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Diversity Essay

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I had to write on the same topic when I applied to NC State as an undergrad; I basically said that "diversity" is a vague notion in that it does not specify what should or should not be diverse (skin color, religions, ideas, shoe sizes...). I then said that the standard attempts to create a "diverse campus" were, in effect, racism and that it was the content of a person's mind that made them who they were. Over and above that, I think I indicated that even intellectual diversity was not a good thing as such and that truth should shape the ideal climate of a good university.

Whatever, I was 17. I was accepted, btw.

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I never had a diversity question on an application. The weirdest application question I had was from the University of Chicago (which prides itself on weird application topics, apparently):

"We have seen odd questions, very odd questions, and ridiculous questions, but the only interesting answers are those that destory the question. Destroy a question with your answer."

Other odd ones (all from the University of Chicago):

"Mind that does not stick." (That was the whole question, and no I didn't leave any words out.)

"Some physicists advocate string theory. But strings have always played an important role in our lives, from the string in the Minotaur's lair, to the single thread holding the sword of Damocles, to a kitten playing with a ball of yarn, to the basic awfulness of string cheese, to the concept of stringing someone along. Use string to explain the biggest or smallest phemonena."

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... ...weird application topics, apparently):

"We have seen odd questions, very odd questions, and ridiculous questions, but the only interesting answers are those that destory the question. Destroy a question with your answer."

That reminds me of a high-school essay. The topic was "Which is the greater evil: The love of money, or the lust for money?"

As a recent convert to Objectivism, my long answer could be summed up as "neither".

A few days later, in front of the whole class, the teacher said: "You wrote an excellent essay. I gave you 80%, which is max. I ever give anyone for an essay. Then, considering that you technically did not answer the question posed by the topic, I followed the national correction guidelines and marked you out of 50 instead of 100. So, you got 80% for the essay on the topic you chose; but. you're only getting 40% today."

I was a pretty proud 15 year old that day!

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I've had quite a bit of experience having to write what my tutors want to hear (had three essays handed back) so I know how you feel, I would recommend telling them what they want to hear but I realise that it isn't fair that we live in world that is supposedly for the free thinking but clearly isn't. However don't feel guilty that you have to work on their terms; remeber that to them everything is relative therefore nothing has any meaning therefore write an essay that whilst crafted to make all the right sounds doesn't commit you to anything in particular, firstly they'll probably love it and secondly you haven't sacrificed your integrity. hope that helps.

I've just read when this was posted, I'm a year to late.

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