Thursday, September 01, 2005

"This is NOT a youth group for grad students."

Thus said the main staff worker for a group of Christian students that is primarily responsible for me (a) still being sane* and (b) still being in grad school. This was at our first get together for this year, and it was fantastic in so many ways. I shall endeavor to count a few.

(1) Seeing a face that was familiar from somewhere outside my existence as a grad student: someone I knew from college is now a first year grad student in another program at my university!

(2) A lot of laughing.

(3) Hearing a previously mentioned male math TA describe a standardized test he had to take during the grad school application process to the non-math people in the room as "You get a 15 percent, that's the national average. You're doing well. You get a 20, that's 'How much grant money would you like, Sir?'"

(4) Chatting for an extended period of time with fellow Christian foreign language grad people about foreign language grad student stuff. There are very few of us. I really appreciate getting to spend time with those who I am fortuate enough to know.

(5) The presence of a good deal of good food. I contributed cupcakes to the spread.

(6) More laughter.

(7) Trading stories about pranks pulled at our respective undergraduate schools.

(8) Seeing people who were elsewhere doing research or taking classes during the summer.

*Or as close to sane as a person who wants to spend most of the rest of her life in academia can be. For most grad students, you have to set the bar a little lower in that regard...