Mason sits for a brief interview on the quad. Discussing his Concentration, new friends, musical talent, his many skills, and the new ones he is learning, Mason gets excited for the new experiences ahead of him this summer and beyond.
Could you tell me your name, your pronouns, and if you had to fight 1,000 duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck, which would you choose?
My name is Mason, I go by he/him/his, and if I had to fight 1,000 duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck, I'd go for the thousand little horses, because the huge duck would probably crush me with its beak...and it feels insurmountable to a certain degree.
Would you tell me a little bit about your Concentration?
I'm in Psychology + Neuroscience, and right now, we're learning about diagnostics as it pertains to mental illnesses. We're also getting ready to do a research paper on something of our choice in psychology or neuroscience. I chose the effects of THC on adolescent and adult minds. Now I'm using the Colby College database to kind of find some peer-reviewed essays and articles that can help my hypothesis.
What is your hypothesis?
My hypothesis is that it permanently changes adolescent brain chemistry, and maybe that there's less of a permanent effect on adult minds [from] using THC.
What kinds of things are you doing outside of class?
I visited the bookstore recently and got a couple of books. I got one on how to find more personal peace, one on political science, and a classic one, They Can't Kill Us All — so I'm excited to read those. I've also been hanging out with friends and meeting new people, talking about different experiences, and sort of experiencing college to a certain degree. I think that's what this is all about — trying to figure out if you'd like to go to college and what it would be like.
Are you getting to know people outside your Concentration?
I'm one of three people in my living group from Psych. The rest is in Engineering, so I've been given the opportunity to talk to people outside of my Concentration. I've also been talking to a lot of people in Medical Rotations. It's been kind of cool seeing where people are from. I made a friend from Pakistan, which is cool, because I don't think I've ever met anyone from Pakistan.
Can you tell me a little bit about your hobbies outside of academics?
I play a few different instruments: drums, guitar, bass, and piano. I taught myself bass and drums, and I play bass in my band. We play classic rock and some dream-pop a little bit. I also enjoy teaching myself skills. I taught myself how to make patches for my coat with embroidery. I taught myself how to code a little bit with Python and I made an application. I'm always looking for more things to learn about.
Are you looking forward to anything after the summer?
I'm looking forward to experimenting with sound engineering, because I picked up a lot of that over the pandemic. I like to record my music and I couldn't get access to a studio in COVID. So I forced myself to learn how to use audio software. It's kind of difficult because it's not super intuitive, so I'm excited to get out there and converse with other musicians and make music with them. That's been difficult over the past few years, but I'm excited to go out and simply know converse with other artists, musicians, and new people in general.
Have you found any like-minded souls, musicians, or artists here?
I offered my friend a Monster energy drink from my room and he saw my guitar there. He asked me to play something, so I played a Chet Baker song, and he played a Cannibal Corpse song. So we're both musicians, but with slightly different tastes, I guess.
Is there anything specific you'd like to accomplish with your time here?
I'd like to be able to finish another book. I was never really big into reading before I came here. Then I had to read the prerequisite material for Psych, and I realized that once you find something you're interested in, it's very easy to read a book. I've always been kind of forced by school to read fiction, and it turns out I don't really like fiction. So I'm excited to get into reading and start researching psych on my own a little bit more. I hadn't done that before I came here. Other people came here with actual knowledge, not just the material provided. So I'd like to expand my horizons more.