Qualifying exams

I PASSED MY QUALIFYING EXAMS!!! So I figured I might as well reflect upon my experience, and hopefully this will help other biosciences grad students as well. For those not familiar with 1st year quals, it’s an additional stepping stone before we take our more commonly known 2nd year quals, which all program should have. For…

Sunday, 05.14.17

I spent this whole week planning out my experiments. This portion involves the monitoring of algal growth and lipid production, which is stuff I’m familiar with. I’ve been running practice readings this week and going over my old protocols for these procedures. The part after this is going to be very photosystem II-oriented, which is…

Summer Goals

Tuesday, 05.09.17 Classes have ended last Thursday, but yesterday marked the day I turned in my last assignment for this semester! It feels amazing to be done with everything! So, from now until the release of the qualifying papers on May 25th, I will just have lab during the day and nothing at night. Given the…

Saturday, 05.06.17

At the beginning of this week, I expressed frustration at my current and only task in lab: literature reading. It was so frustrating to read and read and read about one particular topic and to come up with something novel and work off of it. Yes, that is in the job description of a graduate…

Highland Park in the Spring

Thursday, 04.27.17 I’ve recently developed a small, but quickly growing, obsession with Highland Park, a small borough with two sides surrounded by the Raritan River. It has an quaint, old-town vibe with one main street running through the entire borough and small, residential streets orthogonally branching away from it: one side going towards Donaldson Park, which borders…

Friday, 04.14.17

Today is the day I officially join the Dismukes Lab! I’ve been in lab since this Monday, but the paperwork has just been finalized today. It’s pretty exciting. I feel very relieved to have found a lab to settle in and will no longer be rotating. Here’s a brief overview of this week, starting with the…

02.23.17 Update

It’s been awhile since my last post. I’m currently on my second semester of graduate school, and things have slowed down so much since the first semester. So, to catch up: I’m currently on my 3rd rotation, and I’m quite enjoying it. The smaller lab dynamics is reminiscent of my favorite undergraduate lab, where I…

9/17/16

Since it’s my first semester of grad school, the program does not allow us to take any other classes aside from our main ones. That means no ballet classes for 4 months! The ballet classes at the university gym offers ballet 1 and 2, but the classes meet only once a week for an hour and…

Status of 1st Week: DONE!

I just finished my first week of grad school! Only 250 more to go! JK hahaha 😂 Lame jokes aside, the week went pretty well! It started off with my usual anxiety about missing class, deadlines, readings, etc. You name it, I worried about it. It’s just my normal back-to-school ritual: first, I underestimate the…

Pre-Grad School Adventures

The 2.5 weeks since I’ve moved from Irvine, California to Piscataway, New Jersey were spent at Target and IKEA, where I tried to make a  a familiar home out of this strange new place. Besides settling in and getting ready for school and lab rotations, I somehow managed to make a 12-hour drive to Chapel Hill,…

CA to NJ Trip

My parents and I left California on Thursday, 8/11 and arrived in New Jersey on Sunday, 8/14. Here are some pictures of the trip:   We would stop for gas every so often, and if my dad got tired, I would switch with him. We stayed in hotels somedays and for other days, we slept…

Study Tips from the Past for the Future

In preparation for grad school, I’m jotting down what helped me get through and enjoy upper division biology course and lab work with straight A’s. It’s mostly meant as a reference for me, but if it helps anyone else, that’s a plus! During my senior year of college, I finally got 4.0 for every quarter…