This will showcase your attention to detail and the time and care you put into crafting your work. Make sure to also take the time to read your essay aloud. Certain phrases may sound fine in your head, but hearing them spoken can highlight awkward phrasing or unclear wording.
College admissions boards care about who you are outside of school as well as your academic history. That said, remember that your story exists to serve your prompt. Choose incidents that allowed you to learn and grow from them. Colleges know that students are humans and that failure is a natural part of life. Writers are supposed to show, not tell. Simply asserting that you have what the university is looking for is not convincing.
If you want to demonstrate your integrity, share a story that illustrates how you passed up an opportunity to exploit an advantage that was unfairly gained. Claiming that you have good study habits is another empty claim that you may be tempted to make. Opt out of just claiming good study habits and detail the exact study habits that have helped you succeed in school instead.
You can back up your claims with the GPA on your application, which carries much more weight. Although you need to be creative while writing your essay, you should resist the urge to get creative with the facts. After your initial draft is complete, put it away and let it sit for at least a day. After polishing it up, let it sit again and then clean it up some more before showing it to your proofreaders.
A short walk around your neighborhood can clear your mind and help you brainstorm new ideas. If you try to work through the stress, you may end up producing subpar work. Reading the essays written by other students who successfully got into the college of their choice is a good way to source inspiration for your own work. Look for common patterns in college admission essay samples, such as personal stories or a touch of humor.
You might also find some good ideas for structuring your essay to give it a breath of fresh air. Asking someone with a good grasp of writing or college admissions to read your essay is one of the best ways to get useful feedback.
Ask your proofreaders to specifically look for grammar and spelling errors or other obvious flaws. Ask for suggestions on the content, too, such as areas that need more detail or places where you could cut down or revise your wording.
Parents and teachers are good candidates for this task, but you can also make use of a college consultant with specialized knowledge of the admissions process. Your essay is a unique reflection of who you are as a person. Your own words are the best to convey who you are as a student and a person. In the sea of applicants, your college application essay gives you a chance to show why you deserve a coveted spot at your preferred college or university. Give yourself plenty of time, focus on the specific details of your life, and showcase your unique personality.
A strong essay can give you the best chance to get into the school of your dreams, and focusing on creating one that speaks to who you are is the key to getting it right. Do I Need College Consulting? How to Apply for College. Use articles and resources to uncover answers to common questions, get guidance on your goals, and learn about applying to schools. An online can be a desirable degree to pursue because of the earning potential and the wide range of employment opportunities it can open up for graduates.
There is a The reality is that the statistics for How formal should the tone of your college essay be? Taking your college essay to the next level. Sample essay 1 with admissions feedback. Sample essay 2 with admissions feedback. Student story: Admissions essay about a formative experience. Student story: Admissions essay about personal identity. Student story: Admissions essay about community impact. Student story: Admissions essay about a past mistake.
Student story: Admissions essay about a meaningful poem. Writing tips and techniques for your college essay.
As a high school student trying to find a research opportunity, it was very difficult to find a place that was willing to take me in, but after many months of trying, I sought the help of my high school biology teacher, who used his resources to help me obtain a position in the program. Using equipment that a high school student could only dream of using, I was able to map apoptosis programmed cell death versus necrosis cell death due to damage in HeLa cells, a cervical cancer line, after treating them with curcumin-bound nanoparticles.
Using flow cytometry to excite each individually suspended cell with a laser, the scattered light from the cells helped to determine which cells were living, had died from apoptosis or had died from necrosis. Later, I was able to image cells in 4D through con-focal microscopy.
From growing HeLa cells to trying to kill them with different compounds, I was able to gain the hands-on experience necessary for me to realize once again why I love science. Living on the Notre Dame campus with other REU students, UND athletes, and other summer school students was a whole other experience that prepared me for the world beyond high school.
For 9 weeks, I worked, played and bonded with the other students, and had the opportunity to live the life of an independent college student. Along with the individually tailored research projects and the housing opportunity, there were seminars on public speaking, trips to the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and one-on-one writing seminars for the end of the summer research papers we were each required to write. Through this summer experience, I realized my ambition to pursue a career in research.
I always knew that I would want to pursue a future in science, but the exciting world of research where the discoveries are limitless has captured my heart. This student was admitted to Harvard University. I believe that humans will always have the ability to rise above any situation, because life is what you make of it. By default, life is difficult because we must strive to earn happiness and success. Yet I've realized that life is fickler than I had imagined; it can disappear or change at any time.
Several of my family members left this world in one last beating symphony; heart attacks seem to be a trend in my family. They left like birds; laughing one minute and in a better place the next. Steve Jobs inspired me, when in his commencement address to Stanford University in , he said "Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.
Don't be trapped by dogma--which is living with the results of other people's thinking. I want to live my life daily. Every day I want to live. Every morning when I wake up, I want to be excited by the gift of a new day. I know I am being idealistic and young, and that my philosophy on life is comparable to a calculus limit; I will never reach it.
But I won't give up on it because, I can still get infinitely close and that is amazing. Every day is an apology to my humanity; because I am not perfect, I get to try again and again to "get it right. The hourglass of life incessantly trickles on and we are powerless to stop it. So, I will forgive and forget, love and inspire, experience and satire, laugh and cry, accomplish and fail, live and die.
This is how I want to live my life, with this optimistic attitude that every day is a second chance. All the time, we have the opportunity to renew our perspective on life, to correct our mistakes, and to simply move on. Like the phoenix I will continue to rise from the ashes, experienced and renewed. I will not waste time for my life is already in flux. In all its splendor The Phoenix rises In a burst of orange and yellow It soars in the baby blue sky Heading to that Great Light Baptized in the dance of time Fearless, eternal, beautiful It releases a breathtaking aurora And I gasp at the enormity.
Thank you! Your guide is on its way. In the meantime, please let us know how we can help you crack the the college admissions code. You can also learn more about our 1-on-1 college admissions support here. This is a college essay that worked for Duke University.
Note: Learn about how to get into Duke. As soon as the patient room door opened, the worst stench I have ever encountered hit me square in the face. Though I had never smelled it before, I knew instinctively what it was: rotting flesh. A small, elderly woman sat in a wheelchair, dressed in a hospital gown and draped in blankets from the neck down with only her gauze-wrapped right leg peering out from under the green material.
Q began unwrapping the leg, and there was no way to be prepared for what I saw next: gangrene-rotted tissue and blackened, dead toes. Never before had I seen anything this gruesome—as even open surgery paled in comparison. Doctors in the operating room are calm, cool, and collected, making textbook incisions with machine-like, detached precision. It is a profession founded solely on skill and technique—or so I thought.
This grisly experience exposed an entirely different side of this profession I hope to pursue. Feeling the tug of nausea in my stomach, I forced my gaze from the terrifying wound onto the hopeful face of the ailing woman, seeking to objectively analyze the situation as Dr. Q was struggling to do himself. Slowly and with obvious difficulty, Dr. I marveled at the compassion in Dr. The patient wiped her watery eyes and smiled a long, sad smile. I trust you. Back in his office, Dr. Suddenly, everything fell into place for me.
This completely different perspective broadened my understanding of the surgical field and changed my initial perception of who and what a surgeon was. I not only want to help those who are ill and injured, but also to be entrusted with difficult decisions the occupation entails.
Discovering that surgery is also a moral vocation beyond the generic application of a trained skill set encouraged me. I now understand surgeons to be much more complex practitioners of medicine, and I am certain that this is the field for me. This student was admitted to Stanford University.
Note: Learn about how to get into Stanford undergrad. Note: This is a supplemental essay example. In most conventional classrooms, we are taught to memorize material. We study information to regurgitate it on a test and forget it the following day. I thought this was learning. But this past summer, I realized I was wrong. I lived on a college campus with students and studied a topic. I selected Physical Science. On the first day of class, our teacher set a box on the table and poured water into the top, and nothing came out.
Then, he poured more water in, and everything slowly came out. We were told to figure out what had happened with no phones or textbooks, just our brains. We worked together to discover in the box was a siphon, similar to what is used to pump gas.
We spent the next weeks building solar ovens, studying the dynamic of paper planes, diving into the content of the speed of light and space vacuums, among other things. We did this with no textbooks, flashcards, or information to memorize. During those five weeks, we were not taught impressive terminology or how to ace the AP Physics exam.
We were taught how to think. More importantly, we were taught how to think together. Learning is not memorization or a competition. Learning is working together to solve the problems around us and better our community. This is a college essay that worked for University of Pennsylvania UPenn. Note: Learn about how to get into UPenn. When I was thirteen and visiting Liberia, I contracted what turned out to be yellow fever.
Luckily, my family managed to drive me several hours away to an urban hospital, where I was treated. I decided to create the first high school branch of the organization; I liked its unique way of approaching health and social issues. As branch president, I organize events from small stands at public gatherings to person dinner fundraisers in order to raise both money and awareness. But overall, ADPP has taught me that small changes can have immense impacts.
The difference between ADPP and most other organizations is its emphasis on the basics and making changes that last. Working towards those changes to solve real life problems is what excites me. I found that the same idea of change through simple solutions also rang true during my recent summer internship at Dr. At the lab, I focused on parsing through medical databases and writing programs that analyze cancerous genomes to find relationships between certain cancers and drugs.
For the first time in my science career, my passion was going to have an immediate effect on other people, and to me, that was enthralling. Working with Project ADPP and participating in medical research have taught me to approach problems in a new way. Finding those steps and achieving them is what gets me excited and hungry to explore new solutions in the future.
This student was admitted to UC Berkeley. Note: Learn how to effectively answer UC personal insight questions. The phenomenon of interdependency, man depending on man for survival, has shaped centuries of human civilization. However, I feel, the youth of today are slowly disconnecting from their community.
For the past few years, human connection has intrigued me and witnessing the apathy of my peers has prompted me to engage in various leadership positions in order to motivate them to complete community service and become active members of society. Less than a year before ninth grade began, my cousin and close friend passed away from cancer, and in the hodge-podge of feelings, I did not emotionally deal with either death.
However, a simple tale helped me deal with these deaths and take action. I was never fully aware of how closely humans rely upon each other until I read The Fall of Freddy the Leaf by Leo Buscaglia in freshman year. The allegory is about a leaf that changes with the seasons, finally dying in the winter, realizing that his purpose was to help the tree thrive.
After reading it, I was enlightened on the cycle of life and realized the tremendous impact my actions had on others. I watched as each student created friendships with other students on our team and members of the Phoenix community. At first the group leader ship consisted of only my advisor in me; however, I gained the support of the administrators.
I spent well over an hour a day preparing for the event, and it was all worth it! The Sonora Eagles were students of different grade levels, ethnicities, socioeconomic backgrounds, and educational ability. We joked and played football while volunteering. Our whole team gathered around, and I asked people to share how they have been affected by cancer.
As I went through the crowd, their faces illuminated by candlelight, their cheeks were wet with cleansing tears, I realize the impact I had on them, the purpose I was fulfilling; but most importantly, I realized the impact they had had on me. The Sonora Eagles were my means for dealing with the death of my loved ones to cancer. The theme for relay for life is a hope for a cure. Through this experience as a leader, I have come to realize, as a community, we hope together, we dream together, we work together, and we succeed together.
This is the phenomenon of interdependency, the interconnectedness of life, the pivotal reason for human existence. I have continued this momentum by starting a Sonora High School chapter of American Cancer Society Youth, a club dedicated to youth involvement and several aspects of the American Cancer Society, including the recent Arizona Proposition Each one of us leaves find a legacy as we for fill our purpose in life.
I believe my purpose as a student is to encourage others to become active community members and motivate them to reach new heights. As a student of the University of California, I will contribute my understanding of the human condition and student motivation to help strengthen student relationships within the campus and throughout the community. This is a college essay that worked for Cornell University.
Note: Learn about how to get into Cornell undergrad. My fingers know instinctively, without a thought. They turn the dial, just as they have hundreds of times before, until a soft, metallic click echoes into my eardrum and triggers their unconscious stop. I exultantly thrust open my locker door, exposing its deepest bowels candidly to the wide halls of the high school.
The bright lights shine back, brashly revealing every crevice, nook, and cranny, gleaming across its scintillating, bare surfaces. On this first day of senior year, I set out upon my task. I procure an ordinary plastic grocery bag from my backpack. The contents inside collectively represent everything about me in high school — they tell a story, one all about me. I reach in and let my fingers trail around the surfaces of each object.
I select my first prey arbitrarily, and as I raise my hand up to eye level, I closely examine this chosen one. A miniature Flamenco dancer stares back at me from the confines of the 3-D rectangular magnet, half popping out as if willing herself to come to life.
Instantly, my mind transports me back a few summers before, when I tapped my own heels to traditional music in Spain. I am reminded of my thirst to travel, to explore new cultures utterly different from my familiar home in Modesto, California. As a result, I have developed a restlessness inside me, a need to move on from four years in the same high school, to take advantage of diverse opportunities whenever possible, and to meet interesting people.
I take out the next magnet from my plastic bag. This one shows a panoramic view of the city of Santa Barbara, California. So they use your essay, along with your letters of recommendation and extracurricular activities , to find out what sets you apart from the other talented candidates.
You have a unique background, interests and personality. This is your chance to tell your story or at least part of it. The best way to tell your story is to write a personal, thoughtful essay about something that has meaning for you. Be honest and genuine, and your unique qualities will shine through.
Admissions officers have to read an unbelievable number of college essays, most of which are forgettable. Many students try to sound smart rather than sounding like themselves. Others write about a subject that they don't care about, but that they think will impress admissions officers. You don't need to have started your own business or have spent the summer hiking the Appalachian Trail. Colleges are simply looking for thoughtful, motivated students who will add something to the first-year class.
It could be an experience, a person, a book—anything that has had an impact on your life. Anyone can write about how they won the big game or the summer they spent in Rome. When recalling these events, you need to give more than the play-by-play or itinerary. Describe what you learned from the experience and how it changed you.
A student who can make an admissions officer laugh never gets lost in the shuffle. But beware. What you think is funny and what an adult working in a college thinks is funny are probably different. We caution against one-liners, limericks and anything off—color. Set it aside for a few days and read it again. Put yourself in the shoes of an admissions officer: Is the essay interesting? Do the ideas flow logically?
Does it reveal something about the applicant? What you write in your application essay or personal statement should not contradict any other part of your application—nor should it repeat it. This isn't the place to list your awards or discuss your grades or test scores. A teacher or college counselor is your best resource.