Saturday, May 7, 2016

Spring 2016 week 15: wrapping it all up

All good things must come to an end, and this week marked allot of ends in my life. The first one came earlier in the week when I began to finish my classes for the semester. The next end came Thursday as I wrapped up my last day as a intern at Tgen. The last end came Friday, as it marked my last day in my home state, Arizona. This has been a busy week for me since aspects for each of these ends called for my immediate attention. 

For my finals I prepared how nearly every student does, poorly and at the last minute haha. Studying was actually quite challenging considering the fact that my room was in a state of chaos due to packing and my study are was over run with miscellaneous nick-nacks that needed to be either thrown out or packed away. Through it all though, I was able to manage.

My final day at Tgen was very bitter sweet. It consisted mostly of tossing DNA samples and wrapping up any loose documents from all the work I did. The crushing moment however came when I had to turn in my ID badge. I was pretty disappointed because I was under the impression I was going to be able to keep it but as it turns out that's not the case. Kathleen gave me kind farewell. She gave me all her contact information and told me if I ever needed a recommendation or a reference not to hesitate to ask her for one.

Moving away from Arizona however is going to be a tough change for me over the next few months. I've never lived anywhere else other than the valley, so moving all the way across the country to Watertown New York will take some adjusting. It should be a fun new adventure and I'm looking forward to what it has in store for me. Like they say, when one door closes another one opens. 

Thank you all for taking the time to read my blog and I wish you ask the best. 

Till next time. 

Friday, April 29, 2016

Spring 2016 Week 14: Wrapping things up

This week at TGen was pretty tame. On Tuesday, I made a few final edits to both the how to build a poster guide as well as the waste management guide. The rest of the day was primarily spent getting ready for my final week. I organized my notes, made sure my documents were neatly organized, and that that everything that needed to be documented was properly done so. Kathleen also asked me to submit two more series of posters to the IT guys so that she has all the posters that she needs to be printed before I am gone. I pre-formatted them all for her already so if ever in the future she needs to print off more all she has to do is find the poster she wants and submit it.

Today was a slightly more exciting day. There were free bagels in the break room which is always nice. I also got to get out of my office. I had to run a poster down to the second floor to get cut. The gentleman who helped me is very nice and an interesting fella to talk to. After that, Kathleen and I spent the remainder of the day disposing of old DNA samples from past experiments. I found this mindless task quite soothing. it was nice to have a moment where I am still being productive but my brain can kick back and take a 30-minute break.  

I'm going to have to do something for Kathleen for my last week as a thank you for treating me so kindly. Maybe ill bring in doughnuts.... or maybe something a bit more healthy, I don't know yet. Well, like always thank you for reading and have a wonderful week. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

spring 2016 week 13: Out of the office

This exciting week at TGen was neither exciting nor at TGen. Kathleen was out of town this week so she gave me a list of things that I can work on off-site. This is mostly just to save me from having to pay ridiculous parking fees since TGen no longer has an employee parking lot. Well, that's enough of that, let me tell you all about the less interesting than normal work I've done this week. So last week I mentioned that I was reviewing the waste management guide. Well, this week I finished reviewing it and added some new information that I gathered from the internet as well as the surveys that I used to interview the labs. Hopefully, these new suggested safety practices will catch on. I also started the "How to make safety posters for dummies" guide, or at least that's what it reads like. I've learned this week that it is difficult to document some of these steps due to the changes and variations in the different version of PowerPoint. The best I can do at times is to give vague and general steps. Other times I feel like a smart @$$ when I give instructions on how to rotate a picture 90 degrees in either direction. I mean, the steps are so simple. You click on the picture, click and hold on the green dot above it, then rotate it 90 degrees in either direction. I feel like it's almost mocking, but oh well, Kathleen said to make it as dummy proof as possible so I am. Other than that, I got nothing else for all yall. 

Like always, thank you for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed!

Here is a video from one of my favourite youtube channels that I found interesting and maybe you will as well.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Spring 2016 Week 12: Spring Cleaning

Hello, all, and welcome back to yet another week where I shall share with you what I have done with my time at TGen. Let's get started! Tuesday was a good day filled with productivity. Kathleen and I spent over four hours downstairs in the waste room doing a little spring cleaning. We first started by going through this huge stack of expired kits that the labs could no longer use. Since nearly all of them were still sealed, we had to cut them open to see what was inside. once we opened them up we cataloged what was in them and if it was hazardous or if we could dispose of it down the drain. Unfortunately, nearly none of the chemicals were reusable so we threw a lot of stuff away. We were able to recycle the containers of some of the nonhazardous chemicals though. After that was done, we went through all the spill kits that were stored down there along with a huge drum and multiple boxes of "socks" and "pillows" for cleaning up spills. The reason for the quotation marks is because these "socks" and "pillows" are not articles of clothing that you wear on your feet or a comfortable sleeping support. Instead, they are fabric tubes, or squares, filled with absorbent materials used to clean up different types of hazardous spills. We found lots of cool stuff while perusing through all the stuff we didnt know TGen had. Once we were done with that we began to reorganize the place. We got a rack brought up from the basement by facilities to be placed in a corner in the common area so that we could store things that we thought should be easily accessible. Some of the things that we moved out onto this rack were all those reusable chemicals that I cataloged, the bins for both the spent bulbs and batteries, and a few hazardous spill kits. This was pretty much the bulk of the day. The rest of the day was spent emailing the help desk about the posters that I was trying to print. They told me that they weren't going to print the posters because they thought it wasn't going to turn out correctly, but after I assured them that the formatting is how it's supposed to be they finally decided to print it. Well, guess what happened..... I was right! The posters came out perfect and we only have to trim off two strips of white space which is about 1/2"x44".

Thursday was another very productive day, even though it is my short day. We started off by disposing of old DNA samples that were left in the freezers in the basement by previous labs. After this, it was all desk work. Kathleen sent me the old "Hazardous Waste Management Guide" so that I can review it and make changes to the document as needed. Basically, she wants me to review it and make sure that everything makes sense and then put in the new info we gathered months ago about waste minimization. She also asked me to create a how-to guide for creating the safety posters. She wants this so that in the future when I'm no longer an intern, she, or her new intern, can print off more safety posters or even create them if need be. These are tasks that will carry over into next week so expect to hear about it again.

Well, once again, thank you for visiting my blog, and like always, I hope you enjoyed reading.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Spring 2016 Week 11: Time to move on

This week at TGen was once again fairly typical. On Tuesday, we went into the lab on the east side of the fourth floor to set up another SAA (Satalite Accumulation Area) since the other ones we set up have proved to be effective. After that, we ventured down into the waste room where Kathleen and I discussed rearranging it so that we could remove some stuff off the top of the flammables cabinet and just have a better overall flow of things. While we were down there I snagged a few quick photos for a few posters that I was making. once that was all done we ascended to the sixth floor to claim our posters that we requested to be printed from the previous week before.

On Thursday, Kathleen was in meetings for most of the day so I worked by myself. We got a larger number of new SDS's in that morning than usual, so I spent about 30 mins looking them up and logging them into the online database. Once that was done I started working on the posters again. One big thing that Kathleen and I did not like about the posters was how much white space was left on the paper. The printer prints the posters on a roll that is 44" wide and our posters are only 17"x22". We asked the help desk if they could just print two posters on the same sheet but they told us that the printer does not allow it. I, being the stuborn fool I am, refused to accept this lie and found a way to format the posters to get around this issue. I sent in the new set of freshly formated posters to the help desk for printing. They did not email me back telling me there was an issue with the posters so we'll just see how they turn out on tuesday. After I finished that I took the new posters we got from Tuesday down to the second floor to get cut to size. I had a great talk with the tech down there who showed me some things that would have made my life so much easier when first started making these dang posters. He also pointed out that the TGen logo I was using on the posters was stretched. I didn't know this since I got the logo from another interns document. He then showed me where I can find tons of TGen logos in TGens intranet. with this in mind, I went straight back to my office to change the logo on evey single poster I made. So now that I had two posters cut and ready to go I got the frames and put them in. To my suprise, they were too small. I quickly double checked the measurements of the frame and the size i formatted the posters to make sure this wasnt my fault before I started pointing fingers. Luckily, it wasnt my fault. It turned out that for some reason the printer, or one of the help desk emploies shrunk them down half an in in each direction. I only hope that they dont mess up the new posters that I sent in. I gave very specific size dimentions so I dont thik they will, but who ever knows.

So next week were getting back to our roots! Kathleen and I are going to go back to focusing on waste minimization efforts. Im excited because honestly, I am bored to death of making these stupid posters!!! I just hope that the time I spent on them actually helps the staff practice good safety habits.

Well my lovely readers, thank you again for stoping by and thank you for all your comments. Till next time, have a good week!

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Spring 2016 Week 10: Test Print!

Welcome to another week where I get to tell you all about the adventures of being an intern at TGen. Remember last week when I said that this week I was going to get some of my safety posters printed out? Well, guess what! This week we finally got a poster printed (it's the picture at the bottom)! The downside, there were some ghosts in the formatting that showed up on the printed copy but were not visible on the original poster that I made. In addition to that, something happened when the poster was being printed and somehow got snagged, so there's this funky little scrunched up part on the poster that in all reality isn't even noticeable. The guy who is in charge of printing the posters said he would redo it since it was an error on their end. Lucky break for us because I was able to find the errors in the formatting that made those original mistakes show up on the poster and fix it then send it back down for reprinting. All in all, nobody ever needs to know that there were ever any original mistakes haha. We also sent over another poster to be printed since we were satisfied with the size dimensions that the poster came out as. Next week we should have a bunch of posters printed out and we'll  begin hanging them.

Kathleen found a new poster topic that she wants me to focus on. Cryostat Safety! She has tasked me with creating an informative cryostat poster that has a short list of safety information that should be taken into regard when using the cryostat. A good way to think about it is like an infographic, that's pretty much what I'm doing.

Like always, I'll keep yall up to date and hope you enjoyed reading. Have a nice day.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Spring 2016 Week 9: Going paperless!

This week at TGen was a fairly busy and productive one. Let’s start at the beginning. Tuesday was important for a few reasons. The first reason was because I heard back from Sigma-Aldrich about them accidently not sending us an SDS with two of our purchases as well as requesting them to email us all of our SDS's from here on out. They wanted some information that was above my pay grade, so I had to pass on the information to Kathleen to take care of, but were a step closer to making TGen more sustainable and eco-friendly. Tuesday was also the board meeting for the heads of the departments. I went because I’m Kathleen’s intern I suppose, I really have no clue why I have to go to these things. During the meeting, the big thing we discussed was how TGen is going paperless. Over the next few months, all the offices at TGen have to scan all their documents and shred them, which leads into what I got to do today. 

Today I spent a few hours going through file after file after file, checking every single document in them to find its corresponding file on the computer so that we know what documents still need to be scanned before they are shredded. It was tedious work but kind of fun at the same time. It was the electronic document version of find Waldo. It also really gives you an idea of how bad some of these scientists in the labs are at filing their paperwork and writing up documents for research proposals. 

Anyways, next week Kathleen and I are finally going to print out some of the safety posters that I came up with and hang them. I hope they are a success and really get people there thinking about some of the silly mistakes they make.

Well once again, that is it for this week. Like always, I hope you enjoyed and I'll see you next week.