Valued Success

What sets you apart from other applicants, based on unique educational or life experiences, personal or family circumstances, obstacles overcome and/or achievements?

Albert Einstein said, “Try not to become a man of success but rather try to become a man of value.” I only truly began to understand this quote over the course of the last school year. Until this year, success in high school was never difficult for me. A daily hour of studying was enough to earn me A’s and B’s. This year has been decidedly different. The very first day of classes, my AP physics teacher announced to us that his course was the hardest that the school offered, and then proceeded to show us why. Many hours a day I spent on that class; sometimes the concepts would come easily, sometimes not so much. After months of hard work, I moved my grade from a D to a mid-grade B, while 50 percent of the class floundered between a C or a D. It was after those months that my classmates started to find me in the library and ask me to help them. My free period and oftentimes my lunch period were dedicated to those who had approached me and said, “I don’t understand.” Sometimes I would spend hours with a single person, trying to get them to understand the concept so that they could do well on the homework and tests. Sometimes I would fall short and sometimes they would, yet they kept coming back to me like I was the one who knew what I was doing. That experience taught me the true meaning of value: when help is needed, help should be given. Getting good grades is important, but it is those whom I have lifted up that have truly made me feel successful.

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