…by Katherine / from Canada / PhD Biomedical Sciences 2015-2018
The Fringe is officially over. The giant purple cow has been deflated, the posters have been taken down and there is no longer anyone handing out flyers. Between the tourists who have left and the students who have not yet arrived for Freshers, George Square is quiet and peaceful.
I have a confession, I may or may not have been converted to a Fringe fan! I cannot believe I am saying this, much less writing it here for everyone to see! Although I had only bought tickets to 3 shows as of my last blog post, I ended up going to 5 shows, that’s right, 5 shows! I enjoyed all of them. I saw magic and comedy and illusions and circus and hypnosis and improv oh my! I also did enjoy having both the Assembly and Underbelly bars a stone’s throw away from the lab. All the food trucks did also make for good lunch and supper options. I immersed myself in all things Fringe this year and I did enjoy it, although I am very happy to get some peace and quiet back.
The good new is that I had caught up on my data analysis. The bad news is that I have fallen behind again. I must just be that productive at taking images on the microscope hehehe. The problem is, if I don’t do this analysis, I don’t know whether or not my experiments are finished! I am also attempting to pioneer a new protocol in the lab, so I have been going around the building asking everyone I know for tips on various steps of this elaborate protocol. I have read and re-read papers to try to figure out the best protocols to use. Ultimately I have opted to use the manufacturer’s protocol for each step to date and let me tell you, they really work. Those manufacturers do know their stuff.
This post has been delayed a few days because I have been getting ready for my 2nd year progress meeting which was today. This meeting is with my supervisors and the chair of my committee. There is not really a fixed format for this meeting (not like for our 1st-year meeting. In my case, I opted to do a short data presentation to show everyone (specifically my second supervisor and chair) what I had been up to since I became a real PhD student. My 15 slides turned into an hour long presentation… but overall it was extremely productive. I got some good feedback and great ideas for other experiments that would compliment what I have already done. It was also incredibly scary! I AM GOING INTO MY FINAL YEAR! The end of this meeting was spent discussing staying on-track, finishing all my experiments and writing up my thesis. It was also a chance to discuss my future plans and what I intend to do with myself after I submit. Apparently I have until Christmas to mull it over and then I should start contacting prospective supervisors (*giant apprehensive gulp*). I know I have already been in Edinburgh for 3 years, but I really feel like the end of my PhD has crept up on me. So my plan for the next 12 months is to work hard and produce the best and loveliest thesis that there ever was.
Now I will leave you, as I go ponder my future and make a detailed list (my favourite thing to do) of what needs to be done before September 2017…