Early 1890s, the parents of a boy in Kumbakonam, India, couldn’t afford to provide for him, so they sent him to live with his maternal grandparents. During that time the boy developed strong interest and aptitude for mathematics.
In his early teens he managed to master advanced trigonometry, and started discovering sophisticated theorems on his own. At the age of 16, someone gave him a copy of G. S. Carr‘s A Synopsis of Elementary Results in Pure and Applied Mathematics. He studied the book in details, and the following year he independently developed and investigated some famous mathematicians theories. The boy’s name was Srinivasa Ramanujan.
After dropping out of college to earn a living as a mathematician and support his family, no institution was willing to hire him. Some believed he was a fluke, others were held back by the fact he had no formal higher education. While working as a clerk to make ends meet, Ramanujan was linked with a professor at Cambridge University, Godfrey Herold Hardy (G.H. Hardy). From there, with the help of Hardy and others in his circle, Ramanujan made substantial contributions to pure mathematics, including field of mathematical analysis, number theory, infinite series, and came up with solutions to mathematical problems previously considered unsolvable.
Need to Nurture talent
A lot of us believe the intelligent people who are to shape our future as a civilization are scientists, economists, engineers, scholars from prestigious universities and colleges. Or that the talented people are somehow packed in few cities in the developed countries. Therefore it become very convenient to ignore the rest of the world, the fact there are a lot of very talented individuals living in the underdeveloped parts of the world whose talents can be crucial to solving some of the existential problems we face as a civilization. The cold hard fact is most of these kids will not have the chance to develop their talent due to lack opportunity and access to necessary resources.
What we often fail to realize is the fact the accomplished individuals known to us have been given the chance to succeed. They have had the resources and support necessary to succeed. And in majority, that’s the reason they could have succeeded. The talented people in the underdeveloped countries need these very same opportunities and support in order to succeed and contribute to the advancement of our civilization.
Need for more problem solvers
We have had major breakthroughs in science and technology, but the truth is there are still a ton of problems that baffle our most brilliant scientists, economist and other scholars. Numerous diseases are still mysteries to researchers and doctors; cancer is estimated to kill about 7.5 million people annually, whole populations being displaced due to sea level rise caused by global warming, and scientists are still puzzled by the human brain, etc.
Some people nature have equipped with the talent to help figure some of these riddles are not able to attend prestigious universities. They don’t have the mean to be where geniuses are expected to be found. Therefore, it is imperative that we find and link them to their G.H. Hardy. For the main problem in the underdeveloped countries is definitely not a lack of talent, but a lack of access to resource.
When we provide all talented people with a chance to excel, we increase our pool of problem solvers, innovators, of the people pushing the world forward. We increase the odd of the human civilization’s continued existence.