Garrett Teng ‘23 can’t remember exactly when he first started playing water polo--he was somewhere around 8 or 9 years old--but he remembers falling in love with it right away. As a rising junior at Orange Lutheran, Garrett plays on the Lancers’ water polo team and practices about 10 hours per week.
“When I’m in the pool playing water polo, I’m just in the zone and not focused on anything else,” he says.
Garrett is one of the many students at Orange Lutheran who combine in-class learning with online coursework as part of OLu's Blended Program. If it’s a weekday morning, you’ll see Garrett Teng on campus. Come afternoon and you’ll see him catching up on coursework on his iPad or in the pool.
Header photo by KJL Sports Photography
“Doing school remotely helps me with water polo because I don’t have the stress of having to get something done right away,” Garrett says. “I can finish work before practice or after a game. It’s super flexible.
A common misconception about online classes is that they are lonely, isolated experiences, but that’s certainly not the case at Orange Lutheran. In fact, Garrett found himself with more free time to hang out with the friends made in person and online thanks to the ability to be in control of his schedule. Blended students can also attend dances, student activities, mission trips, and other activities on- and off-campus.
For the student who may be concerned about sacrificing their social life for flexibility, Garrett has some advice.
“You still get social activity at school because you’re not fully online, and you make friends online too, so you don’t have to worry about it.”
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Beth Fitzgerald is Orange Lutheran's Director of Marketing and Communications and proud Orange Lutheran alumna. She holds a BA in Communication Studies from Chapman University and an MA in Organizational Leadership from Concordia University Irvine.