Wednesday, April 29, 2015


I bought this book because it was on my recommended list on Amazon. I really was expecting it to be super light and fun to read while I was in California for NSBE41. I was pleasantly surprised when the book I got sucked into was full of quips, math, and subjects I never even thought about before. It is full of interesting parallels and correlations, for example, sumo wrestlers and school teachers cheat on their exams or fights for the same reasons. It was literally impossible to put down - I read on the airplane and fell asleep with the book in my hands because I was exhausted but wanted to read this book so badly. It also made me think a lot about what work economists do and the skill set that that degree provides to be able to sift through large amounts of data and get these great results. Engineers, especially industrial engineers, do a lot of data sifting and analysis to find areas of improvement. 

My favorite section was understanding about what makes students good students and the differences between white and black students. One of our big wishes in NSBE is to see 10K black engineers graduating by 2025. To do this, we have to increase the proficiency of math within young black children. The way that this book ties in is that students who are black are disadvantaged due to their likelihood to not have the same resources due to neighborhood or other factors but do just as well as their white peers when given all the same. This gives me a lot of hope because for a long time, there is this idea that black students were not smart enough to be engineers - all they really need is the same opportunities or a leveling of the playing field when it comes to education quality when they are young.  

I would say that if you want a really good non fiction book to read for a trip or a long car ride, this is the book for you! As always, I buy used copies of books for a penny and the shipping is $3.99, which makes reading in college super affordable and easy to do if you don't know if you will like a book. 

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