OBSERVATIONS: LASC's Puente Class Goes to Northern California to Visit Universities
By Charlisse M. Bennett
As we approached closer north there were so many farms. The farms had animals such
as cows, horses, and sheep. There were a few farms that allowed you to stop and
purchase fruit. The atmospheres of the farms were calm. The animals were calm as
well. I did not see people out in the open, but as I observed I started to think about
Caesar Chavez and the farm worker’s movement. I started thinking about their
struggles and I started to imagine how Caesar Chavez felt before he decided to speak
on behalf of farm workers.
My first assumption of Santa Cruz was that it would be really green and sunny. It was
definitely sunny but not as green as I thought. Santa Cruz was very calm and peaceful.
It was hard to believe that they have such a high crime rate. The people seem to be to
themselves, not in a rude way, they just seem to really be in tune to what they were
doing. I did not see people just standing around like here in Los Angeles. People
seemed to have had their day planned.
I was excited as I entered the admissions office. I began wondering about my time
Robin Rhodes was our transfer presentation host. She was very informative and helpful
in making sure we understood what it took to meet transfer requirement into UC Santa
Cruz. Robin was once a transfer student from 1983-1985.
Courtney Ball was our tourist. We toured Cowa College with her. She has been a
student at UC Santa Cruz for two years. She is pursuing a double major in
environmental studies and biology. The two most interesting classes that she’s taking
now are film culture and society as well as memories of WWII. Uc Santa Cruz has the
highest number of women faculty. If I did transfer to UC Santa Cruz I would stay in
Porter College which is close to Arts because that is where they place people who are
in family housing.
The UC Santa Cruz mascotis the banana slug. Originally the campus mascot was
seals but students felt that it was unfair that the decision of seals were decided by the
athletes only. So students addressed this issue and by majority vote, the banana slugs
that are found all around campus won!
The El Teatro Capesino was on a residential street. When we entered the inside and sat
down the energy was great. The audience was excited when the lights went off. The
stage stood out reflecting colors of green, purple, blue, and red. Christy was the host
before the show. She gave the latest news on premiers of the theatre. I didn’t know we
were going to see a play. I thought we were just touring. How exciting! When the host
left the room got dark and quiet.
The play was called La Esquinta, USA. One of the main characters was Daniel, an 18
year old who was a hardhead. He sold drugs and used drugs as well. He seemed to
hear voices in his head. The judge said if he didn’t graduate he goes to prison. He
seemed to be enjoying school, but his lifestyle was difficult. He had a lot of anxiety. It
was an amazing play. The actor played multiple characters and it was as if we were
Telegraph Ave. had a fast-paced but relaxing atmosphere. It was a combination of
book stores, café’s, tattoo shops, art galleries, multicultural stores, and record stores.
There was also people who sold things out on the sidewalk. I also saw people
experiencing homelessness either relaxing with their dogs or had signs asking for
help. It was a perfect day to be on Telegraph Ave.
When I entered Berkeley I was surprised to see how live it was. I assumed Berkeley was
going to be this school sitting high on a long flight of stairs. I assumed the campus
would be extremely quiet. What a relief! It was not as boring as I assumed! It had a lot
going on students had booths out sharing information, students walking handing out
articles and magazines. It was a large and beautiful campus and has so much to offer.
Our tourist was Ryan he was a freshmen. He was thorough as well I appreciated his
honesty when I asked him what he liked and disliked about the campus.
I really enjoyed UC Davis more than I imagined I would. It felt like home. Unless I was
just tired ,or it was a Saturday and the campus was practically empty. I loved the
atmosphere and the idea of it being car free. I am looking forward to bringing my
family to tour the campus!