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Educational Inequality Essay - UT Austin Essay E

texasbreed13 3 / 13 2  
Sep 23, 2014   #1
Hello, I'm looking to apply to UT and for essay E which says: Choose an issue of importance to you - the issue could be personal, school related, local, political, or international in scope - and write an essay in which you explain the significance of that issue to yourself, your family, your community, or your generation.

I just wrapped this essay up and the deadline is rapidly approaching. Therefore ANY comments are welcome but especially grammatical and sentence flow advice. Thanks so much!

Education is the most significant segment of humanity. Education insists on creating a better future for those that obtain it. Yet, educational inequality is a characteristic of society that has remained present throughout American history. This social defect is the difference between certain children being reared and cultivated in an environment that teaches them well, provides them with an abundance of resources and prepares each child for a post-secondary education; versus a student foster in an environment were funds are low and the overall outcome leads to an unscrupulous future for that child.

Subsequently, educational inequality stems from a deep-rooted issue in America - discrimination. It wasn't until the mid 60's that the law implemented properly educating children other than Caucasian. The desegregation of schools during the civil rights movement opened the doors for students of color to receive a proper education, however, the attempts were seemingly futile because colored students still didn't acquire the same things white students did. This is the premise of educational inequality historically and now the issue spans across all minorities. Race, gender and economic class play a heavy role in educational inequality today. On average in America a quarter of schools with the high percentage of Black and Latino students are not offered Algebra II, according to The Nation Newsletter. Comparatively, Black and Latino students account for 40 percent of enrollment at schools with gifted programs, but only 26 percent of students are represented in such programs, according to the same news print. This type of discrepancy happens all over America in different forms. Certain schools offering lower-level academics is incorporated due to an erroneous theory that African Americans as well as other minority groups do not and cannot learn at the rate in which Caucasians do. By allowing this type of disadvantage, students are enabled. As a result an African American or Latino child might inherit the mentality that he or she is unable to achieve the success that he or she can achieve. What can a child become when they have no faith in themselves? They essentially extract out what we give them, therefore I feel it is imperative to give them the best.

More specifically, within the African American community, an issue plaguing young students is the aspect of being in school in order to forward their academic success. Showing up to school is a large part of becoming educated. One cannot learn if they are not in the classroom. In regard to this, Black students are expelled at the three times the rate of white students according to The Nation Newsletter. Serving this injustice to black students causes problems greater than just within the school system. These black children will most likely be likely to get involved in gangs, drugs and violence outside of school because they will not be in the structured setting that school provides. This startling statistic also correlates with the higher rate of the imprisonment of African Americans (especially males) within the United States. Being an African American student and aspiring to be an African American educator, these statistics truly highlight to me the need for change. But I as an educator I know I will do my best to drive and rear all of my students towards the right direction.

Therefore, growing up as the daughter of an educator, I grew up with a mother who instilled within me the value of an education. We moved from a lower economic town in pursuit of higher educational values. The school I attended in the lower economic area was rundown and due to low funding a lot of the supplies, equipment and literature were passed down from other older schools and were not up to par. In contrast, I spent the rest of my schooling in a nicer suburban school in the Houston area. Even only being in elementary school I could see the difference from one school to another. Because of the area in which I lived in before, I received a lower level education than when I lived in a mostly affluent Caucasian community. In my hometown, I grew up around mostly African American and Latino children whereas, in Houston I grew up around predominantly Caucasian children. From each school I saw because of race, the difference in conduct, expectation and exploitation. Children in my hometown mostly came from working single-parent households, below or at the poverty line. Therefore, their economic class affected the way they were schooled.

I understand that there are always going to be discrepancies amongst us in this world; however, I also believe that children are societies most precious asset. Our youth essentially cultivate future leaders, politician, scientist - all the people society needs to grow and learn. Because I want to pursue becoming an educator and understand what a blessing it was for my parents to make the sacrifice for me to attend a better school system, educational inequality greatly concerns me. Working in a lower income school has also shed light on this problem America faces. I worked with children of mostly the Hispanic race and I could see that because of language barriers and cultural disparities they faced, I saw how they were succumb to educational inequality. Because school zoning is often determined by where you lived, these students attended schools in subordinate areas of town. Their schools were not as new or nice and neither were the learning material in which they were given. But I believe that neither race nor wealth should determine a child's education. I want to see ever child be successfully educated; no matter the color of their skin, how much their parents make for a living or where they come from. America is a melting pot in which we all blend and education is the key to life, thus why no student should be denied an exemplary one.

vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Sep 23, 2014   #2
Your essay, while based on a very solid and relevant topic, just has a disconnected feel to it. It is almost as if you took a textbook source and decided to base your whole essay around that. I did not get any sense of your connection to the topic you chose to discuss on a personal level. It is superficial in the sense that you cite too much of other people's point of view, textbook data, and other people's experiences but not the main reason why you feel that this is something close to your heart and of great importance to you.

Throughout the essay you constantly speak of how lucky you are to have received this and that and you realized this and that but you never once said you wanted to do something about it and how you would do it. That would show the importance of the topic you are discussing to you. Perhaps it is because you chose to speak of educational inequality when you did not actually experience it. You said so yourself, you went to one of the best schools in the state. You never had to actually spend a year or two in the public educational system that those underprivileged kids had to attend. So you are talking about everything from a distanced point of view. This is why your essay lacks a personal connection to the topic. The content of the essay is much too wordy but does not really deliver the kind of impact that it should. You speak about your mother being an educator but you did not tell us if you learned anything about educational inequality from her.

What I am trying to tell you is this. You need to write the essay based upon personal experience. Your advocacy in life is what is important to you. What is that advocacy? Reflect upon your volunteer activities or any other extra curricular stuff that you do that is not related to school work but is very important to you. Once you figure out what that is and you write it down, you will then be able to create an essay that reflects your thoughts on a topic that is truly important to you. Only then will you be able to write about a topic that is of great importance to you, your family, your community, or your generation.

I know that this is not the advice that you want to hear but I wanted to tell you about it just in case you are open to considering changing the topic of your essay. It's just a suggestion, the final decision is of course, yours to make :-)
OP texasbreed13 3 / 13 2  
Sep 23, 2014   #3
Yeah thanks for your feedback. I see all of your points. I just don't really have time to change my topic and I don't really want to because even though I didn't make it sound like it educational inequality is important to me and I don't know what else to talk about but maybe I should talk about working in poorer schools which I have. I just have some tweaking to do and thanks so much for your advice :)
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Oct 1, 2014   #4
You sound like you are trying to lecture the admission officer rather than offering him or her an insight into why educational inequality is an important issue to you. Here is what I suggest, integrate this information into your plans for the future. Discuss how you plan to make waves and institute changes in education at the level where you can in order to lay the foundation for educational equality. That way you can use most of the important information above in a less lecturing manner and in the process, present reasons that the issue is important to you while selling the reader on the idea that you have real plans that you wish to see become a reality in order to solve the problem.

Overall though, the essay is quite strong and shows that you are truly connected and concerned about the issue. We just need to make you sound less lecturing and more pro-active. It would help if you could mention some volunteer activities that you currently engage in that try to address the problem of educational inequality.

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