Jumping Through Hoops

I was always taught that if I didn’t have anything nice to say, I shouldn’t say anything at all. So if you’re wondering why I haven’t posted in so long, that’s a hint. That and I’ve been too busy to give even thirty seconds of thought to a blog post. I literally have not turned on my TV since I moved back home from my summer internship. Not once. I hope it still works.

But I wanted to write something so you all wouldn’t think I’d died or gone off the deep end. Okay, the jury is still out on the latter. So, yeah. It’s been a little rough this semester. I knew this one would be a doozy. I scheduled it this way so my final semester might be a little less intense. I hope that pans out.

This needs to be true.

This needs to be true.

I’ve been in school now for almost five years. Every semester, including summers. To say I’m ready to be finished with all this doesn’t even come close to expressing my feelings. The phrase “jumping through the hoops” comes to my mind almost every day lately. I get it. That’s what school is. Go through the process. Complete the busy work. Juggle a million things at once because it’ll teach us “kids” how to be professionals and how to deal with real-world stress. Except, no. It won’t. It doesn’t. Okay, I really have no idea. Maybe that kind of hoop-jumping is helpful for some students. I don’t know. But I’ve been out in the “real world” for ten years and I’ve never experienced the level of stress and frustration that is required to get through a semester of full-time engineering courses. And, frankly, I’m really tired of jumping through the hoops. I know how to write a professional paper. I know how to give a presentation. I know how to go through an orderly concept/analysis/execute process. I know how to work on a team. I’ve done all these things. I can do them, and pretty well at that.


What I do need to learn are the last couple of hardcore engineering topics: heat transfer, controls and a few electives in my area of interest: energy. Those are the classes where I’d prefer to focus my attention without the distraction of all the hoop-jumping required from other, (in my opinion) less necessary classes. I’m actually really enjoying my thermal systems class. After getting through almost the entire engineering curriculum, this is the first class where a professor has explained how a pump literally works, showed diagrams of the interior parts and taught us how to choose an appropriate pump size based on piping and valve/fitting pressure losses. This is an elective. This class isn’t even required. Sigh. But I digress.

So, school isn’t amazing. But being able to focus on school without the distraction of a full-time job is excellent and I don’t regret that choice one bit. Wearing sweatshirts and yoga pants to school is fabulous. Best of all winter break this year is a solid four weeks long, rather than the usual three. Why? I have no idea. And I don’t care! All that matters is that I’ll be spending most of it in sweatpants on my couch drinking wine and reading books. I’m also scheduling a haircut, a pedicure and a massage all on the same day. It’s going to be epic.


4 thoughts on “Jumping Through Hoops

  1. I hope that you tell the Thermal Systems prof that you appreciate finally seeing some useful and practical information presented in an understandable manner. The Dept needs more of that. At least its one bright spot on an otherwise dark semester. But it sounds like it may be getting a bit brighter for you.

  2. I am SO reserving a day of that epic Xmas break. Yeah! Sorry about all the hoops–what a slog. And I think your dad’s idea is wonderful.

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