My Dating Life in College

To make it simple, my dating life is non-existent. Actually, all of my dates are due dates. Or study dates. Haha, I know I am so “punny.” But let’s just be honest, let’s just be real. My Master’s Program wouldn’t be too much to handle if I wasn’t working to pay for my college tuition. In fact, the program is pretty easy for me. I am not sure if this is because I am academically gifted (I’m really not that smart – you should see my undergrad GPA) or if it is because the program itself is just easy. But I loved wearing my diamond ring that I sold because it reminded me to stay focused and it kept guys away from having a chance to get at and distract me. (WHAT GUYS! HAHA!)


I started wearing my grandmother’s emerald ring, which is very beautiful, but it is too valuable for me to wear to school in case I lose it. I would rather lose a diamond that I paid for then my grandmother’s ring because it holds sentimental value. I only wear that ring for really special occasions. Plus, it doesn’t really look like an engagement ring. Like I said yesterday, wanting another diamond ring makes me just want to study harder and work sooner so that I can afford to buy another one as soon as I am done with school! Speaking of which, I should go study now! Happy Friday, everyone!

Post-Experience Selling Diamond for College Tuition

diamond ring 3As you may already know from my previous post (read more here:, I sold my diamond (pictured above) to pay for my college tuition. Ever since I stopped wearing my ring, this scenario keeps happening to me: Within the first ten minutes that I meet a guy, he will mention his girlfriend arbitrarily. But I question if it is because he can’t stop thinking about her, OR if it is because he thinks I’m hitting on him! I think my extroverted and bubbly personality keeps getting misinterpreted! Oh and just to clarify, they’re flattering themselves – I wasn’t even looking! I’m way happier single anyways! I change the #foreveralone hashtag/meme to #happilyalone or #happyalone.

I really miss my diamond ring to be honest and I am taking this as a sign that I need a new one as soon as possible. I know I could buy a super cheap gumball machine ring. But after this experience of wearing a real diamond that looks like an engagement ring and then selling it, I don’t see the point of buying a cheap fake $20 ring that turns my finger green. I want all of my jewelry to have value just in case of future situations when I am in a pinch for quick money, like to pay for college tuition or books. I can’t wait to graduate and land that full-time salaried job so that I can find a bigger better diamond ring!


This semester for my Master of Science in Education Program, I need to do two practicums.

  1. According to Oxford dictionaries, practicum is defined as “a practical section of a course of study.”
  2. Merriam-Webster’s definition is “a course of study designed especially for the preparation of teachers and clinicians that involves actually working in the area of study and using the knowledge and skills of previously studied theory.”
  3. Wikipedia, I think said it best as: “a graduate level course, often in a specialized field of study, that is designed to give students supervised practical application of a previously or concurrently studied theory. Practicums (student teaching) are common for education and social work majors.”

My first practicum involves one-on-one sessions with little Elly. Elly just started kindergarten and I will be assessing her literacy skills. For our first session, we went to Disneyland to get to know each other in order for her to be comfortable around me. We had so much fun riding the Monorail, meeting Tinkerbell, spinning around on the King Arthur Carrousel, getting dizzy on Mad Tea Party, and screaming on Matterhorn Bobsleds, as you can see here:

In what other Master’s Program do I get to go to Disneyland for school?! Haha, I had a great time and I am so excited to work with her!

Studying at Starbucks

20150916_172703Yesterday, I blogged about the Asian bakery/café that provided one of the most productive study sessions I have ever had. But I also mentioned that my intention was to go to Starbucks. I love studying at Starbucks, and I actually spent a ton of time at the Starbucks that was on my undergrad campus. This is actually the reason why I have a Starbucks gold card (I will write a post about it sometime in the near future!). Starbucks is a great place to get serious work done but it isn’t as strict or quiet as a library. It is a fun place to people watch that almost always has interesting students. I have definitely heard some colorful conversations about boys, hook-ups, professors, etc. while I was studying at Starbucks.

The smell of coffee is invigorating and you are welcome to indulge. My favorite at Starbucks is their hot chocolate and the pastries. If you don’t feel like studying, what I like to do is grab a friend and invite them to Starbucks to watch Netflix or movies on your laptop by using the free wifi. Some people might give you dirty looks because you might be laughing too loud or they might want to study, but hey! You paid to be there and don’t let them taking their life too seriously get in the way of you and you friend(s) having fun! Again, Starbucks is NOT a library! Happy studying!

Studying at a Bakery/Café

I know it is only the fourth week of school but I am already overwhelmed and exhausted. The more I tried to push myself to do homework, the more I ended up wasting time, making up excuses like cleaning or taking a break because my eyes were hurting from staring at my laptop for too long. I just had to get out of my room and my house because I was getting distracted by Youtube and Facebook. So, I made the wise decision to go out to a nearby Starbucks.

To my surprise, when I got there, the Starbucks had closed down! I didn’t want to turn around and just go back home since I already wasted the gas driving out there. Instead, I discovered a little Asian bakery right across the street. I thought, why not? They probably don’t have wifi so I will literally just have to read my textbooks with no distractions (my phone was already dying at this point).

It turned out to be one of the most productive study sessions I have had in a really long time! I ended up getting so much done. I was so refreshed and proud of myself! I came home and was exhausted and went straight to bed after using all of that brain power. Sometimes, you just need to get a new scenery to get re-energized. Refuel before your next big project or assignment! Look for new places to give yourself a break, and get a delicious treat to reward yourself for all of your hard work!


What is Leadership in College?

Step 1: Look like a Leader
Step 1: Look like a Leader

Leadership is more than just dressing well in collar shirts and suits, looking good, and putting on makeup. I have been very lucky to experience leadership in many ways inside and outside of school. In college, I earned both the National and Chapter Excellence in Leadership Awards from the National Society of Leadership and Success (Sigma Alpha Pi) by completing workshops, attending socials, raising money at fundraisers, and volunteering at community service events.

I was also a member of my university’s Circle K International, a leadership-based community service club. One of my favorite places to volunteer with Circle K was for a local dog shelter. In high school, I was an active member of Key Club and American Red Cross and volunteered almost 400 hours of community service.

Over the course of my two years at my university, I trained with professionals on conflict resolution/mediation, pursuing research, finding strength competencies, diversity, and public speaking in order to receive the Passport to Leadership Certificate. This certificate helped me become a Community Programmer, where I supported the Freshmen Initiatives in University Housing and created a home away from home for first-year students.

Leadership, to me, is more than just leading others, managing projects, delegating tasks, and having a title. To me, it is about being a role model and supporting the team and the people around you. It is a learning, growing experience and a lifetime journey. I would not be where I am now without these leadership experiences, and I encourage you all to go out and find your own ways to get that experience in college while you can. I will be sure to continue writing more college and leadership posts too!

How Scholarships Fund My College Education

I have been fiercely independent since I started working at the age of 16. One of my greatest accomplishments was working four jobs to support myself through my undergraduate studies. I could not afford to go to college, but thanks to financial aid, Cal/Pell grants, and ten merit/need-based scholarships, I was able to earn a Bachelor’s and three Associate’s Degrees.


Today was the due date of my school department’s bookstore scholarship application and I turned it in just in time! Scholarships are very important to me. In fact, I am beyond grateful to have received this same scholarship during my first semester in this program. It gave me the stability to start off on the right foot. By competing in a scholarship pageant, I received three scholarships for Miss Congeniality, Facebook Fan Favorite, and the participant scholarship. Recently, I was selected to receive the Associated Students, Inc. (ASI) Graduate Student Scholarship for my achievements, accomplishments, and contributions to my campus and community. I attest my 3.78 GPA to these scholarships for allowing me to focus on my studies and take time off from work. I really hope I am awarded this scholarship again as I begin my second year of this program, to maintain my high grades and temporary financially stability.

I am a role model to all low socio-economic students, and proof that hard work is always rewarded. Continue to study hard and go after those scholarships, like me! Good luck! :)

When I grow up, I want to be…

Future writer and future teacher
Future writer and future teacher

I aspire to become a reading professor at a community college, which is why I am pursuing my Masters of Science in Education with an Emphasis in Reading right now from Cal State Fullerton. My life goal is to write and publish novels, and I also genuinely enjoy writing blogs. My dream jobs are being a writer for ThoughtCatalog and a Disney College Program Instructor at Disneyland. This semester, I plan to research adult literacy and motivation, what kind of books best engage community college students, and what type of written materials are needed most at their level. I plan to use my research to promote lifelong learning and curiosity through literacy. Coupled with my passion in foreign languages (Korean is my native language, I studied Spanish formally in school for almost 12 years, and I am trying to learn Japanese), I hope to break language barriers in order to fully comprehend global citizenship and socio-cultural factors that affect learning to become a truly diverse educator and writer. My desire to make a lasting positive impact will drive my efforts to reach students from all backgrounds in my classroom, and around the world through my personal stories in my books and blogs.

Sold My Diamond for College Tuition

diamond ring

Today, I went to a local jeweler to sell my diamond ring. It was a small 0.22 carat diamond mounted onto a 14K white gold ring, which now in hindsight, I think the gold is what made it valuable. Now, you ask, why would I part with my one and only piece of valuable jewelry? Because realistically, I don’t have the money to pay for my tuition. Graduate school is expensive, and I promised myself that I would not take out a student loan when I originally decided to go to grad school. I work hard for my education and I am willing to make sacrifices because I genuinely value knowledge and I am confident in the opportunities this degree will open up for me. I also want to prove to myself and everyone else that it is possible to work through school and pay straight out of pocket without getting yourself into student debt.

Even though a tiny little piece of me was sad to see my diamond ring go, I got a nice check that will pay off a portion of my college fees. It was also really motivating to see all of the glittering precious stones dazzling in the fancy store while I was there. I know that after I have a nice salary that my Master’s Degree will get me, I can get an even bigger, better, and prettier diamond one day! Looks like I will be able to afford being in school for another semester! :)

Post 3-Day Weekend Accident

Welcome back to school! I actually way overslept this morning and I’m not entirely sure why. I didn’t have the greatest start today but I tried to make use of the time I did have instead of letting it get me down! I’m sure many of you had a hard time getting up this morning too, but I doubt few of you can outdo mine. This is how I started my day:

bumper 2bumper 1

Accidents happen. This was my first accident and also my first car. It is good to learn these lessons now on a less expensive car than later on a nice fancy (most likely foreign) one. Now, I will drive even more extra carefully and I know I won’t make the same driving mistake again. I was actually okay but my mom flipped out like no one’s business. My car and my engine are fine, which is all I care about. I don’t care what my car looks like as long as it runs fine and gets me from point A to point B. Plus, it doesn’t look that bad. I’m really not worried. This is exactly what emergency funds are for! It feels so good to be prepared for this kind of stuff. Look at me “adulting!” :)

My friend was incredibly nice enough to explain to me what happens when you are in an accident. You need to fill out a police report and contact your insurance. It is always good to know your deductible – sometimes $500 or $1,000. This is what you have to pay for the damages and additionally, your insurance will most likely raise your monthly payments. If you can find a good mechanic or a trust-worthy body shop that can just help you out for less money than what your dealership will probably charge you, it may be better than involving your insurance. Or if you are a cheap college student like me, you don’t have to do anything since my accident didn’t injure myself or anyone else, and no other cars were involved. It was literally just my bumper so I was very lucky. Please drive safe everyone, especially around your college campus!