My English teacher has done most of the grammar and hard work, so all there is left is:
-pick out any more mistakes(shouldn't be many)
-see if there is anything unclear or not making sense
-give me comments on it, such as how strong this essay is, how much will the college like it, does it answer the prompt, or is it cliche or unique
-HOW IS IT COMPARE WITH OTHER STUDENTS? I am scared that my essay is bad and cannot match up with my competitors'...
It is for UCs, so the prompts are:
Essay # 1: 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.
When I stumbled into the hospital room, my worst fear was confirmed by the gravity in the ward. There, I found all my relatives, aunts, uncles, and grandparents, standing or sitting beside my mother, who seemed even more atrophied than she was this morning. The doctor, looking at the monitors, said solemnly, "She doesn't have much time left." With that, the woeful ambiance reached its peak, and I began to cry. "Do not worry about me, mom, I will be a good kid," I said in an unclear voice. Then, a teardrop slid slowly down her right cheek, and her eyes finally lost their remaining life force.
Beep, beep, beeeee...In that moment of ghastly silence, I saw all the fluctuating lines on the electrocardiogram cease their movement and drop dead into straight lines. "I am sorry," said the doctor, "she has left us." At that time, I did not understand the full meaning and impact of those words or how such a short phrase could so dramatically influence my life.
Before moving to the United States, I lived in a less fortunate family than most of my peers. My dad, overwhelmed by this incident, spent most of his time working in office or in his room, trying to make himself oblivious to what had happened. Therefore, I grew up as a child who was more independent and responsible. Everyday when I got back from prep school, dishes bought from some restaurant, such as broccoli beef and fried tofu, would be on the kitchen table, but dad would have gone back to work already. Because of Father's busy schedule, I rarely had a chance to share with him about what happened at school, how I got another A on the test, and how much I liked dodge ball. As a fourth grader, I could not help but wonder, "Why don't I have a mom who cooks and helps me with my homework, or just someone who will listen to my feelings?"
From this tragic event, I gained profound insights. First, I set up my life time goal. As I felt the impact of my mother's loss, I began to dream of becoming a doctor. I longed to save the lives of people who suffered from fighting cancer and to prevent any child from seeing his or her loved one dying from the disease. I also learned to actively take chances whenever possible: I could not afford to lose anyone or anything that was precious to me again. In essence, I wanted to use every moment available to its fullest, lest that like the time I had with my mother, I will not be able to have the opportunities again.
Four years after that turning point, my family immigrated to America to receive my grandparents' support. Although in this unfamiliar environment I faced a multitude of obstacles, I never wavered from my goal.
Becoming part of my grandpa's big family truly tested me in many ways. Living with ten people-my aunt, uncle's family, my family, and grandparents-meant shouldering more responsibilities. I needed to pay close attention to the two elders as well as look after the three young ones, my little brother and two cousins. Sometimes, when everyone was busy, I even had to prepare dinner. From that demanding situation, I was trained to be self-disciplined and self-motivated, a combination which resulted in my most valuable personal characteristic: being self-challenging.
Living under the expectation of many, I demanded that I be the cream of the crop in my classes. Whenever I studied late at night, I always thought about how precious this time for myself was because I might not have it tomorrow since I needed to babysit my cousins or take Grandpa to the hospital.
This is the world I come from-a world that shaped my dream through hardships and motivated me through challenges-a world in which every struggle encountered contributes to the formation of a professional doctor. And In the end, this world rife with arduousness turned out to be more of a fortune than a burden.
Essay # 2: 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?
Lying on a hospital gurney, Mom was pushed through an aisle where doctors and nurses stood with their heads down. After months of taking radioactive treatments, intravenous drips, pills, eating a controlled diet, and suffering, she now lies still, having enjoyed only thirty seven years of life.
From this last memory of my mother, I witnessed the transient essence of life. Moreover, I learned the lesson that I should not only take chances, but also look for more of them. Frequently developing this idea and practicing it, I become a person who indefatigably challenges himself.
For instance, when I came to the United States, my foremost difficulty was language. At first, "I don't know" was the standard answer to almost all questions. However, after memorizing fifty vocabulary words each day, I soon overcame communication problems. At about the time I could recite Dr. King's "I Have a Dream" speech easily, I progressed beyond the English Learner Program, capable of performing in school at the same level as native speakers.
Wishing to become a more competitive student, I joined the band. Although I knew nothing about playing and marching, I took on the challenge. Since I did not know how to side read, I had to practice the same measure over and over. I practiced from eight to twelve in the morning playing "Earth, Wind, and Fire" and from one to five in the afternoon marching the show. Wanting to use every ounce of my spare time, I even used water breaks to ask section leaders about measures that were giving me trouble. That was how I spent the summer of my sophomore year, playing under the maple trees for four hours and sweating in the dusty field for another four hours. In only four months, I was able to participate in the field show just like other band members.
Looking back, I feel extremely proud about my growth and accomplishments in only four and half years since my immigration. My evolution into someone who is self-challenging helped me overcome many of the obstacles I have faced. It has been the propulsive that granted me my proud high school records, and it will continue to be the driving force in college, my future vocation, and the rest of my life.