So I was helping to peer advise an incoming freshman to USP this year who happens to want to go to Waseda University for the same programme I’m on and unfortunately, studies in the Faculty of Science in NUS. Which happens to be one of the most inflexible and rigid faculties when it comes to classes, and where schedules and module mapping nearly impossible to small liberal arts colleges that really fit the arts side more than being a balance.
And then she asked “how did you do it, really? how did you manage to finish all you did in the last two years?” I gave her the quick answer: “I don’t know, really, I just kept going on.”
But that’s not the truth. The truth is, I only made it so far on the determination and grit that I found somewhere. Reaching this point though, required the support of the friends and family that kept me going. So this is where I sort of think about what I’ve done here in the midway point of my degree (more or less).
Crazy plans like what I am doing always begin with an idea. They start small, but they get nurtured by the friends around you. For this, I have Min Xun, Benjamin Choi and a whole host of others to thank. I really still owe it to her: “do you think they’d let me double major with a double degree?”; “well if you don’t try, you won’t know right?” and then there’s Ben’s sagely advice when I was killing myself academically and the constant support. All the Nocturna folks here helped a ton too: suppers and company, laughs and cheers. Scoldings when I needed them, and for making me feel like I had something to come back to other than studying each day in the RC. My #06-100 suitemates too: Justin, Brian, Aaron, Jianyi, Hewlett, Wu Chao, Jin Hui (and yes Justin, your putting up with my idiosyncrasies day in day out is greatly appreciated). The honorary members too: Shona, Ming Ting, Gwen and Laura. You guys were the best company I could have asked for.
I think a special mention has to go out to the USP Life Sciences folks, and the NUS Science Crusade girls who were my lecture buddies for the first three semesters. Especially in the crucial Year 2 Semester 1, where I had horrible 8 hour lecture days that were consecutive. I really appreciate how you all: Edna, Stella, Meredith, Tasneem, Chester, Geelyn, Jie Min, took turns bringing me coffee and food so I could spend the 25 minute breaks in between lectures lying down on chairs in the lecture theatre instead to catch up on sleep.
So yeah, I look back now: how did I do it? I did it with the help of my friends. Or to borrow a turn of phrase from the The Beatles: “I get by with a little help from my friends”. Thanks, guys.