April 4, 2009 2:10 PM

Is Berkeley everything you expected it to be?

I participate in Cal Teach which is a program at Cal that pairs Cal students with math and science classrooms in the Bay Area. I help out in an environmental science class at Oakland High School working with seniors. I've really enjoyed the opportunity to learn more about teaching, but also the connections I've made with the students has been really rewarding. One of then turned to me and asked "Is Berkeley everything you expected it to be?" and to that I replied "Everything and more." Every day I walk through campus I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to be here. I've enjoyed the majority of classes and the opportunity to do research the most. At breakfast this morning my roommate and I were talking about friends etc., and commented on how I have so many friends from my classes which is something she has never really had.

From my personal experience I think that ESPM classes tend to be smaller in size and you get the opportunity to get to know each other better. I love all of the many field trips I've been on for classes and am sad this might be the only one without a weekend trip. One of the things my students ask me about Berkeley a lot is "Is it hard?" and ya it is hard, but it's rewarding being challenged academically and succeeding. While I may have wined about not getting an A on a paper, I definitely have become a better writer because it forces me to rise to a higher level. Cal is also a lot of fun too, which often times gets forgotten or isn't asked about. I enjoy being close to San Francisco, lots of parks up in the hills, friends, student organizations, amazing coffee shops, unique places to shop for clothes and food (LOVE Berkeley Bowl), and laying on the grass outside Mulford on a sunny day.

Marissa Ponder | Permalink | Comment on this article | Comments (0)

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