Thursday, November 03, 2005

Final Essay

Please write an essay of approximately 500 words about yourself. You
may include your personal history and describe the influences on your
intellectual development. You may also write about what you wish to
accomplish at Brooklyn College, and your special interests, abilities, career
plans, and life goals. The essay should not repeat facts already listed
on the application. The statement should be typed, double spaced.
Please make sure that your name, Social Security number, telephone number,
and 'New Transfer Undergraduate' are at the top of each page.

     Diligently, I studied the application; the empty spaces where the name and information to be filled brought feelings of apprehension in my heart. A jumbling of thoughts skittered through my consciousness as the realization of the implication of filling out the application entailed sunk in. A life lived for other's is a life worth living; Einstein. Applying to Brooklyn College was my way of expressing a desire to create for myself a life that would be productive and independent. Education, I felt, was the way to a better life: one that would be shared with others who I touched and would become touched through our diverse cultures in my search for meaning and growth. While growing up and attending to a private Jewish day school, I did not have much contact with other cultures. The insular environment provided me with a strong background in Judaic matters such as the Bible and Talmud, an encyclopedic work of Jewish Law, but left me socially deficient and inadequate to deal with the diverse cultural world outside the four wall of the Yeshiva (Hebrew for school). My first class in Brooklyn College was Core 10, Philosophy. Entering a class with tens of multi-ethnic students of all ages and appearances, I felt a feeling of wonderment and vertigo. Feeling shy, I sat by the farthest seat in the class not knowing how to act or where to begin to interact with my new classmates. Staring down, I avoided looking at anyone who remotely looked different than me. Realizing that this mode of behavior was not going to make me friendly to anyone, I turned to the person next to me, who turned out to be a recent immigrant from Jamaica, and stammered out a barely audible hello. I had to repeat it again, until he finally noticed someone was talking to him, and then as normal as can be he returned my salutation. I was so surprised; I almost fell out of my chair. Mentally balancing myself, I introduced myself and told him I was new to the school and asked him for his name.  Ever so politely he told me; that started the beginning of a friendship that continued throughout the semester. I was now officially broken in: the ice was melting and the warmth I felt was indescribable.
     The feeling followed me into all my classes. People respected me for who I was and what I represented religiously. I was not subject to degradation. Teachers and fellow students expressed an interest in getting to understand my perspective and esoteric way of life. I began to open up and become friendly with many people, who before my entrance to college, I wouldn't have given a second glance on the street. My development into coming to terms with my phobia of strangers weakened and waned as the weeks flew by. My proliferation of friendships solidified that I was progressing into becoming a better, more sociable person. I became happy when I realized that I was learning and growing.
     The other advancements that I made in college, due in part to a dedicated professor, was to realize that I enjoyed Accounting. The opportunities and benefits that were touted by the Wall Street Journal: the accounting profession was experiencing unprecedented job vacancies and was to grow by a large percentage, sweetened the notion of becoming a Certified Public Accountant. I made it a personal goal of mine to begin a career in the financial arts. As a young boy I was always put in charge as the class treasurer to collect and tally up the money when we went on a class trip. I was always meticulous to count every last penny and mark the final amount on a piece of paper. Dedicated to being honest and responsible, I set my heart on guarding the money with my life. From the steps of the school, until we reached the final destination, my two "bodyguards", muscular classmates who I appointed to the right and left of me, protected me and made sure we were not accosted by any of the possible bandits who would dare to dream of robbing the class's money. Ingrained in me was this feeling that money and I shared a destiny. Little did I know how true it would be when I decided to Major in Accounting. I decided I would join the honorable profession of people dedicated to making the financial community a safer and less corruptible place. I would direct my analytical abilities -gleaned and honed by the study of the Talmud- to good use, by analyzing transactions in corporations and deciding the proper way to account the proper underlying economic reality into the accounting equation. My dream of becoming the CFO of a major company begins with my Accounting 1 class at Brooklyn College. My aspirations to succeed are strong. Life is based on priorities. My priorities are to be the best student I can be at the school that makes it possible. Brooklyn College. My life is open before me and my passion and dedication to increase the quality of my life and those of others will be in my mind: as I start on the lowest rung of the ladder, and climb to the top.              


Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

"Mi hikdimani vashalem" Study the halachot of Maasser and ribbis, when I opened my first business I was looking for an accountant that knew the halachot of maasser and there is none, I even asked the wealthiest Orthodox people international in shuls and all over as I traveled there is no one who can exact it. From the sound of it you may have that talent, maybe you can discover your own formula? You will have a monopoly in the orthodox world and do a super mitzvah at the same time one of the biggest Chessed.

One of the top salesmen at American express financial services on 3rd ave and 42nd said to me "there is nothing more noble than helping someone manage their hard earned money into growth and early retirement" Chodesh Tov Umevorach.

5:26 PM  
Blogger Frum Singles said...

As one who has been where you are and is well down that road, you're in for a rude awakening. It's just a question of time. These "nice people" who you have come to revere and respect will turn on you in a second when conveninet from them. Ignorance is bliss, and you appear to be more than a bit nieve in the ways of the world. But your only TRUE frinds and the ONLY people that will be there for you when you need them are your chaveirim from yeshiva and the frum community. Call me narrow minded and any other type of name, but ain chacham kbal hanisayon. Better that you learn from other people's expereinces rather than the hard way on your own.

7:30 PM  
Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Sorry, you had bad experiences, but the truth is the only friend you will ever have is yourself.

Learn to use those people for their knowledge, and the fact that you won't be there on the Jewish holidays you will need their notes... but just do not socialize with them AFTER school. Chacham einav berosho.

11:39 PM  
Blogger EN said...

Little Red Hoodie-Thanks for your concern and advice. I do plan to be knowlegable in halachic matters.

Frum Single- I appreciate your consern, bt I was just kissing up in my essay for a scholarship, most of what I wrote was exagerated. Each person had different nisyonos. Sorry to hear you didn't pass.

12:38 AM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

Very well written EN, I'm proud of you.


You are the one who is being naive, I have been just stabbed in the back just as often by "frum, Yeshivish" (Barf, Barf) ppl as by co-workers or fellow students in College.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Frum Singles said...

What sign is hanging on your back that is attracting all these stabbers?

10:50 AM  
Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Np Problem, accounting is not the lowest rung... ask most business people and they will tell you, lawyers and investment bankers are lower...

Besides, everyone loves an accountant that can save them $.
good luck!

7:12 PM  
Blogger YS said...

Well written, hope you don't mind if I link to this.

5:40 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Why you were surprised that someone would say hello to you?

It is truly amazing that someone could have grown up in New York City, the most diverse place in the world, and have been so isolated. I think it's sad. I'm glad you are taking steps to overcome this mindset.

7:40 PM  

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