I handed in my thesis on June 19th, 2006. About a month after being back from South-East Asia, Australia, and New-Zealand for what was the trip of a lifetime with Bonnie. It was an insane amount of work to finish a 100 pages thesis in less than a month, with probably 30 pages left to write. Nonetheless, I managed to finish in time and hand it in to the Graduate Office, where they sent it an external examiner who was going to tear it apart. Well, that was the worst case scenario.
There were three possible external examiners. Two of them were relatively lenient examiners, which would have been good for my thesis grade-wise. Of course, the most brilliant and academically talented of the three examiners, Paul Tupper, ended up being the examiner for my thesis. When I think back, I feel like it was a good thing because I know he read it thoroughly and really tried to understand it. But, this might have meant that I did not get the Dean’s Honor List. And frankly, who gives a cr@p ? Right ? Ha ha. Sure, it’s a nice honor to get, but it is not the end of the world. Well, let me finish my story first.
Two months later, I got my thesis back. It has gone around (literraly!) the world to David Bryant, and now back into my hands. What an amazing thing. We are now late in August, and I’ve also got the copy that went to Paul. It’s hard to see your work all marked up in red. All the errors and mispellings pointed out to you. in red. It looks like it’s bleeding… I have now another month to correct those little mistakes that accumulated and were so nicely pointed out to me. Then I have to hand in it. October 4th. Later in October I will be graduating from McGill University, with a M.Sc. degree in Mathematics / Phylogenetics. I loved the journey I went through at McGill and would recommend to anyone who’s wondering whether they should do it, to do it. It was a lot of fun and I truly enjoyed my time spent with David Byrant, my supervisor. Just Do It.
Still today, I can’t even believe that this thesis took me to New-Zealand. Me, writing this little piece of Mathematics in the apartment with Clint and Kate, and then later with Bonnie. Writing almost everyday at the Gloria Jean Coffee at Borders. Writing at the Bioinformatics Institute in Auckland. I can’t wait to be done, but it will be turing a huge page of my life. Not sure what will be there next for me, but one thing’s for sure, New-Zealand is in the picture.