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Mr. Fix-It This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

For the past nine years, much of my spare time has been dedicated to taking things apart. I enjoy fixing just about everything from electronics to vehicles.

I first discovered my love for dismantling things when I was eight. I was playing with one of my many remote-control cars when it shot down the stairs of my deck and broke into pieces, revealing its inner workings. I had no idea what they were or what they did, but I was fascinated by all the gizmos inside – the motors and circuit boards that made it move. I began to take apart all of my remote-control toys to see if they were similar.

As I got older, I began to understand how these parts worked. Then I realized that if I took something apart, I could use the pieces to make something else. This led to the creation of many Frankenstein devices – like an elevator for my Lego buildings, electric Knex cars, and motorized wooden boats – all made from electric motors and circuit boards.

Once I even created my own helicopter using parts of a remote-control car and some Styrofoam. I shaped the foam into a fuselage and used the car's plastic to create rotors. The motor wasn't powerful enough for sustained flight, so I stole one from a monster truck and soldered it onto the circuit board.

I guess my love for fixing things came from my father. Ever since I could hold a screwdriver I have followed him around, helping repair things. As I grew, he began to teach me not only how to fix things but also how to build them. Together, we have completed lots of projects, including docks, tables, and walls. He taught me how to hammer, cut wood, and make things level and strong.

When it came time for me to learn to repair cars, I instantly loved it. My first project was an oil change. When it was done and I had grease on my hands and oil on my face, I felt accomplished and proud. Since that first oil change, my knowledge of cars has grown immensely. I can fix just about anything on a car, and what I can't fix on my own, my father and I do together. He has taught me almost everything about cars.

I still take things apart, although now they are much more complex and a lot bigger. I am currently working on two inventions, neither of which exists yet, to my knowledge. I believe that these two ideas could change the way we look at transportation and recreation.

I always hear people say you should choose your career not based on money, but on what you love. I am lucky that I found my passion at such a young age. I know that becoming an engineer will give me the opportunity to take my interest in creating new things and apply it to the world.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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