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"My parents focused on helping me" - UCF application


Bordonarov 1 / -  
Sep 6, 2009   #1
I am writing 2 essays for UCF right now and here is one of them. It's kind of a first draft with a little input from someone else so far. I believe i need to have a stronger introduction but this is what I have so far. Both my essays together have to be under 7000 letters. The question is:

#2 How has your family history, culture or environment influenced who you are?

My family has been a big influence on who I am over the past 17 years of my life. My parents in particular have always encouraged me to improve in everything I do in or out of school. I also feel being an only child has been an advantage for me because they were always focused on helping me rather then three or four children.

My parents have always cared for me and expected me to accomplish everything to the best of my ability. For all my projects and homework my mom would help keep me on track and concentrated to finish it on time with my best possible effort. During my junior year I encountered problems in my math class. My dad would often help review my work and my mom suggested I attend after school help to improve my education. My parents were the most helpful around the time I took my SATS, they hired a tutor and signed me up for SAT extra help.

Sophomore year they also suggested that I join wrestling to get more involved. At the time I did not want to, but after a year it was one of the best things that happened during my school career. My parents would drive me to practice daily and even come watch tournaments, which were sometimes hours away, to cheer me on. Some of the success I have reached in school and wrestling can be dedicated to my family from all their help.

Besides helping me progress through school, my parents have also shared their morals and beliefs with me. My parents morals have helped me live my life without getting into negative activities such as smoking, taking drugs, or partying. Their morals also play a role in the people I become friends with because I look for friends with similar morals and interests.

With all the help I have recieved from my parents throughout my high school life, I believe I am ready to take on college. Although I never completely enjoyed being raised by strict parents, in the end it has been more of a help to me then anyone else.

Llamapoop123 7 / 442  
Sep 6, 2009   #2
My family has been a big influence on who I am over the past 17 years of my life.

^Wonderfully boring way to begin your essay. I wonder how many others will start their essays with something like this.

For all my projects and homework my mom would help keep me on track and concentrated to finish it on time with my best possible effort. During my junior year I encountered problems in my math class. My dad would often help review my work and my mom suggested I attend after school help to improve my education. My parents were the most helpful around the time I took my SATS, they hired a tutor and signed me up for SAT extra help.

^This just makes you seem dependent and immature.

Their morals also play a role in the people I become friends with because I look for friends with similar morals and interests.

^You do not befriend people who have different interests?

With all the help I have recieved from my parents throughout my high school life, I believe I am ready to take on college.

^It seems that you have never taken initiative in high school. I wonder how you will fair in college.
EF_Sean 6 / 3,491  
Sep 7, 2009   #3
Take your essay, print it off, then crumple it into a little paper ball and throw it into your trash can.

Okay, so that isn't strictly necessary, but just deleting it doesn't have the same bitter satisfaction to it. In any event, you need to start over. Your essay tells us that your parents cared about you, helped you with your homework, and imparted their values to you. I don't care. The admission's officers don't care. Most likely, no one else besides you and parents will care. This is normal for people who are applying to university. It won't apply to all of the applicants, of course, but by and large, one of the main reasons people do well enough in school to be able to apply to university is because they have a family that loves and supports them. You need to come up with some way your family, culture, or environment has shaped you in a way that is a bit (or better yet, a lot) different from all of the other candidates. Was there a particular lesson or value your parents taught you that you can describe through a narrative incident? What is your cultural background? How has it defined you? Where did you grow up? How did that affect you? Brainstorm and come up with a more original approach to this essay.

I wonder how many others will start their essays with something like this.

83.3%. It's a statistic, so it must be true.
Notoman 20 / 419  
Sep 7, 2009   #4
Just echoing Boxin's and Sean's advice here. If I were an admissions officer, I would think that your mom probably wrote the essay (or hired someone to do it for you). With all the help you received from your parents, you don't show an independence--with motivation or thought for that matter. I'd worry that you wouldn't succeed in college unless your parents moved into the dorms with you.

I apologize if I come across as harsh. Think about the purpose of a college application essay. The essay should showcase your writing ability AND convince the university that you will not only be a successful student, but contribute something to the university community.
pimpalicousbee - / 2  
Sep 8, 2009   #5
Talk about struggles your family and yourself have gone through to be able to accomplish this goal for you, how you have shown how you can do whatever it takes to make it, ect
tal105 7 / 130  
Sep 8, 2009   #6
and you begin with "my parents" so many times.

dont do this in the next essay.
tkkt1 11 / 47  
Sep 8, 2009   #7
How has your family history, culture or environment influenced who you are?

This essay needs work. A re-write perhaps. Make your response more interesting and original. Think of your family traditions or culture. Maybe you can elaborate on a specific time where your family helped you. Good luck on your re-write.
zouztingt 6 / 23  
Sep 9, 2009   #8
Your essay makes me feel like you're completely dependent on your parents. I don't think it's your point.
niraj /  
Sep 9, 2009   #9
YOU HAVE TO WRITE ABOUT YOUR FAMILY BUT YOU DON'T HAVE TO DISCUSS ABOUT YOUR CLASS ASSIGNMENT.
eternal flame 6 / 18  
Sep 9, 2009   #10
niraj, I agree that this essay needs not to be about class assignment. However, there is no need to shout here. It's kinda rude.
jgv115 4 / 25  
Sep 9, 2009   #11
I get nothing about family history or culture. Did your parents come from a country where it was hard to get a good education so they want you to do well?

Don't make it sound like you are dependent on your parents.


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