6 hours to go....UC Essay help needed urgently!!

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Discus: College Admissions: 2002 - 2003 Archive: November 2003 Archive: 6 hours to go....UC Essay help needed urgently!!
By Saibod1 (Saibod1) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 02:38 pm: Edit

Ok here are all the essays I have written for the UCs...please critique!

1) How have you taken advantage of the educational opportunities you have had to prepare for college?

There are times when I hear from friends back in the San Rafael, CA, telling me about how theyíre having a great time in their AP classes or how their teachers actually know their studentís names. These are the luxuries I feel deprived of, living in India.

However, although I may have missed out on a well rounded education available in the U.S., I have been fortunate enough to receive an education based on deep engineering principles.

Growing up around engineers has been a huge factor which has enticed me in pursuing a major in engineering. Through my father, who is a successful Computer Engineer, I have been introduced to the functioning and structure of computers systems and hardware at a very early age, and through my uncle, who is an electrical engineer who runs his own factory, I have learnt about household safety devices like electrical and mechanical circuit breakers. This gave me my first true taste of raw engineering.

I have also made good use of whatever academic opportunities I have had available to me in preparation for college, like developing a keen interest in Practical Physics and Chemistry.

Through grades 9 and 10, Physics had always remained a mystery to me; memorizing formulas from a text book and applying them in real life never seemed too difficult a task. But on joining Little Flower Junior College, I had the opportunity to work in a real laboratory. With the help of an understanding and experienced professor, Mr. Thomas Reddy, I learnt about Physical Principles I had never applied before like verifying Boyleís Law by Capillary Rise method, understanding the use of the Tangent Galvanometer in measuring the horizontal component of the earthís magnetic field or even simple procedures like applying the Principle of the Screw using apparatus like the Spherometer and the Screw Gauge. I have even compiled a record of all the experiments I have conducted.

I have also made use of the chemistry laboratory facilities at my school. I have conducted fourteen salt analysis tests independently and have also performed titrations with various combinations of acids and bases in varying molar concentrations, studying the behavior of various acid base indicators like phenolphthalein and methyl orange and familiarizing myself with their Ph ranges. This experience has enriched my understanding of chemical behavior, laboratory procedures and safety measures.

On a personal front, I am a big car freak, following the developments and latest technology used in cars today like ABS and Traction Control very keenly. I am also very interested in the design of the modern car, trying my hand out myself in designing the prefect lineup of automobiles to be sent to various manufacturers like Hyundai India, Honda and The Ford Motor Company. A future involving the design of cars would fulfill the dreams Iíve had ever since I was in kindergarten.

This year, a couple of friends and I are sourcing a 100cc engine from a scooter in the quest to build our own regulation go-kart. This will require a proper understanding of mechanical principles like chassis execution, turning radius limitations, weight distribution, engine compatibility and engine management. I, being the key designer of the chassis will benefit greatly on developing this project.

Although moving to India as an eleven year old may have closed more windows of opportunity than it has opened, I have utilized all the opportunities available to me to strengthen my skills in preparation to pursue an engineering degree at the University of California and have created a few opportunities myself. I value the education I have received here in India and am sure it has made me better prepared for college.

2) Tell us about a talent, experience, contribution or personal quality you will bring to the University of California.

Living in India, I have witnessed poverty of disturbing proportions; orphans and beggars lining the streets with their skins pierced by bones have become a common sight for me. I always keep these sights in my mind when I volunteer at the Alambana Trust.

When I started volunteering last year, I initially signed up as an English teacher for school dropouts of economically backward backgrounds. But what I saw lacking was that boost in morale in these children, that vital factor which was necessary for them to learn anything that they were being taught. It wasnít English that would break these children free from the shackles of poverty, it was confidence, a quality that I began to focus on greatly from then on. Today, I teach confidence building skills to these children, using techniques that have helped me personally whenever I was down. By devising routine activities such as debates on social crimes affecting their lives such as the caste system, female infanticide and the evil dowry custom, each kid gets the opportunity to be heard and voice his opinions irrespective of what other people think about his English. And as things have turned out, my engrossment in volunteer work has led me to take a gap year primarily focusing on volunteer work.

It is the quality that I possess to understand and relate to the problems faced by the less fortunate that I will contribute to the University of California and to the whole world.

3) Is there anything you would like us to know about you or your academic record that you have not had the opportunity to describe elsewhere in this application?

Splitting headaches, the inability to stay awake for 3 hours on end, the lack of consciousness for 5 minutes in the month of September and an overdose of a powerful drug by a reputed doctor; these are the highlights of my tenth grade.

My ordeal with hypothyroidism started when I was advised by a relative to visit a specialist when my neck had bulged to unusual proportions in August, 2001. It was a condition that I thought would be manageable, but after falling flat on my face in my bedroom, I realized that I was in for possibly the biggest challenge of my life. As my thyroid gland started to fail me, I felt things slip away from my grasp. I was no longer the energetic and enthused person I was, but a person running on 100 mg of artificial hormones per day. My grades had hit an all time low as I just didnít have enough energy to last me a day of enervating academia. But through all the times of giddiness and dosage variations, restrictions from my favorite sports and even running, I somehow managed to pull through with grades which even though arenít stellar, are the ones of which I'm most proud.

I still have those off-days when I am nowhere near my 100 percent, but Iíve managed to return to my peak performance academically, and itís going to take more than a bulge in my neck to pull me down.

Well...there they are...please give your advice!

By Anin (Anin) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 03:07 pm: Edit

It sounds like you have a lot going for you, but don't hold your breath- California gives tons of advantage to California students first, followed by US students, then international students. The main consideration they give to Int. students is scores and grades. I made corrections to your essay and emailed it to you, consider them if you wish- there is an asterisk by every change.

By Ickyfoo (Ickyfoo) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 03:48 pm: Edit

6 hours to what?

By Interested123 (Interested123) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 07:19 pm: Edit

Aren't UC Applications due on the 30th?

By Becks777 (Becks777) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 07:42 pm: Edit

what are your stats sai?

By Saibod1 (Saibod1) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 10:14 pm: Edit

hey...thanks for your help Anin. I am a California resident even though I'm living in India. I'm a U.S. national and I moved to India in 1996; I hear that since my dad still pays taxes in california, we are still considered residents.

Becks777, my stats are
SAT1 1400(740M, 660V)
SATII : Writing -730, Math2c- 750, Chemistry- 750
grades- dont know how the gpa thing works..

By Aerin04 (Aerin04) on Wednesday, November 26, 2003 - 11:45 pm: Edit

San Rafael?! I'm from Novato! :)

Good luck with your app. Your essays are really great and you come off as a consciencious, intelligent, passionate person - you don't need to change anything in my opinion.

By Saibod1 (Saibod1) on Thursday, November 27, 2003 - 02:29 am: Edit

hey Aerin, thanks for your help. I miss San Rafael alot. I used to live in Marinwood, near Lucas Valley!

By Giraffe (Giraffe) on Thursday, November 27, 2003 - 02:35 am: Edit

I live in Marinwood. It sucks. The only thing good going on here is I get to go to Terra Linda High School, and beat loser schools in sports (e.g. San Rafael High, Novato High). Did you go to Miller Creek? Or Mary E. Silveira Even?

By Saibod1 (Saibod1) on Thursday, November 27, 2003 - 03:08 am: Edit

Hey...I went to Mary E. Silveira! My fifth grade teacher was Mr. Lakin and my fourth grade one was Mr. Ito...whats your name?

By Giraffe (Giraffe) on Thursday, November 27, 2003 - 03:39 am: Edit

Haha I had them too. I'm Paul Chun. Mr. Lakin stopped teaching to do music (I think), Mr. Ito is still an old, aggressive Japanese man. What year did you graduate? I was 1997. I won the spelling bee in fourth grade when I had Mr. Ito. Who do you keep in touch with? Maybe I'll know them too ;).


P.S. Aerin, are you Aerin Lee?

By Saibod1 (Saibod1) on Thursday, November 27, 2003 - 03:55 am: Edit

I graduated in 1996, I lost a year because of the moving to India ordeal..Havent really been in touch with anybody...I dont seem to remember you though...I was in one of those spelling bees too I think. Haha

By Aerin04 (Aerin04) on Thursday, November 27, 2003 - 04:09 pm: Edit

Oh Giraffe... you make me laugh!

"The only thing good going on here is I get to go to Terra Linda High School, and beat loser schools in sports (e.g. San Rafael High, Novato High)."

Have you checked the football stats recently because as far as i know novato has killed you guys every game these last three years. :)

p.s. no i'm not aerin lee.
p.p.s. novato high? loser school? haha! yeah right. we're f**king awesome!

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