Lotsa gr8 days

By: Paige Holmes

Recently edited, sorry for the difficult-to-understand, random, and also unrelated-to-my-summer’s-purpose sections: they have been removed!

May 14

Arrival in Philadelphia today! Yabba dabba doo here comes adventure! Also, one of my favorite parts was making friends with some funny people on the shuttle  over to International House Philadelphia.

May 16

First day on the job/internship! I met Peggy and Marie, my supervisors (a Post-doc and a PhD student, respectively) and we organized and set up what projects I’d be helping out with while I’m here. Then I got my very own Penn student card (UPenn’s equivalent to UNC’s Onecard). It’s shiny and beautiful 🙂

Also, I went out to dinner (yummy pizza place) with Chin and he told me all about the MAPP program at Penn (so grateful to hear about it  face-to-face with someone!). I really think it’s something that I will do, or at least look into, after graduation. The MAPP program (Masters in Applied Positive Psychology) is for all ages, from recent grads to CEOs of companies that are looking to apply positive psychology to their company and workplace. You learn all sorts of ways that Pos Psych research can be applied to improve different areas of society. Chin and I also explored UPenn’s campus and he gave me a tour. He is such a cheerful, kind person. He  gladly  showed me and took pictures of me at all the public art displays/ statues. And helped me at the grocery store/carrying grocery bags back to iHouse!

May 18

Tonight was the big, fancy gala at iHouse where all the important, rich people who donate to iHouse come and get a meal and free drinks and dance after getting buzzed on a fancy dancefloor. It was quite interesting and funny.  I volunteered at the gala (which was not for residents) and my job was to greet and be nice to the rich people. The best part of the night though was the after party (for residents only). It went until 2am and  it was so fun to dance and let loose with the iHouse residents and the friends I had met so far (we all acted like we’d known each other for so long and I had met most of them the day before!!), and my favorite part was meeting, becoming close friends within hours, and goofing off with two girls from Pennsylvania, Samantha and Danielle. They were best friends, but that didn’t stop them from treating me like a part of their crew. I was so grateful for this joy-filled night with so many friendly and happy people!!!

May 20

One of the best nights yet! I’m glad I have some free time aside from my internship to enjoy life. I went with Samantha and Adrian to Penn’s  Landing (the pier by the Delaware (I think) river. It was SUCH a nice summer night, the water , scenery, and public art/monuments were beautiful. We had such a good time exploring, conversing, taking crazy photos, and laughing. 🙂

May 22

No luck in finding my cell phone that walked away last night, but  it’s still been a great day. I enjoyed work at PPC (Positive Psych Center) today. I’ve realized these past few days that research can often be preeeetty boring and tedious and repetitive. While transcribing data, doing tons of copying and pasting, and reading through the same stuff over and over again, I wasn’t too excited about it, but I still learned some great stuff and got to read stories in the interviews I looked through, see how surveys and patterns in data  could be laid out  when  transcribing, and practice some of the frequently-done tasks as a researcher. I also completed part of the training to be an IRB member, so that I am able for the next 3 years to participate in ethical research and perhaps even create my own studies that I can send to the IRB review boards to be approved as ethical and with minimal risks. Pretty useful training I must say, especially since as of right now I’m planning to give research a try and see if it’s something I want to do in the long run or at least for some amount of time.


All my love,