Hey everyone, I'm looking for feedback on my CommonApp transfer essay. Any corrections/comments you have would be greatly appreciated.
Please provide a statement (250 words minimum) that addresses your reasons for transferring and the objectives you hope to achieve.
When I was initially applying to colleges, I wasn't really sure what I was looking for. I'm the first person in my family to be going to college in the United States. My parents couldn't offer much help, and besides from a couple of areas of interest, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do. Math always fascinated me; learning more about how the entire world is structured and metered by numbers was something I wanted to do. One of my favorite classes in high school was AP Statistics, purely because of the real life applications it offered. In hindsight, I was lax about the entire application process not because I was lazy, but because I lacked a clear focus on what I intended to receive from my college experience.
After a series of acceptances, rejections and waitlists, I ended up enrolling at [school] in their chemical engineering program. I didn't know much about the school except that it was very big, and plenty of my friends and classmates were going there. Engineering seemed like a good degree to pick, since it combined mathematics with the methodical processes only hard science could provide. The college application process was behind me, and I was ready for the fall semester of my freshman year.
I came this fall to [school] and immediately loved the campus. It was easy to make new friends, and the pre-engineering classes I took were challenging and engaging. It was college, exactly as I'd pictured it would be. It was during my first meeting with my advisor when the feeling of uneasiness slowly came over me. Looking over the classes I would take in the next couple of years, something just didn't feel right. That uneasy feeling only got worse after I did more research and talked to the faculty. Chemical engineering was not what I made it out to be. Sure, thermodynamics, heat transfer and quantum chemistry are interesting enough, but the scope to which mathematics was being applied in such an area was not exactly something I wanted to pursue.
A little while before, I had met someone who was headed next year to graduate school in operations research. Having never heard of this before, I did some research. The more I read and discovered, the more I wanted to know. To a student whose extent of mathematical knowledge extended to the path of falling objects or the trigonometry of the unit circle (and other related virtually useless areas), the decision science involved in operations research was remarkable. What other science can solve many real-life socioeconomical problems using the elegant implements only mathematics can offer? Who knew that Osama Bin Laden and many other terrorists were found using Bayesian search theories and analysis? Or that the financial crisis of the late 2000's was predicted by many economists using data mining, statistics and management science? I found myself staying up late at night, reading research journals detailing the use of statistical analysis to game theory models in management and decision processes. Looking up and attending lectures given by university economics and business professors became a part of my weekly schedule. Career opportunities in this field lie both in the industrial setting, as well as public policy - an avenue where my love for research can design and define important issue. As I learned more and more about this concentration, I knew this was a perfect fit. Operations research combined my passion for math with analysis from economics, computer science, and other social sciences.
I have come a long way in just a year. Acclimating to the new college experience took a little getting used to, and balancing academics and my social life was no easy task. My time here has allowed me to develop immensely in only a few months, and has given me the enthusiasm and readiness to pursue my genuine passions. This, combined with my newfound vision, has made me look outside of [school], as this program is not offered as a major here. Studying operations research in a university that has dedicated professors, classes and resources specifically for that concentration would facilitate the perfect environment where I could flourish, pursuing my true passion.