Another year has come to an end! And what a crazy one it has been. I feel like I was in this spot last year just yesterday. Crazy to think about how much has happened since I left my freshman year from summer staff, to Costa Rica, and to all the new friendships I’ve made this past year. Sophomore year at Loma will definitely be one that I will never forget. 
I leave for Yosemite in about one month to work there for the summer and then I’ll be right back at PLNU to start my JUNIOR year there. A junior in college?! Don’t know quite when that happened. One of my friends from high school that also goes to Loma graduated yesterday and I can’t even believe it. I can still remember walking through our high school together like it was yesterday! I guess I just don’t feel old enough to be a junior in college. 
This last semester here has been absolutely fantastic. Although a rough transition to start coming back from Costa Rica, it really picked up and I met some amazing people. I definitely learned that even though I was four semesters in, it still wasn’t too late to make even more strong friendships and I’m so thankful for that. 
Next year will be different but really good! Some friends will be living off campus, many people that were abroad will all be back, and I’ll be living in an on campus apartment with some friends!
All in all, I’m so thankful for these past two years at Point Loma. The people I’ve met and the experiences I’ve had have all made me change in ways I never imagined possible. Point Loma is definitely different than a big school experience but I think that because of that I’ve made even stronger relationships and it’s been absolutely amazing. So crazy that I have two years down, and I’m so excited to see where these next two take me. 
Have a great summer!
Claire

Another year has come to an end! And what a crazy one it has been. I feel like I was in this spot last year just yesterday. Crazy to think about how much has happened since I left my freshman year from summer staff, to Costa Rica, and to all the new friendships I’ve made this past year. Sophomore year at Loma will definitely be one that I will never forget. 

I leave for Yosemite in about one month to work there for the summer and then I’ll be right back at PLNU to start my JUNIOR year there. A junior in college?! Don’t know quite when that happened. One of my friends from high school that also goes to Loma graduated yesterday and I can’t even believe it. I can still remember walking through our high school together like it was yesterday! I guess I just don’t feel old enough to be a junior in college. 

This last semester here has been absolutely fantastic. Although a rough transition to start coming back from Costa Rica, it really picked up and I met some amazing people. I definitely learned that even though I was four semesters in, it still wasn’t too late to make even more strong friendships and I’m so thankful for that. 

Next year will be different but really good! Some friends will be living off campus, many people that were abroad will all be back, and I’ll be living in an on campus apartment with some friends!

All in all, I’m so thankful for these past two years at Point Loma. The people I’ve met and the experiences I’ve had have all made me change in ways I never imagined possible. Point Loma is definitely different than a big school experience but I think that because of that I’ve made even stronger relationships and it’s been absolutely amazing. So crazy that I have two years down, and I’m so excited to see where these next two take me. 

Have a great summer!

Claire


Another great vacation from school over Easter break!

Being far from home can have drawbacks sometimes, especially when you can’t go home for holidays that you normally spend with family. Luckily, one of my best friends only lives about an hour away and her mom, dad, grandma, and brother have become like a second family for me out here which I’m so incredibly blessed by. Even if you aren’t from as far as Minnesota, some people who live in NorCal still live really far from San Diego so it’s awesome to have these friendships with people who live close by. 

Over Easter we got to go paddle boarding in the harbor in Dana Point one day and it was a blast! One of my friends who also lives there has a bunch of paddle boards and he took us out one day, in the calm water of course. And I only fell once! Not too bad. I’ve done it back home before but those were more stable boards. We also just spend a lot of time laying out in the sun at the beach right outside her house and hit around a volleyball as seen in the first picture. It was relaxing, and a good time with good friends and great family. I don’t know what I would do if they weren’t there!

Although you’ll have friends from all over, it seems like you tend to get to know the families that live the closest to San Diego, and it’s so fun. 

This is our last week before finals and then I’m back to MN for a month before I leave to come back to this wonderful state to work in a summer camp at Yosemite for a few months. I feel like I’m not ready to leave campus because I’ve only been back for a semester but at the same time I haven’t been home since early January so I can’t wait to see everyone back there. 

Weather is supposed to be 80’s and sunny all week, perfect way to end the semester. Unfortunately, class gets in the way of that beach time. 

I hope everyone is enjoying spring, wherever that may be for you.

Claire


Sunsets and Involvement.

Two things I need to do more of at Point Loma. Watch the beautiful sunsets we have access to over the ocean every night, and get involved in extracurricular activities. 

I’d like to say that if I lived down in Young Hall (the sophomore dorms closest to the beach) I would watch the sunset more….but regardless of where you are on campus you’re likely to be steps away from a nice sunset view and I rarely take advantage of it. Especially in the whirlwind of finals approaching, I need to remind myself to take a break from the homework and studying, step outside, and really take in the creativeness God paints for us in these sunsets. I live in one of the most beautiful places to do this, and yet I get caught up in day to day activities that cause me to forget to take a breather sometimes. Here’s a picture of the sky one night I was in the library and looked up to the windows and saw the sky glowing. I went outside and snapped this, but the picture doesn’t even do it justice. The best ones are down on the cliffs too. Another thing I would like to do more of is community involvement and activities outside of school. I still lead a group of middle schoolers for Young Life, but adding some variety is so great too. Last weekend I helped and volunteered at the San Diego Special Olympics which was on PLNU’s track field as a cheerleader and it was SO great, and SO inspiring. We were there for most of the morning and early afternoon and seeing this kids filled with such joy as they competed filled me with so much happiness. No matter what I’m doing, my last two years at Point Loma I want to be able to serve and give back to a community that has done so much for me. Here’s a pic of my friend Abi and me at the Special Olympics!

Wherever you live or go to school, it’s important to not take advantage of the beauty and community that’s around you. I know how much I appreciate going back home to Minnesota and taking in the beauty that God’s created for me there. Things I never even noticed before I moved away. Hopefully you all had a great Easter, I’ll try and post about my weekend in the next few days. Happy Spring!

Claire


Q
Love your blog/writing :) I was wondering how small classes are? and generally how small the school is? I would love to go to a college that is small, that way I find it easier to connect with other kids on campus and am able to be familiar with most of the students on campus.
Anonymous
A

Thank you!!

Class sizes really depend on the type of class it is. I have a lit class with about 40 students because it’s a general, and a class for my major that only has 13. The higher up you get in your major the smaller the classes will be, but I don’t think I’ve had a class with more than 40 students! It’s really nice because then you really get to know the professors more and form relationships with them. They can give you one on one help if you need it and since they have the ability to get to know you more some can even become mentors. I’m not sure exact numbers for undergrad students here, but I believe it’s around 2400. Admissions would know more but in general, it’s a decently small school. I really like that because the community here at Loma is unlike most campuses I toured and since you know a lot of students here, there’s always people in the caf or library or even new classes each semester that you know. Hope this helps!!

Claire


About three weeks have passed since my last blog post, which is another reminder of how I’m slacking on the updates. In my defense, we had spring break in there…..so that’s like a free week, right? Right. March has been a crazy good month, and I can’t believe we’re down to our last month. But it seems like every time I write I can’t believe how quickly time is passing, but I guess that’s growing up. It seems like every month and year goes by faster and faster. Since I came in with 18 college credits from high school, I’m technically a junior credit-wise….which means I could be over half way done with my college career. THAT’S INSANE. One of my friends from high school who also goes to Loma is graduating this spring and I can remember walking the halls of our high school so clearly a few short years ago, or so it seems. The more I realize how quickly time passes, the more I want to make the most of my time. I think this semester I’m doing a pretty good job of that. 

My mom came out for spring break because the school she teaches at also had the same spring break and it was SO. GREAT. So good to see her. We’re so close, and to be able to show her the city and explore other places in Southern CA for a week and just relax was the best, and much needed. We went to Santa Barbara for a few days, spent a day in SLO, and then came back down to San Diego for the rest of the week. Right now my best friend from MN is also here for her spring break and it’s another great week, unfortunately the weather is horrible and I still have to go to class. In addition to those visits, another friend is coming out to SD to look at USD in a few weeks. I’m so happy I’m finally getting visitors out here, and I welcome it. 

 Besides having so many people from home here, Ive been keeping busy at Point Loma and I’ve really been trying to see more of San Diego. I had a chance to go to Balboa Park and it was gorgeous! I was luckily in the mood to see museums that day, so it was a good choice. Even if I didn’t go into all of the museums there, walking around and seeing the buildings was really cool. I’ve also made it down to Seaport Village and Gaslamp a few times which has been good people watching, and a good chance to buy some Ghirardelli chocolate and check out some cute shops. I’ve realized now that my friend is here for break, if the weather isn’t good (which is rare) then going to the beach is hard….and that’s the best part of San Diego to me personally. We tried to go to Coronado, which is absolutely beautiful, but only lasted an hour before the wind and the blowing sand became too much to handle. 

Being back at Loma after a semester just has really made me thankful for relationships. Thankful for the community that is here, and thankful for a place that I can learn and foster a growing faith. There are ups and downs of every campus, but I’m so happy to call this place home. 

Have a great week!

Claire


How small class sizes and a great professor helped me have the best weekend ever.

How on earth could Point Loma’s class size and professors have an effect on how FANTASTIC my weekend was? You’ll see.

Last year as a freshman I was require to take a writing class as a general and as freshman composition. My friend had recommended that I take the class from Dean Nelson, who is also the head of the journalism department. He is also from Minnesota, so that may have helped my decision to take his class (If you’re a prospective student, definitely take him fro writing. Best teacher I ever had). Anyways, through the semester I got to know him better and he helped my writing so much and actually helped me appreciate writing and not dread an essay or paper due for class. 

I got back from study abroad this spring and saw him on campus and caught up for a few minutes, and told him I was attending the Storyline Conference that was coming to campus with fantastic speakers such as Donald Miller and Bob Goff. Dean helps out with the conference and is good friends with them too! The conference was this weekend and it was SO good! 1700 people from all over the US came and it was definitely worth the ticket. Also part of the conference was a concert with two of my favorite musicians, Ben Rector and Steve Moakler Friday night. 

Friday after chapel I was hanging around because the first session of the conference was about to start and I wanted to get good seats but I realized I forgot my name tag, which I thought I needed to get in. Everyone had pretty much cleared the room but I saw Dean up front so I went up to see if he could help me get a new tag before the session started. As we were leaving, Bob Goff came out on the stage and Dean waved to him as we left. Bob is probably my favorite person ever. We were just walking out and I said to Dean “I can’t believe that was Bob Goff, I’ve never met him before!” and he responded “Well lets go talk to him then!” I was stoked. We turned around and Dean introduced me to Bob, and I was greeted with a big hug and smile and got to talk with Bob for a bit! Truly, I’ve never talked with someone who just gives off so much love like Jesus tells us too. Bob is amazing, and talking for just 5 minutes inspired me to love like that. That was huge for me, and I was so thankful for Dean Nelson!

Later, I knew Ben Rector was probably at Brown Chapel because his show was later and he needed to set up so I stuck around after the session to see if I could see him. Ben is my FAVORITE. I mostly bought the conference ticket to see him in concert. If you see me listening to music, it’s probably his. Anyways, I saw him on stage and then go backstage and realized I needed to get back there somehow to meet him. There were a few girls in the front clearly with the same goal. I went around the corner where you can get to the back of the stage, and as luck would have it, I heard Dean’s voice! Sheepishly, I went up to him asking if Ben was back there and if I could meet him. “Of course! Let’s go find him. ” THANK YOU DEAN. I got to talk with Ben for a little bit too and he was so fantastic. I don’t think Dean realized what that meant to me, but I was so giddy I was shaking. 

The concert was amazing, they put on such a great show. We met one of the Storyline workers who was also friends with Steve Moakler so after the conference we got to meet him and he was kind enough to hang out and chat for a bit. Such a great musician and such a great guy. Ben came out a little after too and I got another picture with him! It was quite a day meeting 3 of my favorite people. 

So yes, I had a great weekend. Honestly I can thank Dean for introducing me to what Storyline is, and for helping me meet some of the most inspirational people. Point Loma is full of professors with amazing connections and they really do care about you! Even the small class size is so helpful because then they can get to know all the students in their class. And because of our location, the most amazing speakers and musicians chose to be here this weekend. Here are some pictures of that day! I still can’t believe it!


The Best Part About Choosing the Right Major.

Who knows if I chose the right major. Honestly, I switch my mind every week wondering if there’s something else I would rather be doing that the MOCM program here. I’ve thought about nursing, education, business, and yes, even meteorology. No laughing. But this semester I finally have 3 classes for my major in the communications department and I LOVE them. I actually don’t want to skip these classes which is a rare feeling for me. Yes, they are all with the same professor (which in some cases could be bad), but luckily she’s super engaging and keeps me really interested in what I’m learning about. I think that’s a sign that I’m in a good program for me, actually enjoying the classes and not dreading that part of school work. I know people in almost every department on campus and Point Loma really does have awesome professors and good class sizes, they don’t make that up! My persuasion class has 14 people….that means that our professor actually gets to know us, can teach on a more personal level, and we actually get out earlier sometimes since it’s so small! So while sometimes I wonder if a small school was the right choice, I know the classes that I’m taking are a huge benefit. 

Last weekend was pretty low key for me here at Loma. After busy weeks of school though it’s nice to be able to just lay low and not do much. The weather has been still a bit chilly so I haven’t been to the beach much, but I went to a drive in movie theater on Saturday night to watch Frozen for the 20th time and it was a blast! We have one in Minnesota but since the warm weather doesn’t last too long it’s not open year round. This one had two screens to play multiple movies and is actually cheaper than the normal theaters! We took my friends truck, lots of blankets and pillows, and made a great night of it. Sunday I went to All Peoples Church which I’ve been going to lately, and I really really enjoy it there. The pastor that has spoke the past few weeks has just done a great job with the message. 

This weekend is good ole Valentine’s Day. I think Friday some girls and I are going to a movie and then bowling or lazer tag after and then Sunday I’m going to the zoo for $7 with the bio department. No, I’m not bio, but you can’t pass up a trip to the zoo for that cheap! So that should be a fun weekend. My next month is pretty busy on the weekends. My mom will be here for two of them and my best friend from MN will be here after she leaves so I’m really excited for March to come!! Before that, I have some papers to finish and midterms to complete so time to buckle down. I can’t believe it’s already time to start thinking about all that. 

Have a great week, and a Happy Valentine’s Day. 

Claire


Grace.

I just finished reading Galatians. It’s funny how God uses the right scripture, right at the perfect time you need it. 

In the past 9 months I’ve experienced a lot of change in my life, change in location, change in my soul. Last May I moved home from Point Loma back to Minnesota. In June I left for a month of working at summer camp with a new group of people. Then I returned to home with a new outlook, but with the same surroundings. In July, I lost a friend which impacted our whole community. September came, and I flew to Costa Rica to live and study there for three months, knowing almost zero Spanish. December 21 arrived and I entered a 100 degree temperature difference in Minnesota after spending months in a tropical rainforest climate. And a few weeks ago, I came full circle and reunited with friends in San Diego. Change. Lots of it. 

I’ve met a lot of new people through these experiences and through these new people and locations, I’ve come to realize that a new me has developed along the way as well.

I’m a people pleaser….that’s probably been my biggest weakness. And I’m sure will always be apart of me. With that comes a need to be accepted. The desire to be accepted typically starts when you’re in a new environment and you want others to like you, at least that’s how it starts for me. This desire causes us to project an image of what we want others to see and to hide our faults and struggles. Being put in new environments? Lucky me! That’s been my life the past year. People will accept you more if only, if only, if only. Each of these times I moved around to new places, I found myself not only having this attitude towards the people, but also with my relationship with God. I felt like since I wanted to earn others acceptance, I would push aside my faith and then feel a need to earn His acceptance back in return once I felt my relationship with God getting too far from me. If only I could live better, pray more, work harder, share the Gospel with more people, give more of my attention to Him, then things might be perfect and I’d be good with God. While all of these things may better me as a person, the great thing I was reminded of tonight is that we are ALREADY accepted in Christ and nothing we do can ever change that. His message frees us from living this life in guilt and because of this we find a fresh assurance in His love for us and a desire to serve Him more because of His grace. Galatians 1:10 says “Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” I want to make sure that my people pleasing ways don’t get in the way of being a servant of Christ. In fact, the more time I spend getting to know Him, the less time I find myself desiring human acceptance. And that is a beautiful thing. 

Transitions are hard. In fact, the hardest transitions I find in my life are ones after I experience strong spiritual awakening. These times in my life were coming home from school, coming home from camp, and coming back to school after everything I experienced in Costa Rica. I’ve found myself these past three weeks back on campus struggling with where I belong now that I’m back. Things definitely feel different from last year, new people and even old friendships feel different than before and that’s never an easy feeling. When I experience things like that, I find myself so consumed and wrapped up in worldly things and how I can adjust into the lives of people here, pushing aside what God wants of me and how I can live my life for Him and not others. But as I was reminded tonight in Paul’s writing, who’s approval do I desire most? Yes, there are constantly cultural pressures surrounding us but the beautiful thing is that we can bring these pressures to God and there is so much freedom in that. (Gal 5:1)

So no matter how much of a struggle change is for us, living life by the Spirit will always bring out good in life. No matter what challenges we’re facing, our faith will always be there and so will God even when it feels like others aren’t. 5:6 says "The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love" and that really spoke to me tonight along with 5:13 "But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather serve one another humbly in love" Although I’m in yet another transition period in my life and sometimes it’s hard to adjust to life here on earth LOVE is what counts. Loving those we find hard to love, loving those we find easy to love. And the more freedom we experience through Christ, the more we are able to express love. By the grace of God I have this freedom and because of that, I’m not going to push that aside and be consumed with worldly acceptance as I move from place to place, but be on fire to live a life in Christ’s image and to do so humbly in love. 

So yes, change is hard, and it’s very easy to get caught up in what others want from you and how you’re expected to behave especially on a college campus or in new environments when you’re not sure the the behavior expectations are. But if we accept the grace given to us, love as God loves us, then changes, transitions, and whatever else you may be dealing with will become a little bit easier. 

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up" 6:9


What’s been the best part of being back so far? GOING TO DISNEYLAND. Not even a question. Last weekend we went up to Anaheim to see my friends family and I thought we would just be going on a long hike and doing homework Saturday but everyone surprised me with a trip to Disneyland! It was my first time ever going and I was so excited I cried. 100 % true.

Besides going to Disneyland, Southern California has a lot to offer. As someone from out of state, I wasn’t really sure what there was to do before I moved here. I found a poster in one of the halls with things that San Diego has to offer so here they are!
Ocean Beach Farmers Market: This is super close to campus and is every Wednesday from 4-8 pm. They have a bunch of local foods, art, and music and it’s a super fun, chill atmosphere if you have a free Wednesday.
Balboa Park: I’ve never actually been here, but I plan on taking my mom when she comes for spring break! It’s a huge, beautiful outdoor park with museums, gardens, outdoor theater, and the zoo is there too! I’ll post pictures once I make it over. 
San Diego Zoo/Sea world: If you have money saved up, head over to one of these animal parks. The safari park has a lot of wild animals which is really cool. Obviously this isn’t a common thing with the high cost, and if you’re from here. But it’s definitely something to check out at least once!
Hiking in Torrey Pines: I just did this last weekend actually! I think what’s considered a hike in California is funny but regardless, it was a good way to get a workout in and still see some nature! As always, there’s a beautiful ocean view. I know there’s other hiking places in the area to check out too.
These are just a few of the things on the poster, but there really is a lot to do here! A lot of the times we stay on campus and don’t get out to do these things but I really want to try more activities while I’m here this semester! There’s plenty of beach days, bonfires, acai runs, movie nights, trips to Gaslamp and more things to do, you just need to take advantage of it.

Have a great week!

Claire

What’s been the best part of being back so far? GOING TO DISNEYLAND. Not even a question. Last weekend we went up to Anaheim to see my friends family and I thought we would just be going on a long hike and doing homework Saturday but everyone surprised me with a trip to Disneyland! It was my first time ever going and I was so excited I cried. 100 % true.

Besides going to Disneyland, Southern California has a lot to offer. As someone from out of state, I wasn’t really sure what there was to do before I moved here. I found a poster in one of the halls with things that San Diego has to offer so here they are!

Ocean Beach Farmers Market: This is super close to campus and is every Wednesday from 4-8 pm. They have a bunch of local foods, art, and music and it’s a super fun, chill atmosphere if you have a free Wednesday.

Balboa Park: I’ve never actually been here, but I plan on taking my mom when she comes for spring break! It’s a huge, beautiful outdoor park with museums, gardens, outdoor theater, and the zoo is there too! I’ll post pictures once I make it over. 

San Diego Zoo/Sea world: If you have money saved up, head over to one of these animal parks. The safari park has a lot of wild animals which is really cool. Obviously this isn’t a common thing with the high cost, and if you’re from here. But it’s definitely something to check out at least once!

Hiking in Torrey Pines: I just did this last weekend actually! I think what’s considered a hike in California is funny but regardless, it was a good way to get a workout in and still see some nature! As always, there’s a beautiful ocean view. I know there’s other hiking places in the area to check out too.

These are just a few of the things on the poster, but there really is a lot to do here! A lot of the times we stay on campus and don’t get out to do these things but I really want to try more activities while I’m here this semester! There’s plenty of beach days, bonfires, acai runs, movie nights, trips to Gaslamp and more things to do, you just need to take advantage of it.

Have a great week!

Claire


Q
Hi! Im thinking about applying to PLNU but I am not sure if I would be able to get in, is it difficult to get into? I only have a 3.3 GPA and a 25 ACT but I have taken multiple AP classes, do you think I could get in?
Anonymous
A

Hi there! I would definitely say apply. I know people that have gotten in with a lower ACT, but not sure what their GPA was. Do the best on your essays in the application, and set up an interview (even over the phone if you can’t come in for one). It doesn’t hurt to apply! Best of luck!