TOEFL Sample Essay - 8

'Success comes to people who work hard'. Write an essay based on this notion. In the essay you should discuss the exemplary life of a person who had humble beginnings, but worked very hard to achieve success.

Since childhood we have been told that in order to achieve success, we must strive hard. However, hard work should not be aimless. We must have clear understanding of the targets that we set for ourselves and then estimate whether or not they are achievable. In other words, we must be aware of our strengths and weaknesses and set the targets accordingly. After that, we must work hard to achieve those targets, because hard work is irreplaceable. It is important to remember that nothing is unachievable if we set our hearts on it.

If we look at the life of Thomas Alva Edison, we see a success story that had humble beginnings. Edison's parents were refugees who had immigrated to Milan. Edison was the youngest in the family and was born in abject poverty. He struggled throughout his life against a hearing impairment. However, all of these did not deter him from becoming one of the greatest scientists of our times. He was the man who said that, in order to achieve success we must keep on trying. When he failed, he would say that it was a stepping stone to success. Edison also said that there is no substitute for hard work. Thanks to the efforts made by this man, we can now take for granted a small, but absolutely the most essential part of our lives- the electric bulb.

History is full of such exemplary figures, who have said that success comes only to those who keep on trying and those who strive against all odds. It is easy to give up, but success comes only to those who work hard. One can gain inspiration from the story of Edison, who had the humblest of beginnings, but went on to become one of the greatest success stories in history.