Fish Sauce by Anhthao Bui

Fish Sauce by Anhthao Bui
Fish Sauce is realistic fiction, and Anhthao’s second anthology collection.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

California State University Los Angeles ‬ Sonnet

In two thousand thirteen 
First stepped on the campus 
The view has been seen  
Fascinating Confucius    
Inspiring His Genius     
Eastern culture reveals  
Igniting learning trust   
Knowledge brings zeal  
Proud Bald Eagle stands still 
Praising the mighty United States
Cal State provides all fields  
Promising radiant fate        
For those who are working hard
For those who play triumphed cards

July 15, 2014

The Top- Notch College

I am spending another summer in Los Angeles with Dan. This summer we did not plan any activity because Dan is working in the summer session at California State University Los Angeles. Dan got a one-year contract for teaching as a Lecturer in English at Cal State Los Angeles. We exhaled the financial worries and insecurities we experience each semester. In the California State University system, no college guarantees a long-term teaching contract to part-time instructors until they are on the seniority list or sign a contract. Dan told me that the teachers’ union helped him to prepare his portfolio, and Dr. James Garrett, the English Department Chair, wrote good comments and feedback about him. Thus, Dan got the contract. We considered Mr. Ruben Quintero, the former English Department Chair who originally hired Dan, our well-wisher. We regarded Dr. Garrett as our backup.

            Every day, Dan called me with updated information about the University. He excitedly told me about the union meetings, the English Department meetings, the new President’s Inauguration, a retirement party, his new office, and those people Dan met and talked to. Jackie, the union representative, and Yolanda and Jeanne, the administrative assistants from the English Department, often asked about me. Dan liked to communicate with his colleagues and students. Sometimes I warned him not to take his coworkers’ valuable time, but he assured me that he only talked to them for a short time before or after the class meetings. Dan has taught for two years at Cal State L.A. He also feels as comfortable, welcomed and supported at Cal State L.A. as he does at East Los Angeles College, where he has taught for nearly 15 years.

            At Cal State Los Angeles, the instructor-to-student ratio is low. Dan often teaches only 15 to 20 students in each classroom. Therefore, Dan has more time to work with each student on their individual needs. The online student feedback system is new to me. Dan has learned new teaching strategies and methods from his experienced colleagues to enhance his teaching techniques. This quarter, Dan teaches a new course for entering freshmen to prepare them to write academic college essays. Jim, the English Department Chair, hopes to familiarize high school graduates with new writing tools so they will not panic when writing university-level essays. The course syllabus is simple, and all instructors teaching this course use the same teaching methods.

            In addition to the campus’ fascinating view and friendly community, I choose California State University Los Angeles as a top-notch university because of its daily updates on Facebook. The campus offers free activities, such as concerts. The information is posted everywhere, so students can view it easily. Once when I accompanied Dan to the school, we came early and stayed in the parking lot to work. I accessed the internet on my laptop. I provided my information as a visitor, signed in, and was using the internet within five minutes. Amazing! Last but not least are the restrooms. I have visited the campus several times, and have used the restrooms in different areas. I have always been happy with the clean restrooms.

            California State University Los Angeles provides a high-quality education. The administration keeps building the campus structure, upgrading the university’s technology, enhancing its scope of teaching, expanding its social network, and adjusting and taking care of the personal lives of individuals like a big family, to meet the needs of education in the twenty-first century. California State University Los Angeles is a top-notch university in the titanic city of Los Angeles.

Anhthao Bui

Los Angeles: July 17, 2014