Wednesday, April 14, 2010

All Over the Place

I'm going to warn you ahead of time: this post is going to be all over the place.  So many things to share!

First, I got confirmation from the National Collegiate Honors Council that my poster has been accepted to the fall conference.  Yay!  This will be my third year in a row attending this conference.  I love traveling to these and this year's is in Kansas City, MO.  The first year I went it was in San Antonio, TX:
 And last year is was in Washington, DC:
I just love having the opportunity to travel, especially when I don't have to pay for much of it.  Besides, I wouldn't be able to afford it any other way so I really try to take advantage of the opportunities that are presented to me.

The negative part of my day was comprised of two different things.  The first was that I TA a general chemistry lab on Wednesdays.  I co-teach with another TA and it's pretty functional.  She's been grading all the lab reports because she's the grad student, but she asked me to do this week's, which was no big deal.  However, once I got down to reading them, I was beyond shocked.  I guess this was a dose of reality.  I just couldn't believe some of the crap the students handed in.  I don't mean to be hard, but some of it was just awful.  I think the thing that bothered me the most was that it seems some of them just don't take pride in their work.  So we had to have a little chat today about what is expected of them when doing a lab report.  I felt bad because they're all good kids, but some of them need to develop the skills to write lab reports for their upper level classes.  I figure it's better they get one bad grade in gen chem than to get more bad grades down the road.  I don't like giving out bad grades, but I know it's what they earned, not what I decided to give them.  But that doesn't make me feel any less like the bad guy.

The icing on the cake today was that I lost my MaineCard on the walk back to my apartment.  Oh yeah, my MaineCard is the key to my apartment and all my roommates are gone right now.  Great.  I retraced my steps and couldn't find it.  I had to get a replacement.  That cost $15.  An awfully expensive piece of plastic indeed.  Then I had to get it reprogrammed to gain access to my apartment.  Once I got in I checked my email to find one waiting that said some girl had found it in the Chemistry building and had it with her.  Too late.  Oh well.  Now I have a nice, new, expensive, shiny piece of plastic.


  1. Congrats. What an honor.

    I hate losing my school card. Ours $10 but still, its expensive for a stupid piece of plastic that has an ugly picture of me. lol.

  2. Ugh, I hate losing IDs- couldn't they be like $5 to replace because I really doubt it costs the school that much to make one more piece of plastic?

    Sorry about the kids lab reports. I think even though you feel like the bad guy now, it will be better for them in the end if they are just not putting the effort in.

    Congrats on the travel opportunity though. No one ever wants to pay for my travel, what is up with that? haha