"Tell us about a personal quality, talent, accomplishment, contribution or experience that is important to you. What about this quality or accomplishment makes you proud and how does it relate to the person you are?"
I moved to Trinidad and Tobago in 2009. Because of their lovely beaches and weather, I thought that I could finally settle in a hospitable country. Despite the unfamiliar African and Indian culture, the Trinidadian slang, and being a minority, I had a feeling of adapting to the new environment.
On the first day of school, I entered the wearing the school's blue shirt and khaki pants. The school was painted in light blue, giving me a sense that I actually belonged there. Unfortunately, my schoolmates did not give me that feeling. They ignored me, shoved me, called me "Chiney," and harassed me in every possible way.
Few weeks from then, I joined the soccer team. It turned out that I was the youngest, and the only Asian in the team. Naturally, people's attitudes carried onto the field. When I missed the required shots, people came to inquire from me how I had managed to join the team with such incompetent skills. Soon, they started to tackle me unduly aggressively. In one instance, one pushed me down and said "soccer ain't for tiny Chineys like you! You don't belong here."
That night, I laid down on my bed contemplating whether to quit the team or not. I was afraid that this hatred and discrimination would continue until I graduated. However, I realized that if I quit, I was doing nothing more than capitulating myself to the racial segregation.
The next day, after completing my school time, I headed for the soccer pitch. When I saw the goal post from far away, I stopped walking and hesitated whether I should keep trying or not. But, I kept reminding myself that this was my chance. A chance I believed that if I let go, it will never come back. I thus continued walking towards the sandy pitch. I sat on the bench to put on my soccer cleats. One member came up and asked me "how can you kick a ball with those feet?" I replied, "I will show you today."
As the game began, I stayed on the upper portion of the field to wait for chances. As usual, when I threw my right arm up and signaled for a pass, my teammates ignored me. Then, I knew that method would not get me any further. I therefore went to compete for the ball. I was pushed to and fro, but I also pushed them back. When I stole my opponent's ball, I took a shot immediately and watched it bend into the goal. After the game, people approached me and apologized for the mistreatment which had happened before. What surprised them was the fact that I accepted their apology with a smile. Soon people in my school started accepting me not as a small Asian, but who I really am.
By observing the change I have created, I gained a confidence that I could overcome greater adversities that I would face in the future. As a result, I learned to cope with greater issues that I faced in my life.
I know it needs some work. But can you guys please give me specific areas I should touch upon?