Let’s take a journey back in time to when you were a jittery high school senior fretting over college applications. Between juggling your ten thousand different extra-curricular activities and too many AP classes, you had to fill out the multitude of college applications in hopes to of getting accepted into the college of your choosing. Most importantly, you cannot forget the about the FASFA and the CSS Profile, which asked a million and ten questions to see if you qualified for financial aid. With all the stress of writing those various college essays, you probably created a standard format and added specific detail depending on the college you were sending your essay to. So do you remember what you told the Admissions Office of why you wanted to study at Boston University?
If you suddenly realize you have a lapse in your memory don’t freak out, most students around campus have probably forgotten what they wrote on their admissions essay. However, I can recall perfectly what I scribed on my computer’s word processor. I remember drafting up ideas that would make my answer unique and hopefully catch the eye of the admissions rep reading my essay. I knew that prospective students were mostly likely writing that they wanted to attend Boston University because it was in a major metropolitan area, that it was a research intensive institution, or even because BU had a plethora of resources to offer its students. My essay not only needed to be atypical, but it also needed to represent who I was as an individual. After some time of introspection I realized that above anything else I valued civil rights and equal justice. This couples well with my idol and role model Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. When I found out that MLK graduated from BU, I knew instantly of why I wanted to attend Boston University. I wanted to walk the very same hallways that Dr. King once passed through and be in the presence of his legacy. I knew that as an alumnus of BU, I would have the one in a life time opportunity of fulling Dr. King’s dream.
Though I have come to love BU, recently I was reminded of exactly why I wanted to attend this fine institution. Most people don’t know that the largest collection of Dr. King artifacts, second to that of King’s family, is here at BU. In 1964, MLK donated his papers and personal memorabilia to Boston University so that they could be safely preserved throughout the years. The Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center has done an excellent job of giving BU students exclusive access to the King Collection. Each year the center opens it doors to lets students hold and analyze a small sample of Dr. King’s pictures, letters, and papers. Several weeks ago I had the opportunity to partake in the HGARC annual MLK showcase, and it was completely magical. When I put the white gloves necessary to touch the historic documents and flipped through Dr. King’s college notebooks I was in complete reverence. I got to hold the first picture taken of him when arrived at Boston University. The most incredible artifact I glanced at was the note Rosa Parks sent to King. No other school in the United States or abroad could have offered me what I experienced being in front of King’s papers. As I walked out the exhibit, I looked over to my mentor Ms. Katherine Kennedy, Director of the Howard Thurman Center, and said, “This is exactly why I wanted to come to BU.” Her tenderly smile reaffirmed that I had made the right decision in coming to Boston University.
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