Free College Admissions Essays: Hockey or Harvard? Essay
College Admissions EssaysHockey or Harvard?
In 1993, the Harold C. Case Scholarship for outstanding academic achievement was awarded to fourteen students in the Boston University junior class. I was one of two students in the College of Communication and one of two students in the School of Management to receive the award. I view this award as recognition of the difficult journey I undertook to become the first person in the history of Boston University to combine a broadcast journalism degree with a business degree. Although the university allowed students to pursue dual degrees, it was highly discouraged for someone to attempt to dual major in two professional schools. Some people believed that I was stubborn when I would not accept this. By carefully planning my courses from the start to satisfy the requirements of both degrees and by enlisting the support of key advisors, I succeeded in four years.
For many years, my claim to fame was that I had never been outside the Eastern time zone. That changed in 1996 when I flew to San Francisco, but I still had never left the confines of North America. One of my mentors at AT&T, Bill Kurtz, frequently stressed the importance of spending time abroad. He spent two years working in Japan for AT&T. Despite being in a long-term relationship, I considered going abroad. Through AT&T’s Financial Leadership Program, I had the opportunity to spend six months working in Hong Kong. My fiancee and I arranged our travel schedules so that we never went more than two months without seeing each other. I immersed myself in the Chinese culture. I ate the world’s finest dim sum. I participated on an AT&T dragon boat team which raced at Stanley Beach. I played the Chinese domino game of Pai Gow in the Hotel Lisboa in Macau. I also observed the differences which can exist between cultures. Had I not gone to Hong Kong, I would never have grasped these differences as completely. Experiencing them firsthand made them more real and easier to remember.
At the age of 17, I set a goal that I wanted to be a hockey play-by-play broadcaster. I sought out the advice of Mike Emrick, the play-by-play voice of the Philadelphia Flyers. The point he emphasized was to make sure I had a backup plan. This was one of the driving forces behind my pursuit of a business degree to complement my communications degree. While at Boston University, I spent all four years at the student radio station, working my way up from a News Reporter as a freshman, to Sports Director as a sophomore, and finally to my goal of a hockey play-by-play broadcaster for my junior and senior years. After graduation, I quickly learned how difficult the professional broadcasting job market is. The closest I came to landing a position was a second interview with the Jacksonville Lizard Kings in the minor hockey leagues.
Thus, I went with my backup plan, and accepted a position at AT&T. The rewards of that decision have been plentiful, but I did not give up on my dream. I volunteered on weekends to do statistics for the professional coverage of the Princeton University Tigers. After two seasons, my predecessor Adam Wodon left to take a position with the Quad City Mallards in Iowa. I took over as his replacement, earning my first opportunity to broadcast hockey professionally. With that professional credential on my resume, I am positive I will continue to be marketable in the hockey broadcasting field.