I finally got to act like a tourist this weekend! It seems a bit odd, but turns out I spent most of my first two weeks trying to settle in and living like a normal uni student instead of going sightseeing and doing all the touristy stuff. Earlier this week a girl I befriended at the airport in London invited me on a day tour of the highlands, so I thought, sure why not? Our tour guide / driver for the day was hilarious and had a serious case of DSL aka Deep Scottish Love. You could definitely tell he knew what he was talking about, and truly loves this country. The main attraction for the day was visiting the Loch Ness, home to the mythical Loch Ness monster, Nessie. The loch itself was incredibly beautiful. The awesome part was Nessie even rose up and said hi to us while we were admiring the scenery!!
… okay just kidding. We didn’t see Nessie. There are people who 100% believe she’s real though and research the loch year round trying to find her. The highlight of my day wasn’t the loch though, ironically. It was getting to see Highland Cows (or as they pronounce it, heilan coos). They are seriously the cutest cows ever. My friend and I were probably the only two people on the tour group who were extremely excited about this… but we actually got to feed Hamish and Heather, the two cows!! :D
I’m really glad I went on the day tour even on such short notice… it was my first taste of Scotland outside of the busy smoke filled streets of Edinburgh, and I’m definitely starting to understand what my tour guide meant by DSL… (:
Almost a year ago now, I was just about to start my first Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) at JPL. NASA had sent out an email to all of their summer interns containing a social media template to announce that we had been selected as NASA interns. Excited to show my NASA pride, I posted it on my Instagram story, unaware of what would come out of this small action.
Hey hey! We’re starting a series where I walk you through my best finds for food and drinks in the Pasadena region, and in the LA metropolitan area. Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, if you will (although, for copyright reasons we can’t call it that). As you explore your college options, I firmly believe that food and location are more important than your high school guidance counselor may lead you to believe. And I’m here to share my best finds from my time at Caltech with you.
Over the past several months, I have had the opportunity to intern at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) under the mentorship of senior research technologist Dr. Xiaoqing Pi. Dr. Pi’s guidance and mentorship has been instrumental to the development and success of my internship at JPL, where I use machine-learning to enhance the accuracy and integrity of navigation and communication signals. In addition to helping me develop an understanding of atmospheric and ionospheric remote sensing and machine-learning, Dr. Pi has often offered his insights on how to improve my researching skills. Dr. Pi was generous enough to take the time to answer a few questions regarding his research and advice for future student interns. I believe many students can benefit from some of the lessons that he has taught me:
The transition period to remote learning was a very uncertain time, especially for research and the Caltech Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) program. Many hands-on projects had to pivot at the last minute to facilitate off-campus contributions. However, many Techers were able to take advantage of the research opportunities offered at Caltech and JPL to make the best out of remote learning and research. To paint a picture, I’ve interviewed a few talented Techers for some insight on what researching from home looks like for them.