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'Aunt's cancer..' - Concise Narrative: Entrance Essay for UF


amramey 1 / 1  
Nov 3, 2009   #1
I would appreciate any feedback on my essay. I am not very good at writing essays so any help is appreciated. Thanks.

Please write a concise narrative in which you describe a meaningful event, experience or accomplishment in your life and how it will affect your college experience or your contribution to the UF campus community. You may want to reflect on your ideas about student responsibility, academic integrity, campus citizenship or a call to service.

Tears ran out of my eyes and down my cheeks as my aunt told us that her cancer had came back again. This time it was worse because it was stage four colon cancer. This is the third time she has had this cancer in four years. We have watched her go through the many weeks of chemotherapy and radiation and we have prayed for her, but nothing had prepared us for when she said it had come back. She is always happy and upbeat when I see her, she has been very strong and not letting this get her down. Her daughter and her family are her driving forces. I think it takes a very strong woman to go through two remissions and now another round of chemotherapy. She still sees this just as something that god has put in front of her to let her surpass and continue with her journey. I continue to tell myself to stop taking things for granted. I look at each and every day in a new light. I see that everything happens for a reason and that we should see every challenge as just a tiny bump in the road on our long journey ahead. My aunt has taught me that when you face a big challenge, such as stage four colon cancer, you just have to take it and smile. God won't put anything in front of you that you can't handle.

This experience has affected my life in many ways. I think that this has helped me become the person that I have always wanted to become. I don't take things for granted anymore. I look at everything with the intention to exceed in all I do. It has caused me to excel in school and take every challenge, put in front of me, with a smile just like my aunt. I look to the future with the happiness hoping that one day I can influence someone as much as my aunt influences me. I think that this is a great opportunity to better myself for the future and the long road ahead of me. There will be many challenges but I know that in the end everything will be just as I hoped. My aunt will always be the main person that has changed my outlook on life and how I live it. Remember that the journey ahead is a long one, but one that shouldn't be taken lightly and that you will surpass and look back as just a tiny bump.
Vulpix - / 71  
Nov 3, 2009   #2
I am rather confused about your verb tenses: "tears ran out" of your eyes, but "this is the third time" your aunt had cancer. Are you describing an event in the past, or are you placing yourself inside the experience? Please clarify this for consistency. The general timeline of your description could also be clarified- is this something that has taken place recently? How recently? You describe your aunt in the present tense ("she is"), and yet you say the experience "affected" your life in the past tense.

"She is always happy and upbeat when I see her, she has been very strong and not letting this get her down."
First of all, the first and second parts of this sentence are both independent clauses, meaning they need to be joined with a conjuction ("[...] when I see her, and she [...]"). Also, the second part of your sentence needs to be changed to "she has been very strong and has not let the experience get her down", in order to maintain parallel verb structures.

"She still sees this just as something that god has put in front of her to let her surpass and continue with her journey."

In this context, "god" should be capitalized. Your use of the word "surpass" is also rather dubious. I would change it to "overcome", as in a challenge to be overcome.

"Remember that the journey ahead is a long one, but one that shouldn't be taken lightly and that you will surpass and look back as just a tiny bump."

This sentence does not make very much sense to me in the way it is structured. I think I know what you are trying to say, but perhaps try rephrasing. Something like "Although the journey ahead is long, I know that when I look back the challenges I have surpassed will only seem like a small bump in the road" would be clearer.

Overall, I feel like your story is engaging and clearly inspirational. However, I feel like you need to rework some sentences for grammar and clarity, and you could also think of adding more specific examples- everything right now is mostly abstract.
OP amramey 1 / 1  
Nov 4, 2009   #3
Thanks so much! That really helped me a lot! I appreciate it!


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