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Conservatory² (C²) Internship Reflections-Daniel Reifsteck

Posted on: July 17th, 2014 by Mollie Kaebisch

Well time to take a good deep breath in celebration of a crazy week. This will definitely be long because this past week was incredibly busy. Although the previous weeks were no joke either, I will only talk about the conference week otherwise this will go on for pages.

The 2nd conference and 1st festival for Deep Listening is complete. The work for the past month has really paid off and the participants loved the whole experience.

The whole conference started with a pre-conference workshop with Heloise Gold.

Heloise is a T’ai Chi/Qu Gong instructor from Austin, Texas that has worked with Pauline for many years and she has incorporated Deep Listening into her T’ai Chi practice. I got sucked into the opportunity very last minute because Heloise needed someone to pick her up from the bus station, I was available and I ended up getting invited to participate in her workshops.  Doing T’ai Chi for 6-7 hours a day was very refreshing…Having to wake up at 6:30 every morning was not as refreshing but definitely  a nice kick in the seat of the pants.

Here is where I get to tie in how attending a conservatory has made other non-musical adventures significantly easier. There were some complications between RPI’s summer outreach office and the participants and so some complications came up with how the housing and meal plans worked with the pre-conference workshop.  This situation ended up being a good warning for future events like the caterer for breakfast sleeping in one morning and all of the sudden a conference for 100 participants doesn’t have any coffee or food to eat in the morning.  But fortunately in both situations I moved fast and communicated with all the participants the best I could and all of the problems were solved. So the life after Lawrence lesson of this week was that no matter how much work you put into making sure your part of a project goes smoothly, there is always a chance that someone else might mess up and you have to be ready to make the adjustment.

Another highlight of the conference and festival included assisting Leaf Miller with the AUMI workshop.  Although the program was originally designed for people with disabilities, it was a lot of fun to get a bunch of adults improvising with AUMI and drumming together.  Leaf is also such a pleasure to work with that the whole experience with her was such a blast.

My favorite performance of the entire festival is probably not too much of a surprise. In anticipation of their new album coming out, Pauline Oliveros, Stuart Dempster, Jesse Stewart, Johannes Welsch, and Jonas Braasch joined together to present Sonic Gems. All of their musical decisions seemed perfect and fit into each other so well that it was hard to tell it was all improvised. Some true deep listening and great musical minds working together that night.  It was also cool to see a 5 foot gong. Carrying that gong was a different story.

So now it’s time to focus on Pauline’s next book. I will read all of the articles and speeches to be included and then will settle on a good order! It’s strange to say, but I think I actually might be good at this sort of thing. This will take me back to my old high school days with drama and speech team.  I’m normally pretty good with finding the main spine of each section and then tying it all together to one meaningful whole. We’ll see how it goes with this!

I’ve also been going  to New York consistently and got a lesson with Chris Lamb, principal percussion for the NY Phil, played with Samba New York, and went to the one year anniversary of Thursday night rumba led by Roman Diaz. All of those experiences were very inspiring and have kept me practicing plenty.  It’s pretty hard to find the time I need to make the progress I want in all of these musical styles, but I just have to trust that small chunks over long periods of time will pay off somewhere down the road.

So thanks for reading, and I hope this is exciting prospective students as much as I want it to. I don’t feel like I would be getting these opportunities or meeting as many great people if I went somewhere else for undergrad.

Lawrence Scholars in Business (LSB) Internship Reflections-Andrew Borresen

Posted on: July 17th, 2014 by Mollie Kaebisch

Greetings again from Chicago! As I begin this brief update on my exciting internship with the National Basketball Retired Players Association, I cannot help but marvel at how quickly the first month of my summer with the association has gone. On second thought, this feeling can probably be attributed to the heavy, engaging workload that I have been assigned. I guess you could consider me a unique intern as this summer represents a rotational experience with the NBRPA, which means I am getting a wide array of experience in several departments. Thus far, I have been quite active in Operations, Special Events, and Membership Benefits & Programming.

I have learned many different things about the NBRPA, the NBA, sports business, and my career interests thus far, however I would like to touch on one specific thought right now. It has become quite apparent to me early on here, and it represents a bit of classic intern wisdom that deserves some true consideration. Do the “little things” well. Sure – it’s cliche, and it’s obvious. But it’s also the truth, and its value transcends the business world. Over the course of my first month at the NBRPA, I have updated and re-organized our organization’s chief file cabinet, worked the telephones, sorted through a storage unit, and done a host of other small tasks. While surely that is not all I have done in my first four weeks, I have taken a special liking to knocking out tasks like those. By accomplishing the day’s small tasks efficiently and effectively, one becomes reliable, dependable, and trustworthy in the eyes of the staff and higher-ups in the office. As a basketball player, I am beyond compelled to use the hoops analogy here. Give me the team that is fundamentally sound, talks on defense, always knows score/time/possession, sets screens with conviction, makes crisp passes, and does the rest of the “little things” well, and I’m telling you we are winning the ballgame. These “little things” may not always be the most glorious or enjoyable activities, but from my experience embracing these duties, I can assure you that they are a worthwhile use of your time and just might represent your golden ticket to new responsibilities.

Lawrence Scholars in Business (LSB) Internship Reflections-Ali Heiring

Posted on: July 17th, 2014 by Mollie Kaebisch

Realizing that I am wrapping up my first month with Hurar Investment Group, I can’t believe how time has flown. I have been involved in a wide variety of activities around the office, getting glimpses of the design process and architectural elements of the hotels as well as getting some hands-on experience in finance and industry research.  One of the most important stages of work here is the estimation of income and expenses for the hotel once it is up and running – this determines the return on investment that the investors will receive and predicts how profitable the property rehabilitation will be overall.  I participated in this process for one of the company’s hotels. My supervisor created a cash flow statement predicting the profits of the first 10 years of operation, and the hotel manager also created a cash flow statement with similar predictions.  However, there were significant disparities in their estimations. I was given the chance to compare the two statements and discover where the fundamental differences were in incomes and expenses.  Once I found these, I presented them to my supervisor and created a cash flow statement that combined elements of both of their predictions.  It was very interesting to see what huge effects certain numbers could have on the entire cash flow statement, such as occupancy rate for the hotel.  If you increased the occupancy rate just a few percent each month, it wouldn’t appear to be a drastic increase, but it increased profits considerably.  The goal is to be conservative, yet accurate with these predictions so that people understand the risks and potential rewards that come with their investment.

I am now working on industry research, looking at hostels and hotels in the Malaga area to compare prices based on the time of the year.  It surprised me that there were so many hostels competing at similar prices in the area, but they sell out regularly so the demand for tourism here is clearly increasing.  Hostels are popular in Europe for student travel and young adults because they offer cheap, centrally located accommodations and often have a very social atmosphere.  There are fewer hostels in the United States, so there is less direct competition between hostels and hotels there. One interesting thing I have noticed is that due to the prevalence of hostels here, many hotels increase the amenities and free benefits of staying with them –as well as focusing on factors such as silence, cleanliness, and air conditioning- to draw in customers. So far I have learned a lot about this industry, and having a chance to improve my Excel skills, get hands-on experience with financial statements, and conduct bilingual research will serve me well in the future.

Lawrence Scholars in Business (LSB) Internship Reflections, First Impressions-Ali Heiring

Posted on: July 7th, 2014 by Mollie Kaebisch

Arriving at the Hurar Investment Group for my first day was both exciting and intimidating; I had only been in Spain for about one week and was still adjusting to the new language, culture, and pace of life.  I came to the office, which was a flurry of activity, and was greeted by my supervisor.  I was shown the entire office, introduced to the rest of the employees, and then given an office of my own from which I would work.  The work done through Hurar Investment Group is focused on hotels – purchasing property around the city of Málaga, designing a hotel for the space, pitching to investors for funding, building the hotel, and turning over the finished hotel to someone else to manage.  I am interested in economics and sustainable development so I was curious to see how the government regulations regarding new building construction in Spain compared with the United States.  I was given a copy of the Documento Básico, which outlines the energy requirements for new buildings to meet regarding energy demand, building materials, solar hot water heaters, and the use of solar or renewable energies.  This was my first experience reading technical Spanish, so it was equal parts frustrating and rewarding.  I discovered that the energy requirements were much more progressive than I had anticipated- 50% of all hot water must be heated through solar, and approximately 20% of the hotels energy demand is met by renewable energy.

I am very excited to see what my opportunities are as my work progresses here, between the architectural components of designing passive solar buildings and reviewing the cash flow statements of hotels to create accurate estimates of costs and revenues.  After learning about the technical aspects of the hotels, I will be able to incorporate my knowledge into the marketing presentations that are shown to potential investors.  I hope to emphasize the sustainability efforts of the hotels, because this is becoming a more important element for potential tourists and many of the competing hotels do not mention their conservation and sustainability programs. This could provide an edge for Hurar Investment Group, and would give me hands-on marketing experience.  All of the documents I work with are written in Spanish, which is helping me improve my language skills, but has also shown me the difficulties of working in a non-native language.  I have a better understanding of the challenges that non-native English speakers face daily in America.  On a large scale, having the opportunity to work abroad and experience the cultural differences in workplaces and customer relationships will be eye-opening and challenging, and will ultimately allow me to return to the US as a more well-rounded employee suited to work in an international company.

Conservatory² (C²) Internship Reflections, First Impressions-Daniel Reifsteck

Posted on: July 3rd, 2014 by Mollie Kaebisch

I’m here and finally settled into Troy.  I also ended up procrastinating writing about this move for two weeks.  For those of you who don’t know, I was lucky enough to be selected to be an intern for Pauline Oliveros and the Deep Listening Institute through Lawrence’s Conservatory Squared Program.


It is hard to pin down exactly what my first day was like because after I got settled in some small projects were thrown at me. As I completed these projects, the workload increased until we got to this the work started gradually overtime and has slowly added up to some larger projects.


So what sort of projects does this internship bring?

*I will help the Deep Listening Institute currently located in Kingston, New York make the transition into “The Center for Deep Listening” at RPI in Troy.

*I will help in any way possible leading up to the 2nd Annual International Conference on Deep Listening.

*Help Leaf Miller with the AUMI (Adaptive Use Musical Instruments) program in preparation for a presentation on the AUMI.

*And I will assist Pauline and the rest of the conference staff in whatever way I can.  Right now that means help organize Pauline’s book that she is working on.


It’s looking like a great summer and an amazing chance to work with phenomenal musicians.

Conservatory² (C²) Internship Reflections, First Impressions-Ryan Hays

Posted on: July 3rd, 2014 by Mollie Kaebisch

My first week working at the New York Jazz Academy has been a rapid immersion into the life of a working musician and business owner.  It has been a week full of problem solving, creative brainstorming, budgeting concerns, and all that other adult stuff I was told I would encounter in the future.  Well, it turns out that stuff is real.

The first day on the job involved a complete scheduling crisis.  NYJA rents space from the Church of St. Paul and St. Andrew in Manhattan’s Upper West Side, and has been doing so for the past several years.  Upon arriving at the church to double check dates and times, program director Javier Arau and I found that NYJA was completely absent from the schedule and the scheduling coordinator was nowhere to be found.  With classes starting in a few days and people flying in from all over the world to attend this program, this was a major problem.  After an hour of working NYJA back into the schedule, Javier turned to me and said, “There’s always a solution.  People will tell you it can’t be fixed, but there’s always a solution.” That turned out to be our mantra for the week.

I was also fortunate enough to be involved with test filming for a series of online lessons that NYJA hopes to launch.  After we had finished filming for the day, Javier and I discussed the challenges of teaching through video: being engaging when there’s no immediate feedback, effectively communicating information in a short period of time, stylistic approaches, attracting a wide audience base, etc.  It was great to be working so closely with Javier as he starts to develop new ideas to expand his business.

Classes begin next week and I can’t wait to see things in full swing.  The summer is off to a fantastic start!