Archive for May, 2015

What Makes You Happy?

Hi everyone!

So just to re-introduce myself for those of you who may not know, my name is Nicole Oparaugo and I am currently a first year U/U( well for the next few weeks) student planning on declaring biology next school year!

I currently live in Mesa Court, Ondas to be exact, and I am super happy to have had the opportunity to be able to reach out to you all!

As my freshman days slowly come to a close I can’t help but look back and think of all the amazing things this year has brought. From having such amazing hallmates, becoming Volleyball champs, PASSING my classes, lol and going to China this year has been extremely memorable.

Thinking back on the days when I was making my college decision I guess you can say I’m pretty solid on the decision I made. There really are a lot of opportunities that rest ahead, it’s all just a matter of whether or not you take advantage of them. My best advice that I can give is to not let anything or anyone get in the way of your dreams and aspirations. If you find yourself in a situation where you feel like you’re “not good enough”, power through! More importantly than that, if someone says that you wont make it, prove to YOURSELF that you will. Make your college experience your own! Do the things that make you feel the most fulfilled and happy because at the end of the day it’s about you and you don’t want to graduate and say “I wish I would have.”

zotfingers– Nicole

Once Undeclared, ‘It’s Okay’

Hello fellow Anteaters!

For those you that don’t know, my name is Jazmin Reyes and I’m a first year Zot Blogger. My current major is Literary Journalism but I initially came into UCI as an Undeclared/Undecided student.

Seeing that there are only three weeks left of my first year in college, I can definitely say that this year has gone by too fast! It’s funny that it wasn’t too long ago when I was worried about which college I was going to be admitted to and which one would I sign my “life” away to. I believed that my choices would be limited down through the rejections I would received, but unlike some of my fellow classmates I was lucky to have been accepted to all nine universities I applied to. As gratifying as that is, it only made my decision harder (and it didn’t help that I didn’t know what major I wanted to pursue either). Going on campus tours was the only way to make a decision. I only visited UCI once, but as my family and I were waiting in the office watching an intro video, I was already impressed. I think what left the best impression was UCI’s wide and open campus. Unlike the other campus’ I had visited, I was able to envision myself feeling comfortable and at ease. From then on, UCI was present in my thoughts. Social and involvement wise, I didn’t know what to expect from college, but I did look forward to the experience of making a lot of new friends (which was something the tour guides never failed to mention). And as I mentioned in my first couple of blogs, I didn’t do SPOP (Student Parent Orientation Program), which is where you first meet most of your fellow first years. Instead, I was already going to be getting the experience of dorming life and college classes through Summer Bridge, a summer program at UCI specifically designed for incoming Freshmen. It was through the summer program that I met a group of people and mentors before starting the quarter, so that is definitely something I would encourage everyone to do.

As you will go on to do either SPOP or a summer program, I would just like to congratulate you once more for being admitted into UCI. One thing I would like you all to know is that you shouldn’t feel pressured to “find” or declare a major, even if you have an idea of what you want to go into. Try to keep in mind as well, that we are a UC school, which means that your major does not necessarily have to have a direct correlation to your path after college (i.e. for law school or medical school). One of my sorority sisters is graduating UCI in a couple weeks as an English major and is starting law school next school year. As you work on your general education, you’ll start figuring out what you like and dislike, and I that’s one of the beauties as start unaffiliated with a school.


All the best,


Part 1 of my Trip to China



So this is what it feels like to be in the last week 5 of my freshman year? Wow, time really does fly. Besides the midterms stress, this weresearchek has definitely been a good one. I got a position in a research lab on campus! What that means is that in addition to classes and everything I will also be conducting research under a distinguished faculty member. Working in a lab is exciting because it is a direct application to the things that you learn in the classroom. You get to physically manipulate, test, and apply many of the things that you have been studying!

If you do in fact decide to pursue research I would advise you to research something that you love. Join a lab that engages you and makes you excited. Research is choice, so why do something that you would be absolutely miserable doing. For me personally, I love the area we are focusing on. Being that I would like to specialize in neurology, the lab that I am in taps into that interest. Even if you foresee yourself pursuing medical school over grad school, I would still say to give research a chance. You never know if you will enjoy something if you never try it. Keep your mind and your options open!

UCI as well as every other UC school are research driven schools. (You will hear that a lot) There are plenty of options and I am very confident that you will find something that interests you!


Relay For Life

Hello fellow Anteaters!

IMG_0389Today approximately around 12:06pm, I completed a twenty-seven hour volunteer shift for Relay for Life. This twenty-four hour event took place at UCI in remembrance of those who lost their battle to cancer and to celebrate the survivors. From as early as nine in the morning many of our on campus organizations where setting up along Aldrich park. The most impressive part of the event was how many of our clubs and Greek organizations prepared to spend the night on campus, setting up tents and blankets in order to support and represent such meaningful and heart-touching event.

The ground was hard and the temperature only continued to decrease, but this was nothing compared to what many of these survivors and family members of individuals affected by cancer had to face. There were guests speakers sharing their stories and their experiences with cancer. It was touching to hear our fellow Anteaters speak during this portion of the event.

This event was personal for me; my mom is a breast cancer survivor. And although I was too young at the time to comprehend what she was undergoing, I cannot possibly imagine how different my life would have been if I would’ve lost her so early on in my life.

As my first relay event at UCI, I was extremely pleased with the outcomes of it. Tiring as it was and despite my upcoming midterms, it was nice being able to support a cause as important as this. I would definitely become involved next year!


Lanterns were lit up during the Luminaria portion of the event, spelling “Cure”.


All the best,