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Posts by tdshah1
Name: Tanmay Shah
Joined: Aug 17, 2014
Last Post: Sep 1, 2014
Threads: 5
Posts: 8  
Likes: 4
From: United States of America
School: NCHS

Displayed posts: 13
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tdshah1   
Sep 1, 2014
Undergraduate / Winter Reading and Dragons [2]

In the college application process, you are constantly prompted for a list of your achievements, awards, and accomplishments. While this information is useful to us, we are interested in hearing more about you. Describe an event, achievement, or experience of which you are particularly proud but that will not show up on a resume, may not garner any recognition, and does not appear anywhere else on your admission application. This essay should not exceed 1,000 words in length.

**Would appreciate feedback on whether it is authentic, specific, and creatively answers the prompt without writing to "impress" the adcom**

It was about 1 pm on a cold December day and all the kids in my 3rd grade class were busy bringing dragons to life and mixing strange substances in solutions. No, this wasn't a fantasy video game. Rather, it was Mrs. Davis' eight year olds busy coloring as we waited for the Bloomington Library lady to come and speak to us about some sort of reading program.

"Hello kids! Who's excited to curl up with a good book this winter?" The librarian began her talk with a rather sweet voice and invited us all to challenge ourselves in the next two weeks. I decided my challenge to myself would be to read a long chapter book for the first time, and with that I signed up for my first winter reading program.

I was very excited to begin, so I went to the library the last day of school before the holiday break and asked for a good book that I could read. The old librarian (I wondered at the time why they were all old!) took me to a shelf where they kept the chapter books. I followed her, but my eyes fell onto the big shelf devoted to the Harry Potter series. I remembered my challenge I had given myself, and I asked if she could pull a Harry Potter book out for me. Surprised with my request, she handed me the first book in the series...

My next memory with the book is going home and finishing all of it.

As I immerse myself in Egyptian history, Shakespearan dramas, and double slit interference theory nine years later, the memory of picking out that Harry Potter book sticks out for me because it was the first time I had read any book with chapters and no pretty pictures on every other page. Moreover, it was the first time I had academically challenged myself. As constant learners, we are all always starting something new, and especially for kids, starting something new means there will be initially be some struggles. In my case, the struggles happened to be tackling a few big vocabulary words but more importantly bringing myself to believe I was actually reading a big book full of tiny words. Just like any other eight year old kid, I too watched TV, played outside, and participated in sports, but because of this memory, I feel I was a self-driven reader and learner and am to this day.

With the many endeavors my childhood and high school years have brought me, I send my gratitude to the people like that sweet old librarian in my 3rd grade classroom that have challenged the status quo of my intellectual vitality. As I go into my last year of high school and fill out the countless college essays and applications that require me to reflect on my past, I have realized that what I've done so far-whether that be read Harry Potter for the first time, give a speech for the first time, or even do well on my math tests for the first time-is just the beginning. I only hope to do and do more, for the sweetest joys of life come with the recognition that I'm not special.
tdshah1   
Sep 1, 2014
Undergraduate / "sea shell" - FAU APPLICATION SHORT ESSAY (140 CHARACTERS) [6]

You need to work on the first and last sentence. First sentence is much too vague and never use "one". This sentence isn't unique to you- its something thousands of others could copy and say they wrote. Also, don't ever end with a quote from someone else in an essay that asks about you. It looks as if you don't have enough opinion of your own to share and are just going to google to find filler material.

I would appreciate if you could go to my page and give me feedback on my Case Western essay.
tdshah1   
Sep 1, 2014
Scholarship / 'I always used to be a curious person' - scholarship in manufacturing engineering; motivation letter [14]

Your first sentence is what I would focus on most. If you are starting out with that sentence, it seems very bland because it is telling not showing. For example, I can start an essay and say "I have always been very passionate about foreign policy". Ok- the reader would easily believe me, but truth is I have no interest in foreign policy whatsoever. So instead I would start with something that is unique to you. Best idea I can think of is use a narrative.

I would appreciate if you can go to my page and give me feedback on my Case Western essay. Thanks
tdshah1   
Aug 25, 2014
Undergraduate / The World of Harry Potter is the world I came from - MIT essay [2]

Would appreciate feedback overall on any and all aspects.

Describe the world you come from; for example, your family, clubs, school, community, city, or town. How has that world shaped your dreams and aspirations?(*) (200-250 words)

As I drown myself daily in Egyptian history, marginal distributions, and double slit interference theory, I occasionally think of a memory. In the winter break of my 3rd grade, I had picked up and spontaneously finished the entire Harry Potter series. This memory sticks out for me because it was the first time I had read any book without any pretty pictures on every other page. Moreover, it expresses my background of being a courageous and constant learner.

In college, I hope to enrich myself by being part of the people that make the campus what it is. Any great school will have top notch academics, but only a school like MIT will allow me to incorporate my familiarity and fondness for learning to my academic interests that have developed through exposure to learning opportunities in high school. One of my interests to develop computer/AI technologies that have relevance to medicine, and my enthusiasm for this endeavor came from a novel I read on the future of computer science and a presentation I made at a community technology conference on medical technologies.

With the many endeavors my childhood and high school years have brought me, I send my gratitude to the people that have challenged my status quo. As I fill out the countless college essays and applications that require me to reflect on my past, I have realized that what I've done so far-whether that be read Harry Potter for the first time, give a speech for the first time, or even do well on my math tests for the first time-is just the beginning. I only hope to do and do more, for the sweetest joys of life come with the recognition that I'm not special.
tdshah1   
Aug 25, 2014
Undergraduate / Lucked out of the gaokao ; UW Madison Admisson Essay [5]

Good job. however, I think you spend too much time describing the scene of the exams and don't spend enough time focusing on you. the college wants to hear about you. although reading about these exams from your perspective is nice, it isn't personalized to you.

also, just saying near the end that you feel very privileged doesn't cut it. many students are like you- they come from hard backgrounds with poor living conditions, less freedom, etc. saying you shouldn't let this opportunity go to waste is also vague- how, what, how could the college possibly help with this?
tdshah1   
Aug 19, 2014
Writing Feedback / Unlimited Golden Stars- MIT essay [2]

I am looking for overall feedback on content and structure and if my logic/sentences make sense.

Tell us about the most significant challenge you've faced or something important that didn't go according to plan. How did you manage the situation?(200-250 words)

Writing research papers has come fairly easily to me, so it wasn't until this challenge of writing college essays that I was truly forced to discover myself. I've grabbed a handle of the situation by doing something my 2nd grade teacher would give me unlimited golden stars for: rereading.

I'd never thought about a specific vision for a career path until I came across an essay topic asking me to recount how a specific life experience has led me to think about my future goals. After rereading the question countless times, I figured the life experience I could talk about was the volunteering/shadowing I have done since freshman year in the hospital ICU and ER.

My activities, interest survey results, and coursework indicate my strong drive for computer science. However, CS being as broad as it is, I've realized I need to narrow down the variety of career opportunities to something unique to me. The idea of incorporating healthcare became a forging reality as I discovered several possible entryways of interest: writing software for analysis of medical research data, development of new imaging systems.

I handled the challenge by embracing it; I tackled the prompt's demands while at the same time realizing how I could incorporate my volunteer work with my defined interest in computer science. After all, academic endeavors should be pursued ideally not for a personal satisfaction but for the good they will do others.
tdshah1   
Aug 19, 2014
Writing Feedback / SAT topic: Is knowledge a benefit or a budern? [3]

Good essay, maybe try talking about how else knowledge is a benefit besides in the tech realm. Use more examples from a variety of disciplines to show how knowledge is a benefit. For example, doctors- people may think this is all math and science. but, doctors need to be well versed in the humanities so they can be cognacent of different historical backgrounds and culture their patients bring to them. If a patient claims worshipping the sun for 10 days straight will heal his major wound, the doctor needs to know how to handle this- and knowledge from the humanities can help.
tdshah1   
Aug 19, 2014
Writing Feedback / IES: the state pay all students tuition fees, or students should pay themselves? [7]

College education is a business- and any good business knows to offer good incentives to its clients.
And I would argue that the students gain education not just for themselves but rather for the society..here's a quote from a recent commencement speech I heard that might put things in context for you: "Exercise free will and creative, independent thought not for the satisfactions they will bring you, but for the good they will do others."
tdshah1   
Aug 18, 2014
Undergraduate / Hey Roomie! First things first- peanut butter: Stanford essay [2]

I would appreciate feedback on
1) the flow of the paragraphs in terms of how smoothly one flows to the next
2) the actual content- I tried to write specific things I do that show I am unique and thoughtful and not just copy/pasting essays
3) the tone- too informal or usage of strong words?

Virtually all of our undergraduates live on campus. Write a note to your future roommate that reveals something about you or that will help your roommate -- and us -- know you better. (250 word limit.)

Hi Jo-Jo,
My name is Jim. I'm excited to be your roommate! So first things first, peanut butter. I love it. It goes on everything. I live to eat, so I hope to exchange food and traditions from our two cultures. But on top of pigging out and studying hard, I think it'll be important to develop a sense of humor amongst ourselves to enjoy the first year experience.

You see, ever since I became obsessed with Harry Potter and won his autograph from a reading contest, I've been intrigued with celebrities. So, sometimes I like to pick a Hollywood star at random and watch his interviews. Yes, laugh at me, but then tell me, who doesn't get a kick out of watching Jimmy Fallon arm wrestling Jack Nicholson?

On a more serious note, California has much to offer, and being youngsters, I really hope you'll join me to visit the Industrial Park, bike through University Avenue, embrace the beauty of the Golden Gate Bridge and the Pacific Coast, and take in every other golden opportunity presented.

So as we begin a new friendship and chapter of our lives, I'd really just like to end by saying that I don't really know how I feel about those guys who suck up to important people through really eloquent words and usage of existential quotes that sum up the paragon of wisdom that is their physics professor. Oh, and I'm from the Midwest, so I call it soda.

See you soon!
Jim
tdshah1   
Aug 18, 2014
Undergraduate / How does USD stand out amongst all of the other colleges to which you are applying? [3]

You need to focus on more specifics. Saying " UC san diego stands out because of its close knit community and active student life on campus" sounds very vague- there are thousands of other colleges that sentence can be applied to. show that you did the research on the college, and focus on you- find a specific passion of yours and talk about how the college will help you 1) live that passion 2) flourish in college and beyond.
tdshah1   
Aug 17, 2014
Undergraduate / 'I gather some tips on how Hollywood stars talk, act, and present themselves' - MIT essay [2]

I am looking for feedback on
1) the activity I have described itself. I know MIT looks for unique, creative, 'weird', people- so I figured this pastime of mine would fit in.

2) the tone of the sentences
3) what other things one can gain watching celebrities off-screen (besides how they talk, act, present themselves)

We know you lead a busy life, full of activities, many of which are required of you. Tell us about something you do for the pleasure of it. (100 words or fewer)

I enjoy volunteering my time and skills because it allows me to grow my interpersonal and technical skills while helping others, but even paid health professionals admit they don't simply gain a sense of fulfillment and reward every time from caring for someone. Rather, here's the real answer: I find it intriguing that celebrities are paid exorbitantly. So, I occasionally pick one and watch his interviews. Hollywood stars are taken to be the paragons of perfection, so I gather some tips on how they talk, act, and present themselves off-screen. And of course, I enjoy being able to step away from my reality and getting a good laugh from Jimmy Fallon arm wrestling Jack Nicholson.

Thanks!
tdshah1   
Aug 17, 2014
Undergraduate / "My father was a great man, I looked up to him" - Common App Essay 2015 [3]

Great job with this essay. People tend to pick this topic because they have something extraordinary to say, and it reflects from your essay that you do.

One thing that you might consider fixing: in the paragraph where you talk about you choosing your own path and not having your dad interefere in anyway, you might want to edit the line that says "you got to break the old you down completely". A college would typically like to see someone who can really use whatever meaningful things he has learned to change himself in the future and through college. With this bold statement you make, it shows you are forgetting everything about your past; this might deter a college.

Overall, I couldn't find really much else to fix; your story is unique considering your dad was a great man and a doctor, it's captivating to read.

What colleges are you using this essay for?
Let me know if you have any other questions with other essays or this one. I'd also really appreciate if you could take a look at my essay.