Prompt: Rutgers University is a vibrant community of people with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. How would you benefit from and contribute to such an environment? Consider variables such as your talents, travels, leadership activities, volunteer services, and cultural experiences.
Ever since I have moved to New Jersey, diversity has played an instrumental role in my life. My school is a melting pot of different cultures, religions and socioeconomic conditions. I have friends that come from all different corners of the world. For example, my best friend, Danny, is from the Middle East and he lives in a very religious Muslim family. When we first met, I was very unaccustomed to his traditions and I thought that he was weird for his many Muslim customs such as only eating with his right hand and how he always shaved his armpits. It was especially uncomfortable initially going to his house because of how immensely different it was from my own home. Unlike my house, his house is strongly centered on religion with strict rules such as taking off shoes before entering the house and wiping feet on the carpet before stepping inside. Furthermore, we would often have trouble communicating and we would even sometimes argue over trivial subjects because of the different backgrounds that we came from. However, after almost 4 years of being friends, I have gradually come to learn to respect his religious customs and traditions. My exposure to the different heritages of my friends has slowly instilled in my core a strong sense of acceptance. Furthermore, it has taught me how to come to respect and acknowledge certain beliefs even if I am strongly against them as well as how to effectively communicate with people who come from different cultures.
Our school also has a variety of different clubs, such as SASSA, where different members of a cultural group come together and celebrate their unique heritage. I am personally part of the East Asian Association where we come together and try to bring our heritage to the school body through stage performances, demonstrations and outside school events. One of our major events that we hold each year is for Chinese New Year. Almost everybody in our entire school comes to participate or watch us perform on this very important day of the Chinese year. We have different shows such as the Chinese Yo Yo show, and friendly competitions such as who can get the most ice cubes with chopsticks. I personally am the organizer and performer for the most anticipated show at the Chinese New Year Event, the Dragon Dance where I help choreograph the show.
Rutgers would offer an extended version of the culturally diverse community that I currently live in. Rutgers would not only be able to expand my education, but also teach me the social skills necessary to thrive in today's diverse workplace. At such a diverse campus, I will have the opportunity to meet and befriend people from all corners from the world and learn to cooperate and work with a group of people with beliefs and traditions totally unlike mines. To Rutgers, I will bring with me a knowledge of diverse cultures as well as an attitude of acceptance of people with different beliefs and attitudes than mine that will hopefully rub off on others. Furthermore, I will also have my own unique heritage and traditions that I am eager to share with others at Rutgers. With the exposure to the diversity in the community that I live with currently as well as my own unique heritage, I possess certain qualities that will enable me not only to succeed but also contribute to Rutgers' diverse student body.
Any advice is greatly appreciated and thank you so much.