Thursday, July 26, 2012

Memories Will Last Forever

My experience here at VSA is really ending on a wonderful note. After a nerve-wracking morning, I can tell you I turned out to be more confident in myself. My group was the first group to arrive at our classroom, so we assisted our professor to run and grab Dunkin’ Donuts. This was probably the last time I will have Dunkin’ Donuts in a long time; I have never been to one in California. Aside from a little treat this morning, my group decided to go up and present first, so we can get it over with and enjoy all the other presentations.

My research project group!
As we began to prepare for our presentation, I was super nervous. That morning, we were notified that each student was not only to grade each group, but also each individual. It kind of upset me that we were to grade each individual within each group, against each other. I felt like since we were a group and we all worked together, we shouldn’t be judged individually. Nevertheless, we just went with the flow.

Practicing our presentation a couple of times really did help us, because we got a feel of how our presentation will flow. 

Two of the main coordinators were in the classroom during our presentation; it made us even more nervous. As I was presenting my study on ADD/ADHD medication, many questions from other students came up. There was one question that just threw me off of my whole study. It basically defeated the whole purpose. However, I kept talking about my research study. My group never considered this aspect on my project, but I realized in the end that it is the whole point of presenting it to other people. You are able to put together ideas to make your research proposal even better.  Some questions really stumped me while I was presenting, but with the help of my teammates we were able to overcome it. At times, we didn’t know how to answer the question, so we just acknowledged the question to consider it for future changes of our project. (We aren't really going to change it, since we aren't real researchers.)

After our presentation was over, there was a big burden lifted off my shoulders. We were happy that we got through it. I was pretty bummed, thinking I screwed up my whole portion of the project; however, I did the best I can and I’m at least satisfied with it. After each presentation, the previous group had to step outside as the other students discussed their research project and ranked each individual. This is similar to how actual research proposals are discussed and voted on. This research project was a good learning experience.
Our last lunch at VSA
My full concept map!
After our last lunch spent with my classmates, we headed back to our classroom to do an academic evaluation. On the first day of class we created a concept map on what we know about drugs. At that point, I really didn’t know a lot, and my paper was pretty empty. On the other hand, the concept map I made today filled the whole paper. There is so much we learned these past three weeks, that it was so hard to remember everything. I’m pretty sure I left a few things out, but I thought our teacher really did a good job. I can say I know a whole lot about drugs now, and the class fit exactly what its descriptions stated!

We continued presenting projects. After each group presented, we all ranked each other’s research project, depending on what we would most likely fund. By popular vote, our group won! Our ADD/ADHD research study came in first place, and we were so happy. We really thought another group won, but I will always remember to expect the unexpected! I am very proud of my group, and all our hard work paid off!
The Pharmacology class!
Our research project won 1st place!
After our last class session, I began to pack once again. I really hope everything fits back in my luggage properly, and it doesn’t end up being over 50 pounds! I had to send a package home with extra souvenirs, just in case!
My last dinner...
All dolled up for the Hollywood dance!

My lovely roommate and I at the photo booth!

It was then time for Closing Ceremonies! Surprisingly, Yessenia and I won the award of "Most Likely To Be Blogging!" Chris and Narges also won awards; representing our school and the ILC proudly! The directors, coordinators, and proctors all instilled in each one of us students that the world is in good hands. Their words of inspiration really touched me, because they are all so happy that we have grown to be a part of their Vanderbilt community. They’re all excited to see us finish up our high school years and maybe even see us on the Vanderbilt campus in the near future. Their confidence in us has just pushed me to do the best I can no matter what. Being a part of the Ivy League Connection program and attending the Vanderbilt Summer Academy has been a big step for me. It proves that I, and we can be whatever we want to be and do whatever we want to do.  Not only did the leaders of VSA prove our worth in this world, but also my fellow proctor group members. 

After the exciting Hollywood dance, we ended our last full day here at VSA with a proctor group meeting. We read off the last bit of POGO, and our proctor left us each a meaningful and memorable note.  Each day I can look at the note, and it will be a reminder that no matter what I struggle with in the future I have the ability to push through with a ball of sunshine! One thing that I will always remember with one of my group members Sierra, is that she will have our backs no matter what. If anyone tells us we’re not capable of doing something or puts us down, she will with no doubt stand up for us. With all the tears and heartfelt words of the night, I can honestly say we have grown as a family of sisters. Tessa, the most sincere, genuine, and friendly proctor is our older sister. She is someone we can talk to at anytime, and she will listen. We are her 14 little sisters, and each person has made my time here at VSA a memorable one!

1 comment:

  1. Hannah Lee,

    There was a time when we were first signing you all up for Vanderbilt where I had sincere doubts about whether the classes offered this year were right for you all. I just didn’t have that warm and fuzzy feeling about them.

    When I showed the new list to Ms. Kahn, her eyes lit up because she knew not only that ALL of these classes would be great for the PVHS cohort but that all of the PVHS applicants were prepared for them.

    She was so right. From reading all of your blogs these past couple of weeks it’s obvious that this was a perfect fit for you all.