October 2009 Updates

Since our last little escapade to Dubai, we’ve actually been pretty busy just doing our schoolwork and research, going out mostly here in Abu Dhabi on the weekends. My research is slowly, but steadily coming along. What’s exciting is that in early October, Boeing officially announced its partnership with Masdar on my project! So, if you google “Masdar Boeing” you’ll find a host of articles about the research I will be doing, with quotes from my advisor, Dr. Sgouridis. So that’s actually been really exciting! (http://www.greentechmedia.com/green-light/post/masdar-boeing-upo-plot-biofuel-from-marsh-grass/)

Otherwise, today we had our very first test, a math test, and it was terrible. Fortunately, most of the other students agreed, so hopefully there will be some leniency in the grading…we shall see.  Also, on Tuesday of this week I got elected to the first full Masdar Institute Student Council as a Member-at-Large! It seems that I will be heading up the Facilities and Transportation Committee, which, with the hopeful move the Masdar next year, should be a lot of work, but might give me a chance to really help improve the lifestyle of the future students.  The elections, not surprisingly, were not without their own fair share of drama, though, but I won’t discuss that here.

In more exciting news, I saw a world famous DJ, Paul Van Dyke, a few weeks ago, which was an awesome show. Since Napster came out I have been listening to his music (thanks to Nappy and Rich too).

And last week some students organized a trip to the National Avian Research Center (NARC) about an hour south of Abu Dhabi. We saw a presentation about this massive effort to save this bird, the Houbara Bustard… wait for it… so that the Emiratis can continue to hunt them with their falcons. Ironic? Yes. But for a good cause overall? I guess so.  However, the most exciting part of the trip was getting to run amok in the nearby sand dunes and to enjoy an awesome dinner afterwards (free of charge!).

Desert Sunset

Desert Sunset

Conquerors of the Sand Dunes

At the desert dunes

At the desert dunes

Most importantly, I’m going to Cyprus tomorrow (actually in 7 hours) because we have all next week off from school! Woohoo!

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