Director of College Counseling
For many, the college essay is one of the most difficult parts of the application process. Its creation is evolutionary, beginning with a small incident or moment of personal growth and expanding into an incredible story. What started as an idea many months ago during their junior year burgeoned into colorful stories intended to communicate something meaningful and important about themselves; a chance to provide insight to admission counselors into who the students are beyond just test scores and grades. A few weeks ago, three intrepid seniors stood before the school community at morning reading and shared their college essays. It is a privilege to guide students in their search for stories to share. I am proud of the work our seniors have put forth and am delighted that some of them have chosen to share their essays with you.
“I stand, one hundred feet above a river in Baños, Ecuador, watching the shallow rapids below me snake between metamorphic boulders. Locals gather behind me, eager to see the nervous volunteer worker throw herself off of a bridge with nothing but an elastic cord fastened to her ankle. My toes dangle an inch beyond the iron railing I am tied to; it is the only thing that separates me from a deadly plunge. The employee begins to count down from three. I take a deep breath. Two. I clasp my hands together above my head. One. My feet leave solid ground.”
“A fourteen year old boy from Russia is walking on the streets of Boston. He is walking, and he can’t figure out what is wrong with him. Why are people that are walking by smiling at him or greeting him? He looks at his clothes, but he can’t figure out what caused that reaction. He walks to the nearest store with a big glass window, looks at himself – everything seems normal. What’s wrong with all those people? he asked himself. After I got to know another culture and tried to adapt to it, I felt fake. A feeling of loss for the most important values about life overtook me.”
“I felt a cold sweat over take me and a sudden realization hit me. Charm had been my horse since I was a little girl. She was the first horse I showed with, she was the first horse I truly connected with, and she was the first one I lost. My eighth grade year I got Berend and sort of lost my appreciation for Charm and now, as a junior in high school, for the first time I realized I had more or less ditched her. I almost never rode her after I went away to prep school and when I did they were quick little rides just so I stayed fit. I forgot about our relationship and now she was gone and I wasted so much time not appreciating her.”