Theoretical Physics Personal Statement

From the quantum revolution to the simple feats of engineering, Theoretical Physics has been at the pinnacle of human ingenuity. My decision to study Theoretical Physics at University has been driven by my desire to understand the complex, rich and fascinating universe that I am part of.

My passion for physics began in secondary school. When introduced to the basics of atom configuration, I was confused to learn that the atom had tightly packed positively charged particles. My first thought was "wouldn't the protons in the middle feel electrostatic repulsion?"

This discovery pushed me to read about the topic, hoping to gather some intuitive understanding. Research led me to find the work of Hideki Yukawa's strong interaction. I was fascinated by the exchange particles called gluons that were responsible for keeping the protons together in the centre of the nucleus.

Since then I have been keen to work independently to broaden my knowledge of Theoretical Physics. As part of this, I developed a massive interest in quantum physics.

Hoping to go beyond the basics, I read "The Quantum Moment" by Robert P. Crease. I was mostly intrigued by one chapter which specifically focused on Heisenberg's implications, not only on scientific advancements but also how his research affected people's vision of the universe as fundamentally uncertain.

The world of quantum physics has taught me not to take everything at face value and question everything, even the simplest of questions can have the most complicated answers. I once researched "how long does it take to boil the perfect egg?"

To discover the number of variables needed to answer a seemingly simple question left me in awe. This has led me to believe that Theoretical Physics is the perfect field for my curious nature.

After attending a lecture about quantum physics, I have come to understand more about the impact of the 2016 Nobel Prize winner's work. Their study of topological phases of matter will revolutionise the way we approach quantum computing and the way we view quantum mechanics.

I then sought out another lecturer in pure mathematics; it taught us the intermediate value theorem and how this proves if a function is continuous. Proofs in mathematics have always stimulated me. Maths has always been the most appropriate channel for my logical and problem-solving devices.

When presented with the problem of Theseus' ship, I was quick to identify the problem of subjectivity. Problems of this sort interest me greatly. A related interest of mine lies in differential equations and how integral they are to so many physical methods, for instance: quantum physics and radioactivity.

A hobby of mine includes basketball, both as a player and as a coach. I volunteer at the community sports centre helping the younger kids and improving the performance of the older players. These teamwork and stress-management skills helped during the Outward Bound "Skills for Life" 19-day self-improvement course, which helped me grow further as an individual.

It was a highly challenging experience, both physically and mentally. Throughout the experience I pushed myself beyond my limits and expanded my comfort zone by leading my group on our final expedition and adapting to a situation of power I wasn't used to; this experience also developed my communication skills which have proved useful to my role as Head Boy.

Being chosen for this role, my responsibilities include helping to steer the sixth form council and giving speeches at school events. These challenges have further developed both my leadership, problem-solving, and time-management skills.

The next step of my life is no doubt through university. To be given the opportunity to allow myself to think on a higher level excites me greatly and I wouldn't want miss this challenge for anything.

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