Do for the remainder of this essay. Before I

Do you want to warp reality? Do you want to go beyond
standard conventions? Do you want to become yourself? These are the fundamental
questions I sought an answer for myself when considered my college options. After
hearing about it from a classmate who wanted to pursue Actuarial Sciences, I
have to say, UPenn grew on me really quickly in these regards. I felt as if the
College of Arts and Sciences was the right match for these questions, and if
were to really explore my intellectual interests, there would be no better
place than the University of Pennsylvania.

But I think we’d be going nowhere if I just gushed over the
place for the remainder of this essay. Before I talk about how UPenn can accommodate
my interests, it’d be better if I gave a brief outline of them. In short: I’m
an aspiring theoretical physicist. My interests always involved studying more
about physics and mathematics in my free time while participating in contests
to test my grasp on the subject. Along with fairly decent results with a
distinction in the Euclid Mathematics contest, 2nd place in the RIT
Dubai Mathematics contest, and attaining the 3rd rank in the UAE for
the IPhO qualifiers, I’ve also explored my interests in more ‘unconventional
ways’. I constantly spend my free time cooking up theories of nature, and while
they’re not official research projects, the one which I’m most proud of is the
separation of the universe into layers of Energy in a theory which I dubbed ‘The
Energy Layer’ theory.

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However, I’m not conceited enough to claim that my theory is
something impressive. At its current form, it stands on no experimental grounds
and can be dismissed as a 17 year old’s mere imagination. But I’d be damned if that
was the end! As I said in the beginning, I’ve always wanted to redefine reality
by going beyond conventional knowledge and that’s where UPenn comes in. If I
have to explore my interests even further, I’d need a firm background on the
fundamentals of Physics, and the College of Arts and Sciences, with its Physics
course fits my needs more than ideally. Its concentrations on ‘Physical Theory
and Experimental Technique’ and the possibility of entering the Honors program
coupled with research guidance under a faculty member serves as an outlet for
not only strengthening my understanding of Physics, but also as a means for
furthering my interests in research. The events don’t lie either! It’s clear
that the College of Arts and Sciences has already been a part of groundbreaking
international research operations, with the most recent example being the
upcoming colloquium on January 17 on the Dark Energy Survey (A crucial topic
for those who want to understand the universe) of which UPenn was a vital
member.

As the late Billy Mays said, “But wait, there’s more!” How
could I talk about research opportunities without mentioning CURF? The option
of either working under seniors and faculty members or to dive into your own
research projects as an undergraduate reminds me of a choose-your-own adventure
book. Personally, while I do seek to carve a new path, I feel as if I need to
develop my foundations in research before jumping in head first, and hence
would seek to learn and work at the same time.  At the same time, I’d also want to
academically challenge myself, and UPenn’s Physics honors courses would be an
amazing option to enrich myself academically.

In conclusion, UPenn provides something which others can’t.
It’s strong interplay and integration of research with its Honors Program for
undergraduates, along with its emphasis on the freedom of choice in
undergraduate research caters to my intellectual and academic needs. If I truly
want to make a difference in the world, and let my interests thrive, I don’t I’d
settle for anything but UPenn’s College of Arts and Sciences.

 

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I'm Joan!

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