Skip to main content

Welcome to Portland!



Welcome to portland!

Hi – I’m Claire, a new graduate assistant in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at Portland State University, and an incoming MFA candidate in the Creative Writing program. I am a Minnesotan transplant, born and raised in Saint Paul, but have lived in Portland for years now. I first moved to Portland for my undergraduate degree, and I fell in love with this city and the Pacific Northwest. I count myself lucky to live, work, and study in this incredible place. 

Portland has a lot to offer, and I can’t wait to share with you some of my favorite things to do, eat, and experience near campus and farther afield. I am a big outdoor nerd, and to me, one of the best things about living here is our access to the great outdoors. Portland has some excellent local options to explore (Forest Park, Mount Tabor) as well as huge networks of trails just outside the city (Columbia River Gorge, Mount Hood). On weekends, you can usually catch me in the forest, soaking up the fresh air and mountain views.

Author hiking over a log bridge above a creekCrossing a stream on a rainy day on a hike outside of Portland

I’m also a big fan of the city’s food scene. I love to explore the varied and delicious restaurants and bars tucked away in all the neighborhoods, and as a former vegan, I keep an eye out for places that are accessible to all. I can’t say no to a tasty beverage, either, whether an expertly made cup of tea or coffee, or a craft beer or cocktail. I am excited to explore with you some of the ever-changing food scene, both in and near our immediate campus and farther out in our extended campus that is the city of Portland. 

Sitting at a table at the Bye and Bye, a local vegan restaurant, with a bowl of food and a beerEnjoying a meal while studying at the Bye and Bye, a vegan restaurant in Northeast Portland

Finally, now that most COVID restrictions have been lifted, another beloved aspect of this city is coming back to life: the incredible music scene. Portland is a thriving hotbed of creativity, and live music can be found any night of the week. As a musician who cut her teeth playing gigs in downtown Portland, there is a special place in my heart for the music community here. Whether a free show at a dive on the outskirts of town, or a sold-out concert at one of our renowned concert halls, outdoor event spaces, or arenas, you are sure to find something that you will enjoy. I hope that you’ll join me in supporting the local musicians and venues that make this such a great place for live music.

Portland is a weird and wonderful place to live and explore, and as students at Portland State University, we are perfectly situated to do just that! I can’t wait to share resources and tips with you about campus life, the university, and the city itself. Keep it weird, and see you around!