Thursday, April 10, 2014

The infamous Isla Vista

What started out as a party turned into a riot in Isla Vista Saturday.

I'm both shocked and embarrassed that this event happened in the Santa Barbara community. The riot has been covered everywhere, from the  Santa Barbara Independent to CNN, and everyone is talking about it. 

I had to tell my family that I wasn't there and that I was okay, but it embarrasses me that something so juvenile and violent had to happen here.

A lot of college students visit Isla Vista with the idea of a party mecca, where kegs are at every house and DJs play music off ocean backdrops. Sure, I.V. is a party place, but the students who live there are respectful of each other and don't try to start fights with law enforcement, which sparked the riot.

I think it's sad that I.V's reputation has stained that of UCSB and SBCC. Ragers aren't the only people who attend these schools; the community of students in Santa Barbara is full of talented and hard-working people.

Isla Vista is a community of students who care about their home. There is an adorable downtown with local restaurants and even a Food Co-op.

I don't want any prospective students to be scared of coming to SBCC for I.V's part scene. Sure, it's fun and has the college experience, but SBCC is only a party if that's what you want. I know people who will change the world that started at this community college.

This is your college experience; be safe and make your decisions based off your personal judgements and you'll have a blast.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Expectations and Experiences

Before starting something new, whether it be a job or school, you hold expectations. Questions arise and can cause anxiety making you second guess your decision to embark on a new journey. 

The last couple months before I moved to Santa Barbara, a lot of thoughts ran through my head:
    • What will my professors be like?
    • Will I like my classes?
    •  How is the student body, will I make any friends?
    • What if I don't like the campus or the area?
I'm sure every prospective college student has similar worries, and it' s perfectly normal to have them. I've found that my experience at S.B.C.C has had both its ups and downs. 

When I first moved here I didn't have many friends, but that quickly changed when my roommates and I started bonding and when I met people in my classes. That's another thing-one of the best ways to meet people here is to talk to them in class. You can also meet people through clubs and a job, Santa Barbara is a total college town so meeting people your age is not hard at all. 

I've had both bad and good professors. The good ones were funny and made me love subjects that I thought I hated (I'm looking at you, math). The bad ones made me uninterested in the class and I just had to sit through the class. You'll find a range of professors from bad to good on any campus, but a strong majority of my friends agree that we've really liked our professors so far. A lot of them have experience in their field, my film studies teacher worked in screenwriting and my journalism professor used to work for a newspaper. 

In high school I found myself in the counselor's office seeking advice a lot. At S.B.C.C, there is a way, way, way larger student population so finding that one on one help is harder. I've had counselors that have told me I needed a major to prepare for transfer (this is true, but I wasn't about to pick a major my first week of college!) and I've had others who have helped me plan my schedule so that I can explore majors yet still fulfill requirements for I.G.E.T.C. It all depends on who you talk to, but I have had to do research on my own and counsel myself a few times.

I was also worried about the party reputation at U.C.S.B., but S.B.C.C. is only a party school if you want that. That's the biggest surprise I've experienced in Santa Barbara; there is so much culture here that if you don't want to party, you don't have to to make friends or have fun. 

I wasn't sure I'd fit in with Santa Barbara, but moving here has really changed my mind. I love this city, school, and all the people I've met here have only heightened the experience. I knew it would be beautiful, though, and the pictures don't give it justice, come visit and see for yourself!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Misterms, quizzes, and projects! Oh my!

Hey everyone, I just wanted to apologize for the lack of posts this week. My schedule is jam-packed with midterms, quizzes, and projects!

Next week is spring break and I am so excited to have some time off to work on my projects (a.k.a not doing them the night before) and final papers. I'm staying in the Santa Barbara area and will blog about anything exciting happening!

College midterms are crazy, but they're not as bad as finals. Here are some studying tips I've learned this past week:

  • Study with friends! If other people are doing it, you'll feel more inclined to do the same, even if they aren't studying the same subject. Sometimes that's better, because then you'll have less opportunity to talk and get distracted. 
  • Find a study spot. I like to go to the Luria Library, but when I need coffee and environment, I head to my favorite shops downtown. A few gems are Hot Spots, Santa Barbara Roasting Company, and Good Cup.
  • Visit tutors. I probably wouldn't have passed Italian 101 last semester if it weren't for my tutor. They are extremely helpful and most of them are around your age, so they're not intimidating!
  • Have fun!! I find I study best when I make my homework a challenge. When I am trying to remember something, I recite it to my roommates. 
There are countless ways to study, just find your niche and you'll feel a thousand times more confident while taking tests.

Friday, March 14, 2014

College credit for dancing?!?

One of my favorite classes at CC is my dance class. My friend took Beginning Social Ballroom last semester and really enjoyed it (and I needed at least one more credit!), so I enrolled in PE 156.

I haven't taken a physical education course since eighth grade, so I was very nervous. But the teacher, Kay Fulton, makes class fun and all her students feel comfortable. It can be kind of awkward having to dance with another person (we learn dances like the foxtrot, waltz, cha-cha, etc.) but everyone in the class just wants to learn and have fun!

I got this photo from Google, but this is only half of the P.E. department, my dance class is on a lower level. 

I recommend taking a P.E. class in college because it's a great way to meet all sorts of interesting people (it's not a specific major course) from all ages and backgrounds, you get college credit for dancing (which is tons of fun by itself!), and it is an hour out of the day where other academic stresses don't matter-you can have fun and BE ACTIVE!

Monday, March 10, 2014

An Update

Hey everyone! I realize that I have not been blogging as much recently, but I am going to start blogging consistently now for the rest of the semester.

I have been through a lot this past month; school has been crazy, I took a trip home, and I am in the middle of switching jobs. My life is kind of stressful right now but I need to take the time to blog! So, I will be publishing a post twice a week, one on Monday and one on Wednesday.

Hopefully by having a set day it will keep me on track :)

--

On Thursday I hopped on a plane and surprised my mom with a visit! It was so nice seeing her, my family, and my friends. I was feeling very homesick and the opportunity came, so I thought it would be nice to go home.


My mom said she knew I was coming, but I know I still shocked her, even if she won't admit it :) 

Visiting home gave me the time and space to relax and think about what I want. I was feeling very stressed in February and now I finally feel like I have a clear head! If you ever get the chance to surprise your parents with a visit, do it!


Saturday, February 8, 2014

Going Home: Expectations versus Reality

Ah, returning home after the first semester at college. A traditional college kid experience. I know things would be different, but what I didn't know was how different I've become.
Snow! You can't find that in Santa Barbara.

Expectation: "I've missed the snow and can't wait to bundle up in blankets and drink hot cocoa in my favorite coffee shop!"
Reality: You forgot that you own virtually no winter clothes since moving to sunny California and the heater never seems to work when you really need it. Also, it's too icy to drive anywhere (doesn't matter anyways, you have to be on your mom's schedule because you have to share the car).

Expectation: "With all this free time, I'll finally get around to applying for scholarships and start that book I've been wanting to read!"
Reality: You'll spend entirely way too much time watching seasons 1-3 of Bob's Burgers and you'll suddenly start pondering which direction you're taking in life (see: existential crisis).

Expectation: "Things are going to pick up right where they left off, I know who my true friends are!"
Reality: Things have changed, for you and everyone else (I did find, however, that I identified closer with the people who moved or went to college). There is, however, a set of people who will support you whether you're down the street or 1,000 miles away. Those people are important.

I may sound cynical, but the most important lesson I got out of returning home was that it is okay to change. I am not the same person I was six months ago, and while I will always love seeing my family and friends, my real home is wherever I am. And that is okay.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Welcome to Spring!

Hey guys, I have been meaning to make this post for a while now but my life's been crazy with school, meetings, homework, and other boring stuff you probably don't care about.

It feels so good to be back on campus and in the City of Santa Barbara! For those of you who are new here, my name is Savanna (hence the URL) and I am now in my second (feels good to say that!) semester at SBCC. My major is undecided but I am focusing on transferring.

Anyways, I just wanted to make a welcome post and say hello to any new readers and let everyone know that I am super excited about this semester and what it all has to offer!!

Make spring semester a good one! :)