A dual-purpose of AGU

A mentor once told me that attending conferences such as AGU make for a perfect opportunity to reconnect with colleagues and establish new relationships with students and scientists. He then went on to say that because of this, he’s made some career-long partnerships in academia. Although AGU has only been the second conference I’ve attended (but by far the largest, ~22,000 people!), I can already see this developing among new Polaris students and faculty. The conference made for a great opportunity to catch up with friends and meet other students, while also discussing emerging results from the Y4 watershed and ways we can expand our research in future expeditions. However, as now a recent college graduate applying to graduate schools, the AGU conference also served a dual-purpose for me. AGU became a valuable opportunity to ask questions to students in graduate programs I’m interested in, and meet students who work with advisors I’m applying to work with. Additionally, I was able to meet well known (some would even say, famous!) scientists and faculty at universities in their respective fields. One of the most exciting moments during my AGU experience occurred during my poster presentation, when I found myself discussing my Polaris research with two university faculty and a graduate student whose research I admire. Although I have my graduate school applications already lined up…conferences such as AGU provide a chance to seek out graduate advisors, and often for advisors to also express their interest in working with you…something I observed happening with other Polaris students during their poster sessions!

For all these reasons and more, the AGU conference was an amazing academic experience and one that I would encourage all students to seek during their undergraduate studies…and if you’re lucky enough, maybe they will be in a great location like San Francisco!

Cheers, everyone!

Sam and I at the base of the famous zig-zaging Lombard St. in San Francisco.

Sam and I at the base of the famous zig-zagging Lombard Street in San Francisco.