Sidharth Gupta, USC, on his prospective majors

Sidharth used two extremely well-regarded leaders of the fields he wanted to apply to. Thus, he shows both his knowledge of the respective subjects as well as his deep interest in them.    

Sidharth Gupta, University of Southern California

Describe your academic interests and how you plan to pursue them at USC. Please feel free to address your first- and second-choice major selections.

My first love is music. And my second love is the use of words to create magic. I still remember the day I read 'The Fountainhead' by Ayn Rand. The protagonist, Howard Roark, was a man who never compromised on his ideals in architecture. Through her words, Rand portrayed her character's love for architecture in such a way that it made me fall in love with the buildings that I had only read about. I was fascinated by how simple words on a page invigorated my imagination and left me a changed person. I believe that words have the same effect as music; both can provide companionship and change one's state of mind or entire philosophy. Over time, I started writing about my favourite songs and what they meant to me. It was through music that I developed a fascination for the English language. In the mid-60s, a song-writer bridged the gap between literature and music. Bob Dylan did not sing, he told stories. His lyrics, or poems, as he would much rather call them, were thought provoking. Bob Dylan's words inspired me amongst millions. At times I would sit for hours on end contemplating the meaning of songs such as 'Blowing in the Wind' and 'The Times They Are A-Changing'. Bob Dylan once said, 'A person is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night and in between does what he wants to do'. Studying at USC would allow me to pursue my academic interests in an environment that strives on creative energy.  I would have the opportunity to explore the two aspects of my life that I am fascinated and obsessed by - creative writing and music.