The semester ended *cue long sigh of relief*! What a semester it was!!! I got a lot accomplished, and finished all of my classes (I TOOK MY LAST FINAL EXAM EVER), so now I get to work on writing. This is what they refer to as the ‘home stretch,’ as I am planning to graduate in a year. I took a writing course this past semester taught by my advisor. I was able to write up one of my dissertation research studies, and submit it for publication. This is a major milestone for any young scientist. This means that I developed a question, figured out how to answer it, answered it, determine why it all happened, and then wrote it up! Lots of time went into that one document... years of my life!
While I have been an author on several publications, this will be my first time as ‘first author.’ This means that you did most of the work, you ran the analysis, you wrote the story… I am keeping my fingers crossed that my hard work and dedication paid off, and that the reviewers find my work valid and important. There are going to be two expert scientists who will anonymously review my paper. They can choose to accept it for publication (with edits) or reject it. Since I don’t know who they are, and they probably don’t know who I am, they can be honest about everything. Hopefully, they give great feedback, and help make the paper as strong as it can be. Naturally, I am a bit nervous about going into the shark’s tank!
On a weekend this December, I went to Chinatown in Chicago. What a site!!! I had been to Chinatowns before… (In fact, some of my favorite memories involve Chinatowns from Honolulu to Philly to D.C.) However, Chicago’s Chinatown has one of the most impressive collections of American ginseng. Barrel after barrel of roots… all sizes and shapes, in store after store. There wasn’t just roots, mind you, but teas, soaps, candies, etc. I can only imagine the scale of all of the ginseng roots that have been harvested worldwide. I purchased a small bar of soap and a package of candy to use for outreach displays. The candy has that distinct ‘ginseng tang’ which does not lend itself well to a sugary sweet.
I hope you all have a lovely holiday season! I will be busy working on a very important fellowship application, one of my research chapters, and also, doing some outreach work! I also managed to keep doing ginseng related art projects. It is a busy time of the year, but I can’t imagine life any other way!
Jessica B. Turner's