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transfer essay - "an experiment in realizing the good things"


okhvan 3 / 3  
Jan 8, 2011   #1
"Please provide a statement (250 words minimum) that addresses your reasons for transferring and the objectives you hope to achieve."

Shortly after the unveiling of the World Trade Center in the 1970's, a joke became popular among New Yorkers that likened the twin towers to boxes that the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building came wrapped in. Upon my arrival to New Jersey from Kazakhstan when I was eight years old, I was fascinated with these buildings and with the entire New York skyline. For me, fascination with these new sights was only ephemeral, however. As I got older, the skyline became integrated into the mundane part of my life, pointed out only on special occasions - to be shown off to visitors or to serve as a nice background for prom pictures. It was not until coming home for the first time after leaving to go to college in Boston that I learned to appreciate the fact that I can see the Empire State Building from my bedroom window. Being able to once again tell what color its floodlights were illuminated in every night during winter break felt like rummaging through old things and finding that forgotten childhood Christmas present once enjoyed so intensely, like wiping the dust off of an old photograph that captured a moment of forgotten joy. They do, after all, say that you don't know a good thing till it's gone. My first semester of college was an experiment in realizing the good things.

I shipped up to Boston last August after a long trial of negotiations with my father about money (it was not my first choice, but it was the institution that had provided me with the most financial aid) and assumed the role of a typical biology major, enrolled in chemistry and calculus courses that would lead me to the process of applying to medical schools and eventually finding a job that would provide me with a sure sense of stability. I spent roughly two weeks reading up on electron configuration and filling up pages upon pages of my Moleskine with chemical equations until I realized that the pre-med track was not for me. Taking a good look at the fellow chemistry classmates around me, I noticed a significant difference between them and myself. They lived and breathed chemistry while I stayed up late at night studying it simply because it had been drilled into my head by my parents and society to earn a degree in something practical, something steady. I could not approach the subject with the same passion as them, which ultimately led me to dropping it. It was not an easy decision to make and resulted in a temporary, yet nevertheless, terrible feeling of loss of direction in life. Looking back on it, however, it might have been the best decision I made all semester. I redirected focus to my other classes, especially Introduction to Architecture, which quickly became my favorite. Somewhere among the rubble of the Acropolis and within the intricate details of baroque churches, I had rediscovered my passion for art. I resumed a love affair that started in my childhood and lasted well into high school, until it was put on a back burner junior year, when I decided to take AP Biology instead of Studio Art in order to present myself as a more impressive candidate on college applications. Rediscovering my interest in art history and architecture felt right, like wiping the dust off of an old photograph or seeing the Empire State Building from my bedroom window once again. Realizing that I wanted to continue my studies of these subjects led me to make another important and even more difficult decision - the decision to transfer to a different college.

Attending Boston University was more of a sensible rather than personal choice for me, which in all honesty, I felt bitter about at first. Several months have passed since that decision has been made and I am a little bit older and perhaps a little bit wiser as well. I do not regret spending my first year at BU. I've made good friends, seen great exhibits at the Museum of Fine Arts, and taken fascinating classes with truly engaging professors. Most importantly, I've figured out what I want out of a college experience. I would like to attend a smaller school with a sense of a more close-knit community and a stronger advising system. I enjoyed living in the middle of a major city and I would like to transfer to a school that similarly takes advantage of its location, but also possesses a more established and centralized campus. Most importantly, in terms of academics, I would like to attend an institution with a strong foundation in the liberal arts, as well as a major in architecture, which BU unfortunately lacks. I am grateful for my time at BU, during which I've both rediscovered and learned a lot about myself. I now strongly believe that forgotten things, if truly significant, eventually find their way back to their rightful place, similar to the way the sight of the Empire State Building regained its importance to me upon coming home and the way my passion for art was strongly resurrected after taking just one class on the subject. Having learned this, I've begun to piece together the person that I would truly like to be and I hope to continue the ongoing process at an institution more suitable for me.
melissajoy 4 / 13  
Jan 8, 2011   #2
This is good content, but your essay is very scattered. You have a good draft to work with. I would establish more of a purpose in your introduction, and create more fluidity throughout your body. You jump around a lot. Maybe you could also incorporate your intro and thesis into your conclusion a litte more. I look forward to reading another draft, and i'm glad to read that you are following your passion. Good luck!

I was fascinated with these buildings, and with the entire New York skyline.

Fascination with new things is in most cases, however, only ephemeral.For me, the fascination with these new sights was only ephemeral

It was not an easy decision to make and resulted in a temporary, yet nevertheless, terrible feeling of loss of direction in life.

Several months have passed since that decision has been made, however , and I am a little bit older and perhaps a little bit wiser.I would like to think, as well.

Looking back on it, I do not regret spending my first year at BU.at all.

Most importantly, however, I've figured out what I do and do not want out offrom a college experience. You use the word 'however' a lot throughout your paper.
OP okhvan 3 / 3  
Jan 8, 2011   #3
Thanks so much! I'll have another draft soon and I'd appreciate it if you could take a look at that too.
james23 3 / 8  
Jan 8, 2011   #4
I agree with melissajoy. However, you didn't give enough reasons for transferring? What is world trade center have to do with you transferring. Why didn't mention courses that you took in high school, AP: I think you focus less on that, focus more on the college you are in.

I hope this help you, this are just my suggestion.
EF_Susan - / 2,364 12  
Jan 31, 2011   #5
I see 2 problems that can solve each other. The first problem is that the first paragraph is very long and makes the reader follow a long time before learning the message of the essay. The second problem is that you actually did not ever express the message of the essay in that long intro.

So, I think you should divide the first paragraph into 2 paragraphs, and the new first paragraph should end with a thesis statement that captures the meaning of th essay in a single sentence.

Let's simplify here:
I now strongly believe that f Forgotten things, if truly significant, eventually find their way back to their rightful places , similar to the way the sight of the Empire State Building regained its importance to me upon coming home and the way my passion for art was strongly resurrected after taking just one class on the subject.

At the end of that first paragraph, and also in the last paragraph, tell the reader your specific intention in a way that can be expressed in a sentence. You did a great job with the THEME, but you should also state your intention succinctly. :-)


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