Geek of the Week: Carolyn Nichols, Junior, Civil

Some geeks are socially silent. They pass by a conversation unnoticed, leaving only a few dusty, orange Cheeto fingerprints stuck to any surface they touched. But there is another type of geek. These geeks will readily join in on any discussion about physics, Star Wars, or any other nerdy topic of interest. Some of these geeks even manage to find the courage to begin conversations with other people. But CSM junior Carolyn Nichols has taken this to a new level. She is the sort of geek who announces her presence with a loud squeal and a running tackle-hug. Apparently, this Civil Engineer didn’t get the memo that geeks do not know how to talk to people.

[Oredigger:] What’s the best aspect of your major?
[Nichols:] You get to work outside of a building. I sometimes think I’m a solar panel. I get my energy from the sun.

What’s the most annoying part about Civil Engineering?
Since it’s an engineering specialty, I have to take classes in things I don’t think really apply to my major, like Circuits. I could get everything I need to know about circuits in a one day lecture: “don’t touch the wires.” Or [classes like] Programming Concepts. Why?!?

Are you a geek and why?
Yes. I’m a big Zelda geek. I geek out about certain things. Like Zelda. And I’m a geek hugger.

What’s been your favorite class at Mines?
I really love Statics and Phys I. You get a set of equations, you learn how to use them, and you figure out how to manipulate them to solve the puzzle. I like how it was easily applied and could visualize what was going on. Not just the equations, but what they really meant. I ended up doing the Phys I homework just for fun.

What’s the best part about being at Mines?
All the like-minded people. You can totally just nerd out in the middle of dinner and people will just join in. It’s awesome. And then you have Zelda fans who have Zelda parties… where else do you have Lego parties at sleepovers? They never have enough wall pieces in Lego sets…

Do you have any accomplishments that you’re particularly proud of?
I got all the figures in “The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap!”

“Pokémon” or “Yu-Gi-Oh?”
“Yu-Gi-Oh” because I never played “Pokémon” and I watched “Yu-Gi-Oh.”

Do you have any plans for the future?
I want to graduate on time and I want to work in Australia or [someplace] overseas. I want to be outside in nature. The only drawback is I have to wear sunscreen. I want to see the world. I want to go to Asia… I want to travel. And I want all sons [in my family]. I want my husband to have to give them “the talk,” so I don’t have to [tell them].

If you could be dropped into any fictional setting, what would it be and why?
A good, traditional mystical forest. You’re a princess, but you’re a warrior princess… so you can save yourself, but you can give the guy a chance to do it. You can do magic without wands… and you’ve got to love the clothes. Flowery dresses, but still functional. You’ve gotta love a good, hooded cape too.

Do you have any advice for fellow geeks and Mines students?
Don’t do homework the night before. You stay up late and you’re like “uuuh!” Two nights before isn’t bad. You can’t ask people for help the night before either.

What’s the best pick-up line you can think of?
Well, the best pick-up line is the turtle pick-up line, but you have to be able to see that one. The second best line is “If I could rearrange the alphabet, I’d put ‘U’ and ‘I’ together,” countered by the girl saying “Well, I like it how it is, with ‘N’ and ‘O’ together.” Something the girl can counter easily.

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