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UC Personal Statement! Prompt 1- Me as an unique cultural mixture Prompt 2- What I learned in Mexico


rh346 1 / 1  
Nov 24, 2015   #1
Hi, I am applying to UC Berkeley and UC San Diego.
I wrote 2 required essays and also the optional one , but I do not have anyone who can revise my work :(
Any comments/criticism would be lovely!! Thank you for your time so much.

Describe the world you come from - for example, your family, community or school - and tell us how your world has shaped your dreams and aspirations.

There is something unique in communities that I belong to, as I consider myself in member of two communities. The city that I live in and school that I attend are favorite places for Koreans. One can observe a significant number of Korean students from simply standing on the second floor of my school. They are apt to form groups and distance themselves from the Mexican community, partly because their parents are sojourning employees so they will go back to Korea in 3 years, and secondly because the cultural difference is noteworthy.

Having spent 14 years in Korea, I also struggled to adapt in a new environment and I maintained good relationship with other Koreans even though I couldn't relate with them. I preferred to embrace a different culture rather than avoiding the challenge of integration. However, attempts do not always lead to desirable outcomes. For a typical middle class guy, the fancy lifestyle of the richest students in the country seemed to be a mere mirage. I found myself without any emotional haven, struggling with my identity in the middle of two cultures.

The turning point of this struggle was when my father brought me to his workplace on a Saturday afternoon. It was a gigantic factory producing car engine parts. The clicking sound of machines and thunderous voice of my father operating factory created uncanny harmony that resonated in my mind. I was surprised by combinations of intriguing machineries working in order to achieve one goal. At this moment, I was imagining myself as a prospect engineer who conducts symphonies of complex machineries. Also the exquisiteness of the process behind a quintessential product made me to think about myself: "This is why I am here! I am in the process of transforming me to a competitive individual!" I thought I was in the hand of an artisan, who were scarping me distinctively to other products. In fact, it was true. I had a firm mathematical base acquired from Korea which enabled me to be the one who had highest GPA in the school after mastering both English and Spanish in a short period of time.

I felt that I do not need to be situated at one particular community. I was in the dissecting section of cultural Ben-diagram; I could take strong points from both communities. I felt special as I was different, and figured out being unique is nothing bad, if I am ready to embrace others. This was the end of my struggle. I was proud of myself not to be drifted to middle of nowhere, but, in the contrary, I became a person who could be the best one everywhere, adapting to new environment with the firm dream.

Tell us about a personal quality, talent, accomplishment, contribution or experience that is important to you. What about this quality or accomplishment makes you proud, and how does it relate to the person you are?

What I learned from passionate and colorful culture of Latin America is perseverance and boldness to pursue the righteousness. Considering something different not as something wrong, I not only learned how to embrace unique things, but also tried to fight against bad practices behind the name of the culture. What I have heard from others in Mexico is "It has been always like this." Car mechanics used to say this phrase when they could not get their work done on time, schoolmates used to say so when something goes wrong and everyone used to say so when they wanted to avoid their responsibilities. Tired of hearing comments like that, I studied more and more believing that language was solute which would be combined with a very special solvent, myself, creating solution named communication.

During this process, I figured out joy of learning as it got easier each time to express myself. Like the beauty of the butterfly spent long time in the chrysalis, I was enlightened by jubilation at communicating that I had forgotten. Then, one thing came to my mind: I wanted to articulate my opinions and ideas more by entering student council. I wanted to change many things from not only school but also people in my community. However, I knew I couldn't join the student council at that moment. What could I do in a place where the purpose is arguing unless I was proficient Spanish speaker? I oppressed my desire to stand out and remained seated in front of my desk.

After three years, I accomplished to enter the student council. I was so delighted to be in a group of school leaders. But, the reality was harsh for me. Only few were doing their part and majority was doing nothing. I was disappointed how the council was run, and I made my first move in the Halloween event. We were supposed to sell hot chocolate and Mexican traditional bread but only 3 of members including me were participating. I thought that was the perfect moment to do something to change student council. I called member for extra informal session without high school principal and gave feedback about the Halloween event telling them we have to take our responsibilities. At that moment, I heard the phrase that I hated the most again; a junior told me that only few participate every year. Unlike what she wanted (probably finishing the session), I was motivated more to continue fighting for what is right. Next day, in the formal student council session, I started to talk about what was happening to us and point out the indifference that we had. Then, my will to pursue righteousness was recognized by the principal and many members. The active discussion began, and we spent 2 hours what members were supposed to do and what we were aiming for: to change high school. I proposed that we could make a list of what we did in each event, so that we could motivate each other and objectively see who was doing which things. And it worked! I became the one who is trusted the most not only in the council but also by my friends after seeing me trying to cope adversities at the front line.
irhame 52 / 50 25  
Nov 25, 2015   #2
During this process, I figured out joy of learning assince it got easier each time to express myself. What is more, like the beauty of the butterfly ...

Then, one thing came to my mindthat strikes in my mind : I wanted to articulate ...
I wanted to change many thingsobjects from not only school but ...
OP rh346 1 / 1  
Nov 27, 2015   #3
Thanks! I will see yours as well
justivy03 - / 2,366 607  
Nov 27, 2015   #4
Hi Ko, I'd like to share my thoughts on your essay, first essay first.

Describe the world you come from - for example, your family, community or school - and tell us how your world has shaped your dreams and aspirations.

- I belong to, as I consider myself ina member of two communities.
- The city that I live in and school that I attend to are favorite places for Koreans.

- I felt special asknow I was different,
- and I figured out being unique is nothing bad,
- not to be drifted to the middle of nowhere, but, in the contrary,
- adapting to new environment with thea firm dream.

Ko, as you can see there's only a few remarks that I made on your essay, however this doesn't mean that your essay is strong,

I suggest that you write a few more sentences on your dreams and aspirations rather than dedicating almost the entire essay writing about your background and your family, talk about your future too, this is also part of the essay too.


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