Category Archives: My PUC Story

An Argentinian Preschool Birthday Party

By Adrienne Weiss

A disclaimer is necessary before you risk reading this article. I have an extreme tendency to become very enthusiastic about learning, this ailment is generally known as being a nerd. I love learning, genuinely enjoy sitting down with my textbook, and spending an afternoon studying is something I make time for. My phone is full of podcasts about science innovations, the history of language, psychology, and philosophy, and most of all, I become very animated talking about pedagogy and educational styles. Yet despite my unusual affinity for the (often grueling) acquisition of information and collecting of new experiences, there were parts of jumping into a year of Adventist Colleges Abroad in Argentina that were uncomfortable, even for me.

Indulge me in a thought experiment. Imagine you walk into a room where a preschool birthday party is in full force. Thirty small children in sparkly pink dresses and sneakers that light up when they run are squealing with glee. Each has three balloons they are attempting to keep in the air and enthusiastically and uncoordinatedly batting towards your face with ecstatic peals of laughter. This sensation is what I encountered walking into my great aunt’s house when I understood just enough Spanish I could no longer simply let it wash over me, and it rather had the dizzying effect of being pummeled with balloons.

On this side of the family, English is at such a level when a grandchild says, “Hello, nice to meet you,” the superb use of English is applauded by the entire crowded room of relatives. Upon entering this virtual preschool party, I was kindly offered a beige-colored smoothie that was nearly chewable and by the end of that evening, I knew everyone I met was related to me, yet it took me months to figure out how.

(Half of the aunts and uncles, and a third of the cousins are represented in these pictures.)

When asked, “How was your year in Argentina?” I have my answer ready: “Wonderful, I’m glad I went.” But how can nine months of experience be summarized in one word? There are two statements that better explain the result of a year as an exchange student and I cannot take credit for either statement. The first made me laugh: my dad’s friend declared I have “this new thing” in my brain. Spanish, an entire language, really is “a new thing.” It’s a tool that can be used in a large number of disciplines and I managed to put it into my brain in the space of nine months. The second statement is I have become what might be called “bicultural.” I have learned and integrated sufficiently that I will never be in one place without missing the other, or the people who live there.

Choosing to spend a year in the ACA Argentina program had many motivators for me: I wished to learn Spanish, I hoped for a year to step back from my fast-paced science major, and I saw the unique opportunity to get to know the family on my father’s side and understand their culture. Arriving in Argentina I had less of a culture shock than I had anticipated. My Argentinian and Uruguayan grandparents had traveled down a couple weeks before me to visit family and prepare to introduce me to their siblings who live there and get me settled in “la Villa,” the 95-percent-Adventist community surrounding “Universidad Adventista del Plata,” where ACA students attend school alongside the Argentinian students. 

My grandmother has two brothers who live within walking distance from my dormitory and the first week my grandparents took me to large family gatherings at each house, starting with Tío Roberto’s. As I had predicted, Spanish was tossed around the table and I watched it go flying by, feeling like I was at a tennis match. I quickly learned the art of the Argentinian kiss greeting, and a small vocabulary of niceties to pair with a smile when they offered unidentified food items. After a couple of hours at Tío Roberto’s house with two of his children and six of his grandchildren, I went back to my dorm room and took a long nap. This was only the first family gathering. The next one was the preschool party experience when I finally realized I had placed myself outside of my comfort zone and was about to learn in a way that was going to be a challenge even to a professed nerd.

I have also learned that often experiential learning is just as valuable as spending quality time with my textbooks. Trips to Brazil, Peru, Uruguay, and Chile taught me more about people, friendships, language, currency, planning, decision-making, and reminded me I am an adult more than four entire years of college with my nose in textbooks.

(My group of adventurers at Valparaiso in Chile and a view from “pan de Azucar” overlooking Rio De Janeiro.)

ACA helped me grow academically more than I expected. While learning a new language it is almost possible to feel the neural connections forming. I tired my friends with discussions about how I mixed up my languages and how fascinating this phenomenon was from a psychological perspective. Looking back at this year, I firmly believe I have grown, matured, and expanded my brain at least as much as studying organic chemistry for a year if not more.

The metacognition of learning a language fascinated me the entire year. I was constantly analyzing what parts of language my brain adopted easily and why, which words came to mind, or even noting moments when I was seeking a word and could not find it in either English or Spanish. I will encourage anyone I can to take a year abroad if only for the neuropathways that are created through learning a new language, with the bonus of seeing the world and making friends from across different continents. I believe regardless of which major I may be studying, the process of learning a new language will help me in learning all my other topics, and I hope to maintain my friendships from five continents.

With a little less time spent wrestling with numbers, I have allowed myself to observe creation with an eye toward the beauty and not just the organization of our world. Spring quarter, which in Argentina is actually fall, I was given the opportunity to participate in an internship working with the ESL teacher and helping students find opportunities to speak to real-live English-speakers. Our class began at 7 a.m., and we assistants watched the sunrise while walking to class. After observing a particularly vibrant orange, I commented to one of the ESL students how incredibly beautiful the bright sky was. He turned to me and replied, “Really? You mean you don’t have sunrises where you come from?” I realized it wasn’t beauty I lacked in my hometown, but an appreciation of my surroundings which I have gained this year with a conscious effort towards appreciating and soaking in the world around me, not just textbook facts.

(I will never stop missing Argentinian sunsets and sunrises. I would often delay my run until I could be sure to watch the sunset on my return trip.)

I believe only someone from outside of a culture can really view its beauty with fresh eyes. I hope having this new split perspective, I can maintain the ability to step fully into one culture or the other in order to observe American culture with Argentinian eyes, and Argentinian culture with American eyes, and avoid the jaded perspective of taking my culture for granted. Because if I learned anything this year it is that people, language, and all cultures really are beautiful.

A Conversation with Bethany, PUC’s Campus Chronicle Editor

By Becky St. Clair

Bethany greets everyone who enters her office with a warm smile and an enthusiastic handshake, immediately establishing herself as a confident, approachable professional. You may never guess she was only a freshman when she was elected to the position.

Many characteristics set Bethany apart from other students, not the least of which are her thoughtful eloquence, competent leadership, and gracious demeanor. One of the few non-seniors to serve as the editor-in-chief for the Campus Chronicle, Bethany filled her role with gusto and poise, framing a vision and skillfully guiding her team as they made that vision reality. Here, Bethany reflects with us on her year serving PUC as its lead student communicator.

What inspired you to pursue being the CC editor?

Since 2015, I’ve intentionally taken a yearly risk or challenge to learn a new skill, travel somewhere new, or understand a subject. So, selfishly, I had so many ideas and plans for what the CC could become it was impossible to resist the challenge.

What did you find most rewarding about your CC work?

It is incredibly rewarding to see writers hone their craft, learn to edit and critique their work, and publish articles with which the campus resonates. It’s a really special thing for the CC to be the platform from which to affirm students’ hard work and accomplishments. As a campus, we’re stronger when we support each other, I believe, and I love that the CC can be a part of that process.

You’ve talked about growing your team and your vision for building the CC; tell us about your own personal growth as editor.

I’m a very evidence-based person and I like to know something is certain. Being editor is very uncertain. Last-minute things happen, budget changes, writers drop out, deadlines are missed. Having faith that things are possible even through uncertainty makes it possible to achieve a desirable outcome.

I have also gained a sense of self-assurance in this job. Being pushed to do something foreign and difficult shows me what I’m capable of doing, and I see my team members experiencing this as well.

Who is someone who has had a major impact on your leadership?

Professor Lynne Thew, as the CC faculty advisor, is a stickler for details and holds herself and our editorial team to a very high standard. Through example and mentoring, she’s taught me that a leader sets vision but also steps into the nitty-gritty process of seeing that vision through. I’m deeply indebted to her, both as a friend and role model.

What are some things you’d list under “accomplishments” as editor?

  • Growth of editorial team: from 5-10 members to 20-25 members
  • Consistent schedule this year: 12 issues
  • Competitive in the David L. Apple Awards
  • Transitioned to traditional newspaper format
  • The majority of stories published are on-campus news
  • Recognized by faculty in Letters to the Editor
  • Increased social media recognition on campus
  • Increase in both alumni and on-campus donor support

In what ways would you say this position gave you confidence and strength as a person and a leader?

It’s not easy to take on opportunities that look too enormous to manage, but as a result, I have a greater dignity in and understanding of my capabilities, as well as a greater measure of self-respect. So, as a female leader, I’ve also felt more empowered to inhabit a space of leadership without feeling like an imposter.

This experience also taught me the power of a hard-working team. We have incredibly talented students from many departments working on the CC, and as a leader I recognize now that our strength lies in unity and common vision.

Why do you think it is important to allow student voices to be heard—even when those voices may be challenging the status quo and making some people uncomfortable?

Freedom of speech is an incredible privilege Western journalism has had a right to for some time. In the age of “fake news” and constant ideological propaganda, I think it is important for students to develop an ability to think critically, compose an evidence-based argument, and approach an issue from a valid angle. Proverbs says, “in a multitude of counselors lies wisdom.” I like to think that a variety of opinions, albeit sometimes uncomfortable ones, helps us collectively to arrive at a measure of truth.

What advice would you give someone going into a leadership position for the first time?

Stay humble. Leadership is not a status symbol but a call to serve. You’re there to make your team shine and call out their potential to accomplish a worthy goal. Admit your mistakes, seek advice from trusted mentors, and don’t recklessly dismiss their wisdom for the sake of novel theory. Also, be kind and love your team. If you care about your team members beyond what they can do for the team, that’s the definition of love.

We’ve come a long way in the last couple of decades toward gender equality in the workplace, but there are still some challenges women in leadership positions face. Which challenges do you think are the most crucial to address?

It is crucial to address the imposter syndrome many women feel in positions of leadership—myself included. Especially if women come from a religio-social conservative background, they feel their position of leadership is not valid, is not recognized by their spiritual community, or is tangential to their expected social role. It will be a continuous challenge for women to boldly inhabit their space of leadership, and serve their team with poise.

My Life-Changing Year Studying Abroad in Spain

By Angela J. Wilensky

Growth. Independence. Relationships. Culture. Beauty. These are some of the words that come to my mind when I reflect on my incredible, unforgettable, life-changing study abroad experience. When the opportunity to write this blog post was presented to me, I more than happily agreed. However, I’ve definitely hit a wall: I have too much to say. I’m serious! I haven’t been able to organize my thoughts, thus postponing my submission. It’s just that I feel like I’ve lived more of my life in the past 8.5 months than I have in my first 19 years. I know all of this might sound a bit dramatic, but I don’t know how else to express how transformative this year has been for me. Here I am at the end of my course here, and I can honestly say that this has been the best year of my life thus far.

For one, I went completely out of my comfort zone: I have never moved outside of the Bay Area, I live only about an hour or so from my college, and I have never really been away from home AND my family for more than a week. So when I made the decision to move to a country whose official language I don’t speak, whose culture I know nothing about, and with people whom I’ve never met, I was blindly strapping myself into a rollercoaster. As you can probably imagine, it was 100 percent the wildest, most loop-filled, most fun and exciting ride I’ve ever been on, and I’m so proud I survived it. I learned Spanish; I traveled to 11 countries (and learned to travel with just a carry-on, something unheard of for me); I made some of my BEST friends, both American and Spanish; and I managed to grow in my relationship with God.

Staring with my studies; I mean, how cool is it to completely immerse yourself into a new culture and learn a completely new way of communicating? Personally, my main reason for studying abroad in Spain was, in fact, to learn Spanish. Everything else that came with it was just an extra bonus. I spent many months taking conversation, composition, grammar, and test prep classes, as well as some fun extracurriculars such as Flamenco, Folklore, Translation, and Health. Plus, I interned in the kitchen and taught ESL to first and second graders. Needless to say, I kept myself busy while having an absolute blast. And to top it all off, I received my DELE B1 official certification (Feel free to Google that on your own time)!

Straying a bit from all of the Spanish talk, I also traveled to so many new places both in and outside of Spain! My school took us on some amazing trips to locations all over Spain, Gibraltar, and Morocco, and I was able to do some independent adventuring in Portugal, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, the Czech Republic, England, France, Austria, and Malta. Experiencing the cultures of other countries has changed my perspective on life as a whole, as well as has given me a greater appreciation for everything I have back home in California.

Speaking of everything I have back home, I can’t even fathom how lucky I am to have met all of the people I did. Right at the beginning of the school year, the whole Adventist community in our area went on a campus ministries trip in the middle of Spain, and I was lucky enough to meet so many Spaniard right off the bat. Throughout the year, my friendships with them only grew better, and I know I now have lifetime friends here. Plus, I built strong relationships with my professors and other school faculty—relationships I will cherish forever. Of course, I also became extremely close to the other ESDES students from all of the different Adventist universities. I met some people this year that really did change my life, and they are a huge part of the reason I loved my year abroad.

To close, I found myself a lovely community of God-fearing church members with whom I felt comfortable, safe, and welcomed. My favorite Bible verse is found in Matthew 5:16, and it says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” I’m incredibly humbled and blessed I was able to sing and share God’s goodness in that church with those beautiful people. I’m just so moved by the fact I can now glorify my God with a wider range of people because I’ve learned another language. I know this isn’t the type of “wow factor” most people would expect from a study abroad experience, but it truly made an impact on me and my time in Spain. I’ve never had to rely on God more than I’ve had to this year, so I really am thankful for everything I experienced on this remarkable journey.

Well, I’ve certainly written more about my experience than I was asked to, but I guess, in short, I just want to say if you’re even considering studying abroad in the slightest, go. One year abroad will not ruin all of your plans of graduating on time and getting on with life as soon as possible. Just slow down; there’s no rush. Study abroad now while you still have this incredible opportunity (before it’s too late and you really do have to get on with life). You won’t regret it. Regardless of how your experience goes, whether you’re abroad for just a summer or for an entire three quarters, you will grow and learn so much about yourself, and that in itself should be enough a reason to make that final decision to turn in those papers and hop on your flight to your new home.

PD Quería decir gracias por todo, España. Te echaré de menos y te prometo que regresaré algún día. Te quiero muchísimo.

A Hot Meal & A Prayer: Students Serve the Homeless

Homeless Ministries at People’s Park in Berkeley.

By Becky St. Clair

One Friday night business administration major George Grigsby was serving food for AfterLite, a post-vespers event designed to encourage student fellowship, he was approached by fellow student John Roberts, asking for any leftovers.

“I asked him what he needed them for, and that’s when I learned about the Clearlake Ministry,” Grigsby says.

Roberts was the leader of the ministry at that time, and he encouraged Grigsby to accompany them. The ministry, run by PUC students, provides both hot and nonperishable food, hygiene items, clothing, and prayer to persons experiencing homelessness on the streets of Clearlake, California. This year, Grigsby is the ministry leader, taking around five fellow students with him every other week to connect with anyone they can find.

“It’s getting harder to reach them because the local law enforcement is stepping up their efforts to disperse the city’s homeless,” Grigsby explains. “So instead of the 75-100 we used to serve there, we now see only 15-30 each time, and we have to drive around to various locations to find them.”

When they do connect with someone, Grigsby and his team make sure to inquire about needs they might be able to fill the next time they come. The top three requested items, especially this time of year when it’s chilly, are sweaters, sleeping bags, and socks.

Howell Mountain Market contributes groceries for the Clearlake Ministry team, and Grigsby spends a bit of time each day putting the bags together so it doesn’t add up to one long night of doing it all. Then he and his student team get together and cook hot food, as well.

“This ministry gives me a chance to put myself in a situation where I can make things better,” Grigsby explains. Growing up in West Africa, he felt very deeply the tragedy that occurred when Ebola broke out there in 2014.

“The people I grew up with were suffering, and I couldn’t do anything about it,” he recalls. “If I can’t make a difference there, I will help the people around me. Clearlake gives me a chance to do that.”

As a sophomore, Kevin Martins, junior biology and pre-med major, had seen Homeless Ministries listed in the “This Week at PUC” emails many times, and when he happened to meet the student director of the Berkeley Ministry to the homeless, he decided to give it a try.

“I really enjoyed the experience of preparing and serving food for others,” he says. “They’re usually just there alone and really enjoy having someone notice them and listen to what they have to say.”

When the ministry leader graduated, Martins stepped up and took over. Every other Sabbath the team of around 15 pile into a large van and attend church and eat potluck with the Adventist church in Berkeley. After potluck, they prepare food in the church’s kitchen to serve the homeless in a place called People’s Park. They serve food, talk with the people, find out their needs and make lists for next time they come, and pray with those who are willing.

“When we’re at the church I organize the group to make sure everyone has a role,” Martins explains. “Everyone has their skills and strengths, and we work together well, making sure everything happens that needs to.”

The group typically serves around 50 homeless, but recently new tents appeared at the park, and Martins made notes to prepare food for 70 the next time they came. Once they serve within the main part of the park, they carry plates around to other areas of the park to serve those who didn’t make it to the table.

Martins has participated in an Amen Clinic previously, and it sparked his interest in serving others. He intends to continue doing so even once he starts his career.

“I want to be a doctor because I want to help people in their healing,” he says. “This ministry has helped me see this is, in fact, what I want to do with my life.”

It’s the stories that affect Martins most. One week he met a woman in a wheelchair who had spent many years living in Brazil, Martins’ home. They began speaking in Portuguese, and she shared her struggles with him.

“She explained to me how being disabled makes being homeless even harder,” he says. “Sometimes she is harassed by other homeless people, and once she and her wheelchair were even set on fire. The things she tells me inspire me to keep going back.”

Martins, like Grigsby, says a majority of the requests they receive from those they serve are for basic hygiene items such as toothbrushes and shaving cream, as well as warm clothing such as socks and jackets.

Both ministries accept donations toward supplies as well as donations of time to prepare and/or serve. Since not everyone has cooking skills, they invite those who do to contribute their skills to serve others. Whether it’s helping prepare the food or delivering pre-cooked meals, both ministries welcome contributions.

“These ministries give us a chance to see beyond ourselves,” he says. “The present need of others isn’t someone else’s problem, it’s everyone’s problem. And if we don’t know what’s going on around us, we can’t help.”

Hygiene kits or supplies for them, clothes—especially socks, gloves, hats, and coats—and money toward gas and food are always appreciated. Anyone who wishes to accompany the groups to Berkeley or Clearlake can reach out to Grigsby and Martins for a schedule and instructions. Drivers are also needed, as two current drivers are graduating this spring. Although worship credit is available for this ministry, both Grigsby and Martins encourage student participants to focus on the serving rather than the credit.

“The purpose is to take a look at your life and realize all you have and how you can give from that to those who don’t have,” Grigsby says. “If you can help make a difference for someone not doing as well, you should. It’s the selflessness of giving and what you learn from the experience that is most important.”

A new part of this ministry that Martins would like to start is bringing musicians to provide live music for the people as they eat. If you play an instrument and are interested in being part of ministry in this way, let Martins know. If you are interested in contributing to either of these ministries in any way, contact Grigsby at gggrigsby@puc.edu or Martins at knmartins@puc.edu.

“We’re so fortunate, and we need to give whenever we get the chance,” Martins comments. “This is that chance.”

Editor’s note: The following is a list of items needed the most by Homeless Ministries. Toothbrushes, toothpaste, shaving cream, shaving razors, sanitary pads, soap bars, deodorant, tissues, wet wipes, towels, and other personal hygiene items. Food, clothes, and cash donations are always greatly needed and appreciated. 

Kenzie Hardy, Your SA President!

Kenzie Hardy is what is commonly known as a “super senior.” This is her fifth and final year at PUC, having spent one of those years as a student missionary in Madagascar. She will graduate in June with two degrees: A Bachelor of Business Administration with an emphasis in international business, and a Bachelor of Science degree in global development studies with a business emphasis.

She considers Roseville, Calif., to be home, and completed her high school years at Pine Hills Adventist Academy in Auburn. While there, she served as student association treasurer, was a member of the honor society, and helped out during Week of Prayer. When it came time to decide on a college, Kenzie says, “PUC was the college I felt was most responsive and provided the best answers to the questions I had.” Her path was clear: She chose PUC.

This year, Kenzie is not only finishing up her college career, but she’s also serving her fellow students as their student association president. We caught up with her between classes and meetings so we could get to know her a little better. Introducing: Kenzie Hardy, your Student Association president!

When did you first get that spark of interest in leadership?

I unofficially participated in SOL club (the Student Organization of Latinos) my freshman year, attending and offering help during some events. But I became a life group leader as a sophomore. As a freshman, I had a great leader but knew of others that didn’t have the same experience. I saw the benefits of continuing the program but also saw an opportunity to be part of changing those things that weren’t working as well.

What was your major platform while running for SA president?

The phrase on the campaign materials was “let’s talk” and instead of leaving it as a printed poster, I set up a booth in the cafeteria. The booth provided an opportunity for students to share concerns, ideas, and to get to meet me and ask questions. I really emphasized the experience and knowledge gathered after several years here.  

How did it feel to go through your campaign—and win?

The elections process felt surreal, and the day it was announced even moreso. To this day I’ll have random and sudden realizations of the huge responsibility I have been entrusted with. It is mostly humbling to have received support that put me in this office and continues.

Tell us your leadership philosophy.

I truly think individuals are motivated to thrive in any position if the environment is designed to allow individuals to grow. Also, I really take into heart the idea of leading by example, instead of demanding or requiring things I wouldn’t of myself.

What do you feel is one of your most important roles/duties as president?

I think being visible, accessible, and present to students. Also, making sure information is being collected and transmitted between the student body and college administration.

What’s the best way for students to have their voices/concerns heard by the student leaders on campus?

There are several student leadership bodies that are empowered to make changes, but it all starts with communication. Finding out who represents them in the Student Senate, SA, and other committees is the first step. I’d like to encourage anyone with concerns to actually address them to someone—any leader can take it to the appropriate channels. The invitation also goes to those entrusted with listening, to make sure they are getting to those channels or individuals who can make changes.

Kenzie and the SA team.

What’s the best class you’ve taken at PUC thus far, and why?

My freshman year I took Psych 121 (General Psychology) and at that time it was taught by Dr. Charlene Bainum. The class was fascinating and to this day, I still reference some of the concepts learned in that class almost daily.

Where are your favorite study spots?

If I really need to focus and minimize distractions I like to go to the basement laundry room in Andre. I usually go off-campus on a Sunday or during finals week, and I like Brasswood’s coffee shop.

What’s something about PUC you learned after being here a while?

This is something I learned during my junior year, I think everyone should know: There is a waived fee for credit overload if you’re a senior who has taken 16 credits/quarter since freshman year.

Tell me about a time you stepped out of your comfort zone and how it’s benefitted you.

I worked as the programming coordinator at Pine Springs Ranch this past summer, and the position was somewhat out of my comfort zone. Creating programs for different purposes (comedy plays, activities with spiritual messages, interactive stations with a theme, etc.) and overseeing their development from start to finish was not something I had experience doing. It was definitely a summer of growth, I developed the skill of quick problem-solving.

Kenzie and her SM family.

Tell us about a positive role model in your life.

I have a very special place in my heart for Dr. Gideon Petersen, president at Université Adventiste Zurcher in Madagascar, and his wife, Pam. During my time as a student missionary they cared for me and I experienced firsthand their servant leadership style, their passion for helping others, and their humble lifestyle. We had candid conversations about various topics and they are part of the reason I am completing the major I am.

Where and when can students find you if they want to chat about life at PUC and voice their opinions?

In between classes, meetings, and other such events, my default location is my office in the Campus Center. Whenever I am in here, unless I’m having a meeting, I keep the door open and everyone is welcome to come chat. I also love writing emails, so I am always checking my email and answer relatively fast.

What’s your favorite Bible verse, and why?

One of them is Luke 1:45; “Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her!” I love that this verse specifically says “she” and the benefit of trusting in God and His faithfulness is feeling happy, secure, and blessed.

The Grind: A Showcase of a Student Job on Campus

By Michael Morales

What’s something everyone worries about when first starting life at a new school? I’ll tell you: Meeting. New. People. Even if you manage to get out there and meet new people, there’s no guarantee your schedule will allow you to maintain those friendships! Meeting new people is definitely a stressful part of college. However, it can also be one of the most memorable things about your college experience. If you find yourself nodding your head while reading the above statements, have I got a tip for you!

Try applying for a job in the Grind—the quaint little coffee shop located inside the Campus Center! Why do I suggest working at a coffee shop is a good way to meet people? Here’s a list of reasons I compiled from simply being a barista myself:

The Coffee

One of the perks of being a Grind employee is the fact you get to surround yourself with a drink that makes the world go around—coffee. Working as a barista really opens your mind to the world of coffee and the drinks involved in it. Trust me, you’ll easily be able to explain to your friends the difference between a caramel latte and a caramel macchiato. After being immersed in coffee culture, you can use that as a talking point with other coffee enthusiasts on campus (of which there are many).

The Customer Service

A great skill working at the Grind will help you develop is a positive work ethic and cheerful attitude towards customers. Since you’ll be a barista/cashier employee, you have the chance to make a service interaction truly memorable and personal. If a person is unsure about what to order, you can use your developed coffee knowledge to recommend a drink that suits the customer. Before long, you might see the faces of people who come often to get their coffee fix. You can learn their name, their favorite drink, and even become good friends!

The Team

Apart from being a master barista with a knack for good service, is perhaps the best part of working at the Grind—your team. Your co-workers have got your back whenever you need them, and they know you got theirs too. Each person is so unique with their own set of skills that makes the Grind a truly unique work experience. Some can dance, some can stock items like a beast, and some can make drinks faster than you can say “Man, I love Colloquy!”

Overall, the Grind is a great place to work if you’re eager to meet new people at PUC. You meet customers and co-workers alike, each with their own personality traits that makes the student body so diverse. Not to mention you get to say “Yeah, I’m a barista now” to anyone you meet. That, in and of itself, should be motivation enough to get out there and give it a shot! Who knows, you might find yourself loving it a latte.

Life as a C.C. Sports Writer

By Andrew Kim

When I think about sports, sports are more than physical activities that occur for entertainment purposes, keeping people healthy, and building character. Sports serve as one of many crucial elements of everyday life that keeps athletes, fans, and society energized, emotional, motivated, and inspired in life. When journalists report on sports stories, they share the same passion with sports fans and athletes. That’s the main reason why I am a communication major here at PUC with plans on becoming a sports journalist so I, too, can share my passion and enthusiasm of sports I follow on a daily basis. In addition, I knew to continue to build towards my future path, I needed to gain experience in learning and writing about sports. That all was reaffirmed when I joined the staff of the Campus Chronicle, PUC’s student-run newspaper.

The first time I heard of the Campus Chronicle here at PUC was during my first week as a freshman, when I visited the Chronicle offices at the Campus Center to gain an idea of what the organization was like and how they reported on story ideas on a weekly basis. It was not until the following year as a sophomore, where I spent my freshman year attending meetings but not proposing any sports stories then, where I decided to write my first sports article, which was about NASCAR and a racing event that recently occurred. Because of my childhood obsession of NASCAR, I knew a lot about NASCAR and I thought writing about it for the Chronicle would be perfect enough for me to do on a regular basis. Little did I know I had a lot more about sports writing and reporting to learn.

There were mixed emotions after my NASCAR article was published in the following Campus Chronicle edition. Part of me was happy with what I wrote and published for the first time for the Chronicle, but there was another part of me that felt like the Chronicle would not be overly excited about me only writing about NASCAR on a continuous basis. I knew for my next assignment, I would have to learn more about other sports. That was when I decided to learn about the PUC Pioneers, the college’s sporting teams from volleyball to basketball, and familiarize myself with their code of language, names of the athletes, the rules of the game, and what highlights to mention when writing.

I decided my first PUC Pioneers article I would write about would be a preview edition for the Pioneers heading into the 2017/18 season. I visited the Pioneers website and analyzed the Pioneers’ stats from last season, among which included how many games they won or lost and how close they came in making the Cal Pac tournament. I then turned my attention to the roster to know who represents the Pioneers in what sport, mention any newcomers to the Pioneers family, and break down the schedule for the upcoming season. Researching online and communicating with key Pioneer staffs that included coaches Greg Rahn and George Glover along with Brittany Brown, the athletics director, provided for me a clear background on sports that included basketball, volleyball, and cross country. After turning in the article, I felt both relieved and pleased with my first completed task as a Campus Chronicle sports writer, but also knew that this was only the beginning.

The next task I took, when writing about sports for Campus Chronicle, occurred on January 15, 2018, where I participated and reported my first Pioneers men’s basketball home game against UC Santa Cruz. Throughout the first half of the game, I kept track of the number of points made by each team, who contributed to scoring a point, and thought it would be a piece of cake. Then, someone gave me an official report sheet that covered the shots and stats of each player. By the time the game ended, I left with mixed emotions, one feeling happy for the Pioneers winning the game and having a lot to recap and write about the game, but also disappointed and felt I came unprepared and did not know what some of the stats meant. On the bright side, the game provided a general overview of what specifics, stats, and top plays to cover throughout an event and the importance of writing based on my knowledge of sports. The first game encouraged for me to participate in more games to familiarize myself with the Pioneers’ environment and the significance of their endless fight in making championship runs as underdogs. The more I went, the more I came back having more to write about the Pioneers and their top highlights from each game, along with including interviews with coaches and featured athletes. Even in times where I did not travel out to a Pioneers game, I spent a majority of my spare time following sports, both at PUC and out in the world, chronologically and familiarizing myself with what to cover or mention as a sports journalist.

Working for the Campus Chronicle as a sports writer has and continues to be a great learning experience. For starters, I am more familiarized with the PUC Pioneers and know more about their accomplishments compared to not knowing anything significant about them on my first day as a PUC student. Looking at the big picture, being a Chronicle sports writer provides for me a general view of the work sports journalists and broadcasters cover across the globe along with the resources, code of language, and overview they need to familiarize themselves with before, during, and after an event. Learning about different types of sports has lead me more in analyzing how to write and report on sports stories in a way where I can share the same enthusiasm, knowledge, and passion about sports.