Category Archives: School

Protected: List of Things I Miss about Grad School

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Another Anniversary

Today is August 26, 2016.

My first day at the University of Idaho was August 26, 2006.

Today marks 10 years since I started my post-secondary education. If you’d asked me in 2006 what I thought I’d be doing in 10 years, I certainly wouldn’t have answered, “just finishing up school!” Hell, when I first started college, my goal was to get out as fast as possible. Grad school? Sounded like a waste of time. Why would I want to spend more time in school?

That was the plan: get out as fast as possible. And while I usually hate it when things don’t go according to plan, I am actually quite happy with how my educational path has carved its way through the past 10 years. I mean, I’ve gotten five degrees in a decade. That’s not too shabby.

  • 2008: B.S., psychology
  • 2009: B.S., philosophy
  • 2011: M.A., psychology
  • 2014: B.S., mathematics
  • 2016: M.S., statistics

I also like how each one of these degrees has had some part in making me realize what I really, really enjoy and want to do with my life (teaching stats). No part of the past decade of education was wasted (except for maybe that business calculus class. Screw that class, man). That’s a good feeling.

ALSO, I have zero debt. Zero. This is because of my parents. My dad paid for everything for my first round of undergrad (3 years), then let me stay at his place rent-free during my second round of undergrad (2 years). My mom has paid for all my moving-around-the-continent costs and let me live rent-free with her in Arizona while I worked to save up money to eventually go back to school. That’s pretty amazing. Thanks, mom and dad.

So yeah. I figured a post acknowledging 10 years of college/grad school was needed, because 10 years is a long damn time to be doing anything.



Guess who successfully defended their thesis this morning?


It honestly didn’t feel like as big of a deal as my first defense did back in 2011. Maybe it’s because I knew what to expect since I’d done it before. Maybe it’s because I felt more prepared and confident about the subject matter this time around. Maybe it’s because I’m just older and more mature than I was in 2011 and am less prone to freaking out.*

But it doesn’t matter, ‘cause now I’m DONE! I just have a few minor corrections/additions to make, then send the thesis off to the online Vault so that it’s officially submitted.


*Who am I kidding? I’ll always be prone to freaking out.

Protected: *rage scholar*

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Protected: Grad school? More like BAD school, amirite?

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Holy crap, I did waaaaay better on that STAT 723 final than I thought I did. He must have curved it.

But anyway, that was the last final I’ll ever have to take for the last class I’ll ever have to take.

I say that, but then again, I’ve said that several times since 2008, so

I’m a cayenne pepper. WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU????/???

UGH, that test was brutal. Like, the problems were all very similar to the homework questions, but they were all similar to the six most difficult homework questions. The ones that required weird-ass tricks that were somewhat unrelated to the material we needed to know for the class.

But whatever, you know? Either I make it through this class or I have to stay an extra year and torment those who don’t want me around.

Those who shall not be named.


Fake It ‘Till You…Fake It, I Guess

Do you know what time of the year it is?


Let’s do it.

HIST 411: Colonial North America (10:30 – 11:20)
MATH 310: Ordinary Differential Equations (11:30 – 12:20)
BIOL 120: Human Anatomy (12:30 – 1:20)
MATH 579: Combinatorics (1:30 – 2:20)

CS 360: Database Systems (12:30 – 1:45)
GEOG 301: Meteorology (2:00 – 3:15)
MUSA 121: Concert Band (4:30 – 5:20)

BIOL 120: Human Anatomy Lab (8:30 – 11:20)

ENGL 582: Techniques of Fiction (5:00 – 7:50)



Had a midterm today.

Feel dead.

Sorry for crappy post.

I’m a-feared


It wasn’t awful, but I know I made at least one—maybe two—stupid little mistakes. I’m hoping Dr. Lu will be merciful and see that I do understand what I’m doing, I just made dumb math errors.

‘Cause that’s what I do.

Now it’s time to do nothing school-related for the rest of the day.

Sorry I keep posting about school. (I’m not sorry at all.)

This video accurately depicts the change in my attitude and approach to grad school, pre- and post-February 2nd.

The day you identify with a HowToBasic video is the day you know that things have gone horribly wrong.

Protected: *angry sigh*

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I am DONE with the first draft of my thesis introduction. Last time I did this, I thought the introduction was the hardest/most work-intensive part of the whole thing to write. So considering I’ve got all my simulations done and just need to write up the results, I’m guessing it’s the same sort of thing this time around.

So it’s nice to have that first rough draft done, even though it is just a rough draft.

Plus, I don’t think I’d made this much progress until April or so last time.


It Begins!

Okay, so unlike Thesis: Round I in 2011, I’ve actually started my thesis writing now—in January—versus in March. Which is probably a good thing. I also feel like I understand what I’m actually doing WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY better than I did back then.

I also care a lot more.

So yeah. Hopefully things will go a lot smoother than they did last time, but I guess we’ll see.



Winter Semester 2016: COMMENCE!

It’s time for the final semester of the Masters program! I’m excited. Well, excited for it to be over. Excited to (hopefully) get this degree. I’m hoping to be done with the thesis stuff by May so that I can defend then and just not worry about anything over the summer. That would be SO NICE and SUCH A GREAT CONTRAST to last time in 2011.

I just want to teach, man. That’s the end goal of all of this.

I just. Want. To. Teach.


Had the final for Dr. Chen’s class this morning, which means I’M FREE OF THIS SEMESTER!

(Except not really. I have to invigilate a test on Monday at freaking 7 PM.)


Now it’s thesis time for real. My goal is to get it done by May at the latest, but we’ll see.

I’m already ridiculously nervous.


Hooray, a 33/30 on that test!

That makes me super happy. Not as happy as A’s on BOTH of those freaking tests, but it least it raises my average up to an A- in the class.

Now all that is left is the final.

Bring it on.

(I’m going to go pass out from relief.)


Test = done

UGH THE TEST IS OVER. I think I did okay. Hopefully. I kind of “blacked out” during it, meaning that I don’t really remember doing any of it, it just kind of happened.

But that’s good! That’s something that usually happens when I know the material well, and it usually results in a good grade.