Well I have finished my first week of PhD classes. Actually, it was really only the first 3 days, but nevertheless I got to experience all of my classes. I gotta say I really like this school. It is so powerful, and so diverse. It is totally different than Texas State was. The experience on campus is not that much unlike being in a large international hub airport like Heathro wor O’Hare. Thousands of people all around you, hundreds of different languages. This place is certainly a cultural Mecca.
Classes this semester should be fun, if not really hard. I have a Philosophy of Geographic Thought class that should be a good reading class. I’ll be well versed in all of the ‘isms I can manage by the end. I am also in a PhD intro class that I will call Dog and Pony (after the equivalent at TxState), basically all of the geography faculty will take turns with a lecture, giving advice, introducing us to their research, etc. An easy, but useful class to be sure. The kicker is my civil & environmental engineering (CEE) class. For those not in the know, U of I’s CEE department is the best (tied this year w/ Stanford) in the country, and the hydrualics lab is legendary (I am still amazed I made it in to this place). I am taking Open Channel Hydraulics, an intense course in how fluids flow when there is a free surface (think river) with Dr. Marcello Garcia. If I can hang in on this class, I’ll be in great shape. Finally, I am taking an independent study, in which I’ll be reading and writing a lit. review on Stream Naturalization. A lot of reading to be sure. All of that and I will also be doing field work with my office mates Shane and Jim in local rivers.
I am stoked about this semester, and I hope I am up to the task. In addition, I want to try to keep this site updated for family, friends and all.
Well that’s enough for now, back to the books…