16 April 2007

Geeking out again

As I did last November, I'm taking an engineering course for work.

I should be doing my homework now, bu I'm writing about it instead. Good attitude, right? heh. Turns out the homework includes reading the first three chapters of a book written by a colleague who recently left the company. And I've read/written/edited on this technology in the past, so the reading is no problem. But I never had to actually *do* the calculations before, and I have this *thing* about math.

As with the first course I took, my classmates are mostly young, recent graduates of engineering programs. We have an interesting mix of engineers, which simply points to the shortage of qualified petroleum engineers. We have mechanical engineers, chemical engineers, manufacturing engineers, industrial engineers, civil engineers.... and me, of course.

I'm always the odd gal in these classes, first because I'm old enough to be my classmates' mom, and second because I'm not an engineer. There are two other gals in the class, both Americans (in contrast with the gals in my first class, one each from Russia & Colombia). The instructor already picked me out as the idiot... (sigh) I think it's the big hair, but it could be the "Corporate" in my job description. I am very worried about the math, so I don't mind, really. No, I lied. I hate to be labeled "big dummy from corporate" every time I walk into one of these classes. So ok I just have to keep proving myself. I can do that. I can do this. (repeat)

That said, we started the class with a pre-test, an embarrassing examination of what we already know about the subject at hand. Having read about it, I knew more than most, which isn't saying much. I had the second highest grade in the class, and I got a 33. That's why we're in the class, I suppose. But the pre-test was closed book, and the real tests will be open-book. I can do *anything* with an open book.

Anyway, on day 1, I have already learned 100 useful facts and concepts, so it's all good. More to come. I have to do homework now....