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Emmanuel "a person who has had a significant influence on you"-CommonApp


loveyelledno 5 / 16  
Dec 17, 2009   #1
Indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.

" I have never been especially impressed by the heroics of people convinced they are about to change the world. I am more awed by those who struggle to make one small difference."- Ellen Goodman

"NO RUNNING! THIS IS A LIBRARY!" bellowed a librarian, her fists in the air and feet stomping on the marble tiled floors. Days like these were typical at the Queens Library. One would worry if it went on without one troublemaker testing the tempers of employees. Still, I often continued my daily errand hoping to be spared of their antics, the wheels of my cart squeaking as I pushed it down aisles. Most days I felt the routinism of working at a library would never end. At times I shelved and, while no one else watched, hid behind aisles to read novels labeled as "returns". Never did it occur to me that I would soon be leaving the silence of the adult section for somewhere far more interesting---and loud.

The children's section was more like an unconventional nursery rather than a quiet place to read. The children congregated around the computers, teased their neighbors, and often picked their noses once or twice. At the time my position certainly seemed less than endearing; after all, insect and dinosaur picture books had replaced Shakespeare and Austen. One boy however caught my immediate attention, he was certainly different from the rest.

The boy was fairly dark skinned, his head shaved, and his clothes seemed like they might have been purchased at a modern African market. He was enveloped by stacks of books, his eyes focused on the pages, and his lips moving without sound. I often peered up from my copy of Deathly Hallows just to catch glimpses of the boy who read furiously---or so I believed.

The day Emmanuel finally approached me was the day I finally uncovered the mystery---uncertainty. "What is this word?" he had asked. I was surprised and impressed by the candidness of his question. Naturally I could not help but oblige to his curiosity. It was then that the one word turned into a sentence, a paragraph, a page, until finally an entire book. I had my work cut out for me.

From then on I arrived at the library extra early, making sure to do as much shelving as I could. Reading for my own pleasure would have to be put on hold. The Phonics section would often be my first stop. Carefully I would choose the day's newest vowel or phrase, making sure they were appropriate for our lesson. Emmanuel was a frequent visitor, and while I still had a job to do I was happy to devote my lunch breaks entirely to him. Reading lit Emmanuel up, he was immersed. I loved that.

Gradually the student himself became the teacher. Quickly the benefits of my fondness for literature became apparent. Emmanuel's inability to read had shown me that I could help someone, and by doing so spread an interest in reading. The boundaries of Social Darwinism were being broken for me. Rather, the relationship between equity and community became clearer. I had the capability of using my interests and sharing them with others. Inspiring others.

Although I helped to reinforce Emmanuel's reading abilities, he had unknowingly done something for me. Emmanuel had reinforced my ability to communicate. Communication is an art that is vital to our society, and without a voice, one remains the needle in the haystack. It was that summer that Emmanuel allowed me to witness how easily my voice can be heard through another. How easily one's interest in something as simple as books can influence and lead someone to an eventual passion of their own, as he had done for me.

As my time at the library drew closer to an end, I could not help see part of myself within Emmanuel. He was a boy who loved to learn. A boy that was captivated in his own small world when he read. A boy with an unwavering curiosity. I soon came to realize that I was capable of doing much more than remaining an introverted bookworm. I had come to terms with the fact that passion was not something bestowed upon the "lucky ones" or those "born" with it. One's own passion can be found in the most unusual of places, and within the youngest of individuals.
Jeannie 10 / 214  
Dec 18, 2009   #2
This is good! Just a few minor things left to neaten up, I think.

One would worry if it went ona day went by without one a troublemaker or two testing the tempers of employeesan employee's temper .

The use of first person (One) got confusing when you used "one" again, as a number this time, within the same short sentence...

hoping to be spared of their antics,

It is unclear to me whether "their" is the running kids or the librarian...

'Their' as Librarians - "hoping to steer clear of their wrath"
'Their' as the misbehaving kids - "hoping to be spared their antics"

pushed it down aisles

down the aisles.

Most days, I felt the routine dullness(??)ism of working at a library would never end.

You may want to consider striking this entire sentence and using the idea later...it really doesn't add much at this juncture.

At times I shelved and, while no one else watched, hid behind aisles to read novels labeled as "returns". Never did it occur to me that I would soon be leaving the silence of the adult section for somewhere far more interesting---and loud.

When no one was watching, I would put aside my work and hide behind the aisles to read the novels labeled "returns." I had become comfortable in my routine. It never occurred to me that...

"The children's section was more like an unconventional nursery rather than a quiet place to read. The children congregated around the computers, teased their neighbors, and often even picked their noses once or twiceon occasion, displaying a keen aptitude for multi-tasking. <sorry, the visual you provided was so funny, I felt compelled to add to it :) At the time, my position certainly seemed less than endearing; after all, insect and dinosaur picture books had replaced Shakespeare and Austen. But one boy caught my immediate attention, he was certainly different from the rest.

This part is charming. Hope this helps! Be back in a bit.

Blue skies!

Jeannie


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