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College Admissions Essay - Rewards of Understanding
As a high school freshman, I met and became friends with many new people. Among the most fascinating people was Lauren.
I met Lauren in my lab class. She was outspoken and liberal. Her clothing revealed creativity; her big eyes, curiosity and strength. I was interested in learning more about Lauren, but felt shy about approaching her.
My peers made fun of Lauren's manners and actions. They considered her too strange to know and shunned her. This prejudice made me realize I was not interested in knowing people who criticize based on observation rather than experience. Still, I said nothing in her defense.
Recently, I traveled with my art class to Williamstown, Massachusetts. That was when I got to know and became friends with Lauren. She and I talked during the bus ride as she revealed to me unimaginable secrets.
Lauren told me about her lifelong battle with Depression and Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). She also told me about her suicide attempts. She said, "When I was a kid, I was a dork and never good at anything social. Many times I would do or say the wrong thing. I felt rejected and lonely."
I remembered those who mocked Lauren and felt angry at them. People's cruelty can be very painful even to those who appear strong and especially to those who live with emotional and social challenges. That is why it is crucial to understand someone before judgment and not act with brutality to those who are different.
Lauren told me that art was her greatest passion. "Art is the only thing that has kept me sane because I can escape into it," she said.
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Now as a senior I look back on my high school career and think about all the people that taught me about knowledge, passion, and understanding. Among them is Lauren. She taught me that refraining from prejudice and keeping an open mind can be very rewarding.