# My Academic Journey

## Here is the timeline of my crazy undergraduate academic journey:

March 2019: I was admitted to UCSB as a pre-biopsychology major

September 2019: I saw physics as a required course for biopsychology and immediately switched to pre-Psychological & Brain Sciences (pre-PBS), which has no hard physics/math/cs requirement. I was like that back then.

October 2019: Because of my fascination with literature and humanities in general, as well as wanting to not just read English/American literature and continue learning the French language, history, and literature, I declared my second major: Comparative Literature with an emphasis on French Literature and Literary Analysis with Neuroscience

February 2020: Declared a French minor since completing my comparative literature major basically means completing half of the French minor requirement, plus I wanted to study abroad in France, so why not...

August 2020: I took the statistics course for psychological research (PSY10B), which I enjoyed quite a lot surprisingly. In addition, I really felt that I wanted to do a Ph.D. in psychology and I felt that learning more statistics would help, so I decided to pursue a minor in Statistics (although never officially declared). In addition, I always loved writing, so I also decided to pursue a minor in Professional Writing (also never officially declared).

September 2020: I finished my pre-major requirement for PBS and became a full PBS major, which I kept all the way till graduation.

December 2020: I almost failed my introductory linear algebra course (thank god homework was 60% of the grade) so I gave up on Stats minor.

April 2021: I watched a lot of math videos by 3Blue1Brown and ZachStar, which were truly inspirational and motivational. In addition, I reflected a lot on why I did so poorly in my linear algebra class and concluded that my approach to learning mathematics wasn't at all correct. Plus, I gained interest in the mathematical basis behind various kinds of neuroscience methods. So, I decided to give Mathematics a try.

August 2021: My new learning approach worked well and I got A's for both differential equations and vector calculus classes. Plus, I quite enjoyed solving hard problems! After getting clearance from the math department, I declared a pre-mathematics (B.A.) major (Note: Mathematics B.A. is different from a typical Mathematics/Applied Mathematics B.S. without required multivariable calculus courses and with three fewer upper-division math courses). At the same time, I dropped my comparative literature major, which was a tough decision to make. I really enjoyed literature, but I decided to change my academic emphasis. Plus, the literature courses' quality online was not really satisfactory.

April 2022: Finished my pre-mathematics requirement and became a full Mathematics (B.A.) major.

August 2022: After intensively taking math courses in the spring and summer quarters of 2022, I found out that I was able to actually finish a B.S. in mathematics on time, so I decided to put more burden on myself and was choosing between applied mathematics and pure mathematics. I chose pure mathematics because there were more courses to take for applied mathematics* and I became aware of the applications in neuroscience of concepts of pure mathematics, such as abstract algebra, topology, and geometry. Hence, I declared a B.S. in Mathematics. In addition, I dropped my French Minor and intended to not pursue a writing minor. I guess things change and you can't have them all.

So that is the story of how I ended up with the two majors I currently hold. Phew.

Additionally, around spring 2022, I began to explore post-graduate options. And I concluded that

I didn't want to go right into a Ph.D. program

I liked math way more than I expected.

I didn't want to give up on neuroscience.

I wanted to do something that involve both math and neuroscience, with a moderate emphasis on math.

Therefore, after some exploration, I found out that electrical engineering is quite a cool field that suits my interest. So, I applied in late 2022 and was accepted to the M.S. program in electrical engineering at Stanford University in February 2023, and committed in March.

I feel like I will keep exploring and changing what I want to do. Who knows what will happen two years later? Anyway, thanks for reading through all these! I hope this is an inspiration to you:)

*It turns out that even though the number of courses for pure math was fewer than applied math, the amount of work I had to put in was just...