the famed Persuasive Communication course). The committee selected about 10 finalist proposals, whose writers were given recommendations and asked to flesh out and perform their entire speech. Based on those performances, the committee selected the two commencement speakers. Introducing…

Michelle Bailhe ’15 and Lucas Johnson ’15

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Michelle Bailhe
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Concentration: Human Biology
Freshman Unit: Morris (Unit 19?) 4th floor
Most Likely to be Found: Morning: Scili basement, Afternoon: Carrels of the Rock, Night: Dance studio

Lucas Johnson
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Concentration: Education
Freshman Unit: Champlin 3rd floor, (s/o to Champlin Cheetahs, Christian Petroske, the 3rd and 4th floors)
Most Likely to be Found: Lurking around the Blue Room attempting to get his friends who are on meal plan to buy him something. At night, in the SciLi basement photoshopping absurd self-referential photos with his friends in order to avoid doing work.

BlogDailyHerald: Did you two know each other before being selected as the commencement speakers?

Michelle: No, but we have a mutual friend. Several actually. My friend who dances with me is living with him next year, but somehow we never met.

Lucas: It’s very strange, the overlap was astounding in retrospect.

BlogDHWhat motivated you to apply to be a speaker? Do either of you have public speaking experience?

Lucas: I didn’t expect to get nominated, I didn’t nominate myself, and I still don’t really know who nominated me. I just thought that it would be a very helpful exercise in reflecting over the past couple of years. And I thought, well, okay, someone felt that I had something important to say. So I took a lot of time processing that, and actually was very close to not submitting anything because trying to sum up four years in a couple of pages is really stressful. But I decided to give it a shot, and now I’m here.

Michelle: I remember the speeches that came out the year that we got into Brown, the 2011 speeches. I was still questioning my decision to come to Brown, and somewhat nervous about it. I remember Vivi Tran’s speech, “An Education in Altruism,” and that was the first time that I felt 100% that I had picked the perfect place and people for me. I wanted to be able to do something similar, and I think the fear of not being able to sum up four years in two pages definitely stopped me at first, but I realized it didn’t have to be that, and it could just be a “slice” of an experience that hopefully resonated with people. That became much easier to write.

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Art School(ed): Collection 2015, RISD Apparel’s annual runway show

A look by Ka Brianna Lee

 

The first thing to notice when attending a RISD Apparel Department Runway show is the decorum of the Providence Performing Arts Center. From the lobby’s archway to the exquisite mixture of red and gold that colors the entire space, the Center – once known as the Palace Concert Theater – is nothing short of beautiful. In the 70’s, the space was used exclusively for rock concerts and one can only imagine the spectacle of chaotic rock ‘n’ roll contrasting with the ornate, royal beauty of such a space.

That contrast seemed present this past weekend at RISD’s runway show, Collection 2015. Often with heavy electronic tracks playing in the background (mixed by Jackson Hallberg ’15), the student designers showcased their best work. The main crux of the show was the senior thesis work of 17 graduating students who presented an all-encompassing range of work with tickling collection titles such as “*tween Queen *” (Yuan Peng Wu ’15) and “What’s your Packaging” (Elizabeth Hilfiger ’15).

Noah Berch - "Real Gone"

Noah Berch – “Real Gone”

That’s not to say the sophomores and juniors didn’t present strongly. Notable collections included Adam Dalton Blake’s (’16) outlandish “Judy’s Boys” inspired by wrestling, as well as more subtle collections like Jingxin Xu’s cut-and-sew project “Coleoptera.” Each student’s vision felt present in the designs; some flamboyant in their choice of colors and fabrics, others more bespoke. This was in part due to the different projects each class year had been assigned. The work from the Class of 2017, for instance, was broken up into two projects: Re-Innovative and Print. The Re-Innovative Project, centered around the use of recycled materials, stood out at the show; Noah Pica’s collection “Untamed” used materials like shredded backpack straps to mimic the aesthetic of fur. Pica cited a “tumultuous relationship with my body hair” as inspiration for the look.

Erato Hadjiyianni - "Pulp"

Erato Hadjiyianni – “Pulp”

The senior theses expanded upon some of the ideas and concepts present in the collections of the younger classes. Each student’s collection was supplemented by an introductory video – sometimes as simple as a close-up shot of a young woman eating brightly colored macarons or as pacifying as watching a figure standing out in the ocean, balancing on a jut of rocks, her large white and blue cloak flapping in the breeze. With sounds of heavy bass reverberating throughout the theater, models presented the senior projects, sometimes with astute poise, and at other times eating bananas. Pushing the envelope was Andrea Dyes’ “Congenital,” a collection of spherical designs that seemed to question modern notions of beauty and appeal. The elegant collections inspired the typical jaw-dropping that RISD Apparel is known for inducing, while the aristocratic, sometimes pompous, glitterati that NYFW and other fashion shows are known for was noticeably absent. Every single collection felt sincere and determined in its vision, however peculiar that vision might be.

Andrea Dyes - "Congenital"

Andrea Dyes – “Congenital”

Images by Matt Francis via, via and via.


IT’S. HERE.

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25* Things Learned from Freshman Year

Our editors asked us to make a list of 50 things we learned during our freshman year–so naturally we decided to do 25. Blog is S/NC right??

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1. Points are not unlimited.

Hank: I made it rain in the Blue Room the first week of first semester… until all of my points were gone.

Jack: I took a little longer than Hank to realize this cold truth. To be honest, I didn’t really know what points were. Turns out points are just a cute way of saying money.

2. How to Navigate the Gender-Neutral Bathrooms.

Hank: My only tip for any user of a communal, gender neutral bathroom is to wear someone else’s shoes.

Jack: I only wear Hank’s shoes.

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3. What is open late late night.

Hank: Sometimes you need food past Jo’s hours: that is the beauty of Foodler (New York Pizza is my spot).

Jack: Hank is a much better authority on this since rumor has it that he actually lives in one of the booths at Jo’s.

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PSA: Blue Room closing at 7 p.m. tonight

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What the Blue Room fridges look like right now

Looks like all the nice weather was too much for the Blue Room! The eatery will be closing at 7 p.m. tonight due to refrigerator malfunctions. Though Dining Services is working to get them repaired as soon as possible, the Blue Room will also be closed tomorrow and potentially Wednesday. Check the Blue Room twitter for updates.

Go get your food while you still can!

[Update: The Blue Room is closed again on Wednesday, April 13.]

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So you forgot Mother’s Day. What next?

Clara's Card

Mother’s Day is a time-honored tradition where we celebrate those who put up with our shit over the years and saw as at our highs and lows. It’s also a time where we shamelessly get to post countless numbers of pictures on social media with the hopes of maybe breaking 100 likes. Though Mother’s Day in the US was created on an arbitrary day, it still holds a lot of significance. Typically, celebrations include cards, flowers, and whatever other crap Hallmark has associated with the holiday. Despite it’s somewhat manufactured feel, it is a great opportunity to tell your mom just how much she means to you, which isn’t something we get to do every day. In short, you don’t want to forget it.

So what happens if you somehow didn’t see the thousands of Facebook posts, or see kids walking around outside the Rock on the phone, and forgot Mother’s Day? Well for one, you’re a jerk and you should feel bad. Just kidding. One writer at the blog (not myself) may be writing from experience in this matter because he or she may have forgotten to call last year. But do not give up hope! There are a few things you can do to try and save yourself.

1. Flowers are key. Spending a couple bucks now will save you lots of passive aggressiveness later.

2. Blame finals. This is a bold strategy, but your mom will appreciate that you’re working hard. The only problem is if you bomb your tests, then you’re really

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