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Winter 2024

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Change is Scary...

From academic planning jump-scares, to fulfilling goals from quarters past, this was the quarter where change was the game.

SURPRISE! You're graduating early...
Academic Planning takes a sudden turn

"So with all this said, is there any possibility I could graduate early?"

"Oh certainly, you could finish this spring even!"

​😲

Since Jackson Wild/Base Camp in Autumn quarter, a new idea started to fester in my mind: could I graduate early to jump on these amazing projects that have aligned into my life?

Apparently, the answer was a resounding yes.  I went from almost dropping Honors and Marine Biology in my first year of undergrad because I was nervous I "couldn't fit" everything into my schedule, to discovering I could COMPLETE EEC Bio, Marine Bio, and Honors within my next few quarters. My immediate reaction was "the math isn't mathing" but here we are.

SInce discussing this possibility across all my advisors, I plan on graduating at the end of autumn quarter 2024. AKA, this is my last year of college... WHAT!?

I am still dissecting my emotions about this new plan. If anything, I have plenty of things lined up for me just after graduating, which I'm very grateful for. I'll be going to Colombia with my hummingbird lab to shoot a documentary and do some field work, in addition to the production of my very own KIDS' SHOW in the following spring. I think the most important thing for me to consider in this crazy development is to stay true to my relationships and keep connections warm as I float around and out of the university system. I certainly have plans of graduate school and continued projects related to academia and research, but I think I need more time to figure out what keeps me most motivated and joyful to engage in that type of work. I want to make sure that loneliness is out of 2024. Regardless of what path I'm on, I know that working diligently to stay in the loop with my friends and family will only benefit me in the end.

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Looking Back on it all
Taking HONORS 496, a year before I thought I would

Evolving from the aforementioned PANIC of to idea of graduating early came the decision to sign up for HONORS496 this quarter. This would be my final opportunity to take the course, as I would spend the spring quarter of 2024 in Friday Harbor Labs, and my final quarter in Autumn would have me graduate well before the next 496 offering takes place.

This change to my schedule seems like a minor even. What's another 1-credit seminar course? It would be my official FINAL honors course ever at UW, and that brought up many more emotions than I anticipated. 

There is something so scary about taking a course that is meant to happen at the well-planned end of your college career, RIGHT in the middle of a massive academic planning reconfiguration.  One of the very first assignments from this course was titled "Looking Back". I look back on my college experience and honestly feel a sense of panic. College is going to be over in just a few more breaths, and I can honestly say that it FLEW by way faster than anything else I've experienced. Compared to high school, college was legitimately a blink of an eye. 

This of course made me quite sad. I am forever thankful for the amazing connections and opportunities that have come about during my time in college, but I cannot escape the feeling that things are moving much faster than ever. I would love to work on these emotions as I officially wrap up my time in university. I still have the remainder of the year to explore these emotions and hopefully redirect them for the better. I don't want to live life feeling scared about the next steps or regretful about how I spent my recent years. I want to be sure that I am being true to myself and my intentions/passions as things come to a close.

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