B.A., Art History
I am a freshman at Columbia, intending to double-concentrate in Economics and East Asian Studies
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Hometown Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Class of2023
First Gen College StudentNo

Results, Essays, and Advice

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Columbia University (New York, NY)

Applied for a B.A. in Art History

Accepted and Enrolled Legacy: No

School Specific Essays

Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.
Every full moon, my family would make offerings to our deceased ancestors. As the eldest son of the eldest son, I am given the distinct honour of having my name be the first called when praying to our ancestors. Even though I was younger than my cousins, my grandparents revered me more as I am to carry on the Phan bloodline. As a young child, I reveled in the extra attention and thought about how great it would be that...
Personal Statement
367 Words
Volunteer/public interest work
What have you done to make your school or your community a better place?
I observed Nam’s darting eyes across the canteen hall. After being shooed from table to table, Nam finally arrived at mine. “Uhhh is this seat t-t-taken”, he stammered. Nam was new at school and had trouble fitting in. His stuttering did not help as kids would make fun of him when they are not shunning him. Having once been the frail new kid, I was able to empathize with his vulnerabilities and invited him to sit with my friends...
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
315 Words
Please tell us what you value most about Columbia and why. (300 words or fewer)
I remember weaving through a sea of people holding UAW signs on my way to Low Library for the tour. Curious about what I saw, I immediately searched UAW and Columbia on my phone and learned that students were advocating for worker’s rights. Later that night, I did additional research on Columbia’s activist history and was excited to read about Columbia’s extensive history of student’s activism. As a gay Vietnamese, the 1968 protest over the school’s...
Supplemental Essay: Diversity statement
254 Words
(Optional) Duke's commitment to diversity and inclusion includes sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. If you would like to share with us more about how you identify as LGBTQIA+, and have not done so elsewhere in the application, we invite you to do so here. (250 words)

I witnessed Lam, a male-to-female transgender, being sexually assaulted after school. She was surrounded by a group of boys who pulled of her pants in public to “scan" her private parts. Others jeered as she stood there powerless and drenched in tears. Although I wanted to come to her aid, I did not for fear of exposing my sexual identity. After discovering she had dropped out, I was relieved that my secret was safe but ashamed I was as culpable...
Supplemental Essay: Intellectual interest
316 Words
If you are applying to Columbia College, tell us what from your current and past experiences (either academic or personal) attracts you specifically to the field or fields of study that you noted in the Member Questions section. If you are currently undecided, please write about any field or fields in which you may have an interest at this time.
From a young age, the arts allowed me to subliminally convey my feelings and express a much wider emotional range than language. Dark paintings encapsulated sad moments while bright paintings symbolized happy days. As I grew up, basic paintings evolved into evocative visual images. When I was 10, I saw the seashore being demolished by unchecked construction and mass tourism so I painted a sea monster engulfing passing ships to convey nature’s anger towards mankind. Moving into high school, I...
Supplemental Essay: Unique question posed by school
262 Words
What work of art, music, science, mathematics, or literature has surprised, unsettled, or challenged you, and in what way? (250 words)
“Still photographs are the most powerful weapon in the world.” – Eddie Adams Like most people, I was disturbed when I first saw Adams’ iconic war photo capturing the moment a bullet from South Vietnamese General Nguyen Loan’s pistol pierced the skull of a handcuffed Viet Cong prisoner. I was appalled by man’s inhumanity. I was angry to later learn that Loan was never trialled. If Nazis officers were prosecuted for their war crimes at Nuremburg, Loan should have...

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High School Performance

Unweighted GPA
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ActivitiesStudent Council / Government, Nonprofit, NGO or Charitable Organization, School Newspaper/Magazine/Journalism, Model Congress / Model UN, Art
Elaborate on Extracurriculars or Work

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Volunteer Experiences
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