Never Ending, Always Expanding

Keeler - Wichita, Kansas
Entered on March 3, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Before my freshman year of high school, I hated computers. I place the blame on poor teaching, though no doubt my own lack of interest compounded my frustration. On top of that, acronymic internet jargon assaulted my virgin ears, while other students more knowledgeable than I in the field took a superior attitude, intentionally making me feel brainless in comparison to them. This pattern continued throughout junior high until I became sick of it and decided to educate myself in computer science. Following this, I embarked on a journey to seek knowledge, one that helps me understand who I am, and one that I hope continues indefinitely. I believe in self actualization through self education.

Boredom confronted me in school because I finished my faster than most kids, even after enrollment in honors and advanced classes. Teachers gave no reward for the swift comprehension of subjects other than free time, idle time. Though now, in the midst the bustle of my junior year of high school, I wish I had just a bit more free time, back then it drove me crazy. I changed my idle time into productive time by educating myself in the ways of computers. Nothing fancy at first, but enough to make me crave more, to make me finish my work sooner so that I could do something other than what the apathetic teacher gave to me. Self-education became a way for me to break out of the tedium of schoolwork mandated by an indifferent teacher who should not have been teaching in the first place. Each day, as I read my programming books, I felt more and more as if I knew my place in the world: to be a passionate and devoted student of this ever increasing field of knowledge. The world of computers has a funny quality: when one subject is researched for a project (or simply out of interest), many more subjects spring out. Computer science is like my personal Hydra of knowledge; just when I think I have conquered one aspect of it, two more subsequently pop up. Never ending, always expanding, computer science holds treasure troves of knowledge and enjoyment for the curious mind with the courage to wade through countless ideas.

I do not mean to condemn teachers on the basis of a few uninterested ones, because there are many brilliant teachers out there. Quite frankly, though, I am usually happiest when working on a problem involving a computer. The ability to poke, probe, and explore a system fascinates me, something that I never would have found out about myself without computers. Since the first plunge I took a couple of years ago, I have discovered my love for soaking up all of the knowledge possible, to rely on myself to find out what interests me. Above all, I have realized that I will be on a never ending, always expanding journey as a student, a fact which I could not be happier about.