Pittsburgh Pirates' Are Hosting A Hello Neighbor Night
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Pittsburgh Pirates' Are Hosting A Hello Neighbor Night

Strengthening their community.

The people of the world are in crisis. It seems like there is an ever-increasing number of refugees in the world. There are people leaving their home countries just so they can stay alive. To me, people seem to be scared of refugees because they have the same colored skin as some terrorist groups. Interestingly enough though, I am white, and no one associates me with mass shootings, although mass shootings are predominately committed by white people. However, fear does interesting things to people. To counteract the fear that is flooding through every part of the country, the Pittsburgh Pirates have decided to start making a difference right at home.

Pittsburgh has numerous events throughout the year to support all kinds of minorities, and really anyone facing any kind of adversity. As a student at a university right outside of the Pittsburgh city limits, I was not surprised to learn about the organization called Hello Neighbors. The organization's slogan is "Improving the lives of refugees and immigrants by matching them with dedicated neighbors to guide and support them in their new lives". This mission is extremely admirable and, in my opinion, should become standard practice across the United States of America, which is supposedly a great melting pot of cultures.

Now, you might be wondering what this organization and refugees have to do with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Well, the Pittsburgh Pirates have teamed up with Hello Neighbor to host a night that welcomes refugees and immigrants to their beloved city and country. The Hello Neighbor Night includes discounted game tickets for the August 1st game and a free picnic that the team is encouraging people to attend in order to meet their international neighbors.

This is particularly interesting for the Pirates to do, because Pittsburgh's percentage of foreign-born residents is the smallest out of all large metro areas in the country. That fact, along with the fact that Pittsburgh is the first city in America to have a professional sports team provide any kind of aid or support to refugees and immigrants, is truly outstanding. This special night also sets an example for other sports teams to follow.

People are normally scared of something they do not understand it, especially when it comes to different cultures. Educating people about refugees and immigrants might help to reduce the unwarranted fear that is sweeping America. Professional sports teams have a lot of influence in their communities. For a Major League Baseball team to be stepping up to the plate to support refugees and help educate the community is an important occurrence to take note of.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are using their influence to strengthen the bonds in their community. By hosting this event, Pittsburgh has the opportunity to grow and get stronger. It is my hope that many people attend the picnic and not just the game. I also hope that other major sports teams in the country follow the Pittsburgh Pirates' example, and help their community grow stronger through providing opportunities for the members of the dominant culture to bond with refugees and immigrants in order to understand their ways of life.

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5 Things I've Learned From Working In Corporate

It's not like "Beauty and the Briefcase".

At the beginning of the summer, I was ecstatic to have two part-time internships at established companies. I felt like I would be the next Andrea Sachs. I loved thinking about decorating my desk, strutting into the office with a Starbucks in hand and getting those biweekly direct deposits.

Four weeks later, and I'm looking forward to the end of my internships, because I'll have time to be a nineteen year old college student during the summer--free of a forty-hour work week commitment. With that said, I'm grateful for the experience. I've learned a lot, made mistakes and discovered some aspects of what I do and don't want as a career.

If you're interning this summer, you can probably relate to these five things I determined from working in corporate:

It's not as glamorous as it appears on television.

Movies and TV shows have the tendency of making the office environment seem very appealing and enticing with hot men and women, classy outfits and exciting drama. However, I've quickly realized that this image distorts reality (like many things on screens do these days). Eight hour days are not my definition of "fun". Unpaid 30-minute lunches are a high luxury. Most days, I'd rather be rocking my classic college look. And no, I've never heard of any steamy office hook ups.

It really is all about money.

I never understood how important money is to people and companies until I worked a job in corporate. Numbers are super valuable, and I'm not talking about the low ones in my bank account. Revenue, profit, debt, etc. are what's on people's minds constantly in corporate. Nearly every decision made in any company happens with money at the center of attention. It doesn't seem right, but I suppose that's just how it is for businesses to thrive and people to make a living. I don't think anyone has the power to change that.

You can't escape the hierarchy or cliques.

You may have tricked yourself into thinking that middle school, high school and even college cliques would magically disappear post-college graduation. I hate to break the news that they won't. In corporate, I've concluded that most workers in each department stick to themselves; there's not a lot of integration among company workers on the whole. Plus, the sense of hierarchy is palpable in the office. People talk to higher-ups differently than they do to those below them or equal to them. Someone from senior management who treats people working under them with respect is one of the best things you can find in a working professional. I wish we could find them more frequently.

Interns don't have much say.

I agree that you get out of it what you put into it when it comes to internships, but I also think that corporate companies over all don't care too much about what interns have to say. They say they want fresh voices and innovation, yet simultaneously don't want to change their ways or take risks. It's been rewarding seeing some of my ideas implemented, but, at the same time, it's also disappointing, because I want to contribute more and feel like I'm incapable of that.

There's no rush.

Working in corporate gives me a smack in the face as to this is what I will most likely be doing for 40 years plus after college. That terrifies me. We're in a world that tells kids to not grow up too fast, but to also do things to prepare them for the "real world". I honestly think squeezing lemonade and waiting tables prepped me almost as much as working in corporate has. I may take a break from it next summer and do something more fun and exciting, for there will be countless office days in the further future. Enjoy being a student while you can!

Everyone's different. You may discover you love working in corporate and that it's your dream. You may find a company that treats their employees very well. As for me, I'm starting to brainstorm freelance opportunities and earning money through genuine passions of mine that don't involve a stuffy corporate environment.

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Hunny of the Week 6/14: Larissa Martinez.

Hunny /[huhn-ee] / noun: a badass bitch who's not just hot: she's funny, smart, strong, and\or ambitious.

If you're trying to find a perfect combination of bravery and wit, look no further than this week's Hunny: Larissa Martinez. Not only did she graduate at the top of her class with a 4.95 GPA from McKinney Boyd High School in Texas, but she also received a full ride to Yale University.

So yes, incredibly smart. Brilliant really. But that's not all. During her valedictorian speech, she revealed to a crowd of hundreds a large part of her identity: That she and her family are undocumented immigrants.

*Feel free to take a second to absorb everything you just read*

This wasn't to just a few friends, this was to the whole class, plus their families and friends... and now all of the internet. Larissa's honesty served as an incredible lesson in hard work, overcoming obstacles, and, more importantly, humanity.

In the months leading up to this year's presidential election, undocumented immigrants have often been discussed in a critical light. They are largely and unfairly labeled as a "problem" plaguing this country. While there are statistics and data that support varying opinions, stereotypes and harmful rhetoric make it easy to lose sight of the very real contributions from brilliant individuals in the U.S. that struggle to live their day-to-day lives as undocumented immigrants, including Larissa.

Larissa and her mother and sister came to the U.S. to escape tough family circumstances in Mexico City, including an alcoholic, abusive father. They applied for citizenship, but the application has been pending for seven years.

"I am one of the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the shadows. I decided to stand before you today and reveal these unexpected realities because this might be the only chance I get to convey the truth to all of you, that undocumented immigrants are people, too," she said in her speech.

"People with dreams, aspirations, hopes and loved ones, people like me, people who have become a part of American society and way of life, and who yearn to help make America great again without the construction of a wall built on hatred and prejudice."

Larissa received a standing ovation for her honesty and reminder of the importance of this upcoming election. With all the obstacles in place for the 11 million individuals like Larissa, we truly admire her strength and courage.

"I am living proof that beating the system is possible." We couldn't agree more.

Watch Larissa's full speech and hear her message here.

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Real Talk |  Source: L. Smith, Shutterstock

When Fear Of Alcoholism Ruins The Party

Recognizing you have a problem ... before there's a problem.

My mom has been an alcoholic for as long as I can remember. Currently, she's sixty years old, and I'm twenty-one. Now is the most socially acceptable time for me to drink, and I'm already realizing that I have a problem.

Moderation doesn't always come easily to me. One drink turns into two, which snowballs into six. I'm a pleasant drunk, so my friends have no reason to call me out. I haven't royally fucked up by getting a DUI or anything like that, but my inability to pace myself has recently become a red flag. It's possible that alcohol and I are a bad mix.

Heavy drinking is sort of like smoking cigarettes. It looks cool when you're young and attractive, but as you age, the negative effects on your health can sully any inkling of glamour. When it comes to alcohol addiction, we often don't recognize the problem until it's too late. I don't want to wait until I destroy my liver before realizing there's a problem. Despite what movies, TV, ads, music, and college culture itself have said about people my age, I am not invincible. So what is a college student with a love of partying and a family history of alcoholism to do?


Source: CollegeMagazine

Get over the fear of socializing while sober. When you're sober and you walk into a room full of drunk people, you may feel obligated to start chugging drinks. I've convinced myself that I can't function in these settings without a few drinks, but that's just not true. If you allow those first few minutes of awkwardness to pass, letting your sober self get settled in, you may actually enjoy yourself more than if you were drunk. I've tried this out a couple times and found that sober me is just as fun as drunk me. Not to talk down alcohol, but you don't need it to have a good time around drunk people. In fact, sober you is more perceptive of your friends' debauchery, so be sure to take plenty of pics!

College life and heavy drinking seem to go hand-in-hand. But when an individual with a family history of alcoholism lives in a culture that over-normalizes drinking, there may be a problem. Just because something works for other people your age, doesn't mean it's right for you. Time will tell how I'll manage my problems with alcohol. I'm seeking counseling to get advice on how to deal with this, and I would encourage any one else in my situation to do so as well. If I learn to pace myself, that's great, but I think it's best for me to stop drinking altogether.

When it comes to any lifestyle choice, do what's right for you. Understand your risk factors before they become a problem. Have as much fun as you can while also taking care of yourself.

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Real Talk |  Source: L. Smith, Shutterstock

Handy Tips For Big Girls In The Big Apple

Tips for the Empire State Of Mind

As a lifelong Philadelphian, street smarts, a natural appreciation for grid planned cities (please explain to me why anyone would lay out streets any way besides perpendicular?), and a general laxness about jaywalking were already well engrained in me by the time I arrived in New York City for the summer. However, as much as I love my hometown, the two square miles that encompass the whole of downtown Philly can't begin to prepare a person for the monstrosity that is Manhattan. Through my morning commutes alongside herds of interns motivated by their new resume additions, Subway rides to the West Village in a quest to fill my Instagram with more aesthetic desserts than acceptable for any white girl, and river to river runs to justify said quest, I have picked up on those few little tips that one can only learn from experience, and I am here to share them with you today! Sorry boys, but these tricks and tips to city livin' are just for the ladies who have their own special place in NYC's heart.

What's so wonderful about tip #1 is that you don't have to even be looking for this piece of advice in order to receive it! This one goes out to all of us gals with resting bitch face, or really any resting face at all.

Tip #1: "Smile More"
As the saying goes, New York is full of the happiest and most friendly people on earth, so sporting a natural ear to ear grin is pretty much expected for all of her great inhabitants... err great female inhabitants. Ladies, you're much prettier when you're smiling, and when getting from point A to point B we all know the end goal is to exude prettiness to our surroundings! So turn that frown upside-down, because if you don't, chances are the man who resides at Lafayette and 3rd will remind you to.

Manhattan is an island that is ever evolving. The skyline is forever being added to and once unvisited streets are constantly turning into retail and residential hot spots. But all of this growing up and out couldn't be done without the hard work of New York City's construction crews that line many a busy street and intersection. This next tip ensures that this great city can continue to flourish without limitation.

Tip #2: Don't be a distraction
As women, we've learned by now from years in our school systems that our bodies are vehicles of great distraction. Breasts, buttocks, thighs, heads, shoulders, knees, and yes, toes, constantly put our male counterparts at risk of diversion. Many morning commutes have taken me along sidewalks lined on either side with those hard working men whose poor heads cannot help but follow the pitter pat of my sandals on the cement. With New York temperatures breaking records it can be natural to want to indulge oneself in breezy sun dresses or skirts for work, but from experience I can confidently say that a floor length bathrobe and wide brimmed sun hat are the best ways to ensure that New York continues to prosper as an urban hub.

The most frustrating time to spend a summer in New York has got to be the months just shy of your 21st birthday... or so I thought. While the local club and bar scene are notorious sticklers for fakes, the dating scene is open to all!

Tip #3: You're never too young to have fun!
In NYC you're always meeting new people, and lucky enough, this often won't require any effort at all on your behalf! As a woman of the city, take a train, walk a block, or spend a few minutes on a park bench and a young man is soon to introduce himself before you know it! As someone who personally doesn't usually engage in activities with men who approach me, I wouldn't want to waste a minute of their time, and thereby resort to politely informing these suitors that I am of the ripe age of 16 before the conversation escalates too far. While in other cities this line has disappointed and scared of new male companions, you'll be surprised and pleased to learn that in New York my announcement has yet to fend off any new friends! Sixteen shmixteen, I still have tits, right!

This last piece of advice is one that I hope women everywhere can carry with them on their journeys through life, for it is love that makes the world go round.

Tip #4: Open your heart to love
Too many times I've watched on as women are approached, talked to, or applauded for their beauty by men who are met with harsh exclamations to "leave them alone" or "fuck off." Wounded as they are, these young men clearly have been raised to never give up, and give their tactics another go with the next female to walk by. But these high spirits can't be sustained forever, and it's time for us women to open our hearts to love. We can be better than the generations before us who rarely boast love stories about how they met their significant other when he yelled " Nice ass, sweetie!" That can be your love story! It's time to get over our self -loathing and finally allow ourselves to swoon when gifted with the compliments we truly deserve!

I hope you take these words of wisdom to heart and always remember that New York City is a place to be your prettiest, most reserved, most loving self!

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The Struggles Of The Grammar Nerd

Take a look it's in a book.

1. When someone uses the wrong form of your/you're.

2. Or the wrong form of they're/there/their.

3. When someone doesn't use the Oxford comma.

4. When you post something on social media/send a text and accidentally misspell something or use incorrect grammar.

5. When you really want to correct your friend's grammar but you also don't want to be that person.

6. When people speak in text lingo.

7. When someone doesn't use proper punctuation.

8. When your friends always ask you to proofread their papers...

9. When someone uses a double negative...

10. When someone doesn't know the difference between affect and effect.

11. When someone doesn't use an apostrophe when signifying that something is possessive.

12. Or, when someone uses an apostrophe to make a word plural.

13. When you're listening to a song and the singer uses incorrect grammar.

14. And finally, when somebody tells you that you're a grammar nerd.

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