Pushed Me Out of My Comfort Zone and Forced Me to Perform and Sing in Public
Being a choir student for 7 years has taught me how to lead by example. When I entered high school, I was a reserved person. However, advancing into elite choirs pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to publicly speak and sing, even when it was intimidating. Being elected alto section leader freshman year caused me to mature faster due to the high expectations and time commitment involved. Now that I am in the top choir at my school, I demonstrate leadership by leading my section with good morals and values.
I encourage them to sing out at all times and never be afraid to make mistakes because making mistakes is the only way we can learn. If one of my classmates is going through a personal crisis, I go out of my way to comfort them. This makes my classmates confide in me more. In doing so, I learned that leadership relies on vulnerability; showing up and helping my classmates, even when I’m unsure of the correct notes or feel unmotivated that day. By embracing my uncertainty, my section feels permitted to confront their fears and sing out, despite the outcome. As a result, I have managed to help build a stronger secure section and develop deeper relationships with my classmates. My small contributions have had great effects.
For example, when our choir performs, we are extremely expressive and musical, secure in the fact that none of us are perfect, and that mistakes are okay. However, I cannot take all the credit. Everyone in the choir plays a role in our musical success. Furthermore, leadership is about recognizing everyone’s strengths and weaknesses and using them to help each other grow. Although I didn’t take on any specific leadership roles in choir this year, I make it my duty to contribute to the choir without being asked. I often suggest that our choir schedule rehearsals without our directors, so we can get extra practice and bond more. It is primarily my role to lead and organize these rehearsals. By taking leadership of the classroom, I have learned more about myself and matured into a more confident person.
I see myself continuing these efforts at UT Austin by: taking it upon myself to make something better if I see it can be improved, leading by example in the classroom by asking ‘risky’ questions, and helping my classmates when they don’t understand the material. The leadership experience I gained throughout high school can benefit me professionally as I major in biology with aspirations of becoming a pediatrician.