The Caltech Nuances

The Caltech Nuances

Question from a prefrosh: **What do you do for fun? How can Caltech be such a happy place? **Boring answer: I engage myself in various activities around campus, from music groups to house events. I also make sure I sleep well and Not boring answer: As an admissions blogger, I have gotten myself into appreciating subtle nuances from everyday life or from my past. Every single one of the quotations of the day (yes, I am generally grammatically incorrect) is from listening to everything around me and appreciating the humor. Also, I take pictures to capture whatever is going on around me (as you can see from my blogs), and I really appreciate the 500 photos I take per term.

First, I accredit my appreciation of Caltech around me to my friends (both Averites and non-Averites). They make situations easier to overcome, from collaboration on homework to the laughs we share. They even tell me to take pictures for the blogs and offer corny quotations to consider (though some are not appropriate for the internet).

Second, I thank my house-mates for giving me a support group and quasi-family at Caltech. When I fell sick at the end of last quarter, my neighbor Grace kept me company in my room when my roommate was not there. I am thankful for their presence every time I see them in the halls or around campus. I can’t say that my support group/quasi-family is higher or lower than my friends (though there is a lot of overlap between the groups); they are just on another dimension.

Third, I appreciate the professors having a sense of humor when they teach and trying to connect to the students with their material.

There are some notable saying from classes and strange occurrences. During PS12 today, Dean Kiewiet said, “You know what the best thing about being the US president? To become the ex-president of the United States.” Also, I found it fascinating that an advisor on one of my high school science fair projects was actually my Bi1 professor’s first postdoctoral scholar, as my professor and I were discussing during an ombudsmen meeting at the Athenaeum about bacteria using different heavy metals in respiration.

Finally, I appreciate the cultures/nuances of other houses. I can’t give specifics because it would be a Rotation Violation, but pictures can be interpreted in multiple ways.

I notice that it’s the nuances that make a school a great place to be. If someone is cranky about a school they attend, they probably haven’t stopped to smell the roses and appreciate the little things that make the school really awesome. Reflecting back on 5/6 of my freshman year, I remember my fearful self when my parents abandoned me to go to the parent orientation. It started with a simple Fibonacci amoeba game, and it blossomed from there.

**Quote of the day: **From one of our physics professors, Sunil Golwala. “Now to answer an everyday question: What size of magnet do you need for the LHC (Large Hadron Collider)? It’s not just something you do in your garage.”