Today was a very exciting day for everyone, it was the last day of classes! I stopped by Einstein Bros to get a bagel and stock up on retail items then went to class. I was very excited to learn that there would be no afternoon class today. The morning was spent on Hershey Park roller coaster data analysis presentations. I found all of the presentations to be very exciting. Of course the data was interesting, but my favorite part was seeing how each group put together a presentation on the same information. They were all so unique!
Next came my absolute favorite part: the heartwarming, tearjerking speeches. Eli Lesser talked to us and repeatedly told us how remarkable each and every one of us is. He even mentioned the team of spies that has been blogging every single night of the trip. Yup that's right, he mentioned the Ivy League Connection. After Eli's truly inspirational speech came Bill's. Bill choked up during his speech and for me that really showed how dedicated he is to doing what he loves. When I saw Bill get emotional, it reminded me of a Dr. Seuss quote that can be applied to almost all "goodbye's" in life. "Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened." Yes, it's been a truly amazing journey over the course of four short weeks and the speakers today reminded us of all the hard work we put in, but that doesn't mean we have to be sad it's over. We also don't have to say goodbye just yet. It's more of a "see ya later" with hope that someday, somewhere we'll all cross paths again.
We ended our last class with a slideshow presentation of pictures from over the summer. It was really nice to see how the program played out in front of my eyes. When I sit back and think back to when I first entered the class, I can see how much I've grown.
To end the day there was a mandatory talent show which was very entertaining. I absolutely loved all of the acts! Who knew I was surrounded by so many musically inclined people? A few hours after the talent show, "21 Jump Street" was shown on a big inflatable screen in the quad. There was also food served, which was great since I didn't eat dinner.
I'm now sitting in my dorm getting ready to climb into my loft bed in Lippincott 108 for the last time to get a well-deserved 8+ hours of sleep. All day my mind has been exploring the growth that I've seen in myself in just four weeks. What really stuck with me today was how important determination is. Bill and Eli said that in order to distinguish ourselves from the other thousands of people who will be competing for spots in college, we have to be really determined. Not everyone has had the chance to go study at an Ivy league school for a whole month. Like Bill said, we could be sitting at home playing video games like everyone else but instead we chose to dedicate our summer to physics, this already says a lot about us. If I keep going on, my reflection blog will just be a repeat of everything I'm saying now.
A little over a month ago I wrote in my departure blog how the next time you'd hear from me I'd be on the East Coast. Well the same is true this time around, except I'll be returning home.
Goodbye East Coast, it's been fun!