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PIP Program Was Rewarding Summer Job

Greg Slisz '09 - My time spent working in the PIP program over the last eight weeks has been both an educational and rewarding experience. While I will admit that I originally took this position because it sounded like a fun alternative to the dreaded summer job, I can honestly say that not only have I learned a great deal more in these eight weeks than I have in my previous two years of summer employment, but I have also had a great deal more fun researching a topic that I truly found interesting.

For my project, which focused on the Oscar Robertson-led Crispus Attucks basketball team of 1955, I was able to meet a number of very interesting people and see some cool primary documents relating to my topic. I was also able to read some interesting books as well as watch a movie that all pertained to my topic. Every step of this process was extremely informative and enjoyable. My favorite memory of the eight weeks was probably my trip to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame, where I was fortunate enough to receive preferential treatment and even receive admittance into the back rooms into which the public is not allowed. I also learned a great deal about interacting with people. As an introvert, I was very nervous going into most of my interviews, but I would also say that these interviews were some of the most rewarding and interesting portions of the past eight weeks.

Ultimately, the most rewarding part of the Present Indiana Program for me has been the movie which I was able to create. It served as a final compilation and culmination of all my work, and through the involved process of making a movie I really began to take a great deal of ownership over the short film. In addition to learning indispensable digital movie-making skills, I also was finally able to appreciate the joy and pride that filmmakers have for their created works. While my movie was short and definitely not on a professional level, it still felt great to be able to take something tangible away from this eight weeks.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the Present Indiana Program and would strongly recommend the program to other students who are looking for an independent research opportunity as an alternative to a boring summer job.