You’re in luck. There will be a quadruple-header of blog entries (four in four days). This is the opening post.
Almost a year ago, I posted a blog entry discussing some of my short-term goals. So this is the second post in a possible series of entries that delineate objectives I set for myself. In the previously linked entry, I mentioned that the goals were for the fall 2011 semester only, but since I didn’t make another set of goals for the spring, I’ll just extend those 18 to encapsulate the spring 2012 semester and the following summer. In that respect, I completed points number 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 16, 17, and 18.
But now, I want to be more serious. What are some of the five most important objectives I hope to achieve from now until the end of the summer of 2013? I’ve already mentioned blogging more, so I won’t say it again. But I did come up with …
1. Maintain a better sleeping schedule
My sophomore year’s sleeping schedule was shambolic. One night, I’d go to sleep at midnight. Then it would be 4:00 AM the following night, then back to midnight, and the madness continued. Too often, I let my work dictate how much I slept. This even caused me to uncharacteristically miss several classes by oversleeping. So not only do I want my schedule to be stable, I also want to shift it back a few hours so I can comfortably wake up at 6:00 or 7:00 AM consistently. Since my earliest class on any day of the week is at 9:55 AM, I should have ample time to study, work, or blog in the morning.
2. Study for the Graduate Record Examinations
This is fairly straightforward. I’ll take the general GRE towards the end of my junior year, and I’ll probably take the computer science GRE subject test in the fall 2013 semester. With the exception of midterms and finals periods, I want to dedicate at least 4 hours per week to this task. The aim is to get a high enough GRE score so that my application is not immediately thrown out the window for the top computer science graduate programs. I’ve actually been studying a little this past summer by reviewing some GRE and even SAT vocabulary. Does anyone have additional recommendations for me?
3. Maintain a 3-day workout week
Since the start of November 2011, I’ve consistently been weight training about three days a week, with rare exceptions (they’re justified, trust me on this). Exercises include the squat, hang clean, bench press, pull ups, push ups, core circuits, leg press, calf press, and deadlifts. My strength has notably improved, and I’ve kept my body weight at around 150 pounds while avoiding any of the “Freshmen 15.” Why couldn’t I have maintained this level of dedication in high school?
4. Pick better situations to socialize
I’ve already discussed at length why I do not socialize well in certain situations. I need to strike a balance between avoiding them without giving the impression that I’m too reclusive. Related to that, I want to find ways to create more one-on-one conversations located in quiet environments. I don’t think I’ve done this as well as I could have in the past two years — but I have ideas to rectify that.
5. Engage in more computer science research
The final goal here relates both to my ongoing project of text simplification and what I hope to engage in the following summer. (I don’t think I can realistically take part in an entirely new research project during the academic year, with classes and my work-study teaching assistant duties.) My Bard College research team is still running some experiments, and I’ll be in touch with them to hopefully write up our results. I also want to focus on REU applications for the summer of 2013. I could work solo with a Williams faculty member over that summer, but collaborating on a project with a group of three or four researchers is much more compelling to me. I’ll be in touch with the Williams faculty nonetheless. The preliminary goal is to find a project in the area of artificial intelligence.
That’s all for now. It’s time for me to do them….