Honors Essay

Please submit the Honors College Essay. The essay should be 750 words or less. The Honors College would like you to respond to the following prompt: "Our experience of the universe, our planet Earth, and the history of humankind continues to present unanswered questions and unresolved problems. If you were to choose one question or problem to investigate during your undergraduate years at Mason, what would it be? Why are you interested in the topic, what research do you wish to conduct during your studies concerning this, and what do you hope to gain from your inquiry?


My uncle, a father of two who works as a waiter at a Marriott hotel in Fairfax Virginia, had his identity stolen in late 2014 by someone in New York City. For the most part, our everyday lives are a series of passing decisions; in an ever-evolving technology world, keeping our personal information and data shouldn’t be something we have to actively monitor on every single device that is vulnerable. How can the everyday blue collar worker save himself or herself from the growing threat of cyber-attacks and hacking?

My aspirations had always been towards programming, but just recently have I realized my true aspiration. While coding an application to encrypt a set data array, I suddenly realized that I had added three more functions that were not even supposed to be in the final product. I knew that my ultimate goal was to produce a program that could do anything and everything. My life felt as if it had begun anew. I started making a program that incorporated all of my previous projects, and in a day, had a very slow program that could not run properly due to all of the things being loaded at once. To fix this problem, I created a program that would not load the individual pieces until a button was fixed. This program worked...

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