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Opinion to defend, in conflict with the majority - admission essay


eminemya 8 / -  
Mar 4, 2008   #1
"thanks" cannot express my gratitude thoroughly...

Tell us about an opinion that you have had to defend or an incident in your life which placed you in conflict with the beliefs of a majority of people and explain how this affected your value system.

I have been considered "successful" all through my academic life for my excellent performance in scholastic tests and extracurricular activities. And now, I'm expected to continue to excel in Tsinghua University and to study abroad after graduation.

But one day, I suddenly realized that I had strived to become "perfect" only in others' eyes. Intoxicated in countless praise, I had been following the social expectation for all my life. Deeply, I began to ask myself whether to continue to follow the "well-designed" road or not.

After thorough analysis, the idea to transfer to MIT popped out. Not wanting simply to simulate others, I began to rebel the "expected pattern" of my life...

"Are you crazy?" most of my friends responded instantaneously when I told them that I'm applying for transfer to MIT. They warned me that I was risking my education in Tsinghua University for there was a danger that I might fail on both sides with the heavy burden of tests.

"Don't be so impatient, young man. You may enjoy a better chance to be admitted by MIT after the best fundamental education in the world here." I got almost the same answer from respected professors.

In my country, most people believe that students should study abroad only after college. But my aim is to become a global talent and I need to widen my view to build up my value system critical and open. Moreover, I found MIT's courses more flexible, which may release my pent up interest under the constant guidance here in China.

The reasons above were not clichés which were commonly heard around. I arrived at my conclusion only after discussing with people who really know something about the difference between Chinese and American college education.

To seek support for my idea, I first went to ask my uncle Jesse, who graduated from MIT after college in China. He had deep personal understanding about my transfer decision and warned me that most Chinese may form their relatively narrow criteria during college and consequently will have greater difficulties to adapt to the global trend.

Also through the talk with many of my senior alumni doing research in US, I learnt that they often found themselves fall behind foreign students who had grown up in an education system which encourages critical thinking and multiplicity. As my Native American professor described, counselors here still carefully fed the knowledge to the "babies in the cradles", which greatly hampers the full development of independent personality

Instead, I discovered that my opponents' remark should be reexamined carefully. Intimidated by the seemingly insurmountable transfer process, most freshmen concluded that chances may be better after graduation as told. And the professors were just talking about the usual "safe" road, which most pioneers traveled by. Out of instinct, they were simply used to the present modes and were reluctant to examine it carefully.

Because of this conflict, I have become more critical in judging different opinions. I have learned to analyze information objectively and to accept opinions and viewpoints contrary to my own. Before, I was too afraid to stand out to defend for myself against the "authority" and only carefully followed the "well-designed" academic road. Intoxicated in countless praise, I had strived to become "perfect" for all my life only in others' eyes. Not wanting simply to continue to simulate others, I began to think out the "expected pattern" by myself.

Furthermore, unlike Mathematics, reality refuses certain formulae to succeed. There exits no absolute right answer and life is not all about success, but the taste of various kinds of chocolate. Defeat won't destroy me but the withdrawal out of fear will make me regret.
EF_Team2 1 / 1,708  
Mar 5, 2008   #2
Greetings!

This is a very good essay! Here are some editing tips for you:

Not wanting simply to simulate others, I began to rebel against the "expected pattern" of my life...
"Are you crazy?" most of my friends responded instantaneously when I told them that I'm applying for a transfer.

Whenever I asked advice from the respected professors, I got almost the same answer.

in harmony over the great cultural chasm in the future.

Through the conflict, I suffered but became more steadfast about my life's aim.

Best of luck!

Thanks,

Sarah, EssayForum.com
susandaine - / 1  
Mar 5, 2008   #3
Hey, there! Could you tell me your email address? I'm from HK... Junior year in high school and i know Tsinghua University... a nice place :p

And something about your essay... There's no doubt that you did a good job! No grammatical mistakes and your vocabulary is just fine >.< but what i wanna talk about is i personally think you should focus on more on your personal thinking and how you felt when you finally make the decision... Eeee, the materials you use in the essay seems to be kinda clichez ( or platitude )... just from my point of view. Since my brother was admitted into Harvard 3 years ago, i've read many essays and right now i'm also doing the apply work myself...

Best of luck >.<
EF_Team2 1 / 1,708  
Mar 9, 2008   #4
Here are some editing suggestions:

I need to widen my view to build up my value system to be more critical and open.

Also, through the talk with many of my senior alumni doing research in the U.S., I learnt that they often found themselves falling behind foreign students

counselors here still carefully feed knowledge to the "babies in the cradles",

Out of instinct, they were simply used to the present methodsand were reluctant to examine them carefully.

life is not all about success, but the taste of various kinds of chocolate - If this is meant to be a sort of Forrest Gump reference, I might say instead "life is not all about success, but about tasting all the chocolates in the box."

Best of luck in your studies!

Thanks,

Sarah, EssayForum.com


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