A nice break from busy

Fifth and sixth weeks are by far the busiest of the quarter!  Over the past two weeks I have written 14 pages worth of English papers, taken 3 midterms, and read 5 novels!  Between fifth and sixth weeks was Relay for Life (which was incredible!) and sixth week was USAC elections (meaning lots of flyers and little sleep).  I haven’t regretted a single moment of my busy schedule.  Relay for Life was a wonderful bonding experience for my friends and I and UCLA has new student body leaders (I did my fair share of pestering people to vote). Seventh week is a nice break.  I finally have time to catch up the sleep I missed due to Relay and Elections and I don’t have any midterms left to worry about.

The weather has been so nice these last few days that my friends and I were able to take a spontaneous trip to Santa Monica on Sunday night for some night swimming and Monday night I was able to go on a nice night run.  Running is a great stress reliever and it got cool enough at 8pm that I was able to go on a relaxing 2.5 mile run.

Campus is so pretty at night.  Towards the end of my run, I took a rest on Janss steps, did some sit-ups, and then just laid in the grass as took in the scenery.  It was so relaxing.  I don’t remember the last time I felt so peaceful.

Night runners on campus are apart of a club, a secret society if you will.  There are a decent number of people who go running at night, but not as many as during the day or work out at the gym.  I always thought that running in LA would not be as fun as it was back home, but it definitely can be!  It all depends on where you run! Normally I run the perimeter, but there a lot of interesting places to run!

All in all, seventh week has gotten off to a good start!  I’m counting down the days to summer when I can run and relax all I want!

Studying and Keeping Sane

 

A large part of my time here at UCLA has been finding new and creative places to study.  Some of my favorites include:

  • The reading room at YRL
  • The 5th floor of YRL
  • The English Reading Room (a new find)
  • The Sunken Gardens (when warm)
  • Jimmy’s Coffeehouse
  • Espresso Profetta (in Westwood)
  • Starbucks (open until midnight!)

Most UCLA students at some point or another will experience “Night Powell”.  Night Powell is the College Library at night.  The reading rooms and study rooms are open 24/7 starting week 3.  While I have studied there, When studying, I have always found that crowded libraries can be a bit oppressive.  So last night, in a last ditch effort to avoid Night Powell, I decided to do some exploring.

I didn’t get very far…in fact, I ended up in Kerckhoff Coffeehouse (not all that unusual for me).  I was surprised to find it near empty!  I had my pick of the tables, as many plugs as I needed, and coffee!  On school nights, Kerckhoff is open until 11pm which is perfect since I try and get to sleep by 12am every night!  The music selection at Kerckhoff is always great and coffee is a college necessity.  Last night I really needed to study for my two midterms and I was impressed by the vibe at Kerckhoff.

During the day, Kerckhoff is buzzing with students and faculty.  Some are studying, others are catching up with friends, you always see bible studies meeting and student group interviews going on.  It is lively! At night it is the perfect study place!

Midterm Season

It’s now that time of the quarter again. Midterms are coming up for some of us *South Campus Majors. It seems like with the quarter system, I’m always studying for midterms one after another. But it’s really not as bad it sounds actually. I mean, I’d rather have my tests spread out than have them all at the same time.

Midterm weeks are not as stressful as finals week , but they definitely do bring restless nights of studying. As long as you keep up with the lectures and homework from the start of the quarter, you don’t have to be too stressed out for midterms. When I heard about people having to pull numerous all-nighters for exams, I thought college was a place where no one sleeps. But I haven’t had to pull any all-nighters yet, and I hope to keep it that way 😀

Also, midterm season means that the Test Bank will be crowded with people lining up for copies of practice tests. Between John Wooden Center and Powell Library, there is a place called the Student Activities Center, where many of the past practice midterms and finals are kept. Before every exam for a class, students visit that center to get a copy of past exams for that particular class. SAC’s only policy is for the students to give them an original copy of a past test (any test, essay, etc.) for a copy of a test in their test bank. Freshmen during the Fall quarter are exempted from this policy, because they obviously do not have any tests of their own because they haven’t taken any yet. It is also a good idea to stop by the test bank before the midterm/finals week, because as it comes closer and closer to midterms week, the place gets pretty packed. Last quarter, I went to the test bank at around 9 in the morning a week before my midterm, and a huge line had already formed all the way to the entrance of the building. So go there early, print what you need, and you are good for the quarter.

Midterm seasons can be tough and restless, but you can make it fun! Look for study buddies and form study groups. I found out that I can study for a longer time if I have someone to study with. Even if you guys are not studying for the same class, it definitely helps to have someone there to keep you from snoozing off 😀

So here I go again. First round of midterms for the Winter quarter…

Wish me luck!!

*South Campus Majors: a term for students with majors in the science and mathematics departments. The south side of the UCLA campus holds most, if not all, of the science and math buildings.

De-stressing weekend :)

Last weekend was such a fabulous, great, and wonderful weekend! I finished all my first midterms last week, and that meant that I got to enjoy the whole weekend without worrying about left over midterms!!

Thursday night I slept right away after I got home, in order to catch up on my lack of sleep 🙂 On Friday morning, I visited a  high school in Los Angeles. It was such a beautiful day, and there was no traffic at all going to the school, which was such an amazing start to the day!! 🙂

And guess where I went after the high school visit…..I went to Disneyland!!! 🙂 and no people, I’m not bored of it yet..I love and adore that place so much!! My boyfriend and I spent the whole half day there. We found this new restaurant that sells clam chowder, and it was so good! 🙂 We also went on the Toy Story mania ride, and got a funnel cake to end the day!! 🙂

On Saturday morning, I went to get dim sum with some of my friends. We ended up having a  total 11 people that showed up that morning! It was so much fun to catch up with them. One of my friends, who went to visit his girlfriend told us that he proposed to her; and that they are engaged now!! I was super excited for them!! After dim sum, my boyfriend and I went for church down in Lake Forest with Half and Half boba in our hand!! haha..

Over all, it was such a lovely and relaxing weekend!! I came back to school on Monday ready for some classes and school work(not really, but I’ll endure through it…haha)! Tell me how you de-stressed from your midterms Bruins!! Happy week 5 of Spring quarter!! 🙂

Week 5- Halfway done with Undergrad!

This week brings Week 5! That means that I am halfway done with my Undergraduate  years as a student at UCLA. This is definitely ringing a bell that midterms are coming, papers are coming, graduation event-planning is coming, and graduation itself is upon us. It seems like Spring Quarter is flying by! Next thing you know, I will be writing that finals are here…so not fab! As these last few weeks at UCLA approach me, I want to remember one thing: all the precious memories that I have made here and all the one I will make as my journey as a student comes to an end. As many of you may know, I am going to be working with Teach for America as a Special Education teacher. I couldn’t be any more proud and excited than ever before. It’s like being accepted into UCLA all over again. I am up for the challenge and rewards that I am sure TFA will bring me. I have five other friends who I can call fellow Corps members who will be joining me in this new journey of my life as well.

As I continue throughout the next week finishing up my coursework as a student, I begin preparing for my work of the future. What a blessing! I couldn’t be any more excited and thrilled- BRING IT FUTURE!

Interview with a Phobic

In lieu of an in class midterm examination, my psychology of fear requires an interview of a subject with a phobia with a six page write-up of the interview. This has been quite an interesting assignment. I have very little psychology background knowledge, so I have been doing a little bit of extra work just to make sure I fully understand the discussions we have been having in class.

Needless to say, this assignment has been quite entertaining despite the challenges. First came to find a subject with a phobia. Not a problem, I discovered a friend who was terrified of gutters to a friend deathly afraid of bees. This led to a rather fun interview, where I got to uncover the root of the fear. Next, I had to ask leading questions to develop a background of the fear. Finally, I analyzed the interview in reference to some of the crucial points of the psychologists we read in class.

This midterm is quite different then what I am used to. Regardless, I have enjoyed the challenge. This is after all what college is all about!

Go Bruins!

First battle field: Accomplished

Hey there fellow Bruins, my apologies that I couldn’t write a blog over the weekend. I was preparing for my first battlefield for this quarter. For those current Bruins, we all know that week 4 is the week where everyone is waiting for, not really. But anyway, I just did my first midterm for this quarter this morning; and it was a beast!!

Love the class, it is very informative. Love the professor, super genius and smart person. Love the TA, they are both very friendly and helpful. But when it comes for the test, let’s just say it was a super long weekend for me.

I ended up spending my Saturday and Sunday at Starbucks for at least 6 – 7 hours on each of both days. But it was really worth the fight. It is such a great feeling to know that you gave it your best in studying and taking the exam.

I still have 2 more battlefields waiting for me on Thursday. Yep, they are both happening in the same day. Guess what time is the first midterm: it’s at 8AM !! Yes you read it right, it’s at 8AM. That only means one thing, by the end of my second midterm, I will be too tired to even walk home…haha..

Anyway, best of luck for all the Bruins who are also preparing for their midterms!! Study hard, and make it worth to be a Bruin!! 🙂

Bruin Day and Engineering Open House Weekend

This last weekend was such an exciting and tiring weekend in the same time!! On Saturday, we had Bruin Day where we expecting 15,000 people coming to UCLA!!! That’s an insane number of people, but it was so much fun!!! I get to meet a lot of the future Bruins along with their parents. They were all very excited to be a Bruin, and ready to explore more as the Bruin Day went on. There were hundreds of booths from different departments, majors, student clubs and organizations. I was working at one of the Hospitality Tents where we handed out the programs, maps, and UCLA Bru!n Day bags. I can’t lie that I was dead tired at the end of the day, but it was so rewarding. It was such a pleasure, and was so exciting to meet all these enthusiastic and happy freshmen. I got to know some of their stories when they came in the morning: some of them had just got off the plane where others took the train to come to  Bruin Day! Again it made me  realize what a privilege I have to go to UCLA and to be a Bruin!!

I also gave a campus tour along with other Bruin Ambassadors. I was pretty nervous in the beginning. I was really scared at the possibility of the students and their parents not enjoying the tour. Luckily, it went really well. I ended up enjoying giving the tour, and it felt really good to be able to share my experience and story about UCLA to the parents and freshmen. Bruin Day ended around 4pm – 5pm. It was really such a blast to be able to experience Bruin Day. When I came as a transfer student, I didn’t get the chance to attend Bruin Day; however, when I was working on Saturday, I could feel the excitement and the pride that all these freshmen have in becoming future Bruins!!!

The next day, on Sunday, I came back to school to volunteer for the Engineering Open House. I specifically volunteered for the Bio-Engineering Open House. It was yet another unique and fun experience to do the open house. Again as a transfer student, I didn’t get a chance to experience the open house. I believe that Open House is a really great idea to welcome freshmen, and also inform them more about the department and the program that they were admitted to. The students and their parents were very excited to be at UCLA, and met and talked with the faculty and students, who are continuing to medical school, dental school, and graduate programs. We also did a tradition that the Bio-Engineer always do, which is the game BEngo!! Get it, Bio-Engineering Bingo!! 🙂 It was such a fun day over all!!

The students and the parents went home with an Ipad-look-alike binder, a magic disc, and a fun and interesting experience since they were able to hear from the faculties and students.

I was really tired at the end on Sunday, and I have to be honest,  I’m not ready to start today,which marks the beginning of week 3; and that only means 1 thing: study time for the first midterm!! So wish me luck to survive this study week and my first midterm!! Go Bruins!! 🙂

3 day weekend for a Bioengineering student

Hi there, it’s my first time posting a blog for UCLA and I’m really excited; even better it was a long 3 day weekend!! But as I told you, with the second wave of midterms on their way, this only meant one thing for me: a really really long weekend of studying. . .But it’s all good!! I met my study group to study together. My tutor even  came on Monday to help us out even though it’s a holiday!! My professor even came on Monday to still have his office hours!! You gotta love UCLA’s professors for this. Their classes might be challenging, but after all that’s the reason we all come to UCLA: to push ourselves and be challenged ! After finishing my first quarter this previous Fall quarter, my respect and admiration to UCLA’s professors is  has become very high. They are willing to help us out of their office hours when it’s actually beyond their obligation.

I was also cheered during this fun studying weekend by the flowers that I got on Valentine’s day 🙂 Yes, despite the fact that I’m an engineer, I still celebrate Valentine’s day and have fun while studying haha. It was more special this year since the bouquet was made by my boyfriend himself 🙂 It was so much fun to many people with flowers in their hands last Tuesday around the school.

Anyway, it’s a pleasure to meet you all readers and hopefully I can help to give you a glimpse as being a Bruin! I hope everyone had an awesome long weekend everyone!

Mid-Term Marathon

I am happy to announce that I have just successfully completed my mid-term marathon! And by that, I mean that I have had 3 midterms in 3 days and it is finally over! This is without a doubt one of the craziest times in the quarter. Everyone is scrambling to find time to study and learn all the material they forgot from the first half of the year.  Every quarter it seems like mid-terms sneak up on you when you are least expecting them! Often people talk about how stressful finals week is, and how much studying they have to do. Personally, I find the middle of the quarter much more stressful. During finals week there are no classes and no activities so you can fully commit to studying. But in the middle of the quarter, nothing stops for mid-terms. You still have your full course load, as well as your extracurricular activities! You have to find time to study around all of these commitments.

I have to admit that I do find it stressful, but over the course of my time here I have learned to cope much better than I did at first. There are some strategies and things you can do that really put things in perspective. When mid-terms roll around people stop going to their clubs and activities, and they stop hanging out with friends because they want to use the time to study. I have found that this can be the opposite of what you need to do. A couple breaks can be very healthy and will make the time that you are actually studying more productive. Also, when you know that you have commitments or things you want to do it ensures that you adequately budget your time for studying and that when you are studying you are not distracted by things like Facebook! I think the most important thing about studying for mid-terms is to not get too stressed. Taking some time off to hang out with friends, go to your clubs, volunteer, or even going to a movie can make you feel much more relaxed and refreshed.  It is also really good to have a reward waiting for you at the end of mid-terms. For me it was my upcoming trip to Bear Valley with my friends this weekend that helped me get through the last couple of days, and I am sure it will be an amazing trip. I cannot wait to blog about it next week!