Campus Conversations

Student Voices

Considering Oxy? Check out what our students have to say...

October 20, 2014

Blogger: Keane Tarrosa

Hey everyone, my name is Keane.  This is my first time blogging for the Office of Admission, so I’ll start off with some basics. I’m a senior economics major here at Oxy, minoring in education and sociology. On campus, I’m a member of Oxy’s Impact Fund (a microfinance club) and the Vice President of Phi Kappa Psi (one of Oxy’s eight greek organizations). I’m from Huntington Beach, CA and still have no idea what exactly I’m going to be doing next year despite seemingly being asked every time I talk to someone. I couldn’t be happier with the time I’ve spent at Occidental and am excited that you all are considering Oxy in your college application process. 
I was going to write this blog looking back...
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October 15, 2014

Blogger: Kyle Beasley

Hello Readers!

It has been a while since I have blogged for Oxy, so allow me to reintroduce myself. I’m Kyle and I am a senior, urban and environmental policy major. I am just returning to campus after spending the Spring 2014 semester in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This year at Oxy I am actively involved with the Black Student Alliance and I am also a Senior Fellow with the Office of Admission. 

As I mentioned, I am just returning after being abroad for 6 months. It is weird to know that, already, I am well into the first semester of my last year here at Oxy. While it sounds so cliche to say, it seems like just last week I was starting my first year, nervous about starting classes and getting involved. Now, as a “seasoned veteran”, its cool to be in a...

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October 14, 2014

Blogger: Amber Thai 

Hey all!

I hope that the semester has started off well (: It’s already October and I’m in the middle of doing my senior comps and can’t even start thinking about how I’m going to be graduating next Spring semester because everything seems so far off into the future. Time is passing by slowly which is good because I want to have as much time as possible to hang out with my friends. I don’t know if it’s because it’s Senior year but I’ve also had much more energy to do homework and work now more than ever. Maybe it’s due to the past three years that have trained me to stay up late haha.

As far as what I’ve been up to for this semester, I applied for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award to Vietnam, which would allow me to spend a whole year in Vietnam to teach English to...

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October 13, 2014

Blogger: Columbia Shafer 

On tours I often have been asked, “What is the defining quality of an Oxy student?” After three years of close observation of Occidental students in their natural habitat I have come the the conclusion that we are a busy bunch. No matter what a student's interests are they probably involved in half a dozen different organizations, taking challenging classes, working, and making time to go out and explore LA. I'm certainly no exception to the busy Oxy lifestyle, and this past week has been proof.

The week started at 6am on Sunday when I got up to watch the sunrise on me and my roommate's birthday (a tradition I've blogged about before, pictured below)....

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October 10, 2014

Blogger: Rebeca Lopez

I took me a while to finally admit this to myself, but I am an indecisive person. If you can relate to this then you can imagine the difficulty I encountered when I had to chose my major. I considered at least 6 different majors before I finally decided I was going to study Urban and Environmental Policy. I took classes across several departments and realized that even though I enjoyed Sociology, Politics, Economics, Critical Thinking and Social Justice, and Kinesiology, I did not want to major in just one of those. 
My sophomore year I took the intro class for Urban and Environmental Policy and realized that it combined everything I enjoyed and even more; I felt like the decision had basically been made for me. I am now in my Junior year and still very confident that I chose the right...
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October 7, 2014

Blogger: Janel Booker

The past 3 years at Oxy, I have stayed pretty much consistent as far as extracurricular involvement is concerned: Dance Production and Cheer.  Then, senior year rolls around and I find myself trying to juggle my newly acquired job in admissions with my position as captain of the cheerleading squad and prepping my resume and cover letter for the job I hope to acquire before I graduate in May. ..along with my classes. Surprisingly, even though I feel as if I am doing less then in years past, I have much less free time. 


I’m constantly stressed or on the verge of tears because of the fear of failing. Often I’m very sleep deprived...

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October 6, 2014

Blogger: Connie Ohh

The last time I wrote a blog post I was but a wee freshman, trying to figure out my way through Oxy. Today, however, I am a sophomore – and a history major. Yes, I declared my major!

Many people ask me why I chose to become a history major. The history major provides me with many different options – so many different geographical areas and time periods to study about! So many different topic areas! I really enjoy having that freedom and diversity to study whatever time period or subject matter I’m interested in. My particular interests lie with modern U.S. history and East Asian history – with a strong focus on the intersection between those two areas, Asian...

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October 3, 2014

Blogger: Julius DiLorenzo

When I was 17—a junior in high school— I found solace in volunteering on the Illinois Senate campaign. I was at that point in life where I was too angsty to be hanging at home but not quite old enough to have anywhere else to go…and then I discovered political campaigns. Converted offices filled with excited and passionate young (and not so young) people engaged in the world. Nobody cared that I was in high school or that I had homework to do or that I still didn’t have a driver’s license. Everyone would work and laugh and tell stories and eat and stay at the office until sometimes 9pm—even on school nights! And then I met Dimitri.

Dimitri was a college junior from Occidental working on the campaign through a program at his...

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October 1, 2014

Blogger: Somer Greene

“What’s your major?” When I was a first year, I was afraid of this question. When I became a sophomore, I was confused by this question. By the time I reached my junior year, however, I finally answered this question with the tongue-tied response of: “Hi, my name is Somer Greene and I am a Community Development and Media Communications major.”

At Oxy, students are encouraged on a daily basis to explore their passions, ask questions, and be bold in their pursuit of academic and social knowledge, and through the Independent Pattern of Study Program (IPS) I was given the opportunity to do just that. I decided to create my own major after completing an internship the summer of freshman year. My dream job is to work for a nonprofit organization...

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September 29, 2014

Blogger: Donovan Dennis

It’s no secret to many around me that I come from Montana. Though I don’t live up to the entire bolo-tie-wearing, 10-gallon-hat-and-spurs stereotype, many times my friends remark on my behavior with something along the line of “Your Montana is showing.” Most of the time, I’m proud of my heritage. I’m a seventh-generation Montanan, and the first student in my family to grow up in Montana and attend college outside the state. My “Montana shows” often, like when I choose to say hello to people as they walk down the street—or nod to passersby driving on the road. There aren’t very many of us at Oxy, but I hope more students from rural states recognize the value in not only attending a school in...

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