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An essay about Pole Vaut-Rutger's essay

woogiez 1 / -  
Nov 18, 2009   #1
Prompt=Rutgers University is a vibrant community of people with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. How would you benefit from and contribute to such an environment? Consider variables such as your talents, travels, leadership activities, volunteer services, and cultural experiences.

Hi,I wrote this essay for English a while a go and wondered if it was an OK essay for the prompt above?

With my eyes shut, hurtling myself through the air, was one of the best experiences of my life. Soaring upward, my legs pointing towards the sky, a free flowing feeling gives me a natural high. A feeling that I will never forget! The jump is an elegant dance, of fierce beauty and pure strength required to compete. If one lacks this perfect balance of finesse and power, then they may not achieve the full effect of the jump.

I'm at my first meet where I have to pole vault with my team members. I'm feeling a bit nervous! Not really talking to anyone at this time. I'm just thinking ahead ,to what is to come. I'm planning and repeating my form, over and over in my head . Hoping I won't screw up too much. My fellow vaulters, the ones who taught me in such a short time, and I are getting warmed up for our event. During this warm-up, I feel the ever increasing butterflies. Making it hard to run a lap or even stretch. Everyone on my team is telling me to try my best and not die; I tell them, "I'll try."

As the pole vaulting begins,I wait for my turn. Pacing back and forth and watching the other athletes jump. When I hear my name called ,I sense a bad feeling, I grab my pole, and jokingly say,"What am I supposed to do again?" Everyone gives me the funniest look. I start to laugh, thinking that this is ridiculous. Me!? Vaulting! That's the craziest idea with only a week or so of practice. I feel like I'm going to make a fool of myself or worse. I was so scared, but no one could tell because I had the biggest smile on my face. That was just my cover.

While I'm standing on the runway, really getting pumped up for my jump and waiting for the vaulting official to say those magic words, "You're ready to start." The official says everything is ready and I have ninety seconds to attempt my jump. Without a moment's hesitation, I start running toward the pit and stare at the box that I had to plant my pole in, with which to launch myself in the air. If only it were that simple. My pole lands in the box and I hold on for dear life. I barley reach the bar and land on it at the same time. I land in the pit looking goofy and I jump off and jog back to where my coach was standing. He tells me I need more speed and that I needed to get mad.

The second attempt, I had to try harder than before. But I didn't have the form, so again I knocked the bar over. Feeling down and discouraged ,I went to my coach again. He tells me I needed to get my body up over the bar and control my form.

On the third attempt, I stand on the runway looking over at my fellow teammates. Their saying, "You can do it"and "You've practiced all week for this." With that inspiration, I ran as fast as I possibly could with no regards for my safety at all. Determined to conquer nine feet, I cleared it! I soar over the bar and land in the pit. I was in disbelief! I looked back to see everyone smiling and cheering. I walked over to my coach. He gave me a high five and he said that I had earned my first varsity point.

When I look back at this event, I find it funny how scared I actual was. I now see that I was afraid to try new things in general. I now understand that if you try hard enough, you can accomplishing anything. With every achieved goal, my confidence builds. When I'm pole vaulting, I find an inner peace and strength that I never knew existed. I plan to continue vaulting for as long as I possibly can. It is one of the most exhilarating experiences of my life and I've learned how to take control of my body and mind.
amaryrose 2 / 16  
Nov 19, 2009   #2
Ah! your first sentence doesn't have a subject! Do you mean "...the air, it was one..." ?

For a college essay, the style is a bit too choppy. It reads more like a story than anything, and doesn't talk at all about how you would contribute to Rutgers or how Rutgers will benefit you.

The idea is usuable, but you need to revise the fragments (like "A feeling that I will never forget") into real sentences and condense the narrative part (a lot). You have some unnecessary redundancy of ideas, and the prompt is not simply write about a situation. You need to relate it to the Rutgers, and right now all you have is a tacked on sort of conclusion that still doesn't really do that.
Vulpix - / 71  
Nov 19, 2009   #3
I agree with amaryrose: to submit this as a college essay, you will have to tie your experience into Rutgers or your plans for the future somehow in a more direct way, and you will have to condense the narrative "story" of your essay. And although fragments can be used to convey a particular sense of style, the way you're currently using them comes off more as messy and unnecessarily informal.

Examples of fragments that need to be modified:
"Not really talking to anyone at this time."
"Hoping I won't screw up too much."
"Making it hard to run a lap or even stretch."
"Pacing back and forth and watching the other athletes jump."

Also, there are severe inconsistencies in verb tense throughout your essay. For example, your first sentence is in past tense ("was one of the best experiences"), but your second sentence is in present tense ("gives me a natural high"). Even in your narrative section, you switch between past and present in a way that feels awkward and unnatural.

I do think that this essay has a lot of potential. I look forward to reading it again once you make some more revisions!

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