Essay Questions

What is your most memorable childhood experience?My most memorable childhood experience was traveling from China to the United States to permanently live with my parents at the age of 5. Since my grandparents, who I was living with at the time, could only bring me as far as the airport, I flew on an airplane for 14 hours by myself. Being a 5 year old, I could not express myself very well, and I found the experience to be terrifying at first, as I could not communicate well and only spoke a limited amount of Mandarin Chinese. I recall crying at one point because I was lonely and scared. I was ultimately soothed and calmed by a flight attendant named Debbie, who came by to check on me periodically to see if I was doing well. At the time, I remember thinking to myself how strange it was that despite not being able to speak to one another, she was still so kind and reassuring. This initial journey from China to the United States played a major role in introducing me to the world outside of China, which was all that I had known until then.
What immediate family member do you closely identify with and why?I most closely identify with my mother, since I share many aspects of my personality with her. We share a mutual interest in music and art, and we both possess a relatively lax demeanor and outlook.
What character traits do you admire in an individual?I admire tact - the ability to react accordingly to a wide variety of situations is a very difficult skill to develop, and one that I am actively working on trying to improve in myself. I believe one's tact reveals who they are through the various difficult situations they encounter. I also admire meaningful self-reflection. I think we are on a constant journey to try and improve ourselves, not only to seem more presentable to other people in our lives, but to feel some semblance of progress as a person. Someone who engages in meaningful self-reflection has more agency over how they wish to change themselves, regardless if it's for better or worse.
What is the funniest thing ever to happen to you?I think the funniest thing to ever happen to me took place during my freshman year of high school. I sang a lot, and participated in every choir at my high school. I also auditioned for and was a part of the All District Choir for four years. During my first year in Districts, my friend (who stood next to me in concert formation) and I didn't get the memo that we should've used black folders to hold our music. He and I both held colored folders, one red, one blue. Thus, during the performance, we stuck out like a sore thumb on stage - one spot of red, one spot of blue among a sea of black and white. The directors of each school's choir all sat in a designated area near the front. Our director was probably busy either pretending she didn't know us, or disowning us altogether.
If time and money were not an issue, where would you travel and why?I would travel to Antarctica because then I will have been on all seven continents. I can make travel to any place meaningful for myself, so there isn't a specific location that immediately comes to mind for where I would like to travel.
When and if you ever have children, what would you like to pass on to them?The only thing I believe that I can pass on to my future children is my current awareness and perspective of the world. For each person this is different, and this will ultimately be the deciding factor in how I raise my children and influence them as a parent. However, I don't mean that I wish for them to inherit my perspective, as they should be able to decide that for themselves and nurture their own.