It's hard for me to believe that my summer is over. But before I get reflective, a little about my last few days in DC...
My last week at work was pretty uneventful. We went to NIST for a tour, which was positively spectacular. We toured the NCNR and I enjoyed that a lot. At ACP, Mary and I shot the entire promotional video for the SOCK. It's not the best quality, but we had fun making it. A huge thanks to everyone who helped out!
Justin, Daniel, Paul, Barbara, Mary and I had a nice dinner on Friday night at a Lebanese restaurant. Paul and I finally made it to the Air and Space Museum on Saturday. Overall, I wasn't that impressed with it. Air and Space isn't exactly my favorite subject, and some of the exhibits were pretty dated. A few of the exhibits were pretty cool, specifically some of the space ones. On Sunday, Justin, Daniel, Paul and I drove up to Medieval Times, which was pretty spectacular. The acting was horrific, but we were there for the show as a whole, not for the acting. The rest of the week was fairly uneventful, as we all began the process of packing and cleaning our apartments in Schenley Hall.
To parallel my troubles getting into DC, I had quite a trip home. My direct flight was scheduled to leave at 9:20 on Thursday morning, so I went through security at DCA around 8:30. First, my flight was delayed until 10:10... then 1:00 pm... then it disappeared all together. The plane we were supposed to take hadn't even left Indy, due to "unscheduled maintenance." They canceled the flight and everyone rushed to book another flight. The next direct flight was booked, so I ended up going through Detroit and getting home roughly five hours after I was originally scheduled to land.
I really can't believe that this entire summer is over. This has been an absolutely wonderful and irreplaceable experience. For a while I've considered teaching as a possible career plan after college, but my teaching experience has been severely limited. I've learned this summer how much work goes into teaching: lesson plans, pedagogy considerations, time and supply limitations... it's insane. My SPS chapter doesn't do much in terms of educational outreach, so I had very little idea of what exactly I was getting into. But now I have an idea of how to do outreach like this and can help my chapter and other chapters in my zone. I'm really proud of the work Mary and I did on the SOCK; I hope it's effective. At the beginning of the summer, I felt rather lazy, thanks to my physics-empty semester in Madrid. This summer has put me back on track and I feel prepared for my last year at Rhodes.
For me however, the most important thing is always the people that I meet. I am so grateful to have met and learned from Gary, Kendra, Liz, and the entire Education staff. I learned so much from Erin and the others at MRSEC too. I was impressed by everyone's passion. At SPS, it seems as though great ideas just float around in the air, there are so many! MRSEC has been teaching summer camps for free for years. None of the counselors were experts in what we taught; we learned right alongside with the kids. And the other interns? Some of the best people I've met. I can't thank them enough for sharing this experience with me. We shared apartments, Metro rides, dinners, stories, and our experiences. I'm less than 48 hours away and already it seems odd not to have everyone around all the time.
In short, this internship has been everything I thought it would be, and more. Much love, and I'll see you in November!