>> Tuesday, August 28, 2007
First- grad school is awesome!
Old Town waterfront
We had orientation yesterday. It was an all day event- from 8:00 until 11:00 if you count the breakfast and happy hour. Basically there are about 21 people in my program, all around my age with similar backgrounds.
Everyone is very nice and environmentally conscious. Example- we are having a bagel breakfast tomorrow and they want us to bring our own mugs to cut down on waste. It's a good way to stay accountable anyway. Pretty much everyone is from the Northeast with the exception of a couple from the West, maybe 5 or so from VA and 3 of us from the Carolinas (including me). The second year students have a larger class- about 25. They are a fun group and quick to get us out and socialized. It's a busy program so it is understood that we are all going to stick through this thing to the end (while spending every free minute together).
There are I think 7 people who are coming from DC and of them many worked in politics. 2 others who worked on the Hill. I am definitely the only person to work for a Republican but I think everyone generally appreciates the experience and doesn't care. We are all around 24 or 25 years old. I'm starting to feel really good about having my 2 years of work experience behind me!
I absolutely love the faculty. They are extremely easy to talk to and willing to spend time with us. The courses offered seem really interesting. I'm taking a second year class this semester so that I can do a study abroad next Fall. I think it's kind of crazy to have to plan for all of that now but definitely right up my alley! I love planning ahead. Probably too much. We're all fighting to get into this international development course that is already full. A guest lecturer is teaching it so it won't be offered again. Still, we are able to petition to the faculty to try to get it back on the schedule for the following semester. It's nice to be a part of a program that is so flexible and accomodating to the students.
I've also realized how small Charlottesville really is. Considering I've met about 40 people in the last 2 days I can't seem to go anywhere without running into one of them. I like that. Makes me kind of feel like I'm back in Clemson.
My schedule is going to be packed- Class Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 9-4 with a 2 hour break inbetween (which I will probably be using to do my work study). I babysit every Tuesday from 8-5. I'm skipping one of my Friday classes since it overlaps with the class I need to take to do my study abroad. My prof simply doesn't care and said I should be able to catch up online. I love grad school! Thursdays I have free but will probably be doing random assignments for my work study to fulfill my hours and actual school work (gasp). On the weekends I'll be catching up but definitely getting plenty hours of play in. I forgot what it's like to have a full time job plus some. It will be a little more flexible than an office job but not much considering all of my classes are in the same building- where I will be spending my time in class pretty much from 9-5. Then I have the actual assignments to do when I leave. Still, I am pretty excited about working hard at something I'm interested in.. with people I am going to be REALLY close to by the end of this semester.
I'm glad that I'm writing this post bc I know really soon I will be griping about all of the work. I need something to look back on to remind me of why I am wanting to do this.
Hopefully I'll have more fun and interesting things to say about my program soon. For right now these are the logistics. I haven't even touched on how much I love planning and how excited I am about what I'll be learning. I'm sure the topics will be unavoidable in the future.
On a lighter note, pictures to look at!
Waterfront, Blue Ridge Parkway
Flowers from my old neighborhood in Old Town