Shared Joy is Twice the Joy, Shared Pain is Half the Pain

A Typical Day at Nuclear “Camp”

Admittedly, this week is a bit more stressful than the last couple of weeks have been, what with lab report due dates stacking up and a professor who has four days of four hour-long lectures and plans to teach four chapters. But based on the last 18 hours, I thought it might be fun to throw together a daily “schedule” so there isn’t any confusion – this isn’t actually a nuclear summer camp.

6:30am: Wake up. Shower. Eat Breakfast. Pack bag.

7:45am: Leave the dorm. Bike to the classroom (about a 7 min bike ride, so just over a mile, probably). Try to finish reading the chapter you’re about to be taught. (Fail)

8:30am: Lecture starts. (Chapter 11)

12:15pm: Lecture ends. Lunch starts. Homework is assigned. (Due tomorrow, of course.)

12:45pm: Return from eating lunch to work on the homework. (Complete 5 of 7 problems)

2:00pm: Seminar begins.

5:00pm: Seminar ends. Return to dorm.

*Note that approximately 2 days each week, we have a seminar in the afternoon. The remaining 3 afternoons are spent either in lab or touring various facilities on BNL’s campus.

5:30pm: Continue working on lab report. (Started over the weekend, due tomorrow)

6:30pm: Make dinner. Discuss report and associated discussion questions with classmates over dinner.

7:30pm: Return to room. Continue working on lab report.

8:30pm: Finish lab report. Continue research for paper/presentation (due next week).

9:30pm: Stop researching. Return to homework set.

9:55pm: Complete homework. Begin lab prep for tomorrow.

11:00pm: Finish lab prep for tomorrow. Begin reading Chapter 12 (32 pages).

11:45pm: Give up on reading. Brush teeth. Go to bed. Set alarm for 7:00am so chapter 12 can be completed in the morning. (Write blog post…)

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to be here and I’m ecstatic that I’m learning so much and making connections between previous chemistry classes and my physics classes. I really enjoy the labs because apparently chem lab is just like riding a bike – the techniques might be a bit rusty, but I do in fact remember the basics of pipetting and running a column and even proper acid disposal. But hoooooo boy! is it exhausting. I’ve got two more weeks of using every brain cell in my big head, and then I am taking a well-deserved week off before I go right back to using my brain again. Is this what the real world is like? ‘Cuz if it is, I love it and I hate it at the same time.

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