This is a personal blog and should be taken as such. So don't sue me if what I write pisses you off. Or if I write lies. Or if I give maladvice. Or if you fail to read through my sarcasm. Et cetera.
I like stalkers.
Is it in bad taste to quote one's self?
"The greatest of debaters are not only the most eloquent -- they are the most bruised, the most resilient, the strongest of heart." -- Andrew Loh
Quotes "How many times have you chickened out?" - Qu Hsueh Ming
"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds." - Albert Einstein
"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile - hoping it will eat him last." - Sir Winston Churchill
"Affirmative action is something the good don't need and the bad don't deserve" - A wise man
"The men who create power make an indispensable contribution to the Nation's greatness, but the men who question power make a contribution just as indispensable, especially when that questioning is disinterested, for they determine whether we use power or power uses us." - John F. Kennedy
"The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were." - John F. Kennedy
"I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually." - James A. Baldwin
"Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is but a broken winged bird that cannot fly." - Langston Hughes
"Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference." - Sir Winston Churchill
"Dreams are true while they last, and do we not live in dreams?" - Alfred Lord Tennyson
"Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education alone will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race." - John Calvin Coolidge
"We will either find a way or make one." - Hannibal
"Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake." - Napoleon Bonaparte
"For evil to triumph, it is only necessary for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
"War begins in the minds of men, and it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must first be constructed." - UNESCO Constitution
"The proper study of mankind is man." - Alexander Pope
"My kind of loyalty was loyalty to one's country, not to its institutions or its officeholders. The country is the real thing, the substantial thing, the eternal thing; it is the thing to watch over, and care for, and be loyal to; institutions are extraneous, they are its mere clothing, and clothing can wear out, become ragged, cease to be comfortable, cease to protect the body from winter, disease, and death." - Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens): A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
"Patriotism is to support your country all the time and your government when it deserves it" - Mark Twain
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world. The unreasonable man persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man." - George Bernard Shaw
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw
"Democracy is a system ensuring that the people are governed no better than they deserve." - George Bernard Shaw
"If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all." -- Noam Chomsky
"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." - George Orwell
"When the people fear the government, you have tyranny. When the government fears the people, you have freedom." - Thomas Paine
"I sense a learning: that much dumber people than you end up in charge. Look at the way things are. I'm no fucken genius or anything, but these spazzos are in charge of my every twitch. What I'm starting to think is maybe only the dumb are safe in this world, the ones who roam with the herd, without thinking about every little thing. But see me? I have to think about every little fucken thing." - Vernon God Little, Act II
(In Malaysian schools -- if you're studying overseas, some limitations might not apply)
As of December 25, 2007, MACEE is offering their Opportunity Initiative Award. If you do get this award, it can pay for everything. If you don't get this award, then everything in this article still applies to you.
When you apply to US colleges, you will have five major expenditures.
1. Standardized Testing: SAT/ACT 2. Language Proficiency Testing: TOEFL/IELTS 3. Score Reports for Testing(s) 4. Application Fees 5. Postage
I offer you choices; choices you can take to minimize your costs.
1. Standardized Testing (unwaivable)
You'll have to pay this in full. While the College Board (SAT) and ACT have ostensible fee waivers, they are only for American students.
2. Language Proficiency Testing (waivable)
This is optional, in my experience. TOEFL and IELTS are evil money-sucking companies. I emailed the colleges:
-------------- To whom it may concern, I am an international applicant and I scored a 35 on the ACT English section. I speak English at home, and it is also the language I am most proficient in. Can the TOEFL requirement be waived? Thank you, Andrew Loh ------------------------ Responses: --------------------------- Duke: Hi Andrew......ABSOLUTELY!!!! With a 35 on the ACT English section, we will not need to see a TOEFL score. Thanks for asking. --------------------- Yale: Then don't worry about it. If your first language is English then don't worry about the TOEFL. ------------------------- Macalester: We can waive TOEFL. Please once again remind us regarding your request for the waiver after we have received your ACT results and your application. ----------------------- Cornell: The test is waived if students have a score of 670 or higher on the SAT Critical Reading Test. ------------------------ From my CommonApp: Note that by definition, my "mother tongue" is Chinese, whereas my "first language", "language spoken at home" and "language most proficient in" is English, and my "medium of education" is Malay.
P/S Nag: You're applying to US unis lah. Take lah some initiative. And muka tembok=good. Jangan shy shy.
3. Score Reports for Testing(s) (unwaivable)
Again, evil corporations.
4. Application Fees (waivable)
I received fee waivers from all the schools to which I applied with this request.
COUNSELOR APPROVED FEE WAIVER First Name: Middle Name: Last Name: Combined family annual income: Number of dependents listed for tax purposes: Additional circumstances: The total fee for all college applications, postage of supporting documents and score reports would be approximately USD ___ . At the current exchange rate of _____ Ringgit Malaysia to one USD, the sum would be approximately equivalent to RM ____ – an enormous amount of money – about a ____ of ___'s family's monthly income. A waiver for application fees would greatly alleviate this financial hardship.
__________ Counselor SMK Bunuhlah Pengetahuan Moral
If applicable, you can include other arguments. These could be country-specific (macro) or family-specific (micro). E.g. (choi, 大吉利事):
My father just lost his job.
My mother was recently hospitalised.
My parents have to support all four of my grandparents and my parents are their only children.
I work 10 hours a week to support my family.
My country's inflation rate has increased 1000% in the last 5 years because of foolish economic policies.
Officials just demolished my house.
A big fat recession is hurting my country's economy -- our GDP has shrunk __% in the past __ years.
A fire/tsunami/volcano eruption/earthquake destroyed my entire neighbourhood.
DO NOT FORGE this document or make up facts, because you could be thrown out of college if you do. Talk to your counselor before anything, and you might want to include this exact phrase (somewhere) in your request:
"I have spoken to my university advisor about my situation, and he encouraged me to compose this fee waiver request."
5. Postage (minimizable)
I used Pos Malaysia, normal air mail. Pretty reliable, in my experience, making courier companies like DHL and FedEx and their more expensive charges irrelevant. Remember that application deadlines are based on the postmarks, which mean that if your applications are stamped on Jan 1, it doesn't matter whether they reach the universities on Jan 3 or Jan 15.
"Sikit-sikit lama-lama jadi bukit."
Remember that the above are just samples, and that you can and should change phrases/explanations if need be. Personalise your requests.
Also remember that these tips are for Malaysian students applying to US colleges from Malaysian schools, and if you study somewhere else some tips may not be applicable.
I hope this helps, and good luck to all applicants, especially the kiamsiap.