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The First Few Weeks

Posted on Sep 5, 2010 by | 0 comments

Orientation.  Picking and starting classes. Making lesson plans for labs and seminary.  The past two weeks have been full of preparation, meeting new faces and friends, and redeciding that this is where I want to be.
Orientation was full of tours and Yale facts, swag and still plenty of time to read.  The days passed so slowly. After a chill summer, I wanted to get off to a running start.  But the slow beginning was good but didn’t prepare me for my first day as a chemist here in New Haven.

The Friday before classes started was twelve hours of pure chemistry.  I might not be the only one questioning my devotion to my new choice of life-path after sitting for hours listening to research and safety reminders.  But of course they fed us three not-quite-square but free meals along with alcohol to try and keep us from running away on the first day.  One of my new physical chemistry buddies doesn’t drink either; it’s nice.  I was plum exhausted afterwards and sooo grateful that Jacob picked me up from school.  Below is a picture of the aftermath of just lunch.  Good times.

I have now survived my first three days of being a PhD student.  I freaked out at my lack of ability to do my first problem set.  I had to remind myself that I chose this as a challenge and that I really haven’t figured it all out.  I mean really, it is just day one, er three.  But I hit the books and started to remember what this whole quantum mechanics thing was all about.  No matter what, though, it is going to be a hard semester.

I’m really excited about my classes.  And even more excited that I have already met some really great people to share this experience with.  Chris and Joe are two other first year physical chemistry students and we are taking all the same classes.  I see a lot of study sessions in the future. I’m also excited about our lab; we get to code in FORTRAN to solve quantum problems, build electronics and vacuums, and play with lasers. And that’s just the first semester.

I’ll be very very busy this semester.  I’m not sure how it will all get done.  But one perk about this working thing is my awesome husband Jacob and his determination to be productive.  In just the first week I have come home to baked bread, mopped floors, and clean kitchens.  Who is this man and how did I not realize we lived under the same roof??

I think I’m in good hands and a safe home and getting to spend every waking hour learning (all the while earning a paycheck).  Life is Good…and full of blessings!

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