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Stanford Supplement #1: Intellectual Vitality (Human Trafficking)

ashley118 1 / -  
Dec 21, 2009   #1
I don't know whether I really answered the prompt. Any feedback is greatly appreciated!

Prompt: Stanford students are widely known to possess a sense of intellectual vitality. Tell us about an idea or an experience you have had that you find intellectually engaging.

I sat in my seat unable to believe what I was hearing. There I was, being exposed to the truth about human trafficking. At the time, I didn't know that any form of modern day slavery still existed. This idea totally blew my mind. The facts and figures alone made my head spin. A child is sold into slavery every two minutes. This 32 billion dollar industry is the second most lucrative crime in the world. The most shocking fact I learned was that Portland, Oregon, where I currently reside, is the second largest city in the United States for human trafficking. This experience made me realize that the perfectly safe bubble my mother raised me in is not a true depiction of society. Once the bubble was popped, I sought to learn more and devoured any information I could on human trafficking.

A couple months ago, I had the privilege of meeting a lady who had been trafficked. She described the hardships she had endured, and soon enough I was crying along with her. I envisioned the brothels where people trafficked were kept, girls passed out on dirty mattresses from drugs their "owner" injected, and hopelessness evading the scene. As I looked at the quiet woman sitting in front of me, it hit me at that moment how real human trafficking is. It's more than statistics. It's affecting the lives of innocent victims each and every day. I hear about so many horrific crimes occurring in today's society, but human trafficking has touched me like no other crime has. Although I cannot directly assist those who make my heart ache, I've learned over the past two years that the best way to support this cause is to raise awareness.

I take part in this process by inviting guest speakers to speak in the community, from my school to churches to local events. Almost everyone is just as shocked as I was when I first learned about human trafficking. I want people to feel the burning passion I first did to take the initiative and make a difference. On top of raising awareness, I hold fund raisers to help provide funds to organizations that work to abolish human trafficking. It is through these means that I have experienced intellectual vitality.
hehalter 3 / 9  
Dec 21, 2009   #2
The topic is really interesting and shocking and your writing is good. However I would recommend speaking more to how you raise awareness in your community to show activism. More about you and less about the issue.

Small things:
-Strike the first two sentences. Your reader knows what intellectual vitality is. Maybe to grab your reader start with you at the conference hearing about human trafficking for the first time. For example, "I sat in my seat unable to hear what I was believing..."

-The most shocking fact I learned that day was that Portland, Oregon, where I currently reside, is the second largest city in the United States for human trafficking. It was completely appalling to know that the city I grew up in is home to such a horrible crime. This part is repetitive. Either get rid of your revise.

hope this helps, please look at my threads too!
anhammond 3 / 28  
Dec 21, 2009   #3
this is a really good topic but maybe you should focus more on how the topic affects you and your thought process

im applying to stanford too and this question really hit me as stanford's way of of looking into the way we think about certain issues, not necessarily the issues themselves.

i agree with hehalter, your writing is really good and effective.

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