Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Let's make fun of the Truman scholars

In the spirit of the Who's Who of 25 Year Olds, it's time for a post about the two OSU Truman finalists, Yoonhee Ha and Dave Knapp.

Really all the good quotes belong to Dave Knapp...
"My goals are to receive my Ph.D. in economics and eventually develop a successful model for making economic development profitable so that it can be expanded on a global level and make economic development more worthwhile for countries and companies," Knapp said in an e-mail.

"I have always had a passion for working with groups of people to help them operate better together, an idea which is remarkably similar to that of economic development, except that economic development is on a larger scale."

Is there a synonym for "economic development"?

Imagine what the essays he wrote for the scholarship must have been like! If you use the same two words over and over again, does each instance factor into your total word count?

Additionally, what does it mean to make "economic development profitable"? Is that really a challenge?

It's somehow incongruous (ironic, even?) that the guy with the most normal sounding name has the most trouble forming an English sentence.

Later on it is revealed...
"I am most proud of my work with Circle K," Knapp said. "In Ohio State Circle K, there are true, lasting friendships that mean a lot more than just simply a weekly meeting. It is a great group of people that I am proud to give my time and effort to."

Isn't Circle K the convenience store featured in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure?

I know lots of people who are overly proud of their work in service groups and tend to prop up other service groups just for reciprocity (so that other people can prop up their group), and not even they have anything good to say about Circle K.

You see, Circle K actually was once "Circle Jerk," a group advertised in men's restrooms, until someone cleaning the restroom tried to erase it and only could get rid of the "Jer." Ever since then, we've had "Circle K."

I don't have much to say about Yoonhee Ha. She did have a strange quote...
Ha's goal is to serve less fortunate areas of the world medically; her motivation stems from personal experiences.

"When I was in the third grade, my younger sister Jeehee was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer," she said. "My family and I thank God for saving her life, and it was during those early years that I spent a lot of time in different hospitals and saw that physicians could make a difference in other people's lives."

While I'm happy to hear that her sister survived the cancer, I am puzzled by the juxtaposition of gratitude to God and as a drive to work in medicine. Was it God that cured the sister? Or was it the medicine? Can you have it both ways? What if it goes the other way and someone dies due to a rare disease? Did God let the person down? Or was it the lack of medicine?

Ha was the one who ended up winning a Truman scholarship. I think it's pretty clear that she fits the part better than Knapp.

So congratulations to them. Hopefully they actually do something with their support, unlike Melanie Wood and Reid Barton (see Who's Who of 25 Year Olds).


Jenn Onofrio said...

Where are my potshots?

Theo said...

Well, I wasn't making fun of ALL Truman scholars, just the two OSU ones. :)

That being said, you smell kinda funny... And what people don't realize about that photo of you in your icon is that it's not black and white. It's full color -- you're just actually that pale.


Jenn Onofrio said...

Ted, before I respond to this, need I remind you that your mugshot is of a scruffy, white, panting dog? Not that there's anything wrong with that...