Best Way To Start A College Essay

- I think my favorite essay that I've ever read came from a student in the midwest.And he wrote about working at a fast food restaurant.So for the purposes of the application, where we as admish officers are trying to get to know the applicant, that's a great essay.

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Luckily, you do get a modest chance to distinguish yourself.

Universities in the US and across the world are increasingly looking away from test scores and grade point averages and toward one particularly unique component of students’ applications: the essay.

- The essay is really neat in that it's one of the only places in the application where they have complete control.

Where they can write about the things that they've been involved in and things that they've done.

- First and foremost when looking at an essay, you're going to be looking things like, their ability to write well and their appropriation for college.

But we're also using that information to kind of see things like, their resilience and their love of learning and their intellectual curiosity.- I always tell a student, you know, if you had the chance to come meet with the admissions committee and present yourself in person, would you want to do it?And without fail students say, yeah I'd love to have that opportunity. They say because if they were able to get know the admissions committee, the admissions committee would want to admit because they would know them and they would get to know what their about and what makes them unique and special.- One piece of advice I would give to every student is to ask someone who know's them a little bit, to read their essay and to tell them what impressions they have of you after reading the essay.- I think the essays that work best are actually quite simple.Quartz science editor Elijah Wolfson wrote his essay about pizza joints in New York—but it was really a tale of moving across the country and coming to terms with loss.Yale’s dean of admissions Jeremiah Quinlan told Quartz last year that the university is explicitly “looking for passion” in the kids it admits; you can bet that the admissions offices at Stanford, MIT, and other top-tier schools are hunting around for the exact same.If done exceptionally well, it’s a catapult to an acceptance offer.So what exactly is the best way to sell oneself to Harvard in a thousand words or fewer?- I have seen some amazing essays about things like students walking their dog, or even their bus ride to school.- I think our hope is that if a student were to drop the essay on the floor of their high school and someone were to pick it up. That they'd say for sure, oh I know that is so and so's essay, because it speaks so much about your voice and your experiences and your perspective.

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