2023 Highlights + Updates

February 03, 2024

Hello everyone!

Just posting a short year in review + update, since I haven't been very active on here. I know it's a little belated, but better late than never, right?

2023 In Review

2023 was just a big year. Like, one of those years where it feel like more than one, if that makes sense?

I also deliberated on whether or not to post this section. On social media, there's a real tendency to only post the "highs", and never the lows. But, conversely, I also think it's really important to celebrate the wins when you get them.

To those ends, my highlights of 2023 include:
  • March: I got to see a rocket launch. I had nothing to do with that rocket whatsoever, but it was really cool to see a launch up close.
  • Also March: I presented some new research at the UCF Student Symposium, and won a Judge's Choice Award.
  • April: I successfully defended my MA thesis to the public and my committee.
  • May: I graduated from my MA Degree!
  • August: I started a completely new job (Economic Analyst) in a completely new field (Economics / Public Policy). 
  • September: My housemate and I went whale watching, which similar to the Rocket Launch was just really cool to see.
  • December: I hosted my first Friend-mas in a few years, with people I hadn't seen in a long time.
  • December 31: On the very last day of 2023, I completed the full, edited draft of an academic paper, which we submitted to the journal in January 2024. Hopefully I can post some updates about this soon!

2024 Outlook

I'm posting this here to hold myself accountable.  My overall goal for the year is "Progress not Perfection" - It's okay if I don't  hit all of them, so long as I make a genuine attempt at them.
  • Physical and Mental Well-being: My graduate degree took a physical and mental toll on me that cannot be understated. My single biggest self-development goal for this year is to put my health first, and work on recovery.
  • (Re)Finding hobbies: Since I started at University, way back in 2016, a lot of my hobbies have fallen to the wayside - poetry, painting, embroidery, and just generally being creative. These are things that used to bring me a lot of joy, and I'm excited to try and re-discover this for myself. I also want to continue to build my coding skills, particularly in a creative sense.
  • More Science Communication: Although I'm on a bit of an indefinite academic break at the moment, I did really enjoy the work I did with Sapiens back in 2022. I hope to continue to build these skills, and do more outreach in 2024.
Anyway, I think it'll be interesting to review these (and my other, more personal goals) at the end of the year, to see how it pans out. 

Until next time, Brianna.


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