Cornell Admissions Essay
By unlocking the door to (name) past, one sees his thoughts and actions when they first took hold of his persona. This essay serves as a key to that door and to my current personality.
The first beloved books in my life were the Sesame Street Encyclopedia volumes. At three, I wasn't old enough to read them, but I always wanted to have them read to me. In fact, I memorized the ten volume set so when my parents would skip some pages I would ask them to read what they skipped. After learning to read on my own, my favorite book became the anatomy volume in the Charlie Brown Encyclopedia. Courtesy of a supermarket book offer, I was the only kindergartner who knew about fertilized egg cells. As I grew older, ...view middle of the document...
During that time period, I became so interested in astronomy through Odyssey Magazine that I sold holiday cards door-to-door in order to buy a telescope.
Reading also helped me in school. A little ingenuity didn't hurt, either. For example, as part of my third grade reading grade, I needed to do some independent reading. Every sixty pages in a book counted for one star of credit and in order to get an "A, " I needed fifteen stars. I was greedy and saw this as an opportunity to shine far above the rest of my classmates. Instead of reading many short books, I devoured 300-page sagas by Laura Ingalls Wilder. When everyone else got
eighteen stars, the little banana with my name on it had 45. This inner drive and competition still motivates my work today, but unfortunately, no one gives out stars anymore.
Despite this desire to do my best, I was quite normal, except for a slight perfectionist's twist to everything. I too owned a cabbage patch doll, but it was taken away because I cared for it excessively. On one Halloween, I dressed up as Dracula just like a dozen other kids, but I wanted my hair to look so realistic that it took a week to wash out all the gel I used. Finally, much like any other child, I fantasized about adventures, but I took fantasizing one step further. I recorded my make-believe adventures on tape so they could be critiqued afterward.
One of the few things I was not a perfectionist at was my writing. Due to a lack of self-confidence, I would plan papers well in advance but put them off until the very last minute. This habit continues today, accounting for the transition-lacking stream-of-consciousness style found in almost all my writing. I just hope it appeals to Cornell admissions officers.