I spent more time than normal this summer in Bloomington (not necessarily a bad thing). This summer was spent trudging through something every PhD student must go through, Quals. This word will certainly evoke a reaction from most graduate students. One of three to be precise. The first is one of blissful ignorance, “what’s quals?”. These students are new and don’t need to worry about Quals yet. The second reaction is similar to a depressed shake of the head. These students are either approaching their Quals or currently working through them. The final reaction appears like they are remembering a bad taste. These people have taken their Quals and although they aren’t fond of them they respect the process and understand it now. No matter the program we all must pass a test to prove our worth if you will. It is difficult but it is worth it. A hurdle on the path to the next plateau of higher learning. As I finish a summer filled with more reading / writing and less bench work than I would prefer I am ready to jump back into my project and continue this journey. Remember as long as you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life.