“How and why stuff works,” is what physics is all about and Lucas Arthur, Mat-Su Career & Technical High School senior, headed to MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is all about physics. “I knew in 4th grade I wanted to work in physics,” Lucas explained. When asked how he knew about physics at this early age, Lucas said, “I read a lot. I learned about physics by reading a lot of books.”
Like most high school seniors, Lucas has a full schedule, in addition to his philosophy class. His courses include Linear Algebra (a MIT course) and Comparative World Religions. “The Linear Algebra course has been my most challenging this year,” he explained, “with topics such as solving problems with as many as 100 dimensional spaces.” The last problem he solved, collaboratively with other MIT students, he said, “It took me seven hours to solve it. The final answer was five.”
At MIT, Lucas said, “What would be considered cheating at other schools is the methodology required. The problems are so complex, to solve them, it will require me to work collaboratively with others. It is not possible to solve the problems alone.” Lucas plans a double major at MIT in physics and nuclear engineering. What are his long-range plans? He may want to teach, work for NASA, or in his words, “Once I learn something, I want to learn something new and find the new challenge.”
In addition to his academic work, Lucas runs cross-country for Colony High School. When asked about hobbies, he said, “I don’t have much time for hobbies. I do fool around in my chemistry lab in our basement. I read a lot. I also am on the cross-country ski team, but without a lot of snow, we haven’t had as successful a run.” Lucas was at Colony Middle School and decided on CTHS, because it offered more flexibility for his academic interests and has proven a path to success.