A School Year in Reflection

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Elijah Root-Sanchez
Staff Writer

Although the 2017-2018 school year at UCSB was very stressful and difficult for me to handle at times, I would consider it a success.

Towards the end of fall quarter, it was immediately apparent that the year was going to be unusual because of the Thomas Fire. It was a difficult time for students, many of whom breathed in ash on their way to class.

Many students felt that the administration did not handle the situation well and made dead week even more stressful than usual. When finals were eventually postponed, many were overjoyed. Personally, though, I believe that all it did was postpone the inevitable, essentially making the final week of winter break another dead week.

After finals were over, a shortened winter quarter began, and it was clear that nobody was prepared for it. Many professors had to cut important lectures because there wasn’t enough time to cover it all, yet still expected students to know the material. At the time I was taking Italian 1. Learning another language is difficult enough at the pace of a normal quarter, but the nine week quarter made it significantly more difficult.

I am now halfway done with college, which is a fact that has recently started to sink in. I am entering my third year of college, and it has become apparent to me that the real world will soon be here, and I still feel so unprepared.

However, the reality of my impending graduation has given me an unprecedented drive to find out who I am going to be after I leave UCSB. I feel confident in the decisions that I have made in the last couple months, but it can still feel daunting at times.

If I could have done anything different this year, I would’ve taken advantage of on-campus resources sooner. We have excellent advisors here in CAPS and CARE, and I did not use them until recently. Many people on campus try to go through their problems alone, but there is no shame in receiving help.

Also, I am a big fan of live performances. Whether it be a play or a concert, I love live performances, and I did not realize how many were held at UCSB. I hope to attend more of these next year because the few that I did attend were very entertaining.

Up until this point, I hadn’t been sure of what career to pursue after college. This year, I decided to really find out what I wanted to do with my life, and joining The Bottom Line was a turning point in my college career. It finally allowed me to pursue my passions for writing, politics, and the arts simultaneously, and helped me realize that journalism was the right path right for me. Until this year, I didn’t have a clear direction in life, but now I am confident for the first time that I know what I hope to accomplish in the future.

I was also forced to get a job this year, so I decided to work as a Desk Attendant in San Rafael Hall. This job has been the highlight of my year. I have developed so many close bonds with the other DAs and RAs, and I have gained many skills that I can use in my future jobs.

Luckily, It also set me up for my job next year as a Resident Assistant. We truly became a family at San Rafael Hall, and I am endlessly grateful for the impact they had on my second year.

All in all, the biggest highlight of my second year at UCSB has certainly been all of the relationships that I have developed this year. Whether it be with my coworkers, classmates, or roommates, each individual that I have met this year has made an impact on me and helped me develop as a person.

Looking forward to next year, I hope to continue to develop my personal relationships and participate in many new experiences. Even though this year has been extremely stressful, it truly has been a fantastic year, and I am excited for the coming fall.