This has been my first week at Northwestern University. I have a new commute, a new office, new responsibilities and definitely a new perspective on academic science.
Switching institutions is stressful, intimidating and inconvenient. But it is also bittersweet. I "grew up" as a scientist at the University of Chicago and therefore feel like much of who am I am is tied to my time there. Coming to the realization that a change was needed for me to expand my scientific career further was surprising, but then again academic life is one that involves a lot of moves.
One perk that I had not fully appreciated was the "new kid of the block" phenomenon. This must be what it feels like to be the popular kid in high school (I have no personal experience with this!). Everyone wants to hang out with you, get to know you better, discuss ideas. It is very invigorating and opens up whole new avenues of thought and science.
I'm lucky to live in a city with so many academic options. My career move has meant that I did not have to uproot my family. My downtown location means I can still hang out with my U of C friends. So here's to greener grass, new pastures and a brand new stage in my academic career.
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