The start of another semester

On Tuesday I start my second semester at MIT. Overall, it is shaping up to be a very difficult semester; I am registered for two classes and I will be listening (the MIT term for auditing) to another. In addition to this, I am going to attend two conferences and try to go to Vegas for about a week. If I survive this semester with two A’s, I will be able to do anything short of running a marathon.

So anyway, I wanted to record what classes I am taking this semester:

The course I am auditing is: 6.S080. As a fun fact, everything at MIT is done numbered, even their classes. Course 6 means electrical engineering, whereas I am course 2, mechanical engineering. But I digress, this course is: “Special Subject in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.” The course website can be found here: The course itself has to do with computational prediction of mechanical modeling. It is taught by Chuck Hoberman who made my favorite toy as a child:

I am really excited to take this course even if I am only auditing it, hopefully it will teach me a  better methodology for predicting mechanical designs. All in all, it should be a very rewarding course, I may switch it to P/F to make myself actually work in the course.

The most challenging course I will be taking is 2.55, Advanced Heat and Mass Transfer. This course I am taking principally because the vast majority of mechanical engineering has to do with the transfer of heat or mass. Just think how often you put on a jacket during the day or start your car: both governed by the principles of Heat Transfer. It has nothing to do with the line of research I am doing, but it can add to my future career aspirations. I am told it is the second hardest course offered in Mechanical Engineering (right after 2.25, Fluid Mechanics which I took last semester), so I am in for a fun ride. This course is also a prerequisite for the qualification exams which I plan on taking next January.

And last but not least is 2.37, Fundamentals of Nanoengineering. Again, this is a quals course that I am taking primarily to prepare for those exams in January. This course has to do with all the different methods of creating nanostructured surfaces and MEMS systems. I am told this course is completely do-able and should be easy to get an A in. *knocks on wood*

So that is that. After this semester, I will be 2/3 of the way done with my SM degree and will have to start worrying about staying for the PhD qualification exams. I will update this blog as much as possible as this wild semester has its way with me.

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