The last thing I want to do right now is go through all of my files and purge all the unnecessary pieces of paper I have kept over the years. I am kind of a pack-rat when it comes to storing documents–which is why I am easily overwhelmed by the stacks of boxes I need to go through.
20 minutes into the process and I needed a break.
Fortunately for me, I came across my first college admissions essay. It is quite sweet, beginning with an introduction to myself, my age, and high school. Then I continue with: “Hobbies that I am associated with include reading, writing, drawing and working part time at a local clothing store. I am also involved in many activities both on and off campus.” Not bad for a high school senior. 😉 After listing my extracurriculars and leadership roles, I state, “I am able to take on the roles and responsibilities of a tutor, volunteer, teacher, planner, and counselor. At the same time, I have learned so much from my peers and have been greatly encouraged.”
The essay continues, “The present and future goals that I would like to achieve are many. I plan to become more involved in my community and on campus…Finally, I would like to discover what I should pursue as my future profession. By taking a variety of classes, increasing my knowledge and participating in different activities I hope to be able to find a major that is right for me.” The letter ends with: “I hope to gain lasting friendship and knowledge from my peers. I also desire to be encouraged and challenged…Due to such a vast variety of courses and majors I’m sure that I will find one that leads to the path that God has for me.”
Now, that year I did not attend that college though I was accepted. I attended a local community college that year and took some basic courses which opened my eyes to the field of Speech Communication. The following year, I applied to the college again and the rest is history.
Though a lot has changed in 11 years, I am grateful for the college experiences that I have had. I can honestly say that all I set out to accomplish in my admissions letter has come to fruition. I was involved on all of my campuses and in their respective communities. I took classes which fueled my interest for knowledge and directed me to my field of study. From each college, I gained lasting friendships which I still cherish to this day.
In the midst of rising college tuition, many students and their families are skeptic of its “value.” But I can honestly say that I did not go to college with the single purpose of earning a degree. I went to college with the plan to get involved, to give to the community, to learn from my peers and professors, and to discover my calling. College for me was not simply a business transaction, it was an enriching experience that helped pave the way for my future.
As I re-read the essay, I can clearly see that I was unknowingly equipped with basic skills needed to be a successful student. And a teacher. But perspective makes all the difference.
Today, may you be encouraged as you work hard to achieve your goals.
Life is expensive but the experiences and lessons are invaluable.