Friday, November 18, 2005

Checking out college and career

I have gotten back into my research using the resources the career counselor gave me. I had taken some assessments but that was all. So I actually looked at some careers on Eureka (, which is a great site, plus I did some more assessments. Then I finally went to, the official website for transfer students in the state. Cal State Long Beach looked promising in terms of courses transferring (some other places looked good, but a lot of the lower-division courses didn't have matching courses at Mira Costa that I could take to get them out of the way before transferring) so I went to the website, via CSUMentor, a site with info on the Cal State system (CSU stands for California State University, but most people call CSU campuses "Cal State" for short).

I mainly looked up the English and History majors, since those are my top two interests and my best subjects. I was fascinated with the school's history program. They have very interesting senior seminars, including one just on the Holocaust. I guess they must have a big Jewish community in that area. Hmm. There is the Simon Weisenthal Center in L.A. (I just did a lookup) plus the Museum of Tolerance, which has a large Holocaust section, is in Torrance, which I think is in that general area. There's also the L.A. Holocaust Monument. There's also a History Honors Society at the school, Phi Alpha Theta.

The English department page didn't have quite as much info, but it still looked good. If I wanted to be a writer but major in History, they have a Creative Writing minor, where you can take a class in a bunch of specific topics, including Arthurian Literature! What fun that would be.

The problem is I might be required to take the Creative Writing course Mira Costa offers, and it's only on Wednesdays (reminds me of the book Libby on Wednesday...her writing group met on Wednesdays) and I usually work on Wednesdays.

That's why I never took the class before, because of work. I've been working basically since my second semester of college (well, since March 2004, which was near the beginning of my second semester). I'm in my fifth semester. Technically, I have gone to junior college longer than the expected two years. By the end of next spring it will have been 3 years, and if I have to do major prep, it will probably be longer. Not I don't like school. But after a while you sort of want to be out of college.

At any rate, Cal State Long Beach sounds promising. It's close to the beach, which is nice cause I like the beach, and even though I live near it now, I don't get down there enough. (Then again, the city is called Long Beach, right?) It's close to quite a few attractions, like Disneyland. I think there are a lot of museums in the area, too (but if I am a history major they'll probably make us visit a lot of them anyway). I'd love to go to the Huntington Gardens and the Getty (John Paul Getty Museum) again, which are both in that general area. (We didn't get to see much of the art at the Huntington when we went there on a field trip cause our bus driver got lost and we were an hour late for our tour). I also want to see this one painting that is supposed to be at the Getty that I saw a picture of in my art history book. I forgot who it's by.

I am going to look at a few others. I had looked at Cal State East Bay before (f.k.a. Cal State Hayward Hills). At least I feel like I am going in the right direction. Maybe God is answering my prayers after all, by motivating me to research this using the resources I have obtained to find a major. They say "heaven helps those who help themselves," but as a Christian who learned about depending on God and stuff like that, I never thought that saying was true.

As for other stuff, I just read a book Mum had given me a while back called What to Do When You Don't Know What to Do. It's by two of her favorite authors and speakers, Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. They have written a lot of other books, together and separately, including the well-known Boundaries and its various "sequels" (if they can be called that) like Boundaries in Dating (which I have). They are like the main guys when it comes to Christian counseling books.

Anyway, the book outlines 8 principles for, as the title suggests, "what to do when you don't know what to do." I found it rather interesting, but I think I have to read it again to get something to jump out at me.

I have figured out God must be telling me to work on prayer. I mean, just seeing something about this pop up once is one thing, and having it happen twice can be dismissed as a coincidence. But four times in one week I have heard or read about this subject! First in relation to making prayerful decisions about dating in the talk at the Jordan last Sunday. Then when I went to Intervarsity (as I wrote in the last entry) the talk was about Hannah and about praying about tough times. Then when reading the Cloud and Townsend book, they quoted the verse in James that says "If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him." Then last night, when I had to go with my Growth Group to the "Big Event" at church (an event relating to our church's building campaign) Pastor Larry said we should prayerfully consider donating to the project.

It's not that I haven't been praying. We pray a lot at work. But I don't pray a lot by myself or in other settings. Though I prayed to God to help me figure out how to put the new audio Bibles on the shelf and make it look shoppable, and I was able to. I didn't say those exact words (it was more like God please help me do this) but it did work.

I wonder if I am afraid of prayer. I ought not to be. But maybe I am. I mean, I didn't have that much trouble with it before Grandma died, the situation with Kyle, the pressures of high school, and Gran's death. Not as much anyway.

One of the songs we sang last night at the "Big Event" says: "I am a friend of God. I am a friend of God. I am a friend of God. He calls me friend...I am a friend of God. I am a friend of God. I am a friend of God. You call me friend." I have heard this song in the store too but never thought much of it.

Ok this is getting too heady. I need to stop for a while.

No work or school today, so I have a day off, but I do have to go to this fundraising banquet tonight for the homeless shelter my mom volunteers with (she's chairman of the board) cause my mom wants all of us to come. I'm not too thrilled about it, to be honest, but since she insisted I go, I'll go and make the best of it.

Oh...update on the Thanksgiving situation. (Or "sitch," as Kim Possible would say). The good news is we're all driving up there together, which means not having to deal with just me and my brother both ways. Then I think my brother and I are driving back Friday cause both of us have to work Saturday. But I only have to work from opening to 2pm on Saturday, which is like 4 hours. That's good, cause 1) with the sale the place will probably be a madhouse (like with the last sale) and so I wouldn't want to work all day and 2) since I get off early I can get myself home, which is good cause my parents will still be up in Lone Pine with my grandpa (they're staying an extra day).

I also get paid right before the sale (next Tuesday), which means maybe I can get some Christmas shopping done early. I need to ask what people want for Christmas and who I have to shop for outside my family (sometimes we give whole-family gifts to our relatives and sometimes not, and I might get something for Amy too...I wouldn't have to get things for my colleagues if I don't want to, cause we're having a gift exchange at the Christmas party anyway).

Ok I really need to stop writing. I haven't had lunch yet.

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