Personal Statement: Optimistic Nihilism

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“Optimistic Nihilism” refers to the idea that life ultimately has no one universal purpose, however instead of feeling helpless, one should strive to use this fact as a reason to enjoy life to the fullest before it’s gone. If one day life must end, then you might as well do what you love in the meantime. Whether or not one ascribes to this philosophy, most can agree that living with little regret and doing what one enjoys is a life well spent. I myself find happiness in helping others—a reality which has influenced not just how I lead, but my own personal goals and ambitions. Thinking about it pragmatically, it stands to reason that if I enjoy helping others, then being a leader of an organization in which I get to do so first-hand would …show more content…
What is infinitely more vexing, though, is wanting to do good for those around me, those most important to me, but having almost no means to do so. I have a very dear friend who, though she is only nineteen, suffers from arthritis in both her knees and wrists. While some days it hardly proves to be a problem, on others she’ll require a brace or a bandage and can hardly move without feeling great discomfort. It’s something she’s come to grow used to over time, often brushing it off as a result of the cold weather. It’s frustrating almost to the point of madness to be reduced to the role of providing support, getting her what she needs, helping her up stairs while helpless to actually alleviate any of her pain. This inability to do what I so desire, to help those around me in need, coupled with my natural curiosity, has spurred on my pursuit of science. I want to use my knowledge, and the knowledge I hope to acquire, to help her, and others like her. Sure, attempting to cure something as common and difficult to understand as arthritis is no short order, but progress cannot be made without first putting in the proper effort. I've always been a rather shy, and admittedly a bit too squeamish, to ever hope to become a surgeon or doctor. However, this doesn't keep me from wanting to contribute in my own way; I'm excited at the idea of doing research, of helping others from behind the scenes, making the world a better place from the comfort of a

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