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"Cerebral high school science" - Stanford Essay Intellectual vitality


Doom 13 / 37 2  
Dec 22, 2010   #1
hey guys, this is the first stanford essay prompt.
I would love some feedback, imput, anything you have to say about my essay :)

As always, thanks in advance!

Stanford students are widely known to possess a sense of intellectual vitality. Tell us about an idea or an experience you have had that you find intellectually engaging.

What can be assembled from a broken-down bicycle, a decaying 90's CPU, and a rusted circuit board?
For me, high school science seems almost entirely cerebral: a process of identifying a problem and through reciting a set of tediously memorized, obtaining a fixed solution.

However, for me, the significance and value of a theory always lies in its application, where it truly demonstrates its benefit. So when I first heard about the engineering program with an emphasis on renewable energy production, I was instantly intrigued.

Immediately, the first concept that came to mind was hydroelectricity. Singapore is a country that experiences continuous rain, and if even a fraction was harnessed, significant amounts of energy could be generated.

However, the only materials I was given were rusted parts from an old refuse bin. I could not simply rely on a pencil and paper to find the solution. The parts wouldn't simply magically assemble themselves into a micro hydroelectric generator once a few formulas were written down.

Rather than relying on uninspiring definitions, innovation and unconventional thinking was required.
A turbine could be constructed from a run-down bicycle wheel, a computer fan could be used as the rotor, a commutator could be constructed from diodes from the circuit board...

While these answers were certainly unorthodox, they were effective, and this to me epitomizes the true purpose of science. It is not the mathematical calculations or the chemical equations that makes for riveting science, but rather it is their application to real life. This is why I am pursuing engineering: a subject where the theoretical meets the practical; where concepts become reality.
melkorthefoul 13 / 31  
Dec 22, 2010   #2
What can be assembled from a broken-down bicycle, a decaying 90's CPU, and a rusted circuit board

I dont know... why don't you tell me?

tediously memorized, obtaining a fixed solution.

Looks like you missed a word there

So when I first heard about an engineering program

Not bad, otherwise... you might even reach my level of excellence in a while :P
OP Doom 13 / 37 2  
Dec 22, 2010   #3
How are you so fast at responding!

The first line is meant to be rhetorical, revealed later from the essay. Although im pretty sure you knew that, im just making sure... :D

"tediously memorized formulae, obtaining a fixed solution"

Your praise, erm, flatters me?! :D

Mmh, do you think i should change the tone of the essay? any other flaws you can spot?
k3148sh 2 / 2  
Dec 22, 2010   #4
I think you put too much break between your paragraphs... (maybe if each enter equals to a new paragraph). There are unnecessarily too many paragraphs.. So why don't you combine some paragraphs into one? This essay would be better if it flows more smoothly.

However, I really like that you put a rhetorical question in the beginning... It makes me wonder what you are going to write in the next part!:)
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jan 2, 2011   #5
However, for me, the significance and value of a theory always lies in its application, where it truly demonstrates its benefit.

---I like the first sentence of the essay a lot! It is sort of intriguing... but when I get to this sentence (above), I... I want to kill this sentence. It is too obvious. It has a lot of words, and they all amount to nothing. This is a bad, bad sentence. ;-) But the essay has some great energy to it... and you are clever to use interesting words like magically and harnessed... you are a good writer!!


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