Friday, September 17, 2010

08. Complete and Submit Trinity Application for PhD

Currently working on :
Step 1 : Print out application form, check when I need to apply by, and what I need to send
Step 2 : Make a list of what needs to be done and by when
Step 3 : Contact anyone that I need information / references from
Step 4 : Gather anything needed for submission
Step 5 : Complete forms
Step 6 : Submit
Well this task is on hold until 2011/12 at least. :)

Update : 28 May 2011

Since I've decided to do a 2 year, part time Masters before beginning the PhD, this task won't be done until late 2012 / early 2013 and may not make it to be done within the time limit :)

02. Get funding for PhD

1. Apply to IRCSET – denied!
2. Apply to Westmeath Co Co – denied!
So initial applications have been a bust, looks like 2010/11 will be spent searching for funding options!

Update : 28 May 2011

As with 08, this task may not get completed in time for the end date of the list, since I'll be taking on a 2 year Masters!

01. Graduate from NUI Maynooth

Having started university in 2002, I was starting to think I would never get through it all!

02/03 First year – I did Maths, Chemistry, Experimental Physics and Mathematical Physics. I’d covered pretty much everything in Leaving Cert, so got through that year fine.

03/04 Second year – Dropped Mathematical Physics, continued with Maths, Chemistry and Experimental Physics. Did very well in Maths, not too bad in Physics, and scrapped through Chemistry.

04/05 Third year [1] – Dropped Experimental Physics and Chemistry, and took up Pure Mathematics and Statistics in the Maths stream. Did good in Statistics, but got totally lost in Pure Maths with about a million theorems.

05/06 Third year [2] – Repeated changing from Pure Maths to Applied Maths, and scrapped my way through the year.

06/07 Fourth year [1] – Got diagnosed with depression and agoraphobia that year and ended up not sitting any exams.

07/08 Fourth year [2] – Only completed January exams this year, with a breakdown at the start of the second semester leading to dropping out. Did very well in Applied Maths exams, but failed Statistics.

08/09 Year off after much thinking

09/10 Fourth year [3] – Sat Statistics only in Semester 1 with good results. In Semester 2 things got a bit tough, but managed to achieve good grades in Applied Maths exams. Repeated Statistics exams in August and finally got them all done!

Graduating in October 2010 with a 1st Class Honours degree!

12. Apply for Grant with WCC for PhD


Downloaded application form – June 2010

Gather necessary forms – partially completed August 2010, but wrote letter explaining why there were some missing forms and why (results not out yet etc!)

Apply – application sent in on 30 August 2010.

Rang them on the 15 September 2010, informed that because of a rule regarding changing status from non-mature dependent to mature independent needing a 3 year break between undergrad and postgrad, my application was rejected.

Due to complications, it’s not possible to apply elsewhere, and so PhD is now on hold until I can find an alternative funding source!

06. Complete ECDL

Part 1 : Register and Buy Skills Card

Completed 20:00 Tuesday 08 June 2010

About a month after getting the card, there were finally some exam times put up on the website, and so I booked them all.

Part 2 : Complete each module

I decided to just get them all out of the way as quickly as I could, and managed to get through them all over the space of 8 days!

21 July 2010 – Powerpoint – 97%

22 July 2010 – Word – 88%

26 July 2010 – Basic ICT – 94%

26 July 2010 – Windows XP – 97%

27 July 2010 – Excel – 97%

28 July 2010 – IE 8 / Outlook – 97%

29 July 2010 – Access – 91%

Considering I started to study the modules on the 18th of July, I think I did pretty well!

Go me!

My BFF is Quarter of a Century

Well, my BFF hit the big 25 this week. And I, for reasons known only to the leprechauns in my head, decided to bake her the most ambitious cake I have ever attempted! You can see the full glory of how it was made starting here

I had made her a small, pink cake last year, which was, to say the least, the most sad looking little cake ever, despite the fact that it tasted alright. I needed to step up my game, big time.

But, I thought, if I can make macaroons, then dammit I can make a bloody awesome cake! I spent most of the week planning and designing, and teasing my BFF with speculative secrets and suspense. I wanted this cake to be her all over, to speak volumes about her, and to be instantly recognisable as hers.

One thing I am eternally grateful for is 24 hour Tesco [other supermarkets are available]. They pretty much had everything I could have needed, with the exception of cake board, but I guess that was hoping too much!

There was, of course, the issue of trying to get the cake in to the restaurant, which I solved with bribery and more cake, and thanks to a willing friend with personal transport. Dublin Bus is not ideal for carrying a cake on, nor is walking half way across Dublin city! Bustling crowds are not a safe place for cake.

Of course, it was also lashing rain on the day when I arrived, but was so grateful to be dropped just a couple of steps from the door! When I got inside, thankfully the hostess was right inside the door, and I left the cake with them, with instructions to bring the cake with dessert. Then made my way to the back of the restaurant to the party. Despite the fact that I arrived a few mins late, my BFF wasn’t there, so I really had nothing to worry about!

The meal was wonderful, most of the guests knew nothing about the cake at all until we were pondering over dessert, but it went down a storm! The birthday girl was really happy, and, for reasons unknown, I got a round of applause!


Read all about how it was made on my cooking blog!

Part 1 :

Part 2 :

Part 3 :

Part 4 :

Part 5 :