Spring Break Destinations for Students

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Although it’s only a week, Spring Break provides a much needed reprieve for students after the grind of Winter Quarter. The activities planned by Spring Breakers run the gamut from traveling to competing to computing. On The Hill asked students to share some of their Spring Break plans with the rest of us. What are you doing for spring break?
I’m going to a track meet in Arizona where I’m competing in javelin and discus.
-Zaybree Haury, second-year sociology major
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I’m going to work on my mobile app called Bruinlife that gives students access to dining hall menus as well as fitness and nutritional information.
-Matthew Decoste, fourth-year computer science student
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My plan is to go back to Northern California and relive some of my past before I go back to Malaysia.
-Atira Shukri, a fourth-year IDS student
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Well my friend lives in the Virgin Islands so I’m looking forward to the clean beach water there.
-Ashley Knights, fourth-year anthropology student
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I’m going to be in New York City and I’m super excited about finally being able to call out for a taxi.
-Kenya Simms, a fourth-year gender studies student
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I’m headed back to my hometown for San Francisco so I can attend my uncle’s wedding.
-Emily Tom, a first-year biochemistry student
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I’m going to Beyond Wonderland, an EDM music festival.
-Melissa Mendoza, a fourth-year biology student
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Best Cafes to Study at in Westwood

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The rapidly encroaching realization that finals are coming can draw even the most hardened procrastinators out of their apathy. Unfortunately on-campus study space is limited when every student at UCLA is coming to the same conclusion. Luckily, there are plenty of spots out in Westwood that provide a serene studying environment while also offering some delicious drinks and snacks to get you through your educational woes.

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Spring Break Meal Options

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Welcome to spring break! WOO! YOU’RE AT THE BEST POSSIBLE PLACE YOU CAN BE THIS WEEK. ON CAMPUS. Just kidding. Now, if this is your first spring break here, you will know that there are actually no meals offered here during the break by the dining halls.

Therefore, to keep you from scavenging for food, we’ve come up with some cheap alternatives for you instead.

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Student Spotlight: Beat Rhino

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In this week’s student spotlight, we sat down with Beat Rhino, a beat boxer who has been featured in multiple Spring Sing performances with groups such as Bruin Harmony. Learn more about how the name came about find out his favorite dining hall!

  1. Where does the name Beat Rhino come from?

When I started beatboxing, it was with my best friend Eric. One day, one of our friends came up to us and said that Eric’s style is quiet and clean, while mine was powerful like a Rhino. I added “Beat” as a thing that beatboxers sometimes attach to their artist names, like “SFX” (sound effects) in “Faith SFX”.

  1. Tell us about the beat boxing scene. How did you manage to break into the community?

The global beatboxing scene is small, but definitely has been growing in the past couple decades. There’re still people who don’t know what beatboxing is, but there have been many beatboxing videos that have gone viral and national as well as international beatboxing competitions around the world. Right now, Europe has the biggest scene, followed by the Americas and Asia.

My first breakthrough was winning the 2013 Grand Beatbox Battle Wildcard competition, in which a video I submitted was selected among a hundred or so others. Then I won the American Beatbox Championships for the first time in that same year. I think I won these titles because I had a unique set of sounds and style, as well as putting in a lot of time, being persistent — that was my third wildcard competition, and second national championship, respectively — and being open to jamming with other people.

  1. Will you pursue beatboxing as a career, or will it become a side interest?

Yes. It already is my career, except I go to school. Maybe if I decide to go into something else later, I’ll keep it as a side interest, but definitely no plans of that as of right now.

  1. Do you play any other musical instruments?

I played Clarinet for about 7 years til 11th grade, but I haven’t played in a while.

  1. How does it feel like to be part of the emerging Asian American entertainer movement that’s begun to emerge as a result of websites like Youtube and social media?

It feels great. I feel really blessed that I am recognized and people like what I put out. It’s crazy because when I started coming out on social media, no one knew who I was and I just put out content hoping that people would see it, not expecting big numbers like 1 million views or anything. Even though I don’t have anything close to those numbers still, I have a growing fan base that is really supportive of me, largely because of social media.

I also feel really blessed to be part of the Asian American movement. I guess it’s kind of funny because on some of my videos, people will comment “Level: Asian”.

  1. What’s your favorite dining hall, and why?

My favorite is Feast. Even though it’s hit or miss and unhealthy, I go there the most. When the food’s good, it’s amazing! And if I don’t like it, I can opt out to other dining halls or off campus restaurants.

  1. What’s your most iconic freshman year moment?

Performing at Spring Sing with Bruin Harmony. It was awesome because that was the first (and last) year I was in an A Capella group, we had a whole choreography to go with our song, and I had a dubstep solo. It was a really fresh experience. I miss that moment as well as being with the group.

  1. Where would you recommend students to live on the hill?

The newer Sproul dorms. New, centrally located and close to campus. Hitch would be cool too since it was recently renovated and has a basketball court next to it, although they’re pretty far from classes.

You can check out Beat Rhino’s videos here: https://www.youtube.com/user/soulfullhuman/featured

How to Survive the Apocalypse (Finals Week)

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Finals week is coming up. Since UCLA is tight knit and a big community, I guess we could say we’re one big wolf pack. And finals week is kind of like the moon that comes every 10 weeks that transforms us into werewolves. But this metaphor doesn’t really make that much sense because we’re more like zombies than we are werewolves during finals week. Sorry. It’s finals week for me too. I’ve prepared my fort and 3 weeks worth of instant ramen, but before I go into hiding, I have some tips for you all to survive (hopefully).

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Why Should you Host a Bruin?

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Remember being a first year? Remember the apprehension? Remember how tough it was to choose between the schools you had to choose from? Don’t you wish you had a way — some way — to immerse yourself into the school for at least a day so you could make a decision? If any of these thoughts seem familiar, maybe you participated in the Bruin Overnight Experience. If the BOE program isn’t familiar, maybe you’d like to give someone a chance that you didn’t have this April 10th. Here are some other incentives:

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Foundations Dancer: Janna Macatangay

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Janna Macatangay is a member of a new hip hop dance team at UCLA called Foundations. They’re performing WEDNESDAY MARCH 4, 2015 AT 8PM IN THE PALISADES ROOM IN CARNESALE COMMONS! Check em out!

Tell us about Foundations, how did you come across the group?

Foundations Choreography is a hip-hop dance team catered for beginner and intermediate dancers. It’s especially great for those who have never danced a day in their lives, but are still interested in learning (like me)! I saw a Facebook event pages for one of Foundations’ dance workshops and decided to go! When I went, I met Vincent Duong Tang, who’s on the Foundations leadership team. He was really friendly and told me about attending team auditions. The rest is history!

What kind of dance does Foundations focus on most?

They focus mostly on hip-hop. For my dance team’s set, we learned how to do basic body rolling, gliding, waacking, rippling and waving, etc. We even learned a piece that contains some contemporary, which was really fun to learn!

What made you want to take up dancing?

I used to be a huge fan of America’s Best Dance Crew in high school and I loved watching dance videos on YouTube. I always thought they looked so confident and down for anything. But I kept thinking I had two left feet and could never learn how to dance, so I never really pursued it. But this quarter I decided to take off a thousand miles from my comfort zone and try out Foundations.

What is your favorite part about being a member of the group?

Foundations practices has honestly been one of the things I looked forward to going to this quarter. I love that it provides a space for beginner dancers to learn the moves and routines without feeling pressured to automatically get it right the first time. I love how everyone, especially the team directors, is so supportive, understanding, and committed (shout out to Team Take Off and my directors, Sammy Amos and Kevin Yeh!!) When you dance with people who share similar dance levels as you do for hours at a time, it’s hard not to get great vibes and get close with them. Honestly, when I’m with my team, there’s no place I’d rather be.

What are you most excited about for this event?

I’m really excited to finally put all the work and dedication we put from our practices at parking lots into an actual performance for everyone to see and watch. Just thinking about it already gives me the butterflies, and I know it’ll be a rewarding experience.

How long have you been a member?

I’ve been a member since the beginning of this Winter quarter! The commitment for the Foundations dance teams is actually a quarter long, and they hold auditions for dance teams at the beginning of every quarter. Returners can still audition again, there’ll just be new sets every time.

How often does the group perform?

So far, we have one performance per quarter! For this quarter we have our showcase on WEDNESDAY MARCH 4, 2015 AT 8PM IN THE PALISADES ROOM IN CARNESALE COMMONS!! BE WHERE WE ARE!
What’s your favorite memory from living on the hill?

My favorite memory was spilling hot tea on myself at the dining hall. I called it T-Pain.