New York University

Bridgeport, Connecticut: A fleet of fifty-two Greater Bridgeport Transit Authority-owned buses spurt to a start while the sun begins to rise. Each bus slowly creeps along one of the nineteen lines spanning across Fairfield County; one of them, Bus...

University of Georgia

When I look at a lump of clay, I see limitless potential. With only my hands and my imagination, I can take this mound of wet dirt and create something functional. Poetic beauty exists in creating something out of nothing, something beautiful out...

New York University

The story began in last summer while I was looking at the name list of my new class, because every student chose humanities or science as the major after finishing the first year, the school had rearranged our classes. Though having been told...

Santa Clara University

Unsure of how to cope with my own emotions and simultaneously continue to ask her questions, I handed Aliyah a box of tissues. She glanced up at me between sniffles and thanked me, expressing what may have been a disproportionate amount of...

University of California - Los Angeles

I’ve always seen the world through a comedic lens. Even when I’m immersed in something serious, like writing college essays, I can’t help but consider the situation’s ridiculous extremes, such as: How would accomplished historical figures...

University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign

I was shocked by the sound of my own voice.

Having recorded myself, I excitedly pressed play, expecting to validate an acoustic theory I had just read about in physics textbook. As sound travels faster through bone than air, I expected a...

University of Rochester

Arriving three hours early to the venue before the scheduled start of a performance can mean many things. Perhaps you are a member of the performance or you may be determined to secure a great place or seat. You could even be tailgating! However,...

Duke University

Throughout my entire life, I've seen myself as the quintessential Cameron Crazy. Covered in war paint from head to toe, my vehement anti-Tar Heel screams bellowing across the court. As a child, the depth of my interest stalled here - a young...

University of Southern California

Clutching the remote-control helicopter that I had just received, I sprinted home. When I arrived, I rang the bell and waited for the door to open. I was so electrified that I would have run through the door and left a “me” shaped hole. I was not...

University of Pittsburgh

One day, they finally let me see an X-ray machine. The week after, they told me about the anatomy of the body as they treated a patient. Every week, I would see my mother work as a doctor at her workplace. All her coworkers knew me. Every time I...

New York University

A few years ago, on the Charles Bridge across Vltava River, I gained my first impression of NYU. I saw a group of students carrying cameras, lighting and microphones, with the logo NYU printed on the front of their violet t-shirts. I approached...

University of California - Santa Cruz

In a strong, confident voice, I began: “I would like everyone to close their eyes and imagine the stress and frustration you have experienced with fake news.” This was the opening of my team’s presentation to a group of venture capitalists judging...

Fordham University

Summer burns on my back as I watch her head break the surface of the water and sink in. Her hands immediately thrash around for support but can only close upon the cool liquid. Her hair floats on the surface like brown seaweed. Laughing, I stretch...

William and Mary College

When my great-grandmother was on her deathbed, I heard her speak for the first time. Through her shaking words and glittering gaze, she transported me to her teenage years. Describing living during the era of Rafael Trujillo, a time of harmful,...

University of California - Berkeley

Hiding and peeking from behind my father’s chair, I saw his clients come and go. Most of them did the same routine: queue in a line, read documents, sign, and swipe cards. At the same time, my father would skim through the lines, sign, stamp, seal...

University of Southern California

As a kid, I was always fascinated with my mother’s childhood. Living in California, the distant farm-life of Cambodia that she would tell me stories of seemed unimaginable. She would prop me up on her lap and paint pictures in dream-like...

Washington University in St. Louis

My backyard is my studio, and the lush, green grass is my stool.

C.

With one powerful strum, my surroundings come to life: a gust of wind emerges; birds sing in harmony; dandelions dance in unison to my tune, frolicking through the sky. As I sway...

Washington University in St. Louis

The circumstances surrounding my family are defined by an absence of choice. At age 11 my abuelita dropped out of school to begin working as a full-time maid, a job she didn’t choose to have but had to have in order to support her family. At age...

Vassar College

Saturdays were the days I followed my mom to work. Her boss would pick us up from our home in Brooklyn to the store that was miles away in Long Island. The hour-long ride felt like a trip across the country; forests and wheat fields greeted us as...

American University

Title IX became important to me at a sleepover in the 9th grade, when a friend’s mother informed me that its 40th birthday was approaching. As a severely unathletic teenager, I was initially disinterested in a 37-word ploy to get me involved in...

Cornell University

When he fell off a cliff, Harold drew a hot air balloon to catch himself. When he fell in love with an apple tree, he created a dragon to guard its jewels[WU1] . When he created too many pies for himself, he drew hungry animals to prevent waste....

Cornell University

I never imagined that a game of handball could become a proxy battle for who was right about the China-Taiwan conflict, but here I was, my first time in Nepal, and the game was nothing short of savage. Getting into a conflict with my students...