Thursday, December 11, 2014

The end

Today during the feedback session, I was quite subdued compared to how many questions I usually ask. I guess I just didn't have that many suggestions for improvements. It's definitely one of the best classes I've ever had. I enjoyed pretty much every step of the way (well, in hindsight). Just to list a few things that were awesome and shouldn't be changed:
- Presentations on how to write research papers and give scientific presentations
- Teaching us how to make quality figures
- Feedback on the reports
- Coming up with a novel proposal (which was way harder than I thought XD)
- It's ok if we mess up
- The barrage of questions will be answered
- Having cookies at office hours
- ... and many more.

109 is a lab class, but it's really more like research training. We learned a lot of skills, and that's what it takes to be a researcher. From wet lab techniques and research design to paper writing and grant-proposal-esque presentations, we've covered it all. I feel much more equipped for future research. Even though it was sometimes painful, it was well worth the effort. I was chatting with my parents who are researchers in biology, and they were totally jealous of what we do in 109. I feel like a lot of what we learned people learn by trial and error in grad school. It's pretty amazing that we figure a lot of it out in undergrad.

109 was also great at giving us a sense of what BE actually is. Since several posts have elaborated on this, I won't belabor the point. Suffice to say that I'm glad I stuck with BE. Plus I have this to show off now:

After a few long summers of working in lab, I wasn't sure how I feel about research. But 109 has gotten me excited about doing research again, so that's pretty great :D

Also, most importantly, the safe environment that 109 set up was amazing. I've never felt so comfortable in a class. I'm usually pretty quiet in class, not asking that many questions. But in 109, I felt totally comfortable doing so, and that was a huge relief. Thank you, 109 staff!! I will miss that. A lot.

Looking back, we accomplished a ton. I should be ecstatic that 109 has ended, considering the amount of work that I am now excused from and how much additional time I now have, but really, I'm getting nostalgic already. It's bittersweet. I'm a music nerd at heart, so here's something to take a listen to: Ashitaka and San

Peace out.

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