Arriving in Nashville was, and I’ll be very honest, mildly terrifying. There I was in a brand new city where I would be living for three weeks, living without any family and without many pre determined friends. I tried my best to set these feelings of uneasiness aside, to enjoy the days I had with my cohort before actually going to Vanderbilt.
|Departure Day, it seems like ages ago|
After those first few days it was time to do what we had been preparing for for months, check in to the Vanderbilt Summer Academy. This whole process was a bit stressful, while Jennifer was there to help us check in and get our room keys, etc., we were pretty quickly directed to the elevators and sent off to settle in to our rooms by ourselves. I distinctly remember stepping off the elevator on the 5th floor, I wasn't greeted by anyone, and struggled to figure out which side of the building my room was on. Eventually I located my room and, after some fiddling with my key, unlocked the door and stepped inside. My roommate was nowhere to be seen, but she was unpacked, and it looked as if she had brought her whole house with her. I thought to myself about how unprepared I was, I didn't bring a laundry basket or throw pillows, but I was going to make due. It turned out that I wasn't alone in my lack of throw pillows, and I soon learned that the reason my roommate had so much stuff because she had driven to VSA. I also learned that I wasn't alone with that nervous feeling, and it pretty quickly went away.
|Some of the many close friends I made at VSA|
Concerning the content of my class, it’s truly amazing to think about how much I learned in such a small amount of time. I'm thankful I had the opportunity to take my class because of how, while it was always fun and interesting, additionally each activity we took part in served a purpose and helped us build a better understanding of either what adaptive engineering is or how it can be applied. We also got to have a lot of hands on experiences, whether that be with soldering or using power tools, I know that the exposure I have gotten to those techniques will be helpful for me later in life.
|Our finished car|
Outside of class, we were almost always participating in other VSA activities. These activities, whether they were arête classes or trivia nights, served as time to (maybe) learn some new skills and always make new friends. I had so many fun experiences with all the new people I’ve met, I’ve formed some very strong friendships through this, and I'm really thankful to the ILC and VSA for bringing us together.
My time at VSA was truly amazing, it made my summer so wonderful and truly unforgettable. I'm so happy I've had this opportunity and that I've gotten to share it with all of you that have been keeping up with these blogs.