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Spokeo Connection Scholarship, Essay Example

Pages: 6

Words: 1625

Essay

We are living in the most exciting time in history and the vision of the world as a global village is finally becoming a reality. While globalization has overall been a blessing, especially for developing countries like India and China who have been experiencing record economic growths and producing strong middle class, many others have not been so fortunate. Fortunately, the world has not only been progressing economically but also socially. Internet has increased cross-cultural exchange of information and more and more citizens are joining hands to improve the lives of those who have either been economically exploited or social discriminated. In addition, those with economic resources have become more innovative with their philanthropic giving and they are also not afraid to use their influence to challenge prevalent yet outdated norms. If I were to have a direct connection with anyone living today, it would be none other than Bill Gates. I believe no living person has done more to change the world than Bill Gates and the reasons I admire Bill Gates are probably different from the ones behind an average person’s fascination with him. In fact, my respect for Bill Gates has to do little with the fact that he has been officially the richest person in the world for quite a while.

We all have biases which are usually the outcome of a wide range of factors including family background, cultural background, economic background, religion, personal experiences, education, and personal achievements. I know from my personal experiences and observations that we naturally tend to protect our personal interests and our self-interests play huge role in forming our worldview. The desire to protect self-interests may even force us into delusions, even if the facts suggest otherwise. I am especially reminded of this due to the on-going debate about taxes on the highest-income groups. Even though the taxes on the highest income earners in the U.S. are significantly lower than many other developed countries, most of the richest Americans are opposed to tax raise on their group despite the fact that doing so will help reduce budget deficit and benefit the country in the long term. Nonetheless, there are dissenters among richest Americans as well and Bill Gates is one of them. Bill Gates advocates higher income tax on the rich even though such a move will have a major impact on his net worth, given his vast fortune. But Bill Gates has the wisdom to realize the situation and not be unduly influenced by personal interests in everything. This is why I want to connect with Bill Gates because only wise people have the courage to do the right thing, even at the expense of personal interests. Being with Bill Gates will also help me become better at recognizing bias and make decisions that advance the overall interests of the society, even if they may cost me personally.

I will also be able to improve the world by partnering with Bill Gates because Gates doesn’t only focus on the short term but also the long term. Even more than that, Gates has a global perspective on everything. When we hear about most of the rich people who engage in philanthropy, they often focus their philanthropic activities on the country of origin or adopted country while most of Bill Gates philanthropic activities have been focused on countries outside the U.S. Gates understands that we do not have responsibilities towards our own country but towards the whole world. Even in the age of globalization, few people have the wisdom to adopt a truly global mind unless commercial interests are involved but Gates take a global view on everything from economic to social issues. By partnering with Gates, I will become part of his efforts to improve the quality of everyone in the world, no matter where they come from.

The way we spend our lives is shaped by the beliefs we hold and our worldviews. Gates believes that everyone should have access to the same rights and basic necessities irrespective of their background whether national, cultural, economic, or social. Gates has the wisdom to see that it’s unfair some people have greater rights and better quality of life just because they have won genetic lottery by being born in well-to-do families and/or in rich countries. Few people have the wisdom to be objective thinkers like Gates and address issues in which they may have no personal stake or interest. This is why Gates is especially focused on improving the lives of some of the least fortunate people on the earth. I also hold the same value system that we cannot create a fair world if our fates are determined at birth.

The pace of technology over the last few years has been astonishing by any measure and I can only imagine what next few years may bring. I am not fascinated by technology because it makes life exciting but how it has been helping us solve some of the most complex economic and social problems in highly cost-efficient manner. There are few people in the world who understand technology or have an idea of the future as well as Bill Gates. This is also why I want to connect with Bill Gates because he doesn’t only have resources but also an unrivaled understanding of technology and its potential. I would like to tap into his knowledge and resources to improve the lives of less-fortunate citizens in both the developed and developing world including those with disabilities, lack of access to clean water, and those without access to even basic education and/or healthcare. Economic resources are important but their efficient use depends on ideas and Bill Gates has both of them in abundance.

I read somewhere Leonard Da Vinci claimed everything is connected to everything else and I could not agree more. I read on a wide range of subject matters and I have observed that knowledge in different subject matters help us better understand how the world works. Not surprisingly, Bill Gates also understands the importance of knowledge on a wide range of subject matters and one only needs to follow Bill Gates on social media to know that Gates is an avid reader. I may have access to books Bill Gates also reads but I cannot match Bill Gates’ access to experts and professionals who write these books or do the pioneering work in their respective fields. Thus, connecting with Bill Gates provide me with access to ideas that I cannot access anywhere else and will further improve my knowledge and understanding of the world. Additional knowledge may even help me come with more creative solutions to some of the major problems facing humanity.

I also want to connect with Bill Gates because he wants to challenge old traditions in order to improve the overall welfare of the society. When someone with the same power and influence as Bill Gates does something, it can set a powerful precedent for others. Bill Gates has famously claimed he will leave most of his wealth to the society and not to his children which is unlike what most rich people and families do. Bill Gates has even influenced his friend Warren Buffet to do the same and many other billionaires have also pledged to leave a substantial portion of their net worth to the society. If we look around, there are many other such traditions that have persisted for centuries even though their costs to the society exceed any potential benefits. By connecting with Bill Gates, I may be able to convince him to lend his influence to other social issues around the world as well, especially in developing countries.

I also want to connect with Bill Gates because I believe national boundaries will continue to disappear over time and the whole world may look like the way U.S. is now. Countries will have sovereignty but at the same time there will also be a global organization that will have influence over every countries and will help promote further economic, cultural, and social integration among them. We normally adopt short term view but Bill Gates is one of those individuals who have adopted a long term view on global issues. Bill Gates understands global issues not only due to his business career but also his work as a philanthropist which allows him to interact with national governments all over the world. Thus, by connecting with Bill Gates, I will also have better understanding of how global and political landscape will change over time and could increase awareness to encourage public activism. I believe the days of nationalism are about to be over and it is for the good because nationalism leads to divisions rather than global peace.

Last but not least, I also want to connect with Bill Gates because he will be an ideal mentor. There are many people who have made a name in their respective fields but not everyone is worthy of being a mentor. A mentor has to be a good leader, an exemplary global citizen, and whose actions speak louder than words and Gates fulfills all these requirements. Many people speak of fairness and justice but Gates has demonstrated his commitment to these principles through his actions. He has even decided to leave most of his wealth to the society rather than his children because he truly desires to leave a better world to the future generations.

I have high degree of self-confidence but I also understand we cannot accomplish everything by ourselves. This is why it is important to choose mentors carefully and form partnerships with those who share our values or dreams. The world may know Bill Gates as a technology pioneer but I believe his legacy will be mostly due to his work outside the technology sector.

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