#Stangrad, Dean’s Medal of Excellence, and ASI Diversity Awareness Award!

Sometimes it’s nice to be recognized.

Last week was jam-packed for me, full of awards and ceremonies. It started with my #Stangrad profile being posted in all its glory and splendor. I was extremely honored to be profiled as one of the graduating seniors this year.

Here’s my flattering picture that went along with my profile. Click the pic to check it out yourself!

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Also, last Monday I received the Dean’s Medal of Excellence for my major. Every year, the top student for each major is chosen to receive this honor. Frankly, I was so surprised that I was nominated, let alone that I was the one the department chose to receive the medal. It definitely was one of the best highlights of my undergraduate career.

And finally I was awarded the ASI Diversity Awareness Award at the Student Leadership & Development Awards Ceremony. I was up for two awards, and took one home with me. I’m glad all my work was recognized this year.11260522_10202937622041224_8694565742524368029_n

 

Definitely a memorable year for me! Thanks everyone for everything!

Home stretch!

Well, it’s almost that time. End of the semester. Finals. Graduation…

It didn’t really hit me until recently that I was graduating, that after years of hard work I will finally be finishing my degree. I had my last fraternity meeting as an undergraduate last Sunday, and there was a slideshow of my years as a member. It was touching and a little sad, but mostly it made me relieved to finally be done (being in a fraternity is hard work!) and grateful to have been apart of such a great organization.

Looking back, I don’t regret anything I did or was apart of at CSU Stanislaus. If anything, I’m glad that I’ll be here for a few more years getting my masters and continuing to work on some things for the university. And even though I’m not officially leaving, I know that it won’t be the same in grad school (I’ll be way busier!).

I’m not completely finished yet though, I still have a few papers to conjure up, and an exam or two to ace. I also have two award ceremonies to attend next week, so I think that more than anything will really put into perspective all my time here as well.

Good luck on finals and all that jazz!

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Grad school decision…

So, I’ve done it. 

I’ve made a grad school decision!

I am happy to announce I have accepted my admissions to the Master of Social Work program here at CSU Stanislaus! Here’s basically what I posted on Facebook that kind of sums up everything that went into my grad school decision:

“I am pleased to announce that I have officially accepted my admissions to the Master of Social Work program at CSU Stanislaus.

I’ve thought long and hard about what I want to do with my life. And even though I’m not entirely sure where I’ll end up or what exactly I’ll be doing in the long-run, I know I want to work on making my community (and on a grander scale, society) a better place for all people.

When it came down to it, I wanted a masters degree that is impactful. I wanted something that guarantees that I’ll be trained in helping individuals, families, couples, and communities to be strong, supported, and cared for. I wanted to know that while I’m here (wherever here may be at that time in my life), that I’m making a difference.

I have a strong desire to help my fellow LGBTQ+ community, and it’s always bothered me that so many LGBTQ+ leaders and allies shy away from the valley and take their passion and knowledge elsewhere (Bay Area, L.A., etc.). What we need is MORE LGBTQ+ leaders in the valley, not less. And with my admission acceptance, I’ll be a champion for those needing one. It’s always been my passion and there’s plenty of work to be done in the Central Valley and even at CSU Stanislaus. It’s not going to be easy work by any means, but the most needed work seldom is.

CSU Stanislaus, I just can’t let you go.

Here’s to life-long happiness and fulfilling your dreams.”

I’m excited to start my three-year journey this fall! I can’t wait to see what the program has in store for me!

Student Leadership Awards!

I got a great little invitation yesterday!

It all started with a phone call…

Now, I’m always weary of answering numbers I don’t know, I’m not sure why I’m just a paranoid person, but luckily it was for something worthwhile! I have received notice that I have officially been nominated for a Student Leadership Award. These are awards given out every year to students or organizations who have gone above and beyond to better the campus, community, or their organization.

The award ceremony is on May 15th and there are a variety of awards to be handed out that day (from outstanding student of the year to a diversity award, and many others). I can bring up to three guests and food will be provided (score!). I know it’s just a nomination and there’s no guarantee I’ve won anything but I’m still excited and grateful nonetheless.

Here’s hoping for the best!

UW – Bothell, Spring Break, and my birthday!

Well, it’s been a busy week and will only continue to be busy during this Spring Break!

First off, I’m back from my trip to Seattle (and Washington in general since I traveled around a little). It was really nice visiting the campuses (especially the main one I’d be at because UW – Seattle is a little too much for me to handle. Don’t get me wrong, it’s absolutely stunning and beautiful, but it’s HUGE, and just not what I need right now).

Fortunately though, if I attend grad school in Washington I’ll be at a satellite campus, UW – Bothell, nestled in a cute town (named…Bothell) about 20 minutes outside of Seattle. To me, this campus was way more manageable, and it reminded me a little more of home. While I haven’t fully made up my mind yet, it’s nice to have options. I’m keeping my head up and mind open.

Secondly, and these kind of go hand-in-hand, it’s Spring Break & my birthday all rolled up in one. The only big Spring Break trip I have planned is spending the day at Discovery Kingdom for my birthday. Other than that, my break will consist of Netflix and video games (so not really too different from an average week…)

I know I have some big decisions coming soon (grad school…) but for now I’m just going to enjoy the break, relax, and have some fun as well.

Booking a flight to Washington!

So, I’m pretty much a noob when it comes to flying. I think I’ve only been on a plane a total of two times my whole life, and it’s about to be three next week. Since I’ve been officially accepted to the University of Washington, I’ll be attending Admitted Students Day next Friday (April 3rd). This is a great opportunity to meet other admitted students, meet the professors, and just get a general feel for the program. In no way is this confirming my acceptance to the University of Washington, but I do hope it helps me make a decision on what I want to do for the next few years of my life.

It’s all kind of scary and exciting to be travelling alone, but I know it will also be what is needed. It’s nice (and sometimes really needed!) to go explore somewhere new, completely on your own. And I do have to say that I’m beyond ecstatic to explore Seattle a little!

And if all goes according to plan, then hopefully I’ll be interviewing for a graduate assistant position as well!

Where is the last place you visited completely alone? And if you’ve been to Seattle, what are some must-see places?

First acceptance

It’s been over a week, but I feel like now is a good time to post about this. If you’ve kept up with my blogs at all, you know that I’m in my last semester as an undergraduate. I finish in just a few short months, and I’ve applied to a total of four graduate programs in three different states.

The weird thing about the programs I applied to was that they were all slightly different. I’ve applied to one cultural studies program, one social work program, and two gender studies programs. Even though they all seem about as random as it can get, I’ve made sure the specific programs I was applying to would fulfill my passions and would help me reach the academic and career goals I’ve set for myself.

I was a little bummed early on, because the first school I applied to (and the one that happened to be my first choice) denied me. The thing about grad school applications, at least in my experience, is they can be pretty tough. So many people apply and it’s pretty competitive no matter where you go, so I had to keep that in mind that sometimes it just doesn’t work out. Even though that particular school and program was my first choice, it wasn’t my only choice so I kept my head high.

It was an agonizing few weeks, and I kept checking my email and application accounts often, but I finally received an email from one of the schools. I was so nervous I almost didn’t want to open it. I read it. And read it again. And I was accepted.

As it stands, I’ve been accepted into the University of Washington for the MA in Cultural Studies. I’ve been denied to two schools, and I’m waiting on one more. I’m hoping to get into the one I’m waiting on as well, and then I’ll have an even bigger decision to make. I know that a decision like this is not to be taken lightly, and I really feel either program (assuming I get into the other one) will only help me succeed. Not only do I have to take the programs into account, but also moving, financial aid, tuition costs, etc.

It’ll be an interesting few weeks as I wait to hear from my last school and then make a huge decision.

Diversity & Inclusiveness

People who know me really well know that I’m a go-getter. I’m highly motivated and I like to change things for the better wherever I go. And with graduation right around the corner, I’ve been doing some deep self-reflecting and trying to find where I think some of the biggest campus issues lie. I want to make my university a better place as I leave it then when I first attended. Early on in my college career I joined a fraternity and I’ve been extensively active in other clubs and organizations on campus. This involvement has given me specific insight into the life of an active student; of a student who tries really hard to be active and involved.

But not everyone is like this. In fact, I would even say that most students aren’t like this. People tend not to go out of their way if they feel uncomfortable or unwanted. Often times these feelings stem from a place of misunderstanding and not a place of intentional hurt. So I’ve taken it upon myself to help make clubs and organizations a more safe, diverse, understanding, and inclusive place for all. Working closely with the Greek Advisor on campus, we’ve come up with a Diversity and Inclusiveness workshop!

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I’m really excited for this, and while planning has been stressful, I know it will be rewarding!

Music

Usually my posts are a little more substantial and campus-focused, but today I wanted to write about something that is simultaneously very personal but entirely universal: music.

Tastes in music vary from person to person, and if you meet a stranger that has the same tastes as you it can help you both form a quick bond. And even more so, I have a few friends that a majority of our relationship is built on music. I’m one of those people that have a very large variety of music that I listen to (and I know so many people say this but I swear it’s true!).

One of my absolutely favorite artists (Florence and the Machine) is releasing her third album later this year, and it got me thinking about what music is and why it effects us in such profound ways. Why are some sounds more pleasing than others? A majority of the artist I listen to happen to be women, and I’ve really wondered why.

All in all, I think it’s going to be a great year in music. I know Adele plans on releasing her third album sometime soon and rumors have it that Regina Spektor is working on an album as well. Needless to say, I’m ecstatic.

Who are some of your favorite artists? Are you excited for any albums being released this year?

Student Health Center!

After much coaxing and convincing, I finally persuaded one of my roommates to visit the health center. All in all, he paid $5 for the visit and some medication (the visit is free!). Now, most places would cost much more and the wait would be horrendous, but knowing that as a student you have a place to receive quality healthcare that is quick, easy and affordable is comforting.

I truly believe the Student Health Center is one of the most under-used and under-appreciated student perks at CSU Stanislaus.

Nestled quietly behind the bookstore, this remarkable facility can aid you from many common illnesses or issues you may be suffering, from mild cold relief, shots you may need (like the flu shot which is free for students while supplies last), or even minor surgeries (or so I’ve been told).

Usually I get pretty bad allergies for a few weeks in March/April, and I always head over to the Student Health Center. It’s a great idea to make an appointment in advance if you can, and usually you can get in within a few days (or a lot less!). The medication I’ve received has always been way cheaper than anywhere else.

So next time you’re feeling a little under the weather and you need to see a doctor, try the health center.