For this weeks activity, I really wanted to do something out of the box. Something dangerous and something that involves a lot of skill… After deep and heavy consideration, I came up with the idea of invading another campus. My goal for this activity was to blend in and observe the life of a student from a different university. My options were, UCLA, USC, CSULA, Cypress Community College, Cerritos Community College, and Biola. After generating my choices in a “spinning wheel” app, it landed on Biola! Biola is a private Christian university in La Mirada. I have no connection with Biola, not even one friend… but with that fear, I was even more motivated to spend a day at Biola blending in as a student.
I started my day off at 2 p.m. after grabbing some lunch. I presumed with finding a seat in their student lounge area with my laptop and backpack to disguise myself. I put a movie on to make it seem like I was occupied while majority of the time I was people watching. I realized that Biola was a bit more lively. Biola’s campus is really small, which made it seem like everyone knew each other. I noticed a specific person wandering from group to group while being greeted everywhere he went. I was both shocked and amused to see that a campus could be so united. Compared to Long Beach, Long Beach is more mellow and independent where from my observation Biola is more alive and ecstatic. I continued by walking around the campus and just enjoying their garden, artworks, and gym. They have a small but very functional gym with weights, treadmills, and an indoor basketball court not too far away.
For my last goal before I left the campus, I wanted to meet a student of Biola. I met a girl name Sophia Paik who was just doing some work in the student lounge. I exposed my true identity as a CSULB student and asked her if I could ask her some easy questions. She was really easy to talk to and almost seemed eager to hear my questions. I asked questions like why did you choose Biola, what do you love/hate about Biola, Etc. She mentioned that Biola is like a small town, everyone knows of each other whether you like it or not. Even if by chance you don’t know someone, you’ll definitely run into them at least three times per day. But she loves that Biola is a home to Christians from around the world. She explained that she met a friend who’s parent’s were missionaries in Indonesia, so the stories she’s heard from him were amazing and encouraging to hear. That kind of opportunity seemed amazing and after talking to her for awhile, I left Biola realizing that it’s so different from CSULB. Apart from being a Christian University, the main thing that I envied was how united the campus was. But more than anything though, CSULB will be my home always and I can’t leave my precious Rec Center that we are blessed with at Long Beach.