Computer Science Personal Statement
Submitted by Amir
The first time I was exposed to the work that goes into software development was when I had the opportunity to shadow a WorldPay employee, on the release day of a software project that had been worked on for several years. It provided me with an insight into the programming ecosystem and was the point where my interest in the fundamentals of computer science was sparked.
This interest inspired me to study Computing at GCSE, where I discovered the complexities behind simple processes, motivating me to progress onto Computing AS. I thoroughly enjoyed studying vector graphics, fascinated by how my calculations brought about 3D shapes using a software called Processing. The combination of subjects I study at A2 contribute to my analytical, experimental, statistical and programming potential; undoubtedly the skillset most sought after in the field of Computer Science. The study of logic and arithmetic is captivating as it creates challenging questions with unequivocal answers, encouraging me to partake in the Intermediate UKMT Maths Challenge where I achieved a gold certificate. To expand my knowledge surrounding concepts of Maths within Computing, I read “The Pattern on the Stone” by W.D Hillis. It changed my perspective on Boolean logic by introducing me to unconventional computational ideas; the most thought-provoking being the applications of abstraction. It was fascinating to see how our brain instinctively uses abstraction to break down tasks the same way a CPU functions.
Furthermore, I am currently teaching myself Java object-oriented programming and Python using online resources such as Lynda and CodeAcademy. I believe this will well prepare me for the programming modules on the course, as well as the independence required at University. I have learnt how to build PCs for myself, family and friends, which has strengthened my practical ability and knowledge on how operating systems work with different components. I successively created a Hackintosh posing many challenges requiring me to troubleshoot. This developed my ability to break down a problem and solve it efficiently.
Alongside studying, I have worked with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, an investment bank, where my group was tasked to pitch a unique idea for a mobile app in a Dragon’s Den scenario. I volunteered to lead my group, whereby communication and teamwork were essential. Using the leadership skills I had developed during the National Citizen Service programme, my team claimed victory over forty others. Furthermore, I worked at FremantleMedia where I provided technical support to clients and shadowed the Technical Manager. I had to create a PowerShell script that fetched logs from clients which meant I had to learn the basic syntax for an unfamiliar language in order to develop a solution. This required me to meet a specification and a deadline, strengthening both my client communication skills and my ability to work under pressure. In addition, I assisted an IT Technician in a school enhancing my on-the-job training skills by learning to draft a new network; an unfamiliar process that is transferable to software design.
To give back to my local community, I volunteered at a Food bank for several months, assisting with the organisation and collection of various food items from the neighbourhood. This boosted my time management skills by challenging my ability to meet deadlines under meticulous conditions. In my free time I enjoy digital photography and cinematography, providing a real-world application of Maths and Computing whilst combining elements of art and creativity; essential for a software engineer.
The perplexity of the future surrounding this field is what keeps me motivated to develop my understanding and put my mathematical ability into practice. I wish to be at the forefront of research in the fast-paced and unprecedented field, that is, Computer Science. Who knows what innovation may lead to in 10 years’ time?