I found the building where my class was in a breeze. The tough part was figuring how to get into the crowded elevators. Luckily, my class' teaching assistant walked in and shouted for the Presidential Powers students to follow her. Only one other student from the crowd joined me as we made our way up a few flights of stairs and into a small room. I was shocked to see that the classroom was smaller than my dorm room. Professor Porwancher sat on one end of the long table while a few other students sad along the other sides of the table. Can you believe that my class has only eight students? It looked more like a small conference room. It's a lot less than Hotel Management because my class had 80 students last year.
|It was a sunny day at Columbia today|
The girl that I walked with was Yasmin, an Indonesian student who currently lives in New York. The majority of the other students seem to be from the East Coast besides one student from Hong Kong. One of my classmate's name is Aristotle and there's a student that's half North Korean. Even in such a small class, there's so many interesting people. We spent the first half of our class introducing ourselves, going over general classroom procedures, and learning general research skills from the librarian. The library has stacks, which is just a term for shelves of books.
During lunch, the program hosted a first day extravaganza for all of the students. I got cotton candy, ice-cream, and a henna tattoo! It was really fun and I ran into my RA too. Time went by way too fast and before I knew it, all eight of my classmates were back in the library to start our research. All of us rigorously searched online to come up with a topic that Professor Porwancher would approve. The research paper has to be around 4,500 words and the topic has to be specific. It sounds like a lot, but it shouldn't be too bad since there are two hours of lab time everyday.
I started to get texts from my cohort when class ended. Everyone wanted to make plans, but we couldn't decide where to go or what to do. At first we were going to the movies, but then we ended up in Times Square! The subway station was incredibly crowded and hot. Since it was hosted by RAs, a large group of students from the program went. We were in awe at all of the lights and people. All of our favorite shops were huge and all we could do was keep walking and taking pictures. I want to visit Times Square when it's New Year's, but if it's this crowded on a Monday night, I can only imagine how crowded it would be then. The only store that Lisa, Monica, Emily and I shopped at was H&M. By the end of the day, my feet hurt so much. All I wanted was to have a seat on the train back. We weren't sure how to get back either, so we had to ask a bunch of people that looked like natives. The person that ended up helping us was a physics intern for Columbia. I was relieved to know that someone else was going to the same place.
My first day of class was awesome. The people in the class are very smart and social. I still have a lot of reading and research to do, so I'll probably have to cut down on all of the field trips. Everything is just happening so fast! I know there's going to be so many more memories in the next three weeks. My henna will fade away in a couple of days, but this trip will always be in my memories.