the sometimes senseless ravings (and the occassional rant) of an aspiring marine ecologist who may enjoy killing things a little too much

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Gettin' Things Done

i'm quite proud of myself. i have accomplished much in the last couple of days. met with dr. v. on thursday. it was a pretty productive meeting. my project idea has been finalized, and i'm quite excited about the direction this thing is taking. i won't bore you with the details. i'm excited about it, but if you're not a science nerd like me you probably won't really get the significance. the Big Deal about this project is that it could be NSF-worthy (i.e., i could get $ from the national science foundation to fund it). i think that most graduate students end up getting money from a smaller granting agency (like the alabama center for estuarine studies). if we find what we expect to, then this could really put me on the map as a scientist. like i said, quite exciting (for me). now, let's just hope that my preliminary work (which i'll be doing over the summer) won't totally dissolve all hope of finding something cool with this project. the whole thing hinges on this one idea, which i have some evidence to support but no stats to back it up. i'm also excited because i'll get to torture some parrotfish and maybe some sea urchins this summer. well, maybe not torture exactly, but i'll play with them in the lab and make them eat stuff they probably won't like. sounds like fun, eh?

i also sent out emails to potential committee members outlining my new idea. well, it's really dr. v.'s new idea. but he gave it to me, and i'll be doing most of the work, so i'm claiming it. now, i have to go fill out whatever paperwork is involved in assigning people to my committee. i don't want too many profs on it. that would make comps even more hellish than they inevitably must be. the fewer committee members i have, the fewer questions i have to come up with answers to come comp time (or to really capture the mood of comps, a few days of the deepest circle of hell). but i've got time before i really need to focus on the "joy" of comprehensive exams (that was sarcasm, in case you didn't pick up on that). next week, while dr. v. is out of town w/ his kid (whom he got custody of in his recently finalized divorce), i am supposed to be developing a research plan for the summer, making some predictions about what i should see (if x happens, then i should see y). he gave me some paper citations that i need look up and get to reading. the sooner i do that, the sooner i can get out in the field. *yay* and yes, i am fully aware of the degree of my nerdiness.

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