Wait...I work at the Field Museum?
One day I was working late finishing up some extractions when Erica asked, "So are any of your friends doing something like this for the summer?" That's exactly when it hit me: I work at the Field Museum. The place I've gone since I was a little youngin parading around in an oversized camp t-shirt. I've been here a million times, but the thing is...now I work here. And it's not only the fact that it's the Field Museum, but rather the fact that I'm doing real science. Not labs that I already know the results of and am about to turn in for a grade. Not studying for a science competition. I have my own workspace in a busy lab filled with undergraduates, grad students, postgrads, and people working on their PhD dissertations. This is no Pizza Hut. To say that I was a part of a huge project being undertaken at the Pritzker Lab (as minimal as our batches may be in the big picture) is more than an achievement or something to boast about; it requires a few seconds of very thoughtful reflection...I'm serious.
I like bragging about my job at the Field Museum, and I can get a few "Oh wow!" remarks, but what they don't realize is that this internship is the perfect test run for everything that I hope to do in the future. The short 8-year-old wanted to be a vet, oh wait a soccer player, no wait a lawyer! The rising senior is looking forward to using a pipette every day.