Inspired

Education – The Noble Pursuit

I am a firm believer that the pursuit of education is admirable and that helping educate others is one of the most noble things you can do with your time. I believe that if everyone were educated on the many problems of this world, there would be fewer problems. If everyone was educated about finances, almost no one would be in debt (except those who recently went to college). If everyone was educated about the affects of overpopulation, more people would adopt children rather than add to the current population. If everyone had a basic knowledge of how the world works, we’d have more people producing solutions than problems.

I hold people/groups like Neil deGrasse Tyson, Bill Nye, and ASAP Science in the highest regard because they are spending their time educating the general public on a variety of topics. In addition, Dr. Tyson is doing what he can to encourage students to pursue science and math related fields.

When I was at Mississippi State University, a program was started with the purpose of getting middle school girls interested in careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics). Fantastic! I had never heard of engineering until I was looking to colleges, and even when I picked Civil Engineering as my major, I still had NO idea what it was. It just sounded cool. This program brought girls who were interested in math and science to MSU one Saturday a month for four months in the spring semester. Female engineering students, including myself, volunteered to help out on these Saturdays. We planned different activities that thought them about the different engineering majors. We taught them basic information about how a plane flies, how water is treated, and how to make lip gloss. We had girls wanting to be rocket scientists, doctors, and everything in between! It was awesome.

I also believe in giving back to the community. That program, called I AM GIRL, was my favorite volunteering experience at college. Now that I’m graduated and moved away, my favorite way to volunteer is by tutoring GED prep to adults who wish to get their GED. The local community college offers free GED classes to adults, so I called and asked if they could use a volunteer tutor, and they said yes! Getting a GED is a very difficult thing to do, and I applauded anyone and everyone who seeks to get theirs. I want to help in any way I can. Probably my favorite part of GED tutoring is when a student I have been helping passes one of the sections of the test. It’s a great feeling.

As always, I’d love to hear [read] any thoughts, observations, ideas, personal stories, etc, that you’d like to share. What are some ways you like to volunteer? Do you agree or disagree that education is the key to changing the world for the better? Why? What are some other worthy pursuits that you believe in?

Engineering

Work

I was going to talk about a different topic, but work has been bringing me down lately, so I want to talk about that.

Mostly it’s been this past week, but it’s not the first time I’ve felt like this. Things are slow. At least for me. Our CAD guy is overloaded and I can’t really help because all I learned how to do in school was draw lines and make shapes and make everything centered and line up correctly. He would have to take time that he doesn’t have to show me how to do something that he could do in the time he was showing me how to do it. Lame. The other engineers have their own things going on and don’t really have much for me. As a result, I have put way more time that I’d like on General Admin. Specifically this week but there was also a day last week that had about 7 hours on general admin.

I feel useless. It’s a really sucky feeling because I like to do stuff and feel accomplished. As long as I have something to do, even if it’s just scanning papers and saving them in the right location so the company can go paperless, I will work hard at it. I will show up early, I will work diligently, and I will be in a good mood. Today, I was 20 minutes late for work. Why even come to work? – I thought. It’s not like I’m doing anything. I worked on our company website for two days straight. Which looks fantastic, but I’d much rather be doing something more meaningful. Even when I do get work, if I don’t understand what it is or how it’s benefiting anything, I still feel pretty useless. I’ve been starting to wonder why I was even hired. This useless feeling has made me feel very apathetic toward this job and a little depressed in general. I don’t feel like a useful member of society. I’m just sitting around fiddling on the internet with this website until time to go home. It’s awful. I’d rather be outside with the survey crew or do some field investigation or SOMETHING.

On top of that, I haven’t heard back from the college about volunteering to be a GED tutor. The Sims 4 just came out, which is fun and exciting. But it’s hard to enjoy playing games when I don’t feel like I get anything accomplished during the work day, so I don’t feel like I deserve to relax and play games in the evenings. This cycle is going to have to stop soon because I feel like I’m spiraling down into a depression.

Maybe I should have held out for a different job. Although I do like the small office vibe and the perks that come with it, like not having any strict rules. And the work we do is pretty important to society because it’s mostly city/county work. For example, we’re currently trying to find the problem in once of the city’s sewer system to stop it from spilling over. We’ve done parks, sidewalks, apartments, airport strips, roadwork, and utility work. Maybe if I look at all the ways we’re helping the community, I can feel like I’m part of it. I’m just having trouble feeling it. Maybe because I’ve always wanted to have a bigger impact, and these are small jobs.

I have been thinking about doing something with The Green Program. If you’ve never heard of them, look them up. I’m an alum. My fourth year in college I spent Spring Break in Costa Rica learning about different types of green energy hands on. It was a wonderful, life-affecting experience. I’d love to be a bigger part in something like that. Maybe after working here a while I’ll look into that.

I’m hoping that next week will be busier for me and I wont’ be feeling so down in the dumps. This happens anytime it’s slow, but this is the worse it’s been. I usually feel better when I have a lot going on at work because I go home feeling accomplished and to me, that’s one of the best feelings in the world.

As always, I’d love to hear [read] any thoughts, observations, ideas, personal stories, etc, that you’d like to share. 🙂