Campus Conversations

Student Voices

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

November 14, 2015

Blogger: Camille Baechler

Life has this funny way of flipping things upside down just when you thought you had it all figured out – at least that’s what happened to me when I packed my life up and moved to California all the way from Virginia to start my first semester at Occidental, quite literally on the other side of the country from my other half.

I had always known that I wanted to get off the East coast. And why wouldn’t I? California really is THE place to go if you want to get away, start fresh, and explore the world on your own for the first time. I dreamed of palm trees and In-N-Out, and when my Occidental acceptance letter opened and spewed digital confetti all over my computer monitor all I could think was “I’m going to California! I’m going to...

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November 12, 2015

Blogger: Darby Pak

When people imagine a college student, they imagine books, constant studying for tests and classes, and more books and when people imagine a college they picture a place of learning and academia. And while our student body at Oxy embodies all of these traits, and Oxy is a place of learning and academia we students still know how to have a bit of fun. Here at Oxy, one of the many wonderful facilities available to students is Johnson Hall, with a media wall on the first floor and hallways with whiteboard walls located on every floor. On the whiteboard walls, students can do work, writing in preparation for a test, drawing diagrams to check their memory, writing descriptions of chemical compounds, or drawing the popular meme Pepe.


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November 11, 2015

Blogger: Marlaina Bemis

My first day of volunteering with Peer Health Exchange did not go as I had planned. Then again, no one can quite predict how ninth grade health classes will go. I remember how hard of a time my ninth grade friends and I gave our sex-ed teacher Mindy. I’m pretty sure she didn’t appreciate the jelly beans flying across the room.

I stepped out of the car with my PHE shirt on and my white binder in hand. Even though I wasn’t teaching the class, I was still nervous, and not being able to find the entrance to the school did nothing to calm my nerves. When I finally stepped into the courtyard of the school, I knew I was in trouble when a loud bell rang across campus. Swarms of students funneled out of the various classrooms spread out around the...

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November 10, 2015

Blogger: Neah Bois

Hello internet and interested future Oxy students! Today I wanted to tell you all about the opportunities on campus to get involved with clubs and organizations. When I first got to campus, I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do, and many of my friends felt the same way. Luckily, Oxy puts on an amazing involvement fair in the first few weeks of school. The fair takes over the quad, music blasts from various speakers, and there is an overall sense of excitement and possibility. I went from booth to booth speaking with upperclassman students along the way. It was hard to not sign up for everything! There were different sporting clubs ranging from rugby and martial arts to Quidditch and hiking; artistic clubs such as different dance troupes, spoken word, and Oxy graphic design...

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November 7, 2015

Blogger: Matt Hao

Ahh Fall. The smell of Pumpkin-Spice Lattes fill the air, scattered leaves of red, yellow, and orange cover the ground, students breaking out those North Face sweaters and Ugg boots. Wait hold up, something’s not right – oh right we’re in LA! Sorry, I got confused with my fantasies of those magical fall days. Let’s take a look at what fall is really like here at Oxy, and what makes it just as magical.

First of all, the weather during the fall months has been sunny skies and 80° to 90° weather – give or take a few rainy hours. Now, I originate from Northern California (go Giants) so this weather is not that unusual to me. However, I saw many Snapchat stories of rainy days around Oxy that were captioned with something like “Finally...

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November 5, 2015

Blogger: Elise Sugarman

One of the reasons I fell in love with Oxy was because of its emphasis on “community-based learning.” My tour guide constantly repeated this phrase, crediting it for her amazing academic experience at Oxy. I, too, frequently talk about it when giving my own tours as a tour guide.

But what exactly is community-based learning? I define it as extending my education beyond the classroom and experiencing what I am learning in the surrounding community. Because of Oxy’s Los Angeles location, I have had many opportunities to apply my education beyond the classroom by visiting jazz clubs for my Jazz History class, seeing a play for my CSP, and my personal favorite, going to Dana Point to look at geological structures (shout out to the Geo Gang pictured below!).


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November 4, 2015

Blogger: Jessie Baek

The Critical Making Studio (CMS) is a learning environment where students can engage with a range of digital production tools to stimulate their scholarly interests. The aim of the CMS is to help integrate digital technologies into scholarly practices, while simultaneously supporting students’ interests in the technologies. Located at the bottom floor of the Academic Commons, the CMS offers a multitude of creative tools, including video-audio equipment, software programs, and even a 3-D printer! All you need is a current Oxy ID card to check out any of the equipment that we have available for the Oxy community. If photography and audio production interests you, some of the equipments we offer include DSLR camera kits, GoPro...

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November 2, 2015

Blogger: Emily Henderson

It’s October and for Oxy students that doesn’t just mean pumpkin spice lattes (although the campus coffee shop, the Green Bean has definitely got you covered there). At Oxy, October means fall break, homecoming/parent’s weekend, and Fall Fest. October also means midterms but who wants to talk about that, right?

I’ve had a lot of fun adventures this month, both with my friends and family from back home who came to visit and with friends I’ve made during my time here at Oxy. This year for fall break an old friend of mine came to visit for the weekend, which was a blast. We spent a day at Santa Monica swimming in the sea and soaking up some vitamin D (because when the beach is less than an hour away, who can resist?).


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October 29, 2015

Blogger: Miranda Roethler

My alarm blasts on at 4:30 am and immediately I know this is going to be a great day. Eyes half-shut, I cram some overnight essentials into my backpack, sling my heavy mesh sack of dive gear onto my back, and trudge out into the pre-dawn with a few of my hallmates. It’s spring break here at James Cook University, in Queensland, Australia, but unlike other exchange students who are going to Bali or New Zealand for the week, we are headed on a field trip.

We pick our way across campus in the dark, ducking to avoid enormous fruit bats still in the middle of their nocturnal hunting. We will take a bus and then a boat away from the mainland, across a channel, past the longest jetty in the southern hemisphere, to Orpheus Island.

Orpheus Island...

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October 28, 2015

Blogger: Natalie De Benedetti

As a first year on campus, my favorite way to get involved at Oxy is through the abundance of clubs students organize and lead. I am a member of Microfinance club, Delevan Drive club, and Dance Production. Each club I am a part of has a very different goal: financially supporting small entrepreneurs in developing countries, helping disabled children do arts and crafts projects, or performing in a spirited dance showcase during the spring semester, respectively.

Last week was my first visit to Delevan Drive Elementary School with the Delevan Drive club. The students in the two first grade classes are disabled to different extents. Some have learning disabilities, and others are in wheelchairs. Each classroom had at least 3 teachers to help the students with...

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