The beginning of sophomore year has definitely been interesting. I’ve moved from a dorm to an apartment and from breadth requirements to major requirements. Getting used to the new environment of apartment living has been good. I for one was incredibly excited to get away from dorm life and the eight million ways it made my life more inconvenient. The simplicity of having a sink to wash dishes in, a fridge to keep my water cold and not having to wear shoes in the shower truly is something I can appreciate. I’m really enjoying this new transition, especially with friends around every corner to share my day and life with.
Classes, on the other hand, have been a little more difficult. As a double major in English and Film and Media, the reading workload is starting to scare me and I’m definitely experiencing the stereotypical sophomore major meltdown. It’s somehow simultaneously too late to start on a new major but too early to truly know what I want to do for the rest of my life, but I know I’ll figure it out. I’m trying to make the most out of my classes, while also figuring out if they’re right for me.
Something else I’ve noticed about sophomore year is the fact that people seem less interested in getting to know other people. I feel like my first year classes were always filled with people willing to strike up a conversation and eager to exchange contacts. This year, however, I’ve found it much more difficult to carry a conversation with someone that I’d just met. It’s much easier to succeed in a class when you have people to help you through it and I hope I can eventually meet someone willing to share their class experience with me.
So far, sophomore year has been less draining than freshman year without GBO to welcome me to the hallowed halls of UC Berkeley. Although GBO helped me get to know people, it felt overwhelming at times. This year, I’m grateful to have a couple of friends that I’m close with. They make leaving home again easier because I’m no longer fully diving into the unknown. At least this year, I’ll already have my go-to study spots on campus, my favorite coffee shops and a firmer grasp on public transportation.
It’s cute to see all the freshmen mulling around and discovering their own lives at UC Berkeley. At such a big school, it may seem hard to find your place and finding a community may seem even harder. I know plenty of sophomores — myself included — who feel that they have yet to find the sense of belonging they have been hoping for. Despite the struggles of adjusting to change, I hope this year will provide more opportunities, more people to meet and even more amazing memories.