I’ve been back at school for almost 2 weeks now. I’ll just give a snapshot of what I’ve been up to:
Frosh Camp: 3 days, 2 nights at the Marriot at Ventura Beach. We got lucky and it was nice and sunny. Meeting pre-frosh, s’mores, surrey bike rides, beach runs, ultimate football in the sand, dips in the cold ocean, relaxing in the hot hot-tub, and ballroom dance lessons were all included in the package.
This is what Marlyn and I rode along the beach on. So. Much. Fun.
Rotation: 240 prefrosh get to know 8 houses and the people in those houses in 8 days. Rotation is not unlike speed dating in that there are loads of people to meet and very little time to do so.
Paint Party: Fleming’s social team worked hard to make this happen. Challenges included making a dance party with pre-frosh not awkward and most importantly not leaving a massive paint and mud mess in the courtyard and hallways. Basically, the party was two hours of dancing to music while splattering everyone around you with paint and getting showered with water. You can imagine what messy repercussions could ensue, but I am ecstatic to say that we escaped with no charges from housing! Awesome fun + No trouble = Great success.
Bi/Ch 110: Introduction to Biochemistry - what it sounds like.
Bi 202: Neurobiology of Disease - learning the biology behind Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, ALA, schizophrenia, etc.
E/ME 105: Project Design for the Developing World - working with Indian students on a project that will hopefully help people in rural Kerala.
BEM/Ec 118: Environmental Economics - learning how economics can affect environmental factors and vice versa.
I’m actually super excited about a bunch of my classes this term. ACM 95a and Bi/Ch 110 are requirements for my major (bioengineering), but the rest are courses I really wanted to take. This whole first week has been pretty casual because we haven’t had any sets and are still finishing rotation. Next week will be the real test!
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.