What University Taught Me: MONEY

Money is green.

Money is mean.

Money is important

and you’ll always really need it.

Even if you don’t agree

sooner or later you will see

that money is a necessity.

I should have learned this rhyme (that I made up on the spot ahaha) when I was younger. Before university, I never had to worry about money. If I ran low on it, I just had to ask my parents. And my parents always had money and my dad had a nice secure job. I never had to strain over dollars and coins to buy a meal. I never had less than twenty dollars in my wallet.  Continue reading “What University Taught Me: MONEY”


What University Taught Me: Studying

I feel like it’s been ages since I last wrote (which, it kind of is but not really at the same time). It’s really a shame because there’s so many things to write about and yet the sloth part of me is like ah but won’t it be better to just waste time on the Internet instead? (The correct answer to that is NO). So I apologize readers for not keeping up with my writing.

I wanted to talk a bit about the curious act that is studying. I know, I know, I said that I’d write about money for my next What University Taught Me post, but I feel like I can write about this more. In fact, rather than declaring my next topic for the series, I’ll just go off what I’m feeling, just to keep readers on their toes~

*Just as a preface, this post will most likely be a bit scatterbrained but let’s just see where this path down the rabbit hole will take us~* Continue reading “What University Taught Me: Studying”

What University Taught Me: Time Management

Welcome to a brand spanking new series! (Which, by the way, why is the phrase called spanking new anyway? *googles etymology* Apparently spanking in the 1660’s meant ‘very big or fine’ usually in reference to horses…hm~) My friend Theo suggested doing a series to force myself to write more. As you guys have probably noticed, I haven’t been diligent in my posting. It’s not because I’m too busy or whatnot, it’s because during my spare time instead of blogging to improving my writing, I’m mindlessly scrolling through Facebook, Instagram, or surfing YouTube. And I’m pretty sure we can unanimously agree how effective those activities are… Continue reading “What University Taught Me: Time Management”

Annoyance: New Professors

Last semester I had a really excellent chemistry professor. In fact, he made me interested and intrigued by chemistry when before I was too busy stressing over it to appreciate it. And my newfound appreciation wasn’t due to spectacular grades or whatnot (because I didn’t get a mark I was fully satisfied with); it was because of my professor’s infectious passion and energy for learning chemistry. He made learning about molecular geometry seem as if it was the most exciting discovery. And he was the type to walk around the entire lecture hall and start every 8:30 morning class with a loud “GOOOOOOOOOD MORNING! It’s a beautiful day to do chemistry, isn’t it?” *regardless the fact that it was pouring outside or a blizzard* Continue reading “Annoyance: New Professors”

From a College Kid’s Perspective

We were supposed to meet at the Burge Marketplace for lunch. According to this plan, I wouldn’t have to step outside since I could use the Daum Tunnel to get to Burge and I would be able to spend minimal time eating so I could work on my essay.

But when I finally emerged from the Daum tunnel, instead of seeing the usual sparse students scattered on the coaches in front of the cashier, I saw massive lines of parents and potential Hawkeyes clogging the lines and hallways.

Welcome to the University of Iowa Open House!- Continue reading “From a College Kid’s Perspective”

Cushions! (for Engineering)

Let’s face it: Engineering has a really strong reputation for being crazy hard and only for smarty-pants. Which, I guess, both are true, but then people always leave out the fact that this major is so incredibly…cushioned!

As in, although the major is incredibly hard and time demanding, there is an amazing, almost overwhelming, amount of support available. I went to visit the tutoring for the first time today and smack dab as soon as you walk in, there’s a huge calendar showing when exam dates are along with respective review session dates. And it gets better from there: the upper classmen in the tutoring sessions had the answers for the engineering problem solving homework (!). (Which, I felt was too close to cheating to explicitly ask for the answers…)

And even now, I’m in the engineering student commons, it’s close to 10:00pm and it doesn’t look like anyone’s leaving anytime soon. And jeepers, even the computer labs are open 24/7…Around me, there’s people in study bunches with laptops out and engineering paper making a pale green layer over the tables. But don’t worry, it’s not like it’s silent in here: people are laughing and chatting, almost as if *gasp!* they’re having fun.

It’s a cool environment, this engineering thing. It’s like everyone’s in the same boat, regardless if you’re an upperclassmen or freshman, everyone had to go through adjusting to the massive homework load, and because of that, upperclassmen are always willing to help. Which, is awesome.

So moral of the story? Engineering is hard, but at least we get lots of cushioning~

Scrambled Eggs

No, this is not a post about food (though, I wish it was…).

When I mean scrambled eggs, I’m referring to the state of my mind right now. Yummy.

So remember when time management was just a nice, fluffy concept during high school? Granted, sometimes it would bonk you on the head, but then it’d back off again and give you some elbow room. But then you get to college…and like my roommate once wisely said, time management becomes a way of life. As in, either you manage your time, or you’ll start drowning in assignments and studying.

And it doesn’t help that there’s all these different topics, either. It’s like we’re lurching from topic to topic, grasping at straws to stuff our heads. And like I said in my previous post, it all comes to show that there’s no such thing as a ‘day off’ in university: everyday is a day to review, preview, or do both.

I just want to press pause and declutter my mind for a while. Can I just run away from it for maybe a day and spend a day making music, blogging, reading, sleeping, and eating some homemade food?

And So, One Month Later…

It’s already been a month?! Apparently so, as our professors remind us that we’re almost a third done with the semester. Which means more exams and of course the lovely thought of that week of finals…(yay).

I have too many random thoughts of what I want to say to put in an orderly paragraph manner, so here’s a list of interesting things and lessons I’ve learned over the past month.

1. In university, you do not own your weekends. Your homework and your studies own your weekends. This is not to say that one can’t enjoy the weekend to study with friends; it just means that the weekend is the prime time to get ahead, take your studies at your own pace, and ultimately lighten your load for the upcoming week. Oh, and to study for that exam on Thursday.

2. To remember anything, IMMEDIATELY review notes after class. Or if there’s a class right after, at least make sure to read over lecture notes before the day is over.

3. Speaking of lecture, PREVIEW PREVIEW PREVIEW…unless you want to sit in class lost and confused.

4. Not all homework was created equally, especially across different majors. Therefore, do not complain if you have an engineering paper, rhetoric letter, chemistry homework, and math assignment when your friend has to just read some chapters in a book.

5. (this is specific to my university) On Sunday, Burge, the dining hall closest to me, is not open for supper…which means, either I order pizza, cross the river to eat at Hillcrest, or eat at the IMU. Fun fact: I didn’t know this until last week…*facepalm*

6. Birds of a feather stick together, and in this case I mean international students. Seriously, though, they are always together speaking in their mother tongue, which I understand but they never seem to branch out to the local students here…

7. There’s a LOT of pre-med students. And majority of Biomedical Engineer undergrads are pre-med…

8. It is possible to have a guy friend. I’ve never had many guy friends (if any, ha) but here it’s different because you study with whoever will help you. I have some guys I often study with or just talk with. And my chamber music partner is a guy and it’s tons of fun talking music or engineering with him. It’s cool because talking with boys is different than with girls and I’m glad that I’m able to have guy friends as well.

9. Apparently, engineers don’t like to write? That made me sad to hear it…But so far, a bit majority of engineers and science students in general don’t like, or even despise writing…

And the best fact of all:



So that’s my list of ten things I learned while at Iowa~ Don’t worry, I’m still also learning education things like engineering problem solving and chemistry. Just these are the things that I remember more distinctly, especially number 10 :).

And so, a month later, here I am. Some times during the day, I just stop as I’m walking in the Pentacrest to admire how blue the sky is or how alive the campus is. My campus is beautiful and there are so many fascinating and smart people here. Sometimes I just have to stop to soak it in that I’ve been this blessed to be here.

Onward to the next month, then!

Oh Hi, Iowa: Moving In

It’s the end of my first full day in Iowa and I’m thoroughly exhausted. But before I delve into what happened today, I’ll recap really quickly how yesterday went.

In the morning, my family attended the All Nations Baptist Church. It was interesting because rather than being a Korean church that was adjoined to an English church, it was the reverse. And it was actually All Nations; okay, the majority was still Korean, but there were also some African people and French people in the congregation. That was the first thumbs up for me.

After the service, I went to the Bible study and met the college group. They were all goofy but serious when it came to faith, which was another big thing for me. I can see myself in the group and growing with them. And it’ll be nice to have Christianmentors/unis/oppas~

Then there was lunch. The lunches at church will become my weekly (hopefully not only once a week :P) source of Korean food, so yay for that~ During the meal, I met a biomed professor and three other girls who were going to be freshmen at Iowa. It was a relief to meet some other students and we quickly exchanged phone numbers and whatnot. It was a bit weird for me asking for numbers because I didn’t do that much before? It felt so…cliche and I wanted to start signing the Carly Rae Jepson song because it seemed so surreal in a way XD.

Afterwards, it was time to move in. There weren’t too many people moving in since I was doing the early move-in option, so that was nice. The room surpassed my expectations. Then again, my expectations weren’t really high because I was expecting really dumpy rooms with enough space to only sleep. The only complaint I have about my room is that the beds are too close to the ceiling. I’ve already bonked my head several times…

Then I met my roommate Erin. That was another surreal experience because we’ve been talking together almost as soon as we found out that we were roommates, but seeing her in person was like whoa, okay so this is actually happening. My family went out for supper with Erin, then it was time to go.

There were no tears shed. Not because I didn’t care or whatnot, but like I said in a previous post, I know that distance won’t change the basic facts about my family. No matter how many miles are between us, they’re still my family. They still love me and I’m still related to them, even if I move farther away. So it’s not like I don’t love them or I just wanted to be away, it’s just that I know that nothing will fundamentally change because I’m at Iowa. Yes, I will change and mature (so they say) but I’m still their daughter/sister.

When I woke up today, I successfully did not bonk my head on the ceiling. Surprisingly, I wasn’t confused when I woke up. I knew that I was at Iowa and I took it all in pretty good stride. It was kind of weird though turning my alarm off, because back at home I’d just have to walk a bit to turn it off, but now I had to climb down from my bed to turn it off. Which, I suppose is good because it wakes me up.

Erin and I decided to explore the campus today and find where we’d have our classes. So we walked all over the East side of campus, and were pleased to find that the classes are all pretty close to Daum (our residential hall). Then lunch, then meeting new people and walking around a bit more with our newfound friends, and now I’m here falling asleep at the keys.

At one point, we just went from room to room introducing ourselves and people on our floor seem friendly, so that’s always good. It’ll be interesting how our relationships will grow as classes start. It’s also nice meeting people here because we’re all in the same boat: no one knows anyone else and we all have clean slates. So we’re all more eager to make connections and not be alone~

But when I think of it, I don’t really feel like I’m at university yet. It feels more like some nice week-long summer camp. It hasn’t hit me yet that this will be my new home, and I don’t think it will for a while. I don’t know if I’ll get homesick yet, because I’ve been okay so far, but then again it’s only day 2. We’ll have to see, I suppose~

Oh, and here’s some pictures of my dorm if anyone’s interested X)

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