Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A Slice of the Student Life

Rather than a rundown of my routine or my lab procedures on DNA precipitation and denaturation and micro pipetting practice, let's review the highlights of day two at Brown.

Dressed appropriately on the first day of lab and afraid I'd get lost in the labyrinthian bottom floor of the Life Sciences Building, I arrived early and in time to help Jody label flasks of calf thymus DNA. My experience working in the community college chemistry labs came in handy in interpreting the procedures. It took some adjustments to recall micro pipetting specifics that I'd picked up from AP Biology two years ago, but that's part of what I like about our class thus far.

I really enjoy the independence we have in our labs. Not quite trial-and-error, this instead gives us a chance to figure things out on our own, and develop our interpretations of the proper procedure and conclusions. The indirect effect is we learn to cooperate with the students around us in surrounding lab tables. As long as we keep in mind the easy-to-remember guidelines and detailed directions, we're free to make our own observations and exercise critical thinking.

After going over the reading assignments for class, I met up with Tayler, Emily, David, and Ying-An to head downtown for some exploring. Conveniently, RIPTA, the regional public transit system, is fare-free with our Brown IDs. We unboarded just across the tunnel traversing College Hill, opening into the transit center, and took in Kennedy Plaza. Luckily we didn't stand there like gaping tourists for too long. A freshly-graduated Brown student from Singapore directed us to the mall. Providence Place power-shopping was a great way to work off the delicious frozen yogurt we picked up at Froyo World, one of Thayer Street's three froyo shops. With everything so easily accessible, next time, I'd love to take on Federal Hill to follow up on some great Italian food recommendations.

Student life at Brown is amazing even during summer session. I could just live at the gym, even the smaller free facility on Grad Center E. While runs regularly help me clear my mind, they always make me as ravenous as I was tonight. The mantra has been healthy mind and body, but I think the real secret to surviving college cafeteria food is working up an appetite.

To close our the night, our awesome RAs set up a projector in the Solomon Hall auditorium for the NBA Finals game. What a lively experience watching, whooping, and bonding as sports spectators! I met a few college basketball experts to debate with and some new gym buddies.

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