I had my defense yesterday at 9:45 am. These past few weeks have been extremely nerve-wracking and sleep deprived, and I was happy and terrified to finally see the big day come.
After a fairly sleepless Tuesday night, I headed to campus early to set up and run through my slides one last time.
Most students bring a few goodies for the people who come to watch their defense presentation. I made these chemistry cookies on Tuesday night! Chocolate cookies in the shapes of beakers, test tubes, and Erlenmeyer flasks!
I also made blueberry and apple cinnamon muffins since I had a morning defense. The pink cheetah muffin wrappers fit in perfectly with my pink-and-gray-jungle theme I had going on.
You can see from my slides that I had pink and gray colors and used gray and white zebra to spice up the title slide, as well as section dividing/transition slides and the “Questions” slide.
I gave my presentation, which last about an hour, then took questions from anyone who came to watch my presentation that wasn’t on my graduate committee. I had several professors and other grad students come to see my defense. Luckily the questions weren’t terrible!
After their questions, I was left to answer questions from just my committee. They did ask one question about one of my models that was challenging to explain since the modeling is done using a computer program, but I was able to get my method across to them. I was expecting a question on that since it’s hard to convey on a presentation slide, so I was prepared to answer that question. After all questions were answered, I had to leave the room while my committee conferred. Then my advisor called me back into the room and congratulated me. I passed my defense! Talk about a relief!!
I ate lunch on campus with Zach after my defense, went to physical therapy, then went HOME! I definitely laid in my bed for a fantastic relaxing hour with my furry girl Zoe, then I did have to go back to campus to watch another grad student’s presentation.
Zach and I went to dinner last night to celebrate. Sorry for the fuzzy picture but the dim restaurant wasn’t conducive for good picture-taking!
From here, I have a few minor edits to make to my thesis based on feedback from my committee (and my own Type-A self) and then it’s off to the library for format review!
The hardest part is over though! The defense is the most stressful part of graduate school!
For the remainder of the semester I’ll be putting the finishing touches on my thesis, writing two journal manuscripts for publication (not too bad since my thesis is written and they will be based off that), and continuing my work on a few projects until graduation day!