Prompt: What is an interest or passion that you have?
People love to complain about how “useless” mathematics is in everyday life:
•“How will cubic factoring help me get my dream job?”
•“How is the quadratic formula going to stop global warming?”
If not mathematics, they often set their sights on physics or chemistry:
•“How can the coefficient of static friction fix our nation’s multi-trillion dollar debt?
•“What does Gibbs free energy have to do with anything?”
Again, no surprise — I hear students ask these exact questions all the time. Don’t listen to them.
Science — math, physics, chemistry, and engineering — is everything. At each and every level of interaction or motion, far more is at work than what meets the eye. Little do they know, the complainers, that their voices, the same voices that scoff at the teaching of sciences in schools, underestimate the complexity of the many phenomena at work even in speaking a single syllable. Whether it be sound resonance, as in the case of this vocal protesting, or some related occurrence, science is unavoidable, and undeniably important.
Even when nobody else would think to, I have learned to take science by the reins and embrace it. Science can be implemented in even the simplest actions. For example, when walking around a corner during a normal day of high school, I may appear to be simply easing my way around the bend, but in reality I am taking the derivative of my curvature on an imaginary xy-plane and predicting the average change in my direction per second, all the while ocularly dissecting the nearby bologna sandwich in my buddy’s hand and calculating its concentration in parts per billion of sodium.
All kidding aside, science has fascinated me from a very young age, when I often would stare in awe at jets soaring through the air or spin heedlessly with my arms held out in an attempt to lift off like a helicopter. The urge to know just how something works, whether it be a simple windup matchbox car or the swift blades of a military aircraft, has always radiated within me, a drive which builds upon itself, inspiring intangible thoughts to become physical creations and applications. In recent years, this motivation has led to working with lawnmower engines, spinner trimmer engines, fishing reels, electrical water pumps; still, in the future, I foresee that there will be no boundaries on this pursuit. I will be able to delve into machines, vehicles, engines, and all the rest. Only time will tell where this pathway paved with passion and interest and, yes, equations will lead me.