Fulbright Curriculum Vitae
Lukas Morgan – Australia
Finding Alternative Energy Sources with Chemical Engineering
My senior year of high school was my most challenging, yet most beneficial, of my life. I faced many responsibilities and a large workload, and different leadership roles, but this experience allowed me to grow as an academic and also as a person. As a senior, I had the opportunity to participate in the accelerated, project-based learning New Visions STEM program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). This program challenged me to take charge as a leader in the class, and take control of my studies.
For the New Visions program, we were placed into the difficult introductory Physics 1 and 2 classes alongside college freshmen. Participating in these classes opened my eyes to how I need to actively study. Before this program, I was able to fly by in my schooling, without much effort. During these physics classes, I realized that I needed to study and take charge of my work, rather than going through the motions. I started to engage in review sessions and study groups, and also began practicing certain study techniques in order to help me study for the difficult exams. Through this change, I have been able to carry these techniques into college, allowing me to thrive in the college environment, and prepare for the work force.
The other side of this program was a project-based, group-learning environment, focused on different fields of engineering. For many of these projects, the topics encountered were problems I had never come across before, and I had to work through these problems. I had to adapt to the new constraints and situations. With this new adaptability, I was able to excel in this class and help others in my group work towards this adaptability. For the majority of my groups, I took on the role of the leader, guiding the team, showing them what we need to focus on when it came to research. I brought the work of the group to a higher quality. I did not allow us to look for the easy way out of work, but rather sought for the next step towards further developing our ideas.
On top of this difficult senior year engineering program, I was a captain for the three varsity sports I participated in: cross-country, basketball, and outdoor track. As a captain, I felt an obligation to look after the team and include everyone, giving each person a voice even in basic ways. I was also a junior coach for a youth running club in my community. This entailed running the workouts with the kids and providing them with advice, if they asked. My teammates and the kids on the club team felt comfortable coming to me because I am easily approachable and I listen to people.
Without the New Visions program, I would not be the person I am today. I am able to focus on my own work, yet still have time to lead and guide people. I have been able to excel through my higher education. If awarded the Fulbright, I will be able to continue these techniques, and thrive in a new culture and environment, academically and socially. This project will allow me to showcase these skills and help me to further hone them, in order for future success.