Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Discovery of Amazement

It was five in the morning when I was awaken by a unknown noise from outside. I got out of my bed, and saw nothing that was causing the noise. But, the noise was still there.

Seven thirty, I woke up and went to the bathroom to be prepared for the start of another new day.

We had another lab today, and we were supposed to prepare for competent cells, which means to let cells to accept foreign genetic information and combine it into their own genes, and transform the cell with recombinant DNA. But, our schedule was delayed. We waited for almost an hour just for the cells to be ready to use. Within the hour, I talked to a current Brown student who is majoring in neuroscience and pre-med. Since my interest is also in the pre-med field, I asked him about the pre-med study and the eight-year medical program in Brown, which is called the Program in Liberal Medical Educations. His answer for me was that they are both really challenging, but if I am really into the topic, I can learn a lot from it. He also mentioned that biomedical engineering is really challenging.

The cells were finally ready. We put together calcium chloride with the cell, and then centrifuged it. After that, we our off supernatant from the tube, and flamed the mouth of the tube. Last step was to incubate it in ice for twenty minutes. We went through a similar procedure again. Time was up. We did not achieve the original goal, to finish two parts of the lab. We had to finish it tomorrow.

The Text from the First Universities
I went to a session called "Reason and Rationality" after lunch, but I waited for twenty-five minutes with other students and no one showed up. Well, maybe he/she forgot. I walked around the campus although the weather was not pleasant, hot and humid. I also stopped by the John Carter Brown Library to see an exhibition called "Off to College: Higher Education in the Americas, 1551-1825." That was so cool. I was able to see the original copy from the first American universities, which were founded in 1551 in Lima, Mexico, and the history of American universities started from there. I also saw some original old texts regarding the starts of Harvard College, Brown, and also Dartmouth. There were also texts on the first course of philosophy and the first medical school. These old texts all amazed me because they were the foundations of the successful American higher education that stands today.

Continuing with the topic of education, I went to a session called "Research to radio to rugby: navigating extracurricular." Although academic pursuits are important, extracurricular activities are also a big part of college life. Two current Brown students talked about their extracurricular experiences at Brown. At Brown, there are more than 450 extracurricular groups, and these groups consist of sports, music, academic, dance, and community service, etc. They gave us an advice that I was really surprised to hear, and that was "no matter what you want, to participate in wide range of activities have some basic understanding of each one of them or participate in only a few activities but dig deeply into the subject, are both good choices; there are no bad choices in extracurricular activities.  

"Path ti Careers in Medicine"
After dinner, I went to another session called "Path to Careers in Medicine." The speakers were Jennifer Hudshon, assistant director for Brown University health services, Monica Kunkel, nursing coordinator of Brown University health services, and Karen Furie, a neurologist graduated from Brown undergraduate school. I expected them to talk about the job opportunities in the medical field, but, instead, they only answered questions from students, and only concentrated on their own specific field. They all advised us to try out some health-related job or classes to see whether we like the field or not.

My night ended with a walk with Amulia around the campus, and I realized that Brown University in the night was amazing. I enjoyed it.

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