UC Berkeley Web Feature
Wisdom of the sages
BERKELEY – Figuring that those who had just capped their four (or more) years of higher education with a diploma were the best people to offer advice on capitalizing on the Berkeley experience, we asked graduates of the class of 2005 to share a bit of their hard-earned wisdom as they waited eagerly for Commencement Convocation last May. What follows is what they wished they had known back when they were wet-behind-the-ears freshmen.
|"Four years are going to go by before you know it. Take advantage of every opportunity. Don't wait to get involved. Get to know your professors and get to know your fellow students."
-Lauren Biesbroeck, Molecular & Cell Biology, Mesa, AZ
|"Join some student organizations and be very active; take a leadership position. And make lots of friends before you graduate."
-Chae Lee, Economics, Seoul, South Korea
|"Don't get caught up in the stress of classes; get done early and leave time to meet people and have fun at Berkeley."
-Jake Adams, Mechanical Engineering, Ventura, CA
|"Take full advantage of all Berkeley has to offer. Take anything you are really interested in. Berkeley is a gold mine of opportunities to pursue."
-Sajidah Wahdy, Molecular and Cell Biology, Sunnyvale, CA
|"Major in something you have a passion for, no matter the advice you receive, even from family members. Balance your extracurricular work with school. Lots of what you learn will come from outside the classroom. Berkeley has great organizations so take advantage of them."
-Natasha Green, Political Science, Sacramento, CA
|"When you win the Big Game and storm the field, watch out for the guys carrying the goal posts."
-Nancy Muff, Classics and Spanish, Auburn, CA
|"Make sure you find friends and stick with them. It's too easy to fall through the cracks. Also, don't stay up late."
-Elliot Svensson, Mechanical Engineering, Concord, CA
|"Don't rush. Take your time to figure out what you really want to do."
-Reshma Nichani, Business, Irvine, CA
|"Take advantage of resources like the Career Center early on, so you have more options when it comes to grad school or a career."
-Litz Huang, Molecular & Cell Biology and Economics, Maple Glen, PA
|"Come to class every single time. Be there and be focused. Ask questions."
-David Aminzadeh, Business and Statistics, Sugar Land, TX
|"Take DeCal classes, especially Meditation. DeCal teaches you more than you can learn in a book."
Jessica Vernaglia, Political Science, Laguna Niguel, CA
|"Think of yourself first. Make yourself happy and academic success will follow. It is way too competitive here."
-Melissa McPherson, Art History, Kingsburg, CA
|"Take as many different types of courses as you can. Research through the grapevine and find out who are the dynamic professors. And then take their courses."
-Davin Widgerow, Political Science, Johannesburg, South Africa
|"You don't have to know what you are going to do with your life when you are a freshman. Look at all the resources here and take advantage of them and when you do, a path to your future will open up for you."
-Carrie Young, American Studies '05, from San Jose
Read the responses to previous Point of View questions