Unanswered [6] | Urgent [0]
  

Home / Scholarship   % width Posts: 10

Bamboo huts - QuestBridge (scholarship) Biographical Essay- Need An Insight


tkuikel 1 / 3  
Sep 25, 2015   #1
Can someone read essay please, and give me a feedback!
It would be great if you edit it!
Thank you!

We are interested in learning more about you and the context in which you have grown up, formed your aspirations, and accomplished your academic successes. Please describe the factors and challenges that have most shaped your personal life and aspirations. How have these factors helped you to grow? (800 words)

(I think there is too much background, idk what to do. It defines who I am but I feel like they are elongating this essay but I also want this essay to show where I get my inspiration, not what I want to do in the future.)

I was born without any goals, responsibilities, or a future.
Or at least, that is what I used to think.

I was born in a refugee camp in Nepal, surrounded by bamboo huts and unsanitary lifestyle. We seldom received food rations, clothes, and bamboos to continue our lives. I felt like we were lost in an oblivion, uncertain, hopeless and unaware of the unknown, unappealing future.

My parents, forced to leave their homeland of Bhutan due to ethnic cleansing, took refuge in unpleasant camps in Nepal with the help of the UNHCR and intended to live a new life and raise my brother and me. Being born in a situation like that, I felt like there was no goal and responsibility for me at all. Although rough and unpleasant, my life was fully supported by hard work of my parents. There was a roof to live under, clothes to cover my body and when I came back from playing around with my friends, food on the table. I had no necessity to do something; I had no goals to accomplish.

In 2009, a program, International Organization for Migration, saw the hardships my parents were enduring and decided to resettle refugees to different developed countries. My parents decided to resettle in the United States and were delighted and relieved as they were heading toward the land of opportunity and great future. In the other hand, I was indifferent and apathetic; I didn't care where we were about to go as long as my parents were the one taking care me. But then the last days in the refugee camp arrived that changed my life forever.

"You will have to take care of you family in this journey, Tika," said my uncle.
"Say 'I need to go the bathroom' if anyone needs to go pee in the plane," said my cousin.

All my relatives had something to teach me, as I was the oldest son, in order to prepare me to take care of my parents and my brother in this journey. All of sudden, I realized that I was swarmed with responsibilities. My parents were not anymore the ones doing everything for the family, but it was me, who had to carefully bring us and settle down in the other side of the world. Living eleven years in a refugee camp, I was not at all familiar with the language and the culture of the nation toward which we were venturing. The last night in the refugee camp, I was both frightened and awakened.

That day I thought about the future but a lot more about the past. I could finally comprehend all the sacrifices my parents had done for my future. Despite leaving their native land, they worked harshly in a place with no opportunity to keep me healthy, send me to school and put food on the table to make my brother and me happy. I remembered my dad reluctantly buying us candy and meat, when we went to the local bazaar, even though they costed more than what he had. I also remembered the previous Diwali, when my brother and I had fireworks, fancy clothes, and meat even though my parents were wearing old, worn clothes. I felt disappointed in myself that day, but I accepted my responsibilities to my family as that was the way to give back what my parents had done for me.

When we arrived at the United states, my family was my responsibility in certain needs because I was the only that spoke broken English. I explained to my parents the mails we received. I wrote many checks to pay for rent and bills. As school started, I got committed improve my English through the help of friends, teachers and the library. This made everything easier: taking my parents to the hospital, welfare office or brother's parent-teacher conference. I still do these things after school as my parents have not had the chance to frequently go to English class because they have to work every day to support the family

My parents' commitment and hope for my future motivate me to do something remarkable in life. Now I know that it is my goal to use the opportunities around me to make something of myself and help my parents and my community. When I think about bamboo huts and food ration, I get an internal urge to contribute to the world. Therefore, I dedicate myself to continue my education to be successful because I believe that my education is the key to my family's happiness and world's prosperity.
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Sep 25, 2015   #2
I agree that your essay got blown out of proportion Tika. You don't really need to discuss, in such vivid detail, your life on the camp. Just give an overview of that life leading into the immigration to America. One to three sentences depicting those information. will definitely help to shorten the essay. Let me make a clear suggestion as to which part of your essay I find most effective as an introduction. It is this whole portion:

When we arrived at the United states, my family was my responsibility in certain needs because I was the only that spoke broken English. I explained to my parents the mails we received...

I believe that this will be an excellent part of your opening statement. Revise what you have now to become shorter then offer a larger part of the introduction to your main point, surviving in a new world. Discuss your experience as an immigrant person, not your full on family experience, just concentrate on yourself, in order to depict the context in which you grew up. These are the parts that should comprise your first paragraph.

For your second paragraph, you can discuss how those challenges you faced growing up served as your inspiration to aspire for better things in life or a brighter future. This is the paragraph where you can discuss your family members and their influence on you. What hardships did they face in raising you in the U.S.? Those will be part of the factors that comprise your aspirations. Choose one significant moment for your mother and one for your father. Don't overstate things. Just be straight to the point. You only have 800 words to work with. So edit your thoughts before you type it.

I really do not see any portion in the latter part of your essay that describes your academic successes. You need to work on that. Don't talk about your future plans. It has no bearing on the prompt topic so it will just take up needed words in your count. Avoid discussing anything irrelevant to the prompt.
lcturn87 - / 435 236  
Sep 25, 2015   #3
I would like to give you some feedback. The first paragraph gives the reader insight into your personal situation, but the second and third paragraph shows that you had to resettle many times. You could combine these paragraphs and include only what is most important to your story if you want to shorten your essay. Also, you describe that your relatives had something to teach you. Therefore, you could delete what your uncle and cousin said, because this is a good sentence that describes how it helped prepare you for the journey ahead.

The last sentences indicates it was your last night in the refugee camp. The following day you must have started your journey to the U.S. If you use your last paragraph after this sentence to briefly describe your arrival to the U.S., you could shorten the length of your essay. This could also help you add more details you would like to include. You could describe your specific aspirations and academic successes.
OP tkuikel 1 / 3  
Sep 26, 2015   #4
Thank you very much for the feedback!
I have somewhat rewritten the essay. Can you look over it? Does it answer the question? Thanks

I was born without any goals, responsibilities, or a future.
Or at least, that is what I used to think.

I was born in a refugee camp in Nepal, surrounded by bamboo huts and unsanitary lifestyle. We seldom received food rations, clothes, and bamboos to continue our lives. I felt like we were lost in an oblivion, uncertain, hopeless and unaware of the unknown, unappealing future.

My parents, forced to leave their homeland of Bhutan due to ethnic cleansing, took refuge in unpleasant camps in Nepal with the help of the UNHCR and intended to live a new life and raise my brother and me. Being born in a situation like that, I felt like there was no goal and responsibility for me at all. Although in 2009, a program, International Organization for Migration, decided to resettle our family to the United States. I was delighted and relieved as I was heading toward the land of opportunity and great future. But then the last days in the refugee camp arrived and that frightened me. All of sudden, I realized that I was swarmed with responsibilities. All my relatives had something to teach me, as I was the oldest son, in order to prepare me to take care of my parents and my brother in this journey. My parents were not anymore the ones doing everything for the family, but it was me, who had to carefully bring us and settle down in the other side of the world. Living eleven years in a refugee camp, I was not at all familiar with the language and the culture of the nation toward which we were venturing. The last night in the refugee camp, I was frightened to take the responsibility but more excited to live in a country that promise me a successful future.

Although when I arrived at the United states, my excitement was quickly lost; the "promised land" turned out to be the land of struggle. At home, my parents worked day and night in new, unknown environment but it was still tough to keep up with all the bills. I was dispirited one day when my dad said he wanted to go back to Nepal because there at least he could understand the language. In school, I felt the same as everyone surrounding me spoke English. I was like a goose in the middle of all ducks. Although, I attempted to socialize with others and get help but instead I got bullied. They laughed at the way I spoke and dressed; I was humiliated in every way. In this bitter environment, I suffered both psychologically feeling lost and hopeless, and academically getting Fs in almost all classes. Depressingly, the United States seemed worse than the hopeless refugee camp, where at least it felt like home.

Nonetheless, I comprehended the situation and realized that I couldn't let these problems discourage me in any way but instead empower me to flourish. I was given an opportunity that my parents could not have ever imagined and I could not simply waste it by losing myself in pessimism. I was determined to overcome the language barrier by spending most of my time reading books and using computers in the library, where I was freed me from any worries. I embraced my culture and background without embarrassment and engaged myself to school activities. Thereafter everything seemed simple: I started to make new friends who understood my background and struggle; I got As in all of my classes by 8th grade; I got accepted to one of the best high school in the city; and at home, I could clearly explain to my parents the mails we received and I could finally take my parents to the hospital without the need of an interpreter.

Through these series of ups and downs, I have realized that life is like a rollercoaster, sometimes there is satisfaction and sometimes discontent. But if I have determination, commitment, and rigid goals, there will always be satisfaction. Right now, I have three goals and responsibility: continue my education in college, make my parents proud, and help my community. I am committed and I will work hard to accomplish these goals. Although I am still uncertain and unaware of the future, I know, based on the fact that if I was able to come to an unknown place, settle down and learn English, the future is anything that I want to it be.
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Sep 26, 2015   #5
Save for a number of grammatical issues, this is an excellent revision Tika. You were able to properly answer the prompt in a more concise manner. What you have to do now, before correcting the grammar, is divide the essay into more paragraphs than you have at the moment. Your first paragraph is too long to read. It covers 2 separate events at the camp so each event should have its own paragraph. That will offer a clarity regarding the topic sentence and also allow the reader a chance to rest while reading your paragraphs. Kindly consider which parts of the first paragraph you feel would be the best portions to start a new paragraph at and see if it will help make the essay flow better.

Now, as for the grammar issues, I'll show you the corrected lines below.

to HELP EASE our lives

I felt like we were lost in an oblivion. FACING AN uncertain, hopeless and unaware of the unknown, unappealing future.

intended to live a new life and raise my brother and me IN A NEW, PEACEFUL, AND SAFE COUNTRY.

[]S] Although THEN , in 2009

a program CALLED International

resettle our family IN the United

bring us TO SETTLE settle down

that promiseD me

Although w When I arrived at the United states, my excitement was quickly lost

in AN unknown environment WHICH MADE IT tough to keep up with all the bills

I was like a goose in the middle of all ducks.

Although, I attempted to socialize with others and get help but instead I got bullied.

I suffered both psychologically, feeling lost and hopeless, and academically , getting Fs in almost all classes.

but instead I SHOULD USE IT TO empower me to

myself IN school activities.

the mails MAIL

I have realized that life is like a ROLLER COASTER, sometimes there is satisfaction and sometimes discontent. - The roller coaster reference is normally used to depict life's ups and downs. Use that term instead of satisfaction and discontent.

RESPONSIBILITIES

I have to say, your essay really comes across as much stronger now. You have more conviction in your beliefs that your life experiences have helped you become the person you are today. This shows a much stronger voice than the previous version.
OP tkuikel 1 / 3  
Sep 26, 2015   #6
vangiespen, you are the best! Thank you for the feedback and edits!
Since I have 50 more words remaining, should I elaborate the last paragraph more?
Again, thank you very much!
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Sep 26, 2015   #7
While others would tell you that you should just avoid adding more information to your essay in the last part, since it seems complete enough, I am going to leave that decision to you. My opinion is that, should you choose to use the remaining word count, it should show how much you have grown as a person by explaining how you now have hope and dare to dream more for yourself.

As I review your essay, I noticed that you said you had 3 goals and responsibilities in life. Rather than simply mentioning these goals and responsibilities, expand upon them as the fulfillment of your aspirations in life. For example, how has your desire to complete college shaped your aspirations? How does making your parents proud help you become a better person? How do you see these past struggles and accomplishments give you an idea for a new direction in your future?

Remember, mine is only a suggestion. You can judge better for yourself if you think using the remaining word count will help your essay develop further or if you are comfortable with the content of the essay at the moment. 50 words won't really be much of a help to the essay if you do not think you can come up with the words to enhance your written work. The essay is already usable at this point, whether you want to try to make it better and how to make it better is up to you.
justivy03 - / 2,366 607  
Sep 29, 2015   #8
- ...and unsanitary lifestyleenvironment .
- We seldom received( it's an ongoing action, so you have to use the present tense of the verb )
- ...my brother and meI .
- Being born in athis situation...
- like that, I felt like there was no...
- cover myour body and...
- ...a program called International Organization for Migration,
- ..saw the hardships, my parents were...
- enduring and decided to resettlerescue refugees...
- My parents decided to re settle in the...
- ...were heading towards the land of...
- InOn the other hand,...
- I was indifferent and apathetic;, I didn't...
- ...parents wereare the ones
- ...taking care of me.

As you can see there's quiet a lot of improvement to be done in your essay, but don't fret, it's always a step by step process.

I will get back to you for the next few paragraphs.
OP tkuikel 1 / 3  
Sep 29, 2015   #9
@justivy03 thank you for the edits! But I think you are editing the old version of the essay! If you can, can you edit the revised essay that I have below!

I was born without any goals, responsibilities, or a future.
Or at least, that is what I used to think.

I was born in a refugee camp in Nepal, surrounded by bamboo huts and unsanitary lifestyle. We seldom received food rations, clothes, and bamboos to ease our lives. I felt like we were lost in oblivion, facing an uncertain, hopeless, unknown, and unappealing future. My parents, forced to leave their homeland of Bhutan due to ethnic cleansing, took refuge in unpleasant camps in Nepal with the help of the UNHCR and intended to live a new life and raise my brother and me in new and peaceful country. Being born in a situation like that, I felt like there was no goal and responsibility for me at all.

Then in 2009, a program called International Organization for Migration decided to resettle our family in the United States. I was delighted and relieved as I was heading toward the land of opportunity and great future. But then the last days in the refugee camp arrived and that frightened me. All of sudden, I realized that I was swarmed with responsibilities. All my relatives had something to teach me, as I was the oldest son, in order to prepare me to take care of my parents and my brother in this journey. My parents were not anymore the ones doing everything for the family, but it was me, who had to carefully bring us and settle down in the other side of the world. Living eleven years in a refugee camp, I was not at all familiar with the language and the culture of the nation toward which we were venturing. The last night in the refugee camp, I was frightened to take the responsibility but more excited to live in a country that promised me a successful future.

When I arrived at the United states, my excitement was quickly lost; the "promised land" turned out to be the land of struggle. At home, my parents worked day and night in an unknown environment which made it extremely tough to keep up with all the bills. I was dispirited one day when my dad said he wanted to go back to Nepal because there at least he could understand the language. In school, I felt the same as everyone surrounding me spoke English. I was like a goose in the middle of ducks. I attempted to socialize with others and get help but instead I got bullied. They laughed at the way I spoke and dressed; I was humiliated in every way. In this bitter environment, I suffered both psychologically, feeling lost and hopeless, and academically, getting Fs in almost all classes. Depressingly, the United States seemed worse than the hopeless refugee camp, where at least it felt like home.

Nonetheless, I comprehended the situation and realized that I couldn't let these problems discourage me in any way but instead I should use it to empower me to flourish. I was given an opportunity that my parents could not have ever imagined and I could not simply waste it by losing myself in pessimism. I was determined to overcome the language barrier by spending most of my time reading books and using computers in the library, where I was freed me from any worries. I embraced my culture and background without embarrassment and engaged myself in school activities. Thereafter everything seemed simple: I started to make new friends who understood my background and struggle; I got As in all of my classes by 8th grade; I got accepted to one of the best high school in the city; and at home, I could clearly explain to my parents the mail we received; I could finally take my parents to the hospital without the need of an interpreter; I could also teach my parents English to ease their lives in the new land.

I realized that life is like a rollercoaster, sometimes there is satisfaction and sometimes discontent. But if I have determination, commitment, and rigid goals, there will always be satisfaction. With the inspirations from fluctuating situations in my life, I am committed on excelling to three goals and responsibilities in the future: continue my education in college, make my parents proud, and help my community. Although I am still uncertain and unaware of the future, I know, based on the fact that if I was able to come to an unknown place, settle down and learn English, the future is anything that I want to it be.
justivy03 - / 2,366 607  
Oct 3, 2015   #10
Well Tika, I read through your essay and it felt so good to see that you were able to come up with a much better essay with the help of EF.

Overall, I believe, only the last two paragraphs need a little bit of enhancement, so here it is;

- Nonetheless, I comprehendedunderstand the situation..
- ...to empower me to flourishprosper .
- I was given anam blessed with the opportunity...
- I wasam determined...
- ...where I was freed meam free from any worries.
- ThereafterIn the long run everything seemed simple:.

- But if I havearmed with determination,...
- With theI draw inspirations from...
- fluctuatingchallenging situations in my life,
- I am committed on excelling to threeexceeding goals

There you have it, still a lot going on and it doesn't stop there. A day in our lives is a day of learning and exploration.

Way to go and the best of luck to you!!!


Home / Scholarship / Bamboo huts - QuestBridge (scholarship) Biographical Essay- Need An Insight