Ice Castles & Loon Mountain, NH Trip!

Hey guys! Your girl had a much needed weekend getaway in the mountains; we went to the Ice Castles and snow tubing at Loon Mountain (New Hampshire).

IMG_7786.jpgWe stayed at an airbnb in Twin Mountain, NH; please use my referral so I can save on future trips if you haven’t made an account yet and are planning to anyways (not sponsored btw, you just get $55 and I get $30 off or something).

Things You Should Pack

All kinds of warm winter gear; especially the following:

  • HAND WARMERS
  • Warm boots/shoes (I brought my LL Bean duck boots that I added winter-fur soles to but that lowkey became cold too, luckily I also packed a pair of Uggs and my toes stayed toasty in those!)
  • Snow pants, maybe not needed for Ice Castles but definitely for snow tubing
  • Moisture-wicking underlayers
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On the way to the ice castles!

Check out my vlog above to come along with us on our adventures there + some food places we went to and other random things.

Thanks for watching/reading, I hope you have an /ice/ day!

MA Conference for Women 2019 || Experience & Tips

Hey guys! There were roughly 12,000 attendees at the MA Conference for Women last week and I had the wonderful opportunity to be one of these attendees on behalf of my company! (I am an associate software engineer for those who may not know.)

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At the Reebok “It’s a Woman’s World” Booth in the Exhibition Hall

I took the train into Boston and was at the convention center all day long with booths to see, sessions to attend, and people to meet. When we arrived, we received attendee “swag bags” filled with snacks, a water bottle, the event guidebook notebook, and other miscellaneous items.


Tips on how to make the most of the event:

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luckily I was warned of these, i’m now queen of the event
  • Arrive early: by 7am to head into the line or else you’ll have to spend time outside in the cold waiting to get through security and this way you’ll be one of the first to grab breakfast (free) and hit the booths down in the exhibition hall
  • Skip the coat check–bring a warm enough but lighter jacket to carry or else you’ll have to be in line twice and there’s sooooo many coats in the coat check
  • Use the womens restroom: I know, like isn’t that obvious? They actually convert a bunch of the mens restrooms into womens restrooms for the event, but the permanent womens restrooms have a lot more stalls. I accidentally waited in line for one of the converted restrooms for a long time only to find there were only 3 usable stalls and the other half was urinals!

 

Overview of Events and Sessions I Attended:

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Opening Keynote Session

IMG_6331Featuring Simon Sinek, Amanda Southworth, Yara Shahidi, and others; we were welcomed to a day of reminders that we can kick ass!!!

  • Sinek focused on the infinite game: explaining how learning from our competitor and using what we can study from them could help us become better ourselves and get stronger (and vice versa).
  • Southworth told her story of mental health and how coding not only helped herself but enabled her to help others too.
  • Shahidi is asked a question and answers with how she was taught at an early age about financial independence and how to be smart about money; saving it, spending it, and donating it.

Exhibition Hall (ft. sponsor booths, small business marketplace, and roundtable discussions)

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  • So. Many. Things. Being. Given. Away.
  • And so many photo opportunities!
  • Essentially, I came home with (on top of the swag bag stuff) a T Shirt, schrunchie, button pin, mirror, mints and lip balm, crystal nail file, travel brush and sewing kit in one, pens, magazine, candy, and more!

Unplugged: Reclaiming Balance in a Connected World (POE)

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(from left) Tiffany Schlain, Mary Laura Philpott, and Stephanie Humphrey
    • This was an interesting panel session on unplugging from the social media world, turning 24/7 into 24/6.
    • Tiffany Schlain (filmmaker, founder of The Webby Awards, author) talks about a “tech sabbath” of sorts that her family has done for almost 10 years now where they unplug from their devices for one 24-hour period a week and focus on the present.
    • Mary Laura Philpott (author of I Miss You When I Blink) catches attention from the Type-As of the room, those who love lists and getting things done once they’re started. It’s her journey of accepting that our time is our time and it’s okay to take it back to do what we want.
    • Stephanie Humphrey (technology and lifestyle content creator) discusses how she tries to unplug even with a career that consists of being on social media. Setting time for planning in one period and then scheduling posts is a must.

The Likability Trap: Women, Leadership and the Double-Bind

IMG_6332Alicia Menendez, asked us a question: do you want to be likable or do you want to be successful? Her answer is to ALWAYS. CHOOSE. SUCCESS. People will always either like you or not like you for various reasons and it should not hold you back from reaching your goals.

  • Yvonne Garcia, Minda Harts, and Erica Keswin joined Menendez in discussing their own experiences of having to choose between being liked or being successful in their workplace and the feedback they have sometimes received from it.

Keynote Luncheon: Malala Yousafzai, Tara Westover, Megan Rapinoe

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All of the women involved in the keynotes, panel sessions, and other discussions have all done something to be recognized as leaders, mentors, or just those to look up to. During the keynote luncheon, we also were lucky to hear from Malala Yousafzai, Tara Westover, Megan Rapinoe, and others.

  • Yousafzai spoke of her journey that most of us have heard about (if you need a refresher) and how her father continued to push for her education when extremists who took over their town banned girls from school and how it has developed her into the strong woman she is today. She continues to fight for 12 years of education for girls in countries who are less able to receive the opportunity.
  • Westover joked about how her job is to be a professional narcissist, telling her story about how she was raised in a family that did not believe that the government, education, and other things were genuinely real (instead seen as a conspiracy). She eventually went on to being enrolled and educated at the age of 17 and then went on to get her PhD.
  • Rapinoe was her authentic self with Kara Swisher; it was highly entertaining to listen to them discuss important topics like how Rapinoe was fighting for equal pay among professional soccer players (ex. how the womens soccer team is not compensated the same as the mens soccer team), the upcoming election, and various other topics.

While leaving the convention center, I realized that I was feeling so empowered, a feeling that I had not felt in a while. It makes me want to continue to chase after it all.

I’m hoping to get the chance to continue attending The MA Conference for Women and other events like this! The 2020 Grace Hopper Celebration for Women Technologists is also on my radar and I can’t wait to launch into this potential opportunity!

Raleigh, NC || Exploring & HUGE Life Updates!

Hey guys! Here’s a quick video update I put together; we’re going back to the basics with iMovie because my laptop does not have enough storage to edit on premiere pro for now oops!

I’ve been in North Carolina for 2 months now and between working and going on adventures finally had time to sit down and collect my clips for now!

Life updates:

  • Traveled for myself or Enactus and flew to different interviews (Washington D.C., Chicago, Philadelphia, Kansas City, London, Amsterdam, Raleigh) in 2019 so far!
  • Graduated college with a degree in computer science with a job lined up
  • Got myself and two big checked bags from BOS > RDU
  • Met a lot of cool people and am probably eating a little /too/ good
  • Working on the vlogging thing…

Thanks for watching and I wish you guys the best of luck today, tomorrow, and onward for whatever you are working on!! xx Sami

New Year, Same-mi

cs series (17)Hey guys, here’s to another (and my last) semester of this CS series of blog posts!

Hopefully you will HIIT–or should I say reach–all of your professional and personal goals for this year. There’s so many things to always keep improving on but it’s always easier when you break things down to smaller changes or achievements.

Here’s a picture of one of my personal goals as can be seen in my university’s Wellness Center:

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“This Year I Want to ______”

One day I will be able to get up there without being lifted…alright I’ve gotta get back to practicing my jumps.

Best of Luck,

Sami

Up in the gym working on samFitnessed

Hey guys! Something I’ve been thinking about for a while finally became real, I created @samfitnessed on Instagram.

Feel free to follow me if you may be intimidated by the weights at the gym, need ways to stay fit outdoors or at home, or are just along for adventures; this is the fitness account for you!

View this post on Instagram

“Do you really lift if you don’t have a fitness IG?” For those who are intimidated by the weights at the gym, need ways to stay fit outdoors or at home, or are just along for adventures; this is the fitness account for you! It’s nice to meet you, I’m Sam! You can check out my main IG @sambarrassed as well. Pc: @yllekelly__ . // Current goal: being able to deadlift a plate (I learned that’s 45lb/20kg on each side plus the weight of the bar itself) . // Fitness history: I’ve been going to gyms on and off for years, going on lots of adventures, or doing at-home workouts but never tried lifting until recently (going with friends really helps)! . . #gym #workout #fitness #lifting #hiking #adventures #instalove #girlswholift #me #newinstagram #fitstagram #weights #cardio #climbing #jumping #blogilates #workoutvideos #motivation #progress #motivational #havefun #aeriereal

A post shared by Samantha Tran (@samfitnessed) on

Day in the Life of a Tech Intern || Video

Ever wondered what it was like to work for a tech company? Here’s a perspective from an entry-level/intern position at ten24 Digital Solutions!

Hi I’m Sam, a rising senior in uni! Throughout the past ~2 months I’ve been working at a company downtown and brought my camera to work one day to vlog what it’s like.

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I truly appreciate how welcoming everyone at ten24 was, it makes it hard for me to believe I’ve only been a part of the team for two months so far! I didn’t even know this was possible but my love for technology grew even more through learning to use different software tools that I wouldn’t have known existed until now.

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This is the 1st video of my internship series, feel free to stay tuned for more including ‘what’s in my bag’ and internship advice.

Shout out to Nina for helping me film that ending and eventually climbing into the backseat for a better shot haha!

Side note; working here has it’s perks like being in super-walking distance to city events and local coffee shops, lunch spots, and more!

Until next time, I’ll

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Best,

Sami