College Application Essay Trouble

by Joshua Brincklow
(Dunedin, FL, USA)

College Application Essay Trouble


Prompt: In the space provided, please write a concise narrative in which you describe a meaningful event, experience or accomplishment in your life and how it will affect your college experience or your contribution to the UF campus community. You may want to reflect on your ideas about student responsibility, academic integrity, campus citizenship or a call to service. (400-500 words)
As a Boy Scout, our Scoutmaster taught me to take on challenges and reach our goals. My great challenge was the Eagle Scout Project. At the time I was fifteen and had been a Life Scout for a year-and-a-half; Eagle Scout was the next step.
The first step was calling the Parks Superintendent, Art Finn. ?I?ve got to create a list of projects first, but call back in a month and I?ll have something for you,? he said. This happened two more times, so I had to be patient and trust I would be able to begin a project. We were finally able to meet and discuss the available projects in late-October. I decided on renovating a small park, racked with vandalism and erosion. When I chose my project, I had to fill out all of the preliminary paperwork for it. ?Describe all details of your project, including the present condition, the method, materials to be used, project helpers?? It was harder than many job applications.
Another challenge was with flexibility. The project kept changing, sometimes because Art Finn or I suggested new ideas, but usually because of budget constraints. The project date was changed from March 24th to May 9th. I felt a lot of frustration, but I had to keep calm if I ever wanted to finish.
On the day of the project, I woke up at 5:45am. My Dad and I picked up ice and fresh bagels we needed for the breakfast. I was dressed in my Class A uniform, and everything was ready. The arrival time was set for 8am. Volunteers started coming, a few at first, then more and more around 8:30. But Art Finn hadn?t come yet. 9am was approaching, and some asked if we were going to get started. I had heard of Scouts who didn?t have the project representative show up on the day of the project, and I hoped I wouldn?t have the same misfortune.
But he came. He brought all of the materials we would need to finish the project, from the cement to the chainsaw, and transporting all of it had taken time. All thirty-four volunteers got to work, and we were able to finish the project by 2pm. The benches were installed, the kayak ramp was rebuilt, and all of the mulch was spread. Very little could?ve been done to make this project better.
All of my memories of the project are now kept together in a large box, which I always enjoy looking through to remember what I?ve accomplished. The project has changed me in so many ways. I am now outgoing, organized, and assertive; my leadership with Scouting has carried on to other facets of my life, in my yearbook club and the National English Honor Society. I am going to take my leadership skills on to college, in clubs and in my education. If I am accepted into UF, I will create memories that I will always want to look back on, too.

I am trying to make my paper more interesting to the admissions department, instead of giving a laundry list. Instead of giving a chronological description of what I did, I want to describe how I felt during the conflict and success.

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Editor:

I agree with you. I think it would be a good idea to omit the step-by-step details and chronology of your activities.

Describe your project, emphasize the benefits you created for the community and explain how your hard work affected you intellectually and emotionally.

Best of luck.

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