You are on page 1of 2


I have always seen science and engineering as variations of the same concept; applied
science is engineering which in turn, allows new discoveries in science. Nothing has
influenced social evolution more than modern science and engineering. Over the past
200 years, it has transformed every facet of society into what we see today;
infrastructure, computers, communication, medicine, music (to name a few) have all
morphed significantly with advances in science and engineering. I have always
recognised the importance of these fields and thus, for most of my life, I have either
wanted to work in the advancement of science or in the innovation of engineering and
The decision I had to make came down to either contributing to the continuous search
for the truth which defines science, or adding to the improvement of humanity through
engineering. This year however, due to recent enlightening experiences, I believe I
have found an occupational niche which encompasses all of my difficult choices under
one discipline; Biomedical Engineering. Although this is an engineering field by name,
in practice it is a field of science and medicine. In the future I see this field affecting
ethics, economics and the very nature of humanity.
Although I have always been set on a career in science, technology or engineering, I
have no family background in these areas. I was raised on five different dairy farms as
my parents moved between share-milking jobs. Although I never had a direct influence
from them into this field, I first became fixated on science when they bought me the
Childrens First Encyclopaedia at age five. They always told me the importance of
education and hard work and I used these principles to personally discover my passion
of science and engineering. I also feel that my childhood of being unrestricted on the
farm to solve problems by myself and release my creativity in any way I want has made
me suited to an engineering degree.
My aspirations throughout my childhood developed from an Inventor, to Chemical
Engineer, to Nuclear Physicist as I became aware of more possibilities.
Then in the 2012 summer holidays, I was selected to attend the National Rotary
Science Forum for two weeks through the University of Auckland and the Rotary Club,
based in ORorke Hall. This was a program for the top 150 science students in New
Zealand to encourage entry into a science or engineering career. I was given an
insight into every aspect of Science and Engineering, some completely unfamiliar to
me. One of these new disciplines was Biomedical Engineering.
Biomedical engineering is the application of engineering concepts and materials
technology to medicine. This includes researching, designing and developing medical
products, genetic engineering, tissue engineering and medical imaging. It is a very
recent field, with many new medical possibilities now possible with advancements in
computing capabilities. The future prospects at the moment include the production of
replacement organs in the lab, the use and application of stem cells, development of
micro-implants, pharmaceutical drugs and much more.

The three hour taster into this field was enough to capture my attention and I continued
to explore this career pathway over the following months. What I found was the ideal
combination of physics, chemistry, biology, statistics, calculus and computer
programming; all of which are my school subjects that I am passionate about. It is also
based on a strong characteristic of intellectual creativity. Furthermore, it has real world
applicability that was not as evidently tangible in my earlier interest in physics; I would
prefer to be actively involved in conveying my ideas and work into real world results.
I have, of my own accord, visited and toured the Biomedical Engineering departments
at both Waikato University and Auckland University with enthusiastic and experienced
professionals in this field (Professor Alistair Steyn-Ross and Dr Rob Kirton
respectively). The extensive brain modelling project at Waikato University and the
innovative implants and devices developed at Auckland University were a real eyeopener as I realised the full scope of biomedical engineering and the positive
ramifications for all parts of society it could have. These experiences have made me
determined to work and succeed so that I can one day add to this vital innovation.
During this time, due to personal experiences, I also felt much more aware of how
precious, but equally delicate, human life is. Reinforcing my strong interest in this field
already, I started to see Biomedical Engineering as the next vital stage in human
development, comparable to any major medical or technological breakthrough. The
development of ourselves using technology, as we have done with the world around
us, will eventually allow us to live longer, healthier and more stable lives. From there,
we could even further human development. This could change the way we travel
through space, the way we communicate, the way we eat and drink and so on. I find
the vast possibilities of this field very exciting.
Consequentially, I have become less focused on the monetary rewards of other
pathways which pale in comparison to the possibility of making an everlasting
contribution. I find the greater salary of a surgeon or civil engineer for example,
insignificant to the restricted originality that comes with these jobs. Obviously all
engineering degrees provide a comfortable salary, but my choice shows that this is not
my primary motivation.
In conclusion, I want to be a biomedical engineer because it is a job in which I am able
to draw upon recent science advancements and my own intellectual creativity in order
to create something completely new that contributes to the advancement of humanity
and civilisation. For me, this would be more meaningful and fulfilling than any other
occupation. I see Biomedical Engineering as having the greatest future potential and
as the most innovative and thrilling specialisation possible.
If fortunate enough to receive this scholarship, I will strive to advance as far as my
maximum effort and potential can take me. To be able to attend Auckland University,
undoubtedly the finest University in New Zealand for this field would allow me to take
the next step into this pathway. This career perfectly encompasses innovation and
intellect, challenges and curiosity, and meaningful solutions which is everything I have
ever aspired for in a vocation.