By Olivia Clarke
If I stick my head out of my apartment window, I can see that the ground is littered with discarded food: two whole onions, yellow peppers, decomposing noodles. Someone above me has been tossing this stuff out of the window all year. Each time we notice new scraps, my roommate and I look vaguely upward and shake our fists: “How irresponsible!”
Next to that kitchen window sits my new compost pail. Like many students who live on campus, I returned from a final exam last term to find it sitting on my counter, shiny and expectant. It has a convenient handle, and an eye-catching label with instructions that read, “In: coffee grounds, soiled napkins, veggie scraps. Out: liquids, Styrofoam, all plastics.” The pail is straightforward and easy to use. And the thing is, I know that Food Tosser above me has one too. Yet he or she continues to chuck food into the dirt.
But maybe that’s what makes the compost pail so special. The folks at the Campus Sustainability Office know what they’re up against when they try to encourage change: old habits, laziness, lack of understanding. They know plenty of students think composting is gross, and would much sooner throw their scraps in the garbage – or out the window – and forget about them. Nonetheless, here are these compost pails. Stationed in each housing unit on West Campus, they remind me of brave little soldiers, perpetuating Portland’s relentless environmental spirit in the face of all obstacles.
By: Zaira Carranza
On the PSU campus there is a food cart for every kind of food you can think of: Thai, Mexican, Mediterranean, Arabic, American and the list goes on. When I am sad I can just go to the nearest food cart and my frown will be turned upside down. When I walk out of the library, I can smell food. The hardest decision is deciding where to eat, because everything is delicious. Needless to say, I have gained 10 pounds my first term of college.
Some of the foodcart owners know my name. Even when they are not working they recognize me on the street. Like many students, I have two jobs and am a full-time student. Basically I’m always hungry and don’t have time to cook. Don’t you think there should be a section in the FAFSA for estimating how much money you will spend on food? It’s where my money goes.
By: Shezad Khan
A lot of us have had jobs we don’t like, and a lot of you currently have a job that you don’t like. My only advice is for you to quit.
It may sound a bit irrational, but quitting my previous job was one of the best decisions I’ve made. Unlike most people, I quit my job before I found a new one. But honestly, it was still worth it. I was in a position where I would absolutely dread going to work every day. I couldn’t stand it. I was fed up with having an unrewarding job. I did more work than most of my coworkers and received no recognition, I was sick of the drama caused by people twice my age, and dealing with some of the worst customers.
I worked for my previous employer for just over three years and my only regret about quitting is that I didn’t do it sooner. I found a new job just a few weeks after I left my old one and I couldn’t be happier with my decision. I now work in a place where a huge focus is teamwork. My coworkers and my managers are all awesome, and we’re always recognized for doing good work – I’ve even received three Starbucks gift cards!
Initially, it was my counselor who pushed me to quit my job. She made me realize how unhappy I was there, how much I hated getting off at midnight and having to be up early for school, and how much I hated dealing with the people I had to deal with. If you find yourself in a similar situation where you can’t stand your clientele, your coworkers, or your manager anymore, consider quitting. The thought might be a bit nerve-wracking, but there’s a good chance you’ll be happier somewhere else.
Trust me when I say it’s just not worth it when your job makes you miserable and makes you feel drained physically, mentally, and even emotionally. There’s a better opportunity for you out there. Go for it.
By: Sharon Nellist
I was merely ONE among a sold-out crowd listening to the lovely Angela Davis speak her words of great wisdom in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Jan. 21, 2015 at Portland State University.
A year ago when I came to PSU, I never would have thought to attend such an event, simply because I never have before. I also have never thought of myself as a very accurate representative of diversity – I am a white female, how would I make a difference?
Angela Davis told me otherwise.
She spoke about changing the way we see the world by thinking beyond our assumptions – having a broader consciousness because what happens to an individual has worldly reverberations.
She helped me to realize that diversity is not the separation of identity but the coming together of every unique individual.
We are privileged at Portland State University to have an abundance of diverse resources and events to expose ourselves to in our campus community.
Lives matter. And the only way to ensure that they matter is to educate yourself, to have a passion and a voice, and people will hear you. As Angela Davis spoke these words, she reminded me that it is my responsibility, our responsibility, simply because we are a member of humanity.
We have to act as if it were possible to change the world – Angela Davis
#PSUdiversity – to see what people said about Angela Davis’ keynote address at PSU
There’s something about rain that makes me want to curl up with a piping hot mug of coffee and a good book. Granted, I’m rather bookish and it doesn’t take much, but Portland is a literary heaven of sorts. Not only does our city have THE perfect atmosphere, Portland is home to a phenomenal array of bookstores, publishers, and literary events where I can learn more about the industry I love and mingle with other bibliophiles.
I plan on doing just that at the end of this month at Write to Publish, a one-day conference for writers, artists, and other industry professionals that aims to demystify the publishing process. It’s happening right here on campus, and presents the perfect opportunity for me (and you!) to geek out over books with the amazing people who create them. Hosted by Ooligan Press, the conference’s six panels range in subject matter from funding your creative project to graphic novels. There’s an impressive lineup of panelists, and Shelf Awareness Editor-in-Chief John Mutter will be delivering the keynote speech.
The best part? Students can enjoy the benefit of highly discounted admission. College student tickets are only $35, while general admission is $100. Don’t have time to attend the full conference? You can purchase a ticket for a single panel, or just stop by and peruse the free book fair. So dust off that manuscript, purchase your ticket, and mark your calendar. I hope to see you there at #w2p15!
What: Write to Publish 2015
When: January 31, 2015, 9:00AM–5:30PM
Where: Smith Memorial Student Union
By: Chelsea Ware
It’s only the second week into the term, so why are we all so stressed out already? From team projects, jobs, and internship applications, it can be hard to manage everything and remain sane. But no need to pull out your hair while on your way to grab your 5th Starbucks coffee because I have listed some tips and on-campus resources for battling stress.
1. Visit SHAC: In addition to counseling, SHAC has many services that can help during hectic times. Their Mind Spa allows students to relax and rejuvenate at no charge. Services include light therapy, meditation, yoga, biofeedback, or a massage. In addition, SHAC now offers low cost acupuncture. http://www.pdx.edu/shac/mind-spa
2. Break a Sweat: Working out has been a proven way to relieve stress and promote overall well-being. The PSU Rec Center offers an easy way for us to do this by providing weight and cardio machines, a track, a swimming pool and classes. It’s free to get in with your student I.D card. http://www.pdx.edu/recreation/home
For those of you who prefer to work out outside, there are many clubs that offer an outdoor setting. I personally love the PSU Running Club because it’s a great way to meet other students and enjoy some of the trails located near downtown Portland. My favorite is the Springwater Corridor near OMSI, offering 20 miles of lush trees and some pretty scenic views of the Willamette River.
3. Go to Campus Events: During midterms and finals, PSU often posts flyers with anxiety-relieving events such as ice cream socials and therapy dog sessions. While it can be easy to say no, I personally think that spending time with dogs is a great way give one’s mind a break from all of the chaos that comes with school and life. And trust me, the dogs are really cute!
4. Enjoy Your Food: Most Americans eat too fast. Eating slowly and mindfully enhances the pleasure of the dining experience. In addition, a recent Japanese study involving 1,700 young women concluded that eating more slowly resulted in feeling full sooner, and thus eating fewer calories at mealtime. To master the art of slow eating, put on some music or sit somewhere that gives you a view of the park blocks. Your stomach will thank you!
What are your tips for managing stress? Please add them in the comments section below!
By: Marilynn Sandoval
College is definitely not cheap. I am taking 14 credits this term, and for an undergraduate Oregon resident, tuition is on average $2,030. For an out-of-state student, tuition is on average $6,860. That’s more than $4,800 of a difference I have to somehow pay. Thank you, financial aid!
Yes, I realize that I could have chosen a school closer to my hometown to save money. However, I wanted to explore different places, and I fell in love with Portland. It also doesn’t help that living in Portland is somewhat expensive.
So what is my solution to this problem? Work two different jobs before and after classes. That doesn’t really leave me with a whole lot of time to study and to just stop, breathe and relax. However, I am thankful one of my jobs is right on campus and I work with a staff that understands. They emphasize how important school is and want us to succeed.
I know I am not alone in feeling the struggle of working two or more jobs to help pay for school and other expenses. What are your tips for balancing your time between work and school?
By: Jasmin Landa
Winter term is here and so is the cold, wet weather. In addition to the obvious investments you need to succeed in class (books, supplies, etc.), also consider the clothes on your back. Here is a short list of how you can show Viking pride with PSU gear as you walk across a chilly and rainy urban campus.
Coat – Winter lows in Portland average 36 degrees Fahrenheit. A coat provides an outer shell to insulate you from the cold and wind.
Sweatshirt – For less chilly days, a PSU sweatshirt is a comfortable alternative. It’s great for class, and you can transition easily from the lecture hall to a Vikings sporting event.
T-Shirt – Under that sweatshirt, wear a Portland State of Mind T-shirt. They highlight the culture of the city and the campus’s unique relationship with the greater community.
Coffee mug – Caffeine is a big part of the Pacific Northwest culture. There are multiple coffee shops all around campus to keep you awake and at your best game. When you fill up, put it in a PSU mug.
Umbrella –Portland receives about 88 percent of its rain from October through May. A PSU umbrella will get you from building to building without getting soaked. PSU buildings also offer community umbrellas, so you can grab one if you forget yours.
Galoshes – Rain is inevitable in Portland, so try a pair Viking rain boots, which feel great and look cute.
Jeans – Although they aren’t really winter wear, the comfort of jeans allows you to walk around downtown and take advantage of PSU’s central location. They go with the casual nature of campus, located in the heart of downtown Portland.
As far as I’m concerned, students need two things in life: caffeine and convenient places to study. If you’re the studious type who can handle small doses of hustle and bustle, cafés can serve as ideal go-to study locations. There are numerous cafés around Portland State University that are sure to have your favorite caffeine, or for those who have transcended caffeine, herbal drink.
Here are my preferred three cafés in the PSU area:
Revolución Coffee House: Located close to campus on SW Columbia St. and 6th Ave., Revolución Coffee House is an absolute delight. It’s the first ever Mexican coffee house to be established in the Portland area. For those interested in local, sustainable fare this is the café for you. Their coffee is grown by fair trade cooperatives, and they use local ingredients when possible. Check out their delicious signature drinks and pastries. And yes, they even offer Mexican food!
Park Avenue Café: Known as a popular study spot for students, the café is located on the Park Blocks between SW Market and Clay. If you like fine Italian coffee, Park Avenue has you covered. The family-owned café also serves locally-prepared, fresh food. Yum! The veggie lox bagel is highly recommended.
Case Study Coffee: Situated in the heart of downtown at SW 10th and Yamhill, the coffee shop serves an eclectic array of signature drinks. How can you pass up a Bourbon-aged caramel latte? Students flock to this café for its later open hours, its convenient central location and excellent vibe.
If you happen to be on a coffee/study pilgrimage around PSU, let us know your favorite café spot!
One would think that being vegan in Portland would be more than easy, that Portland would be the perfect place to take veganism on a test drive.
Yes I, Teddi Faller, have fallen off the vegan wagon. Hard. In fact, I’m eating cheese and pineapple pizza as I type, Obviously, I have no excuse considering I’m an adult who is more than capable of buying food, or at least practicing the willpower to not succumb to superfluous foods with dairy in them, e.g. snacks. But as I was walking to the Veggie Grill at 508 SW Taylor during my class break, I realized how many places there must be in Portland that would encourage me to return to veganism.
So naturally I bookmarked dozens of vegan restaurants in the Portland metropolitan area:
- Veggie Grill: Obviously. I’d gone to one in San Diego and the one out in Tanasbourne, and they never fail to impress. Plus, who doesn’t like to feel holy while eating buffalo sauce?
- Loving Hut: I’ve already been here thrice, and like Veggie Grill, I’d gone to one of its franchises in San Diego. Although the menu changes with each franchise, it’s a quick and inexpensive way to grab some vegan grub.
- Los Gorditos: I can’t argue with a Mexican restaurant that has an entire page of its menu dedicated to vegan items like the Garbage Burrito ($8) with soy cheese, soyrizo, tofu, beans, rice, red and green salsa, onion, and cilantro.
- Sonny Bowl: If you’re in Portland, then you have to have a go-to food cart such as Sonny Bowl which serves hearty bowls in large or small sizes like the “Black Bean Bowl.” For $4 (small) or $7 (large), you get “black beans, cilantro-lemon sauce, kale, tahini dressings, jicama-carrot-radish slaw in cumin-lime dressing, and walnut faux-rizo atop basmati rice. Sounds pretty fancy for a food cart, right?
- Petunia’s Bakery: Every vegan – really every person, but when you’re vegan it’s extra hard – needs a good bakery that she can depend on without getting anxiety over going out with her friends. It serves all the usuals like snickerdoodles ($2.75 each) and Black and White cake ($7.99 per slice). Sure the prices seem a little bougie, but what’s indulgence without indulgent-level prices?
Although there’s a million places for a burgeoning vegan, or born-again, to go to in Portland, I’m having a hard time falling in line. But now that I’ve made this list, I’ve a new drive to ret
A little while ago I found out that I needed two more science credits to fulfill the requirements for that portion of my degree. My academic advisor told me about one-credit lab classes that consist of trips around Oregon where students learn about the natural environment. One of the one-credit classes I signed up for was a geology camping trip in central Oregon. As a business student, I didn’t expect this class to have a huge impact on my learning. I was very wrong.
During the day, a tour bus took us to different locations throughout rural Grant County, near John Day where we dug for fossils and hiked on scenic trails. At night, we cooked dinner by campfire and made s’mores. My favorite part of the trip was taking a two-mile hike through the Painted Hills. Listed as one of Oregon’s seven wonders, they get their name from the delicately colored yellow, gold, black and red stratifications in the soil.
As someone who grew up in the city, this trip had a vast influence on how I see the world. The residents of Grant County sometimes lived miles apart and many of the towns had populations under 200. There were no malls and no cell reception, yet the people were so content and happy. I think a lot of people base their happiness on material possessions, such as owning the latest IPhone. But maybe the reason we feel like we always need more is that once we’ve bought that thing, we quickly realize that it didn’t make us as happy after all. This leads people to get lost in an endless cycle of materialism that is difficult to escape. Through my trip, I learned that true happiness comes from the simple things, like a panoramic view of the mountains at dusk or cooking sausages over a fire with friends. True happiness comes from things that can’t be bought from a store.
The Seven Wonders of Oregon can be found at: http://traveloregon.com/7wonders/
Affordable camping gear for PSU students is available through the PSU Outdoor Program: http://www.pdx.edu/recreation/outdoor-program
By: Andreea N.
Are you familiar with Portland State University’s resource centers? They provide students with the tools, resources and support networks to better integrate into the community. They also help students excel in their studies and increase social, cultural and global awareness.
Diversity and Multicultural Student Services (DMSS)
DMSS works with students from ethnically-diverse backgrounds to guide their academic success through a student-centered inclusive environment. It offers many programs and resources, including Latino Student Services, Native American Student Services, the Diversity Scholarship Program and much more.
Disability Resource Center
PSU recognizes and respects students’ abilities, skills and talents. If you have a disability or you’re teaching a course in which a student has a disability, the resource center is here to help. Adopting a confidential and sensitive approach, the center empowers all university students through accessibility and assistance. If you’re interested in helping out, sign up to be a note taker!
Women’s Resource Center
The WRC has an interesting “her-story.” The center started out as a Women’s Faculty Club open to female faculty members and wives of professors. Now, WRC sponsors quite a few programs focused on students’ wellbeing and community development. The four programs offered include the Interpersonal Violence Program, Leadership in Action, Empowerment Project and Community Events. Click here for details on becoming a volunteer.
Queer Resource Center
QRC provides students along the sexuality and gender spectrum with a community that supports and empowers intersecting identities of LGBTQQIAAP to succeed and integrate within PSU. Through the collaboration of students, faculty and staff, the center offers Trans Resources, Gender Neutral Bathrooms, Queer Students of Color Resources and many more services. Check out the QRC community calendar for awesome PSU and local events.
By: Zaira Carranza
What kind of rights would you fight for? Would you be willing to protest at the PSU campus? Today as I was walking to class, and I stumbled upon a protest. My immediate reaction was confusion. I then realized it was for a good cause. The protesters were trying to send a message about the political problems going on in their home country. It impressed me because they have so many places to go in Portland and they came here. Everyone came together for one common cause. The diversity on campus made the protest fun and interesting.
The last year of your undergraduate career can be kind of scary and overwhelming. If you’re planning on going to grad school and you haven’t even started to prepare, it’s time to step on it.
I, like many others, am a severe procrastinator when it comes to things that stress me out. A lot of times I need that sense of pressure as a push for me to get things going. I finally got up the nerve to email some professors about getting letters of recommendation at the beginning of this month. Although this isn’t a severely late start to the process, it is a lot later than it should be. I still have to take my GRE and put together my writing samples. This is one of those things that you won’t want to save until the last minute. Honestly, it’s just going to get worse the longer you put it aside.
Start planning early. Look for schools that have grad programs you’re interested in. Research the programs instead of just checking for your field of study. Start the application – make sure you know exactly what they’re looking for in the application. Send your requests for letters of recommendation ASAP. You want to give your professors enough time – they’re probably a lot busier than you are – and if they write you a letter, you owe them a lot of gratitude.
Trust me, folks. You’re going to be glad if you start sooner rather than later. It’ll make ending your last undergraduate year a lot smoother.
By: Brooke Horn
When I moved here, I couldn’t bring Bandit with me.
I knew that a 400sqft studio in the city is no place for an energetic Black Lab, and that I would be able to adopt after the move. Bandit was more than happy to stay home with family and escape the traumatic experience of flying. After settling into Portland, I did a lot of research into pet adoption. For my fellow students who own pets, or are interested in owning pets, here are some of the best tips I’ve come across:
- Know the pet rules for where you live. According to PSU’s Housing & Residence Life FAQs, “The only animals allowed in on-campus housing are fish in a small tank (up to 10 gallons), cats, and service animals that are pre-approved by the Disability Resource Center (DRC).” For those of you who live off-campus, it’s important to know that most management companies will require you to have renter’s insurance (I decided to go with State Farm for $10/month), and most have a policies regarding weight and breed restrictions.
- The Oregon Humane Society is wonderful. Not only do they have great pets that desperately need good homes, they have a phenomenal list of resources for pet-owners. This list covers everything from which apartments are pet-friendly to sample pet references/resumes.
- Buy all of your pet supplies in advance, and make sure you really have the room in your home AND your schedule to devote to a pet. Pinterest has some great student-friendly ideas for DIY pet furniture that saves space!
- Spend some time researching your local veterinarians. Although they’re a little far from campus, the folks at Powell Veterinary Center have been kind to me, my pet, AND my wallet.
I finally met my purr-fect match through The Delicious Mickey Grrrl Fund – a small group of dedicated, friendly locals who match neglected pets with forever homes. They went above and beyond to make my adoption experience wonderful, and now I’m the proud pet-mama of Ulysses (pictured above).
Have an inspiring adoption story, a cute pet photo, or know of a good pet resource? Share it with us!
By: Jasmin Landa
PSU’s annual Party in the Park commenced on Oct. 7, bringing together all campus organizations that can offer students avenues to particiapte in something they love, whether its something, whther its something pertaining to their educational major or an extracurricular activity.
Student organizations are a great way to get involved, an to find other students on campus with similar attributes, interests and excitement for activities.
During the Party in the Park, I was able to learn about, sign uo for and connect with various student organizations, one being the Entrepreneurship Club (E-Club). This club and thos who are part of i inspire my dreams and entrepreneurial desires to start my own company one day. I am learning a lot while also discvering more about myself.
So as we approach winter term, have you joined any student orgaanizations? I encourage you to get involved: Join, Participate and be fearless.
Here is a link for a current list of student groups/programs and their contact infromation:
By: Sharon Jackson
I absolutely adore this time of year! See expression below.
Bulky sweaters. Knitted socks. Hot holiday beverages. “I could go on forever baby!”
My dad and I used to pull out several boxes of tangled strings of large light bulbs from the attic and attempt to wrestle them into a straight line.
After many hours and a few curse words, we would finally attach them ever so precisely to the outline of our home. I am certain we had the best looking house in the neighborhood.
For this reason I get a bit nostalgic on Peacock Lane: a block in Southeast Portland where each vintage Tudor home has been entirely decorated since 1920.
My mother and I would watch A Christmas Story every year [I seriously believe the movie is an accurate representation of her childhood holidays] and laugh hysterically at the leg lamp catastrophe and terrible gifts from distant relatives until we would cry.
My first holiday in Portland, I started to feel a bit homesick.
For this reason I am always present at Portland’s Annual Tree Lighting ceremony in Pioneer Square : the official start to the holiday season with the lighting of the 75-foot Douglas fir and a sing-along of all the favorite holiday carols by a family of random strangers, even in the pouring rain!
By: Marilynn Sandoval
I’ve become a huge fan of the new Collaborative Life Sciences Building on the South Waterfront. Sure, the transportation there might not be ideal for some folks. But the new labs, lecture halls, research space and restaurants are really nice.
I’m a science major, and I started at PSU the same year they began construction in 2011. I didn’t know if they’d be done on time for me to experience having classes in the new building, but they must have had amazing people working on it, because it opened this fall. I’m sure we have broken in this building quite fast. Almost every seat in the 400-student lecture hall is filled from class to class.
The most exciting part about this building is that we get to interact with students from OSU and OHSU. As my chemistry professor put it, “You never know who you can run into in this building.” I hope to experience the new labs and research space and meet more students from other schools next term.
I also enjoy taking the streetcar there for free. You just have to play a game of puzzle trying to fit everyone after class has ended. I’m there around lunchtime, so I’m grateful when my stomach is growling and there is a Starbucks located just right in front of the classroom. Oh, and there is an Elephants Delicatessen, too!
However, one thing the building is missing is a spot to print papers quickly. If anyone does know about a printing spot in there, please share your knowledge! I’m still trying to figure out the building myself.
Has anyone else been able to explore the new building? If so, what did you think about it?
By Grace Carroll
So you’ve just gotten a message to your .pdx email that it’s time to register for classes. Maybe you have a list of subjects you’ve always wanted to study, or maybe you just know the next Spanish class you need to take. Where ever you are in the process, here are some things to think about when registering:
● How often is the course offered? Keep in mind that some classes are not offered every term at PSU, while others are. For instance, most TOP: (topic) classes change each term, and if you find one specific to your interest, that should perhaps take priority over the Intro to Queer Studies class (a UNST Cluster course) that you’ve always wanted to take.
● What are your most productive times of the day? Sure, you’re sick of getting up with an early schedule, but maybe you’re just burnt out by evening classes. If you’re falling asleep in class, you may need to rearrange your day. Consider when you are most motivated during the day, and when you be best able to do your homework.
● Who is the professor? It’s true, you don’t always get much of a choice. But when you do, looking into your professors’ backgrounds can be a deciding factor in which classes you take. Portland State’s website has profiles for many of its faculty, so check the department pages for your courses. If you don’t find anything there, RateMyProfessors.com is your next step!
Still have questions? TALK TO YOUR ADVISER!
For a college student like me who is on a tight budget, going to a mainstream movie theater can be tough. $11 for a ticket? $6 for popcorn? All for a movie that’s a remake or just full of plot holes and lousy acting… However, there is still a way for students to enjoy movies without breaking the bank right here on campus. 5th Avenue Cinema, Portland State University’s student run movie theater, is free with your student I.D. You also get a complimentary bag of popcorn. One to two movies are featured every weekend at 7:30 and 9. It is a great place to check out vintage titles such as “Gremlins” and “Return to Oz” while supporting your fellow students.
If you are new to campus, it is a wonderful way to meet other people because it is definitely not your conventional movie theater. One of the coolest things about 5th Avenue Cinema is that the patrons know how to have an exciting time. When I was last there a few weeks ago to watch the Japanese horror flick Pulse, people gathered in the lobby before the show to talk and munch on their popcorn. During the movie, the audience was cracking witty jokes and strangers were laughing together about the characters’ poor decisions. The small theater size and enthusiasm from the crowd made the amusement palpable, and it was hard not to be infected from the humor that buzzed around.
If you haven’t already, I highly suggest that you check out some of their screenings. All upcoming titles and show times can be found at http://5thavenuecinema.org/.