Posted by: unlikelygrad | January 25, 2010

Was I ever like that?

I just spent half an hour with one of the professors for whom I TA. The goal of the meeting was to teach me how to upload grades into the Blackboard system, but we spent probably half of the time chatting.

As I have mentioned before, I value my interactions with the faculty here. Of course I see them as potential advisors, or as people to learn chemistry from, but I also see them as really neat people. I haven’t met the entire department “up close and personal” yet, but I really love all the people I’ve been able to interact with so far.

Looking back at my younger self, I see that this is nothing new. I spent half of my 4th grade recesses grading papers for my former 2nd grade teacher. Throughout my school years, I loved hearing stories about my teachers’ lives outside the classroom–the stories that helped me see them as real people. I guess I liked learning about them because I always liked my teachers more than my peers.

But then I was an odd duck, a girl who seemed to have been born about 20 years old (though in a younger body). As a college freshman (age 16), I was in the glee club with people of all ages. One, a faculty member, asked me, “You’re a grad student, aren’t you?”

And now, I know I am different from the other grad students. But how much of that difference comes from being older than they are, and how much of that is because I am just…different? I look at some of the grad students around me–the ones obsessed with their social life, with getting drunk, with finding a hot date–and I wonder, “Was I ever like that?” Honestly? I don’t think I ever was.



  1. Besides liking very young things like comics and cartoons, I really wish I was in my thirties. I like to relate to older people, do little to no partying, and hold more intellectual discussions with coffee while we talk about our kids/hobbies/news of the day/political opinions on such and such. I was also the kid who wanted to help my teachers out, and even today (except for being terrible with people skills) I rather talk to my teachers than my classmates. Overall, My peers and I haven’t reached that age where a get together doesn’t include dancing and loud music in the end. I’m almost there, a few more years. but for now, i guess i’ll deal.

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