University of Southern California
University of Southern California
Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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Student Blog | Anijah

Anijah

How Cooking Helps Me On A Daily Basis

, by Anijah

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I learned how to cook at a very late age. In Guyanese culture, it is common for young girls to learn how to cook at the age of 8 or 9 years of age so that they could start putting food on the table while their parents went to work. Both sides of my family are from an English-speaking country in South America called Guyana. My mother spent half of her life in her home country but my siblings and I were born and raised in North America. Both my sister and I did not learn to cook until we were 12, which is a common age for those who were raised in America.

My mom has always loved to cook since she started. She enjoys cooking traditional Guyanese food and trying new things. My mom was also excited to share her love for cooking with her daughters. However, I was not comfortable in the kitchen until I reached college. Once I entered college and had to cook for myself, I realized that cooking meant a lot to me. After a long day in class or at work, I enjoy coming home and making dinner for myself and my roommates for many reasons. The first being the thrill I get once I have successfully made a new dish without burning it. Since I do have this excitement every time I make a new dish, my phone and social media is filled with pictures of my creations and my Pinterest is filled with future recipes. The smell of onions and garlic in a pan and listening to the sizzling of the food cooking allows me to destress after a busy day.

Cooking is an everyday activity that many people engage in to eat, on the most basic level, and for others, cooking allows them to promote a healthy lifestyle. Engaging in an activity that a person truly enjoys will lead to a better physical and emotional life. For me, spending time in the kitchen allows me to accomplish a meaningful life. For anyone who wants to start learning how to cook it is not too late, just find the right recipe and get started.

Anijah

What USC has done for me (so far)?

, by Anijah

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For a very long time I was unsure about what I wanted to do for my future, but what I did know was that I wanted to attend an amazing university located near my family. The first time I applied to USC I did not get accepted, so I had to decide if this university was what I truly wanted. My twin sister and I soon realized that we definitely wanted to attend USC, so we decided to go through with the Trojan Transfer Plan. Ever since I entered high school, I always had the idea that I would attend a four-year university right after graduation, but I believed I would be most successful at a community college first. I attended a CC where I could compete in track and field while completing the necessary steps to transfer to USC. After one amazing year in Sacramento, CA, my sister and I both got into the university of our dreams, USC.

Transferring into a university can be difficult for many reasons, and it can be even more stressful when you are indecisive about what you want to do. I had always participated in sports, so I believed it would be good to get a degree in Human Biology. With that degree, I could go to physical therapy school. I was nervous to switch my major because it is a huge step in any college student’s life when they do so. While switching my major, I also added on a minor in occupational therapy because it is a healthcare profession that worked closely with physical therapists. My first occupational therapy class discussed how occupations allow people to experience a healthier life. USC is one of the few universities to offer undergraduates the opportunity to learn more about this amazing field as a minor.

Halfway through my first semester at USC, I started to realize that I enjoyed the field of occupational therapy. After doing some research, I found myself at one of the information sessions that the OT division offers. Immediately, I noticed how this graduate program accepted people from all educational backgrounds. After attending the session, I met with my advisor so that I could get on track to attend graduate school for occupational therapy. Deciding to transfer to the University of Southern California was a great decision because I truly believe I would have never found such an amazing career!