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Stanford Intellectual Vitality Supplement Essay-String Theory


sonrisa247 3 / 7  
Dec 27, 2009   #1
Hi, this is my first Stanford Supplement Essay. I would greatly appreciate any constructive criticism. Thank you!

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.

This past fall, Harvey Mudd College had a phenomenal lecture series that was open to the public. Since Harvey Mudd is near my house, two months ago I attended a Friday night lecture given by Brian Greene, a Professor of theoretical physics at Columbia University and a well-known proponent of the string theory. With only a month of physics under my belt, I knew little about theoretical physics but was intrigued by this strange branch of science. From the first two minutes of the presentation, I was captivated and I'm sure at one point my jaw must have dropped; upon entering the lecture hall, I had not expected this hour long discussion to change my entire perception of the universe and its inner workings. I discovered that the string theory unified Einstein's theory of general relativity and quantum mechanics and hypothesized that the universe is comprised of multi-dimensional miniscule vibrating strings that create the richness and variety of every particle in the universe. Brian Greene explained that these strings were smaller than quarks and operated in not only the three traditional dimensions, but in ten dimensions. While the string theory was a novel concept to me, it was logical and conformed with my understanding of the cosmos. Upon leaving the lecture hall, I was brimming with enthusiasm and soon dashed home to further research the theory. I am a religious person, but I doubt God magically created the world with a wave of his hand. I believe God created the world in accordance with the natural laws that govern the universe, and that the string theory seeks to explain those natural laws. Through this superb opportunity I have had some of my philosophical questions answered and gained a greater appreciation for physics and its power.
justbee 3 / 9  
Dec 28, 2009   #2
I think the essay is fantastic! It shows that you not only have depth of knowledge, but also demonstrates very genuine enthusiasm.

While I completely agree with your perspective on God and the Universe, I don't think it's absolutely necessary for the essay, and God is generally a touchy subject. It's at your discretion.

the universe is comprised of multi-dimensional minisculeminuscule vibrating strings
hzia2002 2 / 7  
Dec 28, 2009   #3
the overall impression is good but im kind of confused by this sentence.

From the first two minutes of the presentation, I was captivated and I'm sure at one point my jaw must have dropped; upon entering the lecture hall, I had not expected this hour long discussion to change my entire perception of the universe and its inner workings

did you put that semi-colon their by mistake because i think they are two unrelated sentences ( i may be totally wrong!)
kldini 12 / 62  
Dec 28, 2009   #4
Fantastic essay!
Great word-choice and so on. The only thing I suggest is to keep God out of this. Although it may help, by showing that you are a full-faith student (religious), it may not help. Sometimes (and sometimes I meant) God and science don't go together. But this is just my opinion.

Don't use contractions in this type of essay (only if very necessary) "I'm sure at one point"

"must have dropped; upon..." I suggest, just as hzia2002, to use a period in place of this semi-colon.

"Through this superb opportunity I have..." I would use a comma there.

Great job!

Hope I helped!
Read mines please:
Bowdoin supplemental essay...
FPU and Pepperdine...
Thanks in advance.
poisonivy 14 / 102  
Dec 28, 2009   #5
Ahh the famous Brian Greene! I'm applying to Columbia :)
The essay is flawless. Just one thing, if I were in your place, I would mention something about Stanford too, since that is the school you are applying, not Columbia. This is just a suggestion anyways. nice job!

I would be happy if you could read few of my posts, if you have time :)


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