Katelyn (’21) is one of our Student Office Assistants in the College’s Advising office. She is entering her sophomore year, studying Biology (BS) with aspirations for pharmacy school after graduation. A native of Vancouver, WA (just north of Portland), Katelyn has a unique perspective as a rare freshman commuter student.
Q: What is something you didn’t know as an incoming student at UP that you wish you would have known?
As an incoming freshman last year, I wish I had known how willing my professors were to help me. Throughout my first semester, it seemed almost bad if I attended office hours for a professor, but it was indeed the opposite. My professors took the time to listen to any of my struggles and work through them with me. Often times the reason I attended office hours, was the reason I succeeded in the ways that I did. Don’t be afraid to approach your professor, because they have office hours for a reason. They want to see you and get to know who you are.
Q: Was it difficult transitioning from high school to college?
For me, it was not very difficult to adjust from high school to college classes because of the college-in-high-school program that I participated in throughout high school. The one thing that was difficult to adjust to was the university life. I went from a community college to a university where there were clubs and events throughout the entire year.
Q. Was it difficult being a freshman commuter student?
What helped me the most when settling in as a commuter student was my freshmen workshop. As a commuter student, there was less of an opportunity to connect with others who lived on campus, so the freshmen workshop helped me to gain friendships outside of my classes.
Q: What was your favorite memory from your freshman year?
My favorite memory from freshman year was the last day of orientation when all the freshmen were given a candle and we each passed the flame around in order to light everyone’s candle. It was the end of orientation and felt like it was the first time that we were on our own as college students, but a part of a family here at UP.
Q: What on-campus activity or service do you recommend new students utilize?
I highly recommend using the learning commons whenever you are struggling in a class. I have had a few experiences with the tutors in the learning commons and they were all very understanding and helpful. An activity that I recommend students to be a part of would be all the clubs and organizations that are offered. Many of them work as advocates to find new opportunities.
Q: Where’s the best place to study on campus?
The best place to study on campus is the third floor of Franz hall. There are comfy couches and never a lot of noise. The second best place to study is the booths on the second floor of the library if you can manage to grab one before everyone else.
Q: What is your favorite spot on campus?
My favorite spot on campus is in the Bauccio commons right in front of the fireplace. It’s a great place to study and have a warm drink in the winter.
Q: What is your favorite off-campus spot nearby?
My favorite spot off campus is the St Johns food trucks, about 1.5 miles from campus. This spot is a quick 5 minute drive (or 9 minute bike ride) from campus and has a ton of good food trucks to choose from. The second best spot off campus is Cathedral Coffee on Willamette — also about 1.5 miles from campus. This is the best place to get coffee and do a little studying.
Q: What advice do you have for the incoming freshmen class?
Be adventurous and don’t be afraid to try something new or go to a new event. At the same time as enjoying yourself, don’t be afraid to hit the books and study when you need to. Be able to enjoy yourself and the experience of college, but also be able to focus on yourself and school no matter what other people are doing.
Thanks, Katelyn!! If you have any questions for Katelyn, feel free to send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org