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Lafayette supplemental essay: I read so I can listen


ngokhoa99 11 / 58 14  
Dec 30, 2016   #1
There's a difference between being busy and being engaged. Lafayette comes alive each day with the energy of students who are deeply engaged in their academic, co-curricular and extracurricular explorations. In response to the prompt below, keep it simple - choose one activity and add depth to our understanding of your involvement.

What do you do? Why do you do it? (20-200 words)


I read, so I can listen.



I've been reading ever since I can. As I got older, my books turned from exploring the world to exploring people. When I was seven, I was exhilarated by Tom Sawyer's adventures, and when I was fifteen, I was contemplating the morals of slavery with Huckleberry Finn. I can't help wanting to know what people think, how they feel, or how they would react to something. I'm fascinated with the first-person viewpoint.

I saw Chanrithy Him's parents killed by the Khmer Rouge. I hid in the Achterhuis with Anne Frank. I watched soldiers die in Dang Thuy Tram's arms. Seeing the thoughts running through those people's minds, wondering how could human beings treat each others so cruelly, I believe we all need a third-person omniscient viewpoint.

There's discrimination, racism, religious conflicts, and wars, because we don't fully understand each other. We may never will, but we have to try. To sympathize with others, we need context. We need their experience. We need to read into their lives.

There aren't usually books written about the people around me, so I talk to them. For the people who I can't readily talk to, the Cambodians, the Jews, the Native Americans, the war refugees, the veterans, the drug addicts, the convicts: I read about them.

I read, so when I listen, I can understand.


The word limit is 200 and I'm at 227. Please review my essay. Thank you!

rnsnz18 10 / 33 4  
Dec 31, 2016   #2
@ngokhoa99
First for your word problem, in your first, second and last paragraph you give too many examples, specially on the last one when you mention the people you can't talk to. Besides, it will be better to stay with just one example and deepen on why you are interested on that one and how it makes you want to underdtand people. Look at the prompt again. They ask for passion and not just involvement. I can see you really like to understand the point of viee of others. But i didn't feel your passion enough, if your essay transmit the passion to the reader so then the reader feels even passionate about your activity, then you will have an excellent essay. Please try to emphasize more on why you find pleasure in that activity.
kkaur199 1 / 2  
Dec 31, 2016   #3
I think this essay is good overall, but the first and second paragraphs seem a little too similar, example wise. I would try to introduce something new in the second paragraph. Maybe try to tie in another idea or example that isn't going back to characters of books. Overall, I liked the way you tied in the whole theme of delving deep into books and how you connect to them. Just try to make a few changes within your paragraphs and you should be good.
Holt [Contributor] - / 9,017 2713  
Dec 31, 2016   #4
Khoa, I do not believe that your essay is good enough for the prompt. You read so you can listen. Fine. But what does that do for you? You explain that you learn about racial discrimination and other things, then what? There is no corresponding action on your part to change anything. You just read and became educated about a topic. End of story. The essay is asking you about your civic mindedness. The method by which you contribute to the improvement of a society is the focal point of the essay. Why do you do something ?

For example, you can say that I am a Red Cross volunteer. Why do you volunteer at the Red Cross? You volunteer at the Red Cross because you want to help the under served communities of your area of residence when there are natural calamities. This is your way of giving back and letting people who need help know that they are not forgotten and that people are willing to help them, whether they as for help or not.

Think deep, think social relevance, think of personal improvement through service to others. That is the kind of slant that will make this response an interesting and enlightened one for the reviewer. That is what will make him interested in what you have to say and make the essay memorable to him.


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