[V] is for Varsity

One of my seminar professors once said that doing a Ph.D is socially isolating. To this I respond, “I think not!” Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful to have the opportunity to work on a Ph.D, in an area of research that I’m passionate about, with a supervisor who is compassionate, supportive and an all-around fantastic human being, but the Ph.D is only one component of my life. As this blog will (hopefully!) demonstrate, I’m more than a Ph.D student. I have a life outside of my studies, I have friends and family who I love, and more than my fair share of hobbies that I plan to maintain. In addition to keeping me happy, these hobbies – nay, passions – keep me mentally, physically and emotionally healthy and strong. They’re great opportunities to meet new people, to challenge yourself and grow, and they’re once-in-a-lifetime.

This – and many other reasons – is why I run with the UOttawa Cross Country & Track and Field team. I’m the oldest rookie on the team, but I’m pretty short, so I blend in (that’s me, second from the left in the front row with the pink headband). I am beyond grateful for the opportunity to train and compete as a #geegee and look forward to continuing to do so for the next four years.

On the days when studying feels like it’s never going to end, I always know that there’s a run at the end of the tunnel.

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[M] is for Motivation

In September of last year (2016), when I started my Ph.D at the University of Ottawa (OttawaU / UOttawa), I registered for what feels like my millionth blog. I’ve been blogging off and on since the Internet was invented – okay, that’s a bit of stretch, but my first blog was a tribute toΒ Buffy the Vampire Slayer on GeoCities back in the mid-1990s. I intended to start blogging about my experience as a Ph.D student in September, but as with most things in life, well, you know what they say about #goodintentions.

With the beginning of my second semester of the Ph.D and a new course taught by Professor Pierre Levy, the opportunity has arisen toΒ FINALLY pull together the blog. And by opportunity, I mean course requirement. But, to quote a new person in my life, #worksmart. Or to quote a long time favourite:

“Two birds, one stone, and boom. You have yummy dead birds.”Β 

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– Glory, “Blood Ties”, Buffy the Vampire Slayer