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仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes



17岁的美国华裔女孩萧靖彤(Cassandra Hsiao)就收到了所有藤校的录取通知书。

仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


I'm still processing it. It's not something you expect when you open these college messages on your portal. I saw a yes and a yes, a congratulations after a congratulations. It's totally surreal. I'm still sinking in. I had a moment to myself yesterday where I was just sobbing.我还在消化这个消息。在邮箱打开这些高校发来的邮件时,你可不敢想象会有这样的惊喜。我看到了一个接一个的“yes”,一个接一个的“congratulations”。这太不真实了!我还没完全反应过来。我昨天一个人待了一会儿,一直在哭。



仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes




仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes




In our house, English is not English. Not in the phonetic sense, like short a is for apple, but rather in the pronunciation – in our house, snake is snack. Words do not roll off our tongues correctly – yet I, who was pulled out of class to meet with language specialists, and my mother from Malaysia, who pronounces film as flim, understand each other perfectly.


In our house, there is no difference between cast and cash, which was why at a church retreat, people made fun of me for “cashing out demons.” I did not realize the glaring difference between the two Englishes until my teacher corrected my pronunciations of hammock, ladle, and siphon. Classmates laughed because I pronounce accept as except, success as sussess. I was in the Creative Writing conservatory, and yet words failed me when I needed them most.

在我们家,“cast”(抛掷)和“cash”(现金)没有分别,这就是为什么在教会退休会,人们常常取笑我说的“cashing out demons”(本应为“casting out demons”,赶鬼)。我一直没有意识到这两个英语单词之间的差异,直到老师纠正了我的hammock、ladle、和siphon的发音,才恍然大悟。同学们笑我,因为我将accept(接受)读成except(除外),将success读成sussess。尽管我参加了创意写作,但常常词不达意。

仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes

Suddenly, understanding flower is flour wasn’t enough. I rejected the English that had never seemed broken before, a language that had raised me and taught me everything I knew. Everybody else’s parents spoke with accents smarting of Ph.D.s and university teaching positions. So why couldn’t mine?


My mother spread her sunbaked hands and said, “This is where I came from,” spinning a tale with the English she had taught herself.


When my mother moved from her village to a town in Malaysia, she had to learn a brand new language in middle school: English. In a time when humiliation was encouraged, my mother was defenseless against the cruel words spewing from the teacher, who criticized her paper in front of the class. When she began to cry, the class president stood up and said, “That’s enough.”


“Be like that class president,” my mother said with tears in her eyes. The class president took her under her wing and patiently mended my mother’s strands of language. “She stood up for the weak and used her words to fight back.”


仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


We were both crying now. My mother asked me to teach her proper English so old white ladies at Target wouldn’t laugh at her pronunciation. It has not been easy. There is a measure of guilt when I sew her letters together. Long vowels, double consonants — I am still learning myself. Sometimes I let the brokenness slide to spare her pride but perhaps I have hurt her more to spare mine.


As my mother’s vocabulary began to grow, I mended my own English. Through performing poetry in front of 3000 at my school’s Season Finale event, interviewing people from all walks of life, and writing stories for the stage, I stand against ignorance and become a voice for the homeless, the refugees, the ignored.


With my words I fight against jeers pelted at an old Asian street performer on a New York subway. My mother’s eyes are reflected in underprivileged ESL children who have so many stories to tell but do not know how. I fill them with words as they take needle and thread to make a tapestry.


In our house, there is beauty in the way we speak to each other. In our house, language is not broken but rather bursting with emotion. We have built a house out of words. There are friendly snakes in the cupboard and snacks in the tank. It is a crooked house. It is a little messy. But this is where we have made our home.



仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


Identity and the desire to belong are two of the most relatable struggles that people face. I wanted to share a slice of our home life, my relationship with my mother and both of our stories.对身份认同感和归属感的渴望和挣扎是最能让人产生共鸣的东西。我想和他人分享我的家庭生活的一个侧面,我和母亲的感情和我们俩的经历。


"My mother is my role model. She keeps me grounded and inspires me not only to dream big but to take action to make those dreams come true. I love her passion for life, her boldness, her compassion and her honesty."我母亲是我的榜样,她让我脚踏实地,她激励我不光要有梦想,还要采取实际行动让梦想成真。我爱她对生活的热情、她的勇敢、她的悲悯和她的诚实。



网友Leon Burke在Facebook上说:

"Getting accepted into all eight Ivy League schools is amazing and after reading your essay, I can't think of anyone who deserves it more than you do."被所有8所常春藤学校录取真的是不可思议,但看过你的文章以后,我觉得没有人比你更值得这样的成就。


萧靖彤目前就读于橙县艺术学校(Orange County School of the Arts),她的GPA高达4.67,SAT成绩更是高达1540。


仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


“I’m an entertainment journalist. Some may see it as a lower form of journalism, but I think it should be held up to all other types of journalists. We can frame celebrities in a light that will inspire followers to follow their dreams.”我是一名娱乐记者,有些人可能觉得这是低人一等的记者。但我觉得娱记和其他记者都应得到同样重视。我们可以选择一些角度来报道明星,从而激励大众为梦想奋斗。


仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes




仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


I miss Malaysia and think about my home country quite often. Growing up, I loved flying kites, going to markets and setting off firecrackers. I spent my childhood babbling in a mixture of Chinese, Malay and English.



仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes




仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes


In the next couple of weeks, I will be visiting certain schools and exploring their programmes, learning from professors and talking with students to find a place that will be a comfortable, lovely and supportive home for the next four years.在接下来的几周里,我将访问几所学校,了解他们的课程,向教授们学习,并和学生们进行交谈,为之后的四年寻找一个舒适、可爱而且支持我的家。

仅凭一篇英文作文!17岁华裔女孩让8所美国常青藤名校都say Yes