The college story collection

Our teachers at CAPO shared some of their most memorable college experiences.


Colette Reitenour

“Hello from Denmark!”

Claire Nguyen, News Editor

“The summer before my junior year of college I decided to stay in [UC] Berkeley and live in a big house with 40+ people while I took a few summer classes. My friend and I moved into the house in early June, and after living in the house for a few days my friend let me know her classmate was going to stop by to drop off some Kettle Chips for us. 

The classmate worked as a Kettle Chips representative, so her job was to pass out as many free bags of Kettle Chips to students as possible to promote the brand. My friend’s classmate originally planned to drop off a trash bag or two filled with Kettle Chips for us to eat over the summer. However, when she arrived in her Kettle Chips minivan and saw that we lived in a huge house she asked if she could instead give us two to three BOXES of Kettle Chips. We said ‘sure, of course! Everyone else who lives here would probably love some Kettle Chips.’

We thought the boxes would be small. We were wrong. Each box ended up being the size of a small kiddy pool and could fit 3-4 people inside each box.

We brought the boxes inside the house and set them down in one of the living rooms. We let everyone in the house know there were Kettle Chips downstairs and they could take as many as they wanted. People were shocked and stoked, to say the least. My friend and I then became known as the “Kettle Chip Girls” for the rest of the summer.

Our house finished all three boxes right before 4th of July weekend, so we called up the classmate and got another two huge boxes delivered right away for the house to properly celebrate 4th of July with our favorite snack, Kettle Chips.” Arianna Seyedjafari, Spanish teacher. 


“After applying to University of California, Riverside, I got a call from the dean’s office. He wanted to meet. When I got there he had my college essay in hand. We talked for a few minutes before he rocked back in his big chair and said: ‘We’re going to let you in in spite of this essay.’ Whew. To get out of UCR, I had to go back to that same dean and ask him to change a pass/fail grade in biology to an actual grade so that I could pass. He gave me a long look, rocked back in his big chair, and said:  ‘I remember you.’ He let me take a ‘D’ in the class so I could graduate. Everything else I did in college was perfect.” Ron Miller, English teacher


“The funniest, most memorable part of Greek life was taking busses to football games at 8 am with all my friends. The themed date parties were fun too! One of the themes was famous couples and I went with a friend as Jack and Jill. It was fun getting dressed up and seeing all the other couples dressed up as well. At every event, there was always a photographer (like there would be at a wedding) and it was hilarious to see all your friends’ pictures later with everyone in character. Also, the fact that the fraternities are gross and dirty and the sororities are old mansions in the Bel Air area. Finally, some of the secret handshakes, songs and traditions made the sorority memorable.” Kimberly Beck, Statistics teacher


“There was a group of guys who were into pranks, like rigging the toilets to flush upwards. One time they pranked this one person and he came storming out of the bathroom all wet yelling at the guys because he knew it was them.”

“One time, they made a slip and slide in our hallway one long weekend. It was fun until the water seeped into the carpet and it started smelling like mildew! The RA who was in charge of our floor hated us!” Deborah Brincks, English teacher


“I had just finished my sophomore year in college and decided to spend a Mayterm (our summer term) abroad. During this Europe Mayterm, my flight from London to Sweden was canceled due to mechanical issues. Since I was traveling with a group, the airlines needed to find a flight with 30-ish seats open. After being stuck at the airport for hours, we were rescheduled on a flight through Denmark to Sweden. We got off the plane in Denmark, took pictures in the Denmark airport and sent postcards home with ‘Hello from Denmark.’ We agreed not to tell our parents until the postcards reached the U.S. Needless to say responses from parents were mixed since Denmark wasn’t on the itinerary, but we did walk away with another country on our passport.” Kristen Raub, Chemistry teacher