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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Just Trying to Get Ahead

After a long and rainy spring semester, it is a wonderful thing being able to enjoy the bike ride to class every day on the finally green and warm Purdue campus. The weather is one of the many perks of attending Maymester at Purdue. This month I have started my Maymester class, Great American Books, as well as my new job at the Assistive Technology Center here at Purdue.

This is my first time taking summer classes, and being skeptical about losing my summer freedom, I thought back to last summer and my hour long commute to work every day at seven thirty in the morning followed by eight hours of wrestling kids into clothes, hauling them to swim practice, and worst of all, nap time. Realizing that not only would this be a more productive summer by taking summer classes, but that I would also probably have a better time than nannying, I was all for it. Besides that, Purdue campus has relaxed a little bit and taken on a slower pace, and it’s a great feeling after witnessing the hectic campus at finals. Everyone has loosened up a bit, including employees who this past week had their staff appreciation party, displaying their musical talents during karaoke on a loud speaker in the middle of Memorial Mall. It was entertaining to say the least. But on the realistic side of things, summer classes are a great way to catch up on classes, get ahead, or just a great excuse to stay at school over the summer. I’m taking the maximum of nine credit hours this summer and in doing so, I’m able to graduate a semester early. I’m ecstatic!

As I also mentioned, I started my job at the Assistive Technology Center conveniently located centrally on campus in the Stewart Center. It’s a small computer lab that works specifically with students and faculty that need to use alternative technology because of a disability. For the past week I’ve been learning everything from speech dictation software (you speak commands to your computer), a computer mouse you use with your feet, and a one-handed key board. I never knew a job like this existed at Purdue, and I love it. I’m getting great experience in technology as well as occupational therapy, something that will help me in the future. I can’t say enough good things about the program. Just goes to show all of the unexpected thing Purdue can do for you!

--- Colleen Troke

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