drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

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Anonymous User
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drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:39 pm

So I decided to just jot down things for a diversity statement.
which should I use and how can I make it better?

1.

“No, I’m not a terrorist.” If only I had a nickel for every time I uttered these words, I’d probably be up on the Forbes list. This was a common response to the nonsense questions that I was asked. Almost any American Muslim will admit it, life after 9/11 hasn’t particularly been an easy ride. Being in grade school at the time where I was surrounded by immaturity and ignorance didn’t really help my situation.
9/11 occurred when I was just eight years old. I just got to school that morning and kids were being picked up early and everyone was wondering why. I had no clue what was going on until I got home.I didn’t understand who was behind the attacks and I didn’t realize until later that this was the event that was going to change the rest of my life. Weeks later we learned about terrorist, our teachers reassured us that we shouldn’t worry. She pulled out a globe and showed us how far the middle east was from South Florida. I started seeing police cars around my local mosque when I went to go with my father to pray on Fridays. It took myself and my peers a few weeks to realize that the people who were behind the attacks claimed to be “Muslim”, and that is when the trouble began.
Ignorance was bliss in middle school, the word terrorist was thrown around to describe Muslim kids in school. It was all fun and games and the mockery only got worse in high school. My last name being ‘Hussain’ only made it worse. I couldn’t go even a couple of days without having someone crack a ‘Saddam’ joke. People didn’t bother to be informed on the matter, they didn’t hesitate to generalize a characteristic upon 1.6 billion people simply by the actions of a few. It was clear that most students were joking when they called a Muslim kid a terrorist, but outside of school there existed real people with real hatred.
With islamaphobia on a rise Muslims in America are now faced with a dilemma. I see countless Muslim friends of mine forsaking their faith to fit in with the rest of society. Some Muslim girls are abandoning their head scarves and conservative clothing. Some Muslim boys are abandoning prayer in public to avoid being considered ‘weird’ by their non-Muslim friends. The more I saw my friends change and become a product of the societal norm, the less I wanted to change. I vowed that I wouldn’t conform to become a product of society, I wasn’t going to forsake my faith just so that I could fit in with others.
When I got into college, people were more mature and accepting of Islam. Although the religion was tolerated by non-Muslim students, many Muslims still changed and conformed to hide who they truly are. I was not afraid to embrace my religion and wasn’t going to go out of my way to hide who I truly am. Ever since I was an elementary school student I was always different from everybody else when I went to a predominantly non-Muslim school. I left early from school on Fridays to make it to my weekly prayers. I fasted all thirty days during the month of Ramadan starving and dehydrated myself while all my friends ate their meals during lunch time. I didn’t celebrate Christmas nor did I eat the same kind of meat as everyone else. Going against the grain was all I ever did and I wasn’t going to change that about myself just to be seen by society as an ordinary person.
In embracing my faith, I decided to join the Muslim Student Association on campus and became part of the executive board. In doing so, I met many more students who were just like me who have also been different all their lives. Together, we have hosted events on campus and ... (not finished)

2.
I was eight years old and my mom dropped me off to school that Tuesday morning after we picked up our daily order of coffee and hot chocolate from Dunkin Donuts. She would go off to her full-time job at a local smoothie joint and I would be in school. Almost an hour into the school day, students were being picked up early. One by one, I saw the puzzled look on each of their faces as their name was called on the intercom to come to the front office to leave school early. We all glanced at each other and pondered what was going on. Nobody told us anything. By 1pm it was just me and my teacher left in the classroom. 24 of the 25 students were picked up early. I was nervous and my stomach was churning at how awkward the situation was for me. Little did I Know, that day was going to be the day that changed the rest of my life.
Weeks after that day, things began to change. I wasn’t just _____ myname anymore. I was _______myname, the boy from ‘that’ place. Before that day, I had always been different. I left early from school on Fridays to make it to my weekly prayers. I fasted all thirty days during the month of Ramadan. I didn’t celebrate Christmas nor did I eat the same kind of meat as everyone else. Going against the grain was all I ever did. But after that day, it became a hard to be different. Being what I had always been wasn’t tolerated by many Americans anymore. It took me a little while to understand why things had changed. I am a Pakistani born Muslim living in America. The terrorist who flew those planes into the buildings claimed to be ‘Muslim’. In the eyes of many Americans, I am associated with terror and killing only because I am a Muslim and the terrorist claimed to be Muslim. This is the thing that has caused me the most difficulty in my life.
Feeling unconnected from other students simply because I was a Muslim made school tough. The immaturity of the students didn’t help my situation. A couple of days couldn’t pass without a student cracking a ‘terrorist’ joke. By the time I entered college I wanted to take advantage of the diversity on campus. I joined and was voted onto the executive boards of the International Muslim Association and the Pakistani Student Association. With leadership roles in both organizations I was able to connect with other college students who felt the same type of hardships I felt as a Muslim in America.(not finished)

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t-14orbust
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Re: drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby t-14orbust » Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:43 pm

lol I know who you are but I won't out you.

Anonymous User
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Re: drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:51 pm

t-14orbust wrote:lol I know who you are but I won't out you.



lol I know YOU know who I am lol

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Ramius
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Re: drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby Ramius » Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:19 pm

Either one will work if you handle them properly. Personally, I like the second option because it really leaves open an opportunity to take your diversity and apply it back into the image you're trying to convey with the rest of your application. Do everything you can to turn what you have into a positive so the ADCOM doesn't see someone who is bitter about their association with a terrorist group without any real justification (prejudice sucks and is completely unfair, but they don't want to hear about that) and show how you affected people around you into thinking differently about the religion of Islam and Muslim people in general. You have a powerful tool here to show how you can positively affect the people around you, just don't overly focus on the injustice of people thinking all Muslim people have a bomb strapped to their chest.

Anonymous User
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Re: drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:45 pm

matthewsean85 wrote:Either one will work if you handle them properly. Personally, I like the second option because it really leaves open an opportunity to take your diversity and apply it back into the image you're trying to convey with the rest of your application. Do everything you can to turn what you have into a positive so the ADCOM doesn't see someone who is bitter about their association with a terrorist group without any real justification (prejudice sucks and is completely unfair, but they don't want to hear about that) and show how you affected people around you into thinking differently about the religion of Islam and Muslim people in general. You have a powerful tool here to show how you can positively affect the people around you, just don't overly focus on the injustice of people thinking all Muslim people have a bomb strapped to their chest.


this is great advice!!! I greatly appreciate it my dude!

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Ramius
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Re: drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby Ramius » Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
matthewsean85 wrote:Either one will work if you handle them properly. Personally, I like the second option because it really leaves open an opportunity to take your diversity and apply it back into the image you're trying to convey with the rest of your application. Do everything you can to turn what you have into a positive so the ADCOM doesn't see someone who is bitter about their association with a terrorist group without any real justification (prejudice sucks and is completely unfair, but they don't want to hear about that) and show how you affected people around you into thinking differently about the religion of Islam and Muslim people in general. You have a powerful tool here to show how you can positively affect the people around you, just don't overly focus on the injustice of people thinking all Muslim people have a bomb strapped to their chest.


this is great advice!!! I greatly appreciate it my dude!


I'd love to see your drafts of this. Feel free to PM me with it when you decide on a draft and ongoing copy of it.

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t-14orbust
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Re: drafts and brainstorm -- diversity statement

Postby t-14orbust » Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:54 pm

How do you post a comment anonymously? I'm not getting that option




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