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'All math problems' - UC Transfer Personal Statement #1

JonathanKim 1 / 1  
Nov 26, 2011   #1
Prompt: What is your intended major? Discuss how your interest in the subject developed and describe any experience you have had in the field - such as volunteer work, internships and employment, participation in student organizations and activities - and what you have gained from your involvement.

All math problems looked like one plus one back when I was kid, it was just too easy. I remember back when I was in second grade I was "the wizard" within my class and I would always be the first one to finish while maintaining a perfect score. To be honest, it was definitely something I should've realized earlier and kept on pursuing with the best of my efforts. However, that didn't happen...You see I was born with a defected ear. It was definitely hard to focus on school when kids within the classroom, and outside of the classroom, looked at me like I was some animal. I distinctively remember the murmuring and giggles across the room as they glance back and forth at me making up stories of how I don't have a left ear. How did I know they were making stories? Some cold-hearted male classmates would call me out saying, "hey did a dog bite if off!", "Can you hear me one ear!"...I was hurt a lot for something I was born with. This affected me as a whole and led me to not care about anything. I just wanted to fit in.

Fast-forwarding to high school, I grew out of my hair to cover my one ear just wanting to be seen as normal for once and it worked. I had the "cool crew" to hang out with during lunch and after school, joined the basketball team, volleyball team, flirted with numerous girls, and there were drugs. This was my high school life. I didn't care about the future, so I rarely studied and did only the minimum requirement, which was homework, and still managed to get decent grades...Especially in mathematics. I remember vividly each day in my pre-calc class I would turn in my homework and as soon as I sat on my chair I slept. It was a terrible habit, but I passed and moved on to Calc AB my senior year. However, I did the exact same routine as my pre-calc class and I told myself I'll do perfectly fine. I actually didn't, I had a D throughout the whole year and I felt like I had no hope in passing the AP test.

Well, the big day came and I smoked the day before it because I felt all hope was lost and it seemed as if I sucked at everything. I felt extremely defeated and felt as if there was no career path for me. The AP score comes in sitting on the dining table and I felt skeptical at looking at it, because I already had two ones prior to AP Calc, so my sister grabs it tears it open and says, "hey you passed." At first I thought she was lying, but I took at a look at it too and I couldn't stop smiling.

This is when I knew that math was and is the subject for me. My interest in math was developing up until my senior year and now my path is clear. All I need to do is persevere and aim towards becoming a master in mathematics.

By the way, it says to also describe your experience in the field and my experience in the field has nothing to do with math. should I write it in?
blueshore 3 / 47  
Nov 26, 2011   #2
Hi ! I think your story is very unique, but you need to answer how that affects your passion for maths.Maybe you can use this to say how maths was the only thing you felt made sense, within its equations and problems, you felt more capable. Talk about why you chose maths as a major and how that relates to the unique experiences you faced when you were younger.
OP JonathanKim 1 / 1  
Nov 27, 2011   #3
So it the beginning ok? or is it too much story? I'm not so sure when I should cut it off and start talking about when things started making sense to me. Thank for the help!
devotchka 1 / 2  
Nov 28, 2011   #4
Everything up to the third paragraph sounded like something that should be put on the second prompt, how you overcame people making fun of you.

You briefly talked about how your interest developed in your third paragraph and the first two sentences of your first paragraph, I think you should elaborate more. I also think you should add the experience you had and find a way to tie it in with math. My friend, also a math major, talked about how we can communicate with math, she used her experience of being president of our student government. I hope this helps, I know it's probably last minute. Return the favor if you can.

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