Tag Archives: campus

Chrissy’s Declassified Midterm Survival Guide

21 Oct

It’s that time of the semester: when all-nighters are a must, the libraries are packed, and anyone hoping to survive can be found with notes in their hands. That’s right, it’s midterms!

Midterm 1

For those just starting out, midterms can be a frightening thing, but with these tips you should be able to get through them without too much trouble.


This is honestly the most important thing a student can do. Not only does your brain get a chance to rest and sort all the information you are going over, it also keeps you healthy. While you sleep your body rejuvenates itself. Staying healthy during this time of year is difficult enough without adding this obstacle, and you need to be healthy for your midterms!

Midterm 6

2) Start studying in advance

This is one tip I have trouble with, but it really does work. You know at the beginning of the semester when your midterms will be, so be sure to start studying at least two weeks in advance. I know that you won’t have all the content of the class by then, but if you start refreshing yourself on the old content earlier, then it you will only have to refresh yourself on the new content closer to the exam!

Midterm 2

3) Drink lots of water

Water is very important especially in Arizona. Drinking lots of water will not only keep you hydrated, but it will also help with your attentiveness in class. Try replacing one of your coffees a day with a bottle of water, you’d be amazed by the difference.

Midterm 4

4) Don’t stress out

I know that this seems a bit hard, but honestly by stressing yourself out over midterms you are really psyching yourself out of doing well. This is not to say that you shouldn’t take midterms seriously, but stressing out will only take time away from studying. Be sure to take breaks and let yourself breathe.

Midterm 3

Good luck on all of your midterms!

Midterm 5


I’ve Got Friends in Low Places

7 Aug

From my high school, only two other people came to the U of A. One was in my grade level, and the other was one year older than me. If you have read the first week experience blog, you probably learned that I was miserable my first week here. Rachel, the girl that was a year older than me, invited me to the first football game. Not having anyone else to go with, I agreed to go with her. That afternoon we met in the Student Union to grab something to eat before heading to the stadium.

As soon as I met up with her I could tell she was not the least bit interested in hanging out with me. She informed me that her other friends were going to meet up with us so we could all go to the game together. Once we were done eating we began walking to the stadium. We swiped our CatCards in to get into the game, and we waited by the concession stands for Rachel’s friends. After about twenty minutes or so of waiting, a girl who lived in my dorm named Mackenzie spotted me asked what I was doing and if I needed people to sit with. A little embarrassed I told her that I was with a girl from my high school, and that I was fine. Even though I felt completely uncomfortable. Mackenzie then gave me her cell phone number and told me if I changed my mind to call her and I could sit with her.

I had seen Mackenzie before in the hallway of my dorm, but I thought she was very different from me and I never tried to engage in conversations with her. In the meantime, after about an hour of waiting and the game already starting Rachel told me she would be right back after she went to the bathroom. After a few minutes I realized Rachel was not coming back. She had ditched me and left me standing there all alone.

All week I had been super sad and just looking for a reason to drop out and move back to my hometown. I had contemplated crying and leaving, but I got it together and made a courageous move to call Mackenzie. When I called her she met me at the bottom of the ZonaZoo section and took me up to where she was sitting with other girls from my dorm. For someone I never saw myself being friends with, we had an awful lot in common.

Before I knew it she became one of my best friends. The next day we were going to get our nails done, and weeks later we were taking road trips to Phoenix together. All semester we were inseparable, doing something together everyday from dinner dates, eyebrow waxes, shopping, Life in Color, or just watching movies together in the dorm.

I will always be thankful that Mackenzie saved me at that horrific football game. And I am thankful I made such a good friend to help me survive my first semester of college. My best advice to all of you is to be open to all kinds of people. Do not judge anyone or think you have nothing in common with someone until you get to know them – just go out there and make friends!


Our First Week

7 Aug

Now, first off let me say that we all know the nerve-racking and butterfly tingly feeling we get in our stomachs when we are about to start off our first day. The first day and week of anything is always scary from preschool, to kindergarten, middle school, high school, college, and a job, but the goal is to get through it with the most positive attitude possible. There have been many milestones to overcome from preschool to high school, and everything in between. We have had our great firsts and our bad firsts, but we should never fail to learn from each experience. I must admit the move to college is a HUGE chapter in your life. You are taking a BIG STEP into adulthood. Having said that, I wish you all the best of luck in college and hope you will take advantage of as many opportunities you can!

My first week at the U of A was honestly a blur. I attended everything, from historically black Greek events and workshops, Black Student Union and African Student Association events, to my academic workshops, to Dorm Hall events, applying for jobs/training, unpacking, etc. but most of all I remember my first week consisted of trying to figure out where all of my classes were located. It was a STRUGGLE. But that’s because, I’m not going to lie to you, but I know I could have been a lot more prepared. Coming from Africa (I literally flew in FOUR days prior to moving in), I was culturally shocked by Arizona and my new “home” so I definitely could summarize my my first day, week and month as trying to get the drift of things and how they worked here at the University of Arizona.

My first week of school was the worst. Before coming to the U of A, I never thought I would get homesick. I had traveled before for weeks at a time without seeing my parents and I had never had any issues. I assumed coming to the U of A I would be just fine. After a week of Bear Down Camp, I was not having it. I was homesick beyond belief and I was ready to drop out of school and move back home. The second week of school was much different for me, though! I got my first job at Forever 21 and joined a student group at the Newman Center. Each day became a little easier. After three weeks or so, I loved being on campus. If you are feeling homesick, know you are never alone. I thought I was the only one missing my family and friends from my hometown. Once I started talking to other people in my dorm, I found out that a lot of others felt how I felt. Don’t be embarrassed if you are homesick – it is common!

My first experience in college was attending New Start, which is a summer program that started just a few weeks after I graduated high school (so it’s very similar to BDSB). It was super chill because we were all new students who wanted to make friends, hang out, and have fun! Of course there were classes and all. But as an incoming freshman, I didn’t feel that they were the priority. There were so many cool events planned and from there I made a group of friends that I could hang out with. This was perfect because I did not know many people coming to the U of A. When I started in the fall, I already had a bunch of friends that I could hang out with during my free time. This definitely made my transition into college much smoother.

Hundreds of students swarming the grass of the mall like ants, the Arizona sun beating onto my sweaty forehead, and a warm Arizona breeze across my face as I searched for my English 101 class at 9 o’clock in the morning – this is what stands out to me as I think back to  my first day of college at the University of Arizona. Searching for classes was the least of my concerns compared to the my first experience in a college lecture with enough seats to fit the graduating class of my high school. It was a huge transition but an amazing experience. Classes weren’t as bad as I thought they would be, the campus wasn’t as confusing as I assumed, and students were more friendly than I expected. I met so many people on the first day of school that I am so happy to call my close friends now. If there is any advice I would give to incoming freshmen, it would be to come prepared to learn, have fun, and Bear Down!!!!

Lupita De Los Santos:
The first thing I remember doing in college was playing with the Pride of Arizona, the University of Arizona’s own marching band. As a band geek, I thought my music days were over and the only way I could keep playing my saxophone was if I decided to minor in music. Well, the Pride proved me wrong. After playing with them at a session, I was hooked on joining the band. The week before school started, I hopped on a train at 4am from Yuma to Tucson all by myself and, for a whole week, I lived and breathed music 24/7.  The work was tiring and exhausting day in and day out. But once the week was over, I could not believe that I had survived band camp. When the first football game of the season came around, we blew the crowd away and it made them cheer even louder for our team to win. College if full of first and each experience can take you somewhere new and unexpected, so don’t be afraid to jump in!

Brenda Zarate:
My first week at the UA was a big blur as well. All I can remember was the amount of people swarming around the school like ants. There were so many people on my way to class, it was overwhelming. I didn’t help that I was lost trying to find my way to class. The only thing that did make that week better were the friends that I came across on my way to class. Doing New Start was probably one of the best decisions I ever made. It made me feel a little less scared and overwhelmed those few days of school.

Vanessa Galarza:
My first experience here on campus was move in day! Yayyy! As I arrived here, I was not too happy that I had decided to bring over my entire house with me. I was excited to see that all of the residence hall staff were ready to help me move in. I went to check in and as soon as I found my dorm, all my things were there waiting for me! I could not believe that they were so friendly and excited to have me. Through out the year, they stayed as friendly and helpful as that first day!

Volunteering in Tucson

30 Jul


One way you can make the most out of your college experience is to volunteer. Whichever field of study you are in, there are always volunteer opportunities available that suit your wants and needs. There are many benefits to volunteering: you can help the community at large, boost your resume, improve your interpersonal skills, etc. It can also be used to try new experiences that you never thought you would be able to. With these experience under your belt, you can find what you are really passionate about and want to pursue as a career. I know volunteering has been a crucial part of my college experience and has shaped me into who I am today.

Since I am a premed student and hoping to attend medical school, I volunteer at Banner University Medical Center. I am currently a volunteer transporter, so my role is to transport patients and various items around the hospital. This allows me to have first-hand experience working in a hospital. I get to work in the environment, have staff and patient interactions, observe patient treatments, and so much more. Not only am I getting great first-hand experiences, but I also get to meet medical staff and network for future purposes. Through my volunteer experience, I found that medicine is truly my passion and what I want to pursue. I know that I am comfortable in a hospital setting and that I would be suitable to work there in the future. Volunteering has helped me reaffirm my purpose in college and my love and motivation during my time here.

Now you know the many benefits of volunteering in college, the only question is how do you find volunteer opportunities. There are many opportunities to volunteer near and around the University of Arizona. You can find these opportunities in many ways such as: personal connections and networks, online research, email lists through your academic department, physical postings, etc. You can also check out the following website to find additional opportunities: http://volunteer.unitedwaytucson.org/. Here you can see the opportunities available around Tucson and filter down to your specific interests. Volunteering has done so much for my college experience and I hope it does the same for yours. Find what you’re passionate about and volunteer!


nam2 nam3

Uncommon Places on Campus

23 Jul

Getting used to the UA campus and college life in general can take some time. With a student population of over 42,000 students, campus can feel quite intimidating. It’s natural and comforting for many of us to find our niches and familiarize ourselves with common areas around the university. As a freshman, I quickly learned which buildings I would dread the most, but I also stumbled upon some uncommon places to study or have a class in.


On the second day of school, I attended a class in the Harvill building, but before I entered it I already felt dreaded. I disliked Harvill because at the time there was major construction on 2nd Street for the new streetcar. Depending on the day one would either have the ability to cross the street with ease, or would be stuck taking a major sidewalk detour to cross the street. After my first experience with Harvill, I avoided taking any classes in the building, however; this past year I finally attended some classes there. It felt silly that I disliking Harvill simply because of the construction, which mainly deterred me from taking any classes there. Now, that the construction of the streetcar is done Harvill is easier to access plus the large lecture hall in the building is less intimidating in comparison Centennial hall.

Centennial Hall

As an underclassman, I had many classes that were taught in large lecture halls like the one in Harvill, the Social Science building, but the one I dreaded the most was Centennial Hall. The hall itself is mainly used as a performance stage for a variety of other fine art displays. When I arrived early to my first class, MIS 111, there were already 50 students waiting outside in the lobby to enter the hall and another thirty outside the building waiting as well. Once we entered the room, everyone scrambled to find a seat and I remember my professor clearly stating, “No now is allowed to sit behind row ‘M’. We don’t need the entire hall to seat 500 students for this class.” After hearing this and taking a moment to look at the hall I truly felt like I was in a see of faces. Though I felt dismayed, I began to attend office hours, which helped my professor recognized me in class. While, the group projects in this class made it easier to focus my attention on one area of the hall.


It is very common for students to be familiar with buildings like Harvill or Centennial, but there are a few uncommon places on campus. The first of these is Babcock, simply because there is a Babcock Building and a Babcock Dormitory, which are next to one another. When I first arrived to the area I was confused as to why there were dorm rooms on one side and offices on the other side. With the help of a staff member, I was able to find my classroom and my instructor understood my tardiness since many of the other students also found it difficult to find the room. To this day the building still remains a mystery to me and most students would actually find this an uncommon building. However, this is building is common for students who are taking a critical language such as Hindi, Korean, or any other language that is not housed under college of humanities.

shantz buildingThe last uncommon place I stumbled upon my freshman year was the Shantz building, which is located next to the bike path across the Marley building. The building in general houses the Nutritional Science major under the College of Agricultural Life Sciences. This building is rather uncommon because it has three levels, but the first floor is only used for classrooms and the other two have restricted access to students. Like Babcock there are two sides to this building and it is a little confusing as to which side has the classrooms. The building sign is hard to spot and if you aren’t paying attention you can walk right past it without knowing it. Despite it being an uncommon place on campus, I liked having my math class here because on the second and third floor there was a bench that was always under the shade so it was perfect for me to get some air before class and finish any homework I had left to do.


10 ‘Need to Know’ Places on Campus

22 Jul


  1. Administration (“Admin”) Building: The Admin Building is located next to the Student Union and the Modern Languages Building. Because it is in the center of campus, it’s usually one of the easiest buildings to spot! Many of our top administrators have office in this building, but most students visit this building for the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid (OSFA). So if you have any financial aid questions, you will want to know where this building is!


  1. Bursar’s Office (“Bursar’s”): The Bursar’s Office is located in the University Services Building behind the CVS on University Boulevard and is adjacent to the Marriott Hotel. The Bursar’s office is where you can pay your tuition charges, book charges (if you used Bursar to buy your books), bookstore items, etc. Fees and charges are reflected on your UAccess account. Many students never need to visit in person (you can pay your Bursar’s balances online through UAccess), but it’s good to know just in case you need to pop by in person!

The Bursar’s Office is in the University Services Building, located next to the Marriott Hotel.

  1. The Student Union Memorial Center (“Union” or “SUMC”): The Union is the heart of the University of Arizona’s campus. It houses many of the food options (including Chick-fil-A, Panda Express, Burger King, Papa John’s, The Cellar, Cactus Grill, and many more options!) on campus. Additionally, this is where you can find resources for your meal plan, Career Services, The Associated Students of the University of Arizona (ASUA), and LGBTQ Affairs, among other resources. This is where you will also find the bookstore, Fast Copy & Design, the post office on campus, and a bank. The Union is very popular, crowded, and vibrant. It is the bustling “hot spot” on campus as students are able to eat, rest, study, and take care of personal errands.

Student Union Roundabout

  1. Highland Market (“Highland”): The Highland Market is a food market located on the corner of Sixth and Highland, next to El Portal and across from the Rec Center. It is the other “hot spot’ for students here at the University of Arizona as it is centrally located for students who live in residence halls along Highland, and most importantly because it is the only market/food place on campus that stays open late (until 2am during the academic year!). You can easily can grab late night snacks after a study session at the library.

k5 Highland Market is famous for their breakfast burritos!

  1. The Recreation Center (“The Rec”): Hands down, The Rec is the go to place before classes, in between classes, and after classes. It is the well-known gym for us Wildcats. The Rec offers many group classes such as yoga, zumba, kickboxing, etc., as well as personal training options. In addition, the Rec provides a pool, basketball courts, club sports, outdoor adventures,  intramural sports, and even a spa. It is always busy, so you will want to get there early to find your favorite equipment! While some of the extras are fee based, all Wildcats have access to The Rec Center’s equipment and pools.



  1. Old Main & The Mall: Did you know that Old Main was where the university first began in 1891 with only 32 students enrolled? Now it houses the Office of the President and the Office of Admissions. The long patch of grass that runs from Old Main all the way to Campbell Ave is called the Mall. It’s always beautiful and green! This is also where student organizations like to table, so be on the lookout for opportunities for involvement!


  1. Campus Health: Feeling ill? Don’t really know what is wrong? Go check out Campus Health! They offer a variety of health services, including Counseling and Psych Services (CAPS). They have their own pharmacy and a travel immunizations clinic! Even if you don’t need medical attention, Campus Health offers a variety of resources on their website and in person to help you stay healthy during college. Free Condom Friday is always a hit! Campus health can Bursar your visit and any charges so you will not have to pay right away. Additionally, all services and medications from the pharmacy come up as general health services – so if someone else is paying the bill, they don’t see every detail of your medical experience at Campus Health. This place can assist with almost any medical need that you have!


  1. Parking & Transportation Services (PTS): Parking is one of the most frequent questions that freshmen find themselves asking. If you are planning to drive this year, you will want to visit Parking & Transportation Services to get set up with a parking permit. It’s much cheaper to pay for the whole year up front than to pay up to $10 per day if you don’t get a parking permit! There are many options for parking on campus, so make sure to visit the PTS office to get all of your questions answered. PTS also offers other forms of transportation, including the CatTran, Zipcar Car Sharing, and even resources for cyclists.


  1. Meal Plan Office: You gotta eat! The Meal Plan Office is located on the lower level of the SUMC, across from the Wells Fargo bank and right next to the post office. Stop by if you have questions about meal plan options and rates!


  1. The Bookstore: Finally, the bookstore! The bookstore has a lower level that is filled with textbooks for your classes. But the bookstore also has plenty to offer besides textbooks. This is where you can go to get all of your U of A gear and show your Wildcat spirit! The bookstore has technology available for purchase, often with discounts you won’t get at other stores. And the cherry on top of an already fantastic place is the Starbucks inside!


-Khadra & Vanessa

Wildcat Tradition: Spring Fling!

3 Apr

The sun is shining bright, the flowers are blooming, and the sweet smell of summertime is in the air. All this change can only mean one thing: SPRING FLING IS HERE!

For all you new kitties out there and even more mature cats who have not yet experienced this, Spring Fling is 3 days filled with rides, food, excitement, and pure Wildcat awesomeness! Whether you’re there for the rides and thrills or to get your grub on, we guarantee you’ll have an epic time!


But how did a carnival end up on Wildcat turf?

It all started in 1974. The Associated Students of the University of Arizona (aka ASUA) decided that the UA needed a creative way for clubs to fundraise! Thanks to that brilliant thinking, Spring Fling has developed as a prime fundraising opportunity for clubs and organizations on campus. Talk about combining fun and business!

Now, Spring Fling is the largest student-run carnival in the nation and 7th largest event in Tucson. Over 25,000 people attend it!


All this magic just doesn’t happen over night. Nine student directors are hard at work year-round to plan all the details. Talk about commitment! There are also numerous volunteers who help before, during, and after the event. So all Wildcats are on board with this one!

If you’re looking for some fun right on campus, don’t miss out on Spring Fling! With over 35 rides, 20 different food booths, and awesome music from the band Small Pools… this event is one you won’t want to miss!

Spring Fling Hours of Operation:

April 10: 4-11pm*

April 11: 11a-11pm*

April 12: 11a-6pm*

* Admission closes 1 hour prior to carnival closure.

– Lucero

Finding Your Wildcat Family

26 Sep

I remember the night before my first day as a college student.  With my backpack ready and my class schedule printed out, I thought about how many friends I was going to make, all the new adventures I’d have, and, most importantly, how many clubs and organizations I’d be in. I was about to set off on a journey to find my own crazy, fun, and unique “Modern Family”.

Since I was living off-campus my freshmen year, I wanted to make sure I was as involved as possible so I felt like I was a part of the campus. In high school, I was in almost every club offered. I was president of my class, secretary of three clubs, and tutored Spanish three days out of the week. (Fun Fact: I don’t even speak Spanish, so I don’t even know how I qualified for that position.) When I look back on my high school years, those activities are what I remember most. I knew that going into college, if there was an opportunity to get involved, I took it! Then I heard the most magical words to ever come out of a UA student’s mouth: “There are over 500 clubs on campus.” My mind nearly exploded with pure excitement.



On the second day of school, I went to the involvement fair on the mall– tent after tent of brochures and posters of every club I could imagine.  The first club I found an interest in was very similar to my high school student council. So, I decided to apply. I went through the entire process of attending socials and interviews. After meeting the other applicants, there was no doubt that these people would be my “college buddies” and this club would be my new home.

But a couple of weeks later, I received a rejection letter. I was devastated. I saw the rejection letter as a message that I wouldn’t have a home on campus. I only had a couple of friends on campus from high school and they were already friends with the people in their hall or found a club. So, here I was. I was lost and didn’t know what to do next.


After a few days (and an embarrassing number of phone calls with my mom), I picked myself up and decided to keep trying. I knew what kind of college experience I wanted and I was going to make it happen! I was more determined than Lily on her first day of kindergarten.


I went on to ASUA’s website and looked at the list of clubs. Some clubs definitely weren’t for me, but I saw some that interested me. I narrowed it down and attended some club meetings.  None of my friends were interested, so I went alone. I was a very dependent person, so flying solo was something very difficult for me to do- but I took the leap!

I decided to try to join a club whose focus was helping animals. If you know anything about me, you know that I love our furry friends! This had to be my place; there was no question about it! But, lo and behold, it just didn’t work out. Of course I loved the puppies (who wouldn’t?), but I just didn’t seem to click with the members. This happened a few times as I tried different clubs. It was now a month into school and I was questioning if I was doing college the “right way”. 




I was discouraged, but I kept trying different clubs. Then, one day, I went to a club meeting and thought, “I could get into this”. I went to a second meeting the week after and then to a third. I started to love spending time with the people there. I quickly made friends and believed in what the club’s goals were. At the time, I had no idea that these people would be the defining aspect of my college career, but soon enough, we were Gloria and Cam:


I’m currently in my junior year and have an officer position in the club. I can wholeheartedly say that the club members are some of my best friends and they are totally invited to my future wedding (#isthatweird). It was a difficult road to find my place on campus, but when I finally found it, I knew it was perfect for me.

Going through this journey at the beginning of my freshman year taught me that everyone has their place, but it’s up to you to take the leap and find it! Sure, some of my high school friends found a place to fit in by the end of the first week. I didn’t find my home until about Week 6, but I FOUND IT! I tried and I tried and I finally found it. Just like the characters in Modern Family, we’re quirky, weird, and somehow found each other in unusual ways, but we love each other always. Even today, I feel like my Wildcat family was made just for me and I still cannot believe how lucky I am to have them in my life. So, I share this message to you: It doesn’t matter how late it is in the semester or how late it is in your college career, there is a place for you on our campus. All you need to do is take the leap and find your Wildcat Family.





P.S.  Here’s the second part of the Lily’s “Can’t wait to learn!” GIF, because it’s hilarious. I laugh every time.



Shopping Spree on the Mall

24 Mar

When you mention to people that we have a “Mall” on campus, they might automatically think…




Now it’s at that point you have to explain that our “Mall” looks like this:


Disappointing? Not to a Resource Shopaholic! Our Mall is the premiere destination to get everything that you want and need to be successful at UA! We’ve compiled pictures of the best “stores” for the resource savvy student! Here’s what you’ll find as you walk down the mall…

The Nugent Building – Where you go when you need to know!


In the basement, you will find Academic Success and Achievement, which includes programs like Arizona Assurance, Prodigy, SSS/TRiO, Pathway to Academic Student Success, and your Outreach Facilitators!

You will also find the Dean of Students Office, Asian Pacific American Student Affairs ,and Native American Student Affairs.

The Student Union Memorial Center


In addition to a great place to get your grub on, the union also houses ASUA, Career Services, and Leadership Programs.

The Administration Building


This is where you want to go if you have questions about financial aid or loans, and you also can drop off Add/Drop forms here.

Bear Down Gym


Apart from hearing Ambassadors sing Bear Down and telling the story of John Button Salmon, you can also find the THINK TANK and Scholarship Universe.

The Manuel Pacheco Integrated Learning Center (ILC)


Apart from being an excellent place to study, students can also use the Multimedia Zone.

The Main Library

With equipment lending, you can literally throw laptops, iPads, calculators, and more into your shopping bag (but you do have to give it back)! There are also study spaces and computers that you can reserve and use if you want a quiet place to study.

When you walk out of the library, you will find this gem…


Don’t be afraid to touch the butt.

– Vero