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Writer's Block--CWRU secondary

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Tweetie_bird, Jul 29, 2002.

  1. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    Ordinarily, I would have jumped to write about my hobbies or activities outside of medicine. But I am noticing a strange trend in all my activities outside of medicine--they all seem to be related to "service."

    I don't want to sound phony in the secondary, and yet I feel like service has always been a huge part of my life starting from childhood. I am just suffering a severe writer's block. could you guys share with me a few ideas you wrote about. . . perhaps it can get me motivated to get started on mine. Oh, and you don't have to worry about me using any of your ideas. I do have my own, I just need some inspiration...or spark...or something. :(

    Following was the question:
    Type or Copy and Paste a brief essay in your own words on some subject outside of medicine which has held your interest. Please limit your essay to 2 pages.

    PS: what do they mean by "subject" anyway??? Do they mean a class. . . .or just a "topic?" What context did you use it in?
     
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  3. scienceriot

    scienceriot New Member

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    Jul 23, 2002
    I don't think they mean school subject- I would try to get as far away from science/medicine as possible: write about how you make art, fix motorcycles, play flamenco guitar.
    Or, if you want to talk about service, hopefully you have something like a soup kitchen, not a hospital. I think they want to hear that you have other interests besides a slavish devotion to being an MD.
     
  4. Resident Alien

    Resident Alien What? 7+ Year Member

    1,041
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    Jul 21, 2001
    Cleveland
    You can write about anything that you've been interested in (read involved) over the years. Some example topics include:
    -Cricket (my essay).
    -Coppernicus and his view of the world (a friend)
    -Classical music (a friend)
    -Fishing (an SDNer)

    If you need a copy of my essay, pm me.

    Good luck :)
     
  5. Doctor Octopus

    Doctor Octopus Hospitalist 10+ Year Member

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    May 23, 2002
    "Picksburgh"
    I almost wrote about my bonzai tree. The only problem was that I don't know what kind of plant it is!

    I ended up writing about this club I started a few years ago called the Junto. It's really cool, and totally unrelated to school or medicine. If anyone in the Cleveland area would like to come to one of our meetings go ahead and PM me.
     
  6. Smoke This

    Smoke This Sweet cuppin' cakes! 10+ Year Member

    I just told mountain biking stories.
     
  7. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    I have a bunch of ideas, but I am not sure how "valid" they can be. I have dabbled a bit here and there in almost everything, but nothing I have been "seriously" involved with. Here's a short list--

    Under "Service" category--
    I have always loved working with children, and have worked for 4 years in an Org. that advocated young children doing something extraordinary in the community. This falls under service because I volunteered with them for 4 years. We did a bunch of cool stuff like raise memorial walls with etched tiles in the names of these kids. i.e. Each kid that got nominated to the organization was able draw out on a template what their "motto" or "essense" is. We finally made a tile out of that design, and all of these tiles put together made a wall. I helped build 2 such walls in our city.

    Under "Art" category--Writing--
    I enjoy writing, whether it's abstract poetry or just essays. Unfortunately, I don't usually let anybody read them (wierd, I know). Most of my writing in the last year or two has been journaling. However, in a philosophy class I once wrote a paper on euthanasia that eventually got published in an International Journal of Bioethics. I would **love** to write about this since this issue is really close to my heart, but isn't medical ethics a part of medicine???

    On other thing I am currently working on is somewhat of an autobiography. I am first generation immigrant in my family, and getting married in 4 months. I have been writing about my childhood, how we moved here, how I met the my fiancee etc. The point is, I have started to realize how important family history and it's documentation is, so I've been working on pretty much a "family documentary" from both, my side of the family and my fiancee's. I have enough stories and information gathered to go back 4 generations. But I don't know if AD COMS will think this is too sappy or what?? I plan to eventually have this documentary on the web, so my future generations can read it. I guess this is one way I've always wanted to leave a mark in my family's history.

    RECIPE BOOK: Ok, now this is something I've worked on for a year. I absolutely love cooking, and am one of those wierdos who considers cooking to be an art form. Aside from just loving the art, I have taken pleasure in writing a book wherein I've been able to include stuff from generations ago.


    MORE art: Pottery--
    again, not something I've done in a LONG TIME yet I used to be quite involved in it.

    Don't most of these sound a bit wishy-washy? Or is it just me that's being my own toughest critic?
    What do you think?

    If you were an Ad Com, what would YOU like to hear most about? Please let me know.
     
  8. Mr. H

    Mr. H 7+ Year Member

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    Dec 11, 2001
    I just told of my r/c glider hobby, and then tied it in to my life in general. One of the greatest essay's I feel I have written!
     
  9. mamie

    mamie 7+ Year Member

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    Mar 21, 2002
    Boston
    When I interviewed last year, I was one of the first non-early decision people to interview at Case. Hence, I was interviewed by Dr. Kirby, the assoc. dean of admissions. My essay was simply an anti-capitol punishment essay that dealt with the ills of the system. He made the point that my essay would be liked by the committee because it showed that I took a stance about something that I really cared about, and didn't really care about what others thought. Just pick a topic that really interests you and this will show the committee that you have some tremendous depth. If that means something controversial, go for it. Or on the other hand, write about a favorite passtime. Whatever you do, do it with sincerity and honesty and the adcom will see that in you, the applicant.
     
  10. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear 2K Member 7+ Year Member

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    Oct 11, 2001
    for such an essay, are u trying to tie it in w/ medicine?
     
  11. UCLA Paratrooper

    UCLA Paratrooper Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Apr 13, 2002
    Los Angeles, CA
    I really need some advice for this secondary question as well...

    Which one of the following should I write about:

    -- My military adventures (training) - I talked a little about this in my personal statement and its in my experience descriptions

    -- Public Education & At-Risk - I'm an Education minor and am very passionate about this stuff

    -- Growing up in Korea (second grade to my senior year in HS) - I'm thinking this can validate my ESL and my diverse experiences


    What do you guys think!

    Thanks!

    UCLA Paratrooper
     
  12. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    bumppppppppp
     
  13. Explosivo

    Explosivo blah! 7+ Year Member

    I'm writing about soccer, something I have played and enjoyed my entire life. Is it valid? Who cares...it's something I like to talk and write about, its part of who I am.

    Tweetie, you can write about anything you want as long as it reveals a part of you. Validity is something you confer on what you write when it is written with sincerity and honesty. If they feel that what you have written about yourself or one of your interests isn't valid, then perhaps they aren't the right medical school for you. No big deal, and move on.

    My suggestion? Write about your writing and poetry. Remeber that the question has to be an interest so writing about yourself and your immigrant experience probably wouldn't qualify since it isn't an interest per se. Do you have a favorite writer or poet? Perhaps you can talk about the way you go about writing your poetry? Why do you write it? How does it make you feel? I think you have a great topic right there.
     
  14. Epi

    Epi Fuzzy Tiger 7+ Year Member

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    Jul 28, 2001
    Calvin's house
    I wrote that essay last year and when they mean subject, i think they mean a topic outside of medicine, any topic, that you are interested in talking about.
    It seems to me this essay is there to help them learn more about you as a person and see how your personality or interests ouside of medicine are like.

    Paratrooper:

    All those topics sound interesting, but I would like to hear more about

    Public Education & At-Risk - I'm an Education minor and am very passionate about this stuff

    if you are passionate about that topic you could probably make your essay very engaging b/c you are so interested in talking about it.
     
  15. Doctor Octopus

    Doctor Octopus Hospitalist 10+ Year Member

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    May 23, 2002
    "Picksburgh"
    Tweetie,
    I love the cookbook idea! Did you ever see/read Like Water For Chocolate?
     
  16. limit

    limit Molesting my inner-child 10+ Year Member

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    Jun 21, 2000
    New York City
    don't mean to barge in on tweetie's thread, but while it's kicking, I have a similar question. Bodybuilding is a big part of my life (I'll be a doing a bodybuilding competition next spring actually), and if I got the chance to write about it on applications or secondaries I would (I'm applying next year, not this). However, it have a feeling it might come off as a bit extravagant... bodybuilding seems to carry a negative connotation, most people assume we are just "freaks on steroids", or whatever the typical slur may be. What do you guys think, is it a valid topic for me to write about when I get the chance, or should I just avoid it altogether? Or perhaps knock it down to maybe a "hobby of working out" or something of that sort?

    many thanks.
     
  17. Resident Alien

    Resident Alien What? 7+ Year Member

    1,041
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    Jul 21, 2001
    Cleveland
    Tweetie, i sent you a pm

    UCLA Paratrooper, Id write about the public education one.

    limit , i dont see anything wrong with the bodybuilding idea. You could even explain and counter negative connotations about steroids etc in your essay.
     
  18. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    Unfortunately no, I haven't. A friend once recommended the movie to me, but I completely forgot to pick it up. I might do it this weekend. Do you recommend the book or the movie more? What's it about? Perhaps you can PM me??

    I am really leaning toward the cooking idea. I am realizing it's really quite a bit part of my life, and I do enjoy it, I do take time out of my schedule to do it and it's something I like!! . . . well, enough to come up with my own recipe book. LOL
     
  19. omores

    omores sleep deprived 10+ Year Member

    572
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    Jul 2, 2000
    Seattle
    My sense is that Case isn't looking for an essay that restates your acheivements or your qualifications as a future doctor. They want something that reveals your personality and your passions. These make the best essays anyway.

    Tweetie: I'm with you on the cooking idea. Why do you "absolutely love" it? Why do you consider it an art form? What are some of your favorite things to cook? Do you like to follow recipes, or do you prefer to wing it?

    And about the recipes you collect: why does the idea of compiling a book of recipes appeal to you? Does it give you a sense of connectedness across generations of your family? How does it influence your sense of the culture you come from?

    I think this is a wonderfully rich topic, and it sounds like one you'd be able to turn into a delicious essay.
     
  20. Doctor Octopus

    Doctor Octopus Hospitalist 10+ Year Member

    1,621
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    May 23, 2002
    "Picksburgh"
    The book is a love story/cookbook. Every chapter has a recipe handed down through the author's family. Both the book and the film are of the genre known as Magical Realism. I would just watch the movie first. It's wonderful. Then, if you have time, read the book and learn how to make quail in rose petal sauce.
     
  21. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001

    Tweetie: I'm with you on the cooking idea. Why do you "absolutely love" it? Why do you consider it an art form? What are some of your favorite things to cook? Do you like to follow recipes, or do you prefer to wing it?

    And about the recipes you collect: why does the idea of compiling a book of recipes appeal to you? Does it give you a sense of connectedness across generations of your family? How does it influence your sense of the culture you come from?

    I think this is a wonderfully rich topic, and it sounds like one you'd be able to turn into a delicious essay.
    [/QUOTE]

    You have hit the nail on the head. I asked myself these same questions all day today, and feel pretty confident with how the essay will turn out to be. Thank you for your help, guys. I really wanted to write something FUN and I am glad I picked this topic. I certainly am going to enjoy writing it.


    Doc Octopus: that sounds like a delightful movie, I am going to rent it this weekend. Quail in petal sauce. . . . hmmmmm. . . .
     
  22. Cydney Foote

    Cydney Foote Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Jun 6, 2002
    Los Angeles, CA
    I think it would make a great essay. It's obviously something you're committed to, that gets you going, and those kinds of activities are the ones that show your uniqueness to the admissions committee. I wouldn't dilute it to merely working out. So many people already do that -- it sounds like you do a lot more -- plus I don't know how passionate you would sound about it. Go with bodybuilding!
     

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