Yes, yes, I am an engineering student. When I give tours, I invariably get questions about my life or lack there of. Being an engineering student is hard no matter what university you attend. You do the work because you love it, not because its easy. At the University of Rochester you learn to be a good engineer the only way possible by working at, and through, tough problems. The University has a lot of libraries because they all get used.
Thankfully I’m not just an engineer and I don’t think anyone at the University would say they are just a student. I happen to enjoy getting up at 5:30 am every day. As a member of UR’s crew team, I have the privilege of taking part in the annual ritual of spring training. Every year during spring break I get to lay on the beaches of Miami, FL. Don’t be too jealous, because before the beach is five long hours of intense rowing.
Don’t misunderstand me. I love to row. That title is there for a reason. Spring break saves my life every year. Getting back on the water after a winter full of practices on the ergometer is like Christmas in March except it’s in Miami and doesn’t leave pine needles everywhere, so its even better. The whole team, as a whole, remembers why we put so much into our sport. There’s that one moment when you can see it in everyone’s eyes: Oh yeah, I do this because its awesome.
So spring break saves my life every year, and will every year. I put everything into my work because its what I love, because its what I want to do, because its what I’m passionate about. It just so happens that I have something else that I love and am passionate about, and it just so happens I get to lay on the beach with that something else as well.