Searching for a New Life

I have been surprised and incredibly grateful for the outpouring of support I have received from friends and colleagues since announcing my departure from our PhD program. Many students have gone out of their way to let me know that they support me and think this was a brave move. To be honest, I never... Continue Reading →

Moving Forward

I've spent much of the past month thinking about this decision and much of the past week thinking about how to tell people. I am leaving my PhD program. I started this program with the intention of following a career path that would significantly benefit from, if not require, the pursuit of such a degree.... Continue Reading →

The Impenetrable Nature of a Thick Skin

Multiple times during my scientific and professional development, I've been told about the necessity of a "thick skin". The intent of which is to not let negative feedback or constructive criticism upset you. The expectation is that you will not let things effect you emotionally, but you will fix the problems outlined or follow the... Continue Reading →

Hurry Up And Wait

I first heard the phrase "hurry up and wait" to describe the nature of life for actors on a film set. I was an extra on the set of "Olympus Has Fallen" for one day back in 2012, filming in rural Louisiana. As extras, all of our attention and energy was needed while filming sequences,... Continue Reading →

Am I Ready?

My anxiety levels are extremely high. Last month, I wrote about everything I have to do this summer and now, I'm in the thick of it. I finished up my experiments last Thursday and we finished packing the lab the following day. That's not to say that my experiments gave me all of the data... Continue Reading →

The Cost of Calm

"Whoever said money can't solve your problems, Must not have had enough money to solve 'em" -Ariana Grande, "7 Rings" With mental health struggles so prevalent for graduate students, graduate programs and support networks are putting extra emphasis on mental health awareness. My graduate program offers workshops and counseling to its students, providing training and... Continue Reading →

Planning to be Overwhelmed

For most students, across all levels of education, the summer represents a time for relaxation and recovery away from school and class responsibilities. Particularly responsible students may hold a summer job to earn some money and occupy their time. Graduate students don't get that luxury. We work year-round, whether in class, in the lab/doing research,... Continue Reading →

Self-Awareness in Depression

I have chronic anxiety and periodic depression. My anxiety is rooted in my schoolwork, research, and other aspects of my professional life. My depression is brought on by pain in my person life. Over the past few weeks, I have been struggling through a breakup from someone I really cared about. The reasons for the... Continue Reading →

Research is a Recipe

I don't think of my research as being daunting. Interesting, challenging, and frustrating, but not daunting. However, conversations with people outside of research makes it seem like that is how everyone else perceives our work. I think that perception is part of the reason so few people try out research programs in school or enter... Continue Reading →

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