Civil Engineering Personal Statement
In a world that is continually growing and evolving and problems such as global warming and population growth becoming ever more real, the need for innovation and fresh ideas from the engineering world becomes increasingly evident.
It is this that attracts me to civil engineering as a career because although I am aware of the many pressures and demands I would be facing, the sense of achievement and the knowledge that I would be making a difference to the lives of others would be of great personal reward to me!
My fascination for engineering started when I was young, and has only increased since then. I enjoyed playing video and computer games that required planning and strategy. I watched 'Extreme Engineering' when it first aired on the Discovery channel and today I have seen every episode up to season five and am waiting to see the sixth season.
I have a game called 'West Point Bridge designer' that has taught me about the different properties of each type of bridge and allows me to experiment with different bridge designs as well as using different materials in the most cost effective way possible.
Unfortunately for my parents, this fascination extended into reverse engineering as well and ranged from my toys as a child to unused household items and broken cars and motorcycles as an adolescent.
This interest was then nurtured during my schooling and college years - at school learning about the history of art and how the smallest engineering discoveries led to the biggest architectural breakthroughs, for instance the impact that the arch, concrete and the dome had on Ancient Roman and proceeding architecture.
In college I thoroughly enjoyed mathematics and physics particularly in the applied sections, and although my grades do not reflect this, a big portion of my gap year has already been spent on preparation towards of their improvement.
As well as a lot of revision, my gap year so far has been a wealth of new experiences and challenges from things as silly as learning to juggle and ride a unicycle to teaching myself to play the keyboard and getting my motorcycle license.
I also had a job as a general labourer working under the site manager on a building site where I worked alongside the tradesmen and occasionally the architect, thereby gaining valuable experience in keeping to the strict requirements of working to time schedules and regulations, planning, problem solving and keeping quality of work up and expenses down.
Previous to that I worked at my local supermarket as a general assistant and was eventually promoted to a team leader.
I was responsible for liaising with my managers and keeping them up to date with what was happening around the store and making sure my staff knew what was expected of them throughout their shifts as well as doing my own work around the store.
This taught me how to deal with people in a variety of situations in a polite and professional manner while also greatly improving my communication and social skills.
Being born and raised in South Africa and having made the transition and adaptation to English culture and way of life with ease, I have no doubt I would adapt in much the same way to university life.
Also I think it is important that I have witnessed the differences in infrastructure between developed and third world countries and their respective effects on the surrounding populations and feel I could use this knowledge to my advantage.
I am a very active person and sport has always been a big part of my life. In high school I captained my cricket and rugby teams and was part of the swimming, tennis and athletics teams and represented my home province in cricket, athletics and surfing.
Living over here I am a member of the local cricket and rugby club; I take part in the occasional darts and pool tournaments and am a regular at the local health centre. All of this means I have a lot of experience in performing under pressure, pushing myself and working well as a team.
By the end of my gap year I hope to have: fulfilled my travelling plans where I hope to go backpacking in Asia as I think it will be an awe-inspiring and eye opening experience; have learnt many more new skills and gained more relevant work experience; and hopefully begin a journey into becoming a part of the great and prolific industry of ingenuity and creativity that is the world of engineering.
I think I have included too many irrelevant points and I think it's badly structured. Please feel free give your thoughts and to criticise as much as possible