Gordon, Guthrie W: October 2008 Archives

Open house at UML

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Today I volunteered for open house for the Plastics department. I ran the flat sheet extrusion line and told students and parents about the school. It seemed like the parents were a lot more interested than the kids were, but that is to be expected. I know that when I was looking at colleges I was a lot more interested in the dorm rooms and dining halls, than the classrooms and labs.

I had a lot of fun talking about what I do in school. Itís exciting to see how many doors are opening in front of me. I have been considering a few different options for when I get out of school. I know that I want to get my masters degree. What I donít know, is weather I want to go full time, or work full time and be a part time student. I also donít know where I want to get my masters degree. Here are a few options I have come up with.

1)      Full time grad student in Plastics Engineering at UML and work as a T/A.

2)      Full time grad student in Manufacturing Engineering at BU and try to get T/A or R/A funding. (Iíve always wanted to go to school in Boston!)

3)      Part time grad student in Plastics Engineering at UML and work nearby, trying to get my grad school paid for by an employer.

4)      Part time grad student in Biomedical Engineering at UVM in Burlington VT, working at HUSKY, which is where my first co-op was.

5)      Part time grad student in Manufacturing Engineering at BU and try to get a job at P&G/Gillette, which is in south Boston.

Since I am graduating next winter, I am going to have to start looking into these programs. Its crazy to think about all the different places I could be in about a year from now!

Does anyone else feel overwhelmed with work? Between classes, homework, work, lab reports, group projects, chores and occasionally going to the gym, it seems as if there is no time for anything.  Letís break it down hour by hour.

During the week, there is 168 hours. A college student is supposed to get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Thatís at least 49 hours a week.  For me that means sleeping 5 hours a night and then most of Sunday. That leaves 119 hours in the week.

A full time semester is usually somewhere between 14 and 19 credits. So if you take 17 credits, you spend at least 17 hours in a classroom. Typically, labs and single credit classes last longer than that, so we will say 20 hours. We have 99 hours left and all we have done is slept, gone to class, and slept through class.

If you are like me, you either work to pay bills, you want spending money, or you want to save money. This means you also need to work. Personally, I work 35 hours between 3 part time jobs. I know that sounds insane, but itís really the only way to save money while paying bills. The week is down to 64 hours.

You are supposed to spend 2 hours on homework for every credit you take. So wake up, go to class, go to work, do your homework, you have 30 hours left in your week.

Are you hungry yet? Iíd say most of us spend around 1 Ĺ hours eating or preparing food everyday. That means our week is down to 19.5 hours.

Trying to stay in shape? Thatís about 30 minutes per day.  Only 12 hours left this week.

So that means, we have about 1.7 hours of personal time per day? Thatís it? Is that even enough? Of course it isnít! Who studies 17 hours a week? Who sleeps 7 hours a night? I guess the best way to look at it, is that youíre not the only one who has to do it. The way I see it, I would rather struggle now so that I am comfortable later.

Comparisons

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Since I couldnít think of one entire subject for this blog, I compared a few smaller ideas.

Living in an apartment as opposed to living in a dorm:

Advantages: Living in an apartment gives you a lot more freedom than living in a dorm room. The biggest plus is getting the room to your self. You also only have to share the bathroom with a couple people, instead of an entire floor. There are no quiet hours, and you can have more than two guests over at a time. On top of all that, you never have to worry about signing in. Another great advantage is not depending on a meal plan, since you have a kitchen to cook in.

Disadvantages:  The more space you have the more that you need to clean. Splitting up chores amongst roommates is no fun, and it is impossible to live together without stepping on each otherís toes. Another disadvantage is the lack of convenience that a dorm room has, such as the laundry room. I hate going the Laundromat!

Working full time as opposed to being a full time student:

Advantages: MONEY! The best part about working is that someone pays you for it. For the two internships I worked, it was Monday through Friday, I got all my weekends off. Another great advantage is that when you go home for the day, you are done. You donít need to worry about homework or studying for tests.

Disadvantages: You get way more breaks in school. For an 8 hour day at work, you only get an hour break. At school you get at least a ten minute break in between every class. You also get to socialize with way more people at school and donít need to worry about dressing up.

Riding a motorcycle vs. driving a car:

Advantages:  You can park pretty much anywhere. Gas mileage is so much better than almost any car. Motorcycles are fun and exciting. You will never look at sharp corners or on ramps without thinking ďI wish I was on my bike right now,Ē

Disadvantages: DANGEROUS! People cut you off all the time simply because they can not see you. A small fender bender in a car is a trip to the emergency room on a bike. If it rains, you get wet. If its cold outside, it feels about twenty degrees colder on the bike. You also canít eat, drink, talk on the phone or text while driving a bike.

          I got a real taste of fall this weekend. I worked on Saturday. It was actually the first Saturday I worked since last fall, and as crazy as it sounds, I loved it. It was nice and cold on the way to work, but it got really warm during the day. Sunday I went to an apple orchard, watched the patriots and the red sox play on the same day. So I decided I could write about a few of my favorite fall things.

1.       Football Season: I hate Sundays every other season besides fall. Sunday typically consists of doing homework, laundry, chores, and other things to get ready for Monday, all while dealing with a hangover.  But during the fall, you get football every Sunday all day long.

2.       Baseball Post-Season:  This is a great feature of fall to look forward to unless you are a cubs fan. Seeing the red sox win two World Series championships, I wouldnít dare miss a game.

3.       Halloween: When we were kids it meant trick-or-treating. Now that we are older it means costume parties, and maybe going to a haunted house.

4.       Thanksgiving: Do I even need to emphasize this one? Wake up and smell the gravy! Thanksgiving is amazing.

5.       Apple/Pumpkin Picking: A great reason to get outdoors and get some hot apple cider. This also leads to favorites 6 and 7.

6.       Pumpkin Everything: Pumpkin pie, pumpkin seeds, carving pumpkins, pumpkin spice coffee, pumpkin muffins, smashing pumpkins,

7.       Apple Everything: Apple pie, hot apple cider, apple sauce, apple crisp, ďhow you like them apples?Ē

8.       Candy: Weather you go trick-or-treating or completely overstock for Halloween; chances are you have a ridiculous amount of chocolate and sweets.

9.       Foliage: Just like reason 1 & 2, this is another thing that is amazing about New England. ĎLeaf peepersí drive hundreds of miles to see the orange, yellow and red leaves. We, on the other hand, just look out the window on the way to work. Unfortunately they just turn brown and fall off.

10.   Cold Weather: The cool breezy weather is a nice change from the summer heat and humidity. It reminds me of all the things I love about fall. But it also reminds me that winter is coming.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Gordon, Guthrie W in October 2008.

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