Monday – May 26, 2008:
This is a true story of 7 strangers, picked to live at the Stud in North Olmsted, Ohio, made to stay up long hours, work together, party together – to find out what happens when you take 7 of the most qualified students throughout the US and bring them to the NASA Academy, attempt to remain polite, and always keep it real.
Having arrived over a month ago, staffer Jay Carroll awoke on the morning of May the 26th, 2008 to a renewed sense of joy…No longer would he be a comrade to loneliness! Today was Memorial Day 2008, and today was the day that the Glenn Interns were scheduled to arrive. It all started around 11 a.m. when Ephraim Chen knocked on Jay’s door. Ephraim introduced himself and after a few handshakes he and his family headed out for an afternoon together.
Shortly after the departure of Sir Chen, Jay received a frantic phone call from Kim Trent explaining that she had actually arrived an hour early in Cleveland. Finishing up his hair and running out the door Jay departed for the airport to pick up RAs Kim, Sabrina, and Kristin. After meeting Kim in the terminal Jay pondered how to fit 3 people and luggage into a car the size of your every day loaf of bread. Not wanting to create an awkward situation on Day 0, Jay and Kim decided to take the first of two trips back to hotel to save space for Sabrina and Kristin. After dropping off Kim, the loaf of bread returned to the airport and served as noble stallion for the transportation of Sabrina Thompson and Kristin Uhmeyer. The Academy was half present, only the drivers had yet to arrive. In the hours that followed they too arrived. By 3:30 p.m. we had added Mehran Mohebbi, Tom Vo, and Mary Beth Lewton to the best Academy in the land.
Around 5:30 p.m. the Academyites departed the Stud for Dr. M. David Kankam’s house in Moreland Hills Ohio. Arriving around 6:15, the group debarked the cars and was noticeably eager to meet their director. A minute later Director Kankam answered the door and welcomed the new Academy into his home for dinner. The evening was filled with conversation, great food, presents, and group pictures.
After a 40 minute drive back to the Stud the Glenn Academy enjoyed the 2007 Ames Academy movie. Many laughs were had at Jay’s expense, but he was quick to remind them that they will all have the same opportunity because Glenn will have a movie this summer for the very first time!
Tuesday – May 27, 2008:
ZOMG BADGING!!!! Rolling into the hallway at 7:0a.m. the Glenn Academy was surely a stunning sight to see. All decked out in suits and dresses the future gurus loaded into the vehicles for their first day of work. After a quick breakfast stop at Dunkin Donuts the Academyites arrived at the Glenn Research Center for the very first time. They entered the Glenn security office for summer badging at 7 a.m. One hour and 10 minutes later, after some serious fingerprinting, and crazy lines out the door the 7 RAs had their badges. Already 10 minutes late for Orientation the Academy members rushed over to Building 3 to meet Dr. Kankam, who was stressed out over the badging situation. After a few introductions and lectures the Glenn Academy was dispatched off for their first afternoon with their PIs.
Arriving at building 49 at 3:30 p.m. the Glenn Academy joined Jay for an afternoon briefing on the Academy program. The group departed GRC at 5:15 p.m. after a few stellar group pictures were taken. Once back at the Stud Mehran, Kristin, and Jay decided to go for a run while the rest thought some relaxation after a long day was a good idea. Meeting up again at 8:00p.m. for the first rap session of the summer the Academyites toasted to a great summer with their new NASA mugs. This is really going to be one AMAZING summer!
Wednesday – May 28, 2008:
If there is anything like a normal day at the NASA Academy this would be as close as we’ll ever come. The morning started at 7:15 a.m. when the 8 tired RAs loaded into the cars for the Glenn Cafeteria. After breakfast the RAs headed off to work for their first full day.
Circa 5 p.m. the Interns called it quits for the day and retired back to the stud. What was on tab for this evening???? SHOPPING!!! The local Giant Eagle played host to the first major shopping trip of the summer. After stocking up on the goods the Academyites returned to the hotel for a nice relaxing evening.
Thursday – May 29, 2008:
Rise and Shine!!! Another early morning! After enjoying the flavor blasting, explosion in your mouth food from the Glenn cafeteria the students headed off for day 3 with their PIs. The work day seemed pretty normal and even proved nice enough for Jay to drop the roof on the convertible. After lunchtime Ephraim and Sabrina hand delivered a thank you card (which by the way was awesomely designed by Mr. Tom Vo) to Dr. Kankam. Dr. Kankam was all smiles about the card, and was delighted to see some students drop by for a reason other than business.
After work the Academyites headed back to the Stud for what was supposed to be a quiet evening. All that was scheduled was a group project meeting at 10 p.m. So around 10 p.m. the group gathered for the meeting. Ephraim was the last one to arrive and refused to accept the fact that the meeting was actually a birthday party for him, even after Tom and Jay walked in with a tipping candles cake and the group failed miserably at singing Happy Birthday. The second time proved to be a charm for the song lords and Ephraim masterfully cut his cake. Happy 21st Ephraim!
Friday – May 30, 2008:
TGIF!!! Breakfast again at 7:30…Ugggh. After what seemed to be a quick morning the Academy RAs found themselves thinking over their first assignment of the summer, the Individual Project Description, which was due at 5:00p.m. All of the interns completed the assignment on time and everyone rode back to the Stud with a smile on their face, it was Friday evening. It was now time for the first weekend of the Academy!
So what do space geeks do on the weekend? Well watch LOST of course! After some crazy 3 hour LOST marathon Kim, Sabrina, Kristin, Mary Beth, Mehran, Tom and Jay found themselves in room 118 playing with a toy paper shuttle. After Mehran managed to plant the shuttle into Kim’s hair a few times the group decided it was time to crack into some sports. Ping Pong was the calling of the evening and the first match was a doozie. Mary Beth and Mehran pretty much tore apart Jay and Tom. Wanting revenge Jay teamed up with Kristin to take on Mehran and Mary Beth. Ahh yes revenge is so sweet. After a harrowing comeback Kristin and Jay managed to defeat the lofty champs by one point!
Saturday – May 31, 2008:
Everyone got to sleep in…ua.m.il 10 a.m. anyway. The Glennterns wandered over to Jay’s at 1 a.m. to start Teambuilding day. Greeting the interns at the door Jay explained the scheme. There was to be no talking for the duration of the first activity. Soon the Academyites found themselves barricaded into the back of Jay’s dungeon with a terrible LASER beam grid blocking their escape! Oh No! What would they do to survive? They would have to somehow get everyone through the LASER grid…but once someone snuck through a hole in the grid the hole would close up leaving less options…and no talking….good lord this is a Saturday? Mary Beth lead the charge and got one heck a of a workout passing back and forth between the beams. She tried everything over the course of the event from feet first, to head first, they all worked … but needless to say some worked better than others. Frustrated by slow progress Mehran decided that he would man up and take one for the team. Pulling his shorts up on both legs the leader attempted to tiptoe through the grid. His efforts however were vain…he didn’t make it. But Tom was quick to cheer himup. Feeling she had the answer Kim stepped up and volunteered to be hoisted 5 feet in the air and fed through the LASER grid. After doing what looked like a botched trapeze act Kim made it through the grid and managed to not break anything! An hour later, after sweating profusely and failing at least 50 times the group was successful! They retired for a quick swim in the pool and some lunch.
At 1:30p.m. team leaders Kristin and Mary Beth joined Jay for a briefing session on the day’s next activity: a photo scavenger hunt around Cleveland! The leaders prepped their teams and headed out on the hunt. Reports had it that Tom, Ephraim, and Kristin drove 9 miles out of their way looking for a statue of President Hamilton, and managed to keep themselves entertained by singing numerous love songs to one another. The grapevine also let out that Kim, Sabrina, Mary Beth and Mehran had gone all over town flashing pictures of a specialty store trying to find its location.
After all the photo hunting the Academyites joined Jay for dinner at the Hard Rock Café in Cleveland. Dinner was great, but certainly second to all of the laughs had over the day’s activities. After another group shot outside the Hard Rock Ephraim and Sabrina embarked on a return voyage to the Stud while Kim, Mary Beth, Kristin, Mehran, Tom, and Jay headed out for a night on the town. After walking through the Flats district the eager group was invited into the silk nightclub! They swept through the nightclub and headed over to Shooters for the evening where they enjoyed some nice boats and watched the sunset over Lake Erie. After dark they headed to the Dance floor and proceeded to dance the night away. When they finally couldn’t take it any longer the weary interns walked back to their cars but not without excitement. While crossing a bridge in the Flats the Academy members realized an alarming bell sound. It took a few seconds to register, but the interns soon realized the bridge was about to move for a ship coming down the river. Running to the other side the Academyites barely made it before the bridge swung across the river….phew close one. All in all it was a great first week! Welcome 2008 Glenn Academy…this is only the beginning!