Q: "Describe the unique qualities that attract you to the specific undergraduate College or School to which you are applying at the University of Michigan. How would that curriculum support your interests?" (~300 word limit)
Note: this is a transfer essay
I didn't play around with computers since I was four, nor did I read the first five chapters of "Algorithms" at the age of eight. I took interest in CS after my freshman year of college. Over the course of summer, I attended an AI bootcamp and took online introductory programming courses. Programming really resonated with me, and I thoroughly embraced the logical and practical nature of it. My current academic goal is to study a curriculum that offers an excellent CS education and cultivates my passion for AI, and I believe UM's Computer Science Engineering program supports my interest.
UM's CSE department is one of the best in the country and I am excited to explore the courses it offers. I love working with large amounts of data and very much look forward to taking Dr. Barzan Mozafari's Database class to learn about query optimization and the management of large databases. Learning about the nature of data is useful in building accurate AI's, and I wish to expand my knowledge of the latter by delving into Machine Learning (ML) theory taught by the introductory course, "Introduction to AI." From reading the course description, I can see that this is a perfect entry into AI for me as it involves all the necessary topics to get started, namely ML and Searching. To finish my degree, I intend on taking "Autonomous Robotics," an MDE course that perfectly integrates my interests in CS and AI.
Undertaking research projects with my AI team has made me a better computer scientist, and I plan to pursue research opportunities over the summer at UM. I have been following Dr. Chad Jenkins' robotics experiments on National Geographic, and I believe he is one of the best roboticists in the word, and certainly at UM. I would love the opportunity to work with his robotics research team over the summer.
My time at my current University has been an eye-opening experience. It has given me time to discover my interests, values, and what I want out of college. I am ready to find a place where I can feel at home, and I believe UM is a place where I can picture myself staying up late at night in the APRIL Lab, building tiny robots wielding twinkies. I hope to contribute my interests and values to the U-M tradition, as I am confident it will be reciprocated, and I'm ready to become a Wolverine.
Thanks for any help! I feel like the tone is quite dull and too straight to the point -- don't know if that's a bad thing, a lot people choose to tell vivid stories, maybe different is good? :\
(Also word count is over but I'll fix that later)
Any feedback is most welcome :))
Akshay, straightforward is always the best to go when writing an application essay. It saves the reviewer the bother of having to wade through irrelevant information before getting to the parts that he actually needs to consider for your application. In fact, your opening statement is eye-catching enough to create an interest on the side of the reviewer. It is a unique opening that doesn't start with the formulaic opening statement of "When I was a child of 2 I was given my first computer. Using the computer I learned about how to code..." Believe me, your way is good enough for the purpose of this essay. If you want to cut down on the word requirement, you can start by skipping the mention of the professors names and instead, mentioning just the courses. You don't need to suck up to the reviewer, he could care less about who will be teaching you since he knows these professors personally. Mentioning their names, unless they will be writing your recommendation letter does not serve any purpose in the presentation. Overall, it is a strong transfer supplement essay. It just needs some content adjustment to meet the word count. Good work!