Like many UCB student parents, the miraculous birth of my son Miles inspired my prosperous return to academia. Honestly? I got in everywhere I applied. But knew Berkeley was right for me based on the sage advice of my mentors at Saddleback College.
The initial online support I received from many student parents and community members attributed to me submitting my SIR to CAL. The dream they sold based off their personal experiences swayed me and I wouldn’t change a thing. Was all of it true? No. However I didn’t set outrageous expectations based on the council of strangers. I knew that I had the tenacity, life experience and outgoing personality to succeed wherever I went.
My truth is, I’ve always wanted to live in the Bay Area and emerge myself into land of the NGO’s, where a diverse culturally rich community actually co-exists. Ralph Waldo Emerson said “What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us.”
As a single-mother and transfer student I will warn you that this will be the most challenging experience you have ever faced. Time will fly and whatever propelled you to come here will shift as you realize what your priorities truly are. Family first. Then GPA. All while earning leadership positions, leading by positive example, working, applying for scholarships, internships and research positions, navigating financial aid, budget appeals, public transportation, new campus & neighborhood, security challenges and much, much more if you qualify for County support. They will remind you to breathe and recommend you work out to manage the stress. But the one thing they won’t tell you is to work in. Remember where you came from. Remind yourself that you are enough and that you belong here as you create a legacy for you and your family. Listen to many, but follow your intuition. We are the best and the brightest at the number one public University in the world, however look at the state of our world today. We have some important teamwork ahead of us and maybe, just maybe if we learn to navigate the bureaucracy here while contributing to UCB organizations such as SPARR, the SPC, and the VRA we will be able to hold our heads high and leave as alumni that left a better space than we came into, for the future of our little bears. Peace.