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Cornell College of Arts and Sciences supplement (intellectual interests)

surfsandiego 3 / 14  
Dec 23, 2008   #1
Describe your intellectual interests, their evolution, and what makes them exciting to you. Tell us how you will utilize the academic programs in the College of Arts and Sciences to further explore your interests, intended major, or field of study.

On a typical Sunday morning, I can be found pouring over my favorite publications: The New York Times and London's Financial Times. It is fulfilling to grasp the depth of a subject in the articles, such as the perils in the Congo or the rising trend of overseas American lawyers and it can take me hours to fully absorb the bulk of information presented. Nonetheless, I always save the Times's Week in Review section for last, delving into Thomas Friedman's latest column and the array of intelligent, exciting op-eds.

Recently, I have noticed and read a spate of articles and opinions on China. Whether it is the impressive modernization seen during the Beijing Olympics or the country's increasing role in international politics, China is gaining attention as a new world power. While reading the Times one Sunday, I was surprised to find Thomas Friedman's column centered directly on China, the country's role in the current financial crisis and how its relationship with the U.S. will change dramatically in the coming future. As a Chinese-American, I wish to seek exactly how the China-U.S. relationship will change and how the U.S. will respond in public policy and diplomacy to China's new status. Having visited China six times in a span of ten years, I have seen first hand the flower-like blossom of China but also the rural, country-like atmosphere of less developed areas. I want to understand the cost that China's growth in its highly modernized cities has on the rest of the country. And having grown passionate about journalism, I still I have questions regarding China's wide censorship of the media.

I believe there is no better place to study China and its relationship with the United States than Cornell University. Through its China and Asia-Pacific Studies (CAPS) program, I would be able to take advantage of stellar professors, like Professor Chen Jian of the Cornell History Department and founder of the CAPS program, who bring a deep understanding of China. Moreover, I admire the fact that Cornell allows its CAPS students to learn practically as well as theoretically. With programs focused in Washington D.C. and Peking University in Beijing, I would be able to take in direct perspectives of U.S.-China relations. In addition, I consider myself a curious individual. With the broad liberal arts education that the College of Arts and Science provides, I would also be able to take courses in a number of intriguing subject areas from art history to political science. In truth, my goal is to one day become a journalist covering China affairs. I firmly believe that Cornell is the best place for that goal.

Any insight or bad grammar finds would be helpful. Thanks!
EF_Sean 6 / 3,491  
Dec 23, 2008   #2
Great essay. It's always nice to read one written in a smooth style. I can only suggest the following minor fixes:

"It is fulfilling to explore in depth the subjects of the articles . . ."

"I was surprised to find Thomas Friedman's column centered directly on China," If you had noticed a rise in the number of articles written on China, why would you be surprised to find Friedman following suit?

"the rural, country-like atmosphere of less developed areas" This really isn't negative enough to warrant a contrast with the "flower-like blossom" you mentioned earlier. "the dire poverty of neglected rural areas," or some such, would be better.

"I firmly believe that Cornell is the best place for me to pursue that goal.
OP surfsandiego 3 / 14  
Dec 23, 2008   #3
Thanks for your helpful suggestions. Anyone else?

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