Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Work Limerick!

I just got this card today from my supervisor thanking me for the year of work that I've done here. I thought you all (especially you Mom) would appreciate having a look at it:

And yes, it is actually a puzzle.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Technical Difficulties

So, like how I've been updating three whole days in a row? Well, it's stopping now, as my computer decided to have itself a clusterf%$#. It began with noticing the case was cracked and continued with my touchpad mouse no longer working. I think it was a driver issue but didn't realize it wasn't an Asus driver until today, when my computer decided to sign its "Don't Resuscitate" clause and no longer accept power from my charger. I barely managed to copy my data over but... oyveh Maria.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Decision

Over the past month or so I have been intermittently looking at graduate schools, as I plan to apply during this coming Fall (is that really only a week and a half away? heh heh, hooo boy...). While looking at graduate programs for Physics I came to a stunning realization: I don't particularly want to go to Physics grad school. It's not that I don't like Physics, far from it; it's just that I honestly can't see myself sitting in a lab and performing experiments for the rest of my life, or even in my near future. Also, it's difficult to find programs with the research that I want to do (*cough* metamaterials *cough*), and most of the other avenues of research that I am interested in easily fall into materials science, which is a different program all together.

So goes my first realization. As I continued to look at programs, I kept on noticing that they were occasionally offering something called "Physics Education." Intrigued, I checked it out and was instantly attracted. Here was a course of study based solely around finding and using better ways to teach people Physics. Some departments didn't have a full fledged Physics Education program but did have Science Education in which one could get a Physics specialty. And enter my second realization: I really like to teach.

I guess this second realization had its roots much earlier this year, when I started teaching classes at Skyline. Sure it was frustrating to get students to come to class and stick with the program, but when they did it was pretty awesome. And then with the GED program I got to branch out and help people learn about different subjects. When I began reading the descriptions of the Science Education depts. I connected the dots and saw that this was what I wanted to do with my life... or at least for the next few years.

So, I am going to forsake research for now and focus on learning to pass on what knowledge I have to others. I'm still debating on whether to go for a masters (lets me teach at high school or community college level) or for a doctorate, but hopefully I'll have that figured out before long.

Until next time...

"To be good is noble, but to teach others how to be good is nobler--and less trouble."
- Doctor Van Dyke speech, by Mark Twain, 1906

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

In At The End

My term of service with CTEP is drawing to a close. Come 3:00 Saturday the 29th I shall be a free man, beholden to no master!

At least until September 8th, anyway. But for now there is (are?) tons and tons of paperwork to do. I've already submitted client data and even had my exit interview, but the major piece left to do is the stuff related to my civic engagement, the E-Waste Project.

Speaking of that, our PSA:

It went over very well at our civic engagement presentation last Friday; here's hoping it continues to kill 'em tomorrow...

But anyway, there's a lot of reporting that we have to do for this project. The CTEP reporting isn't that bad, but since we got a grant to support our project we have to submit all sorts of detailed reports on that end as well. Technically the latter is due the 15th of September, but we'd like to finish it before the 29th if possible.

In other work related news, I no longer have to work 15 extra hours a week anymore! Apparently there was a combination of me working overtime and the computer program forgetting that I had an extra week in there to get things done. So now my Tuesdays and Fridays (except for this week... really weird schedule) are free again! Yay! And we got mango cake at an end of the year work party the other day! Yay!

And I swear that I've done other things besides work in the time between my posts. I saw a couple of Fringe Theater Fest shows, have restarted regular weekly gaming sessions for my Changeling game, been hanging out with various people, discovered a new restaurant/bar that I have had no reason not to have discovered yet (The Bulldog- excellent burgers AND a mostly belgian/craft brew beer list? yes please!), and got to meet the family and bride that Rachel will be maid of honoring for in September (I knew the meeting was going well when the topic of conversation switched to a mix of Daleks and Warhammer minis). And also looking at grad schools and coming to a surprising decision, which I shall detail next time... hopefully...

Until next time,

"The bane of Americans is overwork--and the ruin of any work is a divided interest. Concentrate-concentrate. One thing at a time."
-Letter to Orion Clemens from Samuel Clemens, 5/12/1880