Posts Tagged ‘school’

April 1

Posted: April 1, 2011 in Academia, Life
Tags: ,

This is what BioE Seniors do when graduation is imminent.

Over 9000

Can’t wait to be done with school.



Posted: March 4, 2011 in Life
Tags: , , , ,

I started this year with many expectations. I expected the upcoming climbing season to be a lot of fun, I expected to stay strong, I expected to graduate, and I expected to have a plan for the coming Fall. Expectations can be exciting, but they’re also very scary. What if I injured myself? Would that ruin my entire summer? What if I failed out of school? What if I couldn’t get into graduate school? Life is challenging because we don’t know how anything is actually going to turn out.

The first part of the year has been a resounding success. Climbing has been fun. Even though I’ve only been able to climb less than once a week due to school, I still feel strong. The Northwest Collegiate Climbing Comp series has been going on in full force, and I’ve gone to the comps at both Western Washington University and here at the UW. Didn’t place in either of them, but they were both exciting experiences, especially when I rooted for my friends in finals.


WWU Comp 2011

In two weeks I’m going back to God’s little rock playground, Smith Rock State Park in Oregon. I’m feeling strong as ever, and can’t wait to have a good time. Arguably the best part of the trip will be the chance to see old friends, Nick is coming back in town. Nick took me on my first “real” (meaning more than 5.5) multipitch trad climb, and I’m super excited to climb with him again.

School on the other hand, has been proving to be quite a challenge for me. After a not-so-good application to graduate school, I was worried about my prospects of getting in. At the same time, it was getting more and more difficult to stay motivated in my coursework, as I was starting to get disillusioned with academia and my ability to stay in it for another 2 years. However, my plans changed.

College is a place for education, and it’s important that students come in with a sense of direction. Rather than just taking only general education classes for four years, students have to declare a field of interest, and study hard to get a degree in that field. However, college is also a place for soul-searching. The best laid plans coming into school might change, as four years of university education often change a person. I was initially extremely resistant to this change, and wanted to follow the written-in-stone plan of going to graduate school, acquiring a Masters or a PhD, and going on to be a research scientist, doctor, whatever. But things in my life seemed to point me away from it, and I finally allowed God to point me in the direction that he wanted me to go.

I’m looking for work right now. Applying for jobs, doing interviews, the whole deal. And this Fall, it’s beginning to look like I might be moving away from beloved Washington. Climbing, school, jobs, I’m finally starting to grow up.

I certainly didn’t expect that.

Not with a bang, but with a whimper

Posted: December 16, 2010 in Academia

It’s not that I’m lazy. I just don’t care.

Unfortunately, the fact that I don’t care doesn’t make the responsibilities go away. The perfect storm of finals exams, class projects, and graduate school applications hit me like a truck over the past three days, where in a period of 42 hours I accumulated exactly 0 hours of sleep. If I was at my maximum productivity over that entire time span, I probably could have written a screenplay, finished a Masters thesis, and become a gourmet chef. However, at 3 a.m. it’s very difficult to think past the slice of cold pizza I was eating simply to stay awake.

By 5 a.m. on Wednesday early morning, I had taken two final exams, finished one final project, was half way through the other, and working on my personal statement for graduate school. At 2, I was going to a meeting with a professor for a class I’m taking next quarter. At 2:30, I gave a campus tour to a friend visiting from Malaysia. At 4, I had another meeting to discuss the last final project. At 4:30 we gave a presentation on it. At 6:30, I ate the first food I’d had in over 18 hours (thanks Joshua, for buying). At 11, I turned in my final writing for the project, submitted my application, and fell asleep before my head even hit the pillow.

Thursday, 10:30 a.m. Meeting with my research advisor. My body, which was crying for rest, is now simply whimpering because it knows it won’t come until tonight.

I can rest when I’m dead.

End of Year

Posted: December 11, 2010 in Academia

As the end of the quarter draws to a close, the lingering effects of senioritis are driving me to simply stop studying, play some video games, and start my vacation. But alas, real life beckons. After my academic mid-life crisis, my research advisor sat me down and forcefully said “No, you’re applying to graduate school”. So I guess I am. It was a bit of a trip to find 3 people to write letters of recommendation for me, but somehow I was able to do it. Now I just have to write my personal statement by Wednesday.

I have a take home final due on Monday, as well. And an in-class final on Monday morning bright and early at 8:30. And a biochemistry final on Tuesday at 8:30, which realistically will require about 72 hours of straight studying to do well on. And a final project due Tuesday, the figure below representing about 50% of the work that I’ve done on it so far. Actually, that’s not true, the figure simply represents what my motivation to do this project is.

E. coli FimH binding to soluble and insoluble mannose

E. coli FimH binding

And a meeting on Thursday with my research advisor. And a meeting on Thursday with my manager. And another presentation due on Wednesday.

Christmas is in exactly two weeks. It can’t come fast enough.

MATH 394

Posted: November 10, 2010 in Academia

I’m pretty sure I could’ve taken that test in middle school. Probability 1, leaning slightly on the side of being a joke class. We drew Venn diagrams, and calculated powers of 1/2.

Now I’m not complaining, Lord knows that I need less stress in my life, plus a GPA booster. But if I am paying $3000 a quarter for tuition, shouldn’t I be learning something instead of just getting a certificate for what I already know?

I’m still taking Probability 2 next quarter though.