Life is a Journey

Who I was, who I am, who I aspire to be

Roots as a Sapling

A Columbus, Ohio native, I grew up with my two brothers and parents on the north side of Columbus. My childhood was filled with study and play, often outdoors. I frequently was found in trees reading, making up games with my brothers, or building things out of sticks or legos. My parents encouaged me to explore and learn on my own.

I brought this same studious rigor to school with me, but also brought along my incredulous and stubborn nature, resulting in praise for my work from teachers but often being disciplined for not paying attention.

I was bored. Luckily, a few of my teachers and my parents encouraged me to continue my self-learning rather than stifle it to fall in line.

Branching Out

After grade school, I attended Ohio State University with the intention of becoming a medical doctor. I enjoyed science and helping others, but quickly found myself discouraged by the future of the medical profession and more interested in natural sciences and poltiical science

Both geology and politics appealed to my naturally inquisitive nature while working the logical part of my brain. "But why?" was always my favorite question as a child, and the challenges of supporting complex political philosophies and policies satiated this question endlessly

Both geology and politics are multidisciplinary fields, requiring a broad base of knowledge in numerous areas of study. I certainly love chemistry, physics, economics, psychology, ecology, etc. but they often bledd into other fields. Rather than stop at the edge of one field of study, I much prefer the big picture

Compiling massive amounts of data and theories to quickly come up with a complete view of the situation is the ultimate meal for my brain.

The challenge of an impossible problem is what gets me out of the bed each morning. And just because a problem has been "solved" doesn't mean it is perfect, and this includes myself. "Question everything, bow to nothing" are words I live by.

“The questions are always more important than the answers.” –Randy Pausch

I completed my undergraduate degrees in Geological Science and Political Science in 2012, with my Honors Research thesis in Political Science covering state failure, a phenomena where state authority is partially or completely eroded, leaving a power "black hole."

Pruning dead branches

The beauty of constantly questioning and challenging yourself is you never stop changing. Hardened beliefs end up tossed aside for fresh, more real ones. Knowledge is accumulated but kept behind you, never rested upon but sought continuously. During graduate school, I grew immensely, shedding many old dogmas while humbling myself to learn more.

That's the funny thing about learning: the more you learn, the greater your understanding of your own ignorance. During graduate school, I worked for the Subsurface Energy Materials Characterization and Analysis Laboratory (SEMCAL) as a research assistant. I frequently worked with post-docs and professors who forgot more than I'd ever learn about science.

I graduated from Ohio State Unversity with my Masters in Geology in 2016, my thesis entitled "Analysis of the Point Pleasant/Lexington/Trenton Formations: Sulfides, Mineralogy, and Trace Elements as Geochemical Proxies". My >100 page thesis pushed the limits of my scientific knowledge and thinking. Ultimately, I successfully defended my findings and theories

My theory on sulfide morphology, δ34S (isotope ratio), and redox in gas producing argillaceous shale.

After graduating, I finished renovating my >100 year old home. I enjoy home improvement for the same reason as enjoying politics: it's multidisciplinary and there is near complete freedom to create something new and attractive. Forming a vision and plan, then implementing the plan and enjoying the finished product is worth the hard work.

Planting Seeds

After graduating and serving as a geologist for the Ohio Geological Survey and a technical support specialist for Gilson Company, I found myself desiring a change and new challenges. Web and app development seemed like a natural fit, incorporating logic, creativity, science, and boundless learning.

Under the guidance of my older brother, Justin, I began learning JS and completed a Udemy course, The Complete Web and App Developer Course.

I can sense my coding abilities growing, though there's always more to learn. I've set my goals and I'm striving towards them. Thank you for joining me on my journey!
My older brother, Justin, and me.