Computer Science Personal Statement

Electronics and Computing play a central role in our society by offering technological solutions for many of our most pressing problems. For those who do not take the time to understand these technologies, our increasing reliance on it may seem scary. For those of us who recognise technology for what it is, the manifestation of humanity’s will to logically and methodically consider the application of every new tool or process, gaining a thorough understanding becomes not only an inspiring, but ultimately an essential, task. It is this logical and methodical approach that most appeals to me about studying these forms of technology at undergraduate level. Having always enjoyed mathematically based subjects, I have found that I have excelled throughout AS- and A-level Mathematics. In order to broaden my knowledge, I have also been teaching myself Vedic Mathematics in my spare time and have also read T.H.Cormen’s Introduction to Algorithms, gaining new perspectives on more in-depth elements of the field. Mathematics is a process which leads to a definitive answer. As such, it appeals to me as someone who appreciates the beauty of the process and the final result. Applying these same methodical processes within A-level Electronics and Physics has also shown me how this abstract beauty can directly impact on our lives by creating new technologies.

The application of mathematical principles, which lies at the heart of computing and electronic engineering, becomes even more apparent outside the classroom. During a work placement with a multi-national engineering company, I was given the opportunity to create a computer program with to calculate the required thickness of a pipe in order to handle certain pressure levels. This was a perfect example of how computer modelling could has ever-increasing practical application within the physical world and demonstrated to me the importance of accuracy and attention to detail in using these forms of technology within industry. Taking part in the national Student Robotics competition, organised by the University of Southampton, also demonstrated the myriad applications of computer science and electronic engineering in this growing field. As the Lead Programmer for my school team, I was responsible for overseeing the programming of our robot using Python, and the design and production of components, such as an infra-red emitter and receiver. Achieving the Gold Crest Award in this competition inspired an ongoing interest in the field of robotics, artificial intelligence and nanotechnology, which I have explored through further reading in my spare time.

Alongside this additional reading, I have also attended a number of Master Classes offered by Cambridge University in the fields of Mathematics and Computer Science, which have expanded on the more complex elements of these subjects. Applying knowledge gained from my studies, I have used my spare time to increase my knowledge of programming by building a simple OS with I/O functions using C. Inspired by the increasing usability of CGI programs I have also begun learning to use Autodesk MAYA, creating a simple 3D game. Through this self-teaching, I have learnt that patience and dedication are central in a field which relies heavily on accuracy and attention to detail.

Patience and dedication have also characterised my extra-curricular activities outside my chosen field. As a member of my local Lawn Tennis Club, I currently hold second place in the league, while I am also the current chess champion of my school and have pushed myself to compete at a national level. These activities, alongside undertaking my Gold Duke of Edinburgh award, have shown me that I possess the required ambition and perseverance to achieve any goals that I set myself.