5. They haggle with their teachers for extra points.
As a teaching assistant, I would have been rich if my pre-med students gave me a dime every time they nagged me for partial credit on questions that they had gotten completely wrong.
4. They use questionable tactics to get good grades.
Some of them may turn to study drugs like adderall, dexedrine, provigil, and ritalin. Others will beg upperclassmen for copies of old exams, which give them an unfair advantage over their classmates.
3. They horde leadership positions and then run organizations into the ground.
To pad their résumés, they run for the presidency of science clubs and volunteer organizations, and then fail to fulfill their responsibilities because they are too busy studying.
2. They game the system to get good grades.
By strategically dropping any class that is not going well and carefully picking courses taught by the easiest professors they ensure themselves a good grade point average.
1. They are not motivated by curiosity.
If they ask a question in class, it’s often to find out what will be on an upcoming exam. Some of them volunteer to work in a lab on real research projects, but they don’t give it their all because they have no passion for scientific inquiry — it’s just another line on their résumés.

– From Wired.com

All in good fun, of course. It’s just… there’s SO MANY pre-meds here at Ursinus. So I saw this and couldn’t help but laugh. WITH you! :P

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I just got a generic letter from Ursinus. It contained miscellaneous information about what has been going on over summer and into the fall.

One of the bulleted remarks is about New Hall, a new dorm building that should be open during the fall semester and will be my home for the next year. But, wait, did they seriously name it “New Hall?” Later on in the bulleted item, they talk about “New” as well as “Richter-North” [that’s the building right next to New]. So they might just be sticking with that name. Which I would just find personally amazing.

I can’t wait to live in New. Until it’s not new. Then will they call it Old?

Oh, Ursinus. :)

Nah, just kiddin’! Well, the bell did toll on my freshman year. But only in that ‘School’s finally over, I can stop cramming my brain with useless information’ sort of way. Now I can get back to reading about consciousness, philosophy, neuroscience, and technology. You know, the useful stuff [and yet again I feel as if I should maybe reconsider my major. But only for a split second before moving on to the next paragraph].

I think I’ll go into a more exhaustive examination of this year, my first at college. But first let’s give time a chance to put some distance [both physical and temporal] between me and this past year. And besides, I most certainly need my semester grades before I make any broad, overgeneralized remarks! [Okay, not really. I learned a lot in the courses, so the grades don’t matter. But damn if school hasn’t hammered into me that grades are so, well, nice].

Expect a great deal of thinking in the coming months. With my brain off conformity-crack, the only place to go is up. Up to the latest and greatest in consciousness, spirituality, science, and of course, current events.

Like can you believe that [insert your own typical D. Darmon trivial gripe of the moment].

Namaste. To this year. To all of you. And to everything and everyone that has made my life possible up to this point [which, when you think about it, is really the entire universe].

Hu-f’in-Zah!!!

May 3, 2007

Well, it’s a little less than an hour until 4, and I’m already done all my [important] finals. How does it feel, you ask? Amazing! Like, I can’t even begin to describe it. Sure, the adrenaline rush will pass in a few hours and I’ll pass back into my everyday stuppor [now with MUCH less studying]. But for now I think I’ll just bathe in this state of consciousness for a little bit. Aaaah. [more…]

Time for a mind dump. Literally, a giant dump of my mind onto this page. And this page eventually shifting to this blog. And this blog shifting to your eyes, your neurons, and eventually your brain.

Okay, nevermind. I don’t want to go that stream of consciousness. I’m just not feeling that right now. But I do feel like freezing this moment in time. For no really good reason. This moment won’t ultimately matter too much in the future. It won’t matter that much in 24 hours when I’m [insert illegal state {of being} that I won’t actually be in]. But maybe that’s a good enough reason to write this. To remind myself not to take myself so seriously. Because God knows I could use a hearing of that every once in a while! [more…]

My souvenir from the last day of O Chem I Lab. Only cost me $20 dollars. ;)

It would seem as if this whole chemistry major thing isn’t going to “pay for itself.” At least not any time soon.

I’m already 30+ dollars in the hole. And I’m only one semester in.

:(

But as my dad always says, the probability of glass breaking is 1.

I like those odds.

I guess I’ve put this off long enough.

Second semester. Qualified with freshman year. Qualified with ‘of college.’

I have a relatively jam-packed schedule. Though ironically, the class that I added to take me over the credit-cap doesn’t really add much busy-ness to my schedule. Oh, the irony.

I’m taking five classes this semester: Latin, Organic Chemistry, Discrete Math, Cell Biology, and Common Intellectual Experience (CIE)*.

Latin is fun. I find myself having tons of epiphanies this semester about words and their etymological roots. Take neuter for example. It comes from a combination of “ne” (not) and “uter” (each of the two). So “ne+uter” means neither of the two. I know, you could find that in just about any dictionary, but it’s more fun when you realize it for yourself! And our teacher, different from last semester, also knows a whole boat-load about the roots of Indo-European languages. For example, the word vigilare means to be awake. In the transference of words from Latin to the Germanic languages, and then eventually the English language (the English language comes from a mix of the languages of the Saxon and Anglo tribes of Germany), the letter g loses it’s guttural sound and gains a hard sound, becoming a “k” sound. The letter “v” in Latin is pronounced as a “w” in English. So, from the Latin “vigil” you get wikil-, and eventually, wake. Pretty cool, huh? I love that sort of stuff! If only I could take a class on ONLY etymology…

Now to the land of science and mathematics. Organic is pretty cool. Though we’ve yet to learn anything new as of yet. Mostly we learned about bonding, acids and bases, and about bond hybridization. Nothing all that stellar. But the class has potential. My brother and dad both fell in love with organic chemistry, so there’s always that chance. Though I see myself as more of a physical chemist, personally.

Discrete Mathematics. A very strange class. Being as it deals with the most basic tenets of mathematics, Discrete is easy and challenging at the same time. A section might cover a problem such as: Find the next number in this sequence: 2, 4, 6, 8, __. The very next problem might have to do with the fundamentals of our mathematical system. Woah?! Yeah. This class definitely shows the most potential for pushing me as a student and a thinker. I look forward to the challenge.

Cell Biology: AP, take two. But dumbed down. Yeah, Cell Bio is a fun class. I like the teacher. I don’t like being in a class with 70 bio majors. They all scare me with their… bio-ness. And uM (micromolar). I have to say, both Mr. O and Mr. Hagan did a FANTASTIC job teaching us. Because this class has been a cakewalk so far. And looks to stay that way. Thermodyanics? OH NO!?!?! Psh, I could do that stuff in my sleep. Hydrogen bonding?!?!?! Just picture Mr. H doing his fun H-bond grabbing bonanza.**

CIE. Well, I like the readings. First semester mostly covered the ancient texts of the Western world. Not my cup of tea. I look forward to getting into Enlightenment thinking. That’s the kind I can relate to. Nice.

Well, there you have it. I left out the lab classes. But I left them out because I don’t like them. Though, ironically, they’re the ones I need the most… Sigh…

I hope YOUR second semester of school / life is going well.

Namaste.

* CIE for all future references refers to a humanities class in which we explore the “three big questions”: how should we live our lives; what is our place in the universe; and what does it mean to be human? We rarely ever ACTUALLY pursue those classes. But what can you expect from what is effectively a Gen Ed class covering questions that have puzzled humanity from the beginning of time?

**Dude, our high school teachers ROCKED! You don’t realize that until you get to college and everyone’s lost and you’re thinking, ‘But Mr./Mrs. X said ___. Look, it’s so simple…”

Manama… Wha?!?!?!

January 6, 2007

I opened an e-mail this morning titled “REGISTRATION / SPRING 2007.” Sounds boring, right? Lookie what I found, though!

Add the song playing the background, for effect.

I must say, Ursinus, you just made my day.

:)

Get it, cause I don’t study. Oh…

Anyway, for those of you that haven’t been keeping up with Ze Frank (and why aren’t you?! Come on, how many times do I have to point out his genius?!), his skit today couldn’t be more pertinent to us! Check out his advice on preparing for those ever imposing finals.

The coolest part is that I got pointed to this by my Calculus professor. I <3 liberal art colleges. :)

Namaste.

Reporting from UC

August 31, 2006

Well, I haven’t been creating much as of late. Lots of consuming though. I’m in major read mode now. Lots and lots of reading. I love it. Now I just need to find the right creative outlet so that I don’t get constipated (yes, that’s right, I’m making the comparison between creation and defecation!).

Oh wait, this blog! Hehehe. Man, I really wanted to make a vblog called, “What I Really Learned In Ursinus.” But I still don’t have my mac back, and therefore I have no camera. But don’t worry, the moment I get that thing back, we’ll have some humorous little stories to tell.

And just in case you forgot what I look like, I’ve included a jpeg of myself for your viewing pleasure. I had to remind myself to smile though. Wow, that shows how much I’m in my head right now (no, I’m not unhappy, I just have kind of disembodied myself the past few days, so I forgot to make my outward appearance more socially polite during the first picture I took. :) ).

Ursinus 8.31.06