Friday, August 3, 2018By:
This week further affirmed my desire to become a teacher and provided me some assurance being a double minority in physics. I did a lot of networking and learned a lot about efforts to make physics teaching the best it can be!
On Sunday Sarah and her friend, Amanda, Krystina, and I participated in a Lab Escape at the 2018 AAPT Summer Meeting. While waiting in an unusually cozy lounge for the game to start I met a women from Elizabeth City, NC. It was nice to connect with someone else from my state and I also learned she was teaching 5th grade math and attending graduate school for applied mathematics which is similar to what I’d like to do after I graduate.
Monday night I got the opportunity meet up with some of the members of AAWiP (African American Women in Physics). It was honestly a dream come true. Even though it was pouring down rain and I forgot my rainboots and umbrella I was more than determined to make it to the restaurant. We ended up going to a small, Panamanian hole-in-the-wall called Esencias Panamenas. The food was fabulous and reminded me of my Jamaican family’s get-togethers. We had more fried plantains than I’ve ever seen at one time, codfish cakes that were almost the size of burgers, and vegetarian carimañolas (yuca fritters). I also got an interesting drink called chicheme frío (hominy, milk, and spices).
It was so rewarding to meet so many beautiful black women physicists in one place. I always knew they were out there but to actually meet them in-person, learn their stories and shared experiences, was an honor. A couple of them were at the same stages in their lives as I was and most of them were exactly where I hope to be in the near-future. I hope we can stay in touch and meet up again soon!
I also enjoyed the AAPT Meeting as well. The Teacher’s Lounges were especially fun, we basically tried out a bunch of cool demo’s called “DigiKits.” It essentially was a bunch of K-12 teachers just hanging out and having some creative fun. It was a good mix of people, from seasoned teachers to aspiring ones.
I also got the chance to hear some inspirational advice from Dr. Shirley Malcom, currently the Head of Education and Human Resources Programs at the AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) and recipient of 16 honorary degrees. She was an eloquent speaker whose answers to the panel’s questions were thoughtful and very quotable.
My two main projects for this internship (YouTube video and poster design) are pretty much finished at this point so I’m currently working on my final presentation for next Friday. I’m excited for my final weekend in DC, starting with my first EDM concert tonight at Echostage! Stay tuned for my final post next week to see how it went!