Monday, December 7, 2015

Is a Master's Degree the New Bachelor's?

I remember when I was in my early teens and my dad was lecturing me about college and how there is no other option for me other then college. He would always tell me how much he would have loved to attend to college, but he was forced to work at the age of 8. He said he even would have been content with just passing high school but that was asking too much since his family struggled financially. He would tell me that people were able to get a decent job with just your high school diploma. Nowadays a high school diploma can barely land you a job at MacDonald's. 

As a graduating senior, I am a little concerned about landing a job when I graduate. We aren’t guaranteed a job after graduation and we have to face that fact. Teachers in high school told us how important it is to get your bachelor's degree, that we wouldn’t get a good paying job without one. As a college student you start to hear that a bachelor's isn’t good enough. Maybe in some job areas a bachelor’s degree is good enough, but in other job areas a bachelors just doesn’t cut it. We need to shoot for a higher education to be able to get that better paying job. 

So, all those hard working and endless hours in the library was all for nothing? Are we just putting ourselves into debt because some students are fortunate to receive financial aid and there are students who have to pull out loans their four or five years in college. To be told that a job isn’t guaranteed is a little worrisome. So we have to start thinking about our master's degree. For some people they were already shooting for that or even beyond that like their doctorate, but some people just can’t afford it so they just settle with their bachelor's. Next thing you know, our master's won’t even cut it and a will be considered the new bachelor's. At the end of the day, we should all strive to better ourselves. Not just as a student but a person in general. 

Count Down to Finals!

I cannot believe it is already the end of the semester. Granted, we have a few weeks left but it is getting down to the final push of Fall 2015. I have been doing most of my blogs about stress and how to cope with obstacles that pop up throughout the semester. This is a weird time of the year where we are stressed about how much we have been stressed throughout the year and we “cannot” let it go waste. The truth is, all the stress and hard work always pays off. No matter how you end this semester, everything will be okay.

That is a pretty bold statement and believe me, I hate it when someone tells me that everything will be fine and I just need to “chill out”. The reason you are stressed and staying up late and consuming so much caffeine is because you are passionate about your schooling and progress. You are getting an education for YOU, no one else. However you are feeling, do not stop pushing. Sometimes it seems impossible to stay up that extra hour and really perfect that last paper, but you can do it. An hour is only 4% of your day. With that, remember, an hour is only 4% of your day. So, take a nap if you need it, go to lunch with a friend, or call your mom. Even though we are stressed and worried, it is no excuse to let ourselves slip. You cannot give everything you have to school, you must take care of yourself and remember to love yourself. After all, you are the one that got you here in the first place!

I have done some research and found a few easy, cheap things to do for an hour in Chico! This is only one hour of your day but it could make all of the difference. I am a sucker for the WREC, I love going with a friend and walking on the treadmill and chatting a little bit. There is also Honey Run Covered Bridge, if you haven’t gone, you should. It is beautiful and a really unique part of Chico. It is a little bit of a drive, but sometimes taking a drive is relaxing and can take your mind off of any extra stuff that you may be worried about. The Saturday Farmers Markets are always fun. You don’t need to buy anything or spend a lot of time there to have fun and meet come of the free spirited people of Chico. Hey they have free samples too!
Keep some fun ideas in the back of your mind just in case you find yourself ready for a brain break within the next few weeks.

All in all, everything WILL be okay in the end. You have made it this far! With that, thank you for reading my blogs for those of you who have taken the time to do so. This is the last blog I will write for Liberal Studies and I just wanted to thank you for everything. If you have come in to meet with me throughout the last few years I enjoyed talking to you! Have a great end to the semester and wonderful holidays spent with loved ones! 

Friday, December 4, 2015

Greek Life and Other Student Organizations

Coming into a new environment like college is something to get use to. For some it’s easy to adjust to the new setting and for others it’s more challenging. There are people who aren’t use to talking to others and having to make new friends. College is intimidating at first because you don’t know anyone. You don’t know who to talk to and are scared to search for help. There are many programs that can help you feel welcomed and make you feel at home. As students we have to take advantage of all the programs on campus. It can be from sports, clubs on campus, or Greek life.
Greek life is something I never saw myself doing but it’s something I would highly recommend for an upcoming student at any university. Fraternities and sororities are looked at in a negative way, but in reality it gives people a sense of community. It’s people who almost have similar beliefs and strive to better themselves as individuals. There are many Greek organizations on campus. When I came to Chico I knew a lot of people, but I wanted to meet new people. There were times where I felt home sick and missed my family. When I went to a social gathering for my fraternity, before I joined, they all had the same interests as me. When I was around them it felt like I was at home. This is what I mean by feeling welcomed and the feeling like you’re back home. You are surrounded with people who have the same interests and mind set as you. I’m not saying that Greek life is for everyone but it is something people should look into. A lot of Greek organizations are very academic based. This means that you have to maintain a certain GPA to be active and participate with the organization. When I say participate that means community service, study hours, and socials with other organizations.

This type of program is to help build students academically, socially, and better round you as a person. They also make you feel at home and comfortable and make you break out of your comfort zone. When I joined my fraternity I became a more outspoken person in presentations. I also got to meet a lot of important people on and off campus, all qualities that will benefit me in my future.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

First Generation Students

As a first generation student there’s a lot of a pressure. We have to succeed and be the example to those younger than you, such as your little brothers or sisters. We go to college not only for our parents and family but also for ourselves. We go to college to better ourselves and to be able to pass that on to the next person who comes along. There will be times when we are overwhelmed and tired of school, but we can't just quit we have to push and remember why we are here. First time generation students have a little more pressure because we are looked upon to succeed. Failure is never an option for us because our parents worked extra hard to get us where we are at currently. It doesn’t have to be first time generation students either who have this type of pressure. Siblings who are second-generation college students can have big expectations as well. They could have an older brother or sister who went to college and did very well and are expected to do the same or even better. The reasons why are because they are exposed to more opportunities. By this time they should have observed and learned from those who went before them.

We have to set the example and prove that we can do well in school and graduate from a four-year institution. We have to break that fear and demonstrate anything can be achieved if we put our minds to it. When we succeed, others see our accomplishments and we become that motivation to others. It’s hard for us at times because we had no idea who to talk to our where to go to for help. We become that new resource and we have to reach out to those students, those students who resemble us. 

Monday, November 30, 2015

Staying Healthy on Finals Week

We all know that on finals week our main priority is studying and doing well on finals.  Eating healthy tends to fall apart during this week but it is very important that we maintain healthy eating habits to retain information better and do well on our exams.  Eating brain power food will help us stay healthy and alert to do our best possible and excel in our final exams.  I know that it is hard to think of ideas of foods that can be simple to make and also taste delicious.  For this reason I have compiled a list of websites that can help you with this process.  Hopefully these websites are useful for you. I have also included a list of tips that may help you get organized while studying for finals.  Good luck on finals everyone!

The Gracious Pantry: This website has many different recipes that anyone can easily recreate.  It is also very easy to find recipes because they are separated into categories.  Just click on recipe index at the top of the page and choose the category you desire!
One Green Planet : This website is very diverse it also has many recipes separated by meals and also special occasions.  One green planet is an online guide to help make conscious choices that help people, animals, and the planet.
Health: This website is health related with various recipes and tips that help on everyday life.  One of the things that I liked about this website is that under heath A- Z at the top of the page, it has different health issues that you could click on to learn more about. 

Study tips for finals
  • Create a master to-do list and a schedule for the remaining days in the semester.
  • Just get started. Don’t wait until you feel like studying.
  • Identify the format of the exam. Vary your study technique according to the type of exam.
  • Take short breaks. Your brain can process a limited amount of information and benefits from some rest.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Making Stress Your Friend: Part 2 - by Krista

Hello again!

Last week we discussed stress; what it is, how to cope with it, and included a Ted Talk on the subject. This week, I want to talk about the resources that can assist you in dealing with stress and stressful situations throughout your college career here at Chico State.

There are many resources on campus that students can access for FREE! The concept of “free” to me is incredible and includes opportunities that you should not pass up. After all, someday we will have to pay a good amount of money for these amazing services and they wont be nearly as accessible as on the campus of your current lifestyle. The Counseling Center is open Monday thru Friday 8:00am-5:00pm with crisis services available all day throughout their regular operating hours. 

You can view more information on the Counseling Center website. The Student Health Center can always help as well. Stress can be just something extra on your plate, but if you are sick and stressed out, you are less likely to take the time to care for yourself. If you are anything like me, you will push yourself until you need to see the doctor because you didn’t rest when you should have taken the time to care for your body. If this sounds like you, I want to recommend the Student Health Center. Every time I absolutely need something, they are able to fit me in. If you form a relationship with a full time staff member, you can be seen quickly, which (hopefully) won’t disrupt a busy schedule. The Student Health Center is open Monday thru Friday 8:00am-5:00pm, however, they open at 9:15am on Wednesdays. For more information, visit the Student Health Center website.

Of course, there are many other resources on campus as well such as the library and academic advising walk in hours. However, I want you to consider your family and friends as a solid foundation for support in the time of stress and possible anxiety. Having a well-rounded social life will help support a successful education and keep you on track. We want to avoid burnout as much as possible as students! Keep yourself and your schedule open for a little “you” time and don’t forget to include those important people in your life. Carving out time for social activities, or just to talk about your situation will be more helpful than you anticipate.

Thanks again for reading! Next time I would like to talk to you all about methods of stress relief, such as sporting events, hobbies, and activities that can help you during those tough midterm weeks! 

Friday, October 30, 2015

Happy Halloween! - by Krista

Hello again!

Lately I have been focusing on stress management in my blogs. But this week, I am in the Halloween spirit and would like to share some beneficial information for everyone reading!

In Chico, this holiday is broadly recognized as a party weekend. People form out of town make the commute to experience what is known as “Chicoween”. With this being the case, there is a lot of room for error and danger. I have experienced and heard from permanent Chico residents that are from out of town are the scariest part of the weekend because they do not respect the town. People that come from out of town are also unfamiliar with the surroundings, such as, one-way roads, or the consistency of the train passing by.

With this in mind, it is important to remember a few things this weekend. Always be aware of your own personal surroundings. If you are driving, remain alert and avoid distractions. If you are walking down the street late at night, be aware of what is happening around you. There are many instances where dangerous situations involve people that are local to Chico.

Along with looking out for yourself, don’t let someone else put him or herself in a dangerous situation. Do all that you can do avoid the bystander effect. This is the social physiological phenomenon that one will not stand up or act out when bystanders are present. Do not be that person! If a situation makes you uncomfortable, it makes at least three other people in the area uncomfortable as well. Trust your instincts. There will never be a time where you will regret being too conscious in a life-threatening situation.

If you have any doubt concerning alcohol poisoning, a shady scenario, or anything of that nature, you can always reach out. Law enforcement and emergency services staff a great quantity of workers during this weekend for a reason. If you are concerned about someone/your own state of self, call 911. If the ambulance comes, and the victim does not need medical attention, then there is no charge for the arrival of the paramedics. They can provide a primary assessment and analyze whether or not further help is needed. Along with that, if you are drinking as a minor or under the influence, you will not get into trouble for calling for help under the Good Samaritan Laws. Keep in mind to always cooperate with authority and be an outstanding citizen as well.

As students and members of the community, it is our responsibility to keep this town safe. Be respectful and aware of everything around you. The more alert and informed you are about an event, the better.

Have a safe and fun weekend! Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Dreaded "Freshman 15" - by Lidia

The first thing people tell us when we are about to start college is, “beware of the freshman 15”.  We all know that our schedules are very demanding and it gets difficult to maintain healthy eating habits as well as exercise throughout the day.  With our busy schedules it is easy for us to grab any snack and in some cases these snacks may not be the healthiest.  In my experience, when I finally arrive home it’s time to unleash my hunger and I eat whatever is fastest and easiest to cook.   Throughout the years I have established a good routine that helps me keep my hunger on the low until I have time to eat a real meal.  Here I have provided some tips to help you as well.

1.   Don’t skip breakfast!  Although I am guilty of this sometimes, I know I have a better day when I have a good breakfast meal.  It may be difficult to find an appetite in the morning but a fruit smoothie is a good option and is also easy for on the go.

2.   Stock up on healthy snacks. Fresh fruit, granola bars, trail mix, etc. are all healthy snacks and are super easy to pack.  This will minimize your hunger and prevent binge eating when you arrive home.  Here’s a link to healthy snack ideas.

3.    Stay in shape with a friend.  Working out is always more fun with a friend and also give you more motivation.

4.     Get the best night sleep that you can.  Sometimes it is challenging to get a good night’s sleep because of school work but it is important that you do so.  This can prevent you from taking surgery drinks to stay away and will prevent you from drinking extra calories.

5.   Everything in moderation! There is no need for deprivation. It’s better to have a little of everything to feed your cravings.


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Lidia's List of Fun Things to Do

Do you ever get bored over the weekend or during the long summer break here in Chico?   If you do, this will be perfect for you.  I have compiled a list of possible things to do if you ever have free time.  Most of these activities cost little to no money, so it will not hurt your wallet.  This can be a fun adventure with your friends or a time for you to spend alone and relax.

1.      Visit Bidwell Park
-  If you like swimming, you should visit sycamore pool located at the one mile recreation area.
- You can also visit the Chico Community Observatory.  This observatory has many telescopes and offers constellation tours.
-  DiscGolf: There is an 18 – hole advanced disc golf course located on Upper Bidwell Park
-  Hiking/Mountain biking: Yahi Trail (pedestrian only) in Upper Park is a recommended because it has miles of scenic views along Big Chico Creek.

2.      Gateway Science Museum: The museum was built to help educate about northeastern Californian history, nature and science. 

3.      Go explore Lake Shasta Caverns.
- Learn about the history and formation of the caves and spot various animals along the way.

4.      Get a tour at Sierra Nevada BrewingCompany
- This tour is about 1 ½ hours long and it goes over the process to make the beer. (all ages may tour)
5.      Visit Silver Dollar Speedway.

- The final race of the year is Pacific Sprint 360 Fall Nationals.  Racers from Western United States and Canada come together for this race.  This is a 3 day event with up to 100 total racers.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

What's your preferred teaching style? by Erick

As a Liberal Studies major at Chico State I have been fortunate enough to work one on one with children in elementary schools. I have been able to observe teachers’ teaching styles. The EDTE 255 required me to observe and assist in a classroom. This really opened my eyes to how an elementary teacher really works when under pressure. I never really paid attention to how much work an actual elementary teacher had to do until I was assigned to observe. It’s a lot different when you aren’t the one being lectured tor or yelled at. “Erick stop talking so much,” or “Erick stop getting out of your seat!” I remember my days in third grade. I now can tell how stressful it might have been for my third grade teacher.

One difference I noticed between the teacher I was assigned to watch and another teacher in that school was the level of comfort their students had with them. I observed my 5th grade teacher Ms. Frizzle (name has been changed). She was an amazing teacher and she still is today. I was fortunate enough to observe her and her teaching methods. The other teacher though, that I sat in her class one day just to compare, was a lot different from Ms. Frizzle. I noticed she taught more directly, almost like a robot. She was boring and so blunt. She was a new teacher, to be precise; it was her second year teaching. Ms. Frizzle has been teaching for over 20 years and obviously has more experience with children.

One thing Ms. Frizzle did mention to me is how she notices the differences in the teaching style of the newer teachers. She isn’t saying that their teaching style is bad, but just different from hers. She remembers when she first started off teaching; she made sure she knew almost everything possible about her students. She wanted to make her students feel comfortable around her and be able to trust her. She believes trust plays a big role. A teacher needs to build that trust with her students. With trust a teacher is able to have the student open up and really let the teacher help them solve their problems, whether it’s school related or not.

I am looking for your opinion.  Do you think older generation teachers have a different teaching technique compared to the newer generation of teachers?  What have you observed in your field experience placements?  Comment below or on Facebook.


Monday, September 21, 2015

Making Stress Your Friend by Krista

Hey all! I hope everyone reading has had a great week and are managing well! For this blog, I really want to pay attention to stress. As the semester continues it is so easy to get engulfed in stress that you feel yourself struggling- or almost drowning in some cases. And guess what, I totally get it! I watched this awesome Ted Talk the other evening that has to do with stress and I thought I would share it with all of you! I found it really motivational and it helped me create a new foundation for thinking about stress and how it affects my life. The Ted Talk itself is called “How To MakeStress Your Friend”  ,but here is the link  

I know what you may be thinking though - why would I listen to this? Well, the magic is, when you are sitting there stressed and panicking but somehow end up on my blog, give it a try to kill time and hopefully relax a little bit!

Make sure that you are also taking time for yourself. It is necessary to provide yourself with many options throughout your day/week. I find it helpful to spread out dedications and availability because it allows me to dedicate specific time to “sanity."  Personally, if I don’t set aside this time, there is pretty much a zero chance that I will take the time for leisurely activities on my own. I sometimes find myself panicking and driving myself into the ground, so by taking the time out of my schedule for myself, it allows me that extra flexibility that I don’t even realize I needed!

There are many ways to do this, which I will be touching on throughout the semester! Keep checking in to read about athletic opportunities, current situations in my life, social opportunities, and assistance (both on and off campus). 

Monday, September 14, 2015

How to Save Money While Going to College by Lidia

Is it difficult for you to save money throughout the semester? I know that for me making sure I will have enough money for the whole semester is difficult especially with back to school shopping.  I usually get a little carried away and purchase things I do not need and buying textbooks for classes can also get expensive.  We cannot leave out the eating out with our friends on special occasions.  There are simple little tricks that have worked for me to save money that I would like to share with you.  Cutting out simple things here and there adds up and before you know it, you have saved more money than you thought.

  1. Don’t get carried away with back to school shopping! As hard as it may seem, only buy what you actually need and reuse utensils from other semesters. Some easy things to reuse are backpacks, binders, pencils, and pens
  2.   Borrow books from friends or purchase a used copy of the textbook chances are that someone you know may have a copy of the book you need and are willing to let you borrow it. 
  3. Pack your lunch. If you know that you do not have time to go home and eat, it is very simple to pack your lunch instead of buying something overpriced on campus.
  4. Walk to school, bike, or use public transportation limiting your car use will help you save gas money as well as money used to park your vehicle.
  5. Find out when restaurants have student specials and plan a night out with your friends on that day.
  6. Don’t spend money on unnecessary items.  Cutting out cable may save you some money and give you more time to focus on schoolwork.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Meet the PALS: Fall 2015

Lidia and her dog

Hello, my name is Lidia Leal and I am a peer advisor in the Liberal Studies major and I would like to tell a little about myself.  First of all, I am a local student, which means that I commute to school Monday through Friday.  At times it seems a little tedious but it is also nice to have a home cooked meal almost every day of the week with my family.  I am interested in almost anything that has do with outdoors; something as simple as a walk through the orchard with my dogs or as scary as beekeeping. 

I am a junior and I am pursuing a major in Liberal Studies with a bilingual option.  In the future I would like to teach at a local elementary school between 1st or 2nd grade.  My preference would be 2nd grade because I was really inspired by my 2nd grade teacher. She was really understanding and thoughtful in meeting the needs of all her students.  I think that being a peer advisor has helped me become more understanding and thoughtful in order to meet the students’ needs.  Over the past year it has been a great experience to meet many other students and offer them some of my knowledge to help them do their absolute best here at Chico State.  I am really looking forward to meeting more Liberal Studies students and answer any questions or simply just to have a nice talk.  

Hello everyone my name is Erick Garcia and I am a Liberal Studies major with a bilingual option. I am passionate in what I plan to pursue one day and that is becoming a college counselor. It’s a little different compared to everyone else who wants to become a teacher, but different is good. I am the oldest of three brothers and the first to graduate college in my family. I am a very passionate person and love to help people in any way possible, which is why I joined PALS, to assist students in any way. It doesn’t matter if you need help picking classes, switching majors, or just to talk about your day. I love playing soccer and going to the Wrec. Friends and family are important to me because they‘re our support system and we all need a little support now and then. Well, hopefully I will see many of you who are reading this in Tehama 211.  Remember that we are here to help you.  

Hi there, my name is Krista Freeze. I am a senior here at the university. I am really excited to start blogging and sharing my research and experience with all of you! First, I’d like to tell you a bit about myself. I am a second year peer advisor, and the new TTEC peer advisor. I am in a sorority on campus known as Gamma Phi Beta. I love photography and I also spend a lot of time at the gym. I work in two departments at In Motion Fitness off East 1st Street as a lifeguard and at the daycare. I absolutely love children and working with them. I have been lifeguarding for seven years now along with teaching swim lessons.

I think it is so fun to watch children learn and grow and being a part of that process as a Liberal Studies major makes me very happy. I am also minoring in Special Education and plan to go into the Concurrent Credential program in fall of 2016 here as well.

I am really excited to start blogging! I have never done it before and I look forward to sharing my findings with all of you. My email is if anyone would like to contact me! I have office hours in the Liberal Studies office as well. I have attached a simple picture of my brother and myself so you can get a feel for who I am! Thanks for reading!