Harvard University

“Pop!"

I’ve heard about this unmistakable sensation at the time of injury, but never suspected it would ever make its way into my life; significant injury was a disease isolated to the ranks of professional athletes. Or so I thought.

Friday,...

American University

“Wissen Sie, wo die Stadtamhof Haltestelle ist?” (Do you know where the Stadamhof Station is?). The German man directed his question to me, but before I had the chance to respond, my sister interjected, “Oh no, that's just my brother.” In that...

Middlebury College

I asked my friend Ruixi to translate a question from English to Chinese for me. “Excuse me, how old is this tree?”

We were wandering around the village of Yunnan, China when we came across an old lady resting at the trunk of a giant, towering...

Fordham University

What are you?

I am American.

No, but what are you?

I am Vietnamese. My father comes from a childhood of war. A war that took his father and brother and sister without notice. My father comes from broken English and mispronunciations. From...

University of Rochester

601 Elmwood Ave, Rochester, NY 14642 is the most immediate reason why I am beyond excited to be afforded the opportunity to attend the University of Rochester. The Golisano Children’s Hospital is the location where I plan to begin my journey of...

Villanova University

The day I turned twelve, I got my babysitting certification. I started as a mother’s helper within days and eventually began babysitting various families around my neighborhood. After that, I graduated to teaching piano lessons, volunteering at...

Franklin & Marshall

From the first game of "broken telephone" in kindergarten, I knew I was different. Diagnosed with moderate hearing loss, I resorted to books and to my imaginary haven. I have had three-sentence Spanish conversations with Dora, casted spells in the...

American University

My grandma thought I was going to die. By studying abroad in France, away from her care, I learned that I must be the one to make the most out of an experience, even if it’s not what I expected it to be. Coming from Hawai’i from a single parent...

Boston University

When I tell people I work at the library, they often respond with open jaws and comments ranging from, “Oh my gosh—dream job!” to, “That must be boring, huh?” While the tasks are routine, each shift jostles my curiosity awake.

To be clear, I am...

University of Washington

Coffee. My beverage of choice, my trusted companion during long and lonesome nights, my stimulant and fountain of energy. Living in Honduras, I am surrounded by coffee, and yet, it is a crop that I knew very little about - until last summer, when...

Elon University

Monday: “We men are just better than the women.”

And in that moment I zoned back in. Although I later learned that his, the driving instructor's, comment was related to how a male’s body chemistry gives him a better alcohol tolerance, his words...

Ithaca College

What is the ENDA Act? The act that would end living, employment, and service discrimination against those who don’t strictly identify as heterosexual or cisgender (those whose sex matches their gender identity). The bill that would jump-start my...

SUNY Binghamton University

Minuscule white particles floated down gently through the air, but, it wasn't snowing, and I was inside. In my haste to take the next batch of (most likely burning) cookies out of the oven, I had turned the mixer up a touch too high, causing the...

University of Southern California

"Do you speak African?" I feel the question sear into my flesh; a malignant, flaring rash. With a measure of composure that has taken several years to acquire, I invariably reply: "Do you speak North American?"

A baffled expression. A hint of...

Cornell University

While taking care of a young boy afflicted by muscular dystrophy, I was fascinated by his Permobil C300 wheelchair - the awe-inspiring drivetrain that pitted sheer torque against disheveled terrain, the intuitive and maneuverable joystick driving...

University of California - Davis

Last summer, one of the service events that I helped to organize was a Special Olympics showcase. I was paired up with a fifty-six year old lady named Anne, who has autism and a leg injury. In basketball, Anne kept missing the hoop. Every time she...

Amherst College

Pools of gold and crimson flooded the front gates, masked by a heavily saturated mist, infused with the scent of crisp cinnamon apples and a warm underlying accent of rich gravy. We were still a week from Thanksgiving, but the vibrant,...

Indiana University

I stood on the platform above Corey Lake at Camp Eberhart, goosebumps slowly forming as my teeth chattered from the cold wind’s touch on my bare skin. My eyes fixated on the dark blue hues and the ripples forming in the water below me. My hands...

Butler University

There are times when I gaze out of the windows of the South Shore Train and see nothing more than the softened edges of verdant forests and the blurred outlines of monotonous buildings. I watch as the clouds move, change shape, and reform yet...

University of California - Davis

Up down, up down - my left leg bounced vertically in anticipation. My heartbeat accelerated. All I could hear was the announcement of the top teams in the state, who would then qualify to represent CA DECA at the International level competition. “...

Elon University

I slowed my car outside of the soup kitchen and looked at the parking lot. There was one space left, and the only way I could park was to back up into it, which I was terrible at. My heart dropped into my stomach.

Nervously, I put my car in...

Emory University

“Pack! Pack! Pack!”

The unrelenting sounds of ping pong exchanges sing a song to my ears as my mind calms down after my game. The clubroom is filled with people eagerly waiting to have the chance to show off their skills and compete with their...

Boston University

It’s half past one in the morning, and I've progressed in an indistinctive direction. My cold fingers guide the soft vine charcoal across the matte, welcoming surface of smooth paper. My lines are gestural, strokes varied and abstract. Your first...