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University Scholarship Essay Prompt: Write about a contemporary figure you admire (4000 characters)

KurekoHikari 4 / 8 4  
Aug 22, 2020   #1

The Rock

People's heroes' nicknames are usually very flamboyant: Drake, Lady Gaga, Superman, but mine is a rock, no, he is The Rock.

At the tender age of 14, Dwayne Johnson's entire family was evicted from Hawaii, and as he turned 16, the jail cell has already become his second home, due to multiple arrests. However, if there was one lesson he learned, from a cozy bed to sleeping on the streets on bone-chilling nights: life is not fair unless you make it fair, and the only way to do that: strenuous hard work. Determined to craft a better future for himself and his family, Johnson worked and trained relentlessly, until one day, the door to a career in the NFL started widening.

Yet, a cruel injury robbed him of that future, rendering years of effort meaningless, leaving the young man hopeless, bitterly disappointed and broke while shouldering the burden of being the sole breadwinner for his family. He could have stayed and drowned in that desperate moment, in what people thought of him, an unfortunate victim of fate, but Johnson picked himself up, and entered the ring of pro-wrestling where he would be immortalized in the history book as "The Rock".

Now with money, power and world-wide fame, Dwayne Johnson was once again confronted with the choice: to remain the character labeled to him, a brute wrestler, or undergo another arduous training process to potentially become something more?. Announced as the highest-paid actor in 2020, The Rock provided the perfect answer to that question.

I was never evicted, arrested or made homeless, and yet the desperation of living as a kind of person people took me for, worse off, to actually believe them, is a familiar feeling. Entering 11th grade, my classmates were achieving straight-As in class and participating in numerous extracurricular activities and projects, living their best high school life. Meanwhile, on some mornings my lone aspiration was to fall asleep and never wake up again. I defined myself as the "shy kid", socially awkward, too scared to meet new people and interact.

On a miserable summer morning, a video titled: "The Rock's story" captured my interest. Before that, I only knew him as the "WWE guy" or "Hobbs", the movie star who had it all, but when I witnessed his struggles, his story inspired me unlike any other. There was a quote in the video that I have ingrained forever into my mind, what he said when his football dream disintegrated before his eyes:

"Had 7 dollars in my pocket, I knew two things, I was broke as hell, and one day I won't be"

Those words shook me to the core. How could a person, at his lowest point in life, make such an awe-inspiring statement with absolute confidence? How could he believe? It was not only a belief, it was cold affirmation, as in his own words: "I was going to outwork everyone in the room"

After 15 minutes of almost gluing my eyes to the screen, I sank back into the chair, pondering about his story, subtly feeling the massive upcoming change in my life, not because it happened to me, but because I wielded it. I took the first steps, chatting with my friends at class more, asking strangers on the street for directions, and watching self-help videos.

It was a grueling process, panic attacks and anxieties thwarted me at every turn, the sickening feeling of possible rejections haunted me. There were often times where I betrayed myself and backed down, but I always crawled back, gradually getting comfortable with the discomfort. Though shackled with internal struggles, I have never felt more free, for once in my life, I had full control over my identity.

I actively sought for projects to volunteer in, desiring a chance to hone my skills and pushing my social limits. Determined to change the names people called me, I burst through my own safe bubble, joining clubs, projects, and school activities. I was a content writer, event planner, designer and perhaps most importantly, a more confident person. The accumulation of experience broadened my horizons, attaining crucial skills and meeting amazing like-minded individuals, creating bonds all the while working together to contribute to the community. I am no longer the shy kid, I am now my own man

Many speculate about the name's origin, but to me, "The Rock" embodies the unshakable, unfaltering, rock-solid determination that one can become the person they strive to be so long as they put in the work. Reflecting, I take pride in knowing that I chose to act in that moment, willingly pushing myself out of the shell to become who I was meant to be, instead of sticking with the label other people put on me. Though still a long way from catching up to my fellow peers, there is one promise I could always make: I will outwork everyone in the room.
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 14,662 4753  
Aug 22, 2020   #2
Does the character count include spaces or not? If it includes spaces, you need to cut this down by 760 words. What words or sentences to cut will be up to you. If it doesn't include spaces, then you still have 69 characters to use. Again, the editing of the content is up to you. I will only review the relevance, impressiveness, and possible improvements of your content.

Be aware of the timeline in your presentation. The first half of your essay speaks of the past of The Rock. So use the past form of reference words in that section. Simple errors like that really affect the clarity of the presentation and shows the reviewer whether you actually took the time to review the paper or not. Perfect your grammar at every turn.

There isn't enough of a parallelism between you and The Rock for the reviewer to be moved by the essay. The parallelism is important because it shows a strong influence of the contemporary figure upon the development of your character or sense of maturity as a person. It would serve your essay well if you could pick out a clear series of relatable points between the two of you that would help illustrate the kind of influence his story exerted on your personal development.

Open with your story first. Then go into the story of Dwayne Johnson. Find out how similar you are to Dwayne instead of The Rock. Look at the person for the things you admire. The Rock is the image. Dwayne Johnson is the human being behind the image. It is Dwayne you should be influenced by. The Rock, should only be the starting, not the focal point of your presentation.

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