What topsy-turvy these past few weeks have been! I have been busier than ever before, be it exams or travels or observing Pluto or organising trips and attending conferences, but summer is now here and I really hope to keep on writing more in the next couple of months at least. This website needs a little love. And I’ve just paid another upgrade to keep the private domain… so I’d better use it, darn it.
I have managed to somehow survive year two of my murderous undergraduate degree. Hallelujah! And I’d say I’m halfway there now – but lo and behold, this may actually mark two-thirds of my time at Warwick. This is the point in my life when I am faced with another choice, potentially relaying the tiles of my future career path, landing in a load more student debt along the winding way. The choice to either continue on a three-year BSc mathematics and physics course or move over to the dark side of four years MPhys is a killer for someone so painstakingly indecisive! This is no longer me choosing between chocolate or vanilla ice cream. This is a sodding grown up decision to be made. And I do not enjoy being an adult.
Going down the three year route, I would like to think that graduating with a 2:1 could then lead me on to apply for a taught masters leaning towards atmospheric and climate science – perhaps meteorology. I’m coming to this realisation, that merely remaining buried in this hole of worries about climate change will do nothing to counteract it. Whereas research into it, would. I feel it is like some sort of spiritual calling, I don’t know. Like I can so clearly see myself working in this field – be it research for a university, or the Met Office, or the Environment Agency, or whatever. I can see it. The rain is gone.
But. This would be more of a viable option for a PhD. Changing course and university after 3 years of an undergrad degree, just for another year, is not as much hassle as it is risk! There’s no guarantee that I, out of a lot of applicants, would manage to get onto that masters programme – especially since so few universities in the UK specialise in meteorology related subjects. I’d hate to make the choice to stay at Warwick only for 3 years of UG, with the hope of completing an MSc in, say Reading or Exeter or Birmingham, then not managing to be accepted via any application.
Or is that just another irrational fear? Stopping me from doing what I can see happening?
Staying at Warwick for another two years at the cost of ditching the maths side of my Maths and Physics degree does sound quite appealing too; after all, I know the institution, the academics, they know me, no faffing about with extra funding searches… and yet I am scared. I fear that it would be too difficult. Can I really stand another two years of so many core modules that sometimes simply bore the living daylights out of me? Not to mention I’ve had some personal problems – everybody does, I guess – but I’ve really been held back from performing to my full potential in this last year, especially. Would another two years be the same? Should I just cut it at three, and move away from this place? And be the one wearing that graduation robe in ~365 days’ time? I’d love a change of scene – it would definitely come with a PhD! But I am not sure if I’m strong or intelligent or motivated enough to do stay on for 3 or 4 years after a masters.
My mind is in a meddled state. It feels like I should really have my life – or the next decade at least – all laid out on the table. I feel like if I don’t yet fully know what I want out of life, in this moment in time, then I never will – and I will forever be roaming around aimlessly, trying to hold on to anything vaguely familiar or safe. Like staying on 4 years MPhys is safe. Moving out elsewhere to pursue a more specific MSc with climate links is not safe. But it’s exciting.
In other news: summer! Post exams, I have been travelling a little: in the UK to RMetS conference in Birmingham (blog post to surely follow in due time!), also to one of my favourite places ever, known to most as Italy. It was actually a trip to Milan to check out Expo 2015, an extravaganza of the world’s efforts to increase future food sustainability, raise awareness of UN efforts to strive towards gender equality in developing countries, decrease poverty and help tackle climate change. Altogether a very relevant experience for myself, although my other half might recount a slightly different side to the story, focussing on heat, tiredness, sweat and lots of walking….
Coming up, some reckless members of Warwick’s Physics Society have entrusted me to lead them onto a voyage to err… CERN. I, along with another trip coordinator, am apparently supposed to be responsible for 15 students going to a country where I’ve never been before. Ha. Let’s get this straight: I love travelling; I love being in a position of responsibility, I love physics (particles? Well, alright, not my favourite topic but let’s roll with it). But… I can’t help but feel like something will inevitably go wrong! Either way, another chance to blog it all up afterwards 🙂
And inbetween all that: I’m back to the bogstandard café summer job; I’m a freshly cooked up auntie (or ciocia, to save the Polish!), I’m volunteering at the Green Man festival later down the line… and hopefully reading, cooking, running and writing a lot more inbetween!
Finally: hello summer 🙂