Blog of the Peer Advising Leadership Program, College of Natural Resources, UC Berkeley

30 April 2007

Some Good Life in Berkeley

Shopping So, wanna shop around Berkeley? Lots of places to go to. The closest shopping place is on Telegraph Avenue and on Bancroft Street. Besides some well known clothing stores like Adidas, Wet Seal, Urban Outfitter, and Hot Topic, there are unique hat stores, cafes, piercing & tattoo stores, and some local/ethnic clothing stores. Shopping on Telegraph is a great way to get to know the culture and history of Berkeley. Another place for quick shopping is in Emeryville. You can simply jump on the F bus towards San Francisco and arrive in Emeryville in 20 minutes. Besides many typical stores like Ann Taylor, Abercrombie and Fitch, Gap, Victoria’s Secret, etc, there is the AMC movie theater right next to a Barns and Nobles. To get back from Emeryville to Berkeley, you can take the 57 bus and transfer to a 51 bus to get back. If you love shopping in large scale shopping malls, take the F bus or the BART to San Francisco! There are all kinds of shopping area in the city. In addition to shopping in SF, you can tour around the city. Some nice spots are Pier 39, Fisherman’s Warf, Ghirardelli, the Japanese Town, the China town, etc. If you are over eighteen/twenty-one, clubbing in SF can be another experience to explore. Eating Berkeley is known for its great and wide variety of ethnic foods. Besides the well-known “Asian Ghetto” food court on telegraph, there are a lot of eateries on College Avenue and on Shattuck. You can find almost any kinds of food, with student price, around the campus: Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese, Taiwanese, Salads, Italian, Ethiopian, Caribbean, Korean….and lots and lots of good cafés! Hiking/Sports There is the Tilden Park next to Berkeley. I went camping with my friends on Tilden before. The view was beautiful and it was a good hiking experience. We also went kayaking in the park. For rock climbing, I heard that Indian Rock Park at Shattuck Avenue is one of the best places to go to around Berkeley. If you’re out of places to go to, go visit Daily and weekly events are listed there.

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Posted by Amy Lin at 9:41 | Permalink

30 April 2007


Join the new CNR facebook group: The College of Natural Resources (CNR) Network! Be part of this wonderful new group--ask questions, chat with PALs, give advice! We are trying to make this the biggest CNR group on facebook so get all of your friends to join as well!!!

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Posted by Julie Ching at 3:57 | Permalink

29 April 2007

So Long Berkeley - I Will Miss You!

I can’t believe the semester is really coming to an end. I’m so excited to graduate because it is such a huge accomplishment and I am really looking forward to the next chapter in my life, but it is a little bittersweet. I feel like I have finally found myself here in Berkeley and have it all down (managing my time, studying for midterms, taking advantage of what UC Berkeley has to offer besides an incredible education, spending time with friends and experiencing new things) and now it is over. I never imagined all that I would experience here at Cal, it was much more than I expected and honestly some of the best years of my life. If I could do it all over again, there isn’t much I would change. It would be nice to have the wisdom I have now when I was freaking out about an O-Chem or a math midterm, but that’s life. I think I would have also gotten involved in various extracurriculars earlier on instead of just focusing on school. Even though I highly value my education, there is much more that this campus has to offer and it has enriched my experience so much. In fact, I was just talking to my housemate about all the unique opportunities UC Berkeley students have, like hearing all sorts of famous and influential people give talks on campus. If I could give one word of advice, it would be to not get caught up in school work. Not that I don’t think grades are important (because I definitely do) but I think there is so much more to life than a good grade. Try to seek out every opportunity you can to enrich your experience here. I have met so many incredible people, learned so much (inside the classroom and out) and grown as a person. I want to thank UC Berkeley, CNR and all the people who have touched my life for the past four years. It has been an amazing experience. Even though I will miss Cal and all the people that have made it so special to me, I am eager to move forward. This summer I plan on traveling through Europe, camping, spending time in Tahoe, wakeboarding, spending time with friends and family and doing everything my heart desires. Then in August I will be moving down to Long Beach for grad school and the dietetic internship. I am looking forward for what the next chapter in my life has to bring.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 1:02 | Permalink

28 April 2007

Yay! Summer is almost here

My third year at Cal is coming to an end! Finals are coming too quickly and I’m going to miss a lot of my friends who are graduating. Looking back, this semester has been really busy for me. I became a PAL (yay!), joined a new club, and took some really challenging courses. It’s sad (and happy, and sort of scary) to think that next Fall and Spring semester will be my last, but I get to look forward to going to optometry school. This summer will be pretty busy for me too. I plan to take a few classes here at Cal, study for the OAT (Optometry Admissions Test), shadow/volunteer at my uncle’s optometry office, and if I have time, get more sleep! Unfortunately I can’t slack off this summer, but I know it will be worth all the hard work! Good luck on your finals! Come to our office hours and tell us how your semester went and what your plans are for the summer!

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Posted by Julie Ching at 2:58 | Permalink

28 April 2007

Food and Entertainment in Berkeley

Berkeley is just an amazing place to be. Although I don’t have much of a social life, I appreciate all the textures the city has to offer. So what do I mean by that? First of all, a wide, diverse range of food options. Good food is not really hard to find, and there are all kinds of foods from Italian to Japanese to Thai to Indian. Also, many of them are within a decent price range, so the food is quite affordable. I usually try a new restaurant once every week with a couple of friends. And it’s not just Berkeley, although a lot of good food exists locally that you don’t need to travel to San Francisco (and of course San Francisco has some of the best dim summing places).

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Posted by Irene Liao at 8:17 | Permalink

27 April 2007

Berkeley Life

Berkeley is wonderful because it's a college town. Since being here, I feel like I've been able to cross off so many things off my "To do before I die" list. Food Of course there's always asian ghetto. But that's just what it is...ghetto. There are so many nicer restaurants that are just a bus ride away. I always talk about College. There are half a dozen cute, fairly affordable restaurants there. And North Shattuck as well. There's something called the "gourmet ghetto" and a variety of yummy places to eat. Culture I love being at Berkeley because it offers such an array of musical/performing arts. Zellerbach has tons of great shows. You should definitely go to a show before you leave college. I've been to some random shows (like Peking acrobats and Flamenco dancing) and I've loved every minute of it. There are also great concerts given by the University Orchestra every so often. And if you didn't know, Hertz Hall has noon concerts every Wednesday. Plus, I love the shows that Superb puts on. They're a great way to see your favorite artists perform as well as explore those genres of music you're not quite familiar with. The Outdoors Just a 5 minute bus ride up Euclid Ave is the Rose Garden. It's beautiful when its in bloom (which is right now!) and right across from it there's this cute little park that has an awesome stone slide (It's a bit scary but perfect for the adventurous). And farther north there's Tilden Park. Indian Rock is on northside as well. And there's always the Berkeley Marina and Botanical Gardens. Shopping Again, I have to mention College. Jeremy's is a great place to shop. And there a few other nice little boutiques. And if you don't mind used, Telegraph has a great selection of vintage shops. I really like Buffalo Exchange. So go out and explore what Berkeley has to offer. Especially with finals coming around, it'll be a good excuse for you to take a study break :)

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Posted by Wendy Chen at 9:45 | Permalink

27 April 2007

Berkeley is the place to be =D

Berkeley is a greeeaaat place!! I must admit that before coming here, i really disliked Berkeley..the college and the city! If you ask me why, i have no clue! but if you ask me whether i like Berkeley now or not, i would say YES!! I LOVE BERKELEY! its great that i chose to come here (or should i say my family forced me to come here). There is just soooo much going on at Berkeley and there is soooo much to do! One can be kept busy everyday! The food and restaurant is GREAT here with sooooo many unique choices!! i love restaurant hopping so Berkeley is just the right place for me =D I also live in SF so going to/from home is very very convenient..might i add a bit tooooo convenient =P but i like it, im able to go home every week and spend time with my mom and enjoy the amazing food SF has to offer! theres toooo much to explore around Berkeley and i just hope that by the time i graduate, i have explored most of them =D

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Posted by Linda Truong at 1:56 | Permalink

24 April 2007

Berkeley - A Wonderful Place to Live

I honestly don’t even know where to start, there is SO much to do in Berkeley and the Bay Area! Besides getting an amazing education, one of the things I like most about attending UC Berkeley is the fact that there is never a boring day here because there’s so much to do. The outdoors, the city and great food is just the tip of the iceberg. I love the outdoors and pretty much anything to do with the outdoors. I never really appreciated northern California for its beauty until I spent more time down south. Berkeley is a gorgeous place to live, especially in the spring time when everything is green and blooming. I really enjoy taking hikes and have been to several national parks in the Bay Area. But what is nice about Berkeley is that there are two really great places to hike right here – the fire trials and Tilden Park! I have spent a lot of time hiking/running the fire trails while enjoying the view, but just recently I went to Tilden to go on a hike. It was such a great way to spend my Sunday. Not only is there so much going on in Berkeley itself, but there’s so much to do right outside of Berkeley. San Francisco is under 15 miles away and has a great deal to offer. Even if you don’t have a car you should check it out because the city is easy to get to using Bart. I really enjoy spending the day in the city to do some shopping, eat at new restaurants or just walk around and explore what it has to offer. There’s the botanical gardens and Golden Gate Park for a relaxing day, Fisherman’s Warf for some fun and good chowder, Hate street for trendy shopping, the theater district for the ballet and musicals and North beach/the Marina for nightlife. Basically anything you’re looking for you can find in the city. Even though San Francisco has a lot of great food, you don’t have to leave Berkeley to stimulate your taste buds. Coming from a smaller town, I didn’t realize what I was missing out on. The variety of food that Berkeley has to offer is amazing. I have been exposed to a variety of ethnic food and love it. Also, Berkeley is a health conscious city so there’s a plethora of healthy places to choose from when eating out. I don’t think I could ever find as many great places to get a good hardy salad from ever again. Some of my favorite places to eat are, Christopher’s Nothing Fancy (Mexican food, located on San Pablo), the Thai House (Thai food, located on Durant), Intermezzos and Smart Alec’s (Deliciously healthy food/salads, located on Telegraph) and La Note (French food, located on Shattuck). I also love the Sushi House, but this restaurant is actually located in Alameda. I will definitely miss the food here at Berkeley! If you want to share what you like to do around Berkeley and the Bay Area, feel free to come chat with me at office hours.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 1:37 | Permalink

22 April 2007

Finding the right major

Choosing a major is not always the easiest thing to do. Rarely do I met someone who has it all figured out from the get go, and I think coming to Berkeley ready to explore your interests is a great approach. A useful thing you can do is to take classes in subject areas you enjoyed in high school, and even some in areas you know little to nothing about. Declared freshman should consider this as well, because there could be another major waiting for you that fits your interests even better than the one you are intent on now. Researching different majors and the careers they can lead to on the career website can also help if you have any career goals in mind.

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Posted by Liz Dow at 6:30 | Permalink

22 April 2007

Remember to have fun!

It has been my goal since coming to Cal to try something new every semester. My first semester here, after being in wind ensembles since 5th grade and studying jazz in middle and high school, I decided to join the Cal Band. I had never marched in a marching band, but I picked up things quickly and really enjoyed having so many friends right off the bat. Today I am still in the band and can’t wait for the opening Tennessee game next year. If marching isn’t your thing, you can also get involved musically in the university wind ensembles, jazz ensembles, a capella groups and vocal jazz groups.

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Posted by Liz Dow at 6:28 | Permalink

20 April 2007

Tribulations of Choosing a Major

Choosing a major can be a difficult process, but luckily for me, I knew what I was going to major in. The problem was if I wanted to switch majors because of other interests, making sure I wanted to be in the major, or double majoring. Read about why I choose to major in Genetics and Plant Biology in this post.

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Posted by Irene Liao at 2:18 | Permalink

20 April 2007

On Picking My Major

It is difficult as a high school student to select one's major out of hundreds when you come to the online page where titled "Major." How do you do it? For one, there are many resources one could take advantage of at the library or the bookstore that tells you "how to pick your major" or which is "the best major for you." Personally, I have never read these books--not only are they a bit pricy, but they weigh a ton and are usually larger than my chemistry textbook.

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Posted by Adrienne Doi at 8:44 | Permalink

19 April 2007

Something for fun?

Sometimes I find that I am studying too hard and that I need a break from the library. There are many things that one can do in Berkeley, although it might not seem this way in the beginning. Most people just hop on BART and go to San Francisco, but before you do this I ask you to visit these great places in Berkeley. My favorite place to go when it's a nice sunny day is the Berkeley Rose Garden, which is up Euclid Ave. on Northside. If you're into a steep climb, just walk straight up Euclid. If you are more lazy, like some of my friends, you can take the AC Transit bus 65 up to the garden. It is a great place to meditate, study, or just walk around and "smell the roses".

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Posted by Tim Seo at 1:53 | Permalink

19 April 2007

One or two majors out of... hundreds?

How do you pick just one or two majors? When first coming to college, it may seem very overwhelming since at UC Berkeley there are hundreds of different majors, so one may feel as if they don't know where to start. However, I believe that the most important part about picking a major is chosing something that you have an interest in. Do not chose something because your parents, your boyfriends, or your family want you to do. Do something that YOU want to do. I know, this may sound trite and obvious, but you know, there are pressures out there from our loved ones telling us that they want us to do this, but really, who are you living for? You are living for you and only you.

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Posted by Samantha Bell at 2:33 | Permalink

19 April 2007

Other than Academics...

So I know a lot of us come to Berkeley thinking solely about doing well in academics and not doing any other extracurricular acitivities. However, if all of us did that, wouldn't our lives be boring, just studying and doing nothing else to look forward to? So like many Berkeley students, I found that a balance between extracurriculars and academics is great, not only for our social skills, but also for our own sake with regards to not living a boring college career. So what are the extracurriculars I do for my sanity and for my improving my social skills?

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Posted by Samantha Bell at 2:23 | Permalink

19 April 2007

why CNR?

So, this may sound like a pathetic story of "why CNR" but here it goes. So when applying for Berkeley and filling out the application, I checked on Genetics and Plant Biology, not knowing that it was either in CNR, or that it was different from the MCB major with an emphasis on genetics. So after attending CalSO on June 6-7, I realized that genetics and plant biology was mainly about plants (I know.. it seems pretty obvious from the title of the major..but I was a stupid senior maybe?) and that it was in the college of natural resources. I wasn't really sure what to think about being accepted to the college of natural resources. I actually wasn't even aware that there was more than one college in all of UC Berkeley. So when I got into a different college than L&S, I wasn't sure how to feel. So what did I do?

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Posted by Samantha Bell at 2:15 | Permalink

19 April 2007

on picking a major in CNR

CNR certainly does have plenty of majors to choose from, especially if you are looking for something in the biological sciences. Ultimately, it comes down to which fields and subjects interest you the most, as well as your postgraduate career goals... Interested in biology at the microscopic level? Consider microbial biology, one of the larger majors in CNR that guessed it, microbes! Microbio is a great major especially if you plan to pursue professional school, as well has graduate work in the sciences. If the environment peaks your interest, CNR has a host of majors that you should check out, including environmental sciences, forestry, conservation resource studies, society and environment, forestry, and molecular environmental biology. Note that each of these majors have different emphases or "tracks"; for example, forestry has a social sciences track versus a biological sciences track. Review them carefully, as their requirements are quite different, especially at the upper division level. My own biased opinion, however, will lead me to recommend nutritional own major, ahem. The department has three tracks: physiology and metabolism (for students planning for professional or graduate school), dietetics (which specifically trains students for a career as a dietician), and toxicology (which is also a great major for professional and graduate school). Confused about which major suits you best? Talk to your faculty advisors, or drop by our own PAL office hours to chat.

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Posted by Alex Lau at 9:38 | Permalink

18 April 2007

Choosing a Major

I chose to pursue the dietetics major because I knew I wanted to work in a health field that dealt with how food impacts our body. With a food allergy, I was especially sensitive to what food was made of and what negative effects could have arisen, had I consumed that food. Having this awareness made me want to share my experiences with others, and becoming a dietitian seemed to fit my desire. Fortunately, my passion has not changed since freshman year, and I still hope to be a person who can educate and inform others about the nutritional implications of a person’s diet. However, even in my first few years at Berkeley, I was very uncertain about whether or not my major was the right one, whether I should just forget the sciences and pursue a music degree, or a if I should choose a different career path. I decided to investigate all of my insecurities by taking a few classes to test my appetite. Because I was so interested in music theory and improving my musical skills as a singer, I thought that I might double major in music. However, after taking a few music classes and seeing how many classes I would have to take in addition to the nutrition classes, I decided that I could satisfy my musical desires by joining musical groups outside of the classroom. I also considered becoming a pharmacist, after achieving my BS in nutritional science. However, I realized that this goal was only encouraged by my parents, by the money a pharmacist can make and by the practicality of the job. For me, my passion did not lie in making money or choosing a path made by my parents. I knew that my enthusiasm lied in nutrition and becoming a registered dietitian would allow me to share that. In the end, I learned that determining my major was a matter of knowing what I wanted, why I wanted it and who I was trying to please. After exploring all my opportunities with different volunteer experiences and talking to various people, I could identify my interests more clearly. I highly encourage you to explore different clubs or organizations to get a better idea of what your interests are. Feel free to read our past blogs to get ideas on extracurricular opportunities if you are still searching. And as always, we have our open office hours where you can talk about your concerns about choosing the right major for you!

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Posted by Crystal Kwan at 7:35 | Permalink

18 April 2007


So what should my major be in CNR? There are sooo many to choose from!! I will say, pick the one that most intrigues you-the ones that you think you will enjoy and learn a lot from instead of having burdens of taking specific class requirements,etc. You should have a fun fun time in all your classes and feel that studying is a priviledge. You should not be too stressed about your major after determining one and enjoy every aspect of it. What is my major and why did i choose it? Im a nutrisci-physiology and metabolism major and the reason i chose it was because im just absolutely fascinated and excited when it comes to talking about food and nutrition and body. I love all the classes im taking and enjoy everything that I am learning! It is very interested and fun! A funny story actually made me decide to major in nutrisci instead of other pre-med majors like MCB: one day i was watching TV and a couple of food scientists for Baskin Robbins were trying to come up with new flavors in the food lab. That became a dream job because not only do i get to come up with cool flavors, i will get to taste and critique it afterwards! Also, because of my love for food and how it affects the body really makes me talk all day. so yeah, if you have any questions on nutrisci majors..esp physiology and metabolism, im surely here to try my best to help! =D

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Posted by Linda Truong at 2:27 | Permalink

18 April 2007


Why did I pick my major? For all of the UCs that I applied to, I put the usual molecular biology down, but Cal offered something different: Molecular Environmental Biology. I chose MEB because it sounded interesting. I knew I wanted to do something in science, but at the time that I was applying, I didn’t know exactly what yet. I looked online for more information about the major and instantly knew that MEB was exactly what I wanted to do. It mixed two things I am really interested in: environmental issues and public health/science. One thing I really like about MEB, now that I am in it, is that it isn’t specifically a pre-med major; there are lots of career options for me to choose from. The courses offered in MEB are so vast that I feel I have a better overall understanding of many health and environment issues, rather than focusing on something specific. I take the classes that a lot of MCB and IB students are taking, but I also take the classes that let me apply that science to something important. For example, ESPM 167: Environmental Health and Development let me use my understanding of biology to see how environmental toxins affect us, and what we can do to change it. Being in MEB has its perks! It’s in CNR so I get the small college warmth with the big university resources. The MEB advisors are amazing and really care about the students. I feel completely comfortable asking them questions and I don’t have to wait a long time to see them. If you have any questions about MEB feel free to drop by my office hours or email us at:

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Posted by Julie Ching at 0:21 | Permalink

17 April 2007

My Current Extracurricular Activities

One of the reasons I love Berkeley so much is that you can never be bored. Really! There are always academic/career lectures, forums, symposiums, shows…and all kinds of events that you can think of! In addition to the Taiwanese Student Association, Pre-Medical Honor Society, intramural basketball, and volunteering in YWCA from my “Life outside of class~” blog entry on September 18th, 2006, I am going to share some of my current activities with you. Ever since my junior year, I am devoting most of my time in a molecular toxicology lab. After a semester of basic lab technique training and with the help of my research mentor, I developed my honors thesis. My research focuses on a neural enzyme and I study the function and the health effects of this enzyme in cells. Working in a lab has been one of the most rewarding experiences for me. It leads me to the world of basic science research. It also shows me that medical school, pharmacy school, or optometry school is not the only option after graduating with a biology degree. There is the choice of graduate school. Being a scientist is actually really cool! In addition, on Fridays, I volunteer in the Alta Bates Medical center. I’ve been volunteering in the hospital since I was in second year. This experience has been pulling me to pursue a career in medicine. Volunteering in a hospital, I observed physician-patient interactions. I also see the interaction between different sectors such as MD’s, nurse, physical therapists, and pharmacists. As a volunteer, I saw many patients’ suffering through pain and I also shared many patients’ happiness when they gradually recover. The greatest lesson I learned is to cherish life.

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Posted by Amy Lin at 3:21 | Permalink

17 April 2007

the MEB major

I chose to come to the College of Natural Resources(CNR), UC Berkeley, three years ago and I have never regretted. Being a student in CNR is like attending a private college while still having the resources and supports from a big university. I came into Berkeley as a Natural Resources undeclared student. However, after the major presentations at the CALSO orientation, I declared my major, Molecular Environmental Biology(MEB), on that day. There are six concentrations in MEB: Animal Health and Behavior, Biodiversity, Ecology, Environment and Human Health, Organisms & Environment, and Microbiology. Being an MEB major prepares you to become a scientist in your specific area of interest. Whether you want to pursuit a career in veterinarian, a medical doctor, a environmental scientist, a public health advocate, a journalist, a dentist, a nurse, a social worker, a counselor, or you haven’t decided yet, being an MEB major leads you towards your career goal. Although the MEB major requirements include a broad array of lower division science classes, its flexible upper division requirement allows you to pick your specific area of interest. The MEB curriculum is flexible yet comprehensive to satisfy most of the pre-health requirements. As a pre-medical student, I find it easy to complete both a B.S. degree and all the medical school requirements. Besides satisfaction in my major, I greatly enjoy CNR’s personal and caring professors, advisors, and environment. The peer advising leadership program and undergraduate research opportunity I received from CNR are the most rewarding experiences I’ve had at Cal. In addition, I found friends who share the same passion and same career goal as me within CNR. Being a student of CNR definitely made my college life more enjoyable and more fulfilling. Come to CAL DAY, which is this Saturday to check out the programs from College of Natural Resources! Hope to see you there!! Amy

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Posted by Amy Lin at 3:01 | Permalink

17 April 2007

What's your major?

I feel like half the people I meet at Cal are MCB majors. Not to dump on MCB, it's a wonderful major, but most people choose it as a default. If you are one of those "defaulters", not only in MCB or any other major, seriously reconsider why you're studying what you are. Is it because you want to make your parents happy? Is it because all your friends are studying it? Is it because you really don't know what you want to do? If you're undeclared, think about what you honestly like. If you're not a science/math person, don't be science math major! Your major should be something that to some degree, is enjoyable. Also, think about what are you good at. Usually, these two go together and can help you narrow your focus way down. If you have an idea of what kind of career you want to pursue, it could help to pick a concentration that helps you reach that goal. Take some courses from different departments. Fulfilling your breadths and AC requirements can help you do this. Talk to advisors and other people who are in the majors that you're interested in. They can help you get a realistic picture of what the major is like and the kind of courses it entails. And if all of this fails and you still end up not knowing what you want to study or find yourself constantly switching majors, take heart. Your major doesn't determine the the kind of career you're going to have or who you are. At the very least, college should be a place where you can explore many different things and have the freedom to do what makes you happy. If you have questions or are super stressed about these issues, come talk to us in office hours!

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Posted by Wendy Chen at 4:45 | Permalink

16 April 2007

Have You Picked a Major?

Picking your major is the first step in reaching your future career goals. Even though it is very important, keep in mind that it’s okay to take your time to figure out what is best for you. I have a friend who came in as a psychology major, switched to intended public health, then intended pre-dental hygienist and is now back to psychology. With all the switching and exploring she did, she is still graduating on time. The point is, everyone has to figure out what is best for them in their own time and what is most important is that you find something you love. Here are some general tips on how to pick a major that is right for you: 1. Think about your interests and how you could turn what you enjoy into a career. For me, I have always had an interest in nutrition and physical fitness, so I decided on dietetics. 2. Once you have narrowed it down to a couple of majors that encompass your interests take a core, introductory class from each major. You can get a general sense of each major through these classes and hopefully can narrow it down a bit more. Also, this is a great way to experience all the different kinds of classes UC Berkeley has to offer. When I took NST 10, it confirmed my decision to major in dietetics. 3. Next, you should make an appointment with the advisor for the major(s) you’re interested in. You can discuss the details of the major and possible careers options that are available after graduation. This should help you narrow it down even more. Discussing my major with my advisor was really helpful because she helped me map out my classes. 4. Lastly, if you still need some help deciding on a major, I would suggest talking to students who are currently in the major. Often current students can provide you with the most valuable information about what classes to take and when. Don’t forget that that’s what PALs are here for. So if you want to discuss possible majors, come by our office hours. We would love to help!

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 1:41 | Permalink

13 April 2007

An Update on My Extracurriculars

Previously, I wrote a blog about what I do besides studying and going to classes. Many of those activities have not changed, but I’ll update on some. I’ve also participated in a few other clubs, but I haven’t been keeping up with them. Habitat for Humanity: a wonderful club to get to know new people and help out not just with building affordable houses, but also helping at food banks, street meals, conservation projects, and retirement homes around the East Bay. Being a part of this club also introduced me to Berkeley Thai Brunch.

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Posted by Irene Liao at 1:07 | Permalink

13 April 2007

other stuff besides academics...

Extracurricular activities? What else do I do besides going to and from class, studying, eating, and talking to friends and family? Im in several clubs at UCB one of which is AMSA (American Medical Student Association). I have been in AMSA for 3 years now and has been Issues Chair for 2 years. Being Issues Chair is pretty fun except it requires a loooooot of work! I prepare for AMSA's annual Health Career Fair by inviting guests of different professions in the health field (ie, doctors, podiatrist, dentists, vets, optometrists, researcher, etc, etc). I also try to dig up current issues people are interested in and have a event/meeting where i invite a guest speaker to discuss about that issue. Besides AMSA, Im also in the wonderful CNR PAL program where i get to learn a whole lot more than i already know about CNR! It has been a really great experience and i really enjoy working with the people in it =) I dont know if calling "research" extracurricular but i have been doing research for Dr. Nancy Amy for while. Unfortunately we didnt get to work on a particular special project but im hoping that i will be able to next year =) but yeah, i may have a few more extracurricular activities i do up my sleeve, if you want to know more about anything, just talk to me =D

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Posted by Linda Truong at 0:38 | Permalink

11 April 2007

My Extracurriculars

In the rare event that I’m not in class, studying in the library for class or holding office hours for PAL, you can usually find me in a club meeting! I’m involved in AAHS (Asian American Health Society) as the treasurer intern. We have tons of pre-medical, pre-health events held on campus throughout the semester, so be sure to check our website, or look for flyers around campus. AAHS also has a mentorship program where an upper div. student helps mentor a lower div. student and I recently started mentoring a freshman. In fact, tonight we have a Telebears-info session in 108 Wheeler, 6:00pm—come by if you have any questions or are looking for some interesting classes to take next semester! I’m also in Foresight, the pre-optometry club on campus. It’s a great club especially if you are interested in applying to Cal’s Optometry school since they have numerous faculties come by and give advice. I also volunteer for Project Homeless Connect, a non-profit organization in San Francisco (and I think around the country) where the homeless can get free healthcare (optometry, dentistry, medical) and other valuable services like free phone calls, shelter info and free books. It’s really fun and you get to meet a lot of cool people. If you want more information, be sure to check out the PHC website. Come by to our office hours (now near the front doors of Mulford) to tell us what you do in your spare time!

Continue reading "My Extracurriculars" »

Posted by Julie Ching at 9:45 | Permalink

11 April 2007

Extracurricular Burnout

Senior year. There is no time for senioritus. Instead of keeping up with reading assignments, I'm attending meetings, running meetings, staying up late and waking up late, day after day. Agh! I need another spring break! But I wouldn't have it any other way. Academics is simply one part of college life. Although it is the core reason we are here, there's so much else we can do. Coming and going to school and that's it--how boring that would be. I've experienced so much and learned so much from so many people and situations through extracurriculars. If it weren't for extracurriculars, I wouldn't have much to look back on. Although participating in so many things takes a lot of my time and energy, it fills up my otherwise unproductive and unstructured time. Some extracurriculars are just fun. Others are to serve and they're fun. I recommend becoming a CNR peer advisor or joining the CNR student council. Serving your community and future CNR students is a rewarding experience, and I'll be proud when I look back at my time doing these activities, which are too many to list here ;P. (I would like to mention the Cal Forestry Club, however. I've been involved in various clubs and organizations over the years, but Forestry Club has been my anchor, my consistency in an fluxuating life.) It's like a duty to me to serve CNR. Duty and honor--fiat lux.

Continue reading "Extracurricular Burnout" »

Posted by Gina Lopez at 9:38 | Permalink

10 April 2007

Fun (and enlightening) Activities

Besides PAL, I also work as an SM (security monitor) at Unit 3. That's right, I'm the strict lady that makes sure no shady people get into the dorms! I also volunteer at First Presbyterian's bi-monthly Street Meal. Volunteers help cook massive amounts of food and then serve it to the homeless and hungry. It's a great way to serve the community and you get to have interesting conversations with the diverse population of Berkeley. I'm also part of a Christian fellowship on Campus called ICA (formerly known as the Navigators). We have weekly bible studies in a small group setting as well as larger meetings where everyone comes together to learn and fellowship. I attend church as well at the Berkeley Mosaic, where I will begin work with the children: either taking care of those in the nursery or teaching Sunday school to the older kids. These extracurriculars are what really make my college experience complete. School is great, but I learn the most in situations and experiences where I can't rely on academics for the answer. So I encourage you, if you haven't already, to join a group or find an internship. You'll gain a lot of valuable experience, and if nothing else, something to add to your impressive resume.

Continue reading "Fun (and enlightening) Activities" »

Posted by Wendy Chen at 7:16 | Permalink

10 April 2007

My Extracurricular Activities

In addition to being a PAL for CNR, I am also a dietetic assistant at Children’s Hospital in Oakland. I am learning a lot about customer service and what processes are involved for providing meals to patients staying at the hospital. This is also my first paid job, so I am finally learning how to balance school, work and fun. More recently, I became a student intern for the New Haven Unified School District Food Service in Union City. This was my school district growing up, so I have a personal interest in wanting to help and learn from the director of food services. So far, I was able to create an elementary breakfast program promoting National School Breakfast Week for children. Currently, I am working on the nutrient analysis of elementary school lunches. It is great to see how what I learn in my classes tie directly into this volunteering experience. Also, me and 3 other dietetic students volunteer weekly with the Oakland Based Urban Garden (OBUGS) after school program. We work with elementary students to help water, harvest and plant vegetables in the garden. Somedays, we even get to cook what we grew! If you’re interested in this organization, you can check out to find out more about their work study program or opportunities to volunteer. Finally, I am also apart of a Christian fellowship on campus, Acts2Fellowship, which is associated with Gracepoint Fellowship Church in Berkeley. Since joining my freshman year, I have gained lifelong friends and have seen God working tremendously in my life. Yes, all of these things require a certain time commitment and the ability to balance everything at once. However, I’ve gained so many memories, friends, and skills in these experiences. I encourage you to talk to any of us PALs about opportunities to volunteer/work or for suggestions on how to balance school and extra curricular activities.

Continue reading "My Extracurricular Activities" »

Posted by Crystal Kwan at 5:15 | Permalink

10 April 2007

A Little about Extracurriculars

Since I last wrote about my extrcurriculars (Having Fun Ouside of Class) things haven’t changed too much. I am still the co-president of the Student Dietetic Association (SDA), am obviously still a PAL  and I still work at Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland. Something new that I added on this semester is the position as a Research Assistant for Dr. Felming. She is the chief investigator of a study that is assessing a nutrition and fitness intervention in a population of children at risk for developing Type Two Diabetes. As a research assistant, I am helping with the development of standard nutrition lessons so that one day this intervention program can go national. It has been a great opportunity for me to use my nutrition skills and demonstrate my creativity. To be involved in such an important project that happens to be conducted by one of my favorite professors on campus has been very exciting. Since I have already written about my extracurriculars, I thought I would write a little about what else I like to do with my free time. Lately I have been enjoying the outdoors. Anytime there is beautiful whether I take advantage of it! When I visit back home, I really enjoy taking my dogs to the beach. Also, over spring break I went snowboarding at Heavenly, a ski resort in South Lake Tahoe. I had never boarded on the south shore, but I heard the view of the lake was beautiful so I was eager to try it. I had a wonderful time and the view was gorgeous. That trip made me realized that I need to make more time in my busy schedule to go snowboarding more often. It is really important to do things that you enjoy in your free time. That’s what I love about extracurriculars; they are something you do because you love them and you can always change it up or add more at any time. I highly suggest getting involved in extracurriculars. Whether it’s academically related, like becoming involved in a club or research project or socially related like joining the ski team, Berkeley has a lot to offer!

Continue reading "A Little about Extracurriculars" »

Posted by Jennifer Powers at 0:59 | Permalink

09 April 2007

Why CNR?

When I knew I wanted to be an Environmental Science major, transferring into the College of Natural Resources was a clear choice. I could have remained in L&S as an ES major, but I felt I could get more attention as a student in CNR. I was tired of having to see a different advisor with a different philosophy every time I needed a question answered. I didn’t like not knowing a single person when I went into Campbell Hall and sometimes having to wait over a week for an appointment with an advisor. A small, friendly college looked very appealing when declaring my major, and I couldn’t have made a better choice.

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Posted by Liz Dow at 9:57 | Permalink

09 April 2007

Extracurricular Activities

I'm involved in several extracurricular activities across campus and I have to say that I love everyone of them. The first and most important extracurricular is the PAL program. I look forward to my office hours every week and get a lot of enjoyment out of advising students. The second program I'm in is Berkeley Model United Nations. This club involves planning a model UN conference for high school students once a year. There are usually over 1000 students who attend each year so the amount of planning and dedication throughout the year is intensive. The third program I'm in is Renters Legal Assistance. I'm a director for this organization so the amount of time and energy I have to dedicate is fairly substantial. The purpose of the organization is to provide information to students as well as the community about their rights as renters. Although many of the extracurricular activities I'm involved in require a large investment of time, the experiences and friends I have gained through each have made them all worth while.

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Posted by Jimmy Rothschild at 9:50 | Permalink

08 April 2007

Coming to CNR

When I applied for college, I did not quite understand the whole “college within a university” idea. I had only thought that one school did that, but apparently I did not do my homework (nor did UCSD’s college system help). But I applied into the College of Natural Resources (CNR) because 1) it had my major (GPB) and 2) it had other majors I was also considering of applying into. Little did I know about the small college size and opportunities a small college can offer. Frankly, I thought my chances of getting into Cal were very slim, so why bother finding more about it?

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Posted by Irene Liao at 0:45 | Permalink

06 April 2007

Why CNR?

I applied to CNR (unknowingly) under the Molecular Environmental Biology (MEB) major because I knew that I wanted to do something in science and health, but I didn’t know exactly what. As I was selecting the majors that I wanted to apply under for the UC application, MEB immediately stuck out—Cal was the only school that offered this major and it seemed interesting. I had an interest in science, but I was also interested in renewable resources and environmental awareness. Environmental Science major seemed good, but I liked the fact that MEB included a lot of pre-health courses, which kept my options open. So after doing a little more research online, I knew MEB was exactly what I wanted to major in.

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Posted by Julie Ching at 3:35 | Permalink

06 April 2007


Being in CNR for the past 3 years was an amazing experience! classes are fun, teachers are awesome, people are great! how did i get into CNR? Honestly, when applying to college, i didnt even know which box i marked for application. After receiving my acceptance did i find out that i was accepted to CNR as undeclared. I sort of knew then that i was interested in nutrition and food so i just stuck with it and now im loving it! im glad i marked CNR unknowingly when filling out my apps =D must be fate that put me in CNR and allowing me to enjoy my time here!! I really like how CNR is a small knitted college that encourages faculty/student interaction and gives help to their students at an amazing rate and speed! CNR IS JUST AWESOME!!!!! any questions? ask me =D

Continue reading "CNR?" »

Posted by Linda Truong at 1:54 | Permalink

05 April 2007

Why I chose CNR

I came to Berkeley knowing that I wanted to major in Nutritional Science. Because I grew up with a food allergy since I was a child, I wanted to learn more about foods and how they affected our body. I didn’t know anything about CNR, but was pleasantly surprised learning about the college at Cal Day. I remember there was a panel of students who positively talked about their experiences getting to know their professors and having so many opportunities to expand their education through research and studying abroad. Through the years, I’ve learned that their accounts were true of most students here at CNR. I’ve experienced a close community that genuinely cares for its students. I find that faculty doors are always open when I have even the smallest question and the CNR sponsored programs help to push my goals outside out of the classroom. I’m so thankful for where I ended up and hope that you will experience some of the benefits that so many of us have discovered!

Continue reading "Why I chose CNR" »

Posted by Crystal Kwan at 5:40 | Permalink

05 April 2007

I love my college

I applied to Cal knowing what I wanted to study, Environmental Sciences, but I was surprised and excited to find out that my major was part of an entire college dedicated to the study of natural resources. Berkeley is a competitive school, but being in CNR fosters a warm home-y feeling. It definitely is a small community environment in a big school. The people in CNR genuinely care about you; advisors are available almost all the time, they know you by a first name basis, and provide all the help and support you need. Everyone just seems friendlier and more laid back. Classes tend to be smaller, and you have more opportunities to get to know your professors and fellow students. Everyone is very passionate about what they're studying. When I get tired and stressed out from school and when I feel like dropping out, it's comforting to know that I have a supportive college behind me. Like I've said before, as corny as it may seem, CNR really is the best kept secret on campus that everyone should learn more about.

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Posted by Wendy Chen at 1:17 | Permalink

05 April 2007

Oh CNR...

I actually decided to transfer to CNR after my freshman year because of the nutritional sciences major. The department is small and intimate, while the subject matter is focused and directly relevant to our everyday lives. I really wanted a major that I could apply to health, not only in the context of medicine and research, but also to the meals we take and daily activities we engage in, and nutritional sciences does just that. It links biological sciences to daily, mundane activities. In the last two years of being in CNR, I've become exposed to many of the benefits that the college itself has to offer. Small classes and student-professor interactions are definitely some of the strongest points of CNR. Office hours are extremely easy to attend (very rarely are they crowded, since class sizes are small) and professors are really interested in helping students learn and engaging them in the course material. Advising within the college is also superb. The faculty advising program is awesome, since you receive help from profs who are involved in your own field of study. The department advisors are also extremely helpful, especially when it comes down to enrollment. CNR does feel very much like a small, 'private' college in the midst of a large public university, and I'm really glad to be a part of it.

Continue reading "Oh CNR..." »

Posted by Alex Lau at 9:40 | Permalink

04 April 2007


CNR truly gives you the private school treatment for the public school price. Throughout my years here, I have had many friends who have decided to do Molecular and Cell Biology or Integrative Biology in the college of Letters and Sciences and have really regretted their decision after seeing how much I enjoy CNR!

Continue reading "WHY CNR?" »

Posted by Jenn Quan at 2:23 | Permalink

04 April 2007

Why CNR? Why Dietetics?

Thinking back of why I chose to transfer to the Dietetics program in College of Natural Resources (CNR), it has been the right decision in my life. This semester, I can feel much stronger that I am moving on to another stage of my life to pursue my career goal as a dietitian. After these years of upper division courses in the Dietetics program, it has really prepared me to be a well-rounded person. Not only to be a student studying nutrition, but the program has also exposed me to the real world learning how a company is structured, the official statements being used, working with people at different age groups, diverse backgrounds, research experience with wonderful professors, etc. Joining the Peer Advisor Leadership program (PAL) has been another important highlight in my college years! The wonderful personal attention that I can from my advisors and the Student Resource Center have helped me a lot during all these semesters at Cal. Especially as a transfer student, I have fewer semesters compared to other students entering as a freshman. The resources that I could get from CNR has been a huge contribution to my success at college and a wonderful stepping stone to prepare me entering the real world outside. Being a Lead PAL is a way that I can give back to the college with all the experience that I earned throughout the years. The growing of the PAL program has enriched students’ experience in CNR and finishing their degrees here. It is always good to have a peer to talk to and share what they have gone through. There are also computer labs and study space available at the Student Resource Center. With all the wonderful faculties, peers, and resources available in CNR, our staffs are still seeking to improve the quality of our services. With all these wonderful qualities in the college, what can I ask for more? Are you also interested in CNR or to learn more about our programs? Please visit our college website or come to 260 Mulford for more information.

Continue reading "Why CNR? Why Dietetics?" »

Posted by Jelyn A. Evangelista at 5:41 | Permalink

04 April 2007

Why I Came

I applied to Cal because it was easy. There was a box on the (paper) application, and I checked it. After looking at all the options each school I applied to had to offer, Berkeley became my top choice for a number of reasons. I heard that Berkeley was really prestigious--sounded good to me. I knew nothing about academia, except that I was going to jump into it and come out prepared to save the world. Cal has a whole college that prepares people to save the world through the environment. That really impressed me. I had visited Cal through a UC outreach program for high school students. I was impressed by the Campanile, the view of the Bay, the pedistrians and bicyclists everywhere instead of driving around in cars like drones, the green open space on campus, and most of all: the school spirit. GO BEARS! To all you new Cal students, welcome. Now I'm interested in hearing your stories. Send me an e-mail at

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Posted by Gina Lopez at 0:24 | Permalink

03 April 2007

The Inevitable Stress… How to Deal

Stress… there is no avoiding it. Whether it’s positive stress or negative stress, we are all going to have to deal with it at one point or another. The best way to handle stress is to realize that it will pass and it is really not all that bad if you know how to handle it. Since it is my senior year and I am currently deciding my future while dealing with the regular stressors in my life, I have come to realize two important aspects of managing stress. First and foremost, stay positive! It may be hard to stay upbeat when you have a lot on your shoulders, but I guarantee you will be able to handle a lot more and be more efficient if you stay positive. Often when I’m stressed I can tell by the kind of mood I’m in. When I feel I’m not in the best mood I’ll try to change it. For me spending sometime outdoors or exercising gives me that boost I need. This may sound cheesy, but I have even put up a smiley face post-it on my door before leaving my house for a long, stressful day. When I came home I saw it and it really did put a smile on my face. Almost as important as staying positive is realizing that you don’t have to deal with your stress all alone. Like I said, often you can tell someone is stressed by the kind of mood their in; my friends will catch on and ask me if I want to talk about it. I find that talking with my friends and family about what is stressing me out helps a great deal; sometimes just hearing it out loud helps you resolve a huge chunk of your stress. Everyone deals with stress, so talking to someone who has been through it can help too. If you don’t feel comfortable talking with your friends or family, remember you can always talk to a PAL. Please come to office hours if you need someone to talk to. For more detailed tips on stress management, check out my previous blog called “Feeling Stressed.”

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 3:24 | Permalink



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