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"My life was pure bliss" - APPEAL ESSAY to go to a school of my dreams

diondrab93 1 / 1  
Mar 18, 2011   #1
Hi everyone! I just want to thank you in advance for your help. I recently applied to U of I in Urbana Champaign and got denied. I would like to appeal to them however I am having a tough time getting my essay together. It can only be 300 words and they would like for me to provide new and compelling information as to why my grades were the way they were. I had already written an essay to them informing them that my father had passed away so I am really stumped as to what I could put into the appeal!! PLEASE HELP!

The following is my original essay:

It was an easy summer day, the wind gently blew my hair off of the back of my neck and the sun lightly kissed my cheek as I smiled and tip-toed barefoot through the grass wet with dew. "Shhhhhhh," I whispered to myself. Anxious to keep quiet as I maneuvered my way through the green jungles of my back yard, I crept, the way a snake would creep when plotting its attack on its prey. Before I knew it, I was ready to pounce. I leapt off of the ground and clung to his back. He roared a mighty roar...but I wouldn't let go. I clawed and I clung as he kicked off, running full speed I held on for my life. Suddenly, he turned around, pulling me off with great ease and piercing my stomach with his paws. I was forced to give in and bellow out a laugh so deep, that even my dad was shocked at the sound of my voice. I remember that day like it was yesterday, the two of us singing the songs of sweet and pure joy. That day has never been so vivid a picture in my mind, as it was the day I found out my dad was no longer with me.

My life was pure bliss; I had good grades, a loving and supportive foundation, and an even greater love for life itself. From pounding pavement playing riveting games of "Red Light, Green Light", to indulging in long and intense games of Monopoly, I was the kid that never stopped smiling. That was, until reality was served to me on a silver hospital lunch tray. "Your dad is in the hospital; his brain is enlarged and he has an irregular heart beat". That was the beginning of freshman year. After having a father who had been so active in my life for 14 years I was more than devastated when he couldn't get up and come with me to my Freshman meetings, see me off for my first homecoming, and help me with my homework. In the mornings when I expected his dark chestnut colored eyes to be the first thing I saw, sometimes hurt me the most. Everyday he drove me to school; our conversations about African American history were priceless. I broke down every time I went to the hospital, Rush Intensive Care Unit, all of the doctors knew my name. He promised me that sophomore year he would be recovered and active in my high school life. I believed him, I trusted him to do as he said. By January of 2008, he was on dialysis-- two times a day. He needed a heart and kidney transplant at this point.

The day I found out he passed away I was deeply saddened and hurt...so much that I passed out after receiving the news. When I gained consciousness I felt numb and as time progressed I completely stopped caring about my future as well as my present. My grades slipped and I breezed through school as if nothing mattered. That was until I realized I had almost washed my entire sophomore year down the tubes. Life had never hit me so hard. Beating off the smothering pain of loss, I soon decided to put my best foot forward and proceed in discovering myself. After recognizing the mental state I had been in for so long and after numerous visits to the grief counselor, I decided I wanted to get a degree in psychology. I feel that this would help me to understand why I had gotten so distracted from my schoolwork and being my usual cheerful self. I feel that understanding the complex features of one's mind and incorporating that with common logic, deductive reasoning will most efficiently prepare me for law school. I intend to go on and become a corporate attorney. EventuallyI plan to open my own law firm as well as open a summer school for minority teens that are interested in fields such as psychology, behavioral science, English composition and creative arts but may not have enough money to be enrolled in these types of programs. In doing this I wish to provide a more culturally diverse foundation for young scholars in the future.
Rajiv 55 / 400  
Mar 19, 2011   #2
Hello Diondra, very sorry to learn about your having lost your dad.

You say this was the essay you submitted originally, but it did not impress them enough and they have asked for more compelling information that they reconsider your application. Well, this is a good essay, you've written it well, communicating your sense of loss and how it affected you and your focus.

It is great that you're making the effort to put yourself back on track, and your interest in psychology to understand why you went through the pain puts it in even more positive light. Point though is, that as far as this university goes, you have done your best and it wasn't lacking either. What you do next can best come from your own mind now.

Good luck.
OP diondrab93 1 / 1  
Mar 20, 2011   #3
Thank You very much for your response! it is very much appreciated!
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Mar 21, 2011   #4
Too many modifiers... you should get rid of some of those adjectives and adverbs... especially "lightly," "gently," etc.
Strunk and White advise us not to overuse modifiers.


This essay is going to be very effective, I think! The best way to improve it is to add more detail about your plans, goals, and deadlines. Tell all about your intentions. This essay already has some discussion of your plans for the future, and more discussion of those plans would be even better. Try to shorten the story as much as possible by saying the same things in fewer words. Kill some of those modifiers. Add detail to your discussion about your plan for the future.

I hope they accept your appeal!

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