College Application Essays Part - 4
Stanford the dream!!!
Hi before I start I wanted to say these are the essays I procrastinated and worked hardest on and am super proud of them!!!
What is the most significant challenge that society faces today?
The tendency to ascribe collectives (such as census, citizen, crowd) to diverse bodies, depriving people of complexity, emotion, and thought—in short, essence. Morphing humanity into tiny, governable datasets—vectors and matrices—is a turn toward the inanimate. We need a philosophy of “population” that condenses masses without losing nuance.
How did you spend your last two summers?
2022: mastered Boketto (花束), investigated its cultural inferences in “dolce far niente”; correlated Kate Murphy’s You’re Not Listening to growing teenage loneliness; conversed about long division with my 7-year-old cousin.
2023: spontaneous late-night ice cream expeditions (tried 38 new flavors!); distracted kids at ABA-therapy sessions with my assistant ventriloquist, Max.
What historical moment or event do you wish you could have witnessed?
Until 1953, the brain’s functioning was envisioned as Descartes did: a dualistic dance devoid of dopamine's dynamics. Olde and Milner’s discovery of the brain’s reward mechanism introduced verifiable, replicable facts about human behavior. Ether, essence, and soul serve no purpose in a rationalist field, and that shift must’ve been electrifying.
Briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities, a job you hold, or responsibilities you have for your family.
Artificial neural networks are modeled on the brain. But whose brain? Neurotypical data governs most AI models, which replicate dominant biases and stereotypes. Working with neurodivergent children at BloomingWords, I witnessed how each brain processes the world uniquely. AI must be trained in neurodivergence to interpret all kinds of intelligence.
List five things that are important to you.
The one sock that gets lost in the laundry—if teleportation is real, this is proof.
The WiFi password.
My playlist of songs that I swear I’ll listen to someday.
An overstuffed fridge with Mom’s handmade sweets.
Always finding the levity in a situation.
The Stanford community is deeply curious and driven to learn in and out of the classroom. Reflect on an idea or experience that makes you genuinely excited about learning.
Her hands pulled me toward floating tables. Why couldn’t I find the words to express how I felt? Where were we?
Receding like clouds clearing out after heavy rain, the fantastical illusion slipped away as I awakened to greet concrete reality.
Most people forget their dreams within 5-10 minutes of waking up. While some psychologists attribute this amnesia to dreams being stored in short-term memory, others blame a lack of norepinephrine. Although most dreams vanish, certain ones tend to remain. The DL-PFC, lighting up like a Christmas tree, remembers these enchanting visions. Many of my dreams have been unnerving nightmares, owing to the lack of oxygen reaching my brain due to adenoids. But when I have dreams like this, I ensure to fasten them down amid graphite and paper.
I’ve long wondered what lies underneath these lucid covers.
Although no neuroscientist, Roald Dahl taught me how dreams give bodies to our clandestine desires. I’ve tried to pull them into the waking world.
Through research, I’ve analyzed brain activity during social interactions, how it “syncs” when in conversation. I’ve explored others’ dreams, curiously interpreting their complex symbolism through Freudian and Jungian theories. I’ve attempted to give them room to flourish through Terendipity, my online platform for teenagers who seek belonging.
Would being able to play a more conscious role in our dreams affect our agency in real life? What if we could “share” dreams? The possibilities are exciting, and endless.
Nurturing dreams at Stanford, I’ll breathe life into them.
Virtually all of Stanford's undergraduates live on campus. Write a note to your future roommate that reveals something about you or that will help your roommate – and us – get to know you better
Dear bhai (“brother,” but it’s a gender-neutral colloquialism where I’m from!),
You might think I’m singing while on a call with my parents. Among us, introductions are not discerned by terse acknowledgments, but by varying intonations not unlike that of a sinusoidal wave.
[Andante: In the key of “I’ve-just-woken-up-and-have-a-hot-cup-of-tea-in-my-hand”]
4———isan—————theek———a?—| [How are you?]
4——Ka———baadu——sab—b———| [I’m good! You?]
They might ask to speak to you at times, to warn you against my “innocent” face! They’ll tell you how I’m constantly guilty of hiding chocolates in pockets to surprise my future self with treats, and accusing Max the Lion of crimes he didn’t commit. Well, no comment.
When I’m not pleading the fifth, I’m known to orchestrate riveting conversations across orthogonal tangents to probe profound questions like: Why are we here? What goes first—milk or cereal? I’ve formalized them into a party trick: “50-Questions-to-Hack-Any-Social-Relationship.”
You’ll often find me reading virtually anything, even manufacturing details on the back of corn syrup. Through reading, I make discoveries about the universe, or how corn from Chandigarh is cornier than the maize from Maharashtra. I’m also fiercely territorial about my books; they’re all marked with personalized stamps. I’ll share them with you on one condition: You MUST give me your list of “TOP 50” (or songs—either would do).
I’m an avid proponent of nonverbal communication. Whether in charades or mid-robbery-where-you’ve-gotta-hide-under-beds, having our personal sign language can come in quite handy.
That’s it about me. There’s so much more—these words only mark the beginning.
Please describe what aspects of your life experiences, interests and character would help you make a distinctive contribution as an undergraduate to Stanford University