CUB Blog Post 6/28

Just entering our second week at SSP, I have already learned so much (mostly in the academic sense, but also on a personal level). I love learning a new concept in the morning and applying it later that same day, and after even just one week of this, I have learned about my physical and mental limits. In learning so much and learning it so much more quickly than I ever have been taught before, I’ve needed to rely on the people around me for support, and thankfully, everyone around me at SSP is outstanding.

So far, I’ve found that one of the best parts of SSP is the people in it. Everyone is incredibly helpful, extremely kind, and lots of fun to be around. Whether we are playing games, learning new material, or just working on problem sets together, I always find myself smiling and laughing in our Zoom meetings! However, I find it most interesting that we are a very diverse group of individuals. Coming from New Hampshire and never having traveled much, I have rarely interacted with individuals from different countries and backgrounds, let alone spend at least eight hours a day with them. Even just in the first week, it has been incredible to spend time being with and talking to people from all over the world!

One part of this that can be a little tricky is the difference in time zones. Just within my team of three people, we are in three different time zones that span across about an eight hour difference. I find it really fascinating that we are working together so intensely from such different places in the world. The issue of being in a different time zone hasn’t made a huge impact on our communication (hopefully other teams feel the same way!) because we all stay up late doing our work anyway!

Although the members in our campus are located in different areas of the world, we all have one thing in common: our passion for astrophysics and learning. I have never before encountered this many students that love both astrophysics and expanding their knowledge of it as much as we do at SSP. It is an amazing feeling to be surrounded by others who, just like me, are so interested in what they are learning that they are willing to spend at least eight hours (and usually many many more!) immersing themselves in it each day!

As I start this second week of SSP, it is hard to believe and I am sad to realize that one fifth of the program has already passed. I have loved this first week, and am really looking forward to the next month here!