The Beauty of Simplicity

The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?


Two hours later, even with my cart stockpiled with an assortment of possible parts, I strode aisle-to-aisle scrutinizing each item, and mentally assembling the bits I had selected to generate the ideal model. It was hard to avoid the weird looks from parents as they pulled their children closer to pass me and my “madman mutter”. Having assumed the responsibility of purchasing the material to compete in the annual Massachusetts Science Olympiad for the event Wright Stuff, I was determined that our model plane would hover for the longest time possible, as per the prerequisite.

After the extended shopping spree, my partner and I pondered upon the design and mechanics of the model using the gamut of parts at our disposal. We built and tested various models, over and over again, before arriving at our “perfect” version. However, in order to add more “zing”, we complemented our creation with a rubber motor and a stabilizer, reasoning that these embellishments would ensure a superior lift and lengthier float, thereby providing us a better shot at winning.

“Your plane is disqualified”, pronounced the event coordinator at the initial check-in. “Rubber motors are prohibited.”

My partner and I exchanged flabbergasted looks; we had read...

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