Honors college Essay

In its mission statement, the UIC Honors College is described as a community of

scholars whose goal is to enrich the education experience of undergraduates and allow

the faculty and students of all disciplines to interact in teaching, learning and research.

Please tell us “How can you contribute to the Honors College community?” What

benefits do you expect in return? (400-500 words)

Throughout my short lifetime of difficulties and discouragements, education has

been the one constant and one motivation that helped me stay positive. When my life

seemed to be falling apart, I knew I could get on the bus, go to school, and enter a

classroom I never wanted to leave. Whenever I was having a bad day, I redirected my

energy and passion into learning.

My teachers have played a special part in creating this safehaven for me.

They’ve pushed me to grow in unimaginable ways, from reading dozens of chapter

books in third grade to writing seven-page research papers on hipster culture and the

struggle for identity in modern society. Each of my teachers has encouraged me to

channel the intensity of my struggles into my learning, which has allowed me to achieve

successes larger than I thought I was capable of.

Because of their influence, something in me changed. I found myself taking on a

more active role in my education — in and out of the classroom. I remember watching

How It’s Made in my freetime, the hours I spent constructing papers and projects for

pure self-gratification, and the hundreds of emails I’ve sent to my teachers, asking

questions and relating my finds to class discussions. I loved taking my education

outside the classroom, and I still love it. Most of my life is based on academia because I

truly believe an education and studying something you’re passionate about can get you

where you want in life.

Sometimes, a person forces their wants and desires on other people. This can

take the form of mothers putting their five-year- old daughters on Toddler’s and Tiaras or

ex-druggie dads keeping their kids in check so they don’t make the same mistakes they

did. But I’m a little different.

A teacher once referred to me as “very demanding.” This startled me initially, but

then he continued: “Lizzie is demanding of her classmates. She expects them to come

prepared and ready to learn. She is demanding of herself and of her teachers. She

really is a student who inspires me to bring my best everyday to the classroom because

that’s what she does.”

There’s no better way to describe what I will bring to the Honors College

community than this quote. I can’t imagine my life without school and without

encouraging myself and others to succeed. It has pushed me throughout life, and I

wouldn’t be who I am without my education or the inspiration behind it: my teachers. In

this community, I will motivate my peers to push themselves beyond the concept of ‘A’s’

and ‘B’s’. I will challenge them and remind them to never lose the drive that got them

there in the first place. I expect my peers to do the same for me, because learning is not

something a person can do alone. It requires input and collaboration from others. The

Honors College will give me that, and I know I can give it back.

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