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

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

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

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

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

20 March 2007

Ready for Spring Break?

I can’t believe it is already time for Spring Break; it really snuck up on me this year. I’ve been so busy that I am shocked how fast my last semester here at Cal is going by. However, just because I know my undergraduate experience is coming to an end soon and I will miss it greatly, doesn’t mean I’m not ready to enjoy Spring Break! I decided to keep my break fairly low key since I am in need of some down time. Luckily, I only work one day so I will have plenty of time for “me time.” I am excited to see my three best friends from back home (I live with one now, but it’s been a while since all four of us have been in the same place at the same time). One of them is graduating from beauty school, so I am thrilled to help her celebrate. I am also looking forward to hanging out at home with my family and my puppy.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 3:14 | Permalink

14 March 2007

Why is it called a MID-Term Anyways?

Most of us have come to realize that midterms don’t only occur midway through the term, often we have several “mid” terms for one class so it is important to stay on top of the material. Whether we like it or not, it’s midterm season again (or always for some of us), so how about some tips on how to study? 1. If possible, it’s best to try to stay on top of the material throughout the semester so you don’t feel rushed when it’s time to study for the midterm. If not, start going over the material early enough so you don’t have to cram (unless that’s the only way you can study). Studies have shown that people remember the material much better if it’s learned over a longer period of time, thus, helping you do better on this midterm, possibly the cumulative final as well and most importantly it will stick with you longer.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 0:37 | Permalink

07 March 2007

All My Favorites

I’m sure just about everyone will agree that watching great movies or television shows, listening to your favorite music or eating good food are all great ways to have some fun and relieve stress too. Not only are these activities fun but they are things you can enjoy with others. I really enjoy mixing things up and having a variety in my life, which is the case with all my favorites.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 9:45 | Permalink

26 February 2007

Who I Admire Most

I have several role models, each for different aspects of my life. However, the number one role model in my life is my mom. I have learned a lot from my mom and without her in my life I would not be the person I am today. She brings out the best in me and yet never has expected anything from me. She is caring, compassionate, and giving. I know that no matter what, I can always depend on my mom when I really need her and I hope to return the favor to my loved ones. To sum it up, I look up to my mom because I learn how to be an overall good person from her. I have a couple role models when it comes to school and my future career. I look up to two of my lecturers, Mary Mead and Katie Clark. I have gotten to know Mary over the past couple of years and have found her to be a cheerful, friendly, and kindhearted person who is always willing to lend me a hand. I also look up to her because she has a wide variety of experience in the field of dietetics. Similarly, when I think of Katie, I think of someone who has done it all. She has many life experiences to draw from and has already accomplished so much at such a young age. For example, she has her own practice a RD, something that I would like to have one day. Lastly, my aunt has always had a huge impact on my life. She is someone who knows what she wants and is not afraid to go out and get it, no matter what it takes. She understands the importance of having a sense of humor and being able to laugh. She is continuously trying new things and growing as a person. I enjoy spending time with her because I learn a lot by having her as an example. All of my role models contribute something different and unique to my life and I appreciate them all a great deal.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 9:43 | Permalink

01 February 2007

My Two Cents

Word of mouth is one of the top ways to hear about some of the best courses offered at Cal. If you need to fulfill a requirement and have a couple of courses to choose from, I highly suggest that you talk to your peers who have taken the classes or your advisor. It is much better to get an insider’s view rather than choosing blindly. Currently, the PAL Program has a survey out that is getting student feedback on various courses offered at Cal, so soon you will have that resource too. I have enjoyed all my courses (some a little more than others), but a few of them stand out as my favorite classes for one reason or another. First, I really enjoyed Bio 1A. I took it over the summer, so it was a fast passed, tough class that took a lot of time and commitment; however, it was well worth it. If you are interested in general biology then this is the class for you. Don’t be scared off by its reputation as a hard class because it is so interesting that you don’t really notice that the material is tough. What was refreshing about this class is that it covered a wide range of material, yet it was still detailed enough to get a worthwhile experience. Bio 1A was my favorite class up until I took NST103. NST103 is a great course because you learn everything you need to know about how our bodies digest, absorb, and use nutrients. Not only is the material fascinating, but Dr. Fleming is a wonderful professor who truly cares about her students understanding and retaining the information she teaches. You don’t have to be a nutritional science major to appreciate this class, it is knowledge that everyone can enjoy (as long as you have a passion for science and have previously taken biochemistry). Lastly, I would highly recommend PH 162A, a microbiology class that focuses on infectious diseases. This was one of my required courses and I didn’t know what to expect going into it. As the semester progressed I came to love this class. It is a useful class for all to take because you can apply every aspect of it to your life. There were several times in class that I thought, “I have always wondered about that.” This class not only answers a lot of common questions but it goes above and beyond. There are so many amazing classes offered at UC Berkeley that it is hard to go wrong. However, if you are having a hard time choosing your classes don’t forget to use your resources. Come by my office hours if you would like to hear more about these classes or any other classes that I have taken and would suggest you take (especially if you’re a Dietetics major).

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 3:05 | Permalink

24 January 2007

A New Year and Old/New Goals

Welcome back and Happy New Year! With a new year comes new resolutions… but to tell you the truth, I don’t really believe in New Year’s Resolutions. I believe it’s important to constantly be setting new goals and “resolutions” for yourself, and not just once a year. However, since everyone is always talking about their New Year’s Resolutions in January, I do find it a good time to think about my current goals. I always have current goals and long term goals in mind. Currently, my number one goal that is both current and long term is to learn how to deal with stress better. Slowly but surly I have gotten better over the years. I am good at prioritizing and getting things done on time, even under pressure, but I need to work on realizing this. I have found that having a little faith in me goes a long way and makes everything run a lot more smoothly. Having good “stress skills” is important in life because most good things do not come easily. For instance, my other current goal is to get into a combined dietetic internship and master’s degree program. This is a stressful process, as many of my peers will agree, but it is completely worth it because it is something that will ultimately make me happy. Another way I deal with my stress is through spending time with my family and friends, which is actually one of my “resolutions.” It’s easy to get caught up in life as a student at Berkeley, so this semester I think it should be all of our resolutions to spend more time with the people we love. As for my long term goals, they mostly revolve around being happy and staying true to me. I would like to become a registered dietitian with a specialty in pediatrics, travel the world (starting with Venice and Greece), have a family, and stay healthy. I don’t think that’s too much to ask for, do you? ;) Whether you’re making New Year’s Resolutions or setting your current/long terms goals, I would love to help you sort things out during my office hours. Come by Mondays from 12-1 or Tuesdays from 11-12.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 8:57 | Permalink

03 December 2006

How Will You Spend Your Freedom? ;)

Winter break is two weeks away and I can already feel the excitement starting to build up (although we all have to get through finals and even the last round of midterms for some). I think having something fun planned for winter break to look forward to while studying for finals is a great way to get through the end of the semester craziness. Whether you are going on a trip, spending time with friends and family, working for some extra cash, or just taking some time to relax, winter break is something we can all look forward to after such hard work all semester long! This winter break is my last break as an undergraduate, which means I will actually have to do some work on my Graduate/Dietetic Internship applications. Although, I am happy that I will have plenty of time to work on them without having to worry about school work on top of it all. I will also be back and forth between home (Petaluma, only about an hour from here) and Berkeley, since I work at Children’s Hospital in Oakland. I have some fun activities planned as well. I am looking forward to spending some time with my new puppy, Charlie. Puppies need so much attention and training and I am glad that I will have winter break to dedicate much more of my time to him. I also plan on spending some time with my family and my friends from back home that I haven’t seen in a while, making a trip up to Tahoe to go snowboarding, and enjoying the holiday festivities (Christmas is my absolute favorite time of the year!). However, what I am looking forward to most is my trip to the East Coast with my mom and my aunt. We are going to go to New York and Boston and while we are there we will visit some schools that I am applying to. I can’t wait for this trip because I have never been to the East Coast before and we have lots of exciting activities planned. I hope that everyone else plans on enjoying their winter break as much as I am! Make sure to find some time for yourself over break to rejuvenate. Good luck with finals and happy holidays!!!

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 1:31 | Permalink

26 October 2006

Where's Your Favorite Hangout Spot?

I remember when I first got my official tour of the UC Berkeley campus during Cal-So and the campus seemed so huge. It's funny to look back on those days because now that I'm coming up upon my graduation the campus actually seems small. After exploring various parts of the campus and the general campus vicinity, I have come to find my favorite sites to study, hangout, and relax during my down time. Rather than just having one place to study, I have many. Where I have chosen to study has seemed to change each year. Freshman year I liked to study in my dorm room and the common study areas. Sophomore year was my year of intense library studying - 4th floor Moffit, by the windows was my designated spot. Junior year I branched out to various cafes (I suggest finding one that allows customers to use their restroom because after hours of studying and a large coffee/tea to keep you going, having access to a restroom is a must). Lastly, senior year has been a mix of studying at my house, outside, and at cafes - depending on my mood. I think it's important to change up the atmosphere you study in so it's not so monotonous. I like to go places where I'm not confined in a dark room with no natural sunlight, this seems too depressing to me. If you find that the place that you choose to study isn't working for you I urge you to try one of my suggested places. Now, let's get to the good stuff, places I like to go NOT to study. I like to go anywhere with a good view - the top of the fire trails is amazing! In my free time I like to be outdoors; whether it's on campus, in my backyard, or tanning and relaxing at Strawberry Canyon, as long as I'm outdoors and the sun is shinning, I'm happy. Speaking of "good views", one of my favorite places on campus to hangout and kill time in between classes are the Dwinelle benches. Last semester my best friend and I would have our people watching routine every Wednesday during our lunchtime break. We would grab a coffee or Jamba Juice, sit on the Dwinelle benches, chat and do some people watching (lunchtime = prime people watching time!). If you enjoy people watching every now and then, I suggest the Dwinelle benches - it's always a lively area. Although the UC Berkeley campus may seem large at first and it may be hard to find places that best suit you, over time you will find what works best with you. I suggest that you take the time to explore our campus and find new and exciting places. Even though I don't think the campus is quite as large as I first did, there's still many places for me to check out. Just yesterday a fellow PAL told me that the top of Barrows Hall has a fantastic view of the bay on a clear day, this is definitely something I must see. I would love to hear about you're favorite hangout places, so feel free to post a comment on my blog!

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 1:05 | Permalink

16 October 2006

Midterm Blues?

Now that you have been through round one of midterms (why they are called MIDterms, don't ask me) you may be relieved that you are done but also a little worried to get back your grades. If you did well then that is great, but if you did not do quite as well as you would have liked there is no need to panic. We have all been there before and it's important to remember that this is normal. UC Berkeley is a very competitive school and getting straight A's like you may have in high school is very tough. I would first like to say that after being at Cal for a little over three years now I have come to realize that all we students can do is put forth our best effort and hope for the best. However, if you do not do as well as you would like, you have a lot of options. First, if you feel that the test did not measure your capabilities and you know you were well prepared and could have done better it never hurts to talk to your professor or GSI. Explain to them that this test does not represent your abilities and ask for advice about how to do better next time. Sometimes professors are even willing to make an exception to their grading scheme and will allow the remaining tests to count for a larger portion of your grade if you feel you will do better in the future. Second, make sure to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. Find where you experienced problems on the test and try to come up with some solutions to do better next time. For example, if you know you don't do well with multiple choice, rather than picking the right answer from the list, come up with your own answer and see which choice best matches your own. After getting a taste of you professor’s testing style, you will have a better understanding of how to properly prepare for you next exam. Third, if you know that your grade on this test will be too hard to recover from and you need to do well in that course, consider changing your grade to pass no pass (if it is before the deadline) and retake it for a grade, or drop the class (once again, prior to the drop deadline) and take it over again either the following semester or even over the summer so you will have more time to dedicate to doing well in the class. Just remember that one poor grade is not the end of the world nor does it mean that you are a poor student - it is only one obstacle in life that you can make the best of and learn from. You have many options and speaking from some experience, it always seems to workout just fine in the end (sometimes professors say classes aren’t curved in the beginning of the semester but end up curving the class after all; however, don’t depend it). Sometimes just talking about a bad test can make you feel better, so if you ever need someone to vent to I am always willing to listen and offer my assistance. Come by my office hours, Thursdays 9:30-11:30 am, if you have any questions or just feel like chatting.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 7:47 | Permalink

09 October 2006

Feeling Stressed?

People deal with stress differently, some better than others. If you are someone who does not deal with stress very well, don’t worry because it is something that you can work on and improve. I know from first hand experience how hard it is to deal with stress at times, but the important thing to remember is that stress comes and goes. Looking back on all the times you were stressed in the past, just like then, you will get through it again and be stronger for it. Since we can’t completely get rid of stress, especially since we do go to UC Berkeley, we need to learn to manage it. Hopefully after reading this blog, you will learn some new techniques to deal with any stress you experience in your life. The first step in managing your stress is realizing what is causing it. Identifying what causes stress in your life allows you to take some control. Once you identify your stressors start finding ways to decrease the stress that they cause. If midterms stress you out, start studying for them earlier than you normally would. Sometimes just managing your time better will help to reduce stress (see time management blogs). Or if you are having family or relationship problems talk to your loved ones about it. Sometimes just talking to someone who cares and will listen can lift a huge weight of your shoulders. In fact, that’s exactly what we PALs are here for, anytime you need to talk we would love to listen. Besides taking control of what is causing stress in you life it is also important to do things that you know make you happy and less stressed. If you are feeling weighed down with stress, put on a song that you know always pumps you up and lifts your spirits or find another way to get rid of the negative energy caused by stress. If you feel overwhelmed take a few deep breaths and remind yourself that everything will work out, just like it always does. Personally, I like to turn up my iPOD and go for a run to clear my mind. I highly recommend getting outside and releasing some stress by getting some exercise, there’s nothing like endorphins to boost your mood. When it comes down to it, there is no way to eliminate all stress in our lives. If we did that life wouldn’t be as interesting and we would have fewer opportunities to grow and become stronger. Remember that you are not the only one dealing with stress; we all do at one time or another. I know sometimes it may feel that it all comes at once, but once you have overcome the obstacles causing you stress you will feel very accomplished and everything will be great again.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 3:55 | Permalink

25 September 2006

Time Management – An Essential Skill

As most students out there, when I came to Cal I did not really know what to expect. I thought I did a pretty good job staying on top of my work in high school and maintaining a good balance. However, college (especially a top/competitive university like UC Berkeley), is very different from high school. Learning the skill of time management in college is essential and will continue to play an important role in the rest of our lives. When I began my first semester here, I easily became stressed over the work load I was faced with and frequently would call my mom nearly in tears saying, “I don’t know if I can do this?!” She would do her best to calm me down and assure me that if this was something I really wanted (and it was/is) then I could do it. So whenever you feel yourself becoming overwhelmed, just remember all your hard work will pay off in the end. Doing this always helps motivate me. What I found to really help de-stress me is to work on time management. If you follow these seven easy steps, I guarantee you will be a lot more productive with your time. 1. Make a list of everything you have/want to do. 2. Prioritize your items by what is most essential or what is due first. - Priorities may differ from one individual to the next. However, major priorities are things like studying for midterms/finals or completing homework/projects/labs/papers on time. It is important to stay on top of your reading, but it may not need such a large chunk of time as you might think. Try squeezing reading in between classes, on the bus or Bart (if you don’t get car sick), at the gym, while you have some down time, etc. I always carry some form of reading or studying material on me just in case I find some extra time for it. 3. Use your planner! Write down your goals: what you want to accomplish on a certain day, you can even break it down hour by hour. Also, make sure you write down all important dates, i.e. midterms, lab/paper/project due dates, finals, etc., so they don’t sneak up on you. 4. Find what works best for you. What time of the day are you most focused and efficient? For example, I have a hard time studying at night. So instead of staying up super late getting work done and sleeping in the next day (like my housemates) I go to bed early and wake up early because I know I work much better during the day after a good nights’ rest. 5. Knowledge is power. Talk to your peers who have already taken the class you are taking and ask them for advice about how to do well in the course. Also, once you have taken your first midterm or turned in your first lab report you should get a better idea about what is expected of you. If lecture material, not reading, is the main focus of the exams, allocate your time appropriately. 6. Make sure you have “you” time. Everyone needs down time and a little fun to de-stress, so don’t overwork yourself. Whether it’s making time to watch your favorite T.V. show, going to the gym, catching up with your friends, going to the movies, shopping, going to Cal sporting events, it doesn’t matter, just make sure you have time to do what will make you happy. 7. Make sure you get enough sleep. The amount of sleep one needs varies, but if you don’t get the amount of sleep you need, you could get sick or run down and then you really wouldn’t be efficient with your time. When I start to feel really tired or run down, I make sure to get some rest because I know I won’t get much done if I continue to do work. The bottom line is time management comes with experience. It is a process of trial and error and finding what works best for you. College may be a high stress time, but whenever I find myself stressing over the little things I look at the big picture. Do we realize how lucky we are to be students at UC Berkeley?! So many people would love to be in our shoes because it is such an amazing opportunity. Time management is a skill we can prefect during college so that we can make the rest of our lives go a little more smoothly. I urge you to try one of my tips today! :)

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 0:48 | Permalink

17 September 2006

Having Fun Outside of Class

One huge suggestion I would like to make to all CNR students is to take advantage of student groups! Joining a student group is a great way to get involved on campus and meet fellow students with similar interests at the same time (not to mention it helps build that resume). My junior year I joined the Student Dietetic Association (SDA) and looking back on what a wonderful experience it has been, I wish I had joined sooner. Since I am a dietetics major and love nutrition, I decided that I wanted to get involved in something at Cal that would supplement my education. When I heard about SDA I knew it was perfect for me. SDA is a student run group that promotes nutrition on campus in various ways and is open to ALL majors. Some of the benefits of joining SDA are gaining experience in promoting nutrition awareness and answering nutrition related questions while tabling in the dinning commons; getting to know the faculty at SDA hosted student/faculty luncheons; networking with local professionals through contact with BADA (our local dietetic association); making friends with other UC Berkeley students who are also interested in nutrition; and much, much more. There are various leadership opportunities in SDA as well. Currently, I am the SDA's Co-President and love it! Along with the other Co-President, I plan/facilitate SDA's weekly meetings, help organize our events, and basically keep everything organized. Being a part of SDA has helped me apply my nutrition knowledge and also gain important leadership and interpersonal skills. If you have an interest in nutrition, I highly suggest checking it out. The meetings are held every Monday from 4-5pm in room 120 Morgan. Stop by and enjoy delicious and nutritious food! For more information check out our website: http://nature.berkeley.edu/sda/ After getting involved on campus I decided I also wanted to get involved in the community. I am currently volunteering and working at Children's Hospital and Research Center, Oakland. I have volunteered for a couple different nutrition and fitness programs and work as a Dietitian Assistant. It is a really friendly and positive environment and very rewarding. There are many different kinds of volunteer/job opportunities, so if you have any interest at all you should check out the Children's Hospital website: http://www.childrenshospitaloakland.org/ Extracurriculars are a way to build your resume but more importantly are opportunities to have some fun outside of class! I suggest choosing your extracurriculars wisely since there is only so much time we have outside of class/studying. If you have any questions about my extracurriculars or would like some suggestions, come chat with me at my office hours, Thursdays 9:30-11:30 am.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 8:24 | Permalink

13 September 2006

Why PAL?

From the start, I felt comfortable and at home in CNR because I knew whenever I had a question, there was always a smiling face ready to answer it for me. I am so excited to have the opportunity to return the favor by being a CNR Peer Advising Leader. As a fourth year, I feel that I can provide valuable personal experience about a variety of aspects like professors, classes, and clubs. I think that it can be extremely helpful knowing what to expect when going into a new class, so I am really eager to start giving advice to other students to help them get more out of their educational experience. Not only do I want to be a helpful resource for current CNR students, but I would also like to help enrich and expand the college's diversity by promoting awareness about how unique and special CNR's opportunities are. To do this, I would like to recruit new students to CNR and also inform current students about their amazing resources. I really enjoy being around others and am a naturally helpful and friendly person, which is why I feel that the PAL program is perfect for me.

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Posted by Jennifer Powers at 0:09 | Permalink

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