Transfer Student Spotlight: Anna Strahan

Anna Strahan, 2017 PATH Summer Academy Attendee

Name: Anna Strahan

Community College: Mesa College

UC San Diego College: Warren

Major: Speculative Design

What was the hardest part of transferring?

The hardest part of transferring was getting to know the campus and getting involved on campus. Being a transfer student you don’t have much time to explore other majors (if you want to graduate in 2 years). I switched from Media to Speculative Design towards the end of my first quarter, and it has already made my schedule much more jam-packed; I’m a little less on track. Additionally, being a transfer student there is more pressure to quickly snap into shape in terms of thinking about your career goals, gaining experience for your resume, and preparing for life after graduation.

What was your biggest fear about transferring to UC San Diego?

As a Visual Arts student, my biggest fear of transferring to UC San Diego was not having a great art department. I was excited to be at a UC; however, UC San Diego is notorious for being a STEM school. As soon as I began my classes I knew this reputation was not true; I’m now very proud to be a Visual Arts major here. There are connections to be made with very impressive professors and faculty members within the Visual Arts department. Additionally, because we have such strong STEM departments it gives students the opportunity to participate in rewarding interdisciplinary projects.

What has been your experience as a transfer student at UC San Diego?

So far I’ve had a great experience at UC San Diego. My first quarter was kind of rough because majoring in Media wasn’t right for me, but now that I have switched to Speculative Design I am excited about school again. I am struggling to push myself to join more clubs and make friends on campus. It’s difficult to do with such a full schedule, but I’m working on it and setting goals for myself. I know my time here is going to go by so fast, so I really want to make the best of it.

Why did you join PATH?

I joined PATH for many reasons. I loved the idea of a program that eases you into the campus and the structure of the quarter system. I was also excited to have the opportunity to get a head start on my classes, and the possibility of making friends. The stipend and all paid for living expenses were huge perks as well.

From left to right: Robert Freemon, Professor Danny Widener, Anna Strahan, Aaron Valdivia, Fiore Georgianna, and Carmen Sierra at the UC San Diego Faculty Club for lunch.

What was your favorite part of the PATH program?

My favorite part of the PATH program was making friends, getting to know the campus, having such interesting classes, and making connections with the professors. Being in such small classes with the same students that I was living with in the dorms made for a very collaborative and rewarding experience. For finals we stayed up late all working on our study guides in the dorms, eating snacks and hanging out. It was such a great experience; being close with the students in my classes pushed me to be such a good student.

What resources on campus have you used the most?

I am impressed with what the campus has to offer every time I push myself to go check out a resource. My favorite resources thus far are the Writing Hub and the Food Pantry. Going to the Writing Hub to simply discuss an assignment and make an outline helps my process so much. When I need a paper refined, I can bring it in and work on it further. No matter what your major is there will be a lot of writing. The food pantry is also another great resource. I was blown away by how many groceries we can get each week.

Are your classes easier or harder than expected?

My summer classes during the PATH program were definitely more difficult than any classes I’ve taken since. I’m glad they were so challenging because it prepared me for the fast paced quarter system and the many papers that I would have to write in my classes.

What tips would you tell future students about the UCSD campus?

Leave extra time to get to your classes, and let yourself get aimlessly lost sometimes. Also appreciate all the pieces in the Stuart Collection, and the great architecture on campus along with all the trees! I really love our campus; I’m always taking pictures of Geisel Library at night and looking for new grassy areas where I can hang out.

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