When I was young, I was a bookworm. By second grade, I had read all the books in the Harry Potter series, and I was constantly hungry for more. Whenever I was bored, I would pull out a book and start reading. Books called to me like sirens; their soft pages and flexible spines begging me to open and bend and crease. I would read surreptitiously in class, hiding my book underneath my desk, and when I was supposed to be sleeping, I would take a flashlight and read under the covers. I was obsessed.
As I grew older and technology advanced, reading became less important to me. My library card expired and stayed that way. Even now, I don’t read as much as I wish I did. But I still value how much reading has enriched my life. My vocabulary is extensive, and English is my favorite subject. I love sharing stories with people and expressing myself through words.
This love of English even motivated me to apply for the Neubauer Adelante Summer Scholars Program at UChicago. This program only accepts students of Hispanic heritage and offers courses in Biology and Writing. The writing course, Collegiate Writing: Awakening into Consciousness, requires students to read reputable texts like the Bhagavad-Gita and the Four Quartets. The professor believes in Socratic discussions where we (the students) grappled with the texts and wrote complex essays based on philosophical concepts. My experience in Chicago with Hispanic Americans like me was amazing and enlightening due to the ideas and interpretations shared by everyone in class. My love of reading made this summer program even better because I was able to share my thoughts and feelings about the texts with like-minded people.