Student Spotlight: My GCU Experience

Thunder in the student section at a basketball game By Judah Esparza Posted on February 13, 2017  in  [ GCU Experience ]

Choosing which college you are going to go to is a very important decision that many teenagers have to make. When I was accepted into Grand Canyon University, I was still unsure of where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do with my education. I wanted to go to a college where I knew I could have fun while getting a good education, as well as being within my budget to avoid graduating in massive amounts of debt. The more I learned about the GCU experience, the faster I realized that it fit most, if not all, of my criteria. I continued looking into the university, and as I did, the higher it climbed on my list of the colleges I was seriously considering.

One day, I was talking to someone who I knew from high school that had gone to GCU. While he was telling me his experiences on campus, I realized that this was the school for me. So I contacted my admissions counselor and told him that I wanted to go through with my acceptance, despite the fact that I had never visited the campus or city in person. The moment I drove up to campus for my Welcome Week move-in, I knew I had made the right decision.

First Impressions

When I drove up to the campus for Welcome Week, I was shocked at the atmosphere surrounding GCU so early in the morning. There were people cheering and waving, and the moment my car parked, I was immediately swarmed by volunteers ready to take my luggage and belongings up to my dorm room. Their enthusiasm was mind-blowing – I had never seen anything like it. Volunteers led me to the check-in desk to meet my RA’s and receive my room key and then led me into my room. It was at this moment I realized that everything I had heard about the atmosphere and community at GCU was true.

I was fortunate enough to room with people I knew from high school, and as we were all moving in, I could tell we all had the same feeling of giddiness and excitement for this new chapter in our lives. My first look at GCU is a memory that I will always remember with fondness.

The College Experience

Living in a dorm on a college campus is a period of your life you will never forget. Many people come into college not knowing what to bring to their dorm room or how to meet new people. This is not a problem at GCU, because the first week is Welcome Week, with many events that are crafted to help new and returning students mingle with other students. Some of these events include Canyon Cool Down, a giant pool party with snacks and a DJ, and Lope-A-Palooza, a hype-fest for the upcoming athletics seasons and different events throughout the year. In those first couple of days, I met a ton of people, most of whom I still talk with to this day!

As I adjusted to living away from home, I also began my higher education. The professors I have had at GCU have been very helpful. The small class sizes create a more intimate setting, which allows professors to interact with students directly. Professors also offer office hours for students, which I found as a great resource for my education. The professors and faculty truly want you to succeed and give your education a higher priority than any other college I have visited. The community and resources that exists within the Colangelo College of Business are a huge blessing as well and have truly helped me in my studies!

Life on Campus and Now

The more I explored GCU, the more I discovered new things to do on campus. GCU advertises all throughout campus the different ways to get involved. I had no idea some of these activities even existed, such as Thunderground, the bowling alley and hangout spot on campus. There are also clubs and intramural sports to join to keep me busy. A few friends and I started exploring different parts of the state and eventually learned of the Outdoor Rec Club, which is a club on campus that goes hiking on adventures, such as whitewater rafting and slacklining! GCU also offers some of the best on-campus dining options I have ever seen, with restaurants such as Chick-Fil-A, Panda Express and the Habit that also include plenty of seating, whether it be indoors or outdoors.

Through the education I am receiving at GCU and the experiences I am having with all the people I have met, I feel more confident to get out in the world and continue with my life! Being at GCU has truly shown me my purpose and is guiding me to success in the world. Overall, choosing GCU as the college I would attend has been a decision that I am glad I made!

Grand Canyon University is committed to your success and helping you find your purpose. To learn more about the campus at GCU, visit our website or contact us using the green Request More Information button at the top of the page.

Judah Esparaza

Judah Esparza

Judah Esparza is a senior at Grand Canyon University. He was born and raised in LA County and moved to Phoenix for college. He currently studies in the Colangelo College of Business and aspires to one day own his own successful company.
Learn more about Judah Esparza

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