My fourth week of the Spring 2013 semester

January 2013

I am in my fourth week of the Spring 2013 semester here at Riddle and operations are in full swing. I have been very busy with my classes. I’m taking 16 credit hours this semester which means I spend a lot of my time studying/doing homework during the week. What has worked out so well this semester is the fact that I was able to set my schedule and pick my own classes. I was able to stack four of my classes together on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so I go right from one class to another without having much down time (other than an hour lunch break). Last semester I had class from 9:45-12:30, then I had to wait around for a class at 3:45 on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Other than the fact that I could take a nap after lunch, I didn’t really like that schedule; I just didn’t feel very productive. So this semester should be better from a schedule standpoint.

As I briefly mentioned in my last entry, I really like all of my professors this semester. All of them are so knowledgeable in their subjects and passionate about what they are teaching. For example, my Introduction to Rhetoric Professor spent 20 years working as an award-winning journalist for the Daytona Beach News Journal, while my Instrument Pilot Operations professor spent years flying the DC-10 for Hawaiian Airlines. It really makes each class engaging and I feel like I can take away a lot from each of my professors.

ROTC is also in full swing. We have been having Physical Training (PT) on Monday and Friday mornings and Leadership Laboratory on Wednesday mornings. I have been working hard at PT getting ready for our Physical Fitness Assessment (PFA) which is graded based on sit-ups, push-ups and a mile and a half run. Your PFA score is important in determining scholarships, rank and Officer Potential so it is important to me that I do well.

Ever since coming back to Daytona Beach in early January, the Daytona International Speedway, which is adjacent to the Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus on the other side of the airport, has been alive with action. This past weekend they held the Rolex 24 race, where race teams compete for 24 hours around the track. It is a test of endurance and skill for the drivers and their crews. My Air Force ROTC program sends cadets each year to volunteer at the Speedway and help with the races. This past weekend, me and a couple of friends worked for 11 hours on Saturday helping load and unload trams that would shuttle fans from one side of the track to the other. The best part of the job was taking a break for dinner, where we were able to watch part of the race right on the track. It’s amazing how fast (and LOUD) those cars are. It was a great experience.

Dylan's blog, Watching the Rolex 24, ERAU, Daytona, Admissions

Watching the Rolex 24 as the cars speed by

Also, my friends and I have taken up a new hobby: surfing. All of us have really wanted to learn since coming down to Florida in August, but we didn’t really know where to start during the first semester. About two weeks ago, we did some research, drove down to a local surf shop and purchased some surfboards. Ever since, we have spent almost every minute of our free time at the beach learning how to surf. Let me tell you, it is not as easy as it looks. Like any sport it takes a lot of practice and determination (not to mention an amazing amount of core strength) to master. But after last weekend, I feel like I’m starting to get the hang of it.

Driving down the beach, ERAU, Daytona, Admissions

Driving down the beach on a sunny Sunday afternoon, ready to surf.

More to come on surfing, flying, and Embry-Riddle in my next entry, stay tuned!

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About Dylan

Name: Dylan Johnston
Major: Aeronautical Science
Minor: Applied Meteorology
Hometown: Seattle, Washington
Career Goals: To have a successful career as a pilot in the Airline Industry; becoming a captain for a major airline and flying internationally.
Activities: WIKD Radio, Skydiving Club. Avid golfer, Frisbee expert and body surfing master.

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