Diverse Identity

Common Application essay on diversity


“Dinner is ready!” Every Sunday a member of our family takes a turn choosing what we’re having for dinner, and today was my turn. My mother had prepared all of my favorite food, from foie gras to sea urchin sushi to satay. As we began eating, my mother asked me her favorite question: “What did you get on your tests this week?” I answered proudly, knowing that I studied the materials thoroughly and did well.

My mother then smirked, “Mostly good, but an A- in history? When I got an A-, my father would hit my hands with a ruler.”

“She tried her best, keep it up.” said my Father.

“This is why Indonesia never progresses, everyone lacks rigor. When my grandfather was here during colonization, he said the people were so lazy...” babbled my mother, and the conversation continued. It was the usual back-and-forth discussion caused by their opposing backgrounds, personalities, and values. After we finished dinner and did our Islamic prayers, my mother brought us to her room to thank our Japanese ancestors. My household was like a Chex party mix – a combination of many things.

Growing up in an environment filled with conflicting ideas taught me to be open minded: I am never afraid to try new things, to meet new people, to consider different...

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