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Despite the fact that my mother is an American, she taught me nothing other than the alphabet in English since she raised me in Brazil and she was very fluent in Portuguese. When I first moved to the USA at 17, I was unable to even differentiate between the sounds of "t" and "d" and was picked on in High School because of the way that I was struggling to speak. The other students even mimicked me. This was a most delicate and traumatic experience that has ultimately motivated me to a lifetime of service helping young people learn to communicate.
What I love most in life is my university; the University of XXXX where I will be earning my undergraduate degree in our field this coming May of 2015. I have also been working in our neurolinguistics lab for a full year now. My life in the USA got off to a difficult start and I feel strongly that I would most excel in graduate school in Speech Language Therapy here at the UXX, which I call home and I love it so.
A sentence that I read on the XXXX website sums up my philosophy of life: “Our Goal is to improve lives, one story at a time.” Throughout my undergraduate studies, especially at UXX, I have refined my scientific and clinical skills, most of all as a student but also through my work in the neurolinguistics lab. This is why I feel that I will be able to excel in your program and integrate my research experience into creative avenues of further exploration as a graduate student in SLP.
I came to the USA from my native Brazil just in time to learn English and finish High School on time. My father is Brazilian and is a horse trainer. When my father got a job in the USA and we moved here permanently, English became most immediately relevant. Reading was easy to pick up but writing was much more difficult. This is one of the reasons why my first attempts at a college education were fraught with problems and setbacks. My mother was diagnosed with cancer, my father struggling with very limited success to start his own business, and me working as a waitress at night instead of studying and sleeping were also major contributing factors. Most of all, however, it was athletics, my membership on the equestrian team. Ultimately I had to choose between being an equestrian and being a student and I chose the latter. I will soon be graduating with my Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Disorders from UXX and I am most pleased to have redeemed myself academically, since I have earned only one ‘A-‘: the rest are A’s.
Perhaps at some point in my career I will again incorporate horses into my professional goals. I had a wonderful experience with my mother volunteering with an Equi Therapy Program that helped Kids with Down syndrome, Cerebral palsy etc—this experience stays with me. To see the joy in those children’s eyes when they were around horses was priceless. Most of those children had some sort of communication impairment/disorder.
During this time I also had the privileged of speaking with a speech therapist who was also a volunteer. She told me that I should check out the SLP field. I am pleased to have done so. I thank you for considering my application.