Thursday, June 24, 2010

Our First Quiz

Over the past two days I have had to learn the names of 22 of my classmates, minus the three of them that I know from the Ivy League Connection, for a quiz. Studying for this quiz has helped us get to know each other. Before our lecture we would sit around and say our names. Then one person would say everyone's name and then the next person would say everyone's name. It was really cool because it was a way that we could all be in the same positions.

In the actual class we did a lab that tested my ability to follow directions. In this experiment, we were asked to isolate DNA from E. coli bacteria that was in a liquid. It was a 20 step lab that I managed to get to the 17th step and then I messed up. We broke the E. coli cells open and isolated the DNA. The tube had a pellet of material at the bottom and liquid at the top. The liquid contained the DNA and the pellet contained everything else that is in a cell. Instead of taking the pellet out, I took the liquid out. I ended up ruining my whole experiment and I felt really bad because I was the last one in the room and the professor and the TA were the only ones left. I felt pressured to get the work done so that they could go or do whatever they needed to do, even though they were happy that I was taking my time and asking questions.

In the second half of the class we discussed what was happening to the DNA while we were putting it in the chemicals and through the centrifuge. I understood what she taught but I was intrigued about the questions she left up to us. She would ask us questions about what would happen if we did not cool the DNA down after it’s been put through the heat bath or what would happen if we added more or less of a chemical or we gave it a longer period of time to break down.

We are also finding out how to make the cafeteria food better by mixing it together and drenching it in sauces. Yesterday night for dinner they served us shredded steaks and the meat was dry so I poured A1 sauce all over it. It made it taste a whole lot better. I never realized what one could create when given simple ingredients.

1 comment:

  1. Megan,

    1) Although it's better not to make mistakes, it's often through our mistakes that we learn the most (the exception is with some government officials). Of course everyone would rather that you had not erred after the 17th step but considering what you went through because of it, what are the chances that you're going to make the same mistake over again?

    2) Of course, still living at home and not being a male precludes you from the bachelor status but, as someone who has been a bachelor for way too many years I can write about the way we think. Had you been a bachelor like me, you would have learned WAAAY long ago of the value of gravies and sauces to make what you've fixed palatable. That may be why we barbecue so much--we can drown our mistakes in barbecue sauce.

    3) I'd love for all of our Brownies to tell us more about the food issue. We're getting mixed reports and what you tell us is helpful. If we have examples of the food issues we can bring this up with Brown officials and perhaps affect changes in the future. One of my fortés is writing those kinds of letters that can actually bring about change. Either that or I'm met with restraining orders. :-)

    On the food issue we sometimes have regional differences but I suspect that this is not the case. If you were in the south you might see everything fried and being from California that might disgust us. Up in Minnesota you might see a lot of Scandinavian food and of course in Texas you see a lot of TexMex food full of green and red peppers. From what you all have written, though, this sis a problem in choices and preparation. Let us know, won't you?