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The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Hometown: Spring Lake, New Jersey
Majors: Film Studies and Sociology
Minor: Theater
Activities: Twelfth Night (faculty production), Tour Guide, member of N20, President of Ski Club‌, and a barista at the Coffee Closet

Favorite aspect of Connecticut College:
In all honesty, the Honor Code. I had not really understood the magnitude and great effect this policy had on the Conn community until I got here. It creates an environment where the students and teachers genuinely respect each others’ time, space and materials. It has made me feel more safe and welcome in this already tightknit community. I think every college should strive to have as good an honor code as this one.

Favorite memory at Connecticut College:
I’ve already had so many great memories here. However, I distinctly remember having a blast while studying for my first Italian test. My two friends and I stayed in Shain Library until the alarm rang. Being the last ones in the library and we were practically forced to leave at 2 A.M.  We ended up doing really well on the test and we plan on making a tradition out of this cram-session.

Favorite activity in New London or the region:
Taking walks in the arboretum. It is really peaceful and nice over there, so spending time there with some friends is pretty great.

Wild, Wild World

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Back in November, my mom gave me two concert tickets for my birthday. My favorite band, Bastille, was going on their “Wild, Wild World” tour and they happened to be playing at Mohegan Sun Casino, which is a 20-minute drive from campus. It was the perfect opportunity for me and my friend, fellow blogger Dani Maney, to get off campus and venture to this place in Uncasville, Connecticut.

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Setting a Different Course

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20  - The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

One of the most magical parts of college is the ability to make your own decisions for most, if not all, things related to yourself. I enrolled in five classes this semester: Elementary Italian, Acting 1, my First-Year Seminar, Twelfth Night (a Theater Department performance that I am receiving four credits for) and Calc B: Derivatives/Integrals.

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Road Trip Reflection

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. This is the final post in a series of pieces about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

I spent the last day of the road trip alone in Samuel’s house in Virginia. Samuel left with his family in the morning to visit his grandma in Illinois and as soon as I woke up I drove Dani to the airport so she could fly back to Massachusetts.

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Prepping for Careers

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Most incoming first-year students are excited about the idea of new classes, new friends and new experiences. One of the last things on their mind is the process surrounding a prospective internship or (yikes) a job down the line. Finding a job was the last thing on my mind too but, luckily for first-year students at Conn, the College begins the process for us right away.

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My Meeting with a Lawyer

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Since the fourth grade, I have wanted to pursue a career in either the performing arts or the entertainment industry. However, I also felt that I should have a backup plan for this notoriously rocky career path. I always liked the idea of being a lawyer because being in a courtroom excites me. I decided to reach out to my mom’s lawyer friend, Mitch, over winter break to gain a new perspective on what it takes to practice law. 

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My First Snow Day

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

In my entire four years of high school at Grace Church School in New York, I only experienced one snow day. Our headmaster felt that if he could make it out of his driveway, so could everyone else. So, naturally, when everyone at Conn was talking about a possible snow day on Thursday, I was among those who thought it too good to be true. By nightfall on Wednesday evening, I began to come around to this seemingly impossible event. I was leaving the library when a friend told me there was a snow day tomorrow—it just hadn’t been announced yet.

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My Econ Experience

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Typically, students who are keen on majoring in theatre and have an interest in minoring in film studies don’t leap at the prospect of studying economics. But when said student happens to join an econ course by accident, they may have their preconceived notions about the subject turned on their head.

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I Must be Funny

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

I wasn’t even going to audition.

It was yet another bright and sunny Friday afternoon at Conn, and the annual club fair was in full force on Library Green. I was running the Ski Club booth given my new position as president for this academic year. Along with the other club members, I had been recruiting new members for about an hour before I took a break to say hi to my friends at other booths. My friend and fellow blogger, Dani Maney ‘20, was running a booth at the fair for her improv group N20. 

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Hooray for J-Day

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Even though I am only a sophomore at Conn, I think a lot about post-grad life and what my career will be. I have a vision of moving out to Los Angeles upon graduation and delving into the entertainment business in some capacity. So, when I heard that something called J-Day was happening at Conn and saw that a Conn alumnus who is a film critic at Entertainment Weekly would be in attendance I knew I had to go.

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Falling at Ski Club and at Conn

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

I have never really been much of a skier—in fact, the first time I skied was in the 10th grade on a high school ski trip. Since then, I have skied a handful of times, maybe four or five, and have not achieved much greatness in these endeavors. That is to say, I fall a lot when I ski. A lot.

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Day 9: Panera, Pilot and Pork

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Dani and Mark take a selfie while in the car on their way through Mississippi
Dani snapped this pic of us on our way through Mississippi.

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

We awoke to the sound of people knocking on our hotel room door.

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Day 8: From Beignets to Fried Chicken

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Dani took this picture of Mark with a wax figure of the Allman Brothers Band
Dani took this picture of me with a wax figure of Jaimoe from the Allman Brothers Band.

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1

The first moments of today were a little bit hectic.

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Day 7: Exploring NOLA

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

A photo of our feast at the New Orleans Creole Cookery.
Our feast at the New Orleans Creole Cookery.

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

This morning was similar to yesterday’s in that it was a bit of a disappointment...Dani, Samuel and I did not rise until noon!

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Day 6: To New Orleans

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Samuel rests his head on the table next to the remains of his lunch from In-N-Out Burger.
In-N-Out Burger: 1 Samuel: 0

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1

This morning was a bit of a disappointment…

When we first planned the road trip I said that I would make an itinerary for our trip and that we would stick to it as best we could. Unbeknownst to me, the schedule for today had us leaving Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, at 8 a.m. (not getting up at 8 a.m., leaving at 8 a.m.).

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Day 5: There’s Plenty of Corn in Kansas

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Dani, Mark and Samuel take a car selfie with a Lawrence, Kansas, geofilter.
Landed in Kansas.

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1

Usually, I am the first of us awake on a given morning of this road trip. This morning, however, was a bit different. 

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Day 4: 650 Feet Above St. Louis

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

A view from the top of the Saint Louis Gateway
The view from atop the St. Louis Gateway Arch

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1

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Day 3: In the Middle of the Midwest

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Samuel eats the last slice of deep dish pizza.
Samuel fell in love with deep-dish pizza too.

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

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Day 2: My First Home

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

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Day 1: From Neptune to Columbus

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

I am sitting in the back seat of my friend Samuel’s Honda CR-V. Samuel is in the passenger seat and our friend and my fellow blogger Dani Maney is driving.

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Day 12: To Samuel’s House

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

Today began just as the day before it did: Dani, Samuel, and I awoke on the floor of my friend David’s apartment. We were a little achy from our sleeping accommodations but, again, we were just grateful to have a free place to stay.

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Day 11: Nashville

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

Waking up today was a bit more strenuous than in days past. What I didn’t mention in my previous post is where exactly Dani, Samuel and I slept in David’s apartment. He lives with a few roommates and it was a pretty packed visit so our area of slumber was David’s bedroom floor. Frankly, it was not too comfortable but I did not care much because he was generous enough to let us crash with him for free. It wasn’t glamorous but it was worth it because we saved a lot of money that we would have spent on a hotel room in Nashville.

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Day 10: Travelin’ in Tennessee

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

It was the most abrupt beginning to a day on our road trip yet: the three of us were startled awake by the Fairfield Inn & Suites’ fire alarm. Dani, Samuel and I got dressed as quickly as possible and made our way outside. We overheard hotel staff discussing the cause of the commotion and discovered that a guest had merely burned their toast. It was a pretty comical incident but rather frustrating for the three of us as well as the other hotel guests.

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Conn in the Fall

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20  - The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Tempel Green is never more crowded than #CCFallWeekend. Connecticut College’s Fall Weekend, otherwise known as “Parents’ Weekend”, is one of the most exciting times of the school year for students, faculty and parents alike. My mom drove down for the event and we spent some time cheering on the men’s soccer team, watching the faculty-directed production of “Hedda Gabler,” and strolling around Harvestfest.

The mens’ soccer team played Tufts on Tempel Green:

Conn in the Fall blog post by Mark Phillips

The Theater Department staged an adaption of Henrik Ibsen’s “Hedda Gabler”:

Conn in the fall blog post photo 2 by Mark McPhillips

That’s me reppin’ my new Connecticut College sweatshirt at Harvestfest:

Conn in the fall photo 4 blog post by Mark McPhillips

Even President Katherine Bergeron and her husband, Butch Rovan, came out for Harvestfest:

Blog pic Blog post by Mark McPhillips

Conn’s transformation underneath the blanket of fall:

Blog post photo blog post photo

(pics from Julia Neumann, ‘20)

 

Fall Weekend proves to be a highlight of the season. It was awesome to see my mom for a few days before being left to my independence once again. I was sad to see her go, but excited to get back into the swing of things come Monday! For more pictures from the weekend visit: (http://ccfallweekend16.pics.io/)

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Coffee Closet

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

I’m writing this entry from one of two perspectives that I occupy within The Coffee Closet: I am either a customer or a barista. Last year, I could be found in The Coffee Closet at least once a day, considering I practically run on coffee and lived in South Campus (where this shop is located). I was hired at Conn’s newest student-run coffee shop last spring and began working there this fall.

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Behind the Scenes of 'Twelfth Night'

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20  - The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

My entire high school career was dedicated to our theater department; whether that meant taking the drama classes, acting in the productions or eventually directing a show, I was always involved in one dramatic aspect or another. So, it was only natural that I continue this level of commitment once I arrived at Connecticut College.

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