I'm looking to see if I'm going in the right direction here. Spelling and grammar issues are secondary to the message of the essay itself. Thanks in advance.
Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
I chose my own path
The most critical point in the formation of my identity thus far came from my shift in perspective of my father. I stopped seeing him as a role model to aspire to, but as a preview of a possible future for myself. I realized I didn't like what I saw, and chose to start down a different path that I decided on.
Both my father and I were born with a natural affinity for comprehending and retaining information, giving us both an academic edge. Instead of pushing the limits of his ability and striving to reach ever greater heights, my father was content in staying within his comfort zone, dropping out of college after only a couple of months. Without a college degree, my dad's career path was quite limited; eventually he got into the telephone company business where he has remained for years, the only recognition for his efforts being a promotion from labor to a desk job. Now, it wasn't until after my parents divorced that the implications of the choices my dad made occured to me. He had the potential to be debating string theory with some of the greatest minds of our time, but instead plans where to lay cable from a cubicle. It just seemed like such a waste, to have the chance to change the world and squander it in a life of mediocrity. That's when I realized what I wanted to strive for in life: I wanted to change the world. Now that may sound like the most cliche aspiration on the face of the planet, but to me it was the most novel and worthwhile goal that had ever been set. If my life could make even the tiniest impact on the world, it would validate my entire existence. It would mean I mattered, that I moved the world forward rather than simply be another support holding it place. At that moment, I knew nothing else would satisfy me; so I made a plan to make it happen. I already knew myself well enough to know that I could never work hard enough to achieve my goal if I chose a career I didn't find interesting, so the question was: what interests me the most? The answer was people. I was always curious as to why people do what they do. Why do some people stare straight into your eyes when talking while other avoid your gaze entirely? Why does that person enjoy horror stories when their twin only reads romances? People have always fascinated me, so why not learn all I can about them? Maybe I could figure something out that no one else had thought of before. The first step in all this would be to test my limits and expand my horizons by getting the best education I could manage. To that end, I am here now writing this essay in the hopes of being one step closer to realizing my ambitions.
Zachary, I totally agree with your statement that grammar problems are only secondary to the content and theme of the essay. This is very well proven by your own essay which not only came in under the maximum word count, but also responded to the essay prompt very well. I will admit that at first, I thought this was going to be a comparison of a violent father to a submissive son. That is how the hook affected me and it kept me reading until I discovered that it was nothing like what I first thought. Yet the comparison between an ambitious son and an easily satisfied father proved to be more interesting that I had originally envisioned. I stuck with your essay till the very end and learned all about you as a person, a son, a student, an achiever, and an incoming college freshman. Excellent work! With all of that said, do you want me to help you with the grammar errors or would you like to correct those yourself?
Thank you very much for your review; I'm glad to see it conveyed the message I had intended. If you'd like to help with the mechanics of the essay, I'd gladly welcome it. Thanks again for taking the time to read this over; you've already been a huge help.