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Personal Biographical Essay - "my mind had no limits"

pumita95 1 / -  
Sep 25, 2012   #1
I was hoping if anyone could give me feedback on my personal statement. Please be honest and let me know on what areas to improve or to leave out and if I have any grammatical errors. greatly appreciate it. Here is the prompt.

"We are interested in learning more about you and the context in which you have grown up, formed your aspirations and accomplished your academic successes. Please describe the factors and challenges that have most shaped your personal life and aspirations. How have these factors caused you to grow?"

I remember as a young child, my mind had no limits. If I wanted I could be an explorer, riding on the back of a T-Rex through dense forests in unknown lands. I could have been an architect and designed buildings that defied physics and brought thrill to others. Nothing was impossible for my mind; whatever I wanted I would accomplish and nothing could stop me. My parents would, in the beginning, encourage me to dream big and aim high, but that all changed as I matured. Both my parents started to doubt my career goals, especially my father. I told him I wanted to be a paleontologist; he said digging up dirt wasn't a real job. I told him I wanted to be a musician; he said to "face reality and find a real job." Even when I told him that I wanted to be an engineer he said that those types of jobs were not for people like "us", people from a Hispanic and low income background. Eventually I, subconsciously, starting setting limitations for myself not only because of my parents, but also due to the environment I was living in.

My community consisted of immigrant families that didn't believe they could ever amount to something better. Kids in the community would talk about how they wanted to work at McDonalds or with their fathers or mothers. They just limited themselves domestically, and never thought that they would ever leave the area. I would see this every time I went to school. They wouldn't pay attention or even care because they had already set their minds that they were never going to leave the city. Even my own friends starting feeling this way and eventually it rubbed off on me. I thought that I should just focus on staying in Los Angeles, finding a school to study here and eventually finding work here. I no longer thought that I could achieve better things for myself; I started setting limits to what I could and could not do.

However, once I entered high school in tenth grade, it was like my mind was set free. I started reading novels about traveling, I learned about people who revolutionized the world, and I met teachers that encouraged me to aim high again. I gained more knowledge and each class played a part in freeing my mind from the shackles I had placed on it. No class though played a bigger role than my advanced history class. There, I learned about astounding figures that rose from the dirt and made success stories for themselves. I learned about technology that at point in time was deemed impossible and could never be achieved. I learned about visionaries that were called crazy and lunatics for ever thinking of ridiculous things. Most importantly, I learned about great figures that started nations that fought against tyranny that brought justice to people, that came from backgrounds similar to mine, that revolutionized the way we live and the way we see the world now. Those people faced great challenges and obstacles, probably so great it would have brought ordinary people down. But they didn't let these factors stop them. They set their minds to accomplishing theirs goals and getting what they want. Afterwards, my mind was processing all the different things, all the possibilities that I could accomplish to cement my own legacy. My mind for the first time in a, long time, had no limits once more.

Recently, I have told my dad that I want to attend school outside of the city and possibly outside the state. After hearing this, he immediately started lecturing about how I don't need college and I should focus on getting a steady job and helping out the family. Now my dad comes from a family where tradition is very important. He started working at an early age of thirteen in order to pay for his school supplies and help support the family. His father before him also had to work at an early age, harvesting crops and herding livestock since his father was dead. I figured my father just wanted me to carry on the tradition, but I would not let him limit my options. Eventually discussing led to arguing which then led to yelling and then it led to him kicking me out. It disappoints me that my father can't see things from my point of view but I am not going to limit myself again. If the great innovators before me had limited their minds then they would have never revolutionized the world and gone down in the history books. I plan on letting my mind soar on the endless possibilities I can accomplish, and hopefully my dad sets his mind free and accepts me once again.

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