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I wanted to be an astronaut. Caltech's opportunities and resources, supplement essay


karanbhullar 3 / 13 5  
Dec 24, 2013   #1
This is my essay for Caltech on the topic: Scientific exploration clearly excites you (otherwise you wouldn't be applying to Caltech). What is it about Caltech's opportunities and resources that will best fuel your intellectual curiosity and develop your passion for science, technology, math or engineering? (500 words max)

Please comment.
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I remember convincing my father to buy me a telescope when I was young so that I can look at the moon and the stars and pretend to be a young scientist. Since my childhood I wanted to be an astronaut.

I was curious as to how all these Heavenly bodies were there just wandering about so perfectly. Questions like "How the universe was formed?", "Why do planets move?", "Where does sun come from?", etc were always in the back of my mind. None of my family member or friends could give me answers so i took to research. I started reading articles on the internet related to space and astronomy. I learned various new things on the internet, some of them very useful. And it was then that i started my habit of reading.

As I read more and more I came to know about the big bang theory and the creation of the universe. We were taught that atom is indivisible various number of times, but then in high school came nucleons and that concept was trashed. The knowledge of subatomic particles got me wondering and i found out about the standard model of particle physics ,or the sub subatomic particles as i call them, namely the quarks, leptons, bosons, etc. All the particles in the standard model were acceptable but the one thing that caught my eye was the Higgs boson or the supposedly 'god particle'. I was fascinated by it as it would explain the origin of mass according to the standard model.

I wanted to learn more about the particle and i came to know about CERN and their experiment with the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). I became interested in the research. It became a goal in my life to do research at CERN as i wanted to learn more and more things in the field of particle physics. And on 4th july, 2013 when the particle was finally discovered by CERN i had an uncontrollable excitement which i couldn't share with anyone as none of my peers knew about it.

That is the main reason i'm applying to Caltech because i know that here i will find people like me, who are excited for a new discovery, who have the passion for study, who want to contribute to the scientific community and science which has evolved us from apes to humans.

I knew from the beginning of my freshmen year that i was going into research. Whenever anyone asked me what I wanted to research in I always used to say particle physics. Due to its similarity with nuclear physics people thought i was talking about it and used to ask me jokingly if i was going to make an atomic bomb.

admission2012 - / 481 90  
Dec 24, 2013   #2
And so the question asked in the prompt still remains...What is it about Caltech's opportunities and resources that will best fuel your intellectual curiosity and develop your passion for science, technology, math or engineering? The only thing of any relevance that you have said so far is that you will be around like-minded people, but this is a given(maybe). -Admissions Advice Online
OP karanbhullar 3 / 13 5  
Dec 24, 2013   #3
i thought so. I'll add more about caltech's resources but can you tell if my essay is grammaticaly correct?
tbtehfdl77 1 / 10  
Dec 25, 2013   #4
That is a really good essay karan, but i kinda have to agree with admissions,,,,,,,,,but you're in the ryt direction. :), just a minor mistake.
helloimyellow 9 / 25 3  
Dec 28, 2013   #5
[Moved from]: 'Astronaut' MIT - Describe world you come from - Dreams and aspirations

Hi there,
This is a pretty solid essay but I'm not quite sure about it being "appropriate" for the prompt. I think the prompt is really asking for some background, and how the WORLD YOU COME FROM has shaped your dreams and aspirations, not just what your dreams and aspirations are (which seems to be the focus of this essay). If you have more childhood stories of have joined science clubs at school, etc., that might be more fitting for this particular prompt. Just my two cents.

If you do decide to keep the essay, just make sure to double check the grammar (ex. capitalize all the I's and make sure everything is in the right tense).

I hope my input helped a little, good luck!
OP karanbhullar 3 / 13 5  
Dec 28, 2013   #6
Thanks for your reply Alisa. I'll definitely add some more stories.
hanlus 2 / 3 1  
Dec 28, 2013   #7
yep, i agree with helloimyellow. it seems as though you're not really talking about the prompt. try to focus more on you and your community and your interactions rather than just reading about something in an article. maybe add in another anecdote about how a person/a specific experience has pushed you to wanting to become a researcher. hmm... i think you should try to make it more personal, maybe they would like that.

also, just remember to capitalize everything that's necessary! read it out loud and then add in/take out some commas as well. good luck :--)


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