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Glitter (Dance and Culture) - Princeton Supplement Essay


sinkclap101 1 / -  
Dec 21, 2014   #1
Any and all suggestions/edits/thoughts would be great!
Using the quotation below as a starting point, reflect on the role that culture plays in your life.
"Culture is what presents us with the kinds of valuable things that can fill a life. And insofar as we can recognize the value in those things and make them part of our lives, our lives are meaningful." please write an essay of about 500 words (no more than 650 words and no less than 250 words). about a person, event, or experience that helped you define one of your values or in some way changed how you approach the world.


To understand competitive dance, you have to understand glitter. First and foremost, it gets everywhere. Even if you don't think you were around glitter, if you're a competitive dancer you'll still be finding these minute flecks of sparkle in your scalp months after competition season ends. Competitive dance is like glitter, one speck can still be noticeable and will gleam occasionally when it catches the light, but when you combine all of the tiny insignificant pieces of glitter, you create something sparkly, something that is just meant to shine and be noticed. That's what the Clear Lake Rockettes were. We shone, snagging National Championship winning jackets year after year, working hard year-round to make sure we were the best. So when at the end-of-season banquet our directors would always say, "these girls truly bleed pink and purple glitter," it wasn't just figuratively.

While the dance world can seem trivial, it means so much to those of us lucky to be a part of it. From fourth through tenth grade I competed with the Rockettes, and got to experience everything that came along with joining a competitive studio team. Being a dancer taught me so much about life, and what it means to be committed to something. Adjusting to life on Rockettes was hard, as I wasn't a very good dancer nor used to not being good to something. For my first few years on the team, I would come home occasionally in tears, not used to being screamed at for messing up or doing something wrong. However, even in elementary school I felt an intense need to succeed. Through sticking with dance, I've made some of the greatest friends I've ever had. I know that nothing feels worse than making a mistake at a competition and knowing that if the team loses, it could be your fault. I also know that one of the happiest moments I've had is when my director asked me to learn how to do a cartwheel without hands, and I came back a few months later to walk into the studio to say "I got it!" I grew up in the dance world, and my culture is built off of these moments, and every moment I was wearing pink and purple.

Looking back on my career in competitive dance, I am filled with so many emotions and memories that I can't be anything but grateful. Leaving Rockettes to make time for my high school dance team and schoolwork was one of the hardest decisions I've ever made. I said goodbye to what had defined my entire adolescence, and opened up time that I'd never had to fill with something else. My high school dance team has provided me and my friends with a less intense opportunity to still be a part of that world, competing at the same competitions and sitting in the stands cheering for the Rockettes until our lungs give out. Though my culture may not be traditional, it is mine, and I will claim my life as a dancer with pride, because it taught me so much, and helped me grow in so many ways. I learned how to think of my team before myself, but mainly, I learned a lot about ambition. Dance made me competitive, to want to be the best, and taught me that hard work really does pay off and to never stop working to be a little better than the day before. I know that I am ready to leave competitive dance and move on to other things, and I don't regret leaving for a second looking at how much I've grown in the past two years since I quit Rockettes, but a part of me will always bleed pink and purple glitter.
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Dec 21, 2014   #2
Sheridan, your essay is quite informative and effective. I am just at a loss as to what cultural value you maker reference to in the essay. Also, which part is most important as the central theme, the glitter or the dance? I suggest that you choose to center your introduction around the topic that best illustrates the cultural value that you are trying to highlight in your essay. Make it clear from the start. Tell us what the value you are connecting it to is and then show us the connection by narrating your development as a person involved in the world of dance. That should require just some simple revisions regarding paragraphs and sentences :-)


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