Pumpkin to Talk About: Berkeley in Autumn!

With the transition of summer into fall comes beautiful color changes, pumpkin-flavored everything, and sweater weather. Let’s celebrate the autumn and Halloween season by taking a look into some of my favorite fall Berkeley activities:

Go for a walk

In my hometown, the weather stays the same all year round – Before I came to Berkeley, I’d never really experienced the four seasons. While one could still argue that seasons in California don’t really count as “true seasons,” they would have to admit that seeing the leaves change color in Berkeley is one of the most beautiful things ever! A walk through Elmwood (perhaps on the way to pick up your favorite pumpkin-flavored treat) or even just through campus is a great way to spend some time outdoors and enjoy the ever-changing colors of the trees, crunchy leaf piles, and crisp fall air.
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How to Start Meditating as a Cal Student

We are now well into the school year…it’s midterm season every week! And each of us are piling up with work and assignments. Although it’s stressful, there are many positive ways to cope with these types of stresses. One of my most preferred ways to do this is through meditation. If you’d like to learn about the secrets to dealing with a stressful school year, then stay on! You’ll be a master of meditation in no time with this comprehensive guide.

Meditate
Meditating outside

Whenever you think about meditation, what pops into your head? It might be a monk sitting at the tip of the mountain, closing their eyes and crossing their legs. Some of you might think.. this is something that I definitely do not see myself doing. I actually thought the same way a year back. However, that’s until I realized the purpose of what meditation does to your mind and body. It’s a technique that allows you to relax, be calm, and, at the same time, fully concentrate on a topic of your desire. This can be your breathing, your physiological state (heart beat), or anything you want. You should tailor each mediation to a specific part of your day. For example, when I wake up, I want to be in a state where I’m motivated to start the day. This calls for a gratitude and affirmation meditation session. I will concentrate my mind on the things that I am grateful for in life (my family/friends, education, work, or just the little things in life like being able to breathe fresh air every single day). Then, for the affirmation portion, I will tell myself that I am the best and my uniqueness is what make me the greatest. This positive thinking directly influences the start of your day. Not only do you feel motivated to start your morning, but it also serves as a daily reminder of why you exist in this world. It’s a powerful habit to establish. read more

Pick-a-Major: Finding What Works for You

One of the hardest decisions I faced when I entered the College of Letters and Science was figuring out what I wanted to study. With over 80 full majors and over 100 minors to choose from, the possibility of what major to choose results in endless combinations. Not to mention the option of applying to majors between other colleges; actually deciding what path to choose can seem like an insurmountable task. It definitely felt that way when I was a freshman two years ago. It seemed like there were just too many interesting classes to take and not enough time in my schedule. read more

Berkeley Small Businesses to Love and How to Support Them!

telegraph ave
Telegraph and Bancroft

When you first come to Berkeley, you might be bombarded by how much there is to do and see here. From the quirky bookstores to the vegan cupcakes, the city of Berkeley is teeming with unique and cultivated experiences. Working as the lead business and economy reporter for the Daily Californian has allowed me to have the opportunity to get to know some of the really amazing small businesses here in Berkeley! My name is Dina and I’m going to be your virtual tour guide through some of the best small businesses in Berkeley! read more

Participating in a Virtual Summer Internship

I was in the second semester of my sophomore year and had only had two jobs my entire life. Both of those jobs were not part of the fields within my major (Sustainable Environmental Design). I felt like it was finally time to try out something closer to my major and explore what was out there. I was always interested in studying abroad, so I looked into what they had to offer. 

Due to the Covid19 pandemic, many programs were being held virtually or were completely canceled for the time being. But then I remembered a newsletter I saw from my college about a virtual internship program offered at UC Davis and looked into it. After reading through what they had to present, I decided to participate in the Green Technology, Sustainability, and Environment Virtual Internship Program. It seemed to fit my field of work, and besides, I did not have many plans over the summer. What was really nice about this program is that it included both a course and an internship, so I received units while participating in an eight week internship. The paperwork for attending another university’s abroad program was hectic at first, but I got through it after various emails.  read more

At a Crossroads: Cal’s Dining Halls, Ranked

An integral part of the college freshman experience is the transition from living at home to living on your own. The residence halls hold a special place in the hearts of all who inhabited them, and are home to so many memories. With each housing plan in the dorms comes a meal plan, redeemable at any of the 4 dining halls surrounding campus. Many students have very strong opinions about their favorite or least favorites – here is my comprehensive rankings of the dining halls, evaluated on food quality and diversity, ambiance, appearance, and overall experience.

4. Cafe 3
Situated mere blocks from campus, Cafe 3 is a popular destination for students looking for a quick bite to eat between classes on the south side of campus. This dining hall is known for its diversity of vegetarian and vegan options (though honestly I think all of the dining halls offer the same amount of plant-based alternatives), and is conveniently located in the center of the Unit 3 Residence Hall courtyard. There’s no denying it – Cafe 3 is always a safe choice in terms of distance and options. The inside of the building itself is a little dated – the color scheme is a hodgepodge of neon colors reminiscent of decades past, but there are ample seating options both inside and outside if you so please. Overall, Cafe 3 serves residents of two of the largest residence halls and, although its decor misses the mark a little bit, provides a space for students to work, hang, and eat, as any good dining hall does. read more