Paige’s Interview with Todd

InterviewsCollegeStudents

My friend “Todd” agreed to do an interview with me today to explore his motivation to attend college, his journey through college, and his expectations for life after he earns his Bachelors degree. Todd is a college junior at UC Davis pursuing an Animal Science degree.

*Note: This student did not want to reveal his identity and he’s camera shy, so we will call him “Todd”.

Fast Facts:

Hometown: Manteca, California

Favorite Color: Violet

Dream Job: Veterinarian

Favorite Animal: Dragon

1. What were your top college picks & why?

UC Davis because that’s the number one vet school, Cornell because that was number two for vet school, Humbolt because they had a zoology program there, but I also wanted a state school as backup, and then Cal Poly I also knew had an ag department. Then, also, I applied to Monterey, because I knew they had a Marine Biology Program and they also had animal science and EOP becauseI wanted to apply at least to one private school and it was more or less close by.

I got accepted to Humbolt & Davis…but Cornell kept sending me emails, they were like telling me to try to transfer. EOP I got waitlisted. Davis was my number one. Cornell it was like I want to get in, but at the same time I don’t know if I would have because its really pricey and then moving over there.

2. Why did you choose UC Davis?

Davis is one of the best vet schools nationally and probably internationally too, and plus its closer to home which I always liked.

3. When you applied to UC Davis, did you think you’d get in?

I thought I could, there was a chance but I also knew there was a chance that I wouldn’t, so I was more nervous. I wasn’t for sure about it, but I had a feeling that I might. One of my teachers said that if you’re in the top 10 % at your school you’re guaranteed acceptance to one UC, its not guaranteed which one, but you are guaranteed to one. And that’s the reason I only applied to one UC, just in case.

4. What did you do in high school to prepare for college?

I took 13 AP classes, I took the PSAT like three times, the SAT twice, the ACT once, I joined the Kewanis club, so I could get community service, so that I could beef up my application.

5. What drew you to your current career goal or field instead of others?

I always liked animals and always wanted to be around them. It wasn’t ’til I had a bird [canary] that ended up getting a disease, and the fact that I couldn’t help the bird, and I think that drew me more toward veterinarian, instead of being a zookeeper or animal behaviorist. Like, helping animals in pain.

6. How important is happiness in your future career?

I feel like it’s one of the most important factors, because you need to be able to continue what you’re doing or else your life quality will go downhill and you don’t want to be waking up every single day, that’s how people get depressed. Depression leads to suicide.

7. What do you expect to get out of college?

What I expect to get is pretty much the proof that I was able to go and do a strenuous task and stick with it so that employers can see that, and so I have a better chance to get a job. So pretty much to get a job…well, a well paying job.

8. Before you started college, what was your vision of life after attaining a college degree and how has that vision changed?

The only vision that has changed is probably not going to vet school, but I feel like most of my other beliefs have stayed the same..about life in general, like how I viewed life stayed the same. It’s just like some of my goals have been altered, which would be vet school. I feel like that is really the only change that I see in myself. How I perceive the world, I feel that is still the same. Like, how I view people when I see someone walking down the street. How I interact with someone, I don’t know. Its hard to explain, but there hasn’t really been a change in that. I guess my mentality has stayed the same.

9. What is your mentality?

You reap what you sow.

10. What is the greatest challenge that you’ve faced in your efforts to gain an education?

While I was trying to get into college, it was definitely a lot of the application process and figuring out how to make myself stand out. In college, it was probably the chemistry courses – so far in college that has been the biggest challenge for me.

11. If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?

Go to more office hours in college my freshman year and go to tutoring more.

12. Has your pursuit of a higher education been worth it?

I feel like right now it’s too early to tell because I haven’t received [a degree]. So I can’t really see how my life has changed with it. I expected myself to go to college so it’s hard to say. I guess I was expecting to go to college and was expecting to have this lifestyle more or less, so I don’t know I can envision my life without going to college.

13. Do you think you would have been better off just getting a job or skipping college altogether?

I don’t think so, to employers I feel that there is a bias, and you seem less appealing unless you have personal connections. So I feel like they would view you more negatively compared to someone with a degree. So I feel like with a degree, you have a higher chance of getting a job.

14. Are you optimistic about finding a job after college?

I feel like no, but I feel like my chances would be higher than if I didn’t, so I know that having a degree is going to help, but I’m sure I will find a job, its just that I don’t know how long it will be after getting my degree.

15. Which is better- experience or education?

I feel like experience is better short-term and education is better long-term, because I feel like with experience you already know how to do things, so you can perform more adequately at the time; but if you go with education, you’ll have less experience, but you have knowledge of different things that you can later apply once you start getting those experiences and be able to progress yourself even further than someone who just has experience and are more limited in mindset. So I feel like long-term education is better.

As always, I hope you all enjoyed this interview and gained something from it. Stay tuned for my next interview!

I’ll keep you posted.

-Paige

Mosquito Bites

mehiking

My friends suggested going for a short hike in Davis-a place of big trees, a flowing river, blue skies and an outrageously bright sun. Of course I said yes and soon we were off! Once we got there I realized a few errors of judgement. My first mistake was wearing flimsy shoes that were basically slippers. My next “Uh-Oh” moment came when I saw the mosquitoes swarming and realized I didn’t have bug repellent. Luckily these “Uh-Oh” moments didn’t ruin my entire experience. My friends and I were having fun in the water, enjoying the scenery, and looking at the plants and wildlife that the reserve had to offer. Overall, I got to catch baby fish, tadpoles, and frogs with my bare hands (which I safely returned back to their watery homes before leaving) and I even learned how to skip rocks! Well, kinda.

mehiking4

mehiking3

At one point as we were walking back to the car, we ascended a trail that led up toward the parking lot. Unfortunately, I wanted to go back down to the trail by the river, so I climbed over a hill and started the descent. I thought I was brave and adventurous, but when I reached the bottom of the hill I realized the trail I was looking for was nowhere to be found, and I was surrounded by spider webs, scary trees, and thorny plants. So naturally, I cursed myself for being so stupid and “adventurous” and I ran straight through the forest, kinda like that scene in The Hunger Games when Jennifer Lawrence runs straight through the forest with that concentrated stare, except I was wearing slippers, had disheveled hair, and a “Holy Sh*t!” look on my face. I ran past the trees and cobwebs, past the thorny bushes (which treated my legs as scratching posts) and ran smack dab into the trail. Free at last! Now all I had to do was figure out where I was, because I didn’t recognize the trail I had just galloped to. Luckily my friends and I found each other and we were off once again to look for big fish!

Reserve2

Note to Self: Next time bring bug repellant, wear longer shorts and taller socks, and for God’s sake, stick to the trails!

Reserve3

mehiking2

I Can’t Cook!

Can'tCook

Every time I step into the kitchen and dare to try to make edible food, I pray the fire alarm won’t go off. I’ve never been good at cooking; actually I’m downright terrible at it. I mess up the simplest of recipes and if it CAN be burned, trust me it WILL be burned-by me. This morning I had plans to take my picnic blanket and bike out for a ride through the park, sit down and enjoy the day while eating sweet potato fries (one of my favorite snacks!). Of course, that idea was quickly extinguished when I popped my fries out of the oven to discover they were completely blackened! Holy cow! Why can’t I just get this cooking/baking/making edible food thing right?!

SweetPotato

Introducing: Paige’s Interviews with College Students

As I neared the end of my senior year in college, I read an article about the worth of a college education. I was shocked to learn that there is a growing number of people who believe that college is worthless. I remember in high school everyone-our parents, counselors, teachers, and classmates-pushed us all to apply to college. I remember as a senior in high school thinking that if only I went to college my life would be changed for the better. It was this enthusiasm that kept me so devoted to finishing my college education. This is why hearing that college is worthless is of such importance to me, to graduating high school seniors, and to current college students. I think a good way to gain insight into this issue to hear from the students who are currently pursuing their own college education. Here is the first of several interviews with college students:

InterviewsCollegeStudents

I arranged an interview with my friend “Sally,” who is a college senior at UC Davis pursuing an Animal Science degree. The purpose of this interview was to learn about her motivation to attend college, her journey through college, and her expectations for life after she completes her Bachelors degree.

*Note: This student did not want to reveal her identity so we will call her “Sally.”

Fast Facts:

Hometown: Stockton, California

Favorite Color: Violet

Dream Job: Doctor

Favorite Animal: Cat, then Chicken

1. Why did you choose UC Davis?

Because it accepted me before Fresno State did.

2. Did you end up getting accepted by Fresno State?

I did.

3. What?! So why did you choose Davis?

Because it was closer. It’s an hour away. Fresno is 2 hours away.

4. That’s crazy-we wouldn’t have met!

I know haha.

5. Can you tell me about your journey to UC Davis and college? You can start with high school.

Mmm..I didn’t do much in high school.

6. So did you see yourself going to college in high school.

I think so… no.

7. So what did you think back then?

I was like “I’ll just get a job and things will work out.”

8. What made you decide to go to college instead of working?

My friends were going to college and I was like “I should start doing something with myself”. So I started going. Also, my sister was pregnant at the time, so I wanted to compete with her.

9. And how did you start the process?

I just went to school, my community college and I’m like “What do I need?” and they told me what I needed, they told me what I needed to do, and I did it.

10. What was your end goal?

To be a nurse, which did not work out because the nursing program didn’t accept me.

11. So, how did you end up making your way to Davis?

I spent like forever at my community college, did a bunch of different programs, and I was like I like animals, I should be a vet. And I’m like I should just apply to UC Davis and so I did. I didn’t really want to be a vet.

12. You didn’t really want to be a vet?

I mean, like, I wanted to be in, like, the medical field I guess.

13. What drew you there versus any other field?

They make money.

14. What do you expect to get out of college?

I expect to get a job, and it better not be working at OSH because I have a damn degree.

15. Before you started college, what was your vision of life after attaining a college degree? How has your vision changed from then to now?

Then I was like, I’ll be out of college in 2 years, I’ll be a nurse. I’ll have my life together. And now I’m like, I don’t even know what I’m going to do when I graduate. Hopefully find a good job, a good career. But I was more optimistic back in the day. Now I’m, like, realistic I guess.

16. What made that change?

Maybe being at community college for all those damn years. All those programs rejecting me.

17. What other programs did you apply to at your community college?

The radiology program, applied to EOP for pharmacy, Radiology technician-they never got me. Mmmm what else? That’s it.

18. When you applied to Davis did you think you’d get in?

Hell no! I was like, oh my god, they made a mistake. Look at my GPA! They made a mistake!

19. Really?

Yeah because all my classmates, were like “oh my god I needed to get a TAG and you need a 3.5 if you don’t have one they say you wont get in.” So I was like you know what I didn’t get a TAG, my GPA is not even above a 3.0, I’m probably not going to get in.

20. What has been the most difficult part of pursuing a college education?

Probably I can’t keep to one thing. I keep changing my mind. I keep getting bored.

21. Why do you feel you get bored?

I don’t know. It’s not that I get bored, it’s just that if this doesn’t work out let me just do something else. Ok, that didn’t work out? Let me do this. Ok, that didn’t work out? Let me do this. Instead of sticking with it and working harder, I just switch and then I have to start again. And then switch, oh no I have to start again. And then switch because now they require this and that. I think that’s what it is.

22. Right now you are deciding between applying to vet school and med school. Which one are you going to pursue and if it doesn’t go your way what’s your next step?

I’m probably going to pursue medical, because I know vets don’t make money. And my whole point of going to school was so that I could make a lot of money. I don’t care if I save animals. I can save them as a doctor.

23. So what if you apply and they don’t accept you?

Well I’m hoping to get a state job and I’ll just keep it for the next 40 years.

24. But you won’t reapply to medical school again?

No, I’ll just give up then. If I have a good career that I can see being long term and it pays good, then I’m just going to quit it [medical school]. But if I don’t have anything then I might as well keep applying. I’ll get in eventually.

25. So how important is happiness in your future career?

Not very. I just want money. Money will make me happy. Knowing that I can pay the bills and I can help my family out will make me happy. I stayed at OSH for 4 years and I wasn’t happy there.

26. If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say? 

I would tell myself stop goofing off, because when I started school at first I was like “Oh my god, I don’t need to study blah blah blah.” And that’s why my GPA was so low because, when I first started I was like “I don’t care I’m just going to go to school, get my financial aid,” and after my financial aid finished I was like “Sh*t I better get my sh*t together.” That was three years in though, that was too late. I couldn’t pick myself back up.

27. Has your pursuit of a higher education been worth it?

I don’t think so…I don’t know.

28. Do you think you would have been better off just getting a job or skipping college all together?

Well, I’m hoping that it will have paid off, but I won’t know til I graduate and get an actual job. If I find a job that I could have found without having a degree, then it’s not worthless. But if I find a job that I needed a degree in, then it’s worth it. It just depends after I graduate and when I find a job. But right now I don’t know.

29. Are you optimistic about finding a job?

Yes. I’m hoping to find a state job. And they require Bachelors. So I guess it’s worth it. But if I don’t, I don’t have a back up.

I hope you all enjoyed this interview and gained something from it. Stay tuned for my next interview!

I’ll keep you posted.

-Paige

Paige’s Book Club: Book Review #1

osborne

Book: The Job: True Tales from the Life of a New York City Cop

Author: Steve Osborne

1. What made me want to read this book?

Earlier this year I attended a Police Community Academy at UC Davis during which I learned about what police do in my community, important laws to abide by, and some procedures police operate by. This was an eye-opening experience to me and since attending the community academy, I have wanted to learn more about policing in the United States. My curiosity drew me to books authored by police officers. After all, what better way to gain a better understanding of the officers’ daily lives and challenges and to gain a better appreciation of the world around me?

2. Which passages were the most interesting, disturbing, humorous, or sad?

My favorite passage was on page 14, where Osborne stated that “At any one time there are ten times more drug dealers out on the street than there are cops.” This surprised me because I had never really thought about how many drug dealers were walking around. I had especially never thought about whether or not they outnumbered police officers in my area. This one line taught me to think about things that I had never been concerned about before.

3. What has this book taught me? Has it broadened my perspective on the world or some part of my life?

This book gave me incredible insights into the daily life of a police officer. I felt like I was transported to the scene of the crime, I felt the fear and excitement of gunfire, the frustration of facing an angry mob, and the pain and sadness of telling a parent that a loved one died. Reading this book taught me that police officers are human; they have feelings, emotions, hopes and dreams, just as I do. Osborne has definitely broadened my perspective on what it is like to be a police officer.

4. Has this book changed my opinion about anything or anyone?

The social tension surrounding the topic of policing in the U.S. has divided people into opposing opinions that are either for or against police. Before I read this book, my opinion of police lay somewhere in the middle – somewhere between a sense of hatred and distrust of the police and empathy for and admiration of the brave officers that roam the streets and face the fears that many run away from. After reading this book, my view of the police has shifted more toward admiration and empathy for officers. I still feel that problems exist, but I now have a better understanding of the difficulties that come with policing.

5. What is the writing style like? Engaging, boring, easy to understand?

Osborne writes in a style that is easy-to-read, simple and direct. He doesn’t beat around the bush; rather he says what happened, where, what he did about it and why. I could hear his New York accent as I read, and by the end of the book I felt like we were friends.

The next book I will be reading is Thank You For Your Service by David Finkel.

Feel free to join me in reading and discussing each book!

Have you read this book and want to share? Feel free to post in the comments section below!

Happy reading!

-Paige

Introducing Paige’s Summer Book Club!

I have always enjoyed reading and thought you might too, so I’ve made a goal to post at least 5 book reviews this summer. Hmmm…if my summer starts in June and ends in September, then I need to read…oh I was never any good at math, so let’s just say my goal is to post a review every other week. Aha!

I visited the library and picked out a few books to start with:

SummerReads

  1. The Job: True Tales from the Life of a New York City Cop by Steve Osborne
  2. Thank You For Your Service by David Finkel
  3. Travels with Casey: My Journey Through Our Dog-Crazy Country by Benoit Denzet-Lewis

To make this easier and to facilitate conversation, during each book review I will answer a series of questions (listed below) for each book.

  1. What made me want to read this book?
  2. Which passages were the most interesting, disturbing, humorous, or sad?
  3. What has this book taught me? Has it broadened my perspective on the world or some part of my life?
  4. Has this book changed my opinion about anything or anyone?
  5. What is the author’s writing style like? Engaging, boring, easy to understand?

Feel free to join me in reading and discussing each book!

Happy reading!

-Paige

Nice To Meet You

I think it’s time I tell you more about myself and my furry friends!

6948polaroid

I’m Paige and I am a twenty-something college graduate trying to find out what to do with my degree. I just earned a B. S. in Animal Science from UC Davis (Go Aggies!!) and am currently focusing on making new memories while paying off my tab (code word for student loan debt). My college career started at the great Bakersfield College in Bakersfield, CA where I spent three years earning an A. S. in Biology. I then transferred to U.C. Davis in 2013 and graduated in June 2015. So far, I’ve had plenty of wonderful adventures and misadventures and hope to share them with you all!

Fun Facts:                                                                                                                                             I LOVE animals.                                                                                                                      Favorite animal: Pig                                                                                                                    Favorite treat: Gerber Banana Baby Food                                                                                   Dream Occupation: Veterinarian

CharPolaroid

Charlie, Charlie St. Cloud, Charlie Bear, and Char. These are all the names I call my baby girl, my yorkie-poo Charlie. She is the best dog anyone could hope for. She is loyal, courageous, playful, yet demanding. I first met Charlie in July 2010, about a month before I started college. My mom & I were visiting neighbors when all of a sudden a bunch of white fluff balls ran toward us. Charlie looked like a little cloud floating toward me. The moment I looked at Charlie & all her happy playfulness, I knew we were going to have a great life together-I brought her home that very day. The two of us have gone through many ups and downs together. I can’t imagine a better friend than my lil girl Char!

Fun Facts:                                                                                                                                        She LOVES kids and cats.                                                                                                                  Weight: about 8lbs +/- a lot of fluff!                                                                                             Like most small dogs, she thinks she is the biggest and bravest of the bunch.

pumpkinpolaroidolliepolaroid

Now, my mom would disagree when I say that these two beauties are my fur babies, but they are! So what if I have to catnap them from my mom’s house to be able to call them my own? Haha! Pumpkin was found in a Wienerschnitzel parking lot on a hot summer day. My mom spent several hours coaxing her  into her arms. Since then, Pumpkin has been fixed on our windowsill, greeting us all when we walk through the doors.

Ollie was born to a feral mother cat. My mom adopted Ollie when she visited a yard sale and a woman shared the news of a feral cat and her kittens. My mom picked out Ollie because of her beautiful calico markings and gorgeous blue eyes. Although she acted the part of a feral cat for a while, she has since warmed up to us all and is the most playful of the bunch.

Fun Facts:                                                                                                                                             They are both talkative (Meow!)                                                                                                  They both love to play with hair-typically my mom’s hair (ouch!)                                    Although they were both born on the streets, they are both VERY loving cats.

Hope you enjoyed this post. Let me know if you have any questions about myself or my fur babies in the comments below!

Talk to ya later!

-Paige