Hello, I am new here and I would really appreciate your feedback. Does my personal statement have to be doubled spaced? Do I have to include my name and a title in it?
UC schools Prompt #1: Describe the world you come from-for example, your family, community or school- and tell us how your world has shaped your dreams and aspirations.
Personal Statement: My World
As a girl who comes from a large family, I know the responsibilities that come with being the oldest. My parents are strict about my education; therefore, college is a must. If I do not work hard in high school, or if I get in trouble, I know that it can really damage my chances at being successful. My parents push me to work as hard as I can because they know life is difficult and having a great education is the only sure way to succeed. Since I will be the first one to go to college, they expect me to work hard and avoid making excuses. "You must be an example to the younger ones," they say. By keeping this in mind, I push myself harder in order to prove myself. There really is no time for me to let my problems affect my education. It does not matter whether I had a weekend full of yells, arguments, and police phone calls; my job is to go to school the next day. This is the way my parents have raised me and I am thankful for it. Although high expectations and family issues have been overwhelming to me at times, I acknowledge the positive effect it has on me now.
My greatest challenge at home has been growing up in an alcohol-based environment. Ever since my mom married my stepdad, I experienced the effects of alcoholism. I still remember the long nights of arguments and beer cans on the floor. My dad regularly came back from work drunk, sometimes even taking his frustration out on us. Because of his addiction to alcohol we were unable to pay for an expensive place to live in, causing us to struggle when looking for apartments. The way that he spent most of his paychecks on beer knowing that we needed the money for more important things was simply unreasonable to me. After all, family was supposed to be his main priority
Although I realized my problems at home, I always found a way to cope and be resilient. Once, my brother and I had to go live at my mom's friend's house for two weeks because my mother decided to break up with my dad. Those two weeks taught me the importance of determination. Not only did I worry about my family's future, but I was also concerned about school. As always, school remained my first priority. I pushed myself and my younger brother harder to be in school on time to continue performing well regardless of our situation. I had to wake up earlier than usual and ride more buses, but I managed to do it .At school I saw familiar faces every day, unlike my temporary home. I felt awkward and uncomfortable living in a different house. I felt unhappy knowing that my mother and siblings were away from me. However, I set my mind to concentrate in school and remained focused. I forgot about my troubles once I arrived in school every morning. Just like teachers, I wore a smile, putting my personal problems aside. Every day since then I have become more determined to reach my goals. I often think, "Why make the situation harder on myself if it can help me become stronger."
The world I come from has shaped my dreams and aspirations by providing me with significant values, and most importantly, helping me build the confidence I need in order to make my dreams come true. Now that I am a senior in high school, I know that I would have never accomplished as must as I did without my family. Although the struggles I faced with them had a harsh impact on my life, I was never defeated. My parents were always encouraging me to keep advancing in life and in school. While my classmates enjoyed late night parties and movies, I studied for tests and finished my homework. I understood that school came first in all cases. The obstacles I overcame in order to get prepared for college really shaped my goals for the future. I now realize that if I was able to reach all my goals in high school with my family's problems, I will definitely be successful in college living on my own. Nothing can stop me from receiving a college diploma and becoming a professional adult. I am positively eager to become part of a larger family .