My Ambition To Become A Chemical Engineer
I believe one of the most fundamental factors of a functioning world is Chemical Engineering. My initial spark towards this career path started from my year 10 work experience at a pharmaceutical company, where I experienced first-hand the impact of the industry. This fuelled my curiosity to how such products were manufactured and designed to benefit others whilst being sustainable by generating a profit. I have always been amazed to explore how the world is heavily influenced by chemistry and physics in our day to day life – from transport to soaps. For instance, the contact process is used on an industrial scale, using sulfur and oxygen to produce sulfuric acid and sulfur trioxide, which is essential for the production of fertiliser for use in agricultural crops – supplying the growing demand for food. Though, the process can be used in so many diverse ways such as in the petrochemical industry with petroleum refining, using sulfuric acid to remove impurities to the pharmaceutical industry through drugs and dyes. Innovations such as these industrial processes clearly impact peoples’ lives and it will be fascinating to learn about them.
The Extended Project further grew my interest as I researched deeply into the different aspects of alternative energy sources and asked the question “How well will newly developed renewable sources of energy perform against existing energy sources?” I particularly looked into the possibility of nuclear fusion as a viable and sustainable form of energy in the future. It was interesting to learn about the cost of running a potential nuclear fusion reactor and also the design and research processes that continue to be developed, including the Tokamak experimental reactor in France. Subsequently, I discovered the importance of chemical engineers in such a project. For instance, engineers are needed for the removal of tritium from molten coolants and technology for isotope separation, using forms of mass spectrometry. Personally, I find it exciting to see how the field reflects how complex problems such as depletion of resources and global warming is combated in so many revolutionary ways.
The subjects that I take have greatly tested the depth of my knowledge and have acted as catalysts towards pursuing this course. For example, in chemistry, I have thoroughly enjoyed learning about entropy and enthalpy as it is intriguing to learn about the ways of determining disorder of particles and energy changes in reactions. I have also loved improving my understanding of reaction mechanisms, such as hydration, which is used in many industrial processes. I am yearning to learn more about this at degree level. I feel that taking physics and maths have vastly developed my problem-solving skills and made me more methodical to my work. My experience in retail at Marks and Spencer, as a seasonal customer assistant, has developed the skills that benefit me to become an engineer. I understand that being independent and proactive towards my academic endeavours along with my daily lifestyle is also highly important. Studying while working at my job required managing my time efficiently, which is a useful trait to an engineer. During this, I have gained more confidence to work as a team, which is a beneficial ability to have when working with a team of engineers. My understanding of how a business operates would greatly benefit me in the aspect of chemical engineering where making a profit is as important as designing a new industrial process or modification.
My involvement in my school’s aspirational students group has developed my knowledge on many topics. The communication skills that I gained is very applicable to the field of chemical engineering where conversing is needed. Besides my academics, I have completed my National Citizen Service, where I volunteered for the Milton Keynes MS Society to create awareness by creating a short film, where I applied my interest in filmmaking. Also, I have represented the British Academy of Shotokan Karate, competing in competitions. I completely believe I have the motivation to pursue my ambition to become a chemical engineer. Given that it is challenging, I have the enthusiasm and the capacity for hard work to achieve my goal.
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