Liesl Dittrich

Liesl Dittrich.jpg

Portland State University, Modesto Junior College, California State University Stanislaus

Gregori Class of 2014

Social Sciences

Weighted GPA at Gregori: Above 4.0

SAT Composite Score (2400 Scale): 1750

ACT Composite Score: 27

Extracurriculars at Gregori: Peer Tutor

When choosing between colleges, how did you decide amongst the colleges that you were accepted into?

When I was applying for college as a first time freshman I decided during the beginning of my senior year of high school that I wanted to move to a city that I had never been to before. I decided to take a road trip to Portland, Oregon during the fall of 2013. I fell in love with its clean urban environment in downtown Portland. I applied to the state university and one private school there. It was more economical for me to attend Portland State and I preferred its location right in the center of downtown Portland. When deciding to transfer out of PSU, I wanted to move back to California to save money. I finished up my general education at MJC and then I transferred to Stan State so that I could live at home while finishing my degree.

What would you personally say are your school's strengths?

For Portland State University, its location in the center of Portland allows for the school to bridge relevant academic and career opportunities between the school and the city. Modesto Junior College was an affordable option while I finished up my general education. I qualified for a BOG fee waiver which waived my tuition for the year. Stanislaus State's smaller school population (roughly 10,000) compared to PSU at over 35,000 students has allowed for me to create stronger networking connections. However, networking at any campus big or small takes effort and consistent communication.

How accessible are administrators, registrars, professors, teaching assistants, etc.?

All three colleges provided ample access to professors and administrators.

What are the classes like? Are they more lecture-based or discussion-based? Do you often partake in group projects?

With all of the colleges I attended, the larger the class the more lecture-based they became. However, I had small discussion-based classes (as few as 10 students) at both Portland State and Stan State. Group projects seemed to have been more common in my smaller classes.

What is one thing that you wished you knew before you started at your university?

As any student would, I wish I had a more clear idea of what I wanted to study and what career I wanted to eventually pursue. Like many of you will find, this takes lots of time and exploration in and out of the classroom.

What types of clubs are offered on campus? Are you involved in any?

At PSU, I took an art-themed writing class. During this time and after the class ended, I volunteered one evening per week at the Portland Art Museum. Here, I learned so much about art history as the museum showcases art from around the world. I also learned how museums provide public education that is accessible and affordable to the people of Portland.

Are you able to talk to your professors on a one-on-one basis? Are office hours available to help you with questions with course-work?

This was possible at all colleges I attended.

If you are far away from home, do you ever feel homesick? How do you balance relationships with family and friends from home?

When first moving to Portland, I felt homesick for roughly three weeks. After that Portland became my home. I managed to fly back to California during the holidays. I also stayed in touch with my family over the phone.