Student Spotlight

Name: Ethan M. Smith

Age: 17

Grade: 12

State: Missouri

Year you became member in Mu Eta Sigma:

Describe why you enjoy math: I love math because of how it directly relates to the real world. It is required throughout our lives, and without math, the world as we know it would not be. I especially love it because it can be used to change the world. By utilizing math, one can change lives forever.

Describe how you anticipate using math in your future: I plan to study mechanical engineering and use that knowledge to build schools in impoverished countries around the world. I want to use math to positively change the world and enable those that would otherwise have little to no education to have the opportunity to study and have successful lives.

I have been involved in my community through the following service projects: Helped in construction of a home for troubled girls at Pearl of Grace Ranch in Oklahoma, served as student team leader and coordinator of Project Christmas Blessing in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, participated in three mission trips to Huruma Dolor Orphanage in Kenya, am a weekly volunteer at Least of These Christian County Food Pantry, and have participated in several youth outreach trips in various locations in Mexico and Africa.

My favorite project was: Project Christmas Blessing (PCB). PCB is an annual project that fundraises money and distributes gift packs in impoverished countries around the world. Because I am bilingual, I facilitated communication in nearly all aspects of the trip including rentals, product purchasing, and distribution. I loved seeing that giving the little I had could help make such a great impact on so many people’s lives. I also loved seeing people having their individual needs provided for via the project.

I have set the following goals for myself for the next:


  • 1 year: I desire to have graduated from high school and be enrolled in Missouri University of Science and Technology studying mechanical engineering.


  • 5 years:  I plan to have obtained my bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and be working for an organization building schools and battling poverty.

My parents have inspired me to consider: choosing a career path that allows me to serve those in poverty.

My favorite subject in school is, or has been: Spanish

My favorite extra-curricular activity is, or has been: Speech and Debate.

The most challenging thing I have ever experienced is: having my father almost die from Cerebral Malaria.

My greatest accomplishment to date has been: helping raise over $20,000 for PCB, an international poverty relief program, to aid migrants and the impoverished in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.