The UPH Music Therapy Essay Writing Competition is the first writing competition that I have participated in. Upon receiving the offer, I felt very much uneasy due to the pressure of it being a national competition. In addition to me being a high school sophomore, I have yet to compete with other more professional, even older high school writers whose skills are definitely more advanced. Nonetheless, I decided to challenge myself and apply as a participant. I chose a music-related topic that plays an important role in my life, which is the title of the essay itself, Music and Vulnerability: A Secret Friend. I remember having a hard time in meeting the word count, so Mr. Himawan suggested that I analyze a song. Eventually, I inserted my short analysis of one of my favorite songs, and connected its theme to the current global issue. After generating around twenty draft versions, I ultimately sent the best one to my beta readers, hoping to get meaningful feedback in return. Finally, I revised and proofread my essay (taking the respective readers’ recommendations into account) before submitting my final draft to the committee—with shaky hands and a rapid-beating heart. After two weeks of waiting, thanks to the help of my peers and teachers, I managed to get the runner-up position. Even though it’s not the top achievement of the competition, by gaining first-hand experience of competing in something that I’m passionate about and getting acknowledged upon it, I realized that doubt should be the last thing for us to come up with when we think about ourselves. Because from my perspective, while age and experience do bring wisdom, enthusiasm brings hope.
Nadya Suryo Soetomo – Grade 10
Below is my essay “Music in Everyday Life”