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Friday, March 1, 2024

In Transition: C-C-Cool Stuff

Being a student is hard. It’s a long, difficult process that can feel isolating and even impossible at times.

But the glass isn’t always half empty!

There are a ton of great things about being a transfer student (and a UC Davis student in general) that I’ve discovered over the past year and a half. Knowing that I’ll be graduating in June, I feel like I have an obligation to pass on my wisdom. So here you go!

Once I transferred here, I was struck by an odd jealousy. Sure, it was cool to finally be a UC Davis student, but I still felt like I was missing out on a lot.

It can be really hard to meet people as a transfer student, and one of the things I was most jealous of is that I never got to live in the dorms.

Like I said, it was an odd jealousy. To me, there’s just nothing like being thrown into that “college” experience by learning to cook ramen in a coffee pot and packing your entire closet into a room smaller than your shower. I mean, where else can you get that kind of knowledge?

Oh and the Dining Commons (DC)! Again, I know — I’ve heard it a thousand times. It’s weird that I’m jealous I never had swipes. But think about it … having access to unlimited food that you don’t have to cook or clean up yourself? What’s better than that?

But as much as I feel like I missed out on those key experiences, transferring in also gave me a lot of unique opportunities.

It was also super cool to be able to have my car with me 24/7. I’ve never really experienced a time that I didn’t have my car — I bought it on my own when I was 16 and have had it ever since — so to find out that people had to bike to the grocery store or take a bus to Target was incredibly foreign to me.

It was just so nice to be able to drive around to anywhere I needed, especially home.

Between a few bad cases of strep throat my first few months in Davis, dislocating a rib after multiple back spasms and missing my puppy more than I could bear, having that privilege was more wonderful than I have words for.

And because I was an older student, I felt like I already had a good grip on balancing my school and work load. Yes, my UC Davis classes were much tougher than any class I took at my community college, but still. I felt like I had all the tools I needed to navigate my way through tough classes and nine hour shifts.

I had also had the chance to live on my own before coming to UC Davis. Balancing a budget with a full-time school schedule and a full-time work load at 20 years old was an incredibly powerful, and irreplaceable experience.

I’d also like to point out how great it was coming into college as a 21-year-old.

I mean, is there really any better way to transition into adult life than taking a midterm after your first mojito night? Talk about grace under pressure, preparing oneself under non-ideal circumstances, and learning from your mistakes — enjoying a pitcher of that sweet, sugary mint deliciousness that you later discover is your worst enemy.

While mojito night and I may have a love-hate relationship, I will still miss it. There are just some things in Davis that you can’t find anywhere else. Like those DC cookies. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — I will forever miss those DC cookies. There’s just nothing like them.

Aside from that, one of my biggest fears of graduating is that I will never again live in a place that has an In-N-Out, Chipotle, Habit, Mikuni’s, Black Bear Diner, Burgers and Brew and a Dutch Bros. pretty much walking distance from my house.

And those quirky little Davis things that you just can’t find anywhere else in the world: egg heads, the Arboretum, crazy bikers and DC cookies — I know I already listed those, but I just can’t help myself. They’re too good!

Regardless of whether you’re a freshman or a graduating senior, take the time to appreciate all this cool stuff, and DEFINITELY swipe me in if we ever get the chance.

If you haven’t had the chance to experience some of these things yet, email SARAH MARSHALL at smmarshall@ucdavis.edu to hear more!



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