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leandrofosque

- 5

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This is the question they ask: The 1-page Self-statement should describe your academic background, your interests, and your tentative career plans. The Statement should indicate why you feel REU participation would benefit you and your future plans; also, describe how you believe you can contribute to your mentor’s research topic. If applicable, you are welcome to describe prior undergraduate research experience, as well as any other information that you feel may be useful to our assessment. Finally, please indicate if you have a preferred mentor or topic area.

**Self-Statement**

Today's world allows one to access to any kind of information. Any person can access online lectures for free and learn about upper level math and physics and other subjects. From the vast amount of available information, it is up to oneself to choose what knowledge to consume. Unfortunately, as a child I didn't have access to Internet, nor a computer, so I would spend most of my free time in the local library and in the school's library. In this way I got to read about philosophy, math, physics, chemistry, and astronomy in their various levels of difficulty.

I grew up in a small town in the south of the province of Buenos Aires in Argentina. All my family members were hard workers, however, none of them ever even finished high school. I am the first generation going to college. It was hard for me to find the correct path to an education by myself because I didn't have any person to guide me. However, since I was young, I always had a strong interest in science. This interest was reinforced while being in a technical high school. There I learned about applied science, specifically electromagnetism. Also, I learned about problem solving at a technical level. I finished high school with a diploma as a electro-mechanical technician.

Currently, I am an astrophysics and math major at Rutgers. Now that I am in college studying what I love the most I have to choose a specific path. I was undecided until last summer when I participated in the SUMaR program at Kansas State University. The program consisted of research in mathematics. In my project I had to work with papers on different approaches to a solution for a generalized diffusion equation. Some of them were theoretical and some involved numerical solutions. My job was to extend the theory to

*n*dimensions and build a program that could model the evolution of different diffusion equations. It wasn't easy, but in the process I learned that in order to reach your goal you have to do the things without hesitation.At that time I hadn't learned calculus 3, although I had done differential equations. However, I worked hard and accomplished my goals and finished my project to the best of my ability. I wrote a paper, created a poster, and gave presentations at Kansas State.The name of the paper is “Numerical Experiments with a Level-Set Tracking Algorithm for a Generalized Diffusion Equation.”

I never enjoyed a summer so much, as this past summer I was learning and working with what I love the most. Through this summer program,I learned how to work independently within a certain discipline, and also learned to work diligently with others. One of the most interesting things I learned from doing research is that it is a way to make connections with scientists around the world.Furthermore, thanks to these connections I was invited to the 2014 Math Alliance Conference in Arizona where I got to know many graduate programs and made more connections. After this experience, I decided to pursue my graduate studies in mathematical physics, probably working in Topological Quantum Field Theories and Differential Geometry applying them to quantum gravity and field theories.

What attracted me the most to the __ summer program in physics was the research in quantum gravity and general relativity. There are very few places in the US where one can actually do research in quantum gravity and the ___ group seems the strongest. Particularly I am interested in Dr. ___ and Dr. ___'s work. Also, I am very interested in the work of Dr. ___ in nuclear physics and astrophysics. Although Quantum Chromodynamics is a difficult subject I would love to have the experience of studying it and contribute to its development.

Moreover, I believe I am a good candidate for this internship because I can grasp new concepts rapidly and I have a passion for Quantum Gravity. I like to push myself by working out high level problems in books on different subjects in math and physics and strive to be way ahead of my class. Also, the experience I had at my previous internship has helped me to build more confidence and become more independent. The most important thing I learned was that it doesn't matter if one doesn't have the right knowledge for certain application, everything can be learned. It just depends of one's willingness to learn and that is my most powerful impulse in life.Should I add that I got many scholarships, that I tutor math and physics, and/or that my goal is to participate in as many internships as possible during my undergrad years?

Thank you in advance