Friends appreciating their surroundings.

Do you think of learning as an activity primarily done indoors, in a generic classroom with uncomfortable chairs? A recent Berkeley Connect Social Welfare field trip shattered that stereotype. Students got a breath of fresh air as they walked around the Berkeley Botanical Garden in the hills above campus, enjoying the amazing variety of plants and the scenic vistas all around them.

Education doesn’t have to be conventional. Learning about topics that aren’t directly related to your major can be one of the most fulfilling experiences at Berkeley. These Social Welfare students learned about flora and indigenous plants to California; you don’t have to be a botany student to appreciate how fascinating nature is.

Making friends among the redwood trees.

Many students weren’t aware that the botanical garden even existed. Michelle Zhou, a freshman, said, “This is my first time going to the botanical gardens. Through Berkeley Connect, I was able to see beautiful scenery and nature.” The students visibly relaxed as they took in the sights of the colorful flowers, stunning succulents, and native plants.

The students were able to appreciate not only the nature that surrounded them, but the reasons behind it. Many expressed gratitude towards Berkeley Connect for showing them the site, and the center itself for hosting such a plethora of beauty. Freshman Lily Brossus commented, “Berkeley Connect has made me fall in love with my major.”

Freshman Lily Brossus enjoying the nature around her.

For those interested, admission to the Berkeley Botanical Garden is free for UC Berkeley students. For more information, feel free to check out the website at https://botanicalgarden.berkeley.edu/.

Junior Melody Pinalin taking in the redwoods.