Update: The embed link doesn’t seem to be working for me but the episode is from S1:E5 Purpose.
I’m a huge fan of the HONY stuff but in this episode, the young man around the 11:45 mark (and also a bit at the end) is an undergrad math major. His discussion of the difficulties of achieving in math and his admirable self-determination sounded almost exactly how I used to talk when I was an undergrad math major.
Please don’t get me wrong, academia and mathematics is a world full of exciting work and wonderfully positive experiences, but like all things in life it also has low points. We don’t often talk about these low points – but this young man shared his experiences and I applaud him for doing so.
A further remark: Being a grad student in math has allowed me to travel to fantastic places around the country and around the world. I also get to meet numerous highly intelligent people from very diverse places and cultural backgrounds. I really do love my job, but I can recognize that it has problems too. As a young adult I’ve learned that you can love something very much and still accept that it’s not perfect.