Category Archives: Activities

How I Turned My College Town into My College Home

Hello Chico State! My name is Shyna Deepak, and I am the new social media intern for the Department of Public Affairs and Publications. I am about to enter my senior year, working on my BFA in Electronic Arts with a minor in communication design. After spending three years in Chico, I feel comfortable enough so say I have experienced a great deal here—the good and the bad.

“Holi: Festival of Colors”

As we all are aware, Chico State has a mixed reputation. Every visit to my hometown in the Bay Area, I run into someone who asks me what I do. I tell them I am a student at Chico State, and in response, I almost always get a wink as they say something along the lines of “majoring in partying, huh?” You would think it would be people my age range making this comments, but in fact I mostly hear it from adults in my parents’ social circle. It’s pretty embarrassing, and I always try to come up with a clever response.

However, when I am in Chico, I try my best to help this “party school” reputation disappear. I want to be able to explain to people that there is so much more to Chico than the nightlife. Within this small college town, I have learned about the existence of so many different types of communities. Chico State offers so much more than an education—it offers a home. A home is a place that should be respected. Who enjoys people running through their house and making a mess? Definitely not me!

  Don’t get me wrong. I would be lying if I said that I haven’t had any youthful indiscretions. But I have learned from my mistakes and choose not to live an unhealthy lifestyle.

“Bingo’s a Drag” at the UHUB

Since I have ventured away from this scene, I have learned more about what opportunities present themselves here in the town of Chico. We have an amazing park that includes outdoor planetarium, not to mention the abundance of quirky stores, 24-hour donuts and diners, and the most delicious independent restaurants. Chico has a small-town charm that I’ve grown to love and cherish.

What is there to do here? Well, last weekend my friend and I biked to T-Bar  through Bidwell Park, and made it in time for their happy hour. I got pomegranate lemonade and a chicken wrap—yum! During midterms, I went to the WREC and saw people studying with their flashcards in the hot tub. They were able to study and de-stress at the same time! On occasion, I will invite a friend over to watch cheesy horror movies and eat pita chips with hummus. If I’m alone, I’ll just watch 30 Rock on Netflix or brainstorm ideas for DIY projects (via Pinterest).

CE 3
Participating in the Vagina Monologues

When it comes to your Thursday, Friday, or Saturday nights, I’ve found there are plenty of things to do- you just need to figure out what makes your Chico Experience yours. 


We all know selecting a college is a tough choice. Here at Chico State, we want new students to be sure. That is why we offer an open house and day of activities that will help prospective students decide if Chico is the place for them.

In anticipation of this year’s Choose Chico! event (April 6, 2013), we asked our current students and alumni on Twitter to share why they chose Chico State. The response was overwhelming; Chico is a special place.

Many based their decision on our program offerings:

Several students/alumni mentioned our small class sizes:

Some even chose Chico because of a personal connection:

And, of course, almost everyone mentioned the overall atmosphere of Chico including downtown, Bidwell Park, friendly folks, and our beautiful campus:

Have another reason to share? Leave a comment and tell us why you choose Chico.

Admitted students, visit us this Saturday, April 6 for Choose Chico!:

Follow us on Twitter @ChicoState.

Facebook Cover Photo Challenge!

We want to put your photo here!
We want to put your photo here!

Help us choose CSU, Chico’s Facebook cover photo! Share your photos, and then help select from our favorites to be the next California State University, Chico Facebook page cover photo.

Photos should show off the best of Chico State and the Chico experience. Take photos of our beautiful campus in all its spring glory or your student club hard at work—or make a creative collage of campus scenes. All photos should represent your own work, be in good taste, and comply with the Chico State Social Media Comment Policy.

Photos need to be large enough to work for a Facebook cover photo (851p x 315p, file sizes of 1 to 2MB work well). Most current smartphone camera photos are OK. (Sorry, Instagramers—most Instagram images won’t have high enough resolution when cropped and enlarged to Facebook cover size.)

You may submit up to three photos.

How to Enter:
Share your photo(s) with us in one of three easy ways!

  1. Post it to our Facebook Timeline. Put “cover challenge” or “photo challenge” in the comment
  2. Tweet it to us by tagging @ChicoState and including #coverchallenge or #photochallenge.
  3. Email your photo as an attachment to PAintern1[at] Include “cover challenge” or “photo challenge” in the subject line.

Selection Process:
Share your photos with us by Monday, April 15, 2013, at 5 p.m. The Chico State social media team will select up to 10 photos to be featured in a photo album posted on our page Wednesday, April 17. The photographers’ names will accompany the photos, so feel free to brag to your friends if you’re featured. The photo within the album with the most “likes” by Wednesday, April 24, at 5 p.m. will become the next CSU, Chico Facebook cover photo!

Note: This challenge is in no way sponsored, endorsed, or administered by, or associated with Facebook Inc. Any and all information provided with your submission is to California State University, Chico and not to Facebook.

Planning Events and Honoring Heroes

Alison HealeyBy Alison Healey, senior
Business- Marketing, and Recreation Management Major

“Recreation… So you’re majoring in playing?”

This is what statement I hear from many people when I tell them I am majoring in recreation. Most people don’t realize the recreation major encompasses many fields, including event planning, parks management, hospitality, and tourism.

veterans logo

Through my Recreation 474 class, Association Operations and Events, I was able to plan an event from start to finish. Throughout the semester my classmates and I helped plan Honoring Our Veterans event, campus event held on November 10, 2012.I am focusing on the event planning side of recreation and have become more passionate about it as I take higher level classes. This is because these courses actually let you get hands-on experience within your field of choice.

This was an event in honor of all veterans, but it focused specifically those that were associated with Chico State or the Chico Community. Chico State has been recognized as a veteran-friendly school by a number of publications, and this year the university wanted to take it a step further by hosting a special day for veterans. This is where my class came in.

displays at the veterans eventMy class was “hired” by Chico State to put on the Chico State Honoring Our Veterans event. We were given a budget and a venue that we had to work with. Besides those two points we were on our own.

Throughout the semester, we had to come up with the marketing plan, the menu, the entertainment, the decorations, and the program. I knew event planning was very detail oriented, but I never fully comprehended it until I was in this class. Details such as picking colors for the decorations that wouldn’t offend the veterans and following military protocol were not things we considered in our initial planning.

veterans in attendanceAlthough this was not my first time planning an event, it was beneficial to have my instructor, Polly Crabtree, mentor me through the process. She made us think about what many would consider the basics in event planning in a new way.

For example, inviting the guests seemed like it would be one of the easiest parts of the event. But, we were wrong. Because of the wide age range of our guests,  simple e-mail to everyone would most likely not reach the older population, but a letter in the mail might not reach the younger population. Professor Crabtree guided us through figuring out how to reach our target audience in multiple ways in order to reach everyone.

veteran flags
Student event planners from the Recreation 474 class at the Chico State Honoring Our Veterans event on November 10, 2012.

In the end, the Chico State Honoring Our Veterans event was a hit among the veterans and community members. As people left the event, I was thanked numerous times for my efforts. At times this class was challenging, but it was all worth it once I saw how happy and honored all the veterans looked after our event.

The Orion’s Going #DigitalFirst

Ben Mullin - Journalism and English Literature major, and Managing Editor, The OrionBy Ben Mullin, Journalism and English Literature major
Managing Editor, The Orion

When The Orion news team convened for the first meeting of the semester, I told them all to take a deep breath and close their eyes.

Some raised their eyebrows. Some cracked hesitant smiles. But they humored me while I began my speech:

“I want you to imagine you’re all big shot reporters for the New York Times,” I said, eliciting genuine smiles from the group. “Suddenly, you get the call: the Empire State Building is on fire. You rush over to the scene and talk to the police, who tell you the building could collapse at any minute.”

I paused for dramatic effect. It’s possible one of them yawned.

screen cap of daily newscast
Daily Newscasts posted to YouTube now fill the gap between print issues.

“Suddenly, you’re confronted by a mother who’s out of her mind with worry because her baby’s stuck on one of the floors. When she asks you about the situation, what do you do? Tell her everything you know right away, or ask her to wait until tomorrow morning for the print edition?”

It may sound like a no-brainer, but there are still a few news organizations who operate using the latter method: they report the news all day and put their stories into the next day’s newspaper, just in time for it to be outdated and irrelevant.

Up until about last year, The Orion, Chico State’s student-run newspaper did just that, even though we’ve had a website since the late ’90s. A few stories inevitably found their way online between weekly editions, but the majority was posted Tuesday night, right before our print edition came out on Wednesday.

orion twitter feed
@TheOrion_News Twitter account posts stories as they break throughout the week.

This semester was different. The majority of news writers made Twitter accounts for The Orion and posted brief bulletins whenever they noticed something interesting or newsworthy happening on campus. When we were notified that Cal Poly San Luis Obispo student Brett Olson went missing during the annual Labor Day float, we posted it to Twitter immediately. When we heard that Governor Brown was visiting campus to promote Proposition 30, it was online within the hour. And when Chico State president Paul Zingg suspended the Greek system, we had a videographer, a reporter, and two photographers on the scene, with coverage to match.

On Halloween weekend, reporters and photographers stayed out until 2 a.m. capturing images and stories for publication the next day. I would routinely get called at O’Dark Thirty from staff writer Pedro Quintana, who slept during the day so he could listen to the police scanner at night.

The Orion isn’t the first collegiate newspaper to attempt to bolster its online presence through Facebook, Twitter, and a neverending stream of online stories. In many ways, we’re behind the times. But this year, the Associated Collegiate Press acknowledged our efforts by naming The Orion as a finalist for an online Pacemaker award, widely regarded as the Pulitzer Prize of digital college journalism.

orion app screen cap
Screen shot of The Orion app, now available for Apple and Android devices.

When the awards were announced last semester, The Orion wasn’t among the winners. But most of the editors saw our failure to clinch the award as inspiration to try again next semester, with a focus on delivering news to Chico State’s students in real time, with text, photos, and video. We’re also launching an app which students can use to get their Chico State news from their smartphones.

Chico State, welcome to the future of journalism. We’ll see you all on the other side.


Visit The Orion online at,, or

Winter Break Plans? Zzzz…

  1. In the midst of fall final exams last month, we asked our Facebook and Twitter community what they were looking forward to the most during winter break. Aside from graduation and travel, it seems like most Wildcats are hoping to catch up on their sleep!

    Check out the responses below:
  2. Suzi Bailey
    Relaxing, spending time with family and friends, and cleaning my apartment
  3. Greg Bloom
    the arrival of the next solar maximum, an interaction between Earth and the black hole at the center of the galaxy, or Earth’s collision with a planet called “Nibiru”.
  4. gregoriardz
    @chicostate gonna be glad to get outta the #crazystorms we’ve been having lately! I’ll be back for #Januaryintercession though! #2weekbreak
  5. Well, we hope you are all resting up and enjoying your time off.  Tell us how you’re spending your break in the comments section below! See you back in classes January 28!
    Want to stay in the loop with campus news and events?
    Follow @ChicoState on Twitter.

Fall Photo Challenge

Fall is the time of year Chico, the city of trees, comes to life. Leaves change from green to yellow, orange, or red and blanket our streets with their beauty.

As the seasons change, we ask our followers to share their photos of the current season. With over 100 entries, the Fall Photo Challenge has once again been a big hit with our Facebook and Twitter communities. Twitter and Instagram users tagged their photos with #chicofall, while Facebook users posted on our wall. Here are some of our favorites:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.