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Every thing was gray in my eye, the sky, buildings, ground, people, and even buses. Is this America?

yr_0331 4 / 4  
Nov 23, 2006   #1
Any one can help me to revise this college essay? It is very important for me, your help will me invaluable for me!!
Thank you!


At the University of Maryland, we value a diverse community. How have your life experiences and background shaped you into an individual who will enrich the UM community? (2-3 page double space)

327 days ago, through 14 hours' 8579 miles flight, I finally stood in the land of United States. The flesh air in Washington D.C. woke me up from long time a journey's drowse. I looked around, drizzles made the sky over Dulles Airport hazy. Without exciting, I dragged my heavy suitcase passed through the airport big buildings, hallways, and parking lot. Every thing was gray in my eye, the sky, buildings, ground, people, and even buses. Is this America? Am I sitting on the long time flight and still dreaming? A Chinese family picked my families and me from the airport. I felt uncomfortable by looking at the sidewalk, no skyscrapers, no colorful neon lights, no huge advertisements. When the car was running in the endless highway I doubt that if I was sent to a never-land. Disappointed, that was my first impression of the new life in United States.

The following days did not become much better. The biggest problem I encountered was language barrier. I remembered one day I was walking with my dad on the street, when a lady said "hello" to us, my reaction was, said "hello" to her in CHINESE. Actually no one else in my family could speak English at that time, because of this, I became the one who negotiated with owners in order to rent an apartment, and dealt with monthly bills; who read any English contracts and mails, and even bargained in the supermarkets, although my English skills were still limited. Another problem I had to cope with was loneliness. I remembered the day was Christmas when I was in the air plane which departed from China, everyone else was going home and _______ with their families, but I had to leave my mum, leave my grandma, leave my friends, and leave the city I had been lived for seventeen years. The first few periods I always cried at night. Things that had happened in the past seventeen years always came to my mind, even in my dreams everyday were all about my hometown. There was not telephone or internet at home, I completely lost contact with them. Once a Chinese little boy gave me some Chinese songs, then I listened to them at dinner myself, I cried, how familiar those melodies were. I imaged that I was walking on the campus in my old school; I was hanging out with my friends at the table.____________________ ( any sentence can be filled here?) The transitions here in school were rough. I could not understand what my classmates were talking about or laughing at; every lunch I had to sit alone because I did not have friends to sit with. I totally isolated myself from the ______ (???). The relationships among members of my family became more and more complicated, my dad had bad mood and complain how _____ ( need an adj. describe bad) our lives were day and night since he could not find a job due to his language barrier. He had ever told me, my life brimmed with hardships everywhere, but never had such bitter like now. Later, he decided to bring me back to China. He said he could not offer a good living here for me. I came here for my future, for my dream, however, if I had been told to leave, which I should choose? I persist in my goal -- I want to study in America, I told my father. I tried to show him how things could change. Everything from laundry to bills became my responsibility, while I still kept my grades high. When the first time I got straight As on my report card and showed him, he smiled. He said I became a more independent young woman after I came to the United States. Now my dream is not for myself, but for my father. His struggles are my struggles. I should study harder and harder, I should go to college, to pursue further knowledge, to change our life, to let him be proud of me.

These hardships I experienced became invaluable to my life. I joined Howard County Health Expo few months ago. As an interpreter, I helped some elders who came from China to get to know about Howard County's healthy care system, and assisted them to finish health inspections. By talking to them, I knew that they had children and relatives here; they were still lonely, because they were new to this country. I can understand their feelings since I had experienced how hard the transitions were.

Not everyone is lucky enough to live in two different worlds. I am familiar with Chinese culture and able to adapt to America's life. Therefore, I can bring this advantage to UM since schools now have become more and more multicultural. Many students from other countries may face hardships in adjusting to the new environment when they first come, so I will be of assistance to them. UM is a diverse community, students here come from different places. I am planning to organize an America Help Union in the UM if I could be part of the school. The purpose of this union is to help those people who are new in this country. At the same time, I can foster understanding of cultural diversity within the UM community, making it not only a university, but also a world village.
EF_Team2 1 / 1,708  
Nov 24, 2006   #2

Your essay does an excellent job of conveying how challenging it is to be suddenly thrust into a brand new culture and feel very isolated. Your command of English is good for someone who has not been speaking and writing it for a long time. However, as with any language, grammar can be tricky, and there are also certain ways of expressing things that might be technically grammatically correct, yet not be the way a native English speaker would say it.

Some things to get you started with editing:

Don't start a sentence with a number: "Three hundred twenty-seven days ago ... "

In English, nouns generally require articles: "through a 14-hour, 8,579-mile flight"

"the land of the United States." - but that sounds like a foreigner talking. Just say, "the United States."

"Without exciting," - I'm not sure what you are trying to say here; just take this phrase out and it'll be fine.

"I dragged my heavy suitcase passed through " - take out "passed"

"I doubt that if I was sent to a never-land." - say, "I began to doubt I had been sent to a never-land."

I can't go through the entire essay for you and correct the whole thing, but I would strongly suggest that, if at all possible, you get an English-speaking friend to read it and make suggestions. If that's not possible, go through it sentence by sentence and double-check your grammar and sentence construction.

You have a great start here, just polish it up a little and it will shine!


EF_Team2 1 / 1,708  
Nov 25, 2006   #3

I would think that you are an extremely hard-working, intelligent, and exceptionally brave young person who would be an asset to the university!

While colleges these days certainly want students who are academically gifted, they also want students who will become successful in their fields and who demonstrate leadership abilities. Those who show the determination and initiative that you apparently have will be those who are noticed most by admissions committees.

I wish you the best in your educational pursuits!


Sarah, EssayForum.com
OP yr_0331 4 / 4  
Dec 5, 2006   #4
Thank you for your nicely help!!

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