So much has happened in the past few months. Honestly, sophomore and junior year seem like a dream now. They just blew right past me! Today was the last day of classes of my junior year. It was pretty relaxed. At 11 am I had a one-hour review for my Kinetics course, and at 12 pm a one-hour review for Algebra. I have so many assignments and papers and not to mention finals to finish before my junior year is officially over, so I feel like I shouldn’t start celebrating just yet…
For a while this semester I was honestly stressing about my future. With senior year encroaching so quickly, I began fretting about grad school…about post graduation. At the beginning of the semester I wrote a blog about applying to math research programs for the summer. It was an incredibly grueling and tough time, and for the most part programs don’t even contact you with a rejection if you aren’t chosen so there is a sincere feeling of being in limbo. These programs are incredibly competitive, accepting only 5-10% of the applicants.
I received some great news that I was accepted into the program at UCLA. I received a call while I was napping after an extremely late night/early morning of doing homework. At first I wondered who was calling me from a California, and to my delight when I answered it was someone for IPAM (Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics.) Even after a twenty minute conversation on the phone with someone from UCLA, I sort of thought it was a dream until I received a hoard of emails from the department the next day. I feel so incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to go to UCLA this summer (which has an absolutely incredible and very prestigious math department.) I am so grateful I had such generous math professors from Hopkins that were willing to stand up for me and write me great letters as well.
I am feeling so much more optimistic about my future now. I know I am going to have a great experience in California this summer. I’ve actually never been to CA, but I’ve always dreamed of going. For a while in high school I wanted only to apply to colleges in CA. I guess I’ve always sort of romanticized CA like the characters in The Grapes of Wrath (love that book!), and to me it is kind of like the final frontier.
A part of me feels like anything is possible; that there still is hope. Sometimes it is really easy to begin to feel like all hope is lost, but I guess it can still be renewed. I feel so much more optimistic about my future and my abilities and passions. It’s crazy to think my time at Hopkins is almost over. Suddenly now it seems really worth it. This strange memory of my freshmen year keeps popping into my head recently. It is spring semester, and I am wearing shorts in the library up very late trying to do my number theory homework, then I am on the quad and it is quiet and empty. It’s strange and kind of weird, but I keep thinking about that night over and over again for no reason.