For the longest time, my father cut my hair growing up. My two younger brothers and I never went to a barber shop to get the job done. And this job is complicated to say the least. Around 16 or 17, my father just didn’t have the same precision as before and my hair was just too difficult to cut. Soon after, my father simply retired, if you will, from cutting my hair and my brother’s as well. I was confident that if my father could cut my hair, anyone else with experience could do it just as well. Read more
Posts tagged ‘School’
I don’t visit the Multicultural Center, Casa Latina or the Diversity and Multicultural Student Services offices as much as I used to. But in the past few weeks, I have been stopping by, and I’ve noticed an increase in the number of Latino and students of color using these resources. The number of programs and events has grown just as well. However, as I visited each place, I felt like an outsider to some degree.
When Casa Latina opened, I believed it would develop community among students. When I was part of that growing community a couple years ago, I could see small but solid steps towards the needs of the students. However, I should point out that I lived on campus at that time. I moved to Oregon City this past summer. Since then, I have been out of what is going on, who is new to the community, how are the needs of the students being addressed and ultimately why must this work continue?
Perhaps, I have distanced myself too much without even knowing. However, I have given much thought as to why I or these places feel different. It seems that these places have become over the years fast paced, overloaded with work, expectations have risen higher, and yet moral obligation and duty is still present among these departments that are undoubtedly understaffed and under supported. My feelings I believe stem from my concerns for the students.
As a student, I feel empowered when I can connect deeply and grow from a program or from an individual. What concerns me is being regarded as just a number rather than a person. It seems that when a department is understaffed, the meaning of their work shifts and becomes more quantitative than qualitative. Students cannot afford to be seen as a number. I hope that this does not unfold within these offices. They are too vital and necessary for the growth and education for students of color and their communities.
Winter Break came and went, and for some of us it brought change moving into new apartments, getting pets, graduating from school, or passing or failing classes. For me, it was meeting someone new. This brings with it a challenge of balancing school and personal life – something which is always difficult for me.
I had recently given up on dating, having had a string of bad luck with flaky guys or just plain weird fellas. But it seems the old proverb about when you stop looking, you find what you are looking for, seems to be true. We even met in the weirdest and best possible way: through a friend, due to a flat tire of all things. For me, the chance encounter after being frustrated for so long has been a breath of fresh air, and one I feel I am ready to embrace.
Winter term arrived and brought with it a possibility of love! I am excited, and eager to take the steps with my guy. Next up, another date… My question for you readers out there: how do you balance school life, work, and your special someone?
I have lived on campus for three years, and in three different locations. Living in the city was a drastic change for me. I grew up in a rural area where I had no neighbors, surrounded instead by acres of orchards. While living in the city brought me new experiences, it was expensive and at times lonesome for me.
I have had a total of seven male roommates, have lived alone, and at one point, I lived with five roommates. One can just imagine how things went living in a place with five guys. We were all single, young, and a bit naive Yet, throwing parties, going out, hanging out as a group, and goofing around just wasn’t for me. At the end of the day, I would always feel alone or being left out of something meaningful.
My mornings, evenings, and my life are now spent with my new family. I moved in with my girlfriend this past summer into her sister’s house in Oregon City. It’s a full house; there are two cats, two dogs, her husband, her sister in law, and her 2 year old son who, I like to say, is the king of the house. It’s a great welcoming and friendly environment. I often hear the little boy call out everyone’s name from across the house. I get up every weekday at 7 to get ready for my day and help my girlfriend get prepared as well. I see the cats walking back and forth, and I hear the dogs in the yard barking for attention.
At 22, I love my new home, my girlfriend, my new family, and myself. I have left behind my single, lonesome, and confused life. And I wouldn’t want it any other way.
Do you ever sit in class, and feel like you’re the one person that has no clue what’s going on? I seem to have already found myself in this dilemma this term. It’s now the second week of the term, and I’d say that I’ve already passed my previous record of stress-to-week-of-term ratio. On the second day of classes, I was assigned upwards of 200 pages to read before the end of the week. Granted, I signed myself up for these three 400+ level courses and one 300+ level course, but that still doesn’t mean that I’m not overwhelmed by this initial work load. This past week has left me feeling like this guy from the movie Better Off Dead: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmdVqCNev6Q
I guess it’s time to hit the books!
Money makes the world go round, and even more so when I am waiting for my money to kick in. Like most students at Portland State, I have to apply to FASFA every academic year I am enrolled in. and while the deadline was months ago, I am still waiting to see how much I will be offered the upcoming year. Why? There is this step called “verification” I have been told that students are selected randomly to take this extra step in applying for financial aid. It essentially verifies that all the information that is provided is true.
I have been selected not once, not twice, but three times. At this point, it is no longer random in my opinion. Most students by now know their financial package for this fall term, I do not. My parents always file taxes in April and have the documents to prove it. Not only do I need to fill out extra paperwork, but I also have to turn in a copy of my parent’s taxes. However, there is a new system or process to being verified. PSU is now asking to turn a “tax transcript” instead. While this may be easy, it is complicated for me.
My parents don’t speak English, and thus any financial step or information they need to provide, an interpreter has to be present. Like any student with who has immigrant parents, this is part of our lives. This not only prolongs my financial aid distribution, but also holds me back from planning and estimating my living and school expenses.