Category Archives: Academics

Choosing Your Major

By: Ally Romanes

Choosing a major can be difficult. If you’re not sure what you want to study just yet, don’t panic. It’s normal for students to start college without knowing what they want to major in or what career path they want to take. Here are some things to think about and do while you choose.  

Take Career Tests 

If you aren’t sure yet what you want to major in, take a career test. There are many free online tests available where you can find out your career path. Also at liberal arts schools, such as PUC, you can use your General Education credits to test different departments to see which one fits for you. 

The PUC Career & Counseling Center is also available to help you clarify your interests, strengths, and values as well as provide valuable information about various majors and career options. If you have questions about your options or don’t know what to major in, make an appointment to talk with our counselor, and begin your career exploration process. 

Know Your Interests 

Your interests are important to think about when you’re choosing a major. If you don’t like what you’re studying, you’re going to be miserable. You won’t find your classes interesting, which can lack your motivation to study. It’s essential you are actually interested in what you’re studying. 

Know Your Abilities 

Think about what you’re good at when choosing a major. If you’re stronger in math and science, think of majors that circle around those subjects. If you’re stronger in English and the arts, consider the majors in those departments. Don’t choose a major with classes you will struggle in. You should be confident you will be able to do well in your work in the area of your study. 

Know Your Goals 

You might have specific goals you want to achieve, like becoming a teacher or doctor. Once you have a general goal in mind, that will help lead you into a major that fits with your goals. 

Research

After knowing your interests, skills, and goals, you should start researching jobs that align with them. Find out what types of jobs there are for your career and what classes you need to take for them. This should help you narrow down your options so you can start thinking about jobs that intrigue you and what majors could help you get those jobs. 

Talk To Others 

If you know people that work in the fields you might be interested in, talk to them and get their perspective on their job and what that career path entails. Talk to your academic adviser and share your interests. Their job is to help you find your right career path and connect you with professors that teach in your desired department. 

Trying to decide what path to take towards your future can be overwhelming. If you really don’t know what you want to major in, that’s okay! Make the most of fulfilling your college credits by taking a variety of classes to see which ones interest you. Talk to other students and your professors and of course, praying about it!

 

Talking with Ralph Edward Valdez, Volunteer at Napa Covid Testing Site

Having completed Spanish for Health Care Professionals last quarter, nursing student Ralph Edward Valdez from American Canyon is putting it to good use! Last week he reached out to share his recent experience.

 “I applied for the Medical Reserve Corps since my nursing class doesn’t have clinicals this quarter and was assigned to work as a Nurse at a COVID testing site (they provided appropriate training to all students from the MRC) in Napa. And started work a couple of weeks ago. This past Saturday, none of the staff could speak Spanish, so upon arrival, I immediately told them I would handle all translations. I was able to successfully explain the process to the Spanish speaking patients! More importantly, I was able to keep in particular, one of the patients, from panicking and feeling overwhelmed with their situation. Up until now, I hadn’t really fully understood the importance of being multilingual, especially in a setting such as this.”

We wanted to learn more about Ralph’s experiences at PUC and volunteering and he was kind enough to chat with us!  

First of all, you’re a nursing major so I assume you want to be a nurse! Have you always wanted to be one?

Once upon a time, I wanted to go to med school to be a pediatric oncologist. It wasn’t until the end of my senior year in high school that my senior project mentor told me about one of her own son’s battle with cancer. She said that undoubtedly, despite the negativity of the situation, the nurses never ceased to be beacons of hope for not just her son, but their whole family. She said it was the nurses who were at her son’s side every day that kept them with a positive outlook. 

What has been your favorite class you’ve taken at PUC so far? 

I’ll preface with that I haven’t had many classes at PUC, what with being a transfer student, and all that. My favorite class would be a toss-up between Spanish for SPAN 105 with Profe (Doctora) Gregorutti and BIOL 102  with Dr. Vance. I had them during different quarters.

You volunteer at a COVID testing site in Napa, what made you decide to do that?

Truthfully, I did not expect to be working on the frontlines. I happened to be watching the local news when the reporters were talking about the opportunity to work with the Health Corps in California. I immediately expressed my interest and fill out the necessary forms. I thought I would get called into work at a local hospital or a clinic working with ‘non-COVID’ patients, doing simple tasks like taking general vitals and working with RNs and CNAs. The next thing I knew, I was offered an assignment to work at the then soon-to-open drive-thru COVID-19 testing site. It definitely took me by surprise, but I took the offer. Of course, I was a little bit apprehensive at first, but during our first meeting, it was great to see all of us on the medical staff establishing the process for testing, crossing our T’s and dotting our I’s.

 Can you describe your typical work shift? 

My typical shift begins with me signing in and checking/logging my temperature. Then myself and the rest of the “swabbing” team washes our hands and get donned in full PPE. We then head on to the designated “hot zone,” prep our station for swabbing, and begin. We work in two-person teams with one person performing the swab and the other prepping and safely packaging the samples. Most of the time I’m the one assisting, but I occasionally perform swabs myself. The testing site tests on average, about 350-400 people a day, with my shift typically completing 200+ of the tests. Afterward, we clean up our station, gather the tests, and head over to the decontamination zone where we take a mini chemical bath, doff our PPE, and wash our hands again before checking/logging our temperatures and signing out. 

In (almost) Full PPE

What has been the most valuable thing you’ve learned during your time there? 

The most valuable thing I learned was how, especially in our community, the importance of being bilingual. It’s one thing to ease people’s potential fears with illnesses, but it really put things into perspective for me when I encountered my first patient who could only speak Spanish. They were evidently fearful, having not heard much from the news. Everything they’d heard was pretty much secondhand from people who could translate for them, but none of the medical professionals. I worked with the RN to explain the whole situation to them, all the way to how to interpret their results, what to expect, and more, making sure to note how their culture would be impacted by COVID-19. Once I explained everything, of course, there was a little apprehension, but overall they were happy they could finally understand what was actually going on around them, and what to do/how to interpret their test results.

You said you just completed Spanish for Health Care Professionals, was that required for your degree or did you decide to take it for another reason?

SPAN 105 is not required for my degree, but I thank professor Lorie Johns for making it known to me that it was an option. I took Spanish classes in elementary and high school, so I was versed in textbook phrases and whatnot, but not with regards to health care. Given that a big part of the demographic in Napa is Spanish-speaking, I figured that it would be best that I learn healthcare-related lingo.

Being bilingual clearly came in handy during the past few months at the testing site. Can you tell us about that experience? 

I kind of explained it above already. I’ll add, however, that I’m the only Spanish speaker available to work on Saturdays. I can only imagine what it would be like to go and have an invasive test done, all the while with no one being able to explain the process to me. It’d definitely be a scary experience 

What advice would you like to give other students?

Broaden your horizons! Understand that, especially in the healthcare field, it’s not just about the Golden Rule (Treat others the way you want to be treated). There’s also the Platinum Rule: “Treat others the way they want to be treated.” This is a big difference between cultural competence and cultural humility. This doesn’t just apply to healthcare as well. Live it in your day to lives. Be mindful of others. 

Ok, now a couple fun questions.

Tell us your favorite movie, book, song. 

Favorite movie(s) since it depends on the genre

  • Call Me By Your Name (the film adaptation of Andre Aciman’s book)
  • Koe no Katachi (A Silent Voice in English): A Japanese anime film that discusses the difficult topics of depression, bullying, suicide, and love.

What are you binge-watching right now?

As an avid fan of anime, I usually am binge-watching most shows that are being simulcasted each season.

 The first place you’d like to eat out at once it’s safe to do so?

Anywhere I can get Korean BBQ! Right before the pandemic, I was actually planning to go with some friends of mine.

 

Why The Student-Faculty Ratio Is Important 

By: Ally Romanes 

Having a good or low student-faculty ratio is a statistic college marketers love to plaster all over their websites and marketing pieces. It’s a stat PUC is known to brag about, (12:1!). But what does it actually mean and why should you care about it?

PUC is a small family community campus with a 12:1 student-faculty ratio, which means there is one faculty for every 12 students. This allows students and faculty an actual opportunity to get to know each other on a one-on-one basis which is something you miss when attending state schools with large lecture classes. Here are just a few of the benefits attending a smaller school like PUC affords you.

Get The Help You Need 

It’s great to be able to get one-on-one instruction from your professors. A huge benefit of attending PUC is the professors actually teach their classes. All classes are taught by professors, not by teaching assistants. Small class sizes also allow professors the ability to experiment with different learning styles, which benefit those who don’t always learn in conventional ways. 

Make Connections 

PUC’s 12:1 ratio is great for your faculty relationships as well as your peer relationships. In smaller classes, it’s easier to get to know your classmates, find a study partner, and work in groups. It also makes getting to know each student a lot easier for the professors. Making connections is a big deal as you get older! Imagine how easy it will be to get a recommendation letter when each professor knows you by name and can truthfully say they know how hard you work!

Participate!

Smaller classes mean you will have way more of a chance to share your opinions, ask questions, and stand-out in your classes. That might seem terrible to some of you right now but it’s a huge benefit. And for those of you who are shy, remember, smaller classes mean you’ll know your classmates and professors a lot better so you’re likely to feel much more comfortable with them.

Compete Where It Counts

At PUC you only need to compete where it counts, in Intramurals! PUC doesn’t want students having to compete for their professor’s time or educational opportunities and having small classes makes that possible. 

Join A Family

PUC is a family. The moment you step foot on campus, you’re a Pioneer for life. When you attend PUC, the faculty and staff not only know your name, they really care about you as a person and as you work towards your educational goals, you will find your professors become more than just teachers—they become your mentors, friends, and guides for the journey ahead. 

Interested in joining our Pioneers family? The online application is quick, easy to complete, and always free. Reach out to the Admissions office with any questions you might have by calling (800) 862-7080, option 2, or emailing admissions@puc.edu. 

Don’t wait—apply to PUC now!

 

Everything & Nothing: Sharing Music During COVID

By Becky St. Clair

Alice Walker once said, “Whenever you are creating beauty around you, you are restoring your own soul.” 

Over the past several months we have watched the world come alive with art. Musicians on balconies, serenading their neighbors; artists creating on their walls at home and sharing it via timelapse on YouTube; influencers using their writing skills to encourage, uplift, and inspire. It’s the arts that got the world through quarantine. The arts restored people’s souls. And PUC’s department of music could do no less for its students.

It didn’t take long after everyone went home to wait out COVID-19 for reality to hit: We missed music. Spring quarter is generally the busiest for the department, and 2020 was no different. However, the “busy” looked very different. Like every other campus department, the music department scrambled to make sure all of its courses were available and viable online, that students could access everything they needed to, and that effective learning was still taking place. 

Once those logistical details were ironed out, the question remained: How will we make and share music this quarter?

Music is more than just a discipline. It’s more than a major or a college department or background to a movie or a road trip. Music is a community. It’s a lifeline. It’s an expression of heart and soul. And we needed all of that more than ever during spring 2020. 

Like many others across the disciplines, our gazes turned toward Zoom. Deciding we had nothing to lose, we figured, Why not?! And on the evening of Wednesday, June 3, the music faculty and staff gathered on Zoom with a few community attendees and several music majors for our first-ever virtual General Student Recital. 

Between the six pieces performed that night viewers enjoyed the (sometimes somewhat garbled) sounds of piano, voice, violin, and viola. 

“I didn’t think it was possible to do a recital over Zoom,” admits Asher Raboy, acting chair and resident artist in the department of music. “And yet, it was a lovely evening. I felt so much joy seeing our students perform, and I sense they had a similar experience. I am so glad we did it.”

Natalie Fode, 2020 nursing graduate, and senior piano major performed Debussy’s “Clair de Lune” from her empty church in Yountville, California, where her husband is a pastor.

“I really enjoyed getting to do our GSR this quarter, despite the odd circumstances,” she says. “It gave me something to practice for and kept me motivated. Seeing and hearing my friends play was so special; they are truly wonderful musicians.”

Fode’s performance was gorgeous, and just the right speed for a contemplative and peaceful piece like “Clair de Lune.”

Her favorite part of the recital?

“Definitely when Lewis’ little niece sang along with him!”

Lewis Govea, a junior voice major in the pre-pharmacy program, sang from his home in Southern California. What no one saw coming was the adorableness of his nearly two-years-old niece stealing the show by standing right in front of the camera during Lewis’ performance, and trying to sing like her uncle. Lewis held it together, though, and finished strong with his Italian and French pieces. 

Michael Siahaan, voice major, presented two pieces, one live and one pre-recorded, the former a classic vocal performance piece in Italian and the latter a fun and familiar tune from the 1950s musical, My Fair Lady

James Woodward, senior violin and viola major, also presented two compositions, one Schubert, one Vivaldi. His live solo performance was beautiful and well-executed, despite his camera slipping while he played. Quickly setting it back up during a pause in the music, Woodward carried on like any great musician would.

The point was not that it was perfect. Because it couldn’t be. “Perfect” would have been in person, live, applause echoing throughout Paulin Recital Hall, and we all would have enjoyed Ghirardelli brownies and sparkling punch after the show. “Perfect” would have been together.

The point was that we made and shared music, we saw each other’s faces, and we reminded ourselves of what it is we truly love about our music, our community, and our department. 

So, in reality, maybe it was “perfect” after all. 

Govea shared his own feelings about the recital, and, honestly, he says it best, so I’ll let him close this post. 

GSR was, in short, everything I needed, but nothing I wanted. I wanted to sing in a big wide open space. I wanted to bow to the masses. I wanted to have a real accompanist. I wanted the nightmare of separation to be over. What I got was family. I got a reminder that I still had my community. I got a wake-up call. 

GSR this quarter was an outpouring of virtual yet tangible love and support. I got to see my music family play and sing like nothing was wrong. We got the opportunity to do things we never thought we would have to do. I got to sing for people who literally were only there to listen and support and encourage. 

The reality of GSR is nothing compared to what it meant for me as a musician. GSR was a success, and not just because my one-year-old niece had her debut performance, but because it stripped the music down to what it was intended to do: be a beacon for those who listen and love.

Stay in tune with the department of music by signing up for their monthly e-newsletter. Email music@puc.edu to be added to the list.)

 

A Day In The Life Of the Remote-Learner: Aileen Kurts 

Hi! My name is Aileen Kurts and I would say with everything going on right now, life is pretty crazy. I just finished my sophomore year, majoring in English Pre-Med and many students probably know me as their favorite Grind barista🤣. I’m also a biology TA, a senator, and President Pro-Tempore of PUC’s student senate. Doing all that remotely has certainly been interesting. 

My days at home were a bit more relaxed than when I’m on campus, but somehow I’ve felt even more tired here. I think it’s because I miss all the people and energy I get from seeing my friends. Now I spend my time looking at a screen, whether it’s in class, watching TV, Facetiming friends, and most importantly studying. It got pretty tiresome so I started some new hobbies at home. I’ve gotten really into DIY projects. I’ve painted my room, put up shelves over my desk, and painted my bathroom. I’ve been working on so many more plans I hope to accomplish while at home for the summer. 

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I also started cooking a lot. My mom is a nurse who is self-isolating in her room so I cook so she doesn’t have to come out. It’s not a lot of fun not getting to hang out with my mom, but sometimes I get to sit outside her door. We’ll talk, make jokes and it reminds me that being home during the pandemic isn’t so bad. I haven’t lived at home for this long since I was 15 so it has definitely been an adjusting period for me. One of the best things about living at home though is getting to see my dogs every day.

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My school days were often a little crazy as I had five classes each day with labs, meetings, and a ton of homework. I decided to work more on self-care while I have the time to focus a bit more on myself. This means some days I take a long nap, a nice bath, or just read a book. If you’re interested, here’s how my days as a remote learner at PUC went. 

7:45 a.m. – On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays I had all of my classes. This includes 8 a.m. Organic Chemistry (no science class should be this early). I have a dream of waking up at 7 a.m. but this is still just a dream so I would wake up 15 minutes before my class starts, drink a cup of water, and open my computer to start my day.  

8:00 a.m. – OChem with Professor Hilario. Surprisingly I never slept through this one!  

9:00 a.m. – Physics with Professor Robertson. 

10:00 a.m. – Survey of Lit with Professor Gill. Being an English major while studying pre-med means I get to have the best of both worlds. I get to study what I love and still go into the career I want. It means I have some pretty hard classes but it’s all worth it when I’m studying things I love.  

11:00 a.m. – Christian Beliefs with Professor Kim.

Noon – At this time I would be overcome with exhaustion from classes. I would either take a nap or cook. I do all the shopping to limit exposure to my parents so I get to buy all the things I need to make new and healthy meals.

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 2:00-5:00 p.m. – I had two labs: physics and O-chem. I would spend a few hours working on my online labs. It’s hard having to do hands-on learning on the computer, but our lab instructors do the best they can by sending us videos of the lab.  

5:00 p.m. – I would get some dinner, take a break and watch Full House and let my brain rest. I also used that time to get to talk to my boyfriend, Samuel. We’ve found some creative ways to overcome long distances. We use Microsoft Teams to watch TV together and play games. We even work out together over FaceTime.

7:00 p.m. – Now is when I would do homework or take a meeting. Honestly, anything could happen. I tried to talk to my friends and deal with anything that needed to get done.

Midnight – If I’m lucky, I would be in bed. (Unlike right now because I am writing this at 12:30 a.m.). Sometimes I get my best work done at midnight or I get all my work done and go to bed early. Life during the pandemic is pretty complicated but all we can do is take it one day at a time.  

 

A Day In The Life of A Remote-Learner: Adam Adreveno

Hello, my name is Adam Adreveno and I just finished my sophomore year at PUC as a film major. A little bit about myself: I’m from a small town in Northern California and I’ve always had a dog. I like making remote-controlled lego vehicles in my free time and tinkering with all sorts of gadgets. This last quarter was a wild ride of figuring out how to keep track of all my classes when there is nothing to distinguish them in my mind. So without further ado, let me share with you a day in my life as a remote-learner. 

6:00 a.m. – I’m probably having an exciting, well-structured dream that I will not remember.

7:00 a.m. – I wake up, even though I’d like to finish that dream I was having for another hour.

8:00 a.m. – At around eight, I’ll make some breakfast of fried eggs and toast. A fun fact is that I have chickens at my house so I get fresh eggs every day! 

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9:00 a.m. This is when I have my directing class where I learn how to direct the imaginary actors living in my forehead. 

10:00 a.m. – General homework time

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11:00 a.m. – This is when I have my group production class. Usually, it’s where all the film students help each other on our movies. However, since the quarantine, this class has been more like solo production.

Noon Time for lunch as well as a stroll outside to play with my dogs.

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1:00 p.m. – Cinematography zoom lecture time.

2:00 p.m. This is when my last class directing begins, and on other days screenwriting.

4:00 p.m. – Time to collect the chicken eggs!

5:00 – 9:00 p.m. This is when I split up my time between dinner, homework, family time, and video games.

10:00 p.m. – Sleep is valuable to me because it is the time when our brains comb through everything we’ve learned and done throughout the day to record and make connections with it. So I like to end all my days reading my Bible to make sure that’s always the freshest thing in my mind.

 

A Day in The Life of A Remote-Learner – Miryam Andrianarijaona

Good morning, good afternoon, good evening or good night, wherever you are! I hope you are all safe and adjusted to our new normal. It escalated quickly, I mean who saw that coming? I’ve heard variations of how people are either bored, too busy, not busy, enjoying it, or hating it. To be honest, I’ve actually been enjoying my time at home. The beginning was a bit rough, though I knew that even if COVID wouldn’t happen I’d still do the same thing for Spring Break, sad I know. I think that this is a new version of me finding myself and taking care of myself, which I’m loving. All the patience, all the independence, it’s a bit relaxing, so I guess thank you for this slight break?  

The last two quarters I was busy, doing a bunch of outside work and extracurricular activities. Life was a bit rocky and difficult, but I grew from that and learned. I like to think that that’s the reason why this quarter feels less stressful and not as busy, even though I’m taking a full load and still able to work on other art projects. I also like to think that quarantine has helped me grow as an individual and I see a lot of new positives about it, but not ignoring that others have it rough and maybe having a really difficult time.  

I feel really privileged right now, because I am, which I am thankful for! One of the best things that have happened was finding flour and toilet paper. I swear, some people are either hiding large stashes somewhere, because it took a while searching for some. I drove 50 mins for it and the trip took around three hours. Crazy, but I enjoyed that adventure.  

So that’s a long intro, but Hi! My name’s Miryam and I’m a BFA film major. Here’s a quick look into my life right now, it hasn’t changed too much. I start the day, the night before, as in I’m a night owl. Usually going to sleep at 1 a.m. is really early for me, so you might catch me up on social media till 4 a.m. or maybe 5 a.m. if you’re lucky. I don’t stay up for fun, usually, I’m doing my homework. I’m not too crammed though because I take my time. It’s a bit easier for me to stay up whenever my sisters are up to doing homework as well, so it’s not too bad. I wouldn’t recommend staying up this late because sometimes I get these weird tingling headaches and back pains from it all, so that’s a plus.  

Eventually, I’ll either watch YouTube or bits of movies to ease my brain from work. After that, I’ll head to bed. At around 7 a.m. I should be (but I’m not) running to train for cross country but let’s just say that’s the next thing I’ll be aiming to improve. Then (don’t tell my professors this but I just put my alarm at the time my class starts), which depending on the day, it’s either 9 a.m. or 10 a.m. which isn’t bad, since I’m in the pacific time zone. I hop out of bed and head to my “classroom” a.k.a my living room. After my first class, I have a break and that’s the time that I properly wake up to shower and get ready. Then I might snack a bit.  

Depending on the day I’ll either have a full day of classes till 9:30 p.m. (I know right, it’s a late class) or my day will consist of zero classes. During my class breaks, I’ll either work on projects or homework that may have been due a couple of days ago…oops.   

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Then eventually at around 7 or 9 p.m., depending on the day, I’ll take a fat nap for a couple of hours, just so that I can be prepared to stay up till 4 am. I love me some naps. Sadly, time has been inconvenient because I usually miss texts or calls during my nap time, which is fine.  

For me, this quarter went by quickly. I expected that it would go too slow, so yay! I’ve enjoyed most of what’s going on, there have been lower moments in life, so I’m very grateful for where I am now! Never in a million years would I have thought that this would be the way this entire year had been. So much has changed and I’ve learned from it all. I guess my one take into this year would be, that you can’t control what happens around you, but you can control how you react. You can choose to turn the negatives into positives, you can choose to accept mistakes and learn, you can choose to grow. I’ve learned to push myself and I’ve learned that I need to say no sometimes.

I think the best thing out of this entire school year is that I feel like I’ve found out way more about myself and I’ve been able to use it in a way that I can help others around me. I look forward to finishing this school year strong and having a relaxing summer. I’m excited to see everyone in the fall! I wish all of you guys safety and for seniors, I hope you guys know that I, your professors, friends, and family are proud of you! For those affected, if there is anything I can do, I would love to help in any way that I can!  

 

Five Ways To Cope With Stress

As exciting and as fun as college can be, it’s also a very stressful time. Students often feel overwhelmed with the amount of work they have and the late nights of studying for upcoming exams. Here are five quick tips for dealing with your stress. 

Make A Plan

Get organized and make a plan. Be sure to include all the tasks you need to accomplish. Whether you need to take it day-by-day or plan out each week, try to stick to it. 

Eat Well 

When you eat well, you feel well. Eat foods with high levels of vitamin C, like oranges and other citrus food. Consume complex carbohydrates, such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Drinking different types of tea, like mint or chamomile, can also help reduce your stress. 

Exercise

Get those feel-good endorphins running through your body to reduce your stress and have your body feel good. Take some time to go running, take a bike ride, do some yoga, or just take a simple stroll around the neighborhood. However, you choose to exercise, making time will help you feel better. 

Take Breaks

Don’t forget to take breaks. You might think you have way too much to do and there’s not enough time for breaks, but … make time! It doesn’t matter how busy you are, you need a break after all the studying and work you’ve been doing. Whatever outlets you have for taking breaks, do them. Play basketball, go for a walk, watch an episode of a show, take a SHORT nap— whatever you like to do that gives your mind a break. 

Breath

When you start feeling stressed or overwhelmed, take a step back and breath. Consider trying The 478 breathing technique. Breath in for four seconds, holding the breath for seven seconds and exhaling for eight seconds. This breathing pattern aims to reduce anxiety or and can even help people get to sleep.

Remember, it’s normal to feel stressed in college and there are always people around who are willing to help. If things start to feel overwhelming, reach out to your dean, RA, or check in with our Counseling Center.

 

Prep For Finals: Eight Tips

By Ally Romanes

The time has come! Finals are just around the corner. You might already be stressing trying to complete your projects and find enough time to study. But because we care, here are eight simple tips to help you prep for and crush your finals. 

Make A Study Plan

Before you start studying for your finals, make a plan to get organized. Think about which classes might be the hardest, that’s a great place to begin. Making a plan can help you keep track of your time so you don’t run out! 

Study Early

Get a head start on studying so you don’t feel overwhelmed and rushed during the weekend before finals or during finals week. Studying early will also help you remember the information you studied, which can lead to less time studying for that exam the week of finals. The earlier you study, the more confident you will feel taking the exam. 

Get Creative

If you use notecards or print out your notes, get creative by color-coding. Use colored pens or sharpies to write your notes and highlight important information. Color-coding your notes can stimulate your memory to remember what you’ve been studying. It will also be easier for you to find a certain answer or subject you want to look back and review, plus, it’s fun!

Study Notes

Always have your notes out and ready. If you need to go back and organize your notes, do it. Having your notes organized will make it so much easier for you to study. Also, check your teachers lecture slides if you missed a class or see if they uploaded a practice exam. 

Study Outloud

Reading your notes out loud can help you remember the information that you’ve studied. By talking through your material and thinking about facts and formulas out loud can help you retain information. 

Quiz Yourself

Quiz yourself over the information you already studied. Quizzing yourself can help you remember the things that you’ve studied and can help you remember the information. Ask your friends or your parents to quiz you too. 

Form A Study Group

Gather some classmates and form a study group. Studying with others can motivate you and help you learn better. By comparing notes, working through tough questions, and reviewing class material together, everyone can help each other succeed. 

Take Care of Yourself

Above all else, you have to make sure you are taking care of yourself. The pressure doing well can feel like a lot, but not getting enough sleep is much worse! Make sleep a priority. Your mind needs rest, just like you. 

Studying takes a lot out of you, so make sure you take short breaks. Grab something to eat, stretch or watch one episode of a show (just one episode!). Try to steer away from junk food and choose much healthier options. Don’t forget to drink water and stay hydrated! 

Good luck on your finals! Do your very best and have faith in yourself! 

 

It’s OK Being A Super Senior

By: Ally Romanes

A person can make all types of plans for their perfect college experience, but sometimes things turn out differently than you planned, life’s funny like that. One plan most students enter college with is the idea that you’ll finish your degree in four years. For a lot of people, this is totally doable. However, some students take longer. It’s actually very common to take a fifth year to finish your schooling. 

As a fifth-year senior or a super senior as we are often called, I just wanted to take a moment to say, it’s okay to be a super senior! 

When I realized I needed to stay a fifth year to finish my degree, I felt a little upset and embarrassed. A lot of people are ashamed of taking a bit longer to finish school. There’s almost a stigma to it, like taking an extra year means you’re not as intelligent or didn’t take school seriously or just didn’t plan well. But I was wrong. My personal experience shows having extra time in college can actually be a positive thing. It gives you more time to prepare for the real world and to figure out plans for after you graduate. 

For me personally, this extra year has been a true blessing. It’s allowed me to figure out who I am as a person and what I want to do with my life. It also allowed me an opportunity to work in the marketing office helping with social media and various marketing tasks, which is great since that’s what my degree is in. I’m not sure I would have had this opportunity had I not been an older student, as fifth-year seniors tend to be more mature and given more responsibilities. (My boss told me to say that last part, I swear I’m not bragging!)

There’s a perk too. Student discounts are a fantastic way to save some money and I’m definitely not sad about still getting them!

So whether you’re on track to finish in four or you end up sticking around a little longer, just know, it’s ok! Everyone’s journey looks a little different. It doesn’t matter how long it takes as long as you work hard for your goals.