The Reasons for Transfer to Another College and Personal Objectives
Please provide a statement that addresses your reasons for transferring and the objectives you hope to achieve. You can type directly into the box, or you can paste text from another source. (250-650 words)
My first experience with computer science was in the 2nd grade, when I learnt Logo in school. There was a turtle on the screen and via appropriate commands I could control its movement! I could use it to create a myriad of shapes! Though it was challenging, I found it extremely satisfying that I could solve a drawing problem using a computer. At such a tender age, that was computer science to me. Over the years, my understanding of computer science has matured. I realize that now, more than ever, I am eager to explore beyond the realms of the prescribed syllabus, to challenge myself mentally and to develop deeper insights into the subject.
Being born and raised in India, I grew up wanting to be a computer scientist. Being a sincere student, more often than not I topped my class. I aspired to study at one of the top colleges in India, which I did by joining BITS Pilani. I visited USA the summer after my freshman year and that was when I really came to appreciate the higher education system here.
I visited several of the foremost universities, talked to several students and professors and my perception of higher education changed completely. I wanted to get a world class education but considering the rigor of the academics at those universities, I was not sure that I would thrive there. I wanted to make sure that I could deal with the pressure of such rigorous academics and so I decided to simulate such conditions at Rutgers-Newark.
At Rutgers-Newark, I have had the privilege of learning under motivating and dedicated professors who have always pushed me to perform better than before. I have also enjoyed reading books from the well-equipped Dana library and benefited from working out in the professional Golden Dome athletic center. But somewhere deep down, I was troubled because I knew that I was missing something. It was only after I carefully analyzed my academic experience that I found out.
I do not find myself being challenged enough in my computer science courses and frankly, that is the sole reason that I want to transfer. I want to be able to explore the subject deeper, to learn more but I realize that the curriculum does not push me enough. In his book, The Art and Craft of Problem Solving, Paul Zeitz explains the difference between “exercises” and “problems”.
Exercises involve straightforward application of a narrowly focused technique wherein the solution is apparent whereas problems are much more challenging, open-ended and demand creative application of multiple strategies. Almost all problem sets that I get to work on are not that difficult in general and are hardly intellectual challenges, they are routine “exercises” for me. Most students may feel satisfied in getting great grades and getting a computer science degree, but I am not in the same boat.
Despite having straight A’s, I always believed that grades are largely a measure of one’s sincerity and not knowledge. I do not intend to study computer science just for the sake of it, I want to really be able to understand the principles and apply them. Just like the best muscle gains come from lifting weights that challenge you, so also the best intuition and insight is developed only when you are challenged and pushed. From being the only one attending the Putnam exam training sessions, to unsuccessfully look for computer science, math or programming clubs- I really need a “problem” type curriculum that constantly stimulates me.
By transferring to one of the best institutions in the country, I intend to take maximum advantage to fulfill my career goals. I am positive that the rigorous computer science program would not only challenge me greatly, but would also expose me to better research and internship opportunities whereby I could actually apply my classroom skills. I intend to take my education to the next level, exchange knowledge with like-minded cohorts which would be mutually beneficial and broaden my computer science education by exploring the subject with exceptional professors.