Hello, I'm Liam Ottley. I am a year eleven student at Dilworth School in Epsom, Auckland, and have been given this amazing opportunity through Andrew Patterson and the Dilworth X-Change.
I found my love for technology after years of watching documentaries, playing constructive computer games like Locomotion, reading National Geographic magazines and coming up with solutions to everyday problems. My Mum used to get annoyed over the sheer quantity of weird and sometimes stupid questions that I came up when I was young, but this was just me trying to figure out the world. After asking questions for many years, I started coming up with my own solutions to the problems I faced each day. These ranged from cereal pouring alarm clocks to pulley systems to get food to and from my tree house. Today, I focus on areas like carbon capturing and space exploration as they interest me the most. I see space exploration as being the next big thing for the human race, and carbon control as being vital to sustain human expansion here on earth.
At school, I enjoy history, science, economics and mathematics but do not know where I want to take my career or studies after school. However, I do know that I want to study something like chemical engineering or aerospace engineering at an American university like UCLA or Stanford. I hope to use my talents and knowledge to help better the world in the future. In my free time I enjoy playing football, lifting weights and making music.
By going on this trip, I hope to grasp the culture and environment that has made Silicon Valley the world's home of technology. I also hope to make connections with many people in Silicon Valley that I can call on and use when I start up my own business. When I return to New Zealand, I want to have a much better or definite idea of what I want to study at school and when I leave school. However, most importantly, I want to use my experience to effect other younger students at Dilworth, and inspire them to apply for this trip or chose a career path of entrepreneurship, which I believe is a very exciting and rewarding occupation.
I am extremely grateful to Andrew Patterson and the Dilworth X-Change, for allowing me to apply for an opportunity like this, let alone being chosen to go. I look forward to getting to know all others going on this trip, and proving my worth in the centre of technology.