Connection Cafe - Best Wishes From Summer Barista Lauren!

August 23, 2014

Dear friends,

This is my very last written blog post to you all. I am passing on the torch of being a Love Cafe barista to new, eager writers. This has truly been such an incredible experience and I am so grateful. I thought I found my niche already at UC Berkeley; however, after researching the various organizations that UC Berkeley has to offer, I realized that I have tasted only a sliver of all the amazing opportunities offered at this top university. You can sure bet that I will be signing up for new things during my last few years at UC Berkeley. Now, with only a few days left of summer before we start this chapter in our lives, I thought I would pass on a few words of wisdom to you all.

By now, I am sure you are tired of me saying this; however, I am going to say it one last time. College is a crucial and memorable part of your life. It is crucial in that your time at UC Berkeley as an undergrad will determine where you end up in the future. Therefore, make smart decisions. Despite this, the biggest mistake you can make is overworking yourself - you must balance your academic career with activities you are passionate about. You must take care of yourself, both physically and mentally. College is also crucial because this is the time that will shape you into the individual you will become in the future. You will mature, grow up, and discover characteristics about yourself that you were not aware of before. You will have highs, and you will have lows. Just remember: you are not alone. You were selected from a rigorous pool of applicants, and UC Berkeley saw something in you that made you special and unique. Your new community of UC Berkeley students is full of different stories, yet will be more similar to you than any previous community you were a part of. Take advantage of this! You will learn from your community and you will find people with similar interests and goals as yourself. I always found college to be “a clean slate.” This is your opportunity to become the person you’ve always wanted.

College will be some of the most memorable years of your life. However, how you look back on it will be solely up to you. I know adults who look back at their college experience as their “golden years,” and other adults who look back at their college experience as their “most dreaded years.” Again, how you choose to spend your time at UC Berkeley will determine how you look back at this important chapter in your life. Yes, I am sure that all of you are more academically capable than the average human, and I am sure that you are all very studious, hardworking individuals. However, as I said above, you do not want to look back at your college experience as a time of nothing but studying, exams, and stress. Sign up for things you are passionate about! Try that art class you have always wanted to take. Get involved in that sport that you have always been eager to play. Learn that skill that you have always been wanting to acquire. You are fortunate enough to be surrounded by all these amazing extra curricular activities that UC Berkeley has to offer, some that you will only be able to experience here. Let your activities help you get through these tough years at UC Berkeley, and let the friends you meet through these activities help lead you to success. Make wonderful memories and create unforgettable stories during your time as undergraduate student. Remember, you will look back at your college years, more clearly than your high school years, middle school years, and adolescent years. But, how you spend your time at UC Berkeley will determine how you look back at these unforgettable years of your life. Don’t waste it.

Now, I would like to finish my words of wisdom to you all with the phrase, #CalBearsSayHi. I hope that I have met my goal this summer by helping you all feel more at ease about starting this exciting new chapter in your life. However, if I really want to call this summer a success, I am going to need your help. I adore the Maya Angelou quote: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” A simple hello could mean a great deal to someone. To create a more friendly and neighborly environment at UC Berkeley, I need you all to start by doing this small, yet crucial gesture upon your arrival: just say hi.

So Cal Bears, it is time for me to say good bye to you all. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity. I wish you all the best of luck, and I hope I helped make your Cal experience everything you dreamed of.

Your friend, Lauren