Sunday, May 22, 2022

Take a breath, to relieve your stress

Hey everyone, it's Rei!

We are nearing the end of school! I hope the semester has been going well so far with all of you! This is the time of the year where we are all feeling dead or are looking forward to finals. As a student who has experienced three final weeks here, I would like to share a bit of advice with you all that has worked for me in the past.

1. Don't Procrastinate

Without a doubt, my first advice should be about Procrastination. Procrastinating on studying is quite natural and common in college life. Some students (often upper-class students) brag about staying up all night, others go into "panic mode," etc. Some people get it right, others don't. But the harsh reality is that procrastination leads to not as satisfying scores. Rushing to work on a procrastinated assignment or study guide right before the due date is one of the most stressful activities in the world. Keep in mind that time is limited, so start everything as early as possible! Nothing is too early to start.

2. Write stuff down

An ideal aspect for a successful college student has a list of tasks to complete. By writing everything down, you transfer what has been weighing on your mind onto paper. Seeing what needs to be done physically helps you keep track of it; creating a to-do list allows you to actively cross off each item as you complete it. I personally feel so good when I finished my task and draw a check mark every time ✅.

3. Get some fresh air

As a college student, there are so many things you have to do that it is easy to get jaded quickly. Time seems to flow like sand. At such times, just getting up and taking a walk or feeling the warmth of the sun can help you clear your mind of what is in front of you. A breath of fresh air can help you resolve to take another breath and return to what you are working on or studying with a clear mind and fresh eyes. I like to go for a walk on campus with my friends! 

4. Study outside!

Staying indoors increases the stress and frustration of final exams. Especially during these busy final exam times, it's time to change up where you study! I like to study at a cafe, therefore here are some recommendations of some of my favorite places to study where it's not too loud and has some good food and beverages!
  • ONIT cafe @Federal way
  • Coffee Kitchen @Lakewood
  • Garfield 208 @Parkland 

These are just a few considerations to keep in mind during the last week of school! Finish strong!

Until next time,

Friday, May 13, 2022

5 Things to do in the Summer in Tacoma!

Hi everyone! 

With summer only being a few weeks away, I figured it was time for some tips on what to do in our area during your summer break! Washington is really a versatile state with lots to offer, and here are just some of them: 

Mt. Rainier National Park - 50 miles away from Campus 

We can see Mt. Rainier all the way from Campus, even though she's 50 miles away! Summer is a great time to take an hour's drive over to the national park and see her close-up. The Nisqually entrance is the closest entrance to campus! There are numerous trails to pick from - if you're wanting a shorter hike, there's the Nisqually Vista trail of 1.2 miles, or if you want the most scenic hike, the Skyline Trail to Panorama Point is rated one of the best hikes in Mt. Rainier National Park. It is 6.2 miles, and if you want some more detailed information on this route, take a look here. There are also different waterfalls you can go to, including Myrtle Falls and Narada Falls. Lastly, if you want some scenic views while eating, visit Summit House Restaurant - Washington's highest elevation restaurant where you eat with a view of Mt. Rainier's peak. Remember: never go on a hike unprepared! Pack plenty of water and snacks, and dress according to the weather. It's better to bring layers that you can take off rather than being cold. 

Visit Seattle - 42 miles away from Campus 

We are really fortunate to live so close to the city of Seattle, where the options are endless! After less than an hour, you'll be in the heart of Seattle where you can explore the Pikes Place Market, visit the first Starbucks cafe, visit the Space Needle observation deck to get a good view of the city, go to a concert, or watch a game! One of my personal favorites is renting electrical scooters that you can find all over the city and ride around - those things can take you pretty far! I once rode on those from the space needle all the way over to pikes place market, parked it, and went exploring in the market! They are faster than walking, more fun than driving (traffic in Seattle is pretty bad), and cheaper than Uber! 

Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium -  16 miles away from Campus 

You're never too old to go to a zoo! This is the only place in the Pacific North West that has a zoo and aquarium combined, where you will be able to see sharks, penguins, lions, and peacocks all in the same place. Tickets are only $20 if you buy them online, and spend your day walking around the park, getting up close and personal with wild-life animals. Plus, there is a great view of Mt. Rainier and the puget sound. The park is really close to Ruston Way, where you can walk around and enjoy the ocean breeze after a long day at the zoo. 

Ruston Way Park -  13 miles away from Campus 

Ruston Way Park is one of my personal favorites. It's a quick 20-minute drive from campus, with small business shops located right at the waterfront. In the summer, they have a farmers market where you can buy locally produced items like fruits and veggies, or handmade art. I enjoy walking by the waterfront and sitting down where they have a big art piece on the concrete of Washington State. You'll see street artists play music, painters getting inspiration from the scenery, and people riding around on bikes (that you can also rent and ride along the waterfront, btw). Spending time in Ruston is such a simple pleasure. 

Visit a Museum! 

There is a range of museums available in our area, all for different interests! Listed below are just some of them: 

  • Washington State History Museum (9.3 miles away from Campus)
  • LeMay - America's Car Museum  (9.6 miles away from Campus)
  • Tacoma Art Museum  (9.5 miles away from Campus)
  • Museum of Glass  (9.7 miles away from Campus)
  • Chihuly Garden and Glass  (41 miles away from Campus)
  • Seattle Art Museum (39 miles away from Campus)
  • Museum of Pop Culture (42 miles away from Campus)
  • National Nordic Museum (45 miles away from Campus)
  • Museum of History and Industry (40 miles away from Campus) 
  • The museum of Flight (32 miles away from Campus)

A lot of museums offer student discounts, and some even let you in for free - including the Tacoma Museum of Glass. All of these museums have great reviews, so take a look and see what may interest you! 

I hope this inspired you to make some trips this summer and explore what our area has to offer! But, until then - Good luck on your finals everyone! 

~ Silje 

Sunday, April 24, 2022

Earth Day 2022!

Hey everyone, it's Rei!

April 22nd was Earth Day! Yay! It is a day to think about the earth and the environment, and to appreciate our beautiful natural environment. Since I am taking the Conservation of the Natural Resources class, I just learned something about our planet, and I would like to share some ideas about Earth Day and how to celebrate the day. The day itself has passed, but it is okay to celebrate at any time, no matter when!

History & Purpose of Earth Day

Earth Day was first proposed by UNESCO in 1969. The following year, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson called for a "rally to discuss environmental issues" and declared April 22, the day the rally was held, to be Earth Day.

There is no set format or rules for Earth Day. Each person is free to act according to his or her own ideas. If you think about the Earth and the environment even a little, and get involved in an activity that you can related to, no matter how big or small, you can call it an Earth Day-like activity.

3 Ideas for the Earth Day

1. Plant something!

Trees have many benefits, including not only keeping you cool (together they can lower city temperatures  up to 10 degrees), but also cleaning the air and producing lots of oxygen. Plant one beside a sunny window in your dorm or in garden in your house. Planting your own fruits and vegetables is also good for your health and saves you a few trips to the grocery stores and reduces fossil fuel emissions. I have fake plants in my room right now because sometimes I am lazy to water them, but I should use this as an opportunity to grow a real plants.

2. Join some clubs!

GREAN (Grass Roots Environmental Action Now) is one of the student clubs that organizes environmentally conscious activities. The club held a special event called "Invasive Species Removals" for the Earth Day. In addition, the club is involved in a variety of other environmental initiatives on a regular basis. The group holds meetings for students on Thursday nights at 6:00 pm in Hong 246A!

πŸ“Birrieria Tijuana Lakewood

3. Appreciate the beauty and wonder of our planet              

    Most important!!               

It is a good opportunity to think about and appreciate the planet and all that is in it what we are able to live on now. I went out for Mexican food (pictures below) and had tacos filled with vegetables, and we realized how amazing the earth is for being able to grow such a wide variety of vegetables!

I hope the information above is helpful! The theme for Earth Day 2022 was "Invest in Our Planet." It can seem challenging to work on sustainability as an individual, but all it takes to make an investment is to continually move forward. Let's use this as an opportunity to gradually choose to be sustainable. And when you feel you've made it, move to the next step!      
-- Rei

Friday, April 8, 2022

Spring Break Recap

 Hi everyone, it's Silje

Spring break ended this week, and while it is good to be back in routines and see people on campus again, I would be lying if I said that having a week off school wasn't much needed... And in honor of being back to reality, I figured I should have a little spring break recap! 

I started off spring break at the Seattle airport, headed over to California for a long weekend! My boyfriend's family lives down there so we figured that this would be the best time to go see them for longer than just a couple of days. We landed in Sacramento pretty late in the evening so we just drove an hour over to Vallejo, and went straight to bed. The first morning, we did a little tour around Vallejo (it was my first time there!) where we grabbed some lunch on First St. in Benicia, Mare Island, I had In-n-Out burger for the first time, and we went to see some of his friends and family to catch up. 

On the second day, we woke up bright and early at 5.30 AM to head over to the Mountains in Lake Tahoe! Lake Tahoe has multiple ski resorts (I had no idea you could go skiing in California), so we spent most of our day up in North Star skiing and snowboarding with his friends and family. It was bizarre going skiing in 60-degree weather - we even ended up getting sunburnt! On the way back, we drove around Lake Tahoe to get some pretty views in before the day was up.         

 On our third day, Sunday, we spent the first part of our day on a Good Guys car show! It was really cool - they had a market with random things you could buy, all from small nicknacks, posters, cool traffic signs like a Route 66 sign, and car parts. On the other side of the car show, there were old, authentic cars from as far back as the 60s. Some of them were original and really well kept, and others were completely redone with new paint and custom designs. After the car show, we went to his house for a good-old game night. 

On our last day, Monday, we spent the day going out to lunch and dinner with his friends and family before we had to pack up and leave (sadly). 

For the rest of spring break, nothing too exciting happened - we went out to a couple bars with a few friends, we went shooting at a shooting range, and took a quick trip to IKEA for some small necessities before school went back into session. 

That's all for now, folks! 

Until next time, 


Wednesday, March 9, 2022

My experience playing Lacrosse!

Hi all, Silje here! 

I haven't talked to you guys in a while! A lot has happened since Thanksgiving when I last wrote, including going home to Norway over Christmas, a hectic J-term, preparing at the office for our new international students that arrived in February and Spring semester. But, good news; spring semester also means lacrosse season! For those of you that might not know, I played lacrosse during my high school exchange year in Colorado and fell in love with the sport. The second I decided to go to PLU, I knew that I wanted to pick up my lacrosse stick again and play during my three years here. This is my second season with PLU and I am having such a great time with the team at practice and games. Since lacrosse season is, unfortunately, coming to an end in a couple weeks, I am gonna tell you a little bit about my experience with playing sports in college and I'm gonna include some sports and club sports that you can look into playing here at PLU as well! 
Headed to Idaho for a tournament against University
of Idaho and Portland State! (6+ hour road trip)

As I said earlier, I played lacrosse for the first time ever during my senior year of high school as an exchange student. They don't have lacrosse in Norway, so I think that is why I was so interested in trying it, and I am glad I did. I was terrified for my first practice last year because I hadn't played in so long but it went well! I remembered more than I thought I would and most of my skills came back rather quickly. Lacrosse practices are 4 times a week for 2 hours in the evening, and weekends are off unless we have a game. During our off-weekends, we sometimes do team bondings: before Christmas, we had a Christmas party together where we did Secret Santa, we have gotten together to watch other schools play and we also had a Halloween party! 

Idaho tournament
We have played multiple universities this season, including the University of Idaho and Montana State University. This means that we got to travel! Traveling with the team is really fun and you really get to know each other better on a 6-hour road trip + overnight stays in a hotel. At first, I was worried that participating in a sport would be really expensive because of the trips but we had fundraisers before the season where we worked at the Harry Styles Concert and the Seahawks football game (a lot of fun) so that we could raise money to cover our travel expenses for our games out of state. The season is coming to an end in about two weeks, but we still have three more games coming up that we are really excited for; one game in Portland, and two home games here at PLU - Wish us luck! 

After the game against Montana State University
(Notice the snow...)
At PLU, lacrosse is a club sport, which means that there are no official try-outs and a lot of the players might be brand new to the sport. There are also varsity sports teams at PLU, for example soccer or basketball, where they require you to have experience and where you need to try out before the coaches decide if you will make the team or not. If you aren't too familiar with sports, want to try out a completely new sport, or have something a little lower time commitment then a club sport is the way to go. Currently, the club sports at PLU are: Men's wrestling, women's wrestling, men's lacrosse, women's lacrosse (highly recommend), men's rowing (women's rowing is a varsity sports team here), men's ultimate frisbee, and women's ultimate frisbee. 

In addition to club sports, PLU offers a variety of interest clubs for example business clubs, investing clubs, or even a Rubik's cube club. I always tell new students to look into the different sports and clubs and to join any that sounds interesting because it is a great way to meet new people and make friends with similar interests as you. 

Delayed at Bozeman Airport, Montana

I hope this sparked some interest in checking out the different clubs and maybe trying out a new sport or hobby! 

Until next time, 

~ Silje

Friday, February 11, 2022

Guest Blogger: Meet Tina from Norway!

Hi everyone! 

My name is Tina and I'm from LΓΈrenskog, Norway. I study business with a concentration in management and HR here at PLU. Choosing the right school for your major isn't always easy and it definitely wasn’t for me. Some of the reasons why I chose PLU was because it is a small school and has small class sizes, amazing people as well as all the wonderful places that Washington state has to offer. I've always known that I wanted to study in the states, and PLU is ranked one of the best business schools in the Pacific North West. I noticed right away that our professors are very eager for us to succeed and do everything they can for us to learn both in and outside the classroom. They want to prepare us for the market in 10-20 years, not only what is happening in the world right now. The business curriculum is mostly designed around soft skills, meaning how we build insight inquiries, how we're able to connect the dots.

I had never been to Washington state before, so I was surprised to see how much it felt like home. The nature is very similar and there are lots of Scandinavian stores around the state! My school is located in Tacoma, which is only 30-40 minutes from both Seattle and Bellevue and only 3 hours from Canada. We have beautiful mountains here, like Mt. Rainier. Here you can go skiing, walk in gorgeous nature or walk around the national park. A little over 3 hours northeast is a small place called Leavenworth. This place is a Bavarian-styled village built in the Cascade mountains. On the west coast we have a well known beach called La Push, this is where several movies have been made but the most known one would be the Twilight movies. I've been to most of these places already, and they are all places I would love to show my family when they come to visit me! 

For me studying in the states has been amazing! I have gotten so many new friends from both all over the country and the world. I celebrated thanksgiving for the first time and that was so much fun! I went with one of my friends to their hometown in Nebraska and I got to experience a D1 football game for the first time and see a whole new and very different state! D
uring Christmas I got to see a good friend in New York, and during summer break I went home with one of the girls to her home in Hawaii. So the experiences and memories we create here are so much bigger than just the state your school is located in! PLU also has many Scandinavian students, the school is founded by Norwegian immigrants and we have some professors who speak Norwegian. This is always fun and it helps you stay connected to home. Some advice I would give to you who might think of coming to PLU, just do it! I'm so happy I did and so will you!

~ Tina

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Next guest post: Bryan is back πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘

 Hello Hello!!! It's Chau again 😁


I hope you have a wonderful J-term or great break for everyone who doesn't have class this term. Back to our blog post this week, our guest blog is BRYAN!!!πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘. We had a Q&As interview with Bryan and I asked him a few questions about his experiences before and after graduating from PLU.


Let's get to know about Bryan:  

Bryan and his girlfriend- cute couple 😍

        "Hi guys, my name is Bryan. I am a recent (like 2021 recent) graduate of the PLU nursing program, and I'm also an international student from China. I used to work at the International student service, and I've posted quite some blog posts. I'm currently working in a skilled nursing facility as a floor nurse."  


What made you choose PLU as opposed to other colleges in the US to pursue your academic goal?

The main reason that I chose PLU was the nursing program. PLU has one of the most renowned nursing programs in the area. Even after graduating, many patients of mine knew about PLU and were surprised that I graduated from the school. On top of that. PLU offers scholarships to many international students, and it makes tuition more affordable for international students. Even though PLU is a private school, the scholarship makes it cheaper than attending public schools such as UW.

Why do you want to become a nurse?

(I got asked this question so many times in the interview for jobs that I think I should know the perfect answer to this, but I still don't LOL) I originally chose to be a nurse because I didn't want an office job, and I didn't like typing essays and doing paperwork. Nursing currently has high demand in the US (and around the world too), which makes finding jobs easy and makes the paycheck looks good. As I learn more and more about nursing, I found it more and more interesting. There are so many clinical skills to learn and the knowledge is so applicable to daily life. The school of nursing also teaches you to care for your patients not only physically but also mentally. I found this to be especially true after I started working as a nurse. Many times, the patient just needs some reassurance to perform well in care. 
 How have clinical experiences at PLU helped to prepare you for your career?
The clinical experiences at PLU offer you a variety of experiences--from the medical-surgical unit, pediatrics, mental health, and labor and delivery! I've learned numerous skills from each clinical rotation that allows students to not only develop their critical thinking skills on the floor but also apply the knowledge we learn in the classroom to real-life situations. 
 Please share with us a memorable patient care experience from your clinical or your current workplace.
A memorable clinical experience that I had included a patient who was nearing the end of their life and placed on comfort care. This means that only their vitals were taken and pain medication was given to them to help alleviate the pain that they were going through from their disease. The patient requested spiritual care and the priest offered a communion for the patient and his wife who was in the room. As they were going through communion, the couple started recalling their first date together in Nevada. At this moment, both of them started crying and it was a beautiful and vulnerable moment that I am forever grateful that they allowed me to experience together with them. 
What do you find challenging about nursing? 
One major challenge about nursing is burnout. This is especially true for nurses who work back to back 12 hours shifts. Numerous individuals see the paycheck that a nursing career offers; however, they also have to realize the amount of hard work and effort that goes into caring for multiple patients on a floor. This may mean helping a family go through the grieving process after a loved one has passed away, advocating for patient safety when a physician prescribes a medication that is not necessary and making sure that the patient has a holistic experience at the hospital. Nurses balance numerous roles within the healthcare field and it can quickly lead to burnout for numerous individuals. 
Please share some tips or advice for our current nursing students and/or future international students who are interested in PLU! 
The hardest part for me after obtaining my nursing license was finding a job. The majority of the hospitals in the area will require you to sign a contract to work for them for at least 2 years before they employ you. This is mainly due to the expensive training process that nurses have to go through before they can work on the floor. Yet, as an international student, you only have one year after graduation (OPT) to legally work in the U.S., which means you pretty much won't be able to work in any major hospitals. In addition, it's hard for you to obtain work experience prior to graduating since CPT is the only way you can legally work outside of campus. All this means that nursing careers for international students require detailed planning ahead of time and realistic expectations. It's never too early to start thinking ahead! 

Please feel free to add something that you would like to share with us!  

"As a side note, Bryan is an amazing nurse and I think all the grandmas at the facility will agree with me, hehe. He has worked hard these past few years and has gone through numerous obstacles to get to where he is now. I am proud of him and all the things he has accomplished! So focus on the bold and you'll do great my fellow international students!" -His girlfriend 😍😘


And that is the interview with our second guest blogger! Thank Bryan and his girlfriend for their time and wish them the best with their life and career! πŸ’–πŸ€