Tag Archives: college life

Five Ways To Make The Most Of Your Dorm Life 

Moving into a dorm can be a big adjustment for students. With some having it be their first time away from home and being in a new environment, moving into a dorm can be nerve-racking. Have no fear- because, at PUC, we make sure you settle in nicely and feel comfortable in your home away from home. 

Build A Relationship With Your Roommate 

It is so important that you build a good relationship with your roommate. It’s okay if you’re not best friends, as long as you have mutual respect. If something bothers you, try not to be scared or shy to talk about it. Your roommate might not even know there’s a problem, so bring it up with them. 

Get to Know Your RA and Dean 

Your RA is a source of help, comfort, and friendship. Some of their duties are to make sure you settle in well, do daily check-ins, and help resolve conflict. Just like your RA, your dean will always be there for you. They want you to feel at home, so don’t hesitate to reach out to them about anything.

Go To Dorm Events 

The RA’s and deans work so hard to make dorm life the best it can be for their residents. They host events, such as movie nights, holiday parties, and have weekly dorm worship. They also invite other dorms to certain events, so this is a chance for you to meet more people and make more friends. 

Know Your Neighbors 

Whether you have suitemates or not, it’s still good to know who your neighbors are. You never know what things you might have in common or could even be in the same class. What’s nice about dorming is that you get to live with your friends. You can easily meet to study together, get help on something, borrow each other’s clothes, or just hangout. 

Make Your Room Comfy

It’s essential to make your dorm room fit your comfort needs. Bring some of your personal items from home to make your room feel homey. Make your bed as cozy as you can and add decor to bring your room to life. With having new living spaces, make it the space that makes you feel more comfortable being away from home. 

Questions To Ask Your Future Roommate 

If you haven’t met your roommate yet or would like to know more about them, we put together a list of questions to ask your future roommate as you prepare to live together.

What’s your sleeping schedule like? Asking about their sleeping schedule will let you know if it works out with your sleeping schedule. If you’re a light sleeper, ask if they snore, sleep talk, or stay up past midnight studying. 

Are there any rules you want to establish before moving in? During this process, be open-minded and considerate, and find solutions where you both can be happy. 

What’s your schedule like? Comparing class and work schedules will let you know if you have classes together, when they need to wake up, and when you can have the room to yourself.

How do you like to study? Like asking about their schedule, their study patterns give you an idea of where they get work done and how long they stay up at night. If one or both of you likes to study in your room, respect each other’s study habits and space. 

Do you take showers in the morning or/and at night? You might not think this is a relevant question, but it is to some people. Let’s say you’re ready to hop into the shower and get ready for the day but can’t because it’s occupied. The same goes for going to bed. It’s a simple question, so just ask. 

How organized or clean do you like to be? Even though you two have separate sides of the room, be considerate of how you tidy your space. If you keep your room clean, it might be hard to live with someone who doesn’t.

Do you have any allergies? Note their allergies or other health issues. This will keep you alert if you want to share food or if they need medical attention. 

What are your pet peeves? Get those pet peeves out in the open. You don’t know if you have a habit that could be your roommate’s pet peeve or vice versa. 

How do you feel about having friends over? See if you both are on the same page about having people over. No one likes to be uncomfortable in their own space.

What appliances are you planning on bringing? Check if they plan to purchase a fridge or microwave- so you don’t double on appliances. This could also bring up the question if they’re okay sharing items. 

What do you enjoy doing? Their hobbies, passions, and interests give you a sense of who they are and help you learn if you share similar interests.

What are your favorite foods? Food is always something to bond over. Knowing their favorite foods can help you figure out which restaurants you can possibly go to together or cook together. 

What kind of music and shows do you like? A basic question that lets you know more about your roommate and find something you both have in common. They can also introduce you to new music and shows too! 

It’s okay if you’re a bit nervous to ask some of these questions. Remember to keep an open mind and be considerate of their feelings and opinions. Having a roommate is a new experience, and these questions will help you get to know each other better.

You Will Never Regret Studying Abroad

Sarah West graduated from PUC this past school year with a Bachelor of Social Work & Bachelor of Arts in Spanish Studies. One year during college, she enrolled in the ACA Argentina program and loved the experience so much that she wanted to do a summer program- so she did. Sarah recently returned stateside after spending the majority of her summer studying abroad at Villa Aurora in Italy. Although there were a few setbacks, she shares that you will never regret going abroad. 

Tell us about your time in Italy. 

My time in Italy was amazing, even with the few bumps in the road. I got COVID my first week there, so I had to isolate for a week. But once I was freed (tested negative), I was able to return to class with ease. The classes all students take are Conversation, Grammar, art for tours, art history, and Italian culture. If you are not in the intermediate level, then you also take Phonetics. With the ACA program, we visited Cinque Terre, Florence, Pisa, Rome, Venice, and Siena. All of them are day trips, except Rome, which is an overnight stay. 

What made you want to study in Italy?

I loved the ACA Argentina program so much that I knew I wanted to do a summer program before I graduate. So for me, it was between Italy and Spain. I had heard great things about the Italian cafeteria and that made my choice. I also had been to Italy once before and loved it, so I wanted to spend more time there. 

You’ve also studied in Argentina. How have these experiences been different from each other? 

The differences between the Argentina and Italy programs are the ability to travel. Italy is about the size of California, so with access to a car, bus, or train, you can really go anywhere in the county. Argentina on the other hand is about as long as the United States, and there are little pockets of towns/cities with nothing in-between. Argentina is good if your goal is to learn Spanish and experience the culture of Argentina. Italy, and I assume other European programs, are good for traveling, but more people will probably know English, so finding a push to learn the language may be a little more difficult. 

Describe your time in Italy in three words.  

Amazing food/travel. 

What have been your favorite things about studying abroad in Italy?

I have loved learning about different cultures and history of the countries. I also like meeting people. While I was at the school in Italy, I ran into someone who I had met at the school in Argentina, and that was one of the craziest things I will probably ever experience. 

Did PUC play a part in your preparation for Italy?

Yes, because one of my friends had done the ACA Italy year program, and she gave me some good heads up on what to expect. I was also able to conquer the hills of Italy due to the cardio of running around PUC campus. 

What would you say to someone who is interested in ACA?

If you are interested in it, DO IT. You will never regret going, and all was regret not doing it. There will never be a time in your life when you will live in Italy for 6 weeks or Argentina for a year. You grow so much as a person and have a better understanding of yourself and the world. 

Pioneers Represent at Student-Athlete Council Summit 

(PUC student-athletes Madison Kindred & Nathan Hiss on the far right, second row.)

The Student-Athlete Council Summit is a yearly event hosted by the commissioner of the Cal Pac, where representatives from all Cal Pac schools meet and come up with proposals to make the student-athlete experience better by addressing topics that need changing and revising athletic programs as a school and conference. PUC athletes Madison Kindred (women’s volleyball) and Nathan Hiss (cross country) were chosen to represent our college athletes amongst 10 of the 13 Cal Pac schools at this year’s summit to form the 2022-2023 Student Athlete Council at Cal Maritime in Vallejo. 

As SAC representatives, Madison and Nathan’s responsibilities are to ensure that the Cal Pac is responsive to the needs of PUC athletes and resolve the many issues student-athletes face. By doing so, they attended various meetings discussing leadership, emphasizing making a lasting impact on their school’s athletic department and those enrolled in the Cal Pac and NAIA. They met other representatives, participated in team activities, attended a speech by Admiral Copper, and worked closely with the commissioner to create plans and goals for each school. “Our goal at the university level is to represent student-athletes and work with administration to solve the issues that arise throughout the school year and implement lasting solutions,” said Nathan.

Out of all the sessions, the one topic that stood out to Nathan and Madison was mental health and how they can better support student-athletes by addressing their mental health needs. “This stood out the most because it was a universal problem across the schools represented at the summit. This is important to cover because of the extra stress added to athletes throughout their education and athletic careers,” shares Madison. Nathan added, “This topic was deemed as top priority in our council as each school’s athletics department has suffered from struggles arising from mental health.”

From what Madison and Nathan learned from the summit, they both will take action to create a SAC at PUC composed of members from each sport and meet throughout the year to resolve team and department issues and become leaders on our campus.

A Leap of Faith in Italy 

Natalia Gomez recently flew back to her hometown of Santa Barbara after spending most of her summer studying abroad at Villa Aurora in Italy. Applying through ACA (Adventist Colleges Abroad), she saw that she didn’t know anyone in the program but decided to take a leap of faith and go on this once-in-a-lifetime adventure before her senior year. By facing her fears, Natalia met amazing people on campus, learned Italian, explored new places, and indulged in delicious food every day. From her “HOT!, inspiring, and yummy” time in Italy, Natalia couldn’t have asked for a better study abroad experience.

How has your time in Italy been? 

My time in Italy has been great! I’ve been able to visit and explore a new Italian city every week as well as really familiarize myself with Florence. It’s pretty exciting to be living in Florence and find my favorite spots to study or get gelato. I have definitely indulged and gotten gelato almost every day I’ve been here. School in Italy is not structured the same as back home, and learning a new language comes with its challenges, but it has been a lot of fun learning a new language and immersing yourself in the culture. I’d definitely say that I’ve gotten the most practice with speaking in Italian through talking with salespeople or waiters at restaurants. I didn’t always understand what they were saying at first or even what I was saying, but it made for some funny moments, and after a few weeks, I got the hang of it. I’m definitely not fluent, but I’ve really enjoyed being able to speak with locals in Italian as best as I can. 

What inspired you to study in Italy?

I have to be honest, the foodie in me is what really determined me to study in Italy. I love pasta, and I love ice cream, and the thought of having the best of the best in Italy, on a regular basis? Sold! But of course, I also thought it would be really exciting to make new friends from all over the world. I really enjoyed going on an ADRA missions trip a few years back, and I made incredible friendships from that experience, and I was also hoping the same would come out of studying abroad! I actually took a really big leap of faith and decided to go abroad alone, without knowing anyone else in the program. And after my time here, I honestly would recommend going even if you don’t know anyone. 

Describe your typical day studying abroad.

My typical day abroad: I wake up around 7 a.m. to get ready for breakfast at 7:30 at the caf or a quick trip to a nearby cafe. Then I go to classes from 8:40-1:15, usually getting some snacks from the vending machines during class breaks. Once I’m out of classes, I run over to the caf for lunch to be in the front of the lunch line because lunch is the best meal of the day on campus! And after lunch, some friends and I take off to our favorite spots to do homework and study. Then we explore Florence or go shopping before dinner. If I don’t eat dinner in town, I go back to campus for dinner, but regardless- I will always go out with friends after dinner for gelato. Then it’s time for an ice-cold shower before bed, it’s so hot in the summer, that’s the only way to fall asleep peacefully. (keep in mind, I was in Italy during Europe’s record-breaking heat wave). I usually fall asleep around midnight. 

What have been your favorite things about studying abroad?

Surprisingly meeting new people has been my favorite thing! I’m actually a pretty shy person and studying in Italy without knowing anyone seemed scary at first. However, I’ve met amazing people while being here, from students to teachers and the volunteers who work on campus! I’ve had so much fun going out with everyone here that I’ve actually already made plans to travel and go out with some new friends after returning home! 

What will you miss the most about your time abroad? 

That’s tough, I miss so much! But I’d have to say exploring Florence in the afternoons after school was the best time. Practicing our Italian, finding new places, trying new foods – just adventuring without a plan was so fun! Some of the funniest memories came from us just taking advantage of our time and exploring. Was there an afternoon where at one point there were dark clouds and lightning off in the distance? Yes. Did we have jackets or umbrellas? Nope. Did we get caught in a rainstorm and end up running in the rain all over the city? Yes, we did, and it was one of the funniest nights ever. Truly just do it all!

Recommend an Italian dish or restaurant. 

Medici’s has the best gelato and this has been confirmed by multiple locals! I went here almost every day of the summer- all the flavors are amazing! Although I’d have to say that Stracciatella is my favorite flavor of gelato, and this was the best place to get it. Everywhere else I went did not compare.

What would you say to someone who is interested in ACA?

Just go for it! Don’t let any of your fears or worries stop you from having once-in-a-lifetime experiences. It sounds so cheesy, but when else will you have the opportunity to be 18-22 ish running around a foreign city with friends, trying new foods, seeing beautiful landscapes, and learning about another culture? It’s probably one of the last times you’ll have a summer camp type of experience before you graduate and start working.

Connect Ministries: Serving Churches & Academies Around The World

Connect Ministries is one of PUC’s worship outreach ministries. Ran by the enrollment and marketing department, Lewis Govea is in charge of Connect Ministries- and has been involved since 2017, serving at different academies, camp meetings around California, and reaching out to churches to worship with. Besides making it a habit of attending camp meetings and doing vespers for local academies, they have also traveled as far as Arlington, TX., and Boston, MA. to worship with churches.

Lewis kindly answered some questions for us to learn more about Connect and how you, your church, and academies can get involved.

Tell us about Connect Ministries. 

I think George Tuyu, the PUC church’s current youth pastor, was a large proponent of its inception when he was a PUC student. It was a way for students to bring the banner of PUC to the local churches and academies and help them out with various parts of the service. It currently still operates as primarily a worship ministry. The people that are involved change year to year, but it has always been musicians across campus bringing PUC’s worship to local churches and schools, and sometimes not so local places.

What is your role with Connect Ministries? 

I started getting involved with Connect Ministries back in 2017. I was a freshman, and we went to do vespers at Rio Lindo Academy. I have done a number of things with Connect since then, including spending a week and a half at Redwood Campmeeting in 2019. Now I’m an enrollment counselor and am in charge of the entire ministry, which includes me reaching out to churches and organizing trips.

What plans do you have for Connect next school year? 

The plan for next year is to reinvigorate the program. The goal is to make sure our local churches and schools know they can call on Connect Ministries for a worship experience.

How has this ministry impacted you? 

This ministry is the first PUC ministry I got involved in. It inspired me to reimagine my view of worship and ministry altogether, and challenged me to think bigger and better all the time. These aren’t just productions, they’re worship experiences, and now I am called to lead it.

PUC admissions counselors Pauline Cidro (left) and Lewis Govea (right) with the Connect Ministries team.

What is your favorite thing about being a part of Connect Ministries? 

Being able to guide my student leaders when we are called somewhere. I love making music myself, and I enjoy the challenge of producing something high quality and heartfelt.

How can students get involved with Connect Ministries? 

Anyone interested in being a part of Connect Ministries or who is interested in having us visit their school or church just needs to email connectministries@puc.edu

Faces of PUC: Nyllah Safotu

Coming all the way from Kapolei, Hawaii, is Nyllah Safotu. She finished her first year of college majoring in biology pre-med and wants to work in secondary education or help endangered animals. Nyllah chose to attend PUC because she wanted to go to an Adventist institution where the environment could safely help her grow physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. We’re very pleased to have Nyllah as a part of our Pioneers family. 

What is your dream job?

I don’t quite have a specific dream job, but I’m thinking about working in either secondary education or to help endangered animals.

How does that compare to what you wanted to be when you were young?

I’d say it’s a little different. My dream was to be a surgeon and find cures for diseases. I would still like a job that helps people but also the animals and the environment.  

What is your favorite thing about being a part of the Pioneers family?

My favorite thing is how warm and kind people have been here. I’ve been able to make so many great connections and friends with people who I can call family. Everyone has been super helpful with adjusting to college life and I just appreciate being in such a loving community.

Where is your favorite place in the world?

Singapore

If you had to be trapped in a movie for a day, what movie would you choose?

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

What is something you’re passionate about?

I’m really passionate about music, specifically listening to it. I love all kinds of genres and always enjoy hearing unique styles from different artists.

Recommend a place to go in the Bay Area on a weekend

Golden Gate Park is such a beautiful place to enjoy nature, art, and the company of the people you’re with all in one place.

Come Join the Fun at PUC 

At PUC, students have many ways to get involved with campus life. Through clubs, worship services, outreaches, and other activities and programs, there is always something going on for students to take a break from their studies, de-stress, and have fun. Here are some ways you or your teenager can participate at PUC. 

Clubs 

Our students are passionate about their cultures, interests, and majors, which is why PUC has over 30 clubs. From the beginning of the school year- till the end, clubs host events, activities, and services students can attend and enjoy. You can also start your own club if you want to! 

Student Association 

The Student Association officers are dedicated to making student life the best it can possibly be. They throw a variety of events on campus and within Napa Valley, such as movie nights, food trucks, carnivals, and vespers. When you come to PUC, you can expect a lot of exciting things to happen.

Worship Services

One of the best things about coming to PUC is being a part of a faith-driven community. There are weekly vespers and student-led worships, small group Bible studies, and church services. We know everyone worships in different ways, which is why we encourage our students to gather their friends and worship together in the ways they prefer.  

Outreaches 

There are student-led outreaches during the week and weekend for students to help around the community. Our Campus Ministries team also takes students around the Bay Area during the weekends for a chance to minister to others. 

Mission Trips 

Every year our campus ministries team plans short and long-term mission trips for students to get the opportunity to serve in other countries. In the past, our students have gone to Fiji, Brazil, and most recently Kenya. Our students always come back having a great, life-changing experience.

Ensemble

Bring your musical gifts to PUC! Students can join the orchestra, wind ensemble, and touring choir. Our music instructors have directed and toured throughout Asia, Europe, and other parts of the world, and also performed in Carnegie Hall. We are blessed with skilled music teachers who adore all types of genres and enrich the lives of our students to grow as performers. 

Intramurals

Intramurals are one of the most popular ways students join in on the fun at PUC. More than half of our student body participates in intramural sports each quarter, like football, basketball, soccer, and volleyball. 

Athletics

If you want to continue your athletic talents in college, join the PUC Pioneers! Our athletics department offers- basketball, cross country, soccer, and volleyball teams for women and men. The coaching staff takes pride in building a talented, supportive team on and off the court; in representing PUC throughout California and other states. They make sure that student-athletes put school first and show good character and leadership.

PUC students, faculty, and organizations are always finding ways to make student life more fun and enjoyable for all. We hope you come to PUC to join in on the fun!

PUC’s History Club: Mixing Learning & Fun

Isai J. Martinez recently finished his junior year majoring in History with European Emphasis and minoring in Film and Television, and was this year’s History Club president. The History Club used to be department-based and usually included history and pre-law majors- but Isai and the rest of the club officers wanted to change that by opening up the club more to be an event-based club with fun events throughout the year.

As president, his role was to network with others and brainstorm with his team to bring amazing events and projects to the club. To learn more about the history club, Isai answered some questions for us. 

What made you decide to become the president of the club? 

This year, I accepted the post to be the president of the history club because, during my freshman year, the president of that year wanted to expand the club more. However, due to Covid-19, we were forced to cease any idea of it. I was very lucky to be chosen to take over the club and be able to present new ideas.

What were your goals for the History Club this year? 

We want to expand alongside the Pre-Law Society in order to bring more recognition to the club and establish new traditions that the History Club can be leading for a long time.

What are some exciting activities or events you have planned? 

My favorite event that we have planned is Foreign Film Night. We will be choosing films from around the world like a Japanese Studio Ghibli film, a Zombie-Historical Korean film, a Nollywood film, or a Mexican film from the ’60s. We will pick two movies and the students will be able to decide over a vote on Instagram what movie they will like to watch that movie night. 

Other events include a surprise trip during spring quarter and a special project that everyone (in-club or no club) can be involved in and we will announce that more information later. 

What is your favorite part about being in the History Club?

Honestly, my favorite part has been getting to know the rest of the history majors and working really well with the History professors. They don’t bite! They are the most approachable and charismatic group of people I have met. 

Convince me to join the History Club in five sentences. 

This year, the History Club is opening up more to become a bigger and more diverse group of people. We want people to learn and appreciate history and what better way than watching movies from around the world with your friends. We have so many things planned for those who want to be super involved and for those who want to casually participate. The History Club is open to all. We want you to know that History Club is there to have fun and that’s all!! 

Follow them on Instagram and we hope you join the History Club next year!

Faces of PUC: Christianne Andrianarijaona

This week’s Faces of PUC is Angwin local, Christianne Andrianarijaona. She is a third year biochemistry major who wants to pursue dentistry and is passionate about singing. We are blessed to have a sweet student like Christianne a part of our Pioneers family. 

What is your dream job? 

My dream would be something challenging, but one that still gives me peace in mind because of the good hours and organized schedule. That’s why I would want to go into dentistry. I know the patients and colleagues I’d meet along the way would be life-changing.

How does that compare to what you wanted to be when you were young? 

Haha, when I was younger, I wanted to be a professional singer, something very close to Tori Kelly or Beyonce. I have pretty bad stage fright and nerves, so I’ve gone against pursuing that.  But I must say that compared to now, I had a much more creative and open mindset. As a college student, I overthink often and I tend to go overboard with my creative thoughts, which ends up being overwhelming.

What is your favorite thing about being a part of the Pioneers family? 

PUC is a very close-knit, small family meaning that you’ll find long-lasting friends and be able to see God through people. That’s what I like most about the Pioneers family. Everybody knows everybody.

Where is your favorite place in the world? 

My favorite place in the world would either be anywhere quiet and spacious, whether it be outdoors, a museum, library, Chan Shun, or wherever my family is.

If you had to be trapped in a movie for a day, what movie would you choose?

If I had to be trapped in a movie for a day, one of the movies I would choose would be Mrs. Doubtfire. Just watching the plotting, setting, and revealing unfold would be so entertaining. 

What is something you’re passionate about? 

I am passionate about singing, though I haven’t been pursuing as much as I wish. But it’s something that I love doing and am decently confident with.

Recommend a place to go in the Bay Area on a weekend.

Hmm, I would say Round One in San Jose. It’s a cute little arcade with bowling allies and karaoke rooms. The only thing that’s not very affordable is the ride there and back, but that’s Bay Area for you.