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At age seven, my world became one I feared; Stanford Supp/Intellectual Vitality

potterygenius94 2 / 5 1  
Dec 19, 2012   #1
This is a Stanford Supplemental Essay with the prompt:
"Stanford students have an intellectual vitality. Reflect on an experience that has been important to your intellectual development"
I would appreciate anybody's help so much! I honestly don't even know if it's a good essay or if there are any specific changes I should make...Help please!

At age seven, my world became one I feared. My world was a stage-a platform that offered no separation, no protection from the judging eyes of an audience. I was alone with nobody and nothing to rely on except the small, carefully crafted piece of wood I held in my hands. Fear took over my body as my knees shook and my hands quivered. The world of violin required me to perform, and I didn't know if my love for music was worth the anguish of performing.

I accidentally "landed" in the world of violin at age seven when my sister and I began casually playing with a children's beginning group. It was meant to be a fun pastime, but turned into something more serious when a teacher identified my potential and I switched instructors to develop my skills. I loved the music, and immersed myself in the classical art form. Over the years, not only did I master the lessons, but I also played countless hours at home, at the studio, at charity events, and with international students. I grew passionate about something completely unexpected.

But my shy personality still stood as an obstacle. I naturally prefer to stay within my comfort zone. Even since my first year in elementary school, I chose my words carefully, I remained cautious about who my friends were, and I never called attention to myself. "Outgoing" was something that was completely unattainable, and at a young age I accepted that. That is why, as the pieces I had to perform grew to be more and more difficult, I dreaded the semiannual studio recitals. I dreaded performance classes at camps and especially any competition in which I was involved. However, these aspects of the violin world are inevitably coupled with the joy of playing. And, at age seven, this was the world I chose, with the decision to compromise my own fears in order to further develop a passion.

What I realize now, is that forcing myself out of my comfort zone has made me more willing to take advantage of opportunities-within the world of violin as well as in past and future endeavors. I can achieve more because I am willing to reach farther. Being outgoing is still far from one of my strengths, but I am capable of overcoming the weakness that could be holding me back. My aspirations will not be limited by fear. I stand on a stage with eyes judging everything I do, but my fear does not control success anymore. Yes, I still am cautious. Yes, I still get overwhelmingly nervous in unfamiliar situations. But no, I will not let my fear inhibit my future.
xxxrays 1 / 7 2  
Dec 19, 2012   #2
Wow, this was impressive!

The only things:

"What I realize now, is that forcing myself.." no comma!

Also, I would add at the end something like knowing you're good enough to not be afraid. I think saying you've overcome the problem would be more what they're looking for, even if you haven't overcome it completely, so I would elaborate on how you are getting better at that.

But otherwise, this is very well written.

Maybe you can help me with mine? :)

Good luck!
OP potterygenius94 2 / 5 1  
Dec 19, 2012   #3
Thanks! I'll definitely work with your suggestions:)
nairbear68 6 / 29 6  
Dec 19, 2012   #4
I heard most people write about social issues for this essay, but I think you've chosen a much better topic.
What makes your essay really good is that you apply what you've learned from this experience to other parts of your life.
Just a little note, the common app does not like long dashes, they come out as weird symbols once you enter the text into the box and then preview as a pdf

please take a look at mine if you have time!
OP potterygenius94 2 / 5 1  
Dec 21, 2012   #5
Thanks! Anything else you would fix or change to make it better??
alecblumenfeld 5 / 9 1  
Dec 22, 2012   #7
I like it, anything i would change would be style related. You might want to loop back though to your opening stament and say that though you feel like you are on this stage and once feared it the last 17 years have provide you with the tools to coupe and succede.

just my opinion
jaxball 4 / 10 1  
Dec 22, 2012   #8
inhibit my future

impede my future maybe? just saying aha
college134nj - / 44 7  
Dec 22, 2012   #9
this is really unique and deep. super super well written. i wish we could tape this up as a model essay for future stanford applicants... it literally blew me away. i think you can get in... :)

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