academics

What a (4-Day) Weekend!

Well, readers, I hope you all gave thanks this past Thursday! We’re all here another year to stuff ourselves with turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, CRANBERRY SAUCE, and PUMPKIN PIE (I wonder what my favorite things are in that list…). But most importantly, Thanksgiving is about FAMILY. Unfortunately, I was unable to go home for the holiday (but, you say, I was just there! and in that respect you are correct).But there was no need to worry, since many Techers stay on campus for the weekend. Each House usually puts on a Thanksgiving feast for everyone who’s around! Definitely a great way to catch up with your House “family.” However, this post will not be about Thanksgiving, since that would be too cliché. It will be about the THREE DAYS AFTERWARDS! Now what would be blog-worthy about the days after the Day of Thanks? First and foremost…BLACK FRIDAY! Yes, I was among the masses trying to jump-start the economy on that all-important shopping day. I didn’t get up at 5 AM to hit the stores, but went out for a leisurely afternoon with my good friend, Lisa. I rented a Zipcar for the afternoon (look it up - they just started a rental program at Caltech and it’s only $8 an hour!) and we headed to the nearby Santa Anita Mall. Let’s just say…I found some really amazing deals. From $13 TV show seasons on DVD to half-price sweaters at Abercrombie, I definitely got to shop till I dropped!

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research

Paper to Prototype

Hey Everyone! I am currently in San Diego for the Thanksgiving weekend—and feeling good! It’s so great to be home for a few days to see my family, relax and sleep in my own bed before going back to conquer the last week of classes and finals.

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culture

Back in the Homeland

**Sorry for the delay - busy since coming back from my last interview! So I’ll give an update on what I’ve been doing since then!Last week I was at UMDNJ - Robert Wood Johnson. If you’re from NJ, you know what I’m talking about. Otherwise, it’s a medical school in my home state! It was nice to take the plane into Newark Airport and be picked up by my parents. It ALSO was nice to catch up on my sleep in my own bed for the night! There’s something about the sheets you have at home that you can never replicate in a dorm. And then you can wake up whenever you want the next day, which always helps! I got to have a lazy morning, and then headed up to New Brunswick to the hotel - the Hyatt Regency! What nice accommodations!

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culture

Gettin' my steel-toes dirty in Midland

I just woke up….after sleeping for about 18 hours. I think it’s called exhaustion…

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culture

Toughest Job on Campus

…but someone’s gotta do it!If you haven’t had a chance to check out The Tech (Caltech’s student newspaper), I would go here and read up on some Caltech current events! But in addition to that, I would read the column that Dannah and I write. What do we seniors have to write about? Being old? Being off of Core? Retrospectives on our time at Tech? How about none of the above! Dannah and I, you see, are the Official Food Reviewers of Caltech! How did we get this prestigious title? Well…like many things at Tech, we just asked! Frosh year, we e-mailed the editor of the paper and asked if we could start a new food column, and she graciously allowed us to start eating out on the newspaper’s dime! Well, it’s not all fun and games (though mostly it is), we do have to branch out to new restaurants that no one has ever set foot in before. It’s exciting, though, because we can offer suggestions to our fellow students where they should go in Pasadena. There’s so much to eat here that our four years cannot exhaust the options! From taco trucks to expensive sit-down restaurants, what a variety we have! If you keep holed up in your room each weekend (when we do not have food on campus) and order pizza, well…I don’t think I could have respect for you, honestly. Within 30 minutes of walking, you can go around the world, from American to Afghanistan, and it’s a delicious tour! So this week, we took our expert palates to Tea Spots, a new Boba (Bubble Tea) and snack restaurant not too far from campus. We take our job very seriously, and usually don’t bring anyone along to see us work our magic. However, today you can get a look at us in action! Enjoy!

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research

Presentations

At the end of my SURF, we’d made quite a bit of progress. We had a working prototype which we coulddemonstrate! My mentor arranged for us to present at the Smart Grid Symposium, which was sponsored by Southern California Edison. They were interested in our work because they would like to be able to protect the electric grid in the event of an earthquake.

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research

Good Morning, Baltimore!

Sooooooo, I’m done with interview número cinco!I have returned from my cross-country trek to what many call one of the meccas of medicine: Johns Hopkins University! It was my first trip to Baltimore since I was a baby, but I was very excited to see both the school and the city! It was a bit of a shock at first, though, because I left my sunny California morning to arrive in Baltimore on a rainy night. Fortunately, no one was delayed, so all of the interviewees got to meet up in time for a late dinner at an Irish Pub! They had half-price entrees, and I enjoyed my bacon cheeseburger after sitting on the plane for so many hours! After dinner, I got to chat with my host, Scott, and his roommates! They all live in a HOUSE! Like…a real HOUSE! That’s so cool, and reminds me about how I’m growing up after graduating college, and I wonder if I’m ready…but it’s totally exciting! So I slept on the couch, which was not as bad as you may expect, actually more comfortable than many beds I’ve been on, and then woke up at the crack of dawn (6:45 AM) to get ready for the interviews. Coming from high school, you may be thinking “6:45 AM, not too bad”…but now I feel that anything before 9 AM is crazy-early since my schedule has shifted at Caltech. Fortunately, I am a morning person, which has helped me get through the early wake-up calls.

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clubs

Roadie for Third Eye Blind

Yup–you read right…I was a roadie for a day for THIRD EYE BLIND this past Saturday!! They came to play a concert for our campus November 14th!! Woke up early on Saturday to volunteer some man power to help set-up the stage and unload the equipment trucks. Was super psyched to see that the band’s tour bus was parked right outside, across the street from my dorm room!!

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research

Field Trippin' and Faking it

So sorry for not posting in a while—I literally have been dealing with a packed schedule of homework sets, study groups, field trips, classes and crossing off my lengthy to-do list…This week especially, I have been off campus almost as much as I was on campus..hooray for field trips!

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research

What Day Is It??

Hello, there! Another busy past few days - just got in from Duke at midnight last night and it was a packed visit (well…when are these visits NOT packed?). So busy, in fact, that I’m not really even sure what day of the week it is these days, just sort of go to whatever classes my calendar tells me to go to…

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academics

Making Progress...

Hooray for being done with midterms week! I took my CDS 110 midterm last night in the library…wasn’t too bad.I actually think that midterm was the last I will ever take IN MY LIFE….since 2nd and 3rd term all I am really taking is my thesis and 2 other classes that don’t have written midterm exams. I guess, that doesn’t include the finals I will have to take in 5 weeks at the end of this term..but come on, it’s awesome to think that I will NEVER have to take a midterm EVER again! :D

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clubs

Wrapping things Up

Hey all, As I wrote about last time, my race last Saturday was the final one for the season. With that, I will be wrapping up my blog with this post. I think I’m supposed to do some kind of reminiscence or whatnot, but I’d like to keep that short, because I did manage to get those pictures taken! (Well actually, a super-cool ChemE friend of mine took them because he’s that awesome.) Looking back on this season, I’m mildly amused. Due to conflicts and other circumstances, I only ran three of the six scheduled races this year. {Last year, I ran every one.} However, this 50% participation rate is not too bad. I joined the team for the experience of being with a group of smart people who like running, not to do races. Sure, racing is good - and I’m pretty competitive when I want to be!- but I’d rather enjoy being with my teammates than be caught up in the race. When I started off, I had pretty normal hopes for how things would go. However, my workload soon caught up with me, and I struggled some to find a balance. Thankfully, things got better when I started running on my own 3 days a week. So this season was a learning experience, I suppose. I like having those, even though they aren’t pleasant when they occur. Therefore, I’m pretty content with the way things went.

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academics

Smells like midterms week

The time has come—midterms week is here! But being a senior, I only have one midterm test to take and a midterm presentation to put together for E/ME 105….thank goodness. Sorry frosh and s’mores…but we’ve all been there–having 3 to 5 tests to take. I feel your pain! This week has been pretty busy for me with my thesis objective outline due, having two on-campus interviews and a meeting with the freshman admissions committee. I have been running around campus, and being in a different place every hour. But everyone who knows me well, knows that I like to keep myself busy.

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culture

Ghouls and Goblins? Well... Not Exactly

Happy (Belated) Halloween!! So it’s Fall term midterms week at Caltech, and what does that mean? That it’s Halloween, of course! What better way to take a break from the grind of classes and exams than to dress up in crazy outfits and have fun with your friends?! Well…there isn’t one so that’s what I did. My Halloween has been pretty busy with a few different things going on, so let’s get started! Well…in my opinion an amazing way to spend All Hallow’s Eve Eve is with your best friend watching movies and eating snacks, so that’s what I did. Dannah and I (read: I) made some pumpkin pancakes to enjoy before having a movie marathon in the Braun “off-campus” house lounge. The movies we selected were “The Break Up” and “Election.” Both were pretty different but entertaining (and NOT scary - I hate scary movies). And of course our snacks were delicious!

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local

Just Down the Coast!


OK so I have completed my third interview in one week! It’s crazy to think last Monday I was in Chicago and I just got back from San Diego! Since I don’t have a car, I got there using the train. Amtrak was actually pretty convenient and got me from Union Station in Downtown LA to Solana Beach in Northern San Diego in about 2 hours. And what a beautiful train ride it was!

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research

A Hard Day's Night

This term, my weekends are almost as busy and hectic as my weekdays. Despite the fact that I have 2 homework sets due on Mondays, I also have group meetings, dance classes and of course, can’t forget the fun stuff!–it’s the weekend after all.

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research

Where's the Gateway Arch?!

So I have recently returned from my second Midwest trip this week - this time to the Gateway to the West: St. Louis, MO. I have never been to the city before, so I was excited to check it out! The school I was interviewing for was Washington University in St. Louis (WashU for short). It’s definitely been difficult to talk with my friends and family about it and tell them that this is NOT the school in Seattle (that’s the University of Washington).

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research

There were post-its everywhere...

Hello!! Just got out of E/ME 105 which meets every Tuesday and Thursday from 2:30-4pm. Today we had some groups (including mine) present on their project goals and term objectives. The project I am working on with my team for the term is redesigning a honey centrifuge for some beekeepers in Guatemala so that they can produce more amounts of honey and better quality honey. In addition to improving the prototype, we will also focus on creating a business plan/model that will help them sell their product to an expanded market.

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culture

THE YANKEES WIN!!!

As the game progressed and the Yanks dominated, I also had to indulge in a Angels Stadium Hot Dog. In my official Caltech Food Critic opinion, nothing beats the Nathan’s Hot Dogs in Yankees Stadium…but then again, those are almost $10 and this was $4.50. So at least it was worth the money!

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local

Caltech in...Chi-Town?

PHEW!! Let me just start off by saying how EXHAUSTED I am! I just got back from a whirlwind 24-hour visit to Chicago! It was my first time outside of the airport in Illinois, so I was excited to see what it was like! Fortunately, in case you were worried about my packing skills, I did succeed in getting everything into my carry-on! My trek began, as many do, on the corner of San Pasqual and Holliston, where the Super Shuttle picks us up to go to the airport. Many Techers use this pretty convenient method to get to LAX or BUR.

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research

Career Fair and Interviews

This week has been so busy! We had the career fair on Wednesday—which meant a lot of prepping and revising my resume in anticipation of the event. There were about 60 companies in attendance, each with enthusiastic recruiters and booths stocked with pamphlets on career opportunities and free schwag (is that how you spell it?. Since I am a senior, I took this career fair very seriously and made sure to establish good contacts and drop my resume off to any company that could be potential employers. In the past years, I have been so lucky to have met companies at the career fair, interview with them, and getting hired for full-time paid summer internships (Boeing and Schlumberger). But this time–instead of inquiring about internships, I asked about full-time positions.

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culture

It all began this past summer...

Hey there! Welcome to my new blog, a continuation of my old blog: Adventures in Internships.

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research

Planning, Packing, Organizing

So I’m heading off to my first interview on Sunday - a bit nervous but also exciting! However, before then I have so much to do! Being a senior isn’t as easy as many would have you believe… First off, there’s my class schedule!

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research

Follow my new blog!

Hey Everyone! Thank you so much for reading this blog about my summer internship and travel! I hope you enjoyed it! Follow me on my new blog…“Class in Session: E/ME 105” where I will be blogging about the engineering course I am taking this term. The course is a continuation of the research project I began when I traveled to Guatemala this past summer. In addition, you can read about how I adjust to my busy senior year and get an inside look at what my life looks like when I’m at Caltech as opposed to a working in a different part of the country, or traveling to another part of the world!

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local

Moving into Braun

Hey everyone! Sorry it took such a long time for me to post–I have been super busy moving into my new room and beginning my senior year at Caltech! My month at home in San Diego was the best! I spent a lot of time with my family, celebrated my birthday, and got to relax after such a hectic summer. I even got to help out for Caltech undergrad recruiting by visiting some high schools in San Diego—including my high school, Westview High. All in all, I really enjoyed myself.

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global

The End of Days in Japan

Asuke

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research

Exploring Antigua

It was back to Antigua for us for the rest of our trip. We spent the days driving to the work sites to work on our projects, and the nights going out in Antigua.

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global

Last Days in Japan

Origami

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research

SURF Paper

I’ve mostly finished my SURF. By this, I mean that I’m no longer being paid. The thing about research projects, I’ve discovered, is that they never really end. You can always do more experiments, or refine your data, or go in a new and different direction. It’s one of the jobs of the professor in charge to call a stop to the work once there’s enough to publish.

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global

Last Weekend

Nishiura

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research

Rocking Out

The adapters that I spent so long getting were immediately put to good use. One of my friends had just bought a copy of Rock Band 2 (marked down because of the new Beatles Rock Band), somebody else had a XBox 360 we could use, we borrowed some controllers, and the house had speakers and a projector. It’s a bit like stone soup, if you remember that fairy tale, but we made it work.

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culture

Ixichme ruins

We left our campsite at Lake Atitlan by boat back to Panajachel. We were smarter this time and took three boats instead of only two. We did some shopping around the tourist market in Pana before packing ourselves into cars to see Mayan ruins.

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research

Mes derniers deux jours pres de Paris

Despite having work, my last two days in Paris were awesome.

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global

Getting Cables or A Tour of Pasadena

The other day, I wanted some cables. What I needed were two 1/4” Stereo Male to RCA Female adapters, so I could hook up an X-box to the house speaker system.

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global

Around Aichi

Tokoname

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research

The Rain Really Makes My Day (Journey to Osaka)

Osaka Osaka is the “Anti-Tokyo”, as one would put it. That would make it the Anti-Anti-Okazaki, huh. Anyways, Osaka is the second largest city in Japan, and is famous for its laid back attitude despite the large-city feel. There’s also a ton of things to do there.

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research

Visiting the Sister

While I was home, my parents and I took a trip up to visit my sister at college. She’s a freshman at Carnegie Mellon and she had just finished her second week of classes.

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research

The Last Parisian Hurrah...

So picking up where i left off! That Sunday was a wacky day… I, yet again, was out until sunrise _ Regardless, I still managed to arrange a picnic with some friends (thank god for cell phones); they were Kerry and Katie, the MITers, and we had a delicious little lunch at Luxembourg Gardens.

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research

Projects in Pasajquim

While we were camping by Lake Atitlan, we also took some time to visit Pasajquim. Pasajquim was the small village that hosted Caltech & Landivar students last year. Paired with the Caltech Y, the E/ME 105 class last year stayed with the families in Pasajquim and provided work and service to the small community. So we went back to visit the people and look at the improved stove that was built, and also test some projects for this year.

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global

Nagano

Gifu and Nagoya

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global

Gifu and Nagoya (Short Post)

Disclaimer

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research

Europe, je t'aime, mais il faut dire au revoir.

I am writing this as I sit in my room at Ecole Polytechnique intermittently packing my things. My plane will take off toward the fire engulfed city of LA in about 7 hours. I miss my friends. I miss my family. And I miss Paris and the people I got to know here, my new friends, and heck I haven’t even left yet. I’ll recap a bit of my final Parisian hurrah…

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Spotlight


culture

Caltech Food Tour

Caltech may be a small campus, but it has a large variety of food options. There are three main dining locations on campus — The Lee F. Browne Dining Hall, the Hameetman Center (which houses our beloved Red Door Cafe), and the Broad Café.

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academics

Some Late-Night Stress-Saving Food Runs

Midterms kept up its unrelenting attack on my sanity this week – at least a little bit. And how did I solve this? Two words.

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culture

Caltech Art Gala

Every year, Caltech’s literary and arts magazine Totem hosts the Art of Science competition.

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global local culture

Quick Trip to the Beach

Although there are a lot of smaller things, such as midterm smoothies and milkshakes (Blacker does something similar to this) and some larger things like Faculty Dessert Night, the soc team usually agrees that beach trip is the most work.

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