The 2016-17 Byu admissions essay Application platform went live last week, and in the ensuing weeks you will undoubtedly read a lot about the Common App’s personal essay. You will read about essays that worked and didn’t work. I’ll say it again: The prompts don’t matter.
The admissions essay’s true purpose is to tell admissions officers something they don’t know about you and that isn’t represented anywhere else on the application. The essay should aim to reveal something about your true passions, interests, and goals while giving a taste of your personality. Reading your essay should give admissions officers insight into what it would be like to have a conversation with you. While an essay prompt can serve as an inspirational launch point for a brilliant topic or story idea, over the years I have found many students get too caught up in trying to decide which prompt to tackle before they even understand which of their stories and characteristics they want to put on display. Decide what meal you are going to serve admissions first. What, of the many things you have to offer, will be the most satisfying tidbit you can lay down in front of someone who wants to know you better?
Take a cursory look at the Common Application’s essay prompts to get generally acquainted with them. Okay, just for a while, but still: say goodbye. Collect your best stories and ruminate on your defining characteristics. What doesn’t admissions know about you that you want them to know?
What moments in your life have shaped you and made you the person you are today? Dig those prompts out of cold storage. Read each one with your essay topic in mind. Choose the prompt that most closely fits the tale you aim to tell. You are now telling a story that both serves you well and meets all of the Common App’s requirements.
Saint John’s University is a Catholic school for men that partners with a nearby women’s school, College of Saint Benedict, to share academic programs and campuses resources. The school boasts 34 Nobel laureates among alumni and faculty. Recent grads tend to get high-paying jobs. With 1,600 undergraduates, Pomona features close student-faculty relationships. Illinois’s flagship university is among the top 15 public schools on the National Science Foundation’s list of high research spenders, and its strongest programs include accounting, engineering, and physics. Students also have access to the country’s second largest university library system.
Clemson was founded as an agricultural college, and while agricultural science is still a specialty, more general programs such as business are more popular today. Most every one at this rural campus is united by an enormous amount of school pride, especially around the football team. UCLA produces a lot of stars: professors like Internet pioneer Leonard Kleinrock, grads in show business like Ben Stiller, and others in pro sports like Kareem Abdul Jabbar. The school also supports ordinary students as well, with more than one third from low-income families.
University of Maryland has some all-star professors. Like most large public schools, the University of Maryland has some all-star professors. The faculty roster boasts three Nobel laureates, two Pulitzer Prize winners and, thanks to the campus’s proximity to Washington, D. NASA and the National Institutes of Health. While Virginia Tech is known especially for engineering, its business, social sciences, and agriculture programs are also strong. The campus Math Emporium houses hundreds of computers programmed with lessons that have boosted students’ math prowess.