Dan Luu '15

So recently we (the people at Holy Cross) got another break. It was Easter break and I got some time off to lollygag and I spent that time mostly playing games with my friends and connecting with them. I went out with one of my really good friend’s Kevin to eat Mexican food and later have bubble tea (really odd combination, I know). Then break ended, and the Sunday before I came back, my mom made a nice vietnamese meal for me complimented by Paris by Night. For those of you who don’t know what “Paris by Night” is, (here’s the wikipedia aritcle) it is basically this live comedy show that the Vietnamese people hold and make fun of daily things. A bit similar to a minstrel show or SNL, with a live set and a lot of sketch comedy.

As a first generation student growing up, I grew up with this on the TV that my parents and grandma would watch to get a laugh out of and it was there way of entertainment. I only watched a clip with my mum and I felt a bittersweet nostalgia in the back of my head. I was eating this really good Vietnamese food, yet I was looking back at when when my mom yelled at me to eat my veggies and yelling at me to eat more fruit (she still does) and all of our heated arguments with each other as I was growing up (I still am growing). I was younger back then and only watching and not really enjoying Paris by Night and would go through tantrums, whine, and complain how it was boring. When I look back though, I didn’t have the patience to put up with it to make my mum happy and I didn’t really see her being all alone as she is now (with my sister in college this year, my mom is home alone and just works all day). So I’ve changed in a sense where I can go to temple without throwing a huge fit and will sit through it for the sake of my mum and I’ll put up with her yelling at me to eat more and listen to what she has to say. I really love my mom and wish I could do something more to show her I really appreciate her work aside from just my grades, but I guess my little gestures she’d appreciate. My mum, if you didn’t know, is basically a super mom and has a done a whole lot for me and my sister despite our circumstances. I’ll have more to write about her later.

Artichoke soup, asparagus and mushrooms, garlic and salmon in some kind of special sauce, and chicken in a special delicious sauce all eaten with rice (when I say special, I mean I don’t know the exact name of the sauces that my mom puts into these things to make them good).

All of this thinking and me being introspective (sort-of) got me thinking how much time has flown by and I don’t even know what I was doing Easter break last year with my time and how so much has changed. The classes are still tough, there seems to be more deadlines than from what I remember last year, and there are much more different things in my life now than last year. The person who I’d just occasionally talk to across the hall from where I’d live last year is now my roommate, the person who I knew nothing about in the beginning of last summer is now one of my closest friends whom I know much more about, and my RA this year who grew from someone who shared a few mutual interests with me to someone where I hold tea/wine/jazz sessions with and moved my desk in his room. These three people (and my professors) have probably made my Holy Cross life much more enriched and entertaining from last year, so I’d just like to thank them, the three J’s, J-man, J-dawg, and J-son. Then there is also my SO, T, who has put with my shenanigans for three years now and she’s probably shaped me more than anyone else through my time on the hill.

I’ll have more posts about my mum, the three Js, and the SO to come later. I hope you enjoyed a wonderful Easter weekend for those of you who are Christian, and just a normal weekend for everyone else who doesn’t celebrate a bunny and egg day, or just a break.



So this post was sitting in my draft folder for awhile, and I never realized I haven’t published it. It’s long overdue so here is a summary of my trip to New Orleans the SfN conference:


I woke up to go to to the airport on Saturday October 13th and expected to land in New Orleans around 3PM. However, as I was trying to get lunch between my connecting flight in Texas, I missed my flight to New Orleans and I had to wait for around two hours before they could schedule my to the next flight. That sucked to start off the conference in such a way, however I eventually got to New Orleans and when I got out of the airport, it was hot. I took a shuttle to the conference and the bus driver was nice enough to give us a little tour and talk about some of the history behind New Orleans, and then I was dropped off at my hotel.

Once I’ve arrived at the hotel, I texted my lab mate Jess to see where she was and we met up and then I walked out with her and her fellow awardees to go around and explore New Orleans. No science yet, but we went around and explored the city walking to Bourbon Street, walked by Bubba GUmp Shrimp and then headed to a bar around the French Quarter and went into a bar to listen to some nice jazz and music and have a general good time (this is also coming from someone who doesn’t drink). The night ended up with me being pretty exhausted from the flight, walking, and excitement in the air. I crashed.

My new friends who hung out with Jess and me for the rest of SfN. We all talked about our research projects and just how general lab life is as an undergraduate student.

When I woke up, Sunday is all about science…mostly. Jess and I headed to the huge conference center and saw all that was going on, we attended talks with Professor Webster and then we had down time which Jess and I took to attending all the booths at SfN and in hopes getting all the free stuff we could. After that we later went around for lunch and walked to the Superdome and back. Then the day ends with Jess and I presenting our research at SfN’s undergraduate poster session. Later that night we all went out and around again eating at places around the French Quarter and having beignets at Cafe Du Monde (as shown below)

Dinner at Huck Finns after all that science

Cafe Du Monde

The following day, Monday, was our last day and Jess and I went to our final rounds of booths and I got to play the piano and wore these gloves that showed what I was playing and it was pretty cool. Jess and I also went to some final talks and poster sessions where we tried to find a poster that seemed the most fitting and one where we’d understand the easiest. We then had lunch with our professor and then flew back. I was on a separate flight, and after that it was just sleep before classes the next day.

The trip to New Orleans was amazing and probably one of the best experiences I’ve had hear so far. I’m really thankful to my professor for letting me do research with her and the summer program for giving me funding and allowing me to go. I’ve met so many cool people and talked about really interesting neuroscience while exploring the streets of New Orleans. It was all really fun and I hope to go again one day. This concludes my trip and I hope you enjoyed it!

P.S Pictures were mostly taken on Jess’s camera or mine and they may or may not be in chronological order.



Hey guys,

I apologize for not posting as often in the last month, I can’t believe it has been that long since I’ve posted. Let’s update you on somethings.

– Applications are all in!

– I got into the Biological Psychology Concentration! (I’m really excited to be a part of it)

-Had many exams

This is one of my few down times at the moment but I hope everyone is well. My spring break consisted of just playing games and meeting up with my friends to marathon one of my favorite shows, One Piece. I also spent some time eating sushi and other non-Holy Cross related food. After I got back, I had two exams and then another one two days ago (March 19th). Research is still going and that never ends, but as for other work it just seems to constantly go. I don’t remember having so many weeks with this much work last year.

Anyways, that is my update for now, Later!

Best Wishes,


Hi everyone,

I’m so sorry I haven’t been posting as much because to be frank, it has been crazy because I am applying to a lot of summer programs. Before you go, “wait, Dan, you’re not going to be doing research again? Why?” hear me out. There are a few reasons as to why I’m not doing research at Holy Cross this summer; the first is that professor Webster is not running her lab this summer for her own reasons, which wouldn’t let me stay anyways. I was deciding not to do summer research before I heard this anyways, because I would like to do something else. I am applying to other awesome research (not to say that my research isn’t awesome, it is) areas with programs around my area and in California. I want to mainly branch out and experience other aspects of research and not limit myself to my possibilities. Even though I may not get into these programs and don’t really have a back-up, I just want to see where I can get in and hope I will. So this is really keeping my weeks really busy along with my own classes.

So far I’ve had an application due, exam, and a draft for my paper all due today. It’s been crazy, and next week is the week before spring break which will also be pretty hectic as well. I’m working on my final applications to submit to summer programs and I hope I can get into them, otherwise I think I’ll be taking summer classes to get rid of some more common area requirements. Once Spring break comes I’m going to be going to NURDs (Northeast Undergraduate Research and Development) conference to present my work from the summer. I’m excited for that, but not ecstatic with all of the other things that I have going on. Well that’s a quick update from me, back to studying, writing, and applying.



Hi everyone,

So I’m back at the HC and just had my first class today (Physiological Psychology) and I found it really interesting. I’m going to be going to my second class very shortly (Cell Biology) and then that will put an end to the first day of classes. I got back to school and caught up with my friends J-man and J-son, and soon to catch up with my other buddy J-Dawg (I know a lot of J’s). Some new things I’ve been doing this semester so far (as in 1 day) has just been working out with J-Man and hopefully we’ll lift much more often than we did last semester. We’ve started Club J, a Jazz club for relaxation where we have  tea and others beverages, and we listen to my awesome jazz selections while talking about all our problems. So far so good.

I also have to constantly remind myself that I need work harder this semester to bring up the grades and study more.  (personal note that I’m writing to remind myself…). Things I also need to do are work on my summer applications for places I would like to go and then do some more of my lab stuff. I’m currently back in my lab room and I’m really glad to be back, caught up with Professor Webster a bit and soothing sound of our fish tank is relaxing my mind as I write this.

I’m feel a bit better, slightly more hopeful for the semester to bring up my grades and now I need to get to class. Going to try and make it work so that it all goes well!

Best Wishes,


Here’s a snappy Saturday Morning Breakfast about school that made me chortle

Hi everyone,

I hope all is going well with your new year in whatever you are doing. I sometimes wonder what my readers do for fun aside from all the spam that I get. I’d like to tell you about my worries today.

Like I said before I’ll share with you guys everything (Almost) about my grades and see how someone like me can go where I go and what I do. Right now I’m not too optimistic about getting into medical school with the crummy grades I got this last semester (mainly from psychology) so I shall present to you, my grades this semester

Psychology – C

Genetics – B

Organic Chemistry 2- B

Sociology – A-

My GPA for the term was a 2.94 (I know terrible) and my Cumulative GPA is a 3.13 right now

So I need at least a 3.5 to consider applying to schools in my point of view (not to mention a very good MCAT score). With that being said, I’ll need straight As throughout the next 3 semesters to bring my GPA to a 3.5. I’ll see what I can do with the coming semesters and will definitely work harder. I hope that I don’t have such a bad experience as my psychology class this semester. So there are my grades for now, we’ll see how I do with the new year and semester.

Best Wishes,


Well guys, I’m into my second half as a sophomore now and it’s the new year! What are some of your new year resolutions?

Mine has been the same as always, get better grades, work out more, and continue to improve my networking and connections. This break I’m going to be trying to look for a new job, hopefully more related to hospital work (if I can find one). What are some of your new year resolutions? I hope you all got into college or start forming your decisions and have an idea of what you want to do or at least get an idea of where you want to go. There have been a lot of ups and downs this year especially with life outside of HC and life inside the HC.

Some highlights of the year:

  • Have an awesome research professor and got to go to New Orleans
  • Met a bunch of new people who have been a huge impact in my life
  • Had great professors in my classes
  • Finding an awesome community around my games
  • Still have an amazing relationship with my SO and friends from high school
  • Becoming a TA for the biology department, pretty awesome.

Not so awesome events

  • Did very poorly this semester (but that will be a blog in of itself soon enough-> finished the year with a 3.1, below a 3 for the semester)
  • One of my close friends lost someone very close to him
  • Not being able to get in as much of a workout as I wanted
  • Not being able to do more community service work with Lions and just in general.

I don’t really have much else to say, but that I will hope to get another post out soon!

Happy New Year!


Hey everyone, just wanted to say good luck to everyone who is applying. I’ve met two perspectives so far who I think would do wonderfully here at Holy Cross (and even applied Early Decision!) I’m hoping that they get in as I think that they would be very beneficial to the Sader Nation and the campus. If you read this blog please update me on how you are doing! If you haven’t submitted your application yet, then good luck and the same thing if you already have and waiting to hear on admissions.
And don’t forget to email me if you get in or if you have just any general questions about Holy Cross at ddluu@g.holycross.edu

Best Wishes everyone.

Hey everyone, happy everything!

I just wanted to update you on a few things, with life on the hill and at home.

So everything that has been going on in my life has been crazy busy. I recently got out of a three week of non stop exams, papers, and a bunch of assignments to do and the last week before break was my only week where I didn’t have so much to do. What I have been usually doing for fun and relaxing is playing games with J-man or visiting my lady friend down at Wellesley. My thanksgiving went really well, I went over to my god-sister and boyfriend’s house by myself (didn’t have it with my family) and it was a “no-adults thanksgiving”. I had a blast there playing a bunch of boardgames and just a lot of funny stories being shared in general.

I’m now back at Sader campus and I have just a few weeks left and then the semester is already over! Everyone is probably gearing up for these last few weeks as the final hurrah and to get it over with for finals and etc. I’ll see if I can make one more update before the semester ends.

I haven’t really got much else to say besides hope that  everyone had a good thanksgiving and enjoying your time off and work hard on whatever you’re doing.

Well, what are you doing?!
This weekend is parents weekend along with a few Halloween parties, so some of my friends’ parents are coming down to have some fun (my mom isn’t though). I have done a lot since the last post, with mainly going to the Society for Neuroscience conference, and attending the Summer Research Symposium.The Research symposium was awesome and I got to present and talk to other professors and students who were interested in fly genetics looking at pretty flies. I really enjoyed my research experience over the summer and I really would like to thank my Professor (Professor Webster) for taking a freshman like me into her lab and getting to learn so many things.

My lab mate and friend Jess, Professor Webster, and myself.

As for the academic work and other things, I’ve made some new friends. I’m really close to my lab mate, Jess which I call her “J-dwag” and we have lunches together and talk about things. I”m also really good friends with my RA Jeremy , I call him “J-man”, and we have tea times together and play some computer games (starcarft) on the weekends. My roommate is also pretty good too, we’ve been playing Super Smash Brothers on the N64. The intro biology lab I TA in is also really awesome and the I like the students in there along with the lab instructor (who is also coincidentally my Genetics professor).

As for my classes, they aren’t doing so well (well as in B’s for me) with intro to  Psychology as my worst class (I had a really terrible grade for my first exam and quizzes). Although my sociology class is my best class so far and I’m doing well in it. I have a lot of work to do now though so I’ll leave you with that. Enjoy your Halloween and I’ll give you another post about my time in New Orleans at the Society for Neuroscience.

Also remember if you have any questions for question Fridays, you can comment with them or email me at ddluu15@g.holycross.edu! And I will try to answer them to the best of my abilities.