The Usual Life: Astro, Robotics, and Math

These past few weeks have flown by! We’ve gotten our first taste of snow at Exeter, with surely much more to come around in the following months.

We celebrated the end of last term with a bang; Math class was surely one of my more fun — and more memorable — classes. Math classes at Exeter are a bit different than from to other schools: our textbooks are not split into chapters, but rather mixed together so they build from one another. Every problem is a real-world problem, which gives you a special insight to revisualize everything you see. Everything seems so different when math teaches you how to think rather than how to punch numbers into a calculator; it teaches you to see every problem as a math equation. Here’s our math class celebrating on the last day by ordering Dominos. Shoutout to Mr. Mallinson for the pizza!

Math Pizza

Fortunately, life after school never gets boring. Exeter offers over 100+ extracurricular clubs. Every Friday night we make an effort to make the long trek behind the school, far away from any bright lights and cars and distant enough to actually hear absolute silence, to reach Grainger Observatory. Behind our stadium Exeter has a 3 dome observatory with all the instruments you could possibly imagine: spectrographs and all the state-of-the-art telescopes you could imagine. Away from the city lights, Exeter has some of the clearest skies. Astronomy has always been one of my passions — ever since I was a kid I’d dreamt of delving into the deep skies and ponder over the true size and depth of the Universe. I’m glad that I can finally get to do that at such a wonderful school. Here’s a picture of Astronomy Club, a 10 second time exposure in the middle of the night of all of us in front of Chart House, the classroom and library in front of the domes.

Astro Exposure

A friend and I decided to conduct a little project this year. Both of us are avid Robotics fans who have been passionately devoted to mechanical engineering since we were little. This year, we decided to enter a competition I used to do during middle school. It’s called SeaPerch, and it seeks to excite high schoolers about marine engineering and STEM careers. We are just about finished with the building of our underwater submersibles; we plan to solder and wire them in the next few days and test them out in two weeks. Here is my friend Graham ’16 who gladly let me take his picture of our robot during assembly!

Graham Robo

This past term has passed so quickly! Keep yourself busy at Exeter – there is never nothing to do. As Christmas break approaches, I’m looking forward to Science Bowls, Model UN conferences, Robotics Competitions and Astronomy trivia competitions in the weeks to come. Happy Holidays Everyone!

Winter Wonderland!

I can still count the hours that each day is getting shorter by, as the long 10 hour days drag on through endless snow caked on the sidewalks. Yet I know that every hour spent toiling in front of a computer screen while the blizzard wages outside, or the hours spent completing an English narrative or bending your mind around a Physics problem is all worthwhile. And coming from Vegas, the snow makes Exeter my own little paradise!

Hector's winter wonderland

We’ve received well over 6 inches of snow, with another 7 inches coming in today and later on this week. Understand that snowball fights are just any part of any Exeter experience, and no matter how bad you appear to lose (just like I did this weekend against some friends from Soule Hall), the simple fun moments that take place are the ones you will cherish for a lifetime.

Hector's gingerbreadTo commemorate the advancing of Christmas, we Exonians took to the Wentworth Bash, the best dance of Christmas season! I, however, preferred not to flash off my insane dancing skills and preferred to take part in a Gingerbread making contest happening right next door, open to all Exeter students. Just look at the masterpiece we created!

Last weekend was also a little time for some intense extracurriculars. I am a part of Model United Nations, a club at Exeter that mocks parliamentary debate in a United Nations setting. A team of 12 students and I went to St. John’s Prep in Massachusetts to debate. It was my first conference, my first taste of debate and international relations, the most fun I have ever had outside of Exeter.Hector's Model UN pic

And as we count the final days approaching Winter Break, where we all get to go back home for some well deserved Rest and Relaxation, I’ll always find the time to remember the fun in the snow,  the connections I make by meeting new people everyday, and the vast opportunities waiting for you to grasp.