personal statement peer review

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personal statement peer review

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 16, 2018 4:56 am

“ There will not be salvation without suffering.” - Invisible Guest
When I was in a geology internship in Tangyu, Xi'an, in 2016, I accidentally came to know that a factory was discharging polluted water secretly to Tangyu River. As a geology major student, I decided to report this to the government.
It was easy to find out the telephone hotline, but I hesitated because another story came across my mind: a young and unsophisticated student reported his school to the municipal government for illegally opening holiday classes, yet the concerning official handed over the poor student’s phone number to his school. The result was that the student being dismissed. I wondered what would be the result of me being known by that factory. There’s a saying in China: “To blockade the source of one’s fortune is no different from murdering his parents." So I was afraid it would be more than leaving school. Thinking of my parents and the fact that I was the only child of the family, I gave up and tried to comfort myself that I was just an ordinary person, and this was merely human nature to keep oneself from danger.
But a sense of guilt and shame tormented me. I had learned from the ancient Chinese philosopher Mencius that” a man should never yield to the intimidation of power." I have always acted accordingly, restraining myself to this moral principle. I once publicly questioned the unreasonableness of a headmaster of one prestigious university. I could still remember his awkward reply to me and his apparent discomfort for being questioned so boldly by a nobody. When the school forced us to sacrifice our leisure time for training lessons, I led my fellow classmates to resist. Moreover, when I participated in some activities such as the Model United Nations Conference, (an academic activity where a group of students modeling themselves as diplomats, representing designated countries while defending their national interests), I succeeded in inspiring a desperate team , achieving an astounding reversal just before its closure. I always imagined I was The Hero, the one who is meant to accomplish something, to make a difference. Nevertheless, this incident crushed my fantasies, proving that I was nothing but an ordinary person, even a coward, too afraid to display my own opinions, too selfish to take risks for the greater welfare of society.
I thought things would pass slowly over time, but I was wrong. In a Special Hydrogeology class, our teacher introduced to us the Minamata Disease in Japan, which was caused by the pollution of industrial waste water . Looking at the distorted and morbid bodies, painful and numb faces in the picture, I was reminded of the thing I should have done. Compunction rose again, engulfing me like black sewers so I could not breathe. At that moment, I was drowning in my own sense of guilt, so powerful and irresistible the guilt was that it compelled me to do something to redeem myself. Nonetheless, I still could not muster the courage to make the call because I was still unable to face the consequences. Maybe I had to take some more circuitous and safer ways.
In the course of Groundwater Resources Management, the teacher mentioned the U.S. environmental pollution control by chance. She said the pollution in the United States was once very grave, such as the infamous photochemical smog incident in Los Angeles. But under the government's efforts, the environment in the U.S. has greatly improved and the pollution issue is no longer to be worried about by the public. She believed that U.S. law system played a crucial role in this process. For example, the Clean Air Act has significantly improved the quality of the air. Therefore, she thought that at this stage, China could further advance its law system by learning from the environmental laws of the U.S. while drafting new provisions to counter the current environmental problems.
Her words showed me a way to make up for my constant regret while lifting some of my senses of guilt —-by devoting myself to the field of environmental laws. The United States environmental protection law is the most advanced at the current stage. Then, I made up my mind to strive for an opportunity to study law in the United States, to acquire a better understanding of the environmental law in the United States as well as its implementations and applications. Afterwards, I will return to China, using what I would have learned to modify the environmental law system of China.
Some people may consider my shifting to the field of law a virtual betrayal to my geology major. I couldn’t agree with them, for the core goal of geology is to do all that we can to understand and protect the environment. Since I have come to the conclusion that the fundamental problem about the environmental pollution in China is a lack of a mature and pragmatic environmental law system, I would say that studying law is the best way to achieve what I had set about to.
I believe I can make a difference, even if I’m just a mortal. I strive to redeem my sin, even if the process is painful.

I want some suggestions. Thank you.

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