Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Milestone acheived. Ten thousand points!

So...I had my first committee meeting.

It went well. I made one major mistake in completely forgetting to talk about an important aspect. I just...forgot? No idea, got to the end of my talk and thought "oh my god! I didn't talk about that at all! Well, someone is bound to ask me about it"...and then they didn't. Oops. And told me that next time I should probably cover it. Yup, sounds about right.

I stumbled a bit on the questions (can't do mental math. At all.) but most of the things they wanted to know, I had ready answers for. It definitely didn't feel like "they will keep asking questions until you don't know the answer," which is what I was prepared for (and dreading).

And it was fast! Over in 45-50 minutes, I think. I guess partly that's due to the whole first-one-don't-really-have-much-data-yet shortness of my presentation, but one of my committee members even commented on how quickly it went.


As much as I'm pleased I didn't fuck it up, I can't help but regret spending so much time (a week, basically) prepping for the meeting and related requirements, and basically stressing like crazy over this.

And I worry a little that not having weathered the difficult questions now will hurt me later on--like during quals, when it really matters. And my committee members are sympathetic to the project. What happens when I meet someone who isn't? It's enough to make me want to ask them to turn it up a notch. I'll wait and see. Everyone says the second meeting is the hardest, anyway.

On the plus side, instead of feeling drained and miserable about my shortcomings, I'm energized and ready to generate some data! Wooo! Yeahhhhhhhh! *fist pump*


  1. Congrats! Although the week of prep may seem like a waste of time, it will most likely be quite useful in the months ahead. One good thing about committee meetings is that they get you thinking about the big picture and the next steps, plus you inevitably read papers that are the foundation for your project/field that you would not read otherwise.

  2. Oh definitely--I don't regret the whole laying-everything-out-on-paper-and-making-sure-it-all-makes-sense part. I just wish I had been less of a major stress case for that week. Not knowing what to expect + a few horror stories made for one unhappy minion. Next time will be better.