03 December 2006

Almost anniversary

We're coming up on one year of post-baccalaureate study so I thought it would be a good time to reflect on what I've learned. Put another way... chapter 9 in organic chemistry just doesn't sound like relaxing Sunday fun.

1. There really is a difference between old schools and new ones. My current institution has a huge endowment and my alma mater, well, it doesn't. Both are great schools, but the facilities the endowment affords really are nice. Several large libraries, each with sturdy wooden tables, lots of private study rooms (with laptops and plasma screen tvs), and laptops you can borrow for 4 hours. A 4 story gym with lots of equipment so you don't have to wait for machines or court times. Edible food.

2. There really is a difference between a top tier university and a middle tier. I'm sure you can do great things attending either, but at a great school the opportunities come to you. Brands, even when it comes to education, have power.

3. Organic chemistry is not as scary as Matter and Interactions II (honours physics II). S. and C. must have been out of their minds when they designed the curriculum for M&I II. They took a subject I loved and made it hell (bad enough I left the major), wheras organic is actually kind of fun. My hexane has a first name, it's c -y -c -l -o...

4. Getting into medical school really is that hard. There are so many hoops, most of them totally pointless and it costs a fortune.

5. Academia is just as political as the "real world". Grant money and tenure are no more a meritocracy than any other industry. The tweed and white coats just make it look that way.

6. Coffee. It's not longer recreational use.

7. Saturday labs really do suck, no matter how late they start. I've had Sat. lab for the last year, first at 9am, then 12pm, now 11am... and nothing sounds better than next semester when, for the first time since returning to school, I will have no lab class!

8. I am not a party girl. I used to look with envy at the people with busy social lives in college, but honestly, I very much enjoy dinner or a movie with friends and wearing my PJ's as much as humanly possible.

9. Diet coke is better than diet pepsi, and sierra mist free is better than diet sprite.

10. I'm going to enjoy being a doctor (but I'm definately not going to be a pathologist).

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