First and foremost is this a very rough draft and taking a new approach. At the end of the essay there are a few bullets, so bare with me. All feed back is greatly appreciated as the deadline for these essays are March 1st
Essay, draft 1
Let me take you back to my junior year, the year 2004. This was a very drastic turning point in my life. I was involved in a gruesome car accident the Sunday before Spring Break. Everything I had planned was put on hold for the next four months. In my accident my body was completely mangled. I broke my femur, my pelvis, my collar bone, and six ribs puncturing my left lung. I was bed ridden and confined to a wheelchair. During this time I developed a love for puzzles, brain teasers, and ____. I missed the remaining part of my junior year.
I returned to school the following year with a mere nine months till graduation. Just like everyone else, I could not wait - even though I didn't have any plans for college or a fancy job lined up. All I know is that my grades drastically improved the last two years (having to adjust to the grading system here compared to Canada) and like every 18 year old, I thought the world was at my feet.
After graduation my grandfather immediately asked, "What do you plan on doing with your life now son?" How was I to answer his question? I wanted of go to college, but it wasn't in my family's history. We didn't have the money for school. That didn't stop me though. That fall I enrolled at my local community college. (Better transition)I wasn't quite up to college level in reading or math. Trying to juggle a fulltime job and college I passed the two courses, putting me at college level. I enrolled the following semester as a full time student. I started with four classes, and slowly one by one dropped courses left and right. Before I knew it I was a college drop out. This was first time I ever quit anything. At the ripe age of 19, I was blinded by the materialistic items my job was fulfilling me with. I guess this wasn't my time for college. I wasn't focused or ready for the challenge that lay ahead.
I wasn't happy with myself for dropping out of school. I knew I needed to do something with my life, but still wasn't quite sure what. I enlisted into the United States Air Force. The process was quite extensive; screenings, interviews, tests, and meeting with the surgeon general about my prior injuries. He approved my waiver and allowed me to enlist. I shipped off to San Antonio for Basic Training on September 25th 2007. My time in the Air Force was cut short due to my injuries and requires I be medically discharged. During those two months I learned more about myself then I have the twenty years prior. I was taught about integrity, will power, and excellence in everything I do. I was taught how to work as a team, pay attention to details, and help others out. This was quite an eye opening experience. It could be said that it was a turning point, a time where I became more focused.
(maybe elaborate on some of these qualities a bit?)
Once again I was faced with the challenge and question, "What do I want from your life?" I had to rethink everything. With my family there was only one thing, find a job and work. They didn't much care to listen to my plan, or what I wanted to do. So I went back to my previous job doing then only thing I knew and not getting ahead. I was frustrated but sucked it up. When the economy fell apart it took a toll on the company being in the oil field business. That March the company announced a lay off. I thought to myself, if I got laid off it would give me a chance to open a new window and go back to school for good this time. (Were my prayers answered.)I was one for the seven which got laid off. I wasn't affected as much as one might think. I had a game plan. I was determined to succeed this time. I was going to be the first person in my family to go and graduate from college. I completed all the necessary forms, applications and financial aid packet for the summer semester. I enrolled in six hours, to maximum they would allow for a summer semester. I couldn't wait for school to start. I was like a kid during Christmas. The night before the semester finally rolled around I couldn't sleep with anticipation and excitement. I didn't know what I had in store for me but I was determined to take it head on and conquer anything. My first semester back was a struggle getting in the grove of learning, studying and taking notes. I pulled it off though. After the six weeks and when grades were submitted I pulled off the unthinkable. I brought home two A's. At this point nothing my family could say would take away my determination, my focus, and my will to succeed at being a college student.
(break this into smaller paragraphs possibly)
Through the course of six years, having ups and downs, having things happen not as planned I am highly motivated, extremely focused, goal driven, and ready to take anything on that lies in my way. I am applying to the College of Natural Sciences seeking a degree in computer science. I am a great problem solver, fast thinker and won't stop working towards the final outcome. Computer science is about problem solving, and with my history of problems and how I over came them I feel I am a strong candidate that will succeed at accomplishing the task at hand. I have the ability to pay attention to detail and the dedication to press forward until a specific solution is found. I love brain teaser and puzzles. I love a challenge that requires me to think outside the box for a solution.
done well Joshua !
But i think you want to make your introduction more academic by adding a PROPER thesis statement which will be an excellant outline for your essay! and then you might end up changing your body paragraph
overall the essay is OK
Thanks for the input, I will continue to edit this, shrink it down and add more insight why I want Computer Science. I will also formulate a strong introduction. Thanks again
I have been working on this all morning. I haven't tackles the introduction as suggested but here are my current changes. Still needs some work as noted by the bullets at the end
- Talk about my love for puzzles as a child
- Talk about having to pay attention to details in military
- How I love how computers are constantly evolving (opening paragraph)
- Mention why computer science, what made me choose computer science (opening paragraph)
- Add little ties from closing paragraph back into main story
- Condense, edit, trim, critique,
- Stay focused on topic at hand
- Mention things I do in my free time, photoshop, brain teasers, reading, writing, gym, ect
- Do I need to pick just 1 or 2 really significant events instead of a running history?
- Computer science because it is ever evolving, drastic change in environment, that experience relates the computer field
- Math and science strong points
- Setting goals, achieving them, and setting new ones, self confidence
- Rather go to school when ready, rather than being told I need to
- All my struggles has made me the person I am today. (elaborate, details and examples)
Any other suggesting would be greatly appreciated.
Rapoch, thanks for the suggestions. I will take everything into consideration and continue to critique and edit this a few more times. I'm worried that it might be wordy? Also do you think I should keep the events, my accident, trying school, working, attempting air force, then going back to school, or pick one even, elaborate in that and tie it into why I am more focused now then before??
I missed the remaining part of my junior year. --- when you write this sentence, it establishes a theme for the essay. In the reader's mind, this seems to indicate that the essay is going to be about how you missed much of jr year. But actually, I think you have something more to express, too, so try to capture it in a sentence and use that sentence -- a sentence worthy of your essay -- to end the first paragraph.
This is important not just for this essay, but for any time you want to convey a point powerfully through writing. When people talk about the structure of an essay, it is about the thesis statement. Let the essay be like a target with thesis statement at the center. It's the core. It and the rest of the body of the essay mutually support each other, making a deep impression in the reader's mind.