#PhDlife: It doesn’t always involve diving

Hey everyone,

Happy 2018 and thanks for stopping by! I hope you had a wonderful holiday! I was lucky enough to go home for the holidays and spend quality time with my family and some great friends (some of whom I haven’t seen for several years)! I spent my holiday baking (focaccia, cookies, sourdough bread), playing the violin, laughing, singing, and building legos with my young niece and nephew. My time at home was relaxing – exactly what I needed in order to replenish my energy for a season of lab work on the Cape.

This leads me to my next topic . . . I am not always in the field! I spend most of my time completing lab work, analyzing data, and writing about it (in the form of publishable units/ scientific manuscripts)!

Over the next couple months (I have given myself March 2018 as a loose deadline), I need to conduct DNA extractions on samples that I collected last summer from the U.S. Virgin Islands (see my recent instagram time-lapse video!), prepare sequencing libraries for these samples, and I also need to finish processing (eluting, drying down, and re-suspending) SPE cartridges that I collected this past November in Cuba and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Additionally, over the next couple months (the spring semester), I need to:

  • edit and submit a manuscript
  • resume writing another manuscript
  • debug r-code and train myself how to use an r-script to analyze a new type of data (anyone know how to coerce a data.matrix or a list into a special r- object class?)
  •  prepare for another week of field work (taking inventory of the supplies we have, washing many bottles, booking flights and arranging travel)
  • schedule a dissertation committee meeting
  • hold a dissertation committee meeting
  • prepare a presentation for my department seminar (!!!)
  • take two classes

There are quite a few items on my massive PhD to-do list (which is not comprehensive and will change as time passes by) and they are representative of the responsibilities, tasks, and duties that I have upheld and completed over the course of my PhD experience.

And I want you to know that I still will have fun. I’ll be singing and dancing to music in the lab, I’ll be spending time with some great friends, I’ll be baking, I’ll be walking, and I’ll be living and learning!

Thanks for reading!

DNA extractions!