Oct 29, 2014

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Updates!

This update is a long time coming. I’ve been busy, between school, two part time jobs, and trying to keep my sanity; but I’ve been really wanting to let you know how everything is going.

Academics

This summer I took Pre-calculus and C++ and achieved B’s in both. I was sad to lose my 4.0 grade average, but knew that it had to come eventually.

The precalc was challenging, but I’m proud of how well I did for a compressed summer course and in comparison to the class average. I did very well with the C++ course, and would have gotten an A in the class, but due horrendous traffic, I was over an hour late to my final exam (which was weighted with the midterm to be worth over half the course grade).

I had a very brief break, and then started in on the fall semester.

I’m currently taking Calculus, Chemistry, Engineering Drafting/Design, and Advanced AutoCAD.

Calculus, is a bit of a mixed bag. I do great on the homework and understand and participate in class, but the tests are long, difficult and don’t allow calculators. The teacher is young, and new to teaching though. His only teaching gig before SRJC was a privet catholic women’s college in Montana. I think that he’s starting to realize that he may need to expect a little less from his junior college students. Although I did poorly (for me) on the last test, I actually did a little better than some other students who are the smarties in the class.

I’m really enjoying Chemisty, but it’s like learning a whole new language. I’m also doing fairly well and get “good job!” written on my tests.

Engineering is also going pretty good. I just got my midterm back and scored a 42 our of 40. Its taught by an adjunct teacher who works at Medtronics so he has a lot of good industry knowledge.

I’m also excelling in my Advanced AutoCAD course. Though this wasn’t required for my major or transfer, I elected to take it because I did so well in the previous AutoCAD course and there are good opportunities for drafting work. I’m hoping to maybe get a part time work from home job once the class is over. I think I can get a good recommendation from my teacher as well considering he stopped by my desk last week and said “You’re pretty good at this, aren’t you?”.

This semester I joined the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement program which has a lot of great opportunities from things like campus visits to information on internships.

I even just submitted my registration for an Undergraduate Women in Physics conference for this winter. I’m also hoping to be selected for a summer research internship at UC Berkeley. I have to write some essays and get recommendations from teachers to apply by the end of the year.

All in all I’m still in love with being a student and am so passionate about where I’m heading.

Financial

I managed to score a couple of scholarships that for the Fall semester paid out about $600. I also got my fall distribution of my Stafford student loans, though is a little less than last year because of the total limit of what I can take out.

We knew it would have to be like that, gradually less and less for each year I plan to borrow, hoping that scholarships I would receive would make up the difference, but I’m also driving back and forth to school 4 days a week  now, about 1600 miles a month.

I’ve started looking for some kind of rental closer to school, but so far nothing has been a financially sound option to give up my current situation.

I also haven’t yet received any of my grant (free) money yet because I had to submit a special conditions form, that I didn’t get noticed needed additional paperwork until last week. When I submitted said paperwork on Monday I found out that it would be another 4 to 6 weeks for processing. This takes me through the end of the semester basically with about half the money I had last year.

I’m hopeful that I can keep things floating until my grant money comes through, or I receive aid for the spring semester.

I’m looking forward to applying for the next round of scholarships, I should be eligible for quite a few.

 

<3 <3 <3

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