This past weekend I looked through the course catalog for Winter Quarter and found the remaining classes in my major and minor that I have to take to graduate. As I did this I noticed a few classes that I want to take for my own benefit but have never enrolled in. Then I thought about how busy I will be in the next few months and decided that I shouldn’t bury myself with extra classes.
I am going to graduate in four years but I know that a few years from now I might regret never having taken a first aid class or a few physical activities classes. Everybody knows about senioritis but I’m now discovering a near-graduation form of mid-life crisis. For those of you who still have more time left to indulge yourself in the extras that college has to offer, I encourage you to do everything you want while you are here without putting them off by telling yourself that you can do it next year.
This advice definitely applies more to life outside of class. When 4,000 students crowd into the Thunderdome for a basketball game, it means that 13,000 students are somewhere else. I’m sure a lot of those people don’t care for basketball but there is a large number who just don’t get a schedule or get distracted by other things.
There are hundreds of things to do while at UCSB and most of them aren’t on Del Playa. Just to be clear, I am not trying to tell anybody what they should or shouldn’t do with their time. I am telling you to explore your options and add some extra entertainment to your routine. These few years are the best opportunity you will have to talk to strangers or to make a scene in public for no apparent reason.
I’m going to tell my kids about the road trips I went on with the Gaucho Locos and how my roommates and neighbors got together to play a baseball game or paintball on a spur-of-the-moment idea. I’ll leave out stories about house parties and the drinking involved in college life (at least until they are older). I won’t share tales of how I read for classes or stayed up late writing papers. The highlights and memories are going to be from the extra things that I took part in.
There are many sources to find out about events taking place both on and around campus. The Nexus advertisements and back page listings on Mondays are a good start. Walking around campus you can always find groups by the UCen and in the Arbor promoting themselves. The Associated Students and Office of Student Life buildings are full of information about groups that you might enjoy. Pay attention to the posters on the overpasses and to the kiosks and you will learn about a lot of things. Most of the things you will hear about probably won’t interest you, but I guarantee that you’ll be grateful when the right one comes along.
So if you currently spend a lot of time surfing the Internet, watching TV, drinking or even daydreaming, take this as a warning that you might eventually regret the things that you missed. Maybe you won’t regret anything. Just pay attention to how you are spending your time and think about how you would prefer to spend your time and then do what you want to do (try not to get arrested either).
Speaking of things to do, there is an open forum on Wednesday from 4-6 to discuss the plans for putting housing on Storke fields. This will take place in the GSA lounge in the AS/GSA building next to Corwin Pavilion. All students, staff and community members are welcome to come and ask questions of the idiots who are responsible for the plans. I call them idiots because I think they are screwing up royally. They are actually smart people making bad decisions. Please join me in questioning the decision-making ability of the people that get to make decisions about the future of our campus. You don’t get too many opportunities to do things like this so, following my own advice, I’m going to be there and I’m going to make it as enjoyable as possible.
Brian Hampton is the Associated Students president.