Grad Life

8000 Miles Away – Balancing a million things(Life of a graduate student) #2

The Third Generation of Computers(1965-1980) saw a drastic improvement in computer hardware, both in performance and reliability. Computers of the previous generation had run one program at a time and the central processor mostly spent much of its time idling. But the operating system OS/360 introduced many important features of modern operating systems. The most important of which was probably multiprogramming, often mistakenly called multitasking. This allowed the system to run another program, while the first program was waiting for some I/O to complete.

Looking back at the last month, I felt like a multiprogramming processor. I was constantly trying to utilize every minute of the day, trying to be productive during the walks from class to home, watching pre-class videos during meals, and still maintaining whatever is left of my social life on the weekends.

We are all trying to be Jedi here

In this article, I wanted to talk about the things that made my grad experience a little more memorable.

  • The Fall Colors
    Witnessing the New Hampshire fall was such an ecstatic experience for me. Watching the leaves change their color from green to red, yellow, orange with each passing day on my way to class made me feel a sense of comfort and calm. I don’t know if it was the aesthetics of the scenery or the poetic meaning associated with the circle of life that had that effect on me but it certainly helped me get a sense of myself on good and bad days. So, my suggestion to you would be, take a walk in a park once in a while, look at the trees around you, go for a hike sometime to relieve the accumulated stress and exhaustion which is an inevitable part of the grad school experience.
  • So Many Firsts
    This month was filled with so many firsts – from apple picking to baking apple pies, from Homecoming to Dartmouth Diwali. It was an exhausting and amazing month – the full workload of a Master’s program was experienced but also stronger bonds were made. I will leave it to the pictures for this one.
  • Teamwork
    For anyone considering the Engineering Management course at Dartmouth, a lot of your classes involve you working in groups. One of the most interesting courses for me this term is Technology Assessment. You are put in a multi-cultural team and made to work with a client for the entire term. You are basically expected to propose a technology-based solution for the client as a student consultant. As you start navigating the problem statement, developing team dynamics, and having client meetings, slowly you understand how important teamwork is in real-world scenarios.
  • Beliving in Yourself
    Graduate school expects you to work, work hard. While constantly networking and looking for jobs, you are supposed to manage your academics, social life, part-time job, sleep, and anything else that you take upon yourself. Most of the time, I love every bit of it but there also are days I wish it was a little easier. If someone tells you Graduate School is hard, believe them. It is. There is a funny saying that goes like, “Finding a job is a job in itself” and now going through the process, I can tell you that it’s 100% true. But just remember that there’s only you who can do this. Start enjoying the process, see it as a learning experience, and keep reminding yourself of the reason you chose to come to grad school and this will be the most memorable time of your life. Music, dance, meditation, sports-take a moment to do whatever helps you unwind and then get back to the learning.

That’s about it for this month. A few more memories from this month before you go.

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