About Liesl


Global Security & Intelligence Studies

My favorite class was Microeconomics with Dr. Carreras.

Denver & Octoberwest!

Holy fudge, how this school year has just whizzed by! The dreaded midterm week is upon us already. Which also means that we are halfway done with this semester, which is crazy. It seems like I blogged last week, when in reality I blogged a month ago! It has definitely been an exciting month. Our Riddle volleyball team had a tournament in Denver, CO the week after I blogged last. We were able to play at Johnson & Wales University (a specialized culinary school) and pull out a few wins. It was so fun. I just love going to Denver, especially because it’s so beautiful up there. The fact that we won made it even better, along with the fact that we got to eat at my former teammate’s house and see her family! That just made it that much more fun! Thank you, Lacey family, for having us at your home and taking pictures at the tournament! We always love seeing you all! :]

Great pictures taken by Julie Lacey! Thank you! :]

Since our tournament in Denver, Riddle had a what’s called our Career Expo as a part of Octoberwest, where different companies and agencies come to ERAU talking to students about career and internship opportunities. The whole Activity Center is packed with booths of representatives, and students dress in business-like attire to try to impress future employers. It was very exciting to talk to people who are interested in recruiting students from such a specialized school. Overall, I say it was a success.

Octoberwest in general was also a success. We had a group called the Mural Mice come and do an awesome chalk drawing on the sidewalk in front of the Student Union, clubs and different groups painted our Spirit Rock, we had a parade on Saturday, we had a Block Party (complete with face painting and carnival food!), and my personal favorite, the hypnotist Bruce McDonald. Bruce McDonald was my favorite because he took normally shy students and, in his words, “Let them show us what’s inside their creative imagination!” Students who were hypnotized showed the student body just how awesome their ballet skills are, showed us how straight a row of chairs really can be (in their hypnotized state, Bruce McDonald told them that they would win a billion dollars if they kept chairs all in a perfect row), and showed us how good their singing skills really were! The best part: they don’t remember a thing. It was hilarious for the audience and even the hypnotist couldn’t help but let out a few chuckles. He comes every year, and it is definitely worth it to go and watch!

Here are a few of the people who volunteered to be hypnotized. Bruce McDonald definitely did a great job. It was hilarious! (Picture courtesy of Greg Finn. Thank you!)

These past few weeks have truly been memorable ones, and after midterms (when I can relax again) I hope to keep making great memories here at Embry-Riddle!

“We do not remember days, we remember moments.”

-Cesare Pavese

Hand Cramps and Flame-Throwers

Well, it’s that time of the year again… where I blog about the beginning of school!

And where I put up pictures of my volleyball team, since that is pretty much what my life revolves around right now!

(Well, that and homework. Woo hoo.)

This semester I’m taking a bunch of fun classes. I’m taking Chinese three, which is pretty tough. I love learning Chinese, but after a while of studying all of the characters start to look like each other. It can be pretty frustrating to say the least. But, it’s so worth it (after your hand stops cramping from all the character writing and goes back to its normal shape)!

I’m also taking two classes with Dr. Jones, History of Modern Europe and Studies in Global Intelligence. I like both of these classes so far. There’s a lot of reading, which is okay with me because I love books. Give me a book over a math problem anyday! I’m also taking Dr. Henner’s Government class, which has proved to be very interesting so far. Along with these classes, I’m taking Abnormal Psychology with Professor Reybach. This class is really fun, because I love learning about psychology. It just makes so much sense to me. My professor makes this class really fun as well, because our class is so small and she interacts with all of us so much during class.

And of course, volleyball is as demanding as ever. In the past ten days, we have played ten games! The first weekend of school, we went to one of my teammate’s hometown, Portland, OR, to play a tournament at Lewis & Clark University. It was so pretty there, and our team got to take a tour of the FBI building there where our teammate Sarah Galeai’s mom works. It was AWESOME. Our team also had a blast with Sarah’s family! Her family is traditionally from Somoa, and so we had an awesome barbeque complete with island music and even a flame thrower… guy! (Pardon my lack of knowledge of the terminology!)

Here we are learning to “shake our booties”! Thank you, hula guy!

Last weekend (the second weekend of the year) we went to San Diego, CA to play a tournament at Point Loma University. It was beautiful there as well.

Here we are playing Point Loma. BLOCK! 🙂

For anyone here at Riddle, our next game is on Saturday, at the Eagle Gym, at 4 pm! I want to see you ALL there!

And that is my life from two weeks ago until now! Gotta love the chaos!

“If you have health, you probably will be healthy, and if you have health and happiness, you have all the wealth you need, even if it is not all you want.”

-Elbert Hubbard

My FAVES of Prescott (Good Eats)

Well, as everyone knows, it is summertime. Which means if you’re not taking summer classes, you don’t have to go to class. Which means that I cannot write about my fabulous adventures in my classes, since I’m at home for the summer. Sooo, I decided that I am going to write a series of blogs about my FAVORITE places to go and do in Prescott, for all of you prospective students who want to know what kind of a town Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University resides in. This one is all about my favorite restaurants in Prescott.

Everyone loves Olive Garden, of course, but there are more obscure places to eat that are awesome! I love to go down to Whiskey Row and eat at Murphy’s Restaurant. My grandparents and I always go there to eat when they come up to visit me! It’s a sit-down restaurant with really good steaks. =)

I also love to go to Gurley St. Grill, also on Whiskey Row. This place has fantastic burgers and sweet potato fries! It’s also a sit-down restaurant, but it’s more of a relaxed atmosphere with lots of TVs showing sports games and such.

And of course, there has to be at least one pizza place in the mix somewhere! I love going to Bill’s Pizza (again, haha… Whiskey Row!) It is such a chill place to go, and it has AMAZING pizza! My favorite is the one with alfredo sauce and artichoke hearts on it. It has every kind of pizza that you could possibly imagine, except they have goofy names so you have to read through the whole description. But it’s an awesome place to go and hang out with friends.

And of course, there are the classics: Texas Roadhouse, Wildflower Bread Company, IHOP, Streets of New York, Applebee’s, Cocoa’s, and Buffalo Wild Wings! So pretty much, whatever you are in the mood for, there’s a restaurant for your needs in Prescott within a twenty mile radius of Embry-Riddle! You gotta love that when you need a study break before a big test and you’re craving some pancakes, or pizza, or pie, or whatever! I just love being in Prescott!

Next time, I’ll write about all of the great things you can do for fun in Prescott! Woohoo!

“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.”

-Luciano Pavarotti & William Wright, Pavarotti

Sophomore Year: Complete!

Wow! I can’t believe that finals are over and it’s FINALLY summer! Except it’s snowing in the middle of May in Pinetop, AZ… but that doesn’t surprise me all that much. I am so excited to be a junior at ERAU next semester! The time has SERIOUSLY flown by soo fast, my head is spinning.  I thought that since I’m one year older now, that I’d give you all a list of things that I’ve learned in my sophomore year in college.

1. The library is your best friend.  Forever. BFF. Remember that.

2. Chartwells, as much as I avoided it while living on campus, is actually not that bad. (And when you have no food in your fridge and no meal plan, it looks and smells delicious.)

3. Pay your rent and bills, on time when you can. Yup… that’s a big one.

4. Get to know lots of people in your classes. It comes in handy when you leave for a volleyball trip and you need homework help. 😀

5. The Student Union is a rockin’ place to be. Since I couldn’t go home in between classes because I live too far away, I would spend tons of time playing pool and making a ton of friends!

6. If you live off campus, still remember to check your school mailbox every once in a while. When you wait to open it until a whole semester has passed, it WILL explode on you.

7. Don’t be afraid to go into your professor’s office during office hours and ask for help. They are happy to help you if they see you are working hard and honestly trying to get a good grade.

8. Night classes are not for the weak. If you take a night class, be prepared to be strong and stay awake. I brought snacks to help me focus through the two and a half hour class, from 6:30-9pm.

9. DO NOT park in the residence hall parking lot if you live off campus. Bad idea. Unless of course you want a ticket from security… then be my guest.

10. College is supposed to be hard, and you have to study a lot to do well, but remember… it’s also the best time of your life. College is fun… don’t stress too much. You have to enjoy yourself, and ERAU gives out plenty of opportunities to do so.

So, these are the lessons that I have learned and relearned my sophomore year in college. I hope that everyone out there reading this can take what I’ve learned and apply it to their college experience, hopefully at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University!

“Laugh longer, live louder.”


The Pressures of Finals

Whew!  Finals are ALMOST over.  I’ve gotten the harder ones out of the way thank GOODNESS.  Study time has literally taken up most of my time since last Friday.  Not kidding.  I had a Personality and Profiling final Monday morning, I took my Chinese and Observing Asian cultures final yesterday, this morning I took my U.S. Foreign Policy final, and tomorrow is my Forensics final.  So it’s cram time!  My roommate and I (like every other student at Riddle) have had our moments of procrastination, though.  Such as: watching A Very Potter Musical on YouTube, attempting to flip eggs while we are frying them (which was actually quite hilarious!), singing Disney songs randomly in the middle of the night, and taking random grocery shopping trips to get out of the house.  Ohh, finals.  This is what you do to us.  Sooo, we’re pretty much sleep deprived and can spout out just about anything on any of our study guides.  Which is good, because we’ll do great on our finals!  We’ll only be slap-happy for a little while longer!  Whoohooo.

The egg toss up…

And here’s the miss…

And the SPLAT!!

Oh the pressures of finals week.  My brain feels like that egg: splattered.  BUT, it will all be worth it when I get good grades in all of my classes!  That’s the good thing about finals at Riddle: if you work hard and do your very best, you will be rewarded, one way or another!  So even though it’s tough, it’s a challenge that is so worth it.  I love being challenged.  I love when I overcome obstacles and can say, “I did it.”  Impossible isn’t in my dictionary, and I’m sure that everyone who comes to Riddle feels the exact same way.  We work hard no matter how hard classes get, because we know that someday all of our hard work will pay off.  So, BRING IT, FINALS! 🙂

“When we long for life without difficulties, remind us that oaks grow strong in contrary winds and diamonds are made under pressure.”

-Peter Marshall

Preview Day and Derby Days!

As Cassie already mentioned in her blog, we got to work together on Preview Day this past week which was a BLAST!!  I just loved being able to work with some of the coolest people at ERAU!  Granted my fingers did get a little tired from all the balloon tying, but hey, that’s okay!  I had a great time with Cassie and people I got to meet on Saturday, and I hope that the prospective students enjoyed it almost as much as I did!

Unfortunately I was not awake enough at 6:30 am to grab my camera so I could take pictures with Cassie, but Lauren always has her camera, so this is the Lower Hangar during the Activities Fair after my afternoon shift was over.

This week heralded in one of ERAU’s famous traditions on campus: Sigma Chi’s Derby Days!  Derby Days is a week-long competition between teams of girls (aka sororities, sports teams, etc.) and it is so much fun to be involved in anyway, but it also helps raise money for cancer which makes it about twenty times better!  All week, we’ve been having competitions and dressing up for different days of the week to earn points for our team.  I am on the Volleyball team, and my roommate Lauren is on Alpha Xi Delta’s team, so we’ve been documenting our awesome costumes together!

Sleeping Beauty and Leonardo!

Western Wednesday!

Here’s my Derby Days team (which is most of my volleyball team) with our “Coach” who is from Sigma Chi.

This is my (orange) team and Lauren’s (pink) team playing Dodgeball in our “Decathalon” portion of the competition.  THAT was fun!

Tonight, the activity was “Survival Game”, where Sigma Chi brothers would run around campus with different animal names taped to their backs, and we would have to either tag them or hit them with socks to get points (pretty much like an arcade hunting game, only it took over the entire ERAU campus!).  It was pretty epic. 

There’s also a Penny Wars portion of the competition that raises money for the cure for cancer.  Each team has a jug to put money in, pennies and bills are negatives, so the point is to get as much silver money in as you can and sabotoge everyone else by putting in tons of pennies!  The good news right now is that Volleyball has the most coins in our jug.  The bad news is… they’re all pennies.  We’ve been sabotoged already.  That’s alright… we’ll pull ahead!  And all the money goes for a great cause anyway, so either way, we win!  (However, if you go to Riddle and you want Volleyball to actually win, not just metaphorically… remember: silver coins.  Thanks!)

So the rest of this week will be very, VERY interesting, so I will update you all with the Derby Days winners at the end of the week!

“I am no stranger to healthy competition- working hard and playing hard.” (especially when it comes to working for a good cause! :))

-Richard Branson

Spring Has Sprung

Well, it’s finally SPRING! And four weeks from today is the last day of classes! I can’t believe how quickly this year has flown by! I’m almost halfway done with college, which absolutely blows my mind. My classes this year have been awesome. I also registered for my classes for the fall. I am taking Chinese 3, Studies in Global Intelligence 1, History of Modern Europe, Introduction to the US Legal System, and Deceptions. I am so excited. The good thing about going to Riddle is that you have to take only a few general classes and the rest are completely focused on your degree, so you don’t have to have two full years of classes you couldn’t care less about, like at other community colleges or universities. Right at the beginning I was able to take classes that were pertinent to my major, which I absolutely loved, and it just keeps getting better from there!

ERAU Volleyball is getting better every day as well! This past weekend we played in a spring tournament at University of Arizona in Tucson. We left at five in the morning to play a nine o’clock game, and we played all day to keep in shape for our season in the fall. There were a lot of teams from nearby schools at the tournament, like NAU, ASU, UNM, NMSU, Yavapai, GCU, and of course, U of A. It was a blast for our team, and was a blast from the past for our assistant coach, Jill Blasczyk, who played for U of A when she was going to school there. We even got to see pictures of her playing in the hallways of the stadium. What a stud. After the tourney, we got to hang out at one of the restaurants on the U of A campus called Gentle Ben’s, where pretty much the whole school was rooting for their team in the March Madness basketball game. I think Jill was cheering louder than everyone… ha!

Here we are after the tournament in the U of A stadium. Go Eagles!

I just love the spring semester. This spring tournament was a blast, and I’m excited to be registered for the fall semester, and now I have to get ready for…. FINALS! Gotta love it!

“Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.”

-Anthony J. D’Angelo

Chinese New Year’s Field Trip!

Any of you potential GSIS majors thinking about taking the Chinese language, my recommendation is… DO IT!  It is SOO much fun!  Yang Laoshi is teaching me so much.  Even though it can be pretty tough sometimes, it is so worth it.  I found out how much fun it really is knowing Chinese when Yang Laoshi and Chen Laoshi took us students on a field trip… to the Chinese Cultural Center in Phoenix for the Chinese New Year!  (Just so you know, it’s the year of the rabbit!)  All of us students packed onto a fancy bus (that was really more like a plane, because the teachers handed out drinks for everyone!!) and headed to the valley.  We watched a movie on the way down (because there were TVs on the bus!), but the real fun started when we got off the bus.  The festival was AMAZING.  Tons of Chinese vendors were packed into the square selling everything from Buddha figurines to traditional Chinese fans to stuffed panda bears.  Just the atmosphere was amazing!  A picture is worth a thousand words, so I’ll let you decide for yourself!

Yang Laoshi and Chen Laoshi are so sweet!

Dragon… RAWR!  Haha.  Don’t worry guys… he didn’t eat me.

Tai Chi!  And thanks to volleyball, I know some of it!  WOOT!

These fish were on sale.  The cheapest was $20, and the most expensive was $40!

There were probably hundreds of these little vendors.

I bought a little dragon to “keep my apartment safe.”  It’s worked so far!

These guys just ran by with a huge dragon in celebration of the new year!

The food market was pretty intense, if you know what I mean.

Teri and I!  We got to catch up while wandering around the square.

Notice that the black and white rocks are formed into a Yin-Yang.  Cool huh!

So overall the whole thing was just a fantastic experience.  I found out just how awesome it is to know Chinese when I asked the vendors how much the item was… in Chinese!… and they got so excited and, well, to be honest, spoke too fast for me to understand them… but still.  It was just a really great experience to be able to see how Chinese is going to help me later in my life and in my future profession.  I am so glad that I chose to take Chinese!  There is even a Chinese track in the GSIS program for any and all interested!  But for now, 新年快乐!  Happy (Chinese) New Year!

“The firm, the enduring, the simple, and the modest are near to virtue.”


What’s New at ERAU

Well, it’s that time of year again… volleyball spring training!  Fun right?  Well this morning my team and I all went into the wrestling room and did P90X for about an hour.  Let me tell you… I am DEFINITELY going to feel that tomorrow.  We’re not in the Activity Center this week for practice because over Christmas break, a pipe (or pipes) broke and totally messed up our gym floor!  That’s not the only place that got hit with burst pipes… my apartment complex got hit too!  My friend’s pipes (who also lives in the complex) burst as well because Prescott is SOOO COOLLDDD!!  Luckily Lauren and my pipes were intact when we got back, but it hasn’t warmed up any since then!  The other day, it was 8 degrees.  NOT including wind chill.  I thought that my face was going to freeze off, but luckily it didn’t! 🙂

This is how ERAU looked over Christmas.  Luckily it isn’t AS cold now, but it’s pretty dang close!  Photo courtesy of Wynter Schneider Krisha.

On Tuesday, the cold did not stop people from going to the speaker at Embry-Riddle, who gave a speech on the “12 Steps to Diversity.”  I thought that the speaker, Mohammed Bilal, did a fantastic job.  Not only was he on Real World on MTV, his poems/raps were so deep and I loved what he had to say about the world all connecting on a more personal level.  I’m so glad that I braved the cold to listen to his speech.  It was SOO worth it!

Here was the advertisement for the speech.  And yes, there were drinks and cookies provided… oh I love ERAU.

“There is only one success – to spend your life your own way.”

-Christopher Morley


I most definitely am going to have a fantastic semester.  One of the classes that I am super excited about is my Forensics class, with Dr. Robert Baker.  He is the program director for Global Security and Intelligence Studies, and is working on a new track for students in GSIS called Security Operations.  Here is what the Embry-Riddle website says about him: 

“Professor Baker served four decades in law enforcement, corporate security and government security positions and is a expert in aviation security.”

And he’s my teacher.  Awesome!  My first encounter with him was last semester, at the 6th Annual National Security and Intelligence Symposium, where he addressed the audience with a speech on airport security which I thought was very interesting.  Now I get to have a class with him!  A class that is VERY interesting.  So far we’ve learned about fingerprints, their types and how to fingerprint someone.  Last class period, my friend and fellow teammate on the volleyball team Darja and I got to dip each others fingers in ink and actually fingerprint each other.  The ink wouldn’t come off of my hands for about twenty-four hours, but that’s okay!  I learned that I have loops on my fingers, and Darja has whirls.  Those are the most common.  My little brother (who is ten and brilliant) told me BEFORE I even took the class that he had arches, and told me only about 5% of the world’s population has them.  And… he was right.  Of course.  Good job Levi!

I’m pretty sure that Dr. Baker has this exact same picture hanging up in our Forensics room.  Pretty sure.  Then again, fingerprints kinda look the same when you’re just starting to learn about them… Haha.

This is definitely something that I like learning about!  I can’t wait to go to our crime scene during the class and look for fingerprints!  Oh, how I love my school.

“Don’t wait.  The time will never be just right.”

-Napolean Hill