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"Across the Bridge" Prompt 1 Central ID Story - Common APP essay

Martinez 1 / -  
Oct 29, 2014   #1
Hello this is my common app essay. I would really enjoy it if I could get some feed back on it. I am looking for grammar errors, the flow of it and well how well I executed it. I know that a simple unique essay is better than an over dramatized earth shattering essay. I have gone through some rather difficult situations in my life but I want college to see that these situation made me stronger---I do not want to sound whinny. So that is my biggest worry is if it is a bit too dramatized.

P.S yes, 73 that is accurate.

My bicycle's brakes squeal as I come to a stop. 6:30 am. Eyes burning. Book bag cramped. Shoulders aching. My daily four mile journey to school is stumped every day by one obstacle: a bridge arching uphill. With one deep breath, my body braces for the climb once more.

After 73 different schools, in 40 states, my migrant family decided to try stability for a change. Being economically disadvantaged, my single parent mother raised her four kids on the road, from migrant camp to migrant camp,scouting the entire country for work. Finally before my freshman year of high school my family bought a small place in the heart of a run down ethnic ghetto. It wasn't the white picket fence house we've dreamed of but it was ours. During that year at my local High School I ranked number one in my class--but at the cost of going every day through metal detectors, fights at lunch, and poorly trained teachers. I decided that though the title of Valedictorian would be an honor, it meant nothing if I had not actually learned. Being prepared fully for College was what I had in mind when I submitted my school of choice form to St. Joseph High School. Having no reliable transportation for my new school, however, I found my self biking, rain or shine, for the next two years for my education.

Swerving around potholes littered on the street, I pass boarded up buildings stained with graffiti. I am peddling my self out of poverty. In my community there are two twin cities, one where I live and the other where I study, separated by a river, race, and economic standards. Only a small drawbridge connects the two. Across this bridge baroque houses nestle themselves in front of Lake Michigan; there are not cracked sidewalks and the noise of police sirens is quieter. Across the bridge I went every day on my bike because I knew the education served there was my ticket to prosperity.

Yet to get to the other side the steepness of the bridge going hill must be overcome.

My front wheel slowly gaining momentum as I creep up to the slope. With a steady rhythm, I scale my challenge. My mind is only concentrated on one thing: reaching the top. Halfway there, when gravity tries to force me back, I ignite the engine within to powerhouse my way upwards. The lactic acid in my hamstrings burns with every inch to my goal. Air becomes harder to gulp. Blood rushes to fill my face. Drops of sweat condensate on my forehead. My physical body yearns for a stop but that is just not an option.

Just walk the rest way up. A little voice, that voice, whispers inside.
There is no way you can make.

"Almost there."
A puff of carbon dioxide escapes my lungs. In those few seconds, when the last of strength is depleted, an army of different voices of doubt from the past attack.

Ew what are you wearing. It has Goodwill written all over.

Its a rule Mr. Martinez. No health insurance mean no soccer tryout.

College is just not very realistic for, well um, your kind.

English. Why can't you and your people learn it?

Look at yourself, all you will ever be is an alcoholic
like your father.


A 150 heat beat. I've done. It over. I am on the top.

vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Oct 29, 2014   #2
Jesus, this is admirable essay. However, I believe that you need to develop the voices that you hear in your head as you pedal your way to school. Use one voice for every part of the journey over the uphill bridge. Present the stereotype and show us how you overcame it. Towards the end, as you get over the final obstacle, explain how you plan to use college as your stepping stone away from poverty and the life that society seems to want to doom you to. By doing so, you will be able to successfully present your identity and how you plan to continue to develop it as a person while you attend college. If you can try to write the essay from this point of view, I may be able to help you polish it to better fit and align with the prompt. I hope you consider it. It is not overly dramatic in form and will allow you to present various facets of your struggle to find your own identity in the process.

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