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Student Success Story

2017 Alumni Association Scholarship Essay

By Alex Li, SIS/BA '21

My mom is both a caregiver and advisor to me. She was an AU Eagle. I applied to American University because of her. She inspires me because of her passion to learn which was sparked by her years learning and working at AU. She provided inspiration when teaching and caring for each everyone within the family. My outlook in life is mainly shaped under her guidance because she is a very good listener.


My mom is a caregiver in many ways. She provides care for myself, dad, and my sister who has a disability. She carries out special teaching strategies for my sister after school daily. Also, she is quick and decisive with an eagle's eye when a problem arises. She has also taught me thinking strategies for problems which I could use when solving problems. For instance, she has provided me with thinking strategies about how to look from different angles and to open my mind when solving problems. I have taken this strategy to heart and have applied it to important decisions. I have used this strategy by asking my mother where she went to college and AU was no doubt on my list of best choices.


My mom also provides me with advice during my life. She tells me how to do certain tasks and chores at home and when shopping. She even evaluates and guides me when I make mistakes or gives me improvement advice when I succeed. She tries to incorporate her own teachings from what she learned in anthropology from AU when we travel or talk. For instance, she uses her skills she learned at AU to explain to me new concepts for social interactions and cultural groups. Furthermore, my mother keeps reminding me to "look at the bigger frame of things." This made me consider what I wanted to do after college. I then considered how my mom graduated from AU and how I could follow her in her footsteps.


My mother graduated with degrees in Anthropology and Business. The journey at AU has ignited her passion to learn. Her degrees have given her credibility and expertise which she uses to teach me and my sister when we are at home. I have taken to model her passion for learning and excelled to learn as hard as her in school. Also, my mom worked hard during AU as an assistant to academic counselors. Her job placement has allowed me to consider AU as a promising place to work and study at the same time.


Overall, my mom provides advice and cares for our family and is a fantastic person. She has also showed me that working toward my dreams is an ongoing process and not just a goal. Also, her accomplishments and teachings can mainly be attributed to her study and work at AU. Her passion to learn has given me incentive to discover and consider AU as a main choice for college. Therefore, mom's commitment has given me insight that AU can provide an excellent and worthwhile education to any student.


This scholarship will impact me in a number of ways. For instance, I will be able to use this money to pay off any loans and focus more on my education. I will also be able to uses this scholarship to help me fund trips overseas like the study abroad program. Furthermore, I would be able to use this money for research-based projects or altruistic purposes. That is how this scholarship will impact my life in collage.


I plan to impact the AU community by planning to incorporate technology for humanitarian purposes or research. I will spend my time at AU doing community service and possibly helping students with disabilities. Furthermore, I would like to improve and increase the knowledge of incorporating technology like flying rescue devices or health monitor machines during my stay at AU. For example, if I introduce a faster method or device which is cheap and automated to send supplies or medical equipment to a remote location, I could save and sustain lives while acquiring funding from the government or another institution easily. This will create an impact on the AU community by allowing technology to be another avenue for helping and assisting people. Therefore, that is how I will impact the AU community.