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Sample Admission Essay on Failure Experience

Tell us about a situation where you have not been successful and what you have learned from the experience

I remember the days when I was working on my final year project of electrical engineering. We were directed to make voice controlled wheel chair. Me and my friend were the only ones working on this project. Normally we used to have four to five project partners. My friend and I were tensed due to the close deadline and the amount of work to be done.

First phase was planning, which we did without much worry but errors started to appear in that phase. We kept on doing simulation and report work. We submitted the first project report and our instructor was satisfied with our performance. After that we got little slowdown due to personal matters. Only one month was remaining now. Now we started working with full pace and enthusiasm. Ten days before deadline, we were ready with the electrical circuits and voice recognition software. But our mechanical design was totally flawed and didn’t match our electrical circuit. The amplifiers used couldn’t take up the load of heavy wheel chair. Our instructor didn’t help us as well. Date of project exhibition came and we were not able to integrate everything together. We could only show the voice recognition part and mechanical gears installed in the wheel chair separately. Anyways, the project inspectors pointed out some mistakes and said they liked our effort. We got average marks but we were not disappointed as we had learnt on practice how to manage a project.

We learnt that key to project management is planning and time management. Planning phase is the base of everything. Calculations and simulations should be perfect and should be according to the practical demands. Planning of each design should be done separately first and then collectively. Different teachers should be consulted regarding the details of project. In my personal experience teachers other than one’s consultant teacher are more willing to help and they can provide better opinions.

Time management is another area where we lacked seriously. We had no idea of how to allocate time periods to different parts of the project. We just did things as they came to us, no specific order. This really hampered our performance. Students should prepare a time table and stick to it throughout their project. Work and time should be divided equally amongst all the group members and every member should complete his/her job in time. I learnt many things from this project even though we couldn’t complete it.

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