Pomona College Admission Sample Essay About Hobby or Interest

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Pomona College Admission Sample Essay About Hobby or Interest

Essay by Andrea Ray

It's past late on a Thursday; I'm driving past concrete bridges under the fluorescent glow of streetlights, the German brick of Cincinnati blending into blue-black alleyways. During these trips home when all that faces me are boarded up buildings and barren sidewalks, I feel like a fool. I have a paper to write, a math test tomorrow that I haven't studied for, and yet I dragged myself across town to a squat, dumpy building that smells vaguely of cheese to talk to the world a little bit. Got a call two days ago, went into scramble mode, discarded plans with family and friends, all to sweat over a microphone for two or three hours.

I am a DJ at community radio station WAIF-FM, and go-to substitute. Four in the morning on a Tuesday? I'll be there. Seven on a Saturday night even though I haven't seen my friends in weeks? I'll be there. Some days I regret ever stepping foot in that crummy building, but when the on-air sign goes red, there isn't anything you could do to get me out of the studio.

I started because I had always had a vague curiosity with radio and had come by to watch a friend fill in for a DJ with pneumonia. Two hours later, her show was over and a harried woman came in, told us that someone had quit and offered me his spot. After minimal training, I was on the air two weeks later with the show Kindred Sanction, a local music program. Public Service Announcements, promotional bits, news items and those incessant pleas for money, I do it all while beaming out Cincinnati's finest to the world. I can be good, very good, if I remember that nobody is listening. Then I'm a witty cultural landmark throwing records on the air with flair Wolfman Jack couldn't touch. The only problem is that I occasionally have an audience, and when the phone flashes, I go into panic mode. Oh please no, Oh please yes have there be people listening. Sometimes it's a wrong number and I try to go back to cool announcer Andrea, but hopes have been raised and dashed and I finish the night miffed. More often it's a listener and I am both thrilled and terrified by the prospect. Those times I take comfort in the deserted sidewalks, thinking, maybe some of those people are listening, and maybe, just maybe they like what they heard.

Andrea Ray attends Pomona College.

Essay Review

Late nights at waif

Author Andrea Ray's essay sparkles because we can see her mind at work. She loves being a DJ, but when driving home after a late night on the air, she feels like a crazy person. Her indecision is partly a rhetorical device, serving to highlight her commitment. Passions don't make logical sense. Andrea also includes a pleasing hint of self-mockery, signaling that she does not take herself too seriously. In Andrea's words, "I think the essay still has problems—the imagery is a little heavy handed—but I liked it because I thought it brought itself to a conclusion naturally, instead of slamming some life lesson down the reader's throat."

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