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Isra Ahmed
Richardson, TX
January 2018

College is my Gate to Opportunity - Varsity Tutors Scholarship Essay

Opportunity is the reason I wish to attend college. To me, opportunity means having the ability to choose from different options which will each lead to an experience that will make me a better person. Attending college puts me in a room filled with numerous doors leading to great things I might have never dreamed of for myself. It gives me opportunity.
Growing up, my family and I moved around a lot for a couple of different reasons including my education. Moving around every few years meant that my parents could not invest in a proper home for us all and we usually lived on a very tight budget, something that’s been getting tougher as my siblings and I started attending university. Despite having to save at every opportunity we got, we were blessed to get the chance to live in popular cities such as Dubai and Toronto. I was always surrounded by those who were better off, and I blessed to have the opportunity to witness firsthand how horrible, yet nice life can be.
I grew up in this weird middle ground where as an individual, I was below poverty level, and as a family, we were in the lower middle-class range and able to afford the basics. Because my family could afford the necessities, I didn’t fit in with the poor either. But I lived in or near the rich neighborhoods, so my friends and other community members were from a different lifestyle who could afford to go to Starbucks every day without thinking twice. My family and I found ways to blend in, but it was never quite the same. I always felt like an outsider in my own town. I basically grew up with one foot in muddy quicksand and with the other in the shoe of a princess.
I’ve only recently realized that growing up this way has just been a blessing in disguise this whole time. I understand what it is like to struggle and I have better financial sense than the majority of those my age. I recognize the problems that those who weren’t fortunate enough to be born in a stable family face and I know how to best solve them. I also know how beautiful and enjoyable life can be when financial stability is achieved and how much I can help everyone reach a good place at that position.
I have gained a wealth of knowledge through my experiences and I plan to gain even more by attending college. I wish to use this knowledge to open the doors of opportunity, so I can finally have both feet in one world and be strong enough to turn around and help lift others still stuck in the quicksand. I am studying software engineering and I can only get the keys to the doors of opportunity, knowledge and experience, by attending college. College is my gate of opportunity to a better world where everyone can live comfortably as they should.