I will be applying for KGSP this year, undergraduate study.
My major of choice is physics.
This is my first draft, and I wonder if someone can help me to make improvements
Motivations with which you apply for this program- Family and Education background
- Significant experiences you have had; risks you have taken and achievements you have made, persons or events that have had a significant influence on you
- Extracurricular activities such as club activities, community service activities or work experiences
- If applicable, describe awards you have received, publications you have made, or skills you have acquired, etc."Pick yourself apart with tweezers, one atom at a time, you would produce a mound of fine atomic dust, none of which had ever been alive but all of which had once been you."
That was the sentence that stayed with me for weeks after I read Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything. The mound of atomic dust that had once been us had also been part of several stars and millions of organisms on its way to becoming us. But despite the fact that we share the same atoms that had once been a star and millions of organisms, each of us are different in many ways. The book also estimates that each human has about 2 billion atoms of Shakespeare hanging around inside--quite a comfort, as I try to write this essay in attempt to present at least one fragment of who I am.
I was raised with my grandparents, my sister and my mother all under one roof. My mother never owned a house, and when my father left by the time I was born--disappeared and completely uninvolved with my life later on--she simply came back to her parents. She was a cook at nearby boarding school. The money she earned barely meet paying the bills. But She was beyond grateful that the school offered a scholarship for me. We didn't have much but I always made sure to save some money I earned from tutoring my neighbor's kids reserved for books. And I could tell that my mother was relieved that I developed a love for reading. While other parents mandated homework time, mine never question my work ethic or wiretapped my assignment notebook. From the very beginning I was self-discipline enough to take control of my own life. And putting school first came naturally to me.
During my first year of Highschool I often got labelled an outcast. I found it hard to fit in and I had a hard time asking for help. But I put an end to that by challenging myself to reach out and became an active participant in my school community. Motivated by the idea that I needed help from the others in order to fulfill my dreams and I was keen on showing them that I have something to offer. But the true source of my motivation lied in deeper need to create positive change.
In my second year I was elected as the president of Student Council and was chosen to be a board member of my district's Rover Scout Council. I devoted part of my time in these organization. As a president of student council, one of my fondest achievement was probably how I helped re-organized my entire school library to better accommodate students' needs. The experience I acquired also helped me to discovered my strengths and to dispelled my own fears of failure. I also got the opportunity to learned diplomatic skills and became a much more confident individual and unafraid to stand up for what I believe in. In addition, I developed a keen sense of fairness and the ability to reach out to others who are feeling left out.
My mother never received formal education higher than Grade School and she had to let go of her dream of becoming a teacher. She once told me that it was something that's still haunting her. And when it was clear that we didn't have the money for me to pursue a higher education, she kept telling me time and time again that she'd find a way. That education is one of the most important things in life. Once it's yours. It could never be taken away.
Her sense of determination had taught me about perseverance. To pushed through during hard times. And that perseverance had become an integral part of who I am and how I face my problems. She made countless sacrifices to ensure I stayed in school. And I was aware of the struggles she faced on my behalf. When I finished Highschool I asked my mother to let me delayed my education and then I found a job as a tutor. I determined to help her sharing the burden of my education with me, if not taking it away completely. I said I'd find a way.
I convinced her that I would continue my education. Though I didn't tell her that I aspire to be a physicist, she once gave me a worried look because of that. I enjoy the logical aspect of physics and I found it very satisfying when all the separate pieces of problems created one simple theory. Thus, enabling me to embrace physics as more than simply a major or a degree, but as a personal passion.
Aside from having a number of very motivated and competitive schools. South Korea has culture that regard education with high priority, making it to be a country with arguably one of the most successful education systems. And that is a supportive environment in which I wish to thrive. It's also fascinating to see how South Korea holds its traditional values while maintaining its commitment to modernization.
I turned 23 years old by the time I sent this essay along with other documents. And the future of my education was still uncertain. I tried to push away the idea of giving up college. Sometimes I rest my uncertain head on my desk's solid surface in my room as I sat there reading my books or writing my essay--at times paralyzed by excitement that was stirred up by many new possibilities to come, at others crippled by fear. And then it occurred to me that my desk described my present life: an organized mess, a state of positive entropy and minimum energy. Math exercise and overdue library books overlap each other. But I convinced myself regardless of what fervor went on from time to time, there would eventually be a constant calm. And beneath my seemingly chaotic coat of papers, temporary things that defined my present life, my desk and myself remain still--solid, stable and evergreen, ready to be scratched into by experience.
Many hopeful beginnings end with disappointment and failure. I knew that as I grow up, experience may persuade me not to believe in fairy tale endings. But despite all that I still strive to carry a sense of optimism forward with me and to take full advantage of any chance provided to me.