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Common App Essay: Scuba Diving, 80 feet underwater.


ncurcio6 1 / -  
Jul 7, 2014   #1
This is a supppperrrr rough draft; the essay is only 340 words, but I believe it has great potential. This essay will address the "favorite place" prompt: The depths of the ocean.

It's funny: 80 feet underwater, I feel as though I am on top of the world.

Humanity's instinct is to constantly push its existing barriers. We reach deeper into our universe and further into ourselves to unlock the secrets unbeknownst to man. My source of exploration and introspection is an 80 cubic centimeter scuba tank filled with compressed air. I feel most content submerged somewhere humans were never intended to go: underwater. By exploring the depths of the ocean, I unveil insight into who I am.

Some say that perspective is everything. I can attest to this. To observe nautical nature in its most virgin state, to be one with your surroundings, and to hear that deafening silence of the deep sea truly changed the way I viewed life. Somehow, when I opened my eyes and my mind to the larger ecosystem that I was a part of, that argument with my girlfriend and that poor test grade didn't matter that much anymore. Priorities are easier to realize when all that separates you from life and death is a rubber tube.

This effect of increased mental clarity and introspection varies directly with the conditions of the dive. The best dive I've ever had took place in Grand Cayman; the visibility was over 100 feet and the reefs were teaming with exotic wildlife. Coming from the murky, gelid Northeast, this was quite an eye-opening experience. As my body descended to the sea-floor, my mind ascended to new levels of thought and emotion I had never felt before. I made friends with an eel, I played tag with a school of angelfish, I found Nemo, and I had never been happier in my natural ecosystem: the ocean.

Scuba diving is humanity in a nutshell: it takes the preconceived notions of possibility and disregards them in favor of innovation. This practice of external exploration provides an alternative worldview that requires one to look deeper within themselves. When I see my depth gauge reading 80 feet, and look out and see acres of water teeming with wildlife, I am truly at peace.
Popcornasaur 2 / 5 3  
Jul 8, 2014   #2
First, I'd like to say that this is a very well written essay; I won't be able to correct grammar or syntax issues. However, there are a few things that I think you can change.

"By exploring the depths of the ocean, I unveil insight into who I am." - I think that you can change the wording of this sentence, maybe something like "... depths of the ocean, I explore the depth of my mind. " or similar to further play on the whole ocean/diving theme.

"...that argument with my girlfriend and that poor test grade didn't matter that much anymore." - This seems a bit negative. You want to present the best side of yourself to the admissions officers. Maybe you can say "... the trivialities of life seem to wash away like the images on sand." (Again, going along with the whole ocean theme)

"I made friends with an eel, I played tag with a school of angelfish, I found Nemo, and I had never been happier in my natural ecosystem: the ocean." - Love this line. It's very playful!

It's a very well written essay. I wish you the best of luck.


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