THE BLOG

Whitney Port at UCLA

02/04/2013 01:13 pm ET | Updated Apr 15, 2013

I never imagined that I would have a short chat with Whitney Port's mom about mod podge and crafts. As a form of stress release during midterm season, I have been crafting D-I-Y drink coasters. On a whim, I made a Whitney and Lauren coaster. When UCLA's Campus Events Commission (CEC) held a speaker event with Ms.Whitney Port on Jan. 30, I brought the coaster in case there was a slight chance Whitney would sign it. Whitney kindly took pictures with all the students at the event. As she signed the coaster, she asked me to show it to her mom. As a huge "Hills" and "City" fan, I couldn't really believe what was going on. Moments like these are why I love my time at UCLA.

The lecture hall was filled with students who had all been touched by Whitney in some way. Whitney spoke about her life on the reality shows and her work in the fashion industry. The event included audience Q&A. One student asked Whitney a very entertaining hypothetical question: "If you discover that you are adopted and you could choose your two parents, which celebrities would you choose to be your parents?" Her answer? President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. Another student earnestly asked, "How do you stay so beautiful?" But quite seriously, she is absolutely gorgeous and tall in person.

Here we were, a room filled with Bruins intently listening to Whitney's every word. At one point, I looked around the room and most girls had the same facial expression: absolute adoration. We were mesmerized by Whitney. Though she didn't know us, we knew her. We grew up with "Laguna Beach," "The Hills" and "The City." Throughout the years, we watched these ladies transition from their teenage years to their adult years.

Back in high school, my best friends would draw pictures of what our lives would be like in college. We modeled ourselves after Lauren, Lo, Audrina and Whitney. We had our similarities between the girls and had our own share of wonderful drama. We had our Jasons and Justin Bobby moments. When I was in a spat with a close Heidi-like friend, I automatically quoted Lauren's "You know what you did. You did something shady and you did it behind my back." To this day, we still quote bits and pieces from the MTV reality shows.

At the talk, we learned a bit of what happened on the shows and what an ordinary day in the life of Ms.Whitney Port is like. The main lessons I took away from her talk was: do internships, get work experience, respect others and work hard. Later that week, I met up with a fellow "Hills" and "City" fan for coffee. We discussed the event and both agreed on how much we liked her talk. She seemed like a relatable gal we could easily be friends with--down to earth, entertaining and humble. Perhaps that's why so many of us fell in love with "The Hills" and "The City."

These wonderful "full circle" moments where the memories of the past weaves into the realities of the present are the precious moments that I cherish. Years from now when I look back at my college years, I am sure I will always remember the night when my friends and I met Whitney Port.