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Halloo! When I found out I could go to med school with a Humanities degree with an Ethnomusicology emphasis, I almost peed myself. Here's to me holding it in.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Looking Ahead

It's best to live in the moment, but living peacefully in the moment usually involves at least a little bit of planning for the future. It's a peace of mind thing, yeah? I'm going to update y'all on where I'm going and what I'm doing after this field study (i.e. Fall semester), and in the process I might figure out a little more of what I actually want from the next 8 months or so.


Here's my class schedule. It takes up the largest chunk of my time and thought, which is sometimes wonderful and sometimes tedious. It looks pretty good:

I've got the second semester of O-Chem (though if the O-Chem I'm in right now goes badly enough I might just retake it to make sure I've got the concepts down. If I had known the field studies class would function more like a 5-credit class than a 3-credit class, I would have waited to take O-Chem. 15 credits of classes that actually take the time the credits imply is hard enough, but when two of my 3-credit classes should be 5-credit classes, it feels like I'm taking 19. No sleep tonight... :) C'est la vie!). I'll be doing the post-field writing class and putting together a polished something, just to prove I didn't waste my time in India. Humanities 202 will be cool (I love modern art [so shoot me]), Hindi is always great, and Gamelan is a blast. It seems like not a lot, but there are definitely 15 credits up on that picture.

What else do I want to do with my time? Fifteen credits is too boring by itself.

I need to get a job, for one thing. I would love to work part-time on campus, preferably as a TA (if the field studies program wasn't being kaiboshed I would apply to be a facilitator). Lori is going to be working as full time as possible and taking an online class or two so we can recover from how expensive this whole thing has been and save up for tuition, kids, and maybe even a little nest egg.


I have an idea for a nonprofit organization that does crowd-sourced scholarships. I'm working out the kinks right now, and thinking through what features I want to incorporate, so I'll let you know more when I know more. I also don't want to reveal too much... But y'all will like it. It'll be the new Jumpstarter for college kids.

Blaine, did you know there's a huge picture of your face on the interwebs? Now you do.
My acoustics guru, Dr. A, with family.
The fro is now gone, but the spirit remains.
Above are some of the wonderful people involved in BYU's Acoustics Research Group, and one of the freaking coolest rooms at BYU - the large anechoic chamber. The floor is just a wire mesh, so you feel like you're walking on the moon and like you're in Tron all at the same time.
I love Acoustics Research Group, and they love me back, so I hope I can find enough interesting things to do to stay involved with them. The ASA conference this last fall was too fun for words (but I bet you one of these guys could make an equation that gets pretty close). I would like to give service there too - they gave tours and demonstrations to something like 4000 kids this semester, and even a dummy Humanities major can help with those.


I need to start shadowing doctors, pronto. Med schools like applicants to have something around 200 shadowing hours. I would love to find a reproductive endocrinologist to follow around for the rest of college. I know there are a few in the area - in LDS culture, having kids is kind of important, and it's devastating to couples when the usual method doesn't work. Utah is a great place to work in fertility medicine. I've also always had a desire to work with hospice patients, so maybe I'll find a place that takes volunteers and start getting some meaningful patient contact hours (I hate how clinical that sounds...).


As far as fun extracurriculars that probably won't look that good on a transcript but would be fun anyway (what is the deal with being "serious" all the time? Who wants that?), I would love to get more involved with Leading Edge magazine and Quark, BYU's resident clubs for sci-fi and fantasy geeks. There is also a great folk ensemble performing club that does a lot of interesting things (below is one of the groups in the club, an Irish folk band). I would probably be touring with them this summer if I was going to be in the country.

I'm in a band right now too, and we have a great time playing little shows here and there. Here's our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/This-Years-Fall-Fashion/178862797008. There are a few videos if you're interested.

So, there you go. That's something like 8-9 extracurriculars and 15 credits. The hard part is figuring out where I should allocate my time to find that magic balance between career and educational progression and personal fulfillment. I'm glad I have a wonderful wife who puts up with all her husband's craziness, what you might even call dilettante-ness (I don't really know what I'm doing in any of the things I do). Life is fun as long as you live most of it for others, non? My wife is teaching me that, and I hope the way I prioritize my time in the years and months to come reflects the life of a person who has learned well the lesson of compassion and that good ol' 13th Article of Faith.

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