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Abby Grills

More by Abby Grills

Alyosha Sinkevich '15



Hometown:  Walnut Creek, CA

School Year:  Junior

Major:  Civil Engineering

Residence Hall/Living:  Lafayette Apartments

Interests:  Bee Keeping, Guitar, participating in my Russian culture, exercising


SCU Life

What activities or clubs are you in?  American Society of Civil Engineers, Association of General Contractors

What is your favorite place on campus?  The wisteria arbor in the Mission Gardens. It’s 400 years old!

Favorite professor? Professor Singh

What’s one thing you want to do before you graduate? Start a Santa Clara tradition

What advice do you have for freshmen?  Never underestimate yourself


Fun Facts

What is the one place you want to visit?  Argentina

What would you say your spirit animal is?  Dolphin

Favorite movie? Snatch

Dream Job?  Bridge Engineer

What is your most embarrassing SCU moment?  Failing at starting a chant at a soccer game

Celebrity Crush:  Penelope Cruz

Pet Peeves:  People chewing with their mouth open


Love Life

Relationship status:  Single

Ideal first date: A nice, cultural dinner out and salsa dancing

Deal Breakers:  If she’s into my twin brother

First thing you notice in a girl:  Eye color


My Top 9 Culture Shocks Studying Abroad in Spain


1.  So much PDA. Spanish culture places a higher significance on visiting the home of a boyfriend or girlfriend. Because most people live with their parents through college and frequently even after, it is not as easy as it is in the US to spend time with a boyfriend or girlfriend at your apartment. This results in couples making out in public. Everywhere. This includes the metro, the streets, restaurants, and most commonly, in parks. At night especially, couples can be seen lying in the grass doing anything from cuddling to having sex.

2.  People stay out until 8 am. Going out in Madrid means not only committing your night, but also your entire next day. It is typical to meet up with friends and start drinking around 11 pm, maybe go to a cheap bar, and head to the discos around 2 am. Everyone stays at the disco until around 6 when the metro starts running again. Many churro restaurants are open all night on weekends so party-goers can grab breakfast on their way home.

3.  No tipping and no additional tax. This is nice because when you are dining out or buying something at a store, what you see is exactly what you will pay. However, not tipping has a definite downside, as service is clearly more lax as a result. No incentive to go all out for the customer results in much less attentive servers.

Morris Kim '15: OFF Campus Cutie


The Basics

Name:  Morris Kim

Hometown: Portland, Oregon

School Year:  Junior

Major:  Anthropology

Describe yourself in 3 words: genuine, confident, adventurous.

Zodiac Sign:  Virgo


SCU Life

What activities or clubs are you in?  Community facilitator, tutor at the Drahmann center

What is your favorite place on campus? Meditation room, highly underrated.

Favorite subject or class?  Health, disease, and culture: Anth 134

What is your most embarrassing SCU moment? Freshman year, I was at the gym on the bench press trying to be the cool kid who doesn’t use weight clips. So when the bar started tilting to one side, the weights slid out one after another and made a huge racket, successfully getting everyone’s undivided attention. I felt like such a pencilneck. Lesson of the story: use weight clips.

What’s one thing you want to do before you graduate? Do something nice for Cecelia who, without fail, brightens up my day with just one visit to the Cellar.

Favorite food in Benson:  Hands down, chicken parm.


Abroad Life

Where are you studying abroad? Oxford, United Kingdom

How long are you studying abroad for? One whole year!

What program are you in? Not really sure if it actually has a name… That’s how underground it is. Something like “Honors program Oxford scholarship” I think.

Who do you want to win the Super Bowl?


How angry are you about the Dalai Lama ticket giveaway?


Everything I Wish I Knew as a Freshman



Starting your freshman year can be a bit overwhelming, especially when you don't know what to expect. While it can be a little intimidating entering a new environment, your freshman year should be something to get excited about. We've compiled a list of things to help you start your year the right way:

1. No one calls the dorms by their RLC names. Orientation facilitates RLC pride, which is great, but a lot of freshmen come onto campus in the fall clueless as to what the dorms are actually called. Nothing screams freshman like telling someone at a welcome weekend party that you live in Communitas.

2. Don’t wear your lanyard around your neck. It’s convenient. Trust me, I know. But bending over to unlock your door with your lanyard still hanging from your neck is a habit worth breaking early.

3. No need to brag about your high school. Everyone comes into college thinking they went to the greatest high school ever. Even if you did, there is no need to talk about it constantly, although a little is permissible. High school life and stories are part of natural conversation and getting to know your classmates considering that’s where you spent the last 4 years of your life. Just don’t let your stories turn into boasting.

4. No need to brag about your home state. Same story.

5. Enjoy Welcome Week to the fullest. There is absolutely nothing like Welcome Week of freshman year. Everyone is on the same boat, and everyone wants to make friends. People are at their friendliest and most open. Get everyone’s names and numbers and don’t be shy.

6. Don’t be THAT girl at the party. This one speaks for itself. Know your limits.

Ryan Gosling vs. Puppies



Ryan Gosling is debatably the biggest heartthrob of our generation. This Canadian actor is undeniably gorgeous and no girl can resist his portrayal of hopeless romantic, Noah, in The Notebook.

Gosling first made it to blog fame via Tumblr, F*** Yeah! Ryan Gosling, run by Douglas Reinhardt. This blog features photos of Gosling accompanied by captions beginning with the phrase “Hey girl.”

Just when we thought that it couldn’t get better than that, a new kind of Gosling Tumblr surfaced – and this one may just be better than the last. One genius blogger decided to put photos of Ryan Gosling and adorable puppies side by side and pose the question, "Is Ryan Gosling Cuter Than A Puppy?"

The question remains unanswered.

In the meantime, we’ve compiled some of our favorites here:


Mission City Creamery: Chris Leahy



Mission City Creamery encompasses the feel of an old fashion ice cream shop. The photo lined wall, window seating, and bar by the counter give the place an old timey feel that makes you feel at home. When a customer comes through the door, Chris Leahy is there to greet them from behind the counter with a big, friendly grin.


Chris is a general contractor, originally from Cape Cod, whose passion for ice cream led him to create Santa Clara’s newest ice cream shop. After recently turning fifty, Chris found that he had lost his passion for building and needed to do something different. Twenty years of experience making ice cream and his friendship with Kelly, the owner of Blondie’s, led Chris to take over the location when Kelly got engaged and decided to leave the business.

Like Blondie’s, Mission City Creamery sells both ice cream and frozen yogurt, but Mission City has one large factor setting it aside from the rest: Chris makes all of the ice cream himself in-house. A high school friend introduced Chris to ice cream making in 1990 using a basic Rival ice cream machine. His wife bought him a matching machine shortly thereafter and it developed into a hobby. Chris and his wife began hosting ice cream socials from their home 16 years ago and the events increased in popularity as time went on. Chris explains, “This last summer we had about 200-220 people show up at my house for an ice cream social.”


26 Acts of Kindness: Remembering the Victims of Newtown



In the wake of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday, people have been searching for a way to give back and honor the victims of the shooting. On Friday morning a gunman entered the elementary school by force and killed 26 innocent people: 20 children and 6 adults. Without the bravery of teachers at the school, many more children could have been killed. The gunman later killed himself as police closed in.

President Obama spoke on the events the evening of the shooting with tears in his eyes stating, “In the hard days to come, that community needs us to be at our best as Americans, and I will do everything in my power as president to help, because while nothing can fill the space of a lost child or loved one, all of us can extend a hand to those in need, to remind them that we are there for them, that we are praying for them, that the love they felt for those they lost endures not just in their memories, but also in ours.”

NBC’s Ann Curry started a movement with a tweet challenging people to commit 20 random acts of kindness, one for each child killed in Newtown, CT.  Curry’s tweet read, “Imagine if all of us committed to 20 mitvahs/acts of kindness to honor each child lost in Newtown. I'm in. If you are RT ‪#20Acts.”

The challenge was so well received that people accepting the challenge increased the number of acts to 26 in order to represent the adult victims as well. The reaction has been enormous as thousands of people have been going out and doing random acts of kindness in their area. Some participants have also left notes explaining the movement and asking the recipients to join in and perform acts of kindness as well.

Fashion Blogger: Samir Khanna



You may have seen Samir Khanna around campus snapping photos on his Canon.   This sophomore from Palm Springs, California, has taken the style of SCU students and shared it with the digital world.  Samir started a fashion blog specific to the SCU campus, as well as had his photos chosen to be displayed on other sites.

Samir describes his personal style as “prep through and through.”  His style is preppy with his own personal twists.  He loves the style at Santa Clara, especially the “preppiness,” and how girls aren’t afraid to wear cute and fun dresses.  Samir is inspired by Bill Cunningham, a fashion photographer, and Scott Schuman, otherwise known as The Sartorialist.  As Samir says, The Sartorialist “took what Bill Cunningham was already doing, and put it online.”

Samir has further elaborated on Scott Schuman’s work with his fashion blog SCU Sartorial.  SCU Sartorial features men and women around campus whose style stands out.  Samir will shoot people around campus, whether he knows them or not, in order to capture their unique style and look.  He explains, “There are individuals who will go out and do something different and I wanted to showcase those individuals.”

Samir’s shots encompass both individuals’ personalities and our beautiful campus.  His favorite place to shoot is the St. Ignatius Lawn behind Kenna, but he has been switching over to the Benson Fountain to get a little more variety.