Thursday, July 10, 2014

A Journey Toward the End

Our Class Gel
I couldn't believe that today was already our last lab day. We finished up our DNA lab, and did DNA microarray analysis, which was a brand new concept for me. There were six different genes, and we put their oligos respective sites on a microarray slide. We then drop one drop of hybridization solution onto each oligo. As soon I dropped the solution, the oligo changed color.  They turned into red, pink, blue, purple, blue, or clear (no change), and these changes signified the different spots where genes were expressed. Some were expressed in only normal lung tissue, some were only expressed in only malignant lung tissue, some were expressed in both, and some were expressed in neither. Jody asked us which color represented the kinds of cells that we have to pay attention at if we are looking for the cause of lung cancer. At first, all students agreed on the genes that were present in malignant tissues, but that was wrong. The right answer was the genes that showed difference between normal and malignant cells because it was the difference that caused diseases. The whole class's reaction was "OHH~~"; it was a epiphany. She continued on the gel electrophoresis photo of our own genes. In both genes, PV-92 and PMCT118, I had heterozygous genes, and that was amazing seeing my own genes. She also introduced a test called 23andme, which allowed people to test their own genes and find out their inherited diseases, traits, ancestry, and many more genetic-related tests. I wanted to do one because I wanted to see where my ancestors came from.

My afternoon was full of shopping. After going to the Brown bookstore with Brandon, we continued our shopping at Whole Food. I understood that the best souvenirs for my family would be staple foods, so I kept all my money just for the big shopping on food. I searched online and asked people who live here, including Jody, what were the foods that were specific to New England. I walked back and forth the store, looked at products on the shelves, talked to the people in the store, and called my mom for many times, I finally decided. I bought eight cans of clam chowder, two bottles of syrup, one bottle of coffee syrup, three packages of cake powder, and a box of oyster cracker. Those were heavy. I carried them all the way to my dorm after walking on the endless Benefit Street and the tiring College Hill. My arms were shaking after carrying all of them, but for my family, I was willing to do that. I hope they all taste good.

Attending a session called "Financing for Ivy League Colleges" and the Annual College Fair was my evening activities. The instructor talked about the financial forms that would be needed, such as FAFSA, and waivers we could get on standardized testing and college applications. The session ended quickly; it lasted only for 20 minutes.

Inside of the College Fair
I was lost again. In order to find Meehan Auditorium, where the fair was held, I looked on the map on my iPod, but I still walked the opposite direction. After turning a big circle, I found my myself back at the same place. I kept walking and walking and did not give up, I finally saw many students who were walking toward the same direction. I thought, " I could just follow them. I think they are also going to the college fair." There were 97 schools presented in the college fair, and many students participated. I walked around, visited several stands, asked several questions, and grabbed many brochures. I learned that University of Chicago also had core curriculum,  just like Columbia University, and Washington University at St. Louis also had a straight medical school, just like Brown University, but the acceptance rate was very low. They only accepted ten students. That was tough. At the end of my tour, my bag was full of brochure, but I did not know if the college fair made me more confused about which college I wanted to go or broaden my view on school options. I really did not know.

Now I am typing the blog, but this is not the final task I have for today. I still have a paper to write, a presentation to prepare, and a final to study. I only have three sentences on my paper. What should I do? I should really start working now.

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