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My First Week at CMOP - One Mini-Project Completed!

My first week at CMOP was very exciting.  Right off the bat I was given the task to wrap up a project that a graduate student, Amanda Mather, had been working on.  My senior investigator, Dr. Paul Tratnyek, was expecting usable data and a short write-up on my results by the end of the week.  The results were to be given to a local company who built the water purification system I was working on. 

At first, I was nervous about familiarizing myself with the lab and equipment I would be using.  However, through the help given to me by Amanda and Dr. Tratnyek and the kindness of other graduate students, I felt right at home and confident on how to proceed with the project.  By Wednesday I was already running experiments and gathering data.  By Friday afternoon I handed the results over.

Even though there was a lot to do this first week, it was just the right amount of work to keep my mind off of being away from friends and my girlfriend.  Not only that, but it kept me interested in going to work since there was never a dull moment and I was doing something I enjoyed.  It reassured me that I am on the right track to one day holding a job where I get to do hands-on research.

Outside of working in the lab, I had a ton of fun exploring Portland.  At first it took longer than expected to get to Portland until I discovered that there's a bus that gets you to the local light rail station.  From there it's a quick ride into Portland.  There's so much to do and see (and eat!) in Portland that I don't think there's any way I'll be able to exhaust activities in 10 weeks.  In fact, I don't think it's ever possible to run of of things to do around here.

I had a great first week at CMOP and am excited that I get to be here for 10 weeks!