Pua McBride became involved in OSU’s Residence Hall Association to keep busy and to try to help other Hawaiian students adjust.
Pua McBride is more than 2,500 miles away from her hometown on Hawaii’s Big Island, but she feels right at home in her OSU residence hall. “I know everyone and am friends with everyone in my hall,” Pua says. “In that respect it’s just like in Hawaii–a small community where everyone takes care of everyone else.”
Pua learned about Oregon State from her high school English teacher, an OSU graduate. Besides the strong programs in her areas of interest, business and education, Pua chose OSU because of the large Hawaiian population. “It made me feel comfortable that I’d be part of that community,” she says.
“I came to OSU with the dream of being a teacher,” Pua says. “As a child of two deaf parents, I learned sign language at a young age and then taught both of my brothers. At OSU I have had the opportunity to teach sign language to other students as a teaching assistant in the Speech Communication 379 (Sign Language) class.”
Realizing that being far from the comforts of home can often be hard for Hawaiian students, Pua decided to run for office in Finley Hall. She thought that if she could design programs of interest to Hawaiian students they would be more likely to be active in their residence hall and it would help keep them from becoming homesick.
“I know that it’s important to be involved and active,” she says. “I have been so busy that I haven’t had the time to be homesick.”
As her first year progressed Pua took on more responsibility, becoming active in the Residence Hall Association, serving as the National Communications chair and the Educational Programs Activities chair. She had the opportunity to attend two national leadership conferences through RHA and plans to continue this year as the Fundraising/Marketing Communications chair.