Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Yeah for Graduation Ceremonies!

Well, I finally graduated. I'm doing this long enough after the end of the semester that I've also gotten the last of my grades, so I'll talk about that a little too.

Graduation day was really fun. It was a great chance to hang out with my wife, my parents, and my wife's parents for the day. In the morning I had to line up to march with my class. There were so many graduates that it took me a while to find some buddies to sit with. I didn't want to spend that whole ceremony with nobody to chat with. The main speaker was Mario Capecchi, who was honored this year with the Nobel Prize for his research in mamalian diseases. He spoke mostly on curbing the amount of CO and CO2 that humans dump into the atmoshpere every day. The University is making a huge deal out of this guy. They gave him another honorary degree and named a street after him and he's the kind of guy that seems to be more happy by himself in the lab than constantly being in the spotlight. He did make some good points about global awareness.

For lunch we walked down to the Union. I thought it was going to be very crowded, but I was wrong. There was less than a handful of others around. I had some chinese which was delicious. After lunch we went to the bookstore and took advantage of the graduation day sale they were having. I bought a new hoody and Chelsea bought some new lounge pants. Mom also bought us some stuff which was great.

After the bookstore we headed back up to the Hunstman Center where the engineering commencement was going to start. The previous graduation was still going on so we walked around for a while. Pretty soon it was time for me to head to the tunnel and get ready to line up to march. That was fun because I got to hang out with all my buddies from school. We took a bunch of pictures together and just spent time congratulating each other and ourselves. Commencement is really the time for us to celebrate together. I saw guys that I've known since way back in the day at Salt Lake Community College. It's been a long time coming, but I never regret the expense, the effort, or the difficulties I had to overcome to complete the process. Actually, the opposite is true. I'm glad for everything I went through during school. Without the process I coudn't have developed the skills I have now. My life is richer for the knowledge gained. I often say that engineering school has ruined me because I can't look at anthing the same way. The simplest of things inspire curiosity in my mind. Before school an airplane was fascinating, now it's completely mind-boggling, even though I much better understand the principles that make it work.

The next adventure in store for me is to learn about how gigantic navy ships are powered by nuclear reactors. All of science is simple principles and engineering is applying those simple principles in systems with others to accomplish great things. This is a great time to be an engineer.


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