Monday, 1 May 2017

Review: April 2017

Very few big events actually happened this month -- there was a lot of news about future ones, study and work on projects though. This monthly roundup features the end of the European Youth Summit 2017 in Budapest, cramming, an acceptance to participate in the Think20 Summit in Berlin, Harvard, me finally getting a job, lablinn and antibiotic resistance project.

EUROPEAN YOUTH SUMMIT: The last full day of the Youth Summit was the 1st, and Gabi and I flew back the 2nd. It was a cool experience in Budapest -- read about the summit here and about my experience organising an international conference here. After the Summit I took a short break from YP stuff and then meetings resumed, discussing projects dreamt up by participants at the Summit.

THINK20: I was told around the 25th that I’d been selected as one of 100 candidates from over 1300 applicants from 140 countries to attend the Think20: Global Solutions for G20 Summit in Berlin at the end of May and hang with/pitch to Nobel Laureates and people like the former President of the World Trade Organisation. So that should be pretty awesome.

HARVARD: Confirmed my place on an online course with Harvard Business School (HBX Core) this summer through the Naughton Foundation. Woot.

CTYI/A JOB! I got a job! No longer just a professional student (and freelancer but whatever)! I’ll be working at the Center for Academic Talent (CAT) in CTYI for 20 days this summer. It’s enough money that I can stay living in Dublin over summer, and CTYI changed my life so it’ll be cool to work there. Have applied for some other things around that as well so we'll see there.

STUDY: Exam cram period officially started one week into April with exams starting on 2nd May. I spent about 2 weeks studying Organic Chemistry and got only grief for it -- I’m having a significantly nicer time doing Physical Chemistry now for the exam on the 5th, but still looking forward to dropping Chemistry for Biology next year. Speaking of….

SUBJECT CHOICES: I had to submit my subject choices for second year last month and, knowing I could change them over summer, just kept them as double Chemistry, double Physics and double Maths (double meaning 20 credits). After studying Organic Chemistry, though, I’ve realised how much I dislike it. It’s not just that I have difficulty understanding it -- even when I do, it’s not particularly fun. It’s probably not worth studying something I don’t enjoy just because of the stigma of a soft science like biology that’s prevalent around physics classes.

And then there’s the fact that I spend a ton of my extracurricular time doing biology-related things: working on the antibiotic resistance project and researching in medical diagnostics, for example. One of my life goals is to cure diseases and I get so excited learning about the biology of cancer and HIV and antibiotics because of the incredible applications it has, so I should really let my college grades reflect that.

I’ll keep up Physics and Maths and plan to end up with the Physics and Astrophysics degree. I haven’t fully decided yet about biology, but it’s pretty telling that when I realised I could do 20 credits of biology in second year and then do my last two years in Astrophysics that I thought “Wow, I could actually enjoy lectures and my course!” Not just in the usual “I like that I’m learning this because science is important and I want to change the world with it”, but on a day-to-day, these lectures are interesting basis.

And I need to actually study as I go along next year. Yes. That would be helpful.

ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE PROJECT: I have a couple of workshops booked to give after exams and have been working on a site that empowers everyone to take an active role in science, especially focusing on public health (-> antibiotic resistance), open access to research literature and citizen labs. It’s up, but I won’t link to it here until it’s a bit more fleshed out. Watch my Twitter for news! (@frizzyroselle)

LABLINN: Visited TOG, Dublin’s big makerspace, to talk to the founder about how they operate. Learned a bunch for Lablinn, which was cool. Also, I’ve combined a bunch of the things I care about/am working on under the organization and website name Lablinn (antibiotic resistance, the citizen labs and open access).

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