Alain Laforest '15

FRONTIER LEARNING

The Frontier Learning Science Bowl League provides high schools in the Los Angeles/Orange County region with more opportunities to participate in Science Bowl - a fast­paced, team­based science trivia game popularized by the Department of Energy (DOE). Given the lack of resources and promotional effort to introduce a Science Bowl league in this region, we seek to fill the gap left by the DOE by introducing and organizing a series of 5 fee­based Science Bowl tournaments over the 10­week Fellowship period. These tournaments will be held in engineering facilities, allowing students to not only increase their understanding of science, but also develop interest in licensed professions and scientific related careers.

Personal Statement

Ever since I came to Brown last fall, I’ve been determined to use my education to help others in a meaningful way. This objective led to me forming friendships with several upperclassmen who were a part of a group independent study called Making Moves Mentoring. Making Moves Mentoring is an independent study within the education department that has university students tutor and mentor underprivileged Providence high school students. The university students use this experience to draw conclusions about the flaws inherent within the education system. This was one of my first experiences at Brown where I was called to think critically to assess others’ strengths and weaknesses, and to create strategies to work on these qualities.

The opportunity to establish a Science Bowl League presents me with the chance to work on my interest in applying my education socially as well as my interest in entrepreneurship. This undertaking is significant for me personally because I participated in a state sponsored STEM program in high school. I would not have been able to apply to Brown University without my participation in Fordham University’s Science and Technology Entry Program. Although I am not certain that I would like to pursue a career in the field, this experience was beneficial for me academically and also exposed me to career options I would not have looked into otherwise. Furthermore, debate was an activity I was very passionate about in high school. However, my school did not have a substantial debate program. We participated in a league locally that did not have adequate resources to sustain itself. In my senior year, it became clear that the debate team at my high school would have a difficult time sustaining itself once I graduated due to dying interest. In order to remedy this situation, I looked into joining a larger debate league. My search led me to finding The National Forensics League, an independent national speech and debate league that is similar to the Science Bowl League. Although many debate members wished to join the league and I took the preliminary steps to do so, my school did not have the resources to participate. To this day, my high school debate team is suffering from waning interest.

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