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Weekend Recs: March Madness

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! Falvey Memorial Library is delivering you another semester of Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

We are mere days away from Selection Sunday and anticipation grows as March Madness teams are selected and the tournament commences. To help you prepare and get excited, I’ve compiled recommendations you can dive into over the weekend from a 5-minute article to a link to the Villanova archives, where you can spend hours looking at old Villanova basketball photos and more! Enjoy and go, Wildcats! 

If you have 5 minutes… keep up with Villanova Bracket Watch as we inch closer and closer to Selection Sunday. See how the rules of the tournament and where all the teams stand now may impact Villanova moving forward.  

If you have 14 minutes… read this article with predictions on which 68 teams will make it into the 2022 NCAA tournament.   

If you have 33 minutes… listen to the March Madness 365 podcast hosted by college basketball analyst and correspondent Andy Katz. Each week he breaks down the biggest news in men’s college basketball and makes his predictions.  

If you have 1 hour… watch Perfect Upset: Villanova vs. Georgetown, the 2005 sports documentary about the Villanova Wildcats’ shocking win against the heavily favored Georgetown Hoyas in the 1985 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. 

If you have an afternoon… spend some time digging through the Villanova Digital Collection and their collection of Villanova basketball items. The archives include everything from images and media guides to tickets and more! 


Jenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: Russia & Ukraine

By Jenna Renaud

map of Ukraine & Russia borders

Source: “The Economist”

Happy Friday, Wildcats! Falvey Memorial Library is delivering you another semester of Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

If you’ve been paying any attention to international news lately, you may have seen that tensions are rising between Ukraine and Russia, and war may be on the horizon. If you’ve just been getting bits and pieces from social media, but don’t understand the full story, I’ve done the digging and put together recs to keep you in the know, whether you have 1 minute or 40 minutes.  

If you have 1 minute… watch the latest update from President Joe Biden following Russia’s claim they would “pull troops back” from the borders.

If you have 6 minutes… skim this article breaking down the history between Russia and Ukraine and the details of why tensions are escalating right now. 

If you have 8 minutes… listen to “The Takeaway” podcast by NPR. You will hear them discuss the conflict at the border as well as have a conversation with Alex Ward, a national security reporter at Politico. 

If you have 40 minutes… interact with the Council on Foreign Relations’ Global Conflict Tracker. They offer updates on the conflict as well as a slideshow for a more visual exploration of the conflict. 

If you have 2 minutes or hours… follow live updates regarding the situation via Al Jazeera’s website. 


Jenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: Valentine’s Day

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week.

Valentine’s Day is here and whether you’re celebrating this year with your friends, family, or a significant other, we have a variety of weekend recs to make the holiday special! This week we cover everything from diving into the archives to fine dining and theatre. Check it out below, whether you have 2 minutes or an entire evening.

If you have 2 minutes… read Anna Jankowski’s TBT this week, where she dove into the digital library and found Valentine’s Day themed content.

If you have an evening… visit The Refectory for dinner and drinks. They have a special Valentine’s Day menu this Friday, Saturday, and Monday, so make your reservation today! The perfect date night option without having to venture too far from campus.

If you have a sweet tooth & a couple hours… make one of these 57 Valentine’s Day Dessert Recipes from Brit + Co. If you do, make sure you tag Falvey so we can see your creations!

If you have 1 hour and 37 minutes… get together with your Galentines and watch the coming-of-age 90s classic comedy, Clueless, currently available on HBO Max. Check out this list of the 30 Best Galentine’s Day Movies for You and Your Bestie to Enjoy for more movie recs.

If you have 2 hours… go on a date to the theatre – the Villanova Theatre. This week marks opening weekend of Villanova Theatre’s newest show, The Revolutionists. Click here to learn more and purchase tickets.


Jenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: Winter Olympics

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

It feels as though we were just talking about the Tokyo Olympics (because we are), but nevertheless, it’s that time again, when athletes from all over the world are in Beijing, preparing to compete. Between COVID-19 and diplomatic boycotts, the Olympics may not be exactly the harmonious, international event we hope for, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still get excited and tune in to support our athletes! This weekend, I’m providing recs for everything Winter Olympics-related, whether you have 2 minutes or 2 hours (or all weekend, because let’s be honest, I could watch curling for HOURS).

If you have 2 minutes… read about what the robot chefs will be serving up in Beijing this year. 

If you have 9 minutes… skim everything you need to know about the Olympics from the controversies to which U.S. athletes to keep your eyes on. 

If you have 10 minutes… read about the latest Olympic snow sport arms race taking place following an environmental ban on toxic ski waxes. 

If you have 1 hour and 38 minutes… and want to celebrate the Olympics without actually watching (or paying for additional streaming services) watch Cool Runnings on Disney+ or any of these other seven movies based on the winter Olympics (some more loosely based than others). 

If you have 1 hour and 40 minutes… watch the opening ceremonies! Beijing is 13 hours ahead, so the opening ceremonies technically happened at 6:30 a.m. this morning, but if you were sleeping then, check out this article about where you can stream. NBC also offers a full schedule that you can customize, so you know what times you need to be watching! 


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: SCOTUS

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

If you’ve read any news the past three days, you may have seen the rumors that SCOTUS justice Stephen Breyer may be retiring, leading to the fourth new appointment in the last five years and Biden’s first. It can be difficult to keep up with everything in the political sphere, so this week I’ll be providing a range of podcasts, articles, videos, movies, and books to help you get a better understanding of the Supreme Court and what’s currently going on in the news, whether you have 4 minutes or 12 hours! 

If you have 4 minutes… read the latest on Justice Stephen Breyer’s alleged retirement and how Biden could make history with his new appointment, if it reaches that stage. 

If you have 4 minutes and 30 seconds… watch this video breaking down how U.S. Supreme Court justices get appointed to get a better understanding of the process the U.S. government may be going through real soon.

If you have 39 minutes… listen to the most recent episode of the SCOTUS 101 podcast, a podcast breaking down the latest news from the Supreme Court.  

If you have 1 hour and 28 minutes… watch RBG on Netflix. The 2018 documentary on the life of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s life and work on woman’s human rights. 

If you have 12 hours and 30 minutes… read The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court by Jeffrey Toobin. Although published in 2008, this book still offers an inside look at the inner workings of the Super Court and how justices make decisions.  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: The World of Technology

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

Whether it’s because I finally invested in a new iMac after a decade or I’m still mourning the predictable, yet still upsetting death of BlackBerry phones, technology has been top of mind lately. It seems like every day there’s talk of the latest technology trend catching on and spreading like wildfire. For this weekend, I’ve compiled recs to help you keep up with the latest technology news, whether you have 3 minutes or 4 hours. 

If you have 3 minutes… watch this video about the Icelandverse. We’ve all heard about the Metaverse, but have you heard about the Icelandverse? This Icelandic tourism ad pokes fun at Zuckerburg’s Metaverse video and does a good job at making viewers want to book a trip to the real Iceland. 

If you have 5 minutes… get an overview of everything going on regarding the 5G upgrades taking place nationwide and why airports and the FAA aren’t too happy about it. 

If you have 8 minutes… read predictions about 2022 being the year of the smart house and what technological developments we can expect to see in the home. 

If you have 2 hours and 20 minutes… watch Ready Player One on Hulu. Ready Player One is based on the 2011 science fiction novel by Ernest Cline. The story takes place in 2045 where people escape the world by entering into the virtual reality entertainment universe, OASIS. If you haven’t yet seen this movie, it’s definitely worth a watch! 

If you have 4 hours and 30 minutes… read Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. Arguably one of the greatest dystopian novels of all time, Brave New World takes place in a world where technology has taken the place of some of humanity’s most important traditions and purposes. Despite being written in 1931, Huxley’s novel is still incredibly relevant and thought-provoking today.  


""Jenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Reflections from a GA – Traveling Through Fall 2021

By Jenna Renaud 

This semester is coming to a close as well as 2021, so it’s the perfect time to reflect back on my third semester working in Falvey as a Graduate Assistant (GA.) Also, I may or may not be stealing the idea from Falvey’s other GA Ethan, so make sure to check out his post! At the beginning of this semester, I officially handed off the duties of Cat in the Stax to Ethan.

As excited as I was to see someone new take over the role and provide their creativity, I wasn’t sure where that left me in regard to blog writing. That being said, reflecting back, I definitely was able to fill my semester with fun and challenging projects and content to take on! 

Courtesy of Jenna – Beckett Bites

The first weekly blog post I took on this semester was Peek at the Week, a preview of all the events going on in the upcoming week. I then expanded that to include a “Word of the Week” and a “This Week in History” section. Looking back, I would have to say that my favorite “Word of the Week” probably had to be my first, “petrichor” or the smell of rain. This was also a word I learned during a team meeting at my summer internship and was able to bring over into my job here! Through my “This Week in History” sections, I learned more about historic events from the opening of the New York subway to the lore surrounding the mysterious Bermuda Triangle. 

In addition to expanding my history knowledge every week, my Weekend Recs allowed me to scour the internet to deliver snapshots on what is going on in the world. From recapping important topics like COVID vaccinations to silly topics like potatoes, I kept up with the news and maintained a pulse on what was happening outside of my Villanova community bubble. I also got the opportunity to write about some of my favorite topics including Taylor Swift, the NFL and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Falvey continuously challenges me to find ways to tie my passions and interests into my Falvey writings and the Villanova community.  

Writing for the blog has also allowed me to create and maintain relationships outside of Falvey, including with Villanova Theatre! Last year I got a taste of Villanova Theatre through their virtual productions; however, fall 2021 brought the full experience and the opportunity to see the first live performances in the brand-new John and Joan Mullen Center for the Performing Arts. This semester I covered “WHITE” and co-wrote a blog on “Beckett Bites” with Ethan. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to learn more about the theatre community and promote incredibly talented individuals every semester. 

HHAW Falvey display

Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week display

Being back in-person full-time for the fall semester brought with it new and exciting changes to my daily duties. Rather than being in the office solo once a week, I was surrounded by my co-workers and a team of student workers! The opportunities for collaboration were something I didn’t know I craved so much coming out of last year. From learning the ropes on poster deliveries from Kelly, to collaborating on the Taylor Weekend Recs with Anna, to reading Allie’s Flick or Flip blogs, I have genuinely enjoyed growing with all of Falvey’s student workers.  

Being on campus altogether also calls for more displays and events! Putting up the Homelessness Awareness Week display with Anna challenged me to think about ways to get students’ attention for important topics through a static display. Our salty & sweet finals grab-and-go table required creative thinking to find a way to help relieve students’ stress in a COVID-safe way!  

All in all, I cannot express how grateful I am for this past semester at Falvey and part of what made it great was you all reading and engaging! Time is flying by and I am excited to make Spring 2022 the best semester yet. Cheers to 2022! 

 

 


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: December 10

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

Whether you have accepted it (or are still in denial like I am) finals are upon us, and the Holidays somehow seem farther away than they did last week. This week I’m sharing recs that help you stay in the know about what’s going on in the world, but also will help you relax and crush the end of the semester. So take a deep breath and add some news reading and stress-buster activities into your weekend.  

If you have 3 minutes… download a mindfulness app like “Insight Timer” or “Headspace” to clear your head and re-center your focus.  

BONUS WEEKDAY REC: On Monday, Dec. 13, attend Mindfulness Monday via Zoom from 1–1:30 p.m. More information and the link can be found here. 

If you have 5 minutes… read The Skimm’s daily newsletter from Thursday that breaks down everything from the Daunte Wright trials to the Beijing Olympics to the latest on the omicron variant. Their quick daily newsletters will help you stay in the know, so the world doesn’t seem entirely different when you emerge from finals in a week. 

If you have 1 hour… and are near Falvey from 45 p.m. Friday evening, stop by Room 205 for the Stress-Free Healthy Happy Hour event. Take a break from studying and join in for an hour of pet therapy, giveaways, and stress-reducing activities. Learn more here. 

If you have 1 hour and 3 minutes… listen to the Little Women movie soundtrack on Spotify while you study. It’s one of my go-to focus and study albums! 

If you have 1 hour and 39 minutes… go see Encanto, Disney’s newest animated film that features music by Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda. Relax watching a Disney movie with great music!  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.


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Weekend Recs: December 3

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

Thanksgiving is over, and it’s officially December, which means it’s fully time to celebrate the holiday season!

This weekend I’m providing recommendations to get you ready for the most wonderful time of the year. Take a break from studying to get into the Christmas spirit–I promise it will be the perfect stress reliever and put a smile on your face. Whether you have less than 10 minutes or the whole weekend to relax (if that’s you, tell me your secrets!), I have the perfect recs for you! 

If you have 5 minutes… and need to prioritize studying next week, stop by Falvey’s Carrel-tas Commitment station and enter to win a drawing for an exclusive study room for one night next week. In addition, you’ll be entered in for the grand prize that gives you access to the Falvey room 206 study suite for you and five of your friends during the entirety of finals week (Dec. 10-17). Read more about the contest here. 

If you have 20 minutes or a whole evening… drive around the area and look at people’s Christmas lights and decorations! Get some inspiration and then bring it down to a smaller scale to decorate your dorm room or apartment.  

If you at least 90 minutes… watch one of the movies on Den of Geek’s Christmas Movies: A Complete Holiday Streaming Guide. Seems like a big claim to have the complete streaming guide of holiday movies, but they definitely did have some good ones on the list! 

If you have 2 hours… read The Father Christmas Letters by J.R.R. Tolkien. A quick read, the book is a collection of letters that Tolkien, as Santa and Santa’s right-hand polar bear, wrote to his children and their responses. The book is available in Falvey’s collection! 

If you have 4 hours… drive into the ‘burbs and visit Shady Brook Farm’s drive-through light display! The display is on most Philly-area Christmas lists and is a must-see if you haven’t been before. After you drive through the lights, park to walk through their market, grab some hot chocolate or other drinks, and cozy up around one of their many fire pits.  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department.


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Thanksgiving Break Recs

Happy Thanksgiving break, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

We have officially made it to a much-needed Thanksgiving break. Take some time this long weekend to relax, enjoy time with family, and maybe catch up on a little bit of work so you can come back and crush the end of the semester. For your downtime, we’ve compiled a list of recommendations, from delicious recipes to train-ride books to TV recs. 

If you have 25 minutes… stream A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving on Apple TV+ because no holiday’s complete without a Charlie Brown special! 

If you have 1 hour… start your virtual Christmas shopping in The Skimm’s virtual Holiday Village. It makes you feel like you’re going from store to store, but you can stay in your stretchy pants and comfy sweatshirts! 

If you have 47 minutes… watch the first episode of Marvel’s newest Disney+ show Hawkeye. Yes, so maybe this isn’t technically a Thanksgiving rec, but the series drops Nov. 24 and it’s going to be good! 

If you have 2 hours… sift through Taste of Home’s “30 Unbelievably Easy Thanksgiving Desserts” blog post and then put your baking skills to the test with one of the recipes. 

If you have 3 hours… Tune into the 95th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Watch the countdown and learn more about who’s in the parade this year on the official parade website. 

If you have 5 hours… read Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen by Laurie Colwin. Part cookbook, part biography, Colwin’s book is the perfect read to complement the smells of Thanksgiving dinner coming from the kitchen.  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department.


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Last Modified: November 24, 2021