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Home » Discover Rackham » Dear Fellow Graduate Student…

Did you just have planned a weekend that was full and enriching, with just the right balance between work and play, so you could start the week with an empty to-do list and plenty of spirit in the tank? Good for you!

Oh no, did you oversleep by 3 hours, and have now had to cancel “fun reading” time? And you now have to do laundry during Peak Laundry Hour? Yes, it's okay to pretend that the suspicious washer which doesn't seem to do much actually gets your clothes clean. Also okay to take a chance on the rotten dryer that's the only one not in use, let it swallow your coins, and then kick it a couple of times when it fails to start. If you do try tipping it forward to make it regurgitate your quarters, I'd recommend having a keen sense of balance.

It's alright if your plans for an elaborate piping hot breakfast now have to be replaced by cold cereal because you have to rush to lab to culture your cells. And don't give yourself a hard time if you have to take out that pack of pre-made Trader Joe's Indian food that you had carefully stowed away for middle-of-the-week blues.

It's okay to tell your family you can't join them for a family-wide conference call because you have to on work on your paper. It's less okay when you get distracted by your Twitter feed and end up writing an angry dissertation on why Frodo was, in fact, a genuine hero (He was. No arguments here.)

Oh, there comes that e-mail from your lab manager reminding you that you have to present a paper at the lab’s Journal Club this week. Go ahead and choose: you can either start the week with an empty to-do list or plenty of fuel in the tank. Yes, we're all good grad students, so we applaud your decision to go with the paper. And yes, you are allowed to (p)reward yourself with a latte for your commitment.

Oh, it's a 26 page paper in ‘Cell’ that you have to read, understand, summarize and present. Bye work, hello Netflix. And happy Sunday!