David from the Psychology + Neuroscience Concentration sits to discuss his favorite EXPLO moments (so far). Having already conquered one session in Surgical Interventions, he is well-equipped for the final days of Session Two, and is relaxed in conversation about the experiences he's shared with friends over the last several weeks.
Let's start with your name and Concentration.
My name is David. I'm in Psych + Neuroscience, and last session I was in Surgical Interventions + Bioengineering.
What’s the most exciting thing you’ve experienced this summer?
We did a lot of dissections, and they were very cool. The sheep brain dissection in Psych was probably my favorite though.
What about these two Concentrations drew you to them?
I really like scientific research. That's my anticipated career path. So, I'm mostly interested in the molecular pathways of our generation, and molecular biology type things, like biomimicry, which is very cool...and just the general applications of that science. It's like that kind of stuff. The applications in medicine and bioengineering involve a lot of problem solving which I really like. Then neuroscience is sort of my favorite thing.
Have you done a lot in your two sessions here this summer?
I've been making friends...there were bonfires, so I've been burning lots of marshmallows to eat. It's the easiest way to cook. Just set them on fire and then blow them out and then they're ready to be eaten. But yeah, I guess I've just been hanging out with friends. I've made a lot of new friends here. Everyone's been very nice. And when I'm at home, when I switch schools, it's hard for me to make friends most of the time — so it's really nice to be able to make a lot of friends very quickly here.
What are your favorite memories from the summer?
I made a lot of really good friends here. I have a Discord with kids I met in Session One, and it's very active. My notifications are off right now, because otherwise, I would be getting a lot of notifications from it. So that was a big thing.
The Concentrations have been really fun. I've learned a lot. It's also been an experience that's been very different from school. At school I can learn a lot, but it's at the expense of sleeping and doing other things, and this is very much an environment where you can learn a lot without having that very high pressure atmosphere, which has been really fun. And that's been a new thing. But it's been really cool. We've done a lot of really cool stuff in class.
Have you enjoyed the area?
We get lots of sirens in my neighborhood. I live between the fire station and hospital — we don't live near a police station, but there are a lot of police cars. So we get a lot of sirens all the time, and it's very loud. But we don't have that kind of noise here. It's very quiet in a very nice way.
Can you tell me your thoughts on this pre-college experience curated for students like you?
It's really cool to be on a campus. It's fun to wander around. When I look at college things, a lot of it is from an academic standpoint. Having freedom feels good and it helps me feel more independent.
And I've learned a lot in the courses, and definitely the work is really interesting. That's been very cool, but I think, surely the most valuable part of it is meeting all the people here. All the teachers and the guest speakers. They always have really interesting things to say about what they do and how they got there. And like I've learned a lot about how to do work sustainably and not burn out — which is something that I didn't learn in high school.