Ratnika Prasad (Cornell '14) recipient of the Ratan Tata Scholarship comments on her CommonApp activity short answer

Here's what she submitted:
"This summer I worked with the Mathematical Sciences Foundation, leading a group working on methods to renovate the Jantar Mantar - a dilapidated 17th century Indian astronomical observatory. 24 hours of wracking my brains for solutions to questions like "How do you find the latitude with a stick?", 8 hours of programming with Mathematica to build weirdly shaped models of ancient astronomical instruments and 16 hours in the scorching sun, taking readings and inspecting the aforementioned instruments which lie covered with graffiti made my 48 hours a week schedule.  From persuading tired teammates to work for just a little while longer to sitting up late to finish presentations, my internship sharpened a lot more than my Math concepts. It made me realize the power of diverse ideas and collaborative team work in solving seemingly intractable problems and taught me to be responsible for others beside me.  I left my internship a little wiser and considerably more sun burnt."

Ratnika comments on her activity short answer:

Why did you choose to write on this topic?

Among all my activities, the one I had been unable to talk about elsewhere was my love for Math and the  internship I did with the Math Science Foundation. This was the ideal way to talk about it.

Which other activities did you do while in High School that you could have written about?

Tennis, running, Youth Congress, hostel acitivites, working with the WWF, public speaking.

Which parts of the short answer do you like?

I like the way I have summed up the 48 hours a week I spent in this internship.

Looking back how would write this differently?

I was never quite happy with the way I sum up this short answer.

Which parts would you change?

I would change the ending.