– Maria Florendo B.S. Biology, B.S. Cognitive Science, 2014
Fall Retreat – 10/3/2015
You know that feeling when you don’t really know anyone, but it’s welcome week so you attend random events like “Boba Night for Sixth College or “BONDfire at La Jolla Shores.” It’s that feeling of being social and spontaneous that students get at the beginning of the year before realizing that the next few weeks of the quarter are going to be insanely busy. Now for the sake of this post, I could lie and say that it was this feeling that got me to come out to Fall Retreat as a freshman. But since I’ll be seeing most of you at Mass this Sunday, I think it would be best to tell you all the truth. When I first attended Fall Retreat, I was leading it. I was too scared to go on the day retreat as a first year. Or a second year. Though I had this immense excitement and longing to try something new, I decided not to attend because I was too scared of meeting new people and I was dubious that I would benefit from attending such an event. And so after three years, I finally decided to attend Fall Retreat (and only because Fr. JP told me that I had to lead it). I had no idea what to expect and if anyone would even attend. But despite my doubts, I was determined to make it a good event because I had spent weeks convincing people that they would have a “fun and wonderful time.” Fall Retreat is Newman Center’s all-day retreat geared towards incoming students, especially first year and transfer students. Therefore, a majority of the retreat is dedicated to getting students acclimated to the UCSD campus. Each section of the retreat is held in an iconic or important part of campus, which ultimately gives new students a tour of UCSD. All of the topics address faith within the context of academics, whether it be the hardships of maintaining one’s faith in a university or how faith can help students find purpose and support throughout their academic career. I don’t know about you, but this is something I still struggle with to this day. And so Newman encourages all students to attend the retreat because these are all themes we deal with on a daily basis. So if you’re wondering, “Should I attend Fall Retreat?”, the answer is easy. If you like eating free food, making good conversation, receiving helpful information, renewing your faith, making new friends, and re-energizing yourself for the new year, then the answer is “Yes! This sounds like the bee’s knees! Where do I sign up?” With a little courage and some helpful advice from this blog post, I’m sure you’ll make the wise decision. Don’t be like me during my first year. Take a chance! Be adventurous! Attend Fall Retreat!