Friday, August 13, 2010

Last Thoughts

As I'm working on this final blog it's slowly coming to me that my time here is coming to an end. Funny how I almost didn't even apply to see last year. My chemistry teacher came up to me one day and asked if I would be interested in applying. Meanwhile I just failed the last two chem test and you think I want to do this for the summer! I really didn't think of applying since I felt wasn't going to be accepted. But I decided to apply and a couple of months later out of nowhere Dr. Aitken called saying I was accepted. After the excitement phase came the (what did I get myself into) phase. But once I got here things were easier (especially since everyone else knew as much as me). I've gone through many experiences that were both good and bad. It was nerve racking presenting in group meetings, since other professors and grad students were there. Presenting at the symposium was an incredible experience being next to college students who had much more experience than us.

The field trips we went on including Bayer, PPG, Mylon and my favorite Washington and Jefferson College. They were all interesting in their own way and the car rides to and from were great.

But not everything was fun and games though. The weeks before the symposium and during the lab reports were both frustrating and time consuming. But when looking back on it I do appreciate Mr. Lucas taking his time working on our papers, (especially mine). I hope to think that my grammar skills have improved somewhat since being here.

At the end of it all I learned an incredible amount of knowledge about Chemistry. I worked with HPLC and Microfluidics and accomplished a lot in my short time here. I feel that I made an impact in my lab and it certainly boost my confidence for anything I do later on in life.

There are so many people to thank for helping me here so let me start.

First, I would like to thank Dr. Aitken for choosing me to do this summer research program. I hope she feels she made the right decision by selecting me.

My professor Dr. Mitch Johnson for his guidance and help on me understanding my project.

My student mentors Angela and Sean for their patience and knowledge and help. I know that without them I wouldn't have understood anything.

Mr. Josh Lucas for being my temporary guardian for these past two summers. Everything he has done has been appreciated and I give him my eternal gratitude.

And of course the friends that I made over these summers. Amanda, Sydney, Terrance, Candy, James, Mary, Chris, Ian, Liz, and Marissa have given me memorable moments that I won't soon forget. Thank you everyone.

Everyone says how proud they are of me for sacrificing my summer to do hard research at a program. And every time I laugh inside thinking that "sacrifice" was never the adjective in my mind to describe my time here at Project SEED.

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