05 // A practical guide to your first engineering conference

Since this was the first time I’d attended an engineering conference of this scale, and my first time presenting at one, I didn’t know what to expect. More senior doctoral students had told me about their experiences at other conferences, but it became apparent that each has its own character, its own charms and idiosyncrasies. Nevertheless, I thought I’d share some general reflections on and learnings from my experience, both for my own future reference and in the hopes that other graduate students might benefit, too. I’ve scaffolded this mix of commentary around short pieces of advice, listed here in rough chronological order from pre-conference preparations to post-conference follow-ups.

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04 // Hiking, Camping, and Freedom From Choice

There is one order, a definitive linear order to follow in the world of camping. Sometimes, I don’t even have the extra energy to think - I am entirely consumed by the act of putting one foot in front of the other, perhaps because my pack is heavy, or the sun is hot, or the trail goes ever more steeply upward. In any case, I cannot progress unless I follow that one order to things. And it’s soothing to not have any choices beyond when to stop for water, or to admire a view.

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WYW // Worth Your While: Lethal Sexism, Tim Ferriss, Secrets of Successful Research Students

A combination of final exams, a spring break trip to Stockholm, and some research gearing up diverted my time and attention from blogging. So until next week's essay on the American concept of and obsession with leadership, enjoy some links!

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03 // The Notorious RBG and What We Expect of Our Heroes

I had taken pages and pages of notes - yet I had no better understanding of Ginsburg or the meaning of life to show for it. Ginsburg's responses were by and large already on the record. Later, a friend of mine pointed out that expecting someone to address the meaning of life might be an unreasonable expectation. I replied that it might be, but then again that was the whole point of the lecture. Her comment got me thinking, however. What is fair to expect of our role models and heroes?

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WYW // Worth Your While: Russell Westbrook, what3words, Rebecca Solnit

One of the ways these blogs garner my loyalty is by linking to quality content. When I don't have a particular destination in mind, the internet can feel awfully vast and difficult to navigate. In the spirit of sharing and - dare I say it - curating, I'll be posting links to my favorite web-based content every other week. I found these links to be worth my while - I hope they'll prove worth your while, too. 

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