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Soka University of America Essay Example by an Accepted Student

 

Soka University of America is a top liberal arts college, so it’s important to write strong essays to help your application stand out. In this post, we’ll share an essay a real student has submitted to Soka University of America. (Names and identifying information have been changed, but all other details are preserved).

 

Please note: Looking at examples of real essays students have submitted to colleges can be very beneficial to get inspiration for your essays. You should never copy or plagiarize from these examples when writing your own essays. Colleges can tell when an essay isn’t genuine and will not view students favorably if they plagiarized. 

 

Read our Soka University of America essay breakdown to get a comprehensive overview of this year’s supplemental prompts.

 

Want to know your chances at Soka University of America? Calculate your chances for free!

 

Example

 

Prompt: During January block, Soka students participate in a Learning Cluster or research seminar where students work in teams with faculty to propose, research, and model constructive approaches to local, regional and/or global issues. What question would you investigate during a Learning Cluster? Describe why this topic is one you are passionate about and how you envision solving or supporting this particular issue. (500-750 words)

 

To what extent does language help enhance historical initiatives to conserve extinct/endangered languages? As a full IB Diploma student, I was exposed to researching different topics in many of my classes, most notably, in IB Spanish and Theory of Knowledge. In my junior year, I researched indigenous languages from many Latin American countries like ancient Nahuatl, the language the Aztecs used to speak, and was fascinated to the point of wanting to speak it to embrace my Hispanic roots. 

 

Despite learning about these indigenous languages, I realized after reading an NPR article that languages, like rare animals, are at risk of becoming endangered, let alone extinct. Hawaiian, a language I came to love through the Disney classic Lilo and Stitch, was at the brink of extinction if not for the actions of student activists who wanted to conserve Hawaii’s historical language. As I read this NPR article, I became fascinated with incorporating my love for learning languages to create solutions to conserve endangered languages. And if possible, bring back an extinct one too.

 

A solution I thought of is not concrete as it could be tinkered with newer possibilities in the future. For starters, English is currently the lingua franca of the entire world, with more than half of the world’s people speaking it. However, the modern alphabet has evolved throughout history from its original state to a universal one. With the help of many notable language historians and access to ancient archives of the first civilizations’ languages, we can develop methods of conserving these precious artifacts. 

 

Irish Gaelic, according to the UNESCO Atlas of the World’s Languages, is an endangered language. With it being one of the first languages, one solution that can help answer the question can be through family trees. Family trees can trace the origins of the language, hence find the demographics of those who might still be living and speaking it. Supporting study abroad programs that allow students to learn more about these languages can attract future students.  Likewise, it can steadily increase the revival of endangered languages. Although English is the lingua franca of our time period, the same can be said of the latter if another language becomes prominent, say Chinese and English finding itself on the brink of extinction. 

 

Helping people find interest in exploring other cultures is important. Another way I envision helping preserve endangered languages can be through PSAs about the importance of diversity in most multinational businesses. Hiring people who can speak a variety of indigenous languages becomes a win-win situation. Attracting new consumers to a company and continuously practicing a dying language while being paid for it by the hour can bring many benefits that come along with it too. 

 

With that being said, there are endless possibilities and benefits in saving endangered languages. Although they might not seem worthy enough to bat an eye towards, the very notion and idea that they once existed to communicate with others should be interesting to one. Historians dedicate themselves to investigating the past, and by speaking these languages, we ourselves are included in the circle of life. As a person who speaks two languages and is currently self-teaching herself Korean and German, I have come to comprehend the beauty behind languages as it becomes a part of our daily lives. We use them to communicate our thoughts, our strongest emotions, and our culture, which mold us into the people we are. And quite frankly, I feel it’s something that we should give a lot of importance, which is something I want to incorporate in my Learning Cluster too. 

 

What the Essay Did Well

 

One of the positives of this essay is that the student’s interest in her chosen topic is evident in her writing. It is clear this student is well-informed about endangered languages and the reader learns that the student has pursued this topic both inside the classroom—”In my junior year, I researched indigenous languages”—and outside: “As a person who speaks two languages and is currently self-teaching herself Korean and German.” Since the student chose a topic highly relevant to herself, the essay reflects her passion and gives depth to her interest, showing admissions officers she is a driven and curious student.

 

This essay also does a good job of answering all the parts of the prompt. The prompt asks for (1) a question to investigate, (2) why you are passionate about that question or topic, and (3) how you plan to solve the issue you see. In the essay, we learn (1) the student wants to figure out how to conserve endangered languages, (2) she values language as an integral part of identity and as a link to the past, and (3) she wants  to study family trees and build awareness about other cultures to save endangered languages. 

 

What Could Be Improved

 

One area of this essay that needs to be improved is the grammar. In some cases there were obvious typos or words missing, like in this sentence: “A solution I thought of is not concrete as it could be tinkered with newer possibilities in the future.” In other cases, the sentence was still understandable but the grammar was incorrect, as with this sentence “Attracting new consumers to a company and continuously practicing a dying language while being paid for it by the hour can bring many benefits that come along with it too,” or this one, “Although they might not seem worthy enough to bat an eye towards”. 

 

Typos and grammatical errors can instantly diminish the professionalism and quality of your essay in the eyes of the admissions officers reading it. In order to prevent grammar from holding you back, make sure you proofread your essay multiple times and then give it to at least one other person to proofread it with a fresh set of eyes. Check out our free peer essay review to have someone read through your essay and catch your grammatical mistakes before you submit!

 

The other thing this essay could improve on is focusing the topic a bit more. It’s clear this student is interested in studying languages—indigenous, endangered, and commonly used—but she mentions so many different types of languages throughout the essay that it becomes a little distracting. It’s great that she expressed her passion for the topic of languages, but the essay could have been stronger if it pinpointed a specific aspect of indigenous languages that interested her (perhaps their importance in establishing familial connections) and suggested a focused solution to the topic she zeroed in on.

 

More Free Essay Resources

 

How to Write Soka University of America Essays: See our in-depth guide of each supplemental essay prompt for Soka University of America. 

 

All of Our Essay Guides: Don’t miss our essay guides for all of the top schools.

 

How to Write the Common App Essays: Learn how to write a strong Common App essay for each of the prompts, with examples.

 

Free CollegeVine Peer Essay Review: Submit your essay and get feedback from another student. Editing other students’ essays will also help you improve your own writing skills!

 

 


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Our college essay experts go through a rigorous selection process that evaluates their writing skills and knowledge of college admissions. We also train them on how to interpret prompts, facilitate the brainstorming process, and provide inspiration for great essays, with curriculum culled from our years of experience helping students write essays that work.