Welcome back! Without further ado, let the spring semester of 2014 commence. But before we get to the details of this semester, I wanted to speak briefly to my amazing winter break. I will write an entire blog about my vacation next week, but, for now, let the above header photo serve as my first hint. After a great break, I hit the ground running once back in Los Angeles, emerging as one of USC’s Hillel’s newest leaders.
At the end of last semester, Sam Fein, the new president of Hillel and my good friends, asked me to join him in reforming USC Hillel’s student board, which had been inactive for over two years. USC Hillel aims to engage all of USC’s Jewish students of all backgrounds in both religious and secular programming, such as Shabbat dinner and basketball viewing parties. As the new vice president of student engagement, I am now tasked with revitalizing Hillel’s social scene and community atmosphere. From promoting Shabbat dinners to planning challah baking nights, I hope to increase attendance at Hillel events while introducing inactive Jewish students to USC’s Jewish community. In the next two weeks, I will be leading a beach excursion to Dockweiler Beach, where the Hillel board will bond to the smell of roasting marshmallows over a campfire. Overall though, I am most excited for the first annual Hillel spring dance, which I will be planning and executing. The dance will take place at an off-campus venue, and the Jewish communities of USC, UCLA, and Occidental colleges will be invited to attend. Hopefully, over 500 Jewish students will attend, allowing three of Southern California’s largest collegiate Jewish communities to meet and intermingle.
On an academic note, I am taking five classes this semester for a total of seventeen units. So far, the class I have enjoyed the most is Physics 153: Optics and Modern Physics. First off, Physics 153 will be my last semester of physics ever, which is both exciting and disappointing. Luckily, I will end my physics career with a topic I truly love to learn about, modern physics. Ever since watching my first episode of Star Trek, I have been obsessed with warp drive and its relationship with Einstein’s general theory of relativity. In my opinion, the next generation of interstellar propulsion will be founded upon the theory of relativity, and, as an astronautical engineering major, I am looking forward to applying modern physics to my studies in space travel. Most importantly, my professor for Physics 153, Professor Kalia, is one of the best professors in the department. Professor Kalia has taken abstract concepts, such as the theory of relativity, and transformed them into interesting, and understandable, thought experiments. Thanks to Professor Kalia and the unique coursework, I go to Physics 153 ready and eager to take on a new challenging topic.
I really am looking forward to a great semester of class and extracurriculars. Throughout the semester, be sure to read more about my Viterbi Life! Next week, tune in to hear about my awesome vacation over winter break.
Second Hint: I travelled to the largest country on the European peninsula with the largest number of countries.