Many schools include their own school-specific essays, also known as supplemental essays. These are additional pieces of writing that give admissions officers the chance to get to know you better. Here are some tips for writing great college supplemental essays: Ascertain which of your college choices require supplements.
Owner, Don't Sweat the Essay Best and Worst College Application Essay Prompts, Supplements and Common App Questions As the college application essay writing season draws to a close, with only a short time left before most regular applications are due, I'm looking back on some of the most interesting -- and most annoying -- essays prompts I've seen this year.
I'm also taking a moment to marvel at how revealing the essay prompts are about what kind of students the colleges are looking for when they devise the questions that help them distinguish between tens of thousands of applicants.
Precisely because there are so many hugely accomplished, talented students, and because the Common Application has devoted itself to making it easy to apply and increasing its own coffers in the process, let's not forgetthe essays are one of the tools used by the schools to make distinctions.
And the essay questions, which vary enormously from institution to institution, tell us some of what each institution values in its applicants. The University of Chicago's famously demanding, quirky prompts are there to help them select the kind of students who would thrive in this highly cerebral atmosphere.
By the same token, the essay prompts are information for the applicants, too. If you're not comfortable writing an essay inspired by this prompt: Queen Elizabeth Cady Stanton.
Babe Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Mash up a historical figure with a new time period, environment, location or occupation, and tell us their story," it's a safe bet that this isn't the right university for you. I frequently have clients who are eager to apply there, until they read the prompts.
Cornell University's College of Arts and Sciences, by contrast, asks a straightforward question that is demanding in a very different way. It requires a lot of intellectual curiosity and deep study of Cornell's course catalog and curriculum, and it can be up to words long, not the or words that the usual Why This College question usually is.
The word count is a tip-off that Cornell wants a thorough answer: Why will Cornell's College of Arts and Sciences be the right environment in which to pursue your interests? Pomona's prompts are looking for precise evidence of critical thinking, while Barnard's are going in search of a candidate's fearlessness and interest in women of accomplishment.
It's hard to choose my favorite of the essay prompts I encountered this year, but easy to choose the one I thought the most off-putting. That prize goes to the University of Rochester: It sounds as though whoever came up with it -- a dean, a PR firm?
And who cooked up the hopelessly uncool expression "ever-cooler"? It's not in the Urban Dictionary. None of the students I worked with had ever heard it, and they all scratched their heads about how to answer. As with most of these questions, the universities want to know what makes you stand out, what you'll bring to the place that's unique, what might be your best qualities or your most passionate interests.
Let's just say that that's probably what they're getting at.
My suggestion was to answer by talking about a unique quality or interest you have -- never mind who thinks it's "cool" or "ever-cooler. They admissions people want to attempt to stand out by asking a slightly off-beat question. They want to see what kind of answer a student will give to a question that isn't straightforward.
Perhaps they even want to limit applications, by asking a question that might turn applicants off -- and thereby keep only the most serious students applying. It's hard to know. I'll be looking next summer to see if they keep this prompt. I like them because they're open-ended inquiries that students can make their own.
They can answer in ways that reveal who they are, whether they're highly academic, highly creative, science nerds, music lovers and anything in between. I also want to single out a few top colleges and universities that have figured out how to distinguish between students without using any supplementary essays at all: Middlebury, Wesleyan and Washington University.
Here are my favorites, in alphabetical order:I'm class of , and applying to Cornell this fall.
The last time I checked Common Apps a few days ago, Cornell's supplement topics were not available yet. Supplemental College Essay Example Four, Stanford University Virtually all of Stanford's undergraduates live on campus. Write a note to your future roommate that reveals something about you or that will help your roommate—and us—know you better.
April 9, Academics, Access Counselors, Admissions, Applicant, Prospective Student, Student Life, Top Ten, Uncategorized Barry talks about the NY Opportunity Program Barry Wu, Class of , School of Industrial and Labor Relations (New York, NY) and friends working on a service project My name is Barry Wu and I am the .
The supplemental Cornell University admission essays are out for the upcoming college admissions cycle.
And these admission essays seem very familiar! And these admission essays seem very familiar!
For Cornell, the College Interest Essay is specific to the college at Cornell you’re applying to. Chad’s essay is well-written, but it doesn’t mention Cornell until the end.
“This seems like it could have been written and used as a supplement for any school,” Michener said. Chad ends up .
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