The Quanta Picosecond Laser Annual Scholarship winner will be selected this week for the first time ever and we learned a few wonderful things about the next generations of engineers, scientists and medical professionals as we reviewed the hundreds of applications we received. The scholarship application form asked for a summary of future plans with medicine and/ or technology.
Here are some of our happy observations:
- Many of the applicants are the sibling or child of someone who struggles with cancer, autism, Down syndrome or another condition or disease. After seeing first-hand how their loved one has struggled, they are pursuing a path in research or medicine to find better ways to treat the next person who gets diagnosed.
- Another subset of entries focused on robotics, machine learning and artificial intelligence work. As the first generation to be raised surrounded by ever-present technology, these amazing young people are looking at what they have grown up with and imagining incredible possibilities for where it could go.
- Volunteering and service to underprivileged communities both in the United States and abroad came up often on applications. Many want to be a part of the Peace Corps, Doctors Without Borders and other existing organizations. Others want to become doctors, nurses, PA’s and NP’s and then return to their own community where they have seen great need.
- We received applications from many young people who want to work in environmental engineering to save the planet they love from running out of natural resources for their own and future generations. Plans to discover new resources and to better harness existing ones were mentioned.
- Aeronautical engineering was mentioned in the future plans of several applicants. Some of them hope to work for organizations like Lockheed Martin, NASA or Space X. Others want to go to Mars–where, by the way, a Quanta laser has already gone.
Quanta was founded by engineers more than 30 years ago and will continue to support and encourage those who love physics, engineering, medicine and their practical applications as much as we do. We may only be making one scholarship award, but we wish a bright future of discovery to all who have applied for the Quanta Picosecond Laser Annual Scholarship.
Note: The winner will be announced on August 4, 2017 and application deadline is 11:59 p.m. MST on July 31.