Week 9: Don't hold your breath too long

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Friday, August 3, 2018


Phoebe Sharp

I knew this would happen. I would get adjusted to this position, establish a routine, and become comfortable. Each weekend we have made a point to try something new in the city and to see a new museum. It’s been so exciting, but it has made this program fly by. We keep saying, “oh, next week...” when we don’t have a next week anymore. Next Saturday, we move out and on to the rest of our summers.

What does that mean for the work we have put into our internships this summer? For many, the research will continue after they turn in their badges. Our offices will keep running without the added clacking of our keyboards writing these blogs. Our projects will become valuable resources of our organizations to use to spread the word of Physics to a whole new audience. Even if only one more person becomes interested in physics because of our efforts, then our hard work this summer will be paid off.

I have really enjoyed the many projects I have worked on. I have gone from designing posters to researching websites. This position at APS Public Outreach provides a lot of flexibility and independence in the kinds of projects that their intern can work on. The ownership of a project is not always guaranteed in an internship, so this is a great opportunity for students to make something their own.

I chose this title because I feel that often students and young adults get stuck in this trap of waiting for the next step in their lives. Often students miss opportunities that had they taken would have altered the trajectory of their future decisions (for better or worse). And I’m not one to make decisions on a whim. So, I end up holding my breath, hoping to not disturb the way the dust will settle in the end any more than I already have. In college, I was involved with many organizations, projects, and external responsibilities that at the end of the school year, I would fall into a slump, because I didn’t have anything else pulling me around. I didn’t do well with free time. And while I am pulling with all of my might to make the transition from this internship into adulthood with an apartment and a job as seamless as I had envisioned, I notice that I am holding my breath again. That is why, if you notice that I sigh quite a bit, it is because my lower lungs need to stretch as well.

In ⅀: These past 9 weeks have been fast and exciting. With so many activities, friends, projects, and tours, it was difficult to find the ability to sit and relax, for me to realize that I don’t have classes starting in a few weeks, and I need to find a job. The reality of this program ending is not friendly. But I’ll save the sappiness for next week.

On the way to work, I saw this man sitting like Einstein at the Einstein memorial.
This is Amanda doing an awesome demo during her presentation at the AAPT Summer Meeting this week.
This is Kristina. She is so intelligent, amazing, and beautiful. I could talk about how great she is all day. After the AAPT conference, Elon, Kristina, and I went to get ice cream and celebrate the ending of her incredible internship.
At Milk Bar (an ice cream place), Kristina is helping Elon take a picture of her milkshake that has a rainbow of sprinkles at the bottom. #doitfortheinsta

Phoebe Sharp