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If my father hadn't won a lottery for a visa to the USA then my life would be terribly different


jjjjjjaneyyyy 1 / 1  
Jan 14, 2015   #1
Our motto is Ut Prosim. Comment (Virginia Tech 250 words personal statement)

If my father hadn't won a lottery for a visa to the United States thirty years ago, then my life would be terribly different. I wouldn't have had the fortune of living in one of the wealthiest areas or the opportunity to attend school in one of the best school systems in the United States. Growing up in Fairfax County had definitely skewed my perception of privilege.

I never realized how fortunate I was until the summer of 2011, when I took part in New World Bilingual Institute's Hope Ambassadors Program. During the three-week-long trip to rural China, I gained the opportunity to meet and befriend students who lacked my relative prosperity. Before setting out, I helped fund-raise for these students; I hadn't completely understood why these rural areas couldn't afford books or why the schools looked so shoddy, but seeing the joy on the faces of these kids made me wonder what was so special about simple notebooks and pencils. It was heartwarming to see somebody so elated about what I found ordinary. As I conversed more with these students, however, I learned why they worked so hard despite their narrower window of opportunity: they wanted to serve their community and families, to bring about change so they could improve their lives.

I was younger back then, but taking part in this trip aided my realization of what it meant to serve others and how I would serve my community as a Hokie.
ah_zafari [Contributor] 40 / 672 148  
Jan 15, 2015   #2
Can u provide us with full prompt?

then my life would be terribly different

omg, this sentence is too negative. Life is going on in other countries too. Many people live outside the US and they are way happier than Americans. I know what you meant but your sentence conveys a very wrong message. revise it plz.

I wouldn't have had the fortune of living in one of the wealthiest areas or the opportunity to attend school in one of the best school systems in the United States.

delete that part I mentioned above and combine the first sentence and this sentence as one. btw, I think this opening statement could be a bit more interesting. I mean "american dreams" or "having good education systems" sounds cliche (just my opinion)

My suggestion: I think you should open the essay with a statement about people who do not have access to high quality education, then connect it to your experience. Talk in details about your experience in the body section and finally come to the conclusion that you, as a person who had a chance to study in a wold-class education system, can make a better contribution to the society or you can also add those people who worked hard to study in the hardest situation one can ever imagine have inspired you.

hope this helps
Cheers,
Ahmad
OP jjjjjjaneyyyy 1 / 1  
Jan 15, 2015   #3
The full prompt is the title--there really isn't much to it.

I meant terrible different as in "much much different from now" -- not necessarily bad or anything, but just different. Does it come off negatively?

Thanks for your feedback, I'll incorporate as much as I can in to it!: )
ah_zafari [Contributor] 40 / 672 148  
Jan 16, 2015   #4
. Does it come off negatively?

Yes, I think it is still negative. btw, it is a better idea to talk more about inspirational role of those people you met in your trip and highlight it as an experience that gave you incentive to have a meaningful contribution to the society. This would be more impressive than talking about your father and his good luck in winning the lottery


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