Mental Health is Important: Tips to Finding a Therapist

Berkeley can be a tough school; and with grinding academics, a vigorous social sphere, and other stress-inducing activities it is so important to take care of your mental health. There are many ways to tend to your needs, but one thing that has worked really well for me is therapy.

Before anything else, it is really important that you understand everyone can benefit from therapy. This means you must debunk any preconceived notions of therapy as something for “mentally ill” people. Therapy comes in all forms and is meant to target and help whoever is attending it. If I had it my way, every person in the world would be able to access free therapy. read more

The View from the Boards: My Experience as a Mic Man

You’ve probably heard of a lot of different Cal Spirit Groups on this blog. We have our Cal Band, the Rally Committee, our Cheer and Dance teams, and our loveable mascot, Oski. But as much as the Mic Men get our share of love and affection during game days, it’s sometimes difficult for others to understand what it is that we do and how we fit with Cal Spirit.

The Mic Men are the group responsible for leading the cheers during games and tailgates! We make sure that Cal fans in the audience keep their energy and enthusiasm up for our student-athletes. We’re leading those cheers even when the situation looks bleak for our team. read more

The Myth of “ONE” Best Fit University

Maybe you applied to 10 schools and got into all of them! Congratulations!

Perhaps you were waitlisted to Berkeley, accepted your offer elsewhere, and now you got in to Berkeley! Now what?

Maybe you didn’t get into the schools you hoped for and are now overwhelmed as you compare and contrast your options.

As a college senior reflecting on the college decisions process, I think the college decision was too overhyped for me. I remember my thoughts that kept me up at night, trying to search for a sign that would reveal the school that was the one. Committing to a location and university for four years is daunting— but your unique soul and spirit are stronger than the transformation that any one university can do to you. I’ve spent time immersed in two undergraduate environments and come to realize that both would have been fantastic options, not one better than the other. read more

How to (mostly) write an essay.

Whether you find yourself in a STEM class (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) or in creative writing class, essays will follow you throughout your time at Cal and any other higher education institution you find yourself in.

Some may rejoice while others may think it is just an unnecessary way of reaching a conclusion. I am not here to debate its necessity, rather help provide advice and some ideas for you when that day arrives where you sit down for several hours to brainstorm and write your essay. read more

Creating the Distance: Unexpected Benefits of Staying Close to Home

I never wanted to go to school close to home. I thought that the college I went to had to be physically far away in order for me to gain the independence I yearned for. My first year at Berkeley taught me that I was wrong. My parents didn’t contact me at all after dropping me off at my dorm — not even a single text. Eventually it got to the point at which I was concerned something had happened to them, and since then we’ve had a more regular flow of communication. But distancing myself from my old life at home served its advantages: I found myself feeling more and more integrated into the campus community, and the more integrated I became the more I realized I was finding my independence. Instead of playing tourist in a new city, I served as a tour guide for new friends who had never been to the Bay Area before. I was asked for restaurant recommendations so often that I started to keep a running list on my phone. That’s not to mention that things like moving and going home for breaks are infinitely easier than they would be if I had moved further away. read more

Course Highlight: L&S 12, The Berkeley Changemaker

As a campus ambassador, some of the most common questions I get on my tours are: what are some of the best classes to take? And, this one is a big one, but why Berkeley? What makes our university different from the rest?

The answer to these questions lies in L&S 12: The Berkeley Changemaker, a 2 unit course that students can take on a pass/no pass basis.

inserted quote: “As a rising senior looking for a course to take during the summer...I decided to add this course was because of how many different leaders from various majors throughout the campus would be invited...In a sense we were given the honor to talk to the giants that paved a way and len[t] a shoulder to us evergrowing future giants.”

First offered in Summer of 2020, this course was so popular that it filled up a waitlist multiple times and expanded to accommodate huge interest. The course features 22 UC Berkeley faculty members including Chancellor Carol Christ and secretary of the treasury Janet Yellen, that guide students through a series of readings, lectures, and activities. The course syllabus for L&S 12 outlines an introduction to changemaking, training towards becoming a solution-oriented critical thinker, and culminates with an action plan for how you can be a leader on a tangible community project. read more

Living in Berkeley: Ultimate Travel Guide [Part 1]

Are you a new or prospective student to UC Berkeley? Or are you a returning student who needs new travel ideas around the Bay Area? Either way, this travel guide will give you a sense of how many options Berkeley really has to offer…I will feature my all time FAVORITE places to hike/visit, restaurants to indulge at, and more!

As an incoming student at Berkeley, you may have done your research on the Internet regarding places to visit. But you might have also wanted an opinion from a fellow golden bear. This is what I’m here for! I’m currently a junior at UC Berkeley who has lived here for 3 years…! Let’s go ahead and start with the TOP 5 PLACES YOU CAN TRAVEL TO IN BERKELEY (WITHIN WALKING DISTANCE): read more

You’re a Golden Bear! Now What?

To all the new Golden Bears out there, congratulations! Welcome to the best school in the world, we are so excited to welcome you to Berkeley. College decisions are so exciting and stressful, and it doesn’t stop there. There’s still so much to do between now and when you set foot in your first college class, let’s dive on in to it.

First, you need to submit a housing application. housing.berkeley.edu will show you what options you have and what each is specifically like. WE have traditional dorms, suite options, and other apartments that you can look in to. If you want to choose your roommate, you can add that in to your application as well. Just remember, as your 5th housing preference put “any room any location” this will boost your chances at getting a spot, if you don’t put this and all your options are filled up then you won’t get a housing offer. read more

Straying from Strada

With the only Starbucks being at least a 10 minute walk from campus, students have become pretty good at expanding their coffee horizons beyond the world’s largest chain, but students still seem to settle on what feels comfortable and convenient. When it comes to coffee, and to life in general, you should never be afraid to explore! Here’s one gal’s review of a few places and recommendations for more! 

Caffe Strada, conveniently located right across from Phoebe Hearst Anthropology Museum and easily accessible from Unit 1 and many Greek houses, is the first coffee stop for many visitors and incoming students, but, in my opinion, it doesn’t live up to the hype. Don’t get me wrong, it has a great outdoor seating area making it perfect for studying! Great vibes, but the coffee itself? Overpriced and subpar. I would also knock them for their customer service, as the employees never seem that excited to help you out.  read more

Biking Berkeley: An Amateur’s Guide

Classes moving online held some major setbacks for me, but also provided some really great opportunities! Think about it: with asynchronous classes, you can have more time to enjoy the day outside and be active! While I completely understand the last thing you feel motivated to do during the pandemic is be active, I want to stress the importance of pushing yourself to do so!

Prior to the lockdowns, I didn’t think about my level of physical activity– this was because I walked to class every day, was going on adventures with friends, and was able to head to the gym whenever. Like many people, during the first few weeks of the pandemic, I was met with an overload of fatigue. Even when I identified that it was basic physics (a body in motion, stays in motion), I still didn’t know how to motivate myself to be active! read more