Arrived here in North Carolina last night at the Raleigh-Durham airport. My younger sister was waiting for me and as soon as we picked up my luggage we headed to her apartment in Chapel Hill. Woke up early today and went to my first (and only) meeting with the chair of the School of Information and Library Science at UNC. My sister had set up the meeting for me and I must admit I wasn’t too sure if I wanted to spend the time to talk to someone from a department that had the word “library” in it. Turns out the “information” part plays a major role in their program, albeit you could still pursue a career in the library science field if you want to. After asking the standard questions about the program, deadlines, and financial aid I was advised to take a few minutes and speak to one of the professors involved in the program who was very involved with bioinformatics and genomics. The 10-minute meeting was ok but I felt that he wasn’t very interested in talking to me and was just trying to get me to leave. I quickly gave him a rundown of my interests and as he gave me some information a name came up: Catherine Blake. I figured I’d spend another 10 minutes and get some feedback from her and hope she’d be a bit more social. Man, what a difference!!! She was absolutely amazing, taking the time to not only answer my questions but also extract some information from me so she could point me to the right direction. She seemed to be just as passionate about her work (apparently she’s huge in text mining and medical informatics) and we ended up talking for at least a great 30 minutes. Tomorrow I have 3 more meetings scheduled with different folks from the computer science and genetics departments but I must tell you; she has definitely tipped the scale in favor of her department. About 5 minutes after we left her office, as my sister and I are walking toward where my sister works, Catherine caught up with us to give us some more incite about the financial aid process that she thought would be beneficial to me. Icing in the cake! After a huge lunch at the local hang-out place we went back home and spent the rest of the day talking and fixing her laptop. Around 7pm we went to see “Sideways” which definitely deserves a post of its own. Great movie!!!