University of California at Davis Admission Essay about Hobby or Interest

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University of California at Davis Application Essay Sample on Hobby or Interest

Essay by Chris Ramirez

It was a thrill to land my dream job this summer as an intern with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission. As long as I can remember, I have been fascinated with everything associated with transportation. My commute to high school on the Bay Area Rapid Transit System (BART) and the city bus system puts me on the front lines as a user of public transit. This daily use has increased my awareness of how transit systems work and the impact transit policy decisions have on people. Last year in Journalism, my concern prompted me to interview other student commuters and write an editorial for the school newspaper on how proposed reductions in transit services would affect our own school community. I also wrote an English essay in support of equality in policymaking and environmental justice when allocating access to public transportation services.

Outside of school, I have been a member of several transit advocacy groups consisting of people from all walks of life. I have attended multiple public hearings and participated in the Transportation 2030 Conference, which set transportation goals for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area for the next twenty-five years. Because of my involvement, I was featured in the Metropolitan Transportation Commission's annual report. Although it was exciting to see my photo on the cover, more importantly, this experience led to my summer internship at the regional planning agency.At MTC headquarters my assignment placed me in the Legislation and Public Affairs Department working primarily on the awards program, honoring people and projects that have helped to make transportation more efficient. I solicited nominations, wrote summaries for the awards jury, and coordinated the many video shoots for the film featuring award winners. Working with the nominees and hearing their personal stories gave me a first-hand view of their perceptions on current transportation issues as well as visions for the future. At the same time, I served as an intern with BART in the Amtrak Capitol Corridor Management Section. My position enabled me to gain marketing experience working on their "Kids Ride Free" and "Capitol Corridor Month on BART" promotions. Both internship positions provided a great opportunity to work with transportation professionals. Instead of looking from the outside in, as a transit user, I saw the process from the inside out. I learned that operations and management solutions are more complex than fixing one immediate problem, and that one must consider the ramifications the solutions have in the broader context. My internship allowed me to attend meetings with commissioners, write articles for the agency newsletters, and observe policy decisions being made. This experience convinced me that a career in a transportation-related field is something I want to pursue.

To help make this dream into a reality, I intend to major in Urban Studies or Public Policy with an emphasis in transportation. Transportation issues encompass environmental, political, socioeconomic, legal, and economic concerns. I plan on taking courses in these areas as well as researching successful transit systems in other countries. Gaining this broader perspective will be important to my understanding of how mass transit can improve our lives by reducing congestion and improving air quality.

The "smart growth" concept that is currently gaining attention interests me. The idea is to create "transit villages" that will provide a variety of housing options and services within walking distance of public transportation. I feel this is a critical time to make good and equitable transportation decisions and believe the University of California, with its wide range of focused disciplines and commitment to quality education, will provide me with the knowledge necessary to participate in making those decisions. I am excited to be a part of the future transportation planning challenges.

Chris Ramirez attends the University of California at Davis.

Essay Review

BART, MTC, and me

When a student is passionate about an interest, and has taken the initiative to pursue that interest, an essay can almost write itself. Author Chris Ramirez is an excellent writer, but he merely needs to describe what he has done to learn about, and work on, issues related to public transportation. How many high school students attend public hearings or participate in conferences dealing with long-term transportation goals? Chris is already a functioning professional in his field of interest, which gives him all the fodder he needs for the ultimate "show, don't tell" essay.

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