Adnanventure 3: Pittsburgh

Famous_Pittsburgh_SkylineI am proud to announce that #Adnanventure is back again and this time around it is Pittsburgh. As I write this, I am waiting on the airport for my flight to Pittsburgh. This #Adnanventure is slightly different from others as this time around I will be attending work events most of the time and will be bring you the awesome experiences I have. As this is an election year, Adnanventure 3 will be heavy on political news and events. But as always, I will be trying to explore as much of the city as I can.

So far these are the places I have been told to definitely visit –

  • Andy Warhol Museum
  • Primantis Sandwich
  • De Luca’s
  • Beehive Coffee

I would love to get more suggestions. Leave them in the comments section

Stay tuned for updates.

Building an Online Presence – A Beginner’s Guide

social-networksHow do you become relevant? How do you get your name out there? How do you get your opinion heard?

These are some of the questions I get asked almost on a daily basis now. My colleagues, acquaintances and even strangers seem to be getting more interested in finally building a proper online presence. Especially in the world of academia, getting your name out is crucial. It can not only land you a job eventually but it can help build a public persona that is more valuable than a permanent position at times (think positions like adviser to think tanks and media houses, both of which pay significantly better than an academic position). Based on this growing interest in building a brand name for ourselves, I thought I would do a special post starting with a quick guide to building an online presence. Continue reading Building an Online Presence – A Beginner’s Guide

AdnanVenture – Coming Home to ATL

IMG_20140321_163814Ending anything is horrible. Be it donuts, a burger or a trip, the end is always painful. I deal with endings in most awkward ways (Just for reference, I cannot bring myself to say bye to people, I just vanish… I know that is the shit thing to do… am still working on that). It is only recently I have figured out how to manage them properly. So on the last day of my DC Adnanventure, I refused to be awkward about it, instead I gave myself a challenge, to enjoy and not plan a single second till I got home.

So having moved to Extended Stay America for the last day in Virginia, I had to wake up really early to get back to town. Why did I have to wake up early? Because I do not have a car and I rely on public transport. So I wake up and wait for the bus, then wait for another bus and then eventually catch the Metro in to town. This whole effort normally ends up taking about an hour and a half. Normally I am cranky making such an effort but as this was last day in town and given that my bus was at 9 PM, I had nothing better to do or at least that is what I thought. Continue reading AdnanVenture – Coming Home to ATL

Road to Routines

ImageThere was a time when I enjoyed being spontaneous and basically winging anything and everything. This approach worked for me most of my life that was until I got to graduate school. The first semester I tried my level best to continue my approach to life which was basically to walk in with confidence and wing it while simultaneously hoping no one notices it. I failed miserably.

I tried everything; being productive in short bursts of a few days, writing papers based on meta analysis, talking to my class fellows and collecting info from them, even dedicating two full days a week to just catch up on stuff. Turns out, you cannot really catch up on stuff; all you can do is keeping up. If you by any chance cannot keep up, consider it as a lost cause. Continue reading Road to Routines

The $300 Spring Break Project: Planning Spring Break on A Budget

Image
Cause DC is like Cancun for Political Scientists

As spring break approaches, most people are planning their trips to get away from the grind of university life. Truthfully this time around, after the semester I have been having, this break is badly needed. I was going to do the touristy thing and just go to New York and do the touristy routine. But instead I am planning to do something totally different now. I am going to do a whole spring break i.e. 7 days, on a budget of $300. The target is to travel, stay at hotels, have three meals a day and sight see within the budget. 

Based on the concentration of my friends on the east coast, I am going to stay a couple of days in Durham/Raleigh in North Carolina and then move up to Fairfax, Va and Washington, DC for about 4 days of fun and discussions about politics and whatever else people talk about in DC. 

As I start out on this adventure, I would love to hear from all of you. All your ideas, suggestions, travel hacks and just good wishes. 

 

My Future Band

My Future Band

Now only if I could learn how to play an instrument… then we are all set

5 Lessons from 1st Semester of Grad School

Now that I am done with the first semester of Graduate School, I thought it would be a good idea to go over what I have learned so far. Chances are most of you will relate to most of these things and please do feel free to add more in the comments section.

Graduates1. You are not as smart as you think you are

This is the first thing that you learn in Grad School. We all assume that because we did great in undergraduate studies and did well on our GRE/GMAT to get here, that somehow it automatically means that we will completely rock grad school. Thing is what most of us forget is that, that whole effort was to get us this far, and from here on wards we start on a new journey which requires a whole new level of effort and commitment.

Think of it this way, it is like you get to a new city and you get out of the airport and to continue your journey on wards you need to go catch a train. You will go through cab rides, mass transit or whatever else is available to you to get to the train station. From the train station you will start a whole new journey. Undergraduate is the process of getting to the Train Station; Grad School is the process that eventually takes you to your final destination; two very separate types of journeys with different set of challenges. Continue reading 5 Lessons from 1st Semester of Grad School

Winter Recipes: Baked Chips

When I am not reading or writing papers, most of my time is spent cooking. For some twisted reason, I have always found cooking to be relaxing and a great way to take my mind off studies. So now that I am off for the Thanksgiving break, I thought about sharing a few simple recipes with you guys so that you can have fun food too. Given that in Grad School there is hardly time to spend preparing intricate dishes, I try and work with recipes which are quick, simple and ensure that I would not have to end up eating junk food. Continue reading Winter Recipes: Baked Chips

Welcome to Atlanta!

Image3 months ago I started off an adventure or as I like to call it, a Gradventure. I left everything behind to move to a new city in a different country on a different continent to pursue my PhD in Political Science.

Atlanta is home now for me and slowly I am learning to love home. But with any adventure, the start was rocky and it took a while before everything settled down. While I was going through the initially rocky start, I promised myself that I would start a blog that would help fellow international graduate students as well as guide those who are interested in starting their very own gradventure 🙂

Welcome to Atlanta… Welcome to Georgia State University … Welcome to my Gradventure! 😀