Computer Science Personal Statement
What number produces the largest Collatz chain? Logical aspects of my subjects such as the Collatz conjecture in maths, programming in computer science and electronics in physics piques an interest in me.
The way components can be used in different electronic circuits to produce varying outputs, is reflected in programming, where different modules of code can be seamlessly brought together to solve a problem.
My experience in programming began five years ago with Python. Since then I have improved my craft with various projects. Currently, I am working on a program with databases and a GUI to help tuition businesses.
I have invested time into this project as I had to self-teach libraries and functions in Python: For example, using decorators in conjunction with SQL. I used online resources such as documentation, forums, as well as my classmates to get an understanding of these aspects of my program.
Furthermore, my interest in finding problems to solve programmatically has led me to a website called ProjectEuler. Here, I have challenged myself with mathematical problems, which I solved using a programmed solution.
This has allowed me to test and improve my problem-solving skills, such as decomposition and abstraction while getting the satisfaction of solving a difficult problem. One of the challenges was finding what number, under a million, makes the largest Collatz chain. By creating a repeating function, I reached the answer “837799” – produces a chain of 524 numbers.
I have participated in various maths competitions, such as Who Wants to Be a Mathematician and UKMT Maths Challenges; achieving a silver award in the most recent competition.
I found these competitions enjoyable because they allowed me to test my problem-solving skills in maths with difficult questions, whilst also fuelling my intellectual curiosity in finding problems to solve. In physics, electricity has become a topic I love.
At first, I found it difficult to understand aspects, such as how current and voltage were linked. However, working through electricity as well as keeping on top of the rest of Physics, led me to understand more about electronics. My newfound interest has led me to investigate how various components such as bridge rectifiers are used in everyday tech like chargers.
I have participated in Young Enterprise club, as Finance Director of Thread Count, whereby I reached the London regional finals. I kept track of our revenue, costs, and profits using spreadsheets, which helped me to further understand the practical applications of functions, formulas and other aspects of spreadsheets. Helping out at various stalls and giving presentations, improved my ability to communicate clearly in front of a group.
My hobbies include taekwondo, guitar, and video games such as TF2, in which I lead a competitive team in various leagues. I organise matches on a bi-weekly basis to practise for these competitions, which has resulted in my team getting first out of upwards of 40 other teams.
My interest in playing guitar in my spare time has led me to join my school’s guitar ensemble, where we have weekly practices for in-school concerts. This has helped my confidence in performing in front of others.
As part of my school’s mentoring scheme, I aided three students in Year 10 and 11 in maths, physics and computer science. This opportunity utilised my understanding of these subjects, as I had to explain it in a way which would be easy to process, and better comprehension of these topics.
Also, I became a computer science prefect, where I helped organise and run our Freshers' Fair stall as well as helping at open evenings. These events allowed me to express why I enjoyed computer science.
With the relatively new field of quantum computing arising with developments such as Google’s “Sycamore” and commercial uses of D-wave systems. It makes me want to be part of these developments, which I feel this degree will enable me to do.
Took about about 5 drafts or so with various Computer Science and Maths teachers and tutors.