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Help!!! Harvard supplement essay wants to be read!!!

swimmer760swimmer760 Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
edited December 2010 in College Admissions
ok, I have just complete my Harvard supplement essay. I would like if someone would please read this and give me some feedback. The essay has no official prompt, but I have chosen to write about my frequent changes of address. Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thank You!
-S
TITLE: The Nearly Nomadic Child
Simply imagine I am a product sitting on the shelf of a warehouse awaiting shipment. I do indeed have a ‘Made-In’ label, and it reads: Mexican and American parts assembled in Japan. Then, on January 20, 1993, by midday, I am shipped and delivered to a young couple at Camp Pendleton Naval Hospital in California. Next, I am unpackaged and polished nicely to begin a whirlwind of adventures, and my assorted origins are merely a prelude of awaits me. From the day I was unpackaged, I have been shipped and borrowed between my owners; consequently, four time zones, three states, two continents, and one worldly experience later, I am well aware that at seventeen my journey is by no means whole.
At the age of five, I was shipped via express air shipping from California to the Eden-like islands of Hawaii. Being naïve and idyllic at five years old, the serenity of the Hawaiian Islands merely complemented the blissfulness of childhood. There seemed to be a never-ending frequenting of beaches and the pleasant warmth of the sun unyielding. I wholly remember days of playing outside, then quickly having to come inside as it rained with the Sun still gleaming for about fifteen minutes, and I was then off to another outdoors adventure. Also, though unbeknownst to me at the time, I visited landmark attractions such as Pearl Harbor and USS Arizona Memorial, and now I fully realize the magnitude of these places. For instance, my father and step-mother would drive with me in the car around Pearl Harbor en route to accomplish the family’s daily errands, but to me it felt like any old car ride. I will even admit that I did not even comprehend that Hawaii was a group of island at that age or, better yet, that I had flown nearly halfway across the Pacific Ocean. Nonetheless, my Hawaiian sojourn will forever be remembered as being utterly and phenomenally lovely.
Then, on the eve of second grade, I was transcontinentally shipped from California to Camp Lejune, North Carolina. It was here where I became aware of the influence the military has had on my life; my father was deployed for nearly half of the time that I lived there. I was also living on a military base, so I was able to intermingle with people living under similar situations; this was the epitome of my experience being a ‘military brat.’ Furthermore, living in North Carolina was a stark break with what I was used to living around in comparison to California and Hawaii. For example, there were pine trees, ticks, and deer that would invade our neighbor’s garden; for me, those things were vicariously experienced from the stories of others and movies. In addition, I vividly recall our neighbor, a Panamanian woman, yelling obscenities in Spanish at night to the deer’s and using her chancla as a makeshift boomerang, who would then describe the previous night’s events to my stepmother the following day. And to top it off, I saw snow for the first time. So, by the age of eight years old, I saw how different life can be from coast to coast of the United States alone, and just had an inkling there was so much more awaiting to be exposed.
Next, while on the brink of turning thirteen and entering teenagerdom, I was whisked away beyond the umbrella of the red, white, and blue on a thirteen hour transit to Madrid, Spain. My international living experience gave me more than I could have asked for. I actually lived in a foreign neighborhood, with such figures such as the former Spanish President living up the street with a national celebrity across the street; I was simply floored. Moreover, the international school I attended was amazing, and not just in terms of academics. I had friends from every continent, minus Antarctica of course, and each seemed to be from a heart of the world (Seoul, Amman, Tokyo, Moscow, Sydney, Athens, New York City, Rio de Janeiro, Quito, and Tripoli just to name a few). Therefore, since I am from tiny ole Fallbrook, California, I was viewed as being the ‘country bumpkin’ of the bunch. But, in all seriousness, the people I was surrounded by virtually brought the world to my finger tips. I could walk the halls and see a continuum of colors and possibly hear four different languages, yet I still felt like an intrinsic component to this intercontinental apparatus. For me, this move was also culturally enlightening. I visited such cities as Segovia and saw the ancient Roman aqueducts which are now surrounded by bustling cities, I got see live bullfighting on the Spanish television stations, and during spring break my family and I visited Lisbon, Portugal where I saw the stately summer castles of the former royal family and stood at the most Western point of continental Europe. Also, since I moved to Madrid because of my father’s employment at the American Embassy, there was a level of consciousness that required attention to detail. Invariably, this aided me in being aware of how I project myself and, while in Madrid, to portray the American people as best as can be; this was definitely an impetus for maturity. Eventually, however, this endeavor had the curtain drawn and I was returned to California.
Though I have lived in what I now know is an astonishing amount of places in my youth, Fallbrook, California is my nucleus. And it seems that gravity always manages to draw me back to this place. Admittedly, I get quite bothered at times with the lack of spontaneity in Fallbrook that Madrid had. Or, the lacking of beaches a few minutes from my front door like in Hawaii, and how many people cannot relate to my family situation as they did in North Carolina. But it is my hometown, where my roots are, and has added a dimension to me that no exotic location could add. Consequently, I may have ‘grazed’ many places, but the crossroads of my adventures have allowed me to have a familiar retreat. Therefore, I am forever indebted to my parents for the opportunities they have given me; my father has enabled me to become an aspiring citizen of the world, and my mother has given me stability. I believe that I have received the possible situation from the predicament that life has handed me. As a result, my frequent changing of address has allowed me to see and do things that for some remain, and may always remain, possibilities.
Finally, I have concluded that life has given me a flavorful sampler. Hence, I am by no means absolutely certain with what I want to do with the rest of my life, rather I am merely aware of what I do and do not care for. My parade of shipments and returns has helped me to become an open-minded and accepting person who has also been made in to an intellectual blank canvas. Now, once again, I am awaiting shipment, and it would be tantalizing to make plans to change my address to Cambridge, Massachusetts to attend Harvard University and continue expanding on who I am and who I am still yet to become.
Post edited by swimmer760 on

Replies to: Help!!! Harvard supplement essay wants to be read!!!

  • saf109saf109 Registered User Posts: 35 Junior Member
    Would you mind reading my Harvard supplemental essay? We could peer review each others essays.
  • saf109saf109 Registered User Posts: 35 Junior Member
    Sorry if it seems like blackmailing, but I really need some strong criticisms of my essay, I feel like it might be too cliche-ed.
  • swimmer760swimmer760 Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    sure, pm it to me, btw wat did you think of mine???
  • saf109saf109 Registered User Posts: 35 Junior Member
    This is really good! Great writing style, definitely creative, and fun to read! I wouldn't really change much, just a few suggestions:

    1. Instead of starting the essay with "imagine I am a....." go for "I am a product sitting on the shelf". It's much more interesting.
    2. Some wordy stuff felt a little overwhelming, like "unbeknown to me"
    3. The length sort of scared me, maybe you could cut down a little? like you could shorten your experience in Spain
    4. If I went for an analogy like that , then I would make it a little more evident and consistent throughout the essay. I guess the parts which naturally flowed out of you, I sort of forgot the analogy thing.

    I had a really hard time criticizing your essay, because I truly think it's amazing!! Good luck for Harvard!!
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