Thousands of students returned to Glendale Community College on Monday, the first day of the fall semester that saw plenty of incoming freshmen getting acquainted on campus, which is nestled in Glendale's hills.
"I look forward to all the hikes going up and down the stairs," said Adam Theard, a new student, jokingly.
On a more serious note, the college freshman, who graduated from North Hollywood High School this year, was anxious to meet with advisers and professors to launch him into his career; he plans to become an X-ray technician.
This year, he is also intent on juggling academics, a job and his commitment with the college's football team as a defensive tackle.
"I really don't want to mess up," he said of embarking on his college career. "I don't want to drop the ball on this. I need to do this correctly."
On Monday, he stood with a familiar face — a friend from North Hollywood High — Marvin Becerra, who was waiting for his first college course, a math class, to begin.
Although unsure what he'll pursue later in life, Becerra said he's bound to transfer to Cal Poly Pomona, but still needs to choose a major out of three possibilities — civil engineering, kinesiology or philosophy.
"That's why I'm taking the career-development class," he said with a laugh.
Meanwhile, another new student — Andrea Rodriguez, who transferred to Glendale Community College from Cal State Los Angeles — was waiting for her classes to begin on Monday.
She eventually wants to transfer to a UC school and become a social worker.
"It's a really nice campus, really easy to get around," she said, adding that she wasn't particularly nervous on her first day of classes. "I'm pretty comfortable."
To orient new students with the campus, sophomore Joseph Manssourian welcomed them with maps as a member of the Associated Students of Glendale Community College — a group of 26 students who help monitor all of the clubs' budgets and promote student involvement in campus activities.
"I just hope everyone has a good year," he said.