College Opinions: Part One: UC Berkeley


The school seal of UC Berkley; the University is the subject of this interview Gracie Morrison attends.

Garrett Jaffe

This is one in a series of articles interviewing current college students and past graduates, asking them about their insights and experiences in college. This series of articles aims to aid Ventura High School’s college-bound seniors. In this article, I interview Foothill Technology High School alumna Gracie Morrison.

Q: What school do/did you go to?

A: UC Berkeley.

Q: What is your major?
A: Molecular Cellular Biology: Neurobiology.

Q: What was your biggest surprise during your first year of college?

A: The biggest surprise I think is the sense of community I have here. I was really worried about attending a school with 40,000 students and feeling lost and having no support. Except, to my surprise, Berkeley is really great about creating resources to help with school, health, or socializing. I definitely know where to go for help with a given problem, and I know there is someone that will care to give me help.

Q:What advice would you give to seniors that are attending college next year?
A: Let yourself be pushed out of your comfort zone. If anything, college is a large process of finding out who you are. It’s the first time living without parents, having to make new friends, and navigating new independence. Without trying new experiences or meeting new people it’s hard to establish yourself. My advice is to get involved. The more you put into your college experience, the more you will get out of it!

Q:What do/did you like about college?

A: At college, there are so many types of people with a spectrum of personalities and interests, which makes it exciting to meet new people and try new things. There are clubs and organizations for almost any niche interest, which helps turn a large school into a smaller community.

Q:What do you miss about high school, if anything?

A: Since I go to a large college, the biggest difference is the amount of strangers in my classes. In high school, you are able to recognize almost everyone, however, in college it’s pretty normal if you don’t know a single person in a class. This is scary and I definitely miss the constant familiar faces, but it is also fun and exciting to meet new people.

Q:What advice do you have for juniors in terms of grades and extracurriculars that want to go to college?

A.Try and take extra curriculums that you actually find interesting! Don’t just join organizations that you think look good on applications, because administrators wants to see you as an individual and extracurriculars are a way to stand out and show people who you really are what your interests are.

Q: Are you planning on majoring on anything, if so what is it? What are you thinking you want to do after collage?

A: Neurobiology.

Q: Any final words of wisdom?

A: Don’t become overwhelmed with the increase in workload or distance from home. It’s easy to lose sight of the big picture, especially at a highly competitive school, but just try to remember that everyone is in this together, and there will always be people around you that support you. 

Total Student enrollment at UC Berkley in Fall of 2018 (Souce UC Berkley official website) Infographic by: Garret Jaffe