Contribution Letter, Essay Example
If I am admitted to graduate study in my chosen area, I will bring many special contributions, some of which I have listed below in five broad categories. Contribution to diversity: Record of overcoming adversity (economic, social, physical). Knowledge of more than one language. Unusual geographic region of origin.
I was born and raised in South Africa during the Apartheid Era, where I lived until I was 25 years of age. In 1996, I moved to the United States. I obtained dual citizenship in 2006. My native (first) language is Afrikaans. The region where I grew up was mainly an Afrikaans-speaking region. I am also fluent in Dutch and English. The latter was mandatory in high school, but I only learned to speak it well after I moved to the USA.
I have overcome racial scrutiny and unfair judgment learned by society. Although my father and some friends got killed by racial upset, I had the opportunity, after moving to the USA, to begin a new life journey and to discover the healing effects of true forgiveness. Being a female, I feel that I can accomplish my goal by furthering my education and preparing myself for a successful future in many different areas, not just for myself but also to enrich and better the lives of others—especially senior citizens.
After volunteering at Heritage Place in Bandon, Oregon, for six months, I received a special acknowledgement from staff and residents and a permanent job offer. I see receiving my USA citizenship as a special blessing and accomplishment. Years of hard work, persistence, and trust paid off. I received a special acknowledgement at my graduation ceremony in May for making a difference on campus by sharing joy, transportation, and providing baked goods to students and staff on a regular basis. I arranged with the manager of King-Soopers to donate all day-old produce and baked goods to non-profit organizations and delivered these daily.
Research and Creative Achievements
My research experience was as a student in South Africa and at Colorado Mountain College by working with seniors on a regular basis. I noticed the void within them and the hunger for personal touch (It is called skin-hunger when people never get a hug or touch), for somebody to whom to raise their concerns, to tell their life stories and to laugh. In the Alzheimers units, I use life-like baby dolls for them to hold, rock and nurture. They do not always realize that the dolls are not human. Animal therapy also proved to be very fruitful.
Leadership Background and Potential
While I have not been in a leadership position per se, I have displayed some of its traits in both the paid and volunteer positions that I have held. Important to my leadership ability are my empathy, consistency, direction, effective communication, flexibility, and conviction. I welcome input, encourage two-way communication, and utilize helpful information.
Other Unique Life Experiences Relevant to My Pursuit of Graduate Education.
I experience unique life situations on a daily basis. I keep my focus on Christ and can see His will unfolding for me daily; and the Masters in Gerontology Program is another step toward fulfilling my call in life.
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