Skip to main content

Back to school- The 1 month journey as a doctoral student in the United states!





Back again : But now I am student! Yeah, yeah, I do know we are all students; as learning never stops. Now, I am just Piled Higher and Deeper. Yes, a PhD student! The university I am in to is University of Tennessee, Knoxville. I am thankful to God that I got in to this program. I am really lucky to pursue this program in communications, majoring in advertising! Well, it's a field that I was and is always keen on. Thankful that I got in to a university which is really good in this subject/area. It is also great thing that I get to study staying at home especially with a hubby to support!

Well, now this doesn't mean that everything is just happy and nice here. I am really 'Piled Higher and Deeper !'. The first class was a month ago and it was a wednesday. So, I had a philosophy class followed by an advertising class. The philosophy class was totally mind boggling (in literal sense) and didn't have any clue of what was discussed :P. The Advertising class was with one professor with whom I am going to work on some project as a research assistant and teaching assistant. This was an awesome one as it was something I was looking at learning for long. The professor is just awesome. Note- I didn't mean that the other professor is not, its just that this happens to be a class i was looking forward to so seemed to have made me happy!

With every other class and every other week, the assignments and reading materials just piled higher and higher. It was to be deeper but I am not sure how deep i delved in. The interesting thing i felt was the culture shock I had in the class. Having studied all my life in India and even after having changed eight different schools and in different states, I have never had any problem adjusting to such a change. But this one is like a shock! I LOVE the system but HATE a lot of things. Not sure how to word them here, as its a bit complex.

Even though you find polite and friendly people, you still feel singled out. You feel that you are the only one there who is from an alien state. May be, the ones from the science departments would not feel the pinch as they would surely have at least seniors in their departments who share their nationality!

For a person who loves books and reading, the library was heaven. It was love at first sight. Yeah, i wish that there were more books in their collection. :) Well, I also met some wonderful folks and i hope I get to interact with them more often.

But the highlight of this entire one month is that, it is teaching me and testing my ability to hold on and pursue my dream. I am happy as i am learning lot more, thinking (assume, i was doing that earlier too! ) deeply, questioning the why's and how's and trying to work on research that will do some good to the world I am in.

Of course, I do hope one thing from all my heart- that I don't lose the very little hair I am left with by the time I graduate!

Anyways, see ya guys. Have a great week ahead. Hope to write more often !

Love,
Meenu

2 comments

Popular posts from this blog

Day 307: Happy Chingam !

Today is Chingam 1 (to be read as onnu). It is the new month according to the lunisolar calendar. This month is also called as Avani and Shravana. So, why is this month special?  This month marks the beginning of the festival season back home and the it is fun to have small celebrations through the months until  mid- December. It is also the month of Onam (Harvest festival in Kerala).

The first festival we have this month is the 'sacred thread' changing ceremony for men/boys who wear that. This is followed by usually the birthday of little Krishna and then the elephant-head god, Ganesha. Then comes Onam followed by the beautiful month of Navaratri or Durga Pooja. So, the big set of festival season is here and here is a wish to all of you on Chingam 1. Wishing you all blessed and excellent months ahead. Have fun!

Day 315 : What's on your bucket list?

Bucket List. A term that has become popular much after the famous movie with the same title in 2007. The term would have probably taken after the euphemism 'kick the bucket', which was again popularized in the movie, 'It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world'. The 2007 movie was a massive hit and how would it be not? It had Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman in the lead. The term was meant to have a list of things you wish you can do before you leave this world.

It is like a goal list that can evolve as you grow and change perspectives in life. I used to have a wish list that worked as a to-do list mostly like a work list for short-term goals. However, off late, I have decided to make one and keep it as an ever evolving list.

The first one on my list as of now (that was from the past too) is to get my biggest degree in life. Hopefully I will tick that one off my list soon.

Do share your thoughts on your list and how do you plan on getting it all checked out.

Love,
M

Day 57: Manjadikuru (The Little Red Seeds)

Do you guys know about Manjadikuru ? They are the little red seeds. For anyone who is from God's own country or is familiar with Kerala wouldn't have missed this. There is something special about holding them, playing with these seeds. Usually, most homes will have a small 'uruli' or a bowl filled with these beautiful and shiny red seeds. In most Krishna temples in Kerala, you will come across a small 'uruli' with Manjadikuru. People believe that it is lucky to take these seeds with both hands and just play with them when you visit a temple. Some even leave a couple of coins as they do this.  In Guruvayoor (my favorite place), you can see a big 'uruli' with manjadi. 

So, why and how did this become prevalent ? It goes back to a story from the past. Many years ago, there lived a poor lady in northern Kerala. She was an ardent devotee of Lord Guruvayoorappan (Krishna) and always wanted to visit Guruvayoor.  She could not afford to buy any offering (nived…