LEVI McPHERSON, a graduate student of analytical chemistry at the University of North Central Florida, is approached by agents of the Homeland Security’s Counter-terrorism Unit. The agency is recruiting Lee to study and expose the loopholes of screening instruments in airports. Struggling financially, he accepted the offer, making him a paid, benevolent hacker of the nation’s gateway. Yet Levi is horrified when an Airbus from Los Angeles disintegrated in mid-air.

At 40, when everybody’s career trajectory is going up, Levi’s still a poor graduate student, struggling financially. His research projects however, are worth million dollars. Researching the highly classified and heavily guarded secrets of detecting traces of explosives, what Lee know was a goldmine. The agency's offer is his financial break . So Levi tackles the problem like a scientist, detailing the loopholes of the aviation security and turning what he knew into a big time money machine.

JIM and JONATHAN of the counter-terrorism unit, where nowhere to be found after Charlotte International Airport, a hub of Delta Airlines closed abruptly because of instrument malfunctions in their security lines. And in a post-Osama Bin Laden’s era, the biggest blow to the United Stated after the 9/11 disaster comes unexpectedly when a passenger plane blew up in the skies of Washington D.C., in the heart of the nation.

Levi knew it was only the start of more troubles, so he recruits his fellow graduate students to counter the future attacks. They have to think like criminals—and scientists too. With the help of FBI counter-terrorism experts, Homeland Security and Transportation Security Agency, the team races to close and plug the loopholes Lee identified.

Friday, August 1, 2008

University of Florida, #1 (Party School)

From the Gainesville Sun:

The University of Florida is the nation’s top party school, completing a rise in the Princeton Review rankings that coincided with efforts to reduce alcohol abuse.

The No. 1 party school ranking appears in the 2009 edition of the review’s annual guide to colleges, which goes on sale Tuesday. The guide’s rankings are based on survey results from about 120,000 students at 368 colleges.

read more here.

This proves that the school were I'm at now doing my graduate studies, is always on top of the food chain. We know how to have a good time. It's Florida, the palm trees, the beaches, bikinis and the sun, what can you ask for more?

The rating to top the distinction as a party school is fueled by the back to back national championships in basketball and at the same year, football champions. No doubt everybody agrees with me.

It was 2 AM when my friends went home after celebrating the first ever NCAA trophy in basketball last 2006. The following morning, I was groggy while teaching the chemistry laboratory. Then one of my student begged to dismissed the class early, after all, we were the national champions. No doubt she was celebrating last night at the University Avenue.

We are Florida, the party animals, when there is something to celebrate.

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