Friday, May 13, 2016

We're Talking About Practice.

For our second module of 20.109, we modeled an academic journal club, where members of a lab present research in the field to the rest of the group. 

Presentations are my life. I had lots of practice presenting and performing from high school band and oral assignments. The rush after a presentation is one of my favorite feelings in the world. Stage fright escapes me. I love presenting so much that whenever I’m not careful at parties, dates, or casual conversation, my contributions get way out of hand and turn into one-sided seminars. There are few situations where I feel as natural as i do in front of of a large stage, the larger the audience the better. I try to complete at least one big speaking gig each year, just to enjoy the moment that presentation entails. My favorite speaking gigs were Terrascope 2016 and First Annual BAHFest! at MIT.  As such, the 20.109 journal club was a super fun assignment, and I would truly do it again.

My presentation focused on the results of this article, which described the regulatory role that RNF-138 protein performs in switching between DNA repair pathways. Very neat stuff, but the challenge is to fit an entire study’s work in 10 precious minutes. It is pretty common to plan out one’s talking points or the script, run through several times and practice for live audiences.

However, did none of those things. I got surprised by my own slides and found errors in transitions that caught  me off guard and tripped up my flow. Just like rap, presentation is all about the flow. 

My advice to all involved in the rap and research industry is to practice, practice, practice your work before you debut!

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