Midterm Season

Hello World!

calculus
Studying for calculus

Hope everything is going good for you! Unfortunately that cannot be said for me. Since UC Davis is on the quarter system, and courses typically have two midterms and a final, midterms start this week. And on top of three midterms to take care of, I got my front bike tire stolen and an earache! This is not my best week. But I’ve bought a new tire, my ear is feeling better, and I did pretty well on my first test. I haven’t been sleeping all that much, but that’s what you sign up for when you get an engineering degree!
Anyways, that’s enough complaining, I’ll talk about Hyperloop now.

saw
We’re getting a better saw this year. This one is terrible.

So we still haven’t figured out the rules! SpaceX has not disclosed the date of the competition, and while Elon has hinted through Twitter that the track might have a curve and be 10k long, he has not confirmed it and it seems a bit odd to have a track that large built in less than a year. So we’re preparing for the worst and then we’ll see what happens! We’re ramping up the business team because last year we were the third cheapest pod. This cannot happen this year! We can’t compete with Delft Technical University which is funded by the Netherlands, but we can certainly do better than third cheapest. So I’m going to work with the business team and see how we can improve things. The best teams are the ones with the fewest self built products, which is terrible for teaching young engineers, but I really just want to win.

prototype
Power system prototype

I became power team lead because we needed one, and didn’t have any. But I was never really qualified to be the power team lead because I haven’t taken any of my electrical engineering classes yet — those start Junior year. I got a new power lead a few weeks ago, but I still stayed as co-lead because it was best if we had two. We now have a second new power lead so I am stepping down and becoming a power member instead so I can focus on being president! I’m pretty happy about this, since being president is enough work as it is and there wasn’t any guarantee I’d be able to devote sufficient attention to the power team. And the two new leads are fantastic!

I don’t typically talk about issues involved with being female engineer, but this week there is really something I want to bring up. And that is the restrooms in Bainer Hall. Bainer was built in 1947 as an engineering hall, so it makes sense that there were very few women in the hall when it was first built. There are still not all that many women in the building now, but certainly more than there were in the fifties — I’d say women make up about a quarter to a third of the population on any given day. The problem is, the women’s bathroom has one stall, and the men’s bathroom apparently has three! It’s not a huge deal, but it’s been bugging me for a while and I think I’m going to write to the administration.

I held a meeting with the business lead this Sunday. It was scheduled at ten in Bainer Hall, and the other executives asked if they could come too. But then the business lead asked for it to be moved to 10:30, I said yes but forgot to tell the other leads, my bike tire was stolen so I had to walk which was slow, and I couldn’t get into Bainer because it was locked! I made it at 11:00 which was half an hour late to the business lead and an hour late to the other executives. They were pretty disgruntled! Be we did what we needed and it all worked out. They were sympathetic that my bike tire had been stolen which helped.

May you be ever victorious in your endeavors, especially if you are also a college student on the quarter system and those endeavors are midterms! Unless you’re in one of my classes and the grades are on a curve. Then don’t be victorious.

M.E.W