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"my own willpower to obtain it" -Transfer to HY, Brown supplement, something missing?


flipin12 1 / -  
Feb 28, 2011   #1
(Required) You have already told us about yourself in the Common Application, with its list of activities, Short Answer, and Personal Essay. In this required second essay, tell us something that you would like us to know about you that we might not get from the rest of your application - or something that you would like a chance to say more about. Please limit your essay to fewer than 500 words. (Use an attached sheet if applying on paper.)

"So X, Jake says you're trying to leave Ole Miss for Yale?" I was friends with everyone in that small room, and suddenly they all seemed to be staring at me expectantly. Sigh, secrets never last long in Mississippi. Not wanting to offend anyone, I opted for the classic "It's not like that, I'm just exploring my options" and deliberately buried myself in Kafka's The Trial. Unsurprisingly, my tactic failed. "Well, aren't you, I don't know, scared?" ...Scared?

"I mean, even if my application doesn't quite make it, I'm sure it'll all work out how it's supposed to, and I'll still have Ole Mi-" "No, no, not like that. What if you do get in, doesn't that kind of scare you?" I still didn't quite get it. "To be honest, it would be a blessing."

The once quiet onlookers inevitably jumped in: "Aren't you afraid of starting over? Having to make new friends, build new relationships, adapt to a new culture?" "Not to mention, here you have programs and faculty that want to see you succeed, do you want to leave that for somewhere that you'd probably become just another kid?"

I paused, a bit stunned, but I understood where my friends were coming from. Many of them were used to a lifestyle that was mostly without change. They were used to always having someone to help them, and had reservations about giving that up. My story is different, and always has been. While I was growing up, my parents worked tirelessly to ensure we could live in an affluent area. I've always admired what they did for our family, even if I never saw them much.

Our early morning conversations consisted only of "X, it's time to get up." For the rest of the day, I was on my own. Getting dressed and going to school were my responsibility and if I wanted breakfast or lunch, I would need to make it myself. By the time I became a teenager, I never needed to dream of independence; it had always been a part of my life. Ever since I was a mop-headed child, my life has been filled with uncertainties; I've never had time to fear them. If I had, I would never have invested in creating my own company or dared make the transition from Chicago to Mississippi. Even now, despite trading my bowl cut for a beard, I still maintain the independent spirit of my youth.

Life has prepared me to take my own initiatives and taught me that if I truly want something, I will need my own willpower to obtain it. My past experiences have helped me stay positive through adversity, and confident in my ability to make the most of my surroundings. I acknowledge that there may be challenges that come with being a transfer student to Yale University, but I am not afraid of them. Instead, I am prepared to engage any obstacles I face the same way I always have, head-on.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Mar 3, 2011   #2
Wow, you did a great job with the storytelling. You are a writer, for sure.
It is good to do a line break so that the dialogue is clear:
...supposed to, and I'll still have Ole Mi-"
"No, no, not like that. What if you do get in, doesn't that kind of scare you?"
I still didn't quite get it. "To be honest, it would be a blessing."

They were used to always having...it's time to get up." For the rest of the day, I was on my own. Getting dressed and going to school were my responsibility and if I wanted breakfast or lunch, I would need to make it myself. This part is all smug sounding. IT is not going to make the reader actually think you are more self-reliant than others. It just shows that you like to think you are special, as we all do. So, this part does not have the intended effect, I think. But you are a great writer, I'm not criticizing... just suggesting a different approach... an approach focused on your short term goals and career interests, etc. Show them your plan.
peanutbutteryum 2 / 3  
Mar 3, 2011   #3
Maybe make sure it doesn't seem like you never considered your friend's reservations. You don't want to seem like you didn't consider all aspects of transferring.

Otherwise I really enjoyed it, except maybe you could cut back on the story-telling, and talk more about you as a person and how you are different


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