Considering both the specific undergraduate school or program to which you are applying and the broader University of Pennsylvania community, what academic, research, and/or extracurricular paths do you see yourself exploring at Penn? (500 words)
It's early Thursday morning, and my alarm clock shrilly beeps, jerking me awake. Groaning, I force myself out of warm sheets to grab a snack and trudge down to the Linguistics Lab for my first class of the day. Even though I dislike getting up this early, the perfect opportunities that Penn provides for me and my budding interests are definitely worth it. I still can't believe that I have the chance to take a course with Professor William Labov, the frontrunner in the introduction of sociolinguistics to America. Ever since I first took a summer course on Etymologies, I've been captivated by how language, culture, and history come together to create a global linguistic phenomenon.
After class, I find myself caught up in a debate about the merits of linguistic anthropology with several of my fellow students, and it is only until my stomach grumbles in protest that I remember it's time for lunch. During lunch I bump into some friends that I work with for the West Philadelphia Tutoring Project. My experiences in high school with volunteering at a homework club showed me how enjoyable helping others can be, and I wanted to find an activity in college that would allow me to further my sense of civic responsibility. A couple hours a week is a small price to pay to spread a wealth of knowledge and opportunity among the underprivileged.
My roommate texts me to remind me of rehearsal for the Penn Symphony Orchestra tonight, so I meet up with her and we head off to the Irvine Auditorium. Although I don't intend on pursuing a degree in music, it's been a huge part of my identity for more than half of my life. So, when I discovered that Penn offers music opportunities like ensembles, classes, and lessons to nonmusic majors, I was thrilled at the chance to further my musical talents as I explore my academic self as well.
As the day winds down, I remember a time when mention of the University of Pennsylvania only invoked memories of high rise dormitories, the Button, and New Deck Tavern's fantastic burgers, things that defined my family's visits to see my brother as undergraduate here. There's a picture propped up on my desk of my brother in his commencement gown and I, a tiny beaming sixth grader, leaning against the Love Statue; I can only imagine the paths that I will take to lead me to my own graduation from a school that has prepared me for a brighter future.
This is a good essay! I can't find much wrong with it. But I feel like you have a inkling of a boastful tone, so be careful.
A couple hours a week is a small price to pay to spread a wealth of knowledge and opportunity among the underprivileged.
I don't particularly like this line. I feel you sound a little cocky, even though I know you aren't trying to. Maybe something like "It feels amazing spreading a wealth of knowledge and opportunity among the unprivileged."
Wonderful essay! I like the specific details you included.