May. 10th, 2010

Finally.

May. 10th, 2010 02:10 pm
treehat: (Science - Pale Blue Dot)
So I got back from Chicago recently. It was actually quite eye-opening!

First of all, it turns out I have an uncomfortable neurosis about walking around in a big city. No, Mike, just because all the buildings are higher than two stories and go on for more than a couple blocks and the streets are rather crowded does not mean that some hoodlum is going to jump out and stab you in the middle of the day. I'll have to work on that, somehow, along with my neurotic fear of bars.

Anyway.

The important thing I realized is that i finally know what I want to do.* I'm going to go into academia, doing research in astronomy/astrophysics/cosmology. It took me a trip to the Adler Planetarium (especially their semi-public research lab) to remind me how much I love and am fascinated by the cosmos, and finishing my Associate's degree to convince me that yes, I do have the smarts for this. I've had people telling me I'm smart and clever and such for years, but I couldn't believe them, because my migraines have always made me seem slower than the rest of the crowd. (Various teachers misinterpreting headaches for laziness or mental problems or flat-out stupidity certainly didn't help matters.) I'm going to start by taking two courses to complete my MACRAO transfer status** this summer and then going for a Bachelor's degree in Physics or possibly Math w/ Statistics Focus at Eastern Michigan, since I'm still enrolled there (and it's way too late to apply for anywhere else).  Also, Eastern has its own observatory and an Astronomy minor, which isn't a bad start.  (Although ideally, getting a Bachelor's degree from a college that offers an astronomy-related Master's degree would be best.)

I've ranted and complained about conditions at and decisions by my Community College before.  But I really should thank them for giving me real self-confidence for the first time in my goddamn life.

I finally have a solid direction in life, one that excites me and seems attainable.  Honestly?  I'm so happy I could cry.


*I mean, I'm good at CAD, but I don't really enjoy it all that much. And I enjoy all the related design stuff even less.
**MACRAO = "Michigan Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers". Basically, I have to take some extra courses past the basic General Education requirements, but then I automatically pass the Gen Ed requirements at any college in Michigan I transfer to, so I can concentrate on the important stuff. And I only need to take two courses this summer to get it.
treehat: (Ozy & Millie - Nasal Poetry)
Oh hey, I put up my pictures from my Chicago trip over here on Flickr.  Well, the ones that turned out decent, at least.

...Although I think I got a bit carried away with the tags on this one.  But c'mon, SPACE TRILOBITE!

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