Published: Sept. 26, 2017

Your time at CU Boulder is the perfect opportunity to try new things—when you may have more flexibility to join groups, attend events and participate in activities to find out what you like and don’t like and where you fit in. Enjoy the journey!

Dean of Students and AVC for Student Affairs Akirah Bradley

Dean of Students and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Akirah Bradley

One of the best ways to discover new things about yourself and find your place on campus is to get out of your comfort zone and get involved. But sometimes this is easier said than done, right? Going outside of your comfort zone takes effort, and occasionally it can be scary! But making that effort often leads to really great experiences.

I made a life-changing decision last year that required me to step out of my comfort zone, and I bet many of you can relate to this experience. Last year, I moved from California to Colorado when I accepted the position of associate vice chancellor of student affairs and dean of students at CU Boulder. Of course, I had some reservations about moving to a new state—what if I didn’t fit in? What if the culture wasn’t right for me? What if I couldn’t handle all the snow in the winter? I was pretty comfortable in California, but I also knew I shouldn’t let those reservations hold me back from a good opportunity. 

I’m happy I made the decision to embrace the unknown, as it has led to a rewarding experience here at CU Boulder. The Buff community could not have been more welcoming, and I’m still able to hike and enjoy hobbies I had in California. I’m actually stepping outside of my comfort zone again this winter: I’ve signed up for skiing lessons, which will be completely new for me. I’m nervous but excited!

I strongly encourage all of you to go out and try new things. I know how easy it is to stay in your room and text your friends from home, but you end up missing out on so many experiences by staying comfortable with what you already know. You might be happily surprised by what you find you enjoy and who you meet. 

Many offices in the division of student affairs, including the Center for Student Involvement, the Cultural Unity and Engagement Center, the Volunteer Resource Center, the Gender & Sexuality Center, Women’s Resource Center, and the Rec Center are great resources to start figuring out how you can get involved.

I look forward to hearing your stories of how you went out of your comfort zone and how it’s enhanced your experience here at CU Boulder.

Akirah Bradley,
Dean of Students and Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs