By Breana Oliver, CSUB Public Affairs Intern
From its laid back atmosphere to its agricultural roots, Bakersfield has a feeling that is unique to all who visit or reside here. Like some of my fellow students, I applied to CSUB as a safety net school, however I did not envision myself actually attending here for university. After having a chat with my parents, we decided that CSUB would be the best school for me to attend in order to get my education in a cost effective manner. They say that everything happens for a reason and reflecting back on my time here; I can see how CSUB was the right choice for me.
My parents moved away from Bakersfield the summer before I started school and moving into the residential halls was a big step for me. It was nerve-wracking at first, but the advisors and staff quickly made the dorm community feel like a home away from home for me. I soon felt that this communal feeling theme was at the heart of the university. You can see it reflected in the bright posters encompassing the Dorothy Donahue hallway, in the various clubs and organizations that make stations on the quad in front of the Student Union and in the interactions between the faculty and counselors who help students with both education and personal life problems. CSUB does a wonderful job of making its students feel intrigued and involved from the time they set foot on campus to the time that they leave its paved walkways on graduation day. Its faculty and administrators provide students with a zone of comfort and stability that makes each student feel like more than just a number in the system, but rather a family member whose thoughts and ideas are valued and vital to the university.
CSUB makes a point to give its students, alumni and related parties resources in the community that will provide a positive impact on the rest of their lives. With lifetime enrollment into the Runnerlink career system, CSUB students and alumni are able to gain access to exclusive positions and careers available with reputable organizations in the Bakersfield area. From its Hawk Honors Program that incorporates the best and brightest freshman and transfer students who in turn take communal courses designed to foster creativity and leadership both on campus and off, to its Division 1 athletics program, CSUB offers something for everyone. The institution encourages all of its students to thoroughly immerse themselves into the Runner Lifestyle: a culture that is irreplaceable.
The bonds and relationships that I have made with my peers and the faculty here are ones that I will cherish for the rest of my life. As my time here at CSUB ends and I begin the process of a bittersweet parting with the entity that’s played a central portion of my life for the past three years, I’m filled with a sense of sentimentality. I’ll miss interacting with the people and friends that I’ve made while attending this stellar university, but I know that I can always come back and visit. As I walk across that blue graduation stage in June and shake President Horace Mitchell’s hand, I can finally say: once a runner, always a runner.