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What makes me, me?

Updated: Jul 14, 2021

Hello, I am Jesse Erwin a high school student, I will be going into grade 10 come September but I'm currently studying in the Illuminate leadership academy. I have been challenged by Sam Thiara during a recent workshop to come up with a personal statement, and the 5 core elements, "the five things that you are not willing to compromise in life and career". While pondering the answers to this question I had great difficulty coming up with an answer, this is something that I hadn't considered before not even the smallest spec of thought towards it. It was a question that cant be answered with outside assistance, only I know what is important to me and what I value over all else. though lengthy the process to realize these values were I came to the conclusion that my 5 core elements were as follows:


Honesty is a trait I value more then any other, if I cannot trust my own word then how can I trust the one of any others. I make a point to tell the truth always, even if it may come back to bite me. I have been lied to extensively in the past and whenever it comes time for the truth to be told, and I find out that I have been lied not only is trust eroded between myself and the liar in question, it makes me feel stupid for not seeing through it and the person who told the lie feels guilty. This out come is sub-optimal, a lie can never have a positive outcome regardless of if people believe it, it will eat away inside and affect how you think. It is for this reason that Honesty is one of my core values


I prefer to spend my time alone often behind a computer screen where I can be with my thoughts, and I can be clear to think . This attribute defines much of what I am and continue to be. I cherish the time I get to spend in quiet, no people around able to think clearly and concisely, make sense of what's going on in my head and reflect on my surroundings. If not for this attribute I would be a vastly different person, in both how I look, think and act.

3. Friendship

Though I may not have an abundance of friends, but I value them greatly. We support each other, They are there for me when in need, and I there for them. Humans are naturally social animals, and we formulate bonds with other people as a result. These bonds are long lasting and meaningful, for example I have friends that I have had for over 10 years I know if something is wrong I can be there to support them and ensure that they are going to be okay.


Curiosity and the general pursuit of knowledge is an element which I possess on a large scale, I enjoy learning in all aspects. Whether it be the Canadian landings in Dieppe during 1942, or the difference between carbon nanotube FETs or finFETs in semi-conductors I will listen and learn attentively. There is always more to learn about, whether it be in or about the past present or future, I will always be looking to learn and better myself as a result.


Integrity is a very important trait to me, upholding my morals and keeping my word. not to toot my own colloquial horn but, I never make a promise I cant keep, I ensure that whenever someone needs me I can be there, I am always patient, and I make sure that I can be depended on to be there or get something done.

These are the 5 things that make me who I was yesterday, who I am today and who I will be tomorrow. After I came up with my 5 core elements, I was due to find my personal statement, what set of words can describe what I embody, what I seek to do? After much consideration and thought, I came to the conclusion that this would be the best way to put it into words.

Personal statement:

Though I've only been around 15 some odd years, I have learned much about the inner workings of society and the way the world works. Time, and time again we see people trying to prove themselves different, from others to be individual to not conform to the norms that have been set. And the people that do these things are called "weird" or they are discriminated against, and they are cast out for trying to be themselves, in response to this I say why do these norms exist in the first place, we are all different people living different lives we are all different people so why do we try to be the same? We all have a sense of individuality and we should embrace it, we cannot truly be anyone ourselves. Everyone expresses themselves in different ways, whether it be art, or building a computer everyone is individual. People are branded as "weird" as have I on many of occasion from oodles of people, but what's wrong with being weird? what's wrong with being yourself, maybe we should all strive to be weird, to be ourselves.

This was only a portion of Mr.Thiara's workshop but it was a very powerful one, I would like to thank him for giving me the opportunity to do this, and the opportunity and ability to learn about myself.


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