My fascination with space and space travel began as a small child when I saw TV programmes showing the exploration of Mars using the remote Rovers. Ever since I can remember, I have wanted to be on the team that is behind the first people-to-Mars expedition.
Growing up, I developed a strong interest in physics from my Dad, who is an engineer. We used to talk a lot and do projects together at home. This interest remained strong going through school and physics is now my strongest and my favourite subject. I have thought a lot about space travel to Mars and I now want to take my knowledge of the science behind spacecraft to a higher level by studying aerospace engineering at university level.
I am convinced that this will be the right path for me as I enjoy problem solving and maths and I am prepared to work hard to learn more and to tackle more difficult topics.
My school and college have been very supportive and the teachers there, particularly in physics and maths, have encouraged my interests. I have attended and then run the lunch-time engineering club and in my last year, we designed and made a remote-controlled robot. Our first prototype fell apart when it hit a tree, but we did better with the second one.
Last year, the school arranged a work experience trip to Switzerland to an aerospace facility. We had to enter an essay competition to get a place and I was thrilled when I was chosen as one of the 12 students who could go. I had the best time of my life there. We stayed for three weeks and it was hard work but so good. It taught me a lot about working with other people and I had a glimpse of what it would be like to work within such a large organisation.
Being bored is one of the worst things that can happen to me and I like to do sports and have other interests beyond physics. I have played for my local rugby team for four years now, going training twice a week and playing a match most weekends. Rugby is much more fun than football and I have learned a lot about how to play well in a team. I have also got much fitter and I also enjoy swimming at weekends and on holiday. My Dad enjoys hill walking and we have been walking several times in the Lake District and in Wales. I’ve also completed several trips with my Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award group, as well as volunteering at the local cat shelter on a Saturday morning.
Creativity is also important to me and I love to draw and sketch and I’m experimenting with water colours. I think my drawing abilities will be useful for my advanced studies in physics and engineering but I do it because I love it. It’s a great break from studying and doing equations.
It’s my ambition to work in the aerospace industry and to be part of that team that puts people on Mars and studying aerospace engineering at university is going to be my next big step towards that.