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"I Fence for Brentwood, for those under appreciated" Common App essay:

bolivarmike75 1 / 1  
Dec 29, 2018   #1
Assignment: Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others

"I'm interested in going to Penn State,I'm looking for comments on how to improve this essay, making it stand,though I love fencing and want to continue my path as a fencer, I am also interested in computer science and want to know how I could include both topics in one essay

'i am a fencer'

Brentwood has been seen in the negative light by the media and towns around Long Island for gang violence, immigration issues, drugs, etc. But, on the other side of the fence, lies a hardworking community of underappreciated people and youth. My experience in Brentwood has been excellent. Growing up in Brentwood since the age of 12 was a diverse experience which I really enjoyed. I am Black, call me what you want African American and Haitian, and I am a fencer.

Fencing is a very physically demanding sport; it's an individual sport. It lets me work beside my teammates, while also working on being one of the captains for my team. I've tried different sports like swimming, football, and wrestling, but fencing piqued my interest. If you can train your eye to watch a split second bout, you'd understand the feeling of how thrilling each match is. The sport is so incredibly fast and precise, that after watching several matches, I was still shocked by how incredibly difficult it is to understand the movements.

Saber is for thrusting and cutting. Epee is a thrusting weapon, both weapon classes were what I happened to be interested in. Three years ago I was in Sonderling cafeteria trying out for the sport. After a week of practicing, my coach placed me in as a saber the same year I was put on as a sub for the varsity members. Now I'm a Brentwood varsity saber fencer. Understanding the feeling of it is like understanding how time runs in the mind of a fencer. fencing has taught me to be more straightforward with people, to appreciate myself from what I can accomplish from practicing on my own. As varsity (couch)member, I love training the JV team whenever I find something useful in a bout, I make sure I teach them. From my experience, I love watching how my opponents fence, seeing their techniques, the footwork and their hand movements before and as they attack. I use what I have learned while I practice for my bouts with my other varsity members. I use what I've learned on them to have a better understanding of each move.

My experience growing up in Brentwood and becoming a fencer has taught me how to be a hard worker, team leader and attain personal goals. As a leader, I want to inspire more students to join fencing because it is a great sport and gives one a sense of belonging and accomplishment.

Holt - / 7,530 2001  
Dec 31, 2018   #2
Mikerlyn, I am not sure if you can properly connect your interest in computer science and fencing in a manner that will show a period of growth on your part that helped you understand others. If you want to combine the two, then you should change the prompt from this current the following:

Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you've already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design.

I believe that you can use the open topic essay as it allows you to create a connection between fencing and computer science without having to consider meeting the prompt requirements. If you title the essay "Computer Program Fencing" or something of the sort, then you can come up with a title that will intrigue the reviewer and also give him a pretty good idea of what the essay will be about.

In the essay, you can use the keyboard as your Epee, the thrusting weapon, since the keyboard is what helps to create the program. The Saber, can be represented by the software execution. You cut and thrust based on completed code and how it works. Every code that works is a score on your part. Every coding problem, is a score for the other team. I think that's how fencing works right? You get the idea. Your quick scan of the program when the code has a problem is similar to how you are forced to strategize on your feet during a tournament, finding the weak spots and attacking them to help you create a running code.

I'm not sure if my descriptions are accurate but I was just trying to give you an idea of how you could combine the two interests that you have in the essay, provided you change the prompt to one that gives you more freedom to be creative in your presentation. Right now, your above essay is suitable for the prompt but does not allow you to combine the two subjects due to prompt parameters.
OP bolivarmike75 1 / 1  
Dec 31, 2018   #3
Thank you for your advice I'll get started on another essay, besides putting both topics together how was this essay? Is there anything to improve on?

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