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Best Education alone isn't enough to create good citizens; Bowdoin- Common Good


MBLTheNumbaOne 4 / 8  
Dec 26, 2013   #1
In an effort to understand your interests and aspirations for college, we ask you to select one of the three topics below and provide a response of up to 250 words.

Bowdoin students and alumni often cite world-class faculty and opportunities for intellectual engagement, the College's commitment to the Common Good, and the special quality of life on the coast of Maine as important aspects of the Bowdoin experience.

Reflecting on your own interests and experiences, please comment on one of the following:

1. Intellectual engagement
2. The Common Good
3. Connection to place
In Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith postulated that aggregate actions of rational individual governed by self-interest in competitive environment generate the societal common good with minimal government intervention; although few exceptions apply. However, pouring evidences from old and recent researches from behavioral economics and psychology suggest occasions of the failure are far more frequent than Smith himself envisioned.

Although Charles Darwin might have not envisioned his revolutionary text of On the Origin of Species applicable in the context of politics, its implication is profound. Darwin argued, unlike Smith, that acts to promote oneself often leads to non-optimal results for the whole group. For instance, it is of great advantage to individual bull elks to have larger antler than its rivals to reproduce/mate, and this gene for bigger antler gets passed down to generation after generation. However, bigger antler poses serious threat to the elks, for they make the bulls easy preys. In a post steroid ban survey, professional athletics were asked whether steroid should be banned. They anonymously favored the ban; however many players indicated that they would consider using steroid to gain extra edge over their opponents, risking their long-term health.

Similarly many students would consider cheating on exams and assignments for a better grade, and some people will take unlawful and unjust advantage at the expense of others without morality and punishments associated with such actions. This human nature of greed leads to collective action problem in almost every aspect of life. Although I believe the world is filled with mostly kindhearted people, that fact alone cannot guarantee good outcome. Because Self-interest often conflicts with the common good, it is virtually impossible to achieve it without strong morality and rules set forth by culture or government.

As a candidate to the nation's elite colleges, I believe even the best education would not be sufficient to guarantee its students to be good citizens. College is a place where students learn to work within the boundaries and exercise critical thinking to challenge inequitable ideas to become contributing members to society.

I am not confident if I am on right track, and the essay is already over the word limit by about 100 words, but I appreciate any inputs.

Thanks and happy holidays.
iloveyogurt 9 / 17 5  
Dec 26, 2013   #2
Hi,

I maybe completely wrong/unhelpful, but I don't know what you are trying to/have expressed about yourself in this essay. Yes I get a good sense that you are well-versed and thoughtful, but there is little connection to your interests, experiences or aspirations that can define who you are...

Are you rushing into the essay too much? Take a deep breath and take a walk outside; let yourself be inspired about the prompts.

PS: the use of grammar is pretty good with only minor mistakes
OP MBLTheNumbaOne 4 / 8  
Dec 27, 2013   #3
Thanks for your input, I just wanted to be little different from everyone else, for almost none of them wrote about something intellectual(although I don't know if that's something I should do)


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