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08 May , 2021
Are You Making These Mistakes in Your Essay?
Most typical mistakes in a college essay
Starting a new chapter of your life by entering college is always frustrating. Especially, when you almost physically feel the load of responsibility. To earn a place in a college of your dream you need to work hard - and make a good self-representation for an admission committee. How? By sending them a flawless college essay. This is one of the most essential part of the file.
Do you want to be sure your essay is unique and appealing? Check the most typical mistakes you might make in an essay!
Long writing. Of course, you want to highlight all the best qualities and part you have. But let's be honest, admission committee is usually flooded with the applications. They simply have no time for a long read!
Not using help. The thought "I write my essay myself" seems quite proud... And at the same time, it's a bit stupid. If you have not done it before or read a couple of examples on the Internet, that won't help you to reach the ideal result.
Not following the proper format. A professional essay writer can make the job done fast and easy, because he knows the template, follow the plan and had already made hundreds of unique and remarkable pieces or writing.
Mentioning wrong things. Essay is not a composition where you can express whatever you want. It requires time, ideas and an interesting story.
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14 College Essay Examples From Top-25 Universities (2022–2023)
College essay examples from students accepted to harvard, stanford, and other elite schools.
REVIEWING SUCCESSFUL COLLEGE ESSAY EXAMPLES CAN HELP YOU UNDERSTAND HOW TO MAXIMIZE YOUR ODDS OF ACCEPTANCE
Responding effectively to college essay prompts is quite different from other essay writing. The combined challenge of addressing a question in an interesting way while staying focused and making yourself stand out, all within a limited number of words, is something that students struggle with every year. With a wide variety of prompts used by each school, alongside the Common App essays , it can be overwhelming to write strong, memorable essays.
However, there are some standard practices that will help elevate your essay:
Directly address any questions the prompt asks. Many essay prompts will ask you to write about extracurricular experiences in your life or to list interests such as your favorite movies or music. Be sure to include the answer to any questions and don't get distracted while providing context or other extra information.
Use specific information. Make sure to mention the specific volunteer program you worked at or the name of your favorite instructor from your summer STEM camp. While it's important not to overburden your essay with small details, peppering in a few specifics will highlight what's important to you both academically and personally.
Create a narrative. Just like with any story or news article, you want to start your essays with a good hook. Setting the stage for your experiences, including anecdotes to drive home a point, or carrying a thematic element throughout your essay will help keep the reader interested and will show off your creativity.
Reuse material. There’s no reason to write completely new essays for every school you’re applying to. Many schools ask the same questions with slightly different wording, like the commonly used “diversity essay” which essentially asks how you contribute and benefit from diversity. With some editing, a single essay could answer multiple prompts — and cut down on your stress!
Here are some example essays from some of the thousands of students we've helped get accepted to their dream school.
Note: Some personally identifying details have been changed.
College essay example #1
This is a college essay that worked for Harvard University .
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into Harvard Undergrad )
This past summer, I had the privilege of participating in the University of Notre Dame’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program . Under the mentorship of Professor Wendy Bozeman and Professor Georgia Lebedev from the department of Biological Sciences, my goal this summer was to research the effects of cobalt iron oxide cored (CoFe2O3) titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles as a scaffold for drug delivery, specifically in the delivery of a compound known as curcumin, a flavonoid known for its anti-inflammatory effects. 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. Using this collected data, it was possible to determine if the curcumin and/or the nanoparticles had played any significant role on the cervical cancer cells. 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. By the end of the summer, I wasn’t ready to leave the research that I was doing. While my research didn’t yield definitive results for the effects of curcumin on cervical cancer cells, my research on curcumin-functionalized CoFe2O4/TiO2 core-shell nanoconjugates indicated that there were many unknown factors affecting the HeLa cells, and spurred the lab to expand their research into determining whether or not the timing of the drug delivery mattered and whether or not the position of the binding site of the drugs would alter the results. 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 school year, the REU program has offered me a year-long job, and despite my obligations as a high school senior preparing for college, I couldn’t give up this offer, and so during this school year, I will be able to further both my research and interest in nanotechnology.
College essay example #2
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. We don’t know what life is or why we are in this world; all we know, all we feel, is that we must protect it anyway we can. Buddha said it clearly: “Life is suffering.” Life is meant to be challenging, and really living requires consistent work and review. 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 2005, 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 make mistakes, because that is how I learn; I want to follow the beat of my own drum even if it is "out of tune." The important thing is to live without regrets, so when my heart ceases to beat, it will make one last happy note and move on.
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." I breathe the peace of eternity, knowing that this stage is temporary; real existence is continuous. 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
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College essay example #3
This is a college essay that worked for Duke University .
(Suggested reading: 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. Dr. 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. These past two years of shadowing doctors in the operating room have been important for me in solidifying my commitment to pursue medicine, but this situation proved that time in the operating room alone did not quite provide a complete, accurate perspective of a surgeon’s occupation. 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. Q explained that an infection this severe calls for an AKA: Above the Knee Amputation. In the slow, grave silence that ensued, I reflected on how this desperate patient’s very life rests in the hands of a man who has dedicated his entire life to making such difficult decisions as these. I marveled at the compassion in Dr. Q’s promise that this aggressive approach would save the woman’s life. The patient wiped her watery eyes and smiled a long, sad smile. “I trust you, Doc. I trust you.” She shook Dr. Q’s hand, and the doctor and I left the room.
Back in his office, Dr. Q addressed my obvious state of contemplation: “This is the hardest part about what we do as surgeons,” he said, sincerely. “We hurt to heal, and often times people cannot understand that. However, knowing that I’m saving lives every time I operate makes the stress completely worth it.”
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.
College essay example #4
This is a supplemental essay that worked for Stanford University .
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into Stanford Undergrad and How to Ace the Stanford Roommate Essay )
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 attended the SPK Program, a five-week enrichment program with New Jersey’s best and brightest students. I lived on a college campus with 200 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. To me, learning is the means to a better future, and that’s exciting.
College essay example #5
This is a college essay that worked for University of Pennsylvania (UPenn).
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into UPenn )
When I was thirteen and visiting Liberia, I contracted what turned out to be yellow fever. I met with the local doctor, but he couldn’t make a diagnosis simply because he didn't have access to blood tests and because symptoms such as “My skin feels like it’s on fire” matched many tropical diseases. Luckily, my family managed to drive me several hours away to an urban hospital, where I was treated. Yellow fever shouldn’t be fatal, but in Africa it often is. I couldn’t believe that such a solvable issue could be so severe at the time—so I began to explore.
The exploration led me to the African Disease Prevention Project (ADPP), a non-profit organization associated with several universities. I decided to create the first high school branch of the organization; I liked its unique way of approaching health and social issues. Rather than just raising money and channeling it through third parties, each branch “adopts” one village and travels there to provide for its basic needs. As branch president, I organize events from small stands at public gatherings to 60-person dinner fundraisers in order to raise both money and awareness. I’ve learned how to encourage my peers to meet deadlines, to work around 30 different schedules at once, and to give presentations convincing people why my organization is worth their donation. But overall, ADPP has taught me that small changes can have immense impacts. My branch has helped raise almost $3,000 to build water sanitation plants, construct medical clinics, and develop health education programs in the small village of Zwedru. And the effect doesn’t stop there—by improving one area, our efforts permeate into neighboring villages as they mimic the lifestyle changes that they observe nearby—simple things, like making soap available—can have a big effect. 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. Martin Warner’s lab at UCLA. Dr. Martin’s vision involves using already available digital technologies to improve the individualization of healthcare. By using a person’s genome to tailor a treatment for them or using someone’s personal smartphone as a mobile-monitor to remotely diagnose symptoms, everyday technology is harnessed to make significant strides forward. 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. My analysis resulted in a database of information that physicians can use to prescribe treatments for their patients’ unique cancerous mutations. Now, a pancreatic cancer patient does not need to be the “guinea-pig” for a prototype drug to have a shot at survival: a doctor can choose the best treatment by examining the patient individually instead of relying on population-wide trends. 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. Dr. Martin’s lab and his book, Digital Healthcare: A New Age of Medicine, have shown me that changing something as simple as how we treat a disease can have a huge impact. I have found that the search for the holy grail of a “cure for cancer” is problematic as nobody knows exactly what it is or where to look—but we can still move forward without it.
Working with Project ADPP and participating in medical research have taught me to approach problems in a new way. Whether it’s a complex genetic disease or a tropical fever, I’ve found that taking small steps often is the best approach. Finding those steps and achieving them is what gets me excited and hungry to explore new solutions in the future.
College essay example #6
This student was admitted to UC Berkeley .
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into UC Berkeley and How to Write Great UC Essays )
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.
Last year, I joined the American Cancer Society‘s Relay for Life, a twenty-four-hour relay walk-a-thon designed to raise funds for cancer research and create awareness about its early detection. I started a team at school, gathered thirty students and chaperones, and raised $800 for the cause. I watched as each student created friendships with other students on our team and members of the Phoenix community. This year, I let a team in the relay for life again with the schoolwide team of 95 members, and we raised $2,900 for the cure for cancer. 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. The most important moment occurred during the night’s luminaria ceremony, during which cancer patients of the past and present were commemorated. 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 45.
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.
College essay example #7
This is a college essay that worked for Cornell University .
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into Cornell )
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. I have experienced study abroad in Spain, visited my father’s hometown in China five times, and traveled to many other places such as Paris. 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. Here, I recall spending six weeks in my glory, not only studying and learning, but actually pursuing new knowledge to add to the repertoire of mankind. I could have easily chosen to spend my summer lazing about; in fact, my parents tried to persuade me into taking a break. Instead, I chose to do advanced molecular biology research at Stanford University. I wanted to immerse myself in my passion for biology and dip into the infinitely rich possibilities of my mind. This challenge was so rewarding to me, while at the same time I had the most fun of my life, because I was able to live with people who shared the same kind of drive and passion as I did.
After sticking up my magnets on the locker door, I ran my fingers across the bottom of the bag, and I realized that one remained. It was a bold, black square, with white block letters proclaiming my motto, “Live the Life You Imagine.” In my four years at Cornell University, I will certainly continue to live life as I imagine, adding my own flavor to the Cornell community, while taking away invaluable experiences of my own.
College essay example #8
This student was admitted to Northwestern University .
As I sip a mug of hot chocolate on a dreary winter’s day, I am already planning in my mind what I will do the next summer. I briefly ponder the traditional routes, such as taking a job or spending most of the summer at the beach. However, I know that I want to do something unique. I am determined to even surpass my last summer, in which I spent one month with a host family in Egypt and twelve days at a leadership conference in New York City The college courses I have taken at Oregon State University since the summer after 7th grade will no longer provide the kind of challenge I seek.
Six months later, I step off the airplane to find myself surrounded by palm trees, with a view of the open-air airport. I chuckle to myself about the added bonus of good weather, but I know I have come to Palo Alto, California, with a much higher purpose in mind. I will spend six weeks here in my glory, not only studying and learning, but actually pursuing new knowledge to add to the repertoire of mankind. Through the Stanford Institutes of Medicine Summer Research Program, I will earn college credit by conducting original molecular biology research, writing my own research paper, and presenting my findings in a research symposium.
I decided to spend my summer doing research because I knew that I liked scientific thought, and that I would passionately throw myself into any new challenge. I always want to know more – to probe deeper into the laws of the universe, to explore the power and beauty of nature, to solve the most complicated problems. I have an insatiable curiosity and a desire to delve deeper down in the recesses of my intellect. At the Summer Research Program, I found out how much I enjoy thinking critically, solving problems, and applying my knowledge to the real world.
While pursuing research in California, I was also able to meet many similarly motivated, interesting people from across the United States and abroad. As I learned about their unique lifestyles, I also shared with them the diverse perspectives I have gained from my travel abroad and my Chinese cultural heritage. I will never forget the invaluable opportunity I had to explore California along with these bright people.
I could have easily chosen to spend that summer the traditional way; in fact, my parents even tried to persuade me into taking a break. Instead, I chose to do molecular biology research at Stanford University. I wanted to immerse myself in my passion for biology and dip into the infinitely rich possibilities of my mind. This challenge was so rewarding to me, while at the same time I had the most fun of my life, because I was able to live with people who share the same kind of drive and passion as I do.
College essay example #9
When I turned twelve, my stepdad turned violent. He became a different person overnight, frequently getting into fights with my mom. I didn’t deal with it well, often crying to my mom’s disappointment, afraid that my life would undo itself in a matter of seconds. You might say that my upbringing was characterized by my parents morphing everyday objects into weapons and me trying to morph into the perfect white walls that stood unmoving while my family fell apart.
This period in my life is not a sob story, but rather, the origin story of my love of writing. During a fight once, my stepdad left the house to retrieve a baseball bat from his truck. He didn’t use it, but I’ll never forget the fear that he would, how close he’d gotten. And in that moment, I did not cry as I was prone to do, but I pulled out a book, and experienced a profound disappearance, one that would always make me associate reading with escapism and healing.
Soon I came to write, filling up loose ruled paper with words, writing in the dark when we didn’t have money to pay for electricity. And as I got older, I began to think that there must be others who were going through this, too. I tried to find them. I created an anonymous blog that centered what it meant for a teenager to find joy even as her life was in shambles. In this blog I kept readers updated with what I was learning, nightly yoga to release tension from the day and affirmations in the morning to counter the shame that was mounting as a result of witnessing weekly my inability to make things better at home.
At that time, I felt uncertain about who I was because I was different online than I was at home or even at school where I was editor of my high school literary journal. It took me a while to understand that I was not the girl who hid in the corner making herself small; I was the one who sought to connect with others who were dealing with the same challenges at home, thinking that maybe in our isolation we could come together. I was able to make enough from my blog to pay some bills in the house and give my mom the courage to kick my stepfather out. When he exited our home, I felt a wind go through it, the house exhaling a giant sigh of relief.
I know this is not the typical background of most students. Sharing my story with like-minded teens helped me understand what I have to offer: my perspective, my unrelenting optimism. Because even as I’ve seen the dark side of what people are capable of, I have also been a star witness to joy and love. I do not experience despair for long because I know that this is just one chapter in a long novel, one that will change the hearts of those who come across it. And I can’t wait to see how it will end.
College essay example #10
This student was accepted at Yale University .
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into Yale )
I was a straight A student until I got to high school, where my calm evenings cooking dinner for my siblings turned into hours watching videos, followed by the frantic attempt to finish homework around 4 am. When I got an F on a chemistry pop quiz my mom sat me down to ask me what was happening. I told her I couldn’t focus or keep track of all my materials for classes. I thought she would call me lazy, accuse me of wasting the gift of being an American that she and my father gave me. Instead, she looked around at the walls covered in sticky notes, the index cards scattered on the computer desk, the couch, the table, and she said, “How are your friends managing it?”
It turned out while my peers were struggling to juggle the demands of high school it didn’t seem like they were working as hard to complete simple tasks. They only had to put things in a planner, not make sure the deadlines were placed in multiple locations, physical and digital. At my next doctor’s appointment my mom mentioned that I had a learning problem, but the doctor shook his head and said that I didn’t seem to have ADHD. I was just procrastinating, it’s natural.
My mom took off from her grocery store job to take me to two more appointments to ask about ADHD, the term the doctor had used, but other doctors were not willing to listen. I had As in every class except for World Literature. But I knew something was wrong. After our third doctor visit, I worked with the librarian after school to sift through research on ADHD and other learning disabilities until we came across the term executive functioning. Armed with knowledge, we went to a new doctor, and before my mom could insist that we get testing or get referred to a specialist, the doctor handed us a signed referral. She asked me about the folder in my hand. I told her it was full of my research. My mom mentioned that some doctors had refused to refer us to a specialist because my grades were too high. “It’s because we’re Asian,” she added.
I was shocked at this revelation. The last three doctors had mumbled something about grades but had never said a thing about race. Before I could deny it fervently, the doctor, who was from Taiwan, nodded sympathetically. She said it’s common to miss learning disabilities among different races due to biases. And some adolescents learn to mask symptoms by building systems. “You don’t have to prove anything to me. I believe you should get tested.” My mom thanked her fervently and the doctor said to her, “She’s going to be a great lawyer.”
The semester following the confirmation of my learning disability diagnosis was challenging to say the least. My school switched me out of all of my IB courses to “accommodate my special needs,” and I went back to the library, working with the librarian with numerous index cards and stacks of books to make a case for discrimination. The librarian, who had become my close confidante, introduced me to an academic tutor who specialized in learning disabilities and taught me skills like using redundancy and time management to make it easier for me to grapple with moving parts. He noted that with ADHD, the problem wasn’t always the inability to focus but rather the difficulty focusing without adequate perceived reward. It wasn’t that I was not capable but that I had to make myself sufficiently interested or reiterate why something mattered. This reframe changed my life, and when I came back to the library with my new schedule in hand, the most advanced courses my school had to offer, the librarian said, “You’re going to make a great lawyer.”
I smiled and said, “I’ve heard that before.”
College essay example #11
This student was accepted at the University of Pennsylvania.
My brother and I are exactly one year and one day apart. We look like twins — people confuse us — but we couldn’t be any more different. As children we wore the same clothes, received the same haircut. By the time we got to middle school it was clear that my older brother preferred quiet, indoor activities, while I was a born performer who preferred the theatrical, even when off stage. I took his relative silence to be disinterest and found it offensive. To the chagrin of my parents, we simply didn’t get along.
I didn’t mind having a tense relationship with my brother because I was involved at school. In particular I delved into the world of musical theater in addition to regularly singing solos at our high school choir concerts. I spent hours after school preparing for shows. And when I came home, I practiced as well, falling into a rigorous routine I thought I needed to remain at my best and be competitive for parts.
My bedroom was far enough from my parents so as not to disturb them, but space to practice became an issue with my brother because, well, we shared a room. Imagine him meditating on a window seat while I am belting, trying to sustain a high note. Needless to say, this created tension between us. From my point of view he could have meditated in the living room or while I was at practice, but he wasn’t willing to budge. From his point of view, high school was hard enough without the constant sound of Glee arrangements.
At the start of the semester, I practiced “Circle of Life” for a concert audition. While I could sing it fine in its original key, I had a hard time singing it along with the music because the arrangement of the song we were working on had a key change that was out of my range. I couldn’t change key without my voice cracking as I switched to a head voice. This was the first time I struggled to learn a song, and I was a week from the audition. I was irritable in that period and stopped practicing, declaring I had reached the height of my singing career. My brother experiencing quiet when I got home for the first time in years.
After a couple days of this, when I got home, he asked me to join him in meditation. And feeling my anger at my inability to navigate this song gracefully, I did. It was difficult at first. I was trying to clear my head. Later my brother told me that wasn’t the point. When your mind drifts away, you simply come back, no judgment. I liked the sound of that, and it became my new philosophy. I kept trying at the song, no longer getting angry at myself, and just in time for the audition I was able to maintain power in my voice despite the key change. It was important for me to learn you don’t have to always get everything right the first time and that good things come with continual effort. As for my brother, we no longer argue. I now understand why he prefers the quiet.
College essay example #12
This student was admitted to Brown University .
(Suggested reading: How to Get Into Brown )
My parents are aerospace engineers, humble even as their work helps our society explore new frontiers. They believe that you make a stand through the work that you do, not what you say. This is what they taught me. This is what I believed until my sophomore year when I was confronted with a moment where I could not stay quiet.
I live outside of a major city in a small, rural town that’s majority white but for a small South Asian population. My high school wasn’t diverse by any standards. Some students were openly the children of skinheads. After a racist exchange with a student who insulted her and refused to sit at the same lunch table, my best friend, who was Muslim, did not stand for the pledge of allegiance in homeroom the next day.
I hadn’t heard about the encounter that sparked this move on her part and was surprised when she didn’t stand up beside me, hand against her heart, mouth chanting an oath. She hadn’t mentioned any mounting discomfort to me, nor had I noticed anything. Unlike my “patriotic” peers, I was less upset by her refusal to stand up for the pledge of allegiance and more upset that she didn’t share with me that she was hurting and what she was going to do to protest how she was treated because of her beliefs and the color of her skin.
She was suspended for insubordination and when I called her, she said that surely in this situation I might find a way to think of more than my own feelings. I felt ashamed. It didn’t even occur to me to seek to understand what was behind her decision in the first place. I apologized, asking how to best support her. She said it was just important that I listen and understand that she could not thrive in an environment that promoted sameness. She spoke to me with a vulnerability I had never heard before. At the end of our conversation, I apologized profusely. She said she did not need my words and what she needed from me was to take a stand.
This was the opposite of the belief my parents drilled in me. I felt conflicted at first, as if by speaking about the situation I was doing something wrong. However, my friend had to deal with a reality that I did not. And perhaps taking a stand would allow my institution and everyone in it to learn to be a more inclusive space for everyone. Maybe there was a way to take a stand and to do the necessary work to change things.
I started a petition with my friend’s permission to end her suspension and to take disciplinary action instead on the student who had taken racist actions in the first place. Of the 1000 students at my high school, over 200 signed, a number that far exceeded my expectation. When I shared the results with my friend, she said to me, “Because of who you are, you will always have supporters. Use your power to do good.”
Since then, I have tried to be more aware that not everyone experiences comfort in the same environments that I do. Rather than assume everyone feels safe and supported, it’s best to create space to listen and to ask how you can be supportive. My friend and I created a club to foster cross-cultural dialogue. In the past year two other clubs of its kind began at other local schools. More than anything I am proud that I have learned to be a better friend and a more thoughtful community member in a way that honors who I am and what I value.
College essay example #13
This is a college essay that worked for Washington University in St. Louis (WashU).
I held my breath as my steady hands gently nestled the crumbly roots of the lettuce plant into the soil trench that I shoveled moments before. Rainwater and sweat dripped from my brow as I meticulously patted and pressed the surrounding earth, stamping the leafy green creature into its new home. After rubbing the gritty soil off of my hands, I looked at Brian, a co-volunteer and nonverbal 20-year-old with autism, who extended his arm for a high-five. In the year that I’ve been working with him, I’ve watched him revel in planting, nurturing, and eventually harvesting his veggies, especially the grape tomatoes, which we enjoy eating fresh off the vine! Upon walking to the next row of hollowed cavities, we were not contemplating the lengthy work that lay ahead, but rather, we sought to liberate the helpless lettuces, imprisoned in produce cartons that were too small for them to grow in. Finally, after taking a step back to admire the day’s last plant, my chest swelled as a wave of contentment flushed through my body.
My love for gardening began when I moved to Georgia during my sophomore year. In the time I’ve spent learning how to garden, I’ve developed an affinity for watching my vegetables grow to maturity, eager to be harvested and sold at the Saturday market. Though many see gardening as tedious busywork, I find it meditative, as I lose track of time while combining peat moss and soil in the garden’s compost mixer. Saturday morning garden work has become a weekend ritual, ridding me of all extraneous responsibilities. My body goes into autopilot as I let my mind wander. I don’t actively focus on focusing, but rather I observe myself internally digest the week’s events. I’m a bystander to fireworks of thought that explode in my mind as my perception of important matters becomes trivial. Sometimes, it’s the physics midterm that suddenly seems less daunting or the deadlines I need to meet for my Spanish project that push back farther. Other times, I contemplate alternative endings to conversations or make perfect sense of the calculus answer that was at the tip of my tongue in class.
I met Brian, a close friend of mine who also basks in the tranquility of nature, through my gardening endeavors. While we aren’t able to communicate verbally, we speak the language of earth, water, peat, and seedlings. He doesn’t speak with words, but his face tells stories of newly found purpose and acceptance, a pleasant contrast to the typical condescension and babying he feels by those who don’t think he’s capable of independent thought.
Throughout my time in the garden with Brian, I began to understand that he, like everyone, has a particular method of communicating. There are the obvious spoken languages, body languages, facial expressions, and interactions we share on a day-to-day basis that reflect who we are and communicate what we represent. Brian expresses himself through various manifestations of unspoken language that he uses to signal how he feels or what he wants. But the nuanced combinations of different methods of communicating are oftentimes overlooked, raising a barrier to mutual understanding that prevents one from being capable of truly connecting with others. I began to understand that in order to reach people, I have to speak in their language, be it verbally or otherwise. Working with Brian over the past year has made me more aware that people can have difficulty expressing themselves. I found that I can positively lead people if I can communicate with them, whether on the track or in my Jewish youth group discussions. As I move into the next phases of my life, I hope to bring these skills with me because, in order to effectuate positive change in my community, I learned that I must speak in the language of those around me. Those are the words Brian taught me.
College essay example #14
This student was accepted at Brown University.
It felt like I threw myself out of a plane without a parachute. My eyes firmly shut, I feared for my life as I plummeted towards the ground. In hindsight, perhaps half coming out at a public restaurant wasn’t the brightest idea. Then again, living as the half-closeted queer kid meant that I was all too familiar with intimidating situations.
I asked my mom: “What would you do if I had a girlfriend?” She instantly replied that she couldn’t understand. Immediately, my heart dropped and the emotional free fall began. She explained that Americans choose to be gay for personal enjoyment, which in my Korean culture is an attitude that is severely frowned upon. I sat there like a statue, motionless and afraid to speak, blindly hurtling towards a hard reality I hadn’t expected. Rejection cut me deeply and I started to feel the itch of tears welling in my eyes, yet I had to contain myself. I couldn’t let the pain seep through my facade or else she would question why I cared. All I could do was keep looking down and shoveling food into my mouth, silently wishing I could just disappear. That night, I realized it would be a long time before I could fully come out to my mom. My eyes tightened as I continued to fall.
In the following weeks, I started noticing how discomfort played a natural part in my life. I recognized the anxious reactions of my classmates as I argued with my Christian friends when they said my queerness is a sin. I observed the judgmental glances my mentors gave me as I passionately disagreed with my conservative lab mates over my sister’s abortion. Eventually, my friends decided to censor certain topics of discussion, trying to avoid these situations altogether. I felt like vulnerability was the new taboo. People’s expressions and actions seemed to confine me, telling me to stop caring so much, to keep my eyes closed as I fall, so they didn’t have to watch.
Had others felt uncomfortable with me in the same way I had felt uncomfortable with my mom? Do they feel that our passions might uncover a chasm into which we all fall, unsure of the outcome?
Perhaps it was too raw , too emotional .
There was something about pure, uncensored passion during conflict that became too real. It made me, and the people around me, vulnerable, which was frightening. It made us think about things we didn’t want to consider, things branded too political, too dangerous. Shielding ourselves in discomfort was simply an easier way of living.
However, I’ve come to realize that it wasn’t my comfort, but rather, my discomfort that defined my life. My memories aren’t filled with times where life was simple, but moments where I was conflicted. It is filled with unexpected dinners and unusual conversations where I was uncertain. It is filled with the uncensored versions of my beliefs and the beliefs of others. It is filled with a purity that I shouldn’t have detained.
Now, I look forward to tough conversations with a newfound willingness to learn and listen, with an appreciation for uncertainty. I urge others to explore our discomfort together and embrace the messy emotions that accompany it. I try to make our collective discomfort more navigable. Since that dinner, my relationship with my mother is still in free fall. It’s dangerous and frightening. Thankfully, the potentially perilous conversations I’ve had with my friends has given me a newfound appreciation for my own fear. I’ll admit, part of me still seeks to close my eyes, to hide in the safety I’ll find in silence. Yet, a larger part of me yearns to embrace the dangers around me as I fall through the sky. I may still be falling, but this time, I will open my eyes, and hopefully steer towards a better landing for both my mom and me.
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How to Write the Carnegie Mellon University Essays 2022-2023
Tucked away in Steelers country, otherwise known as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, lies the 153 acre campus of Carnegie Mellon University. CMU is home to just under 7,000 undergraduate students enrolled across its seven schools and colleges.
Priding itself on copious opportunities as a research university, as well as the achievements of its student body and alumni, Carnegie Mellon offers students the opportunity to pursue real-world solutions alongside award-winning faculty across all disciplines. In fact, CMU is consistently ranked in the top 30 universities and is considered one of the very best for computer science.
As part of the application process, prospective students are required to respond to three 300-word prompts, and one optional 150-word prompt. However, students shouldn’t look at the supplements as a chore. As the admission process for CMU becomes more selective, its supplemental essays provide an increasingly vital opportunity for you to differentiate yourself from the pack. Keep reading for our suggestions on how to tackle this year’s supplemental responses.
Read this Carnegie Mellon essay example to inspire your own writing.
Carnegie Mellon University Supplemental Essay Prompts
Prompt 1 (required): Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that’s developed over time – what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study? (300 words)
Prompt 2 (required): Many students pursue college for a specific degree, career opportunity or personal goal. Whichever it may be, learning will be critical to achieve your ultimate goal. As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience? (300 words)
Prompt 3 (required): Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration? Highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. Tell us, don’t show us (no websites please). (300 words)
Prompt 4 (optional): When it comes to deciding whether to submit standardized test scores, occasionally applicants want us to better understand the individual context of their decision. If you’d like to take advantage of this opportunity, please share any information about your decision here. This is an optional question for those who may want to provide additional context for consideration. (150 words)
All Applicants, Prompt 1 (Required)
Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that’s developed over time – what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study (300 words).
Many schools require a “ Why This Major? ” prompt to assess your interest in your chosen area of study. This prompt asks this standard question, but with a particular emphasis on how past experiences have influenced your desire to study your prospective major, rather than what you hope to achieve by studying it.
A successful execution of this prompt will:
- Elaborate on the path that led you to choose your major
- Show the admissions committee why you deserve to pursue this major at their school.
The latter doesn’t necessarily need to be explicit. Instead, reflect on your path in a way that demonstrates intellectual curiosity, creativity, and passion for what it is you hope to pursue at the college level.
You can take a few different approaches when answering this prompt. The first is a narrative arc or anecdote. Think back to a salient moment in which you realized the importance of your prospective major to you. Perhaps you were in a robotics competition and after weeks of laboring, your robot finally moved. Maybe that was the moment when you knew for sure that this was the path you needed to pursue. This response could start something like this:
“I couldn’t believe my ears the first time Sparky whirred to life. After weeks of toiling, I watched him wheel across the classroom floor, rhythmically belting out the tell-tale beeps I had coded him to make with each turn.”
Here’s what telling that story does. First, it shows tenacity—even after weeks of failure, you didn’t give up. Second, it shows innovation. And third, CMU just happens to be known for offering a robotics major, so even without being explicit, you just told the admissions committee exactly why you belong at CMU!
Stories are a great method for drawing in your reader and creating pathos. The trick, however, is to not get so caught up in the narration that you fill your 300 words without actually saying anything. If you’re going the anecdote route, ask yourself the following questions:
- Did I answer the prompt?
- Does the story I just told show why I’m passionate about the major I’ve chosen?
- Have I demonstrated that CMU is the right place for me?
Don’t say you want to pursue a major in underwater basket-weaving if CMU doesn’t offer that (just an example, but you get the idea).
Do mention, either briefly or implicitly, how CMU would allow you to continue pursuing and developing your passion.
Let’s move on to the second method of answering this prompt, we’ll refer to it as the chronological method.
You may not be able to fully answer the prompt with just one moment or story. That’s okay! An alternative is to briefly list key moments, progressions, or accomplishments leading up to your decision. Here’s an example:
“From writing short stories as a seven year old to winning my first prose contest in high school, creative writing has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.”
Unlike the narrative arc method, this example is neither a story nor a specific event. Instead, it shows how creative writing has been pivotal to your life for years. Though arguably less compelling than a story, this method has the bonus of demonstrating growth, long-term commitment, and development. Being that CMU is one of the only universities to offer a BA in creative writing, it also shows why you’d be applying.
This same method will work if you choose to talk about who or what inspired you. However, this comes with a warning. If you choose to talk about a person or work that inspired you, ensure that you don’t only write about said person or work. If the admissions committee learns more about the Pulitzer prize winner whose work inspired you than they do about you and your work, reassess whether this is a beneficial inclusion.
All Applicants, Prompt 2 (Required)
Many students pursue college for a specific degree, career opportunity or personal goal. whichever it may be, learning will be critical to achieve your ultimate goal. as you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience (300 words).
This essay provides you with the perfect opportunity to demonstrate your passion for CMU and your understanding of its available opportunities. While the prompt doesn’t explicitly ask you “ Why This School? ,” it does asks you to discuss two things:
- The explicit question: what do you hope to accomplish in your undergraduate degree program?
- The implicit question: how is CMU uniquely equipped to help you realize those goals?
While the explicit question is definitely important to address, tackling the implicit question through the use of specific examples and thoughtful reflection will allow your essay to stand out among other applicants.
Think about your expectations for your college experience. Perhaps it’s really important to you to have substantive research experiences under your belt as an undergraduate student, since you want to pursue an MD-PhD.
What specific projects and topics might you be looking to pursue? How will studying at Carnegie Mellon enable you to pursue these projects and ideas? Briefly reflecting on Carnegie Mellon’s financial investment in undergraduate research as you answer this prompt, for example, can help demonstrate both your familiarity with the university and its resources as well as your alignment with its culture and values.
Perhaps you are hoping to apply your textbook knowledge within a broader context through community engagement. CMU empowers its students to tackle problems and issues that matter in hopes that its students will be leaders in improving the world around them. Consequently, discussing your interest in taking your learning outside of the classroom with the support of the Office of Student Leadership, Involvement, and Civic Engagement would not only speak to your metrics regarding a successful college experience, but also show how you might add to the CMU community as an undergraduate and beyond.
Whatever your goals may be, ensure that your essay has a clear “why.” Rather than simply stating that you want to join the college orchestra, explain that you want to do so because playing the cello in high school has allowed you to form meaningful relationships with other musicians and life mentors. Playing music has taught you the importance of teamwork and dedication, and you want to continue cultivating these relationships and skills in college.
The point here isn’t to draft a college bucket list, but instead to reflect on what elements of the college experience, outside of the day-to-day coursework, you’re looking forward to as a prospective student. Be true to yourself and your goals, and speak honestly about what it is you hope to accomplish as an undergraduate student at CMU.
All Applicants, Prompt 3 (Required)
Consider your application as a whole. what do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. tell us, don’t show us (no websites please). (300 words).
This is your chance to show the admissions committee exactly what makes you special. Within the confines of the word limit, the options are endless. But don’t get bogged down by the possibilities!
So, how do you know what’s worth writing about?
Is there something you mentioned on your Common App that you feel the need to elaborate? The topic of this essay should not be even remotely similar to the subject of your personal statement. Think of your essays as a portfolio; they should be complementary without being redundant. For example, if your passions are science and wildlife, and your personal statement is about wildlife, make this prompt about science.
Is there something you haven’t been able to mention anywhere else that you’re dying to talk about? Let your personality shine through. Whether your passion of choice is volunteering with animals, taking apart computers, or almost anything else, it can have a place in this prompt. However, it shouldn’t be so random that it doesn’t say anything about you as an applicant.
Here’s a good example: “I buy postcards but never send them. My collection is from all over the world, ranging from Tanzania to New Caledonia. Each postcard tied to a travel story. The postcard of the Dolomites? That’s where I went on a 3-day backpacking trip with my family. The postcard with a sketch of takoyaki? I bought it because I wanted to remember the delicious meals my Japanese host family made me.”
See how this paints a picture of a student eager to learn and expand their horizons?
Now here’s a bad example: “I like watching Netflix in my free time.”
Does that tell the admissions officers something that helps them envision a contributing member of the CMU community? Not particularly.
Basically, use this as an opportunity to show your personality and your passion. Narrow in on something pivotal to your identity, and make sure it still shows CMU why you’re a great fit. If you have a story, accomplishment, or passion that shows you possess drive, an entrepreneurial spirit, or a similar embodiment of the values of CMU, here’s the place to show it. However, if you’ve already said it in another CMU essay or in your personal statement, don’t say it again!
So, there you have it for the required prompts! At the end of the day, you want all three essays to answer the prompts in a way that screams ‘you.’ The more of your personality in the essays, the better. Whether you’re reflecting on how your first broken bone led you to pursue medicine or discussing how synchronized swimming deepened your capacity for empathy and collaboration, remember to always be open and honest as you tell your story.
All Applicants, Prompt 4 (optional)
When it comes to deciding whether to submit standardized test scores, occasionally applicants want us to better understand the individual context of their decision. if you’d like to take advantage of this opportunity, please share any information about your decision here. this is an optional question for those who may want to provide additional context for consideration. (150 words).
This prompt applies to those who have either opted out of taking standardized tests, have chosen not to submit their scores, or have other circumstances surrounding their scores. Here, Carnegie Mellon gives applicants a chance to explain the reasons behind these circumstances.
Standardized testing disadvantages many groups of people, especially low-income students. With the pandemic, it’s also likely that students won’t have had as many opportunities to take tests, if at all. Students may also have other extenuating life experiences or circumstances that affected their ability to take or do well on the test.
Whatever your circumstances, Carnegie Mellon gives you 150 words, so avoid including long anecdotes or excess background information. State your reason(s) clearly and concisely, in a matter-of-fact way. This section might be optional, but you should treat it with the same care as your answers to the other prompts. Your writing should carry the same level of poise as your other responses.
There are some cases, however, where you might choose to forego this prompt. If you chose not to submit a score because you underperformed, and there wasn’t necessarily an extenuating circumstance, then you could leave your response blank. If you performed poorly and didn’t submit your score because you were recovering from a concussion, then you might respond to this essay. Otherwise, telling the admissions office that you got a low score defeats the purpose of not submitting your score.
Where to Get Your Carnegie Mellon Essays Edited
Do you want feedback on your CMU essays? After rereading your essays countless times, it can be difficult to evaluate your writing objectively. That’s why we created our free Peer Essay Review tool , where you can get a free review of your essay from another student. You can also improve your own writing skills by reviewing other students’ essays.
If you want a college admissions expert to review your essay, advisors on CollegeVine have helped students refine their writing and submit successful applications to top schools. Find the right advisor for you to improve your chances of getting into your dream school!
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How to Be Successful in College: The Recipe for Future Students
By Ashley Brooks on 06/03/2019
You have an idea of what the perfect college student should be like: always early to class, the first to contribute to a discussion, able to write papers with ease and using color-coded notes to study for tests.
The mental image of this “perfect” college student might have you intimidated as you prepare to embark on your college journey. You’re worried you won’t be able to live up to those high expectations—what if it turns out you don’t have what it takes to be a successful college student?
Figuring out how to be successful in college doesn’t have to require a special skill set. You might be surprised to discover you already have many of the traits it takes to find student success in college! Calm your nerves by looking at our roundup of tips for how to be a successful student. You might already have everything you need to start your college career on the right foot.
What does it take to be successful in college?
There isn’t one “right” way to achieve success as a college student, but there are tried-and-true tips that can help you do your best and make the most of your time in school. We enlisted help from Jason Martinez, recent college graduate and marketing coordinator at Redefine Marketing Group . Use this advice to start your student journey with confidence!
1. Strong time-management skills
Having a solid time-management plan can help you stay on top of your workload without feeling overwhelmed. “Time management will grant you the ability to get as many assignments finished as possible with the least amount of stress,” Martinez says. Remember that study sessions don’t have to last all day (or night) to be effective!
“Use any little amount of free time you have to chip away at assignments, even if it’s only 20 minutes,” Martinez advises.
While you might not be able to write an entire paper in 30 minutes, you can take concrete steps that will make the longer study and writing sessions go smoother. Organize your thoughts, make an outline, review vocabulary terms—these little things add up.
2. Organization skills
Staying organized is another key ingredient to balancing your responsibilities and finding success as a college student. That doesn’t mean you have to have an immaculately color-coded organization system—taking some basic organizational steps can go a long way.
Keeping close tabs on due dates for homework can help you plan a schedule each week to make sure nothing falls through the cracks. Having a planner dedicated to schoolwork can also help you plan ahead so you have enough time to study for tests or complete larger projects.
3. The ability to work with others
Collaborating with classmates is an important part of college life, one that prepares you for the realities of the workplace. Martinez admits that working in groups isn’t always easy, but brushing up on your collaboration skills can make the process go more smoothly. “Figure out ways to effectively work against adversity and get the job done.”
4. Friends to support you
Making friends within your degree program means you’ll always have support and accountability, whether it’s studying for tests or swapping stories about the highs and lows of college life. “You’ll always have someone to rely on for help when needed, and it makes coursework more enjoyable when you have someone to relate to,” Martinez says. “Plus who knows? You might end up finding someone that’ll be a friend for life.”
5. Curiosity to learn more
Gaining new knowledge and skills is at the heart of your college experience. You’ll gain more from your time in school if you come with an open sense of curiosity and a desire to learn as much as possible. Try new things and ask questions whenever you can. “During your college experience, do as much as possible to learn and step outside of your comfort zone,” Martinez says.
6. A positive mindset
It’s natural to feel a bit nervous before starting school, but giving too much focus to those negative thoughts can actually prevent you from reaching your potential. Negative thought patterns have been linked to increased stress, as well as anxiety and other mental health problems. Reframing your worries and embracing a more positive mindset can increase your resilience and help you bring your best effort to your education.
7. Confidence in yourself
“Some advice I’d offer to new college students feeling nervous about their role is to simply believe in yourself,” Martinez says. You don’t have to be perfect to have a successful college experience. You can persevere with determination and the confidence that you have what it takes to earn your degree. “You deserve to be here, and you need to convince yourself of that,” Martinez says.
Are you ready to be a successful student?
Knowing how to be a successful student doesn’t have to be daunting. With these skills and character traits, you have everything you need to succeed as a college student.
Even with the right mindset, it always helps to have support along the way. Find out how you can get help with our article, “ 9 Surprising Student Resources You Didn’t Know Rasmussen University Offered .”
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was originally published in 2014. It has since been updated to include information relevant to 2019.
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About the author
Ashley is a freelance writer for Collegis education who writes student-focused articles on behalf of Rasmussen University. She believes in the power of words and knowledge and enjoys using both to encourage others on their learning journeys
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How to Write the Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Essays: Examples + Guide 2022/2023
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What are the carnegie mellon supplemental essay prompts.
- How to write each supplemental essay prompt for Carnegie Mellon
- Prompt #3: "Additional information" essay
If you combined a robber baron, a classic fruit, and an extra “L,” and somehow ended up with a top 25 university with an especially strong engineering program, you’d obviously name it Carnegie Mellon.
Carnegie Mellon’s supplemental essay prompts can feel more wide open than those for many other schools, stymying some students at first, but also offering an opportunity for students to differentiate themselves from other applicants.
The below guide will help you move past initial roadblocks.
If you want to get a clearer sense of what Carnegie Mellon is looking for, you can explore an extensive, by-the-numbers look at its offerings, from enrollment and tuition statistics to student life and financial aid information on its Common Data Set . And for insights into how the university envisions itself and its role, and how it wants to grow and evolve, read its strategic plan . Reading through this will give you a strong idea of what CMU values—and may offer nuggets you can sprinkle into your essay.
Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that’s developed over time – what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study? (300 words)
Many students pursue college for a specific degree, career opportunity or personal goal. Whichever it may be, learning will be critical to achieve your ultimate goal. As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience? (300 words)
Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration? Highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. Tell us, don’t show us (no websites please). (300 words)
How to Write Each Supplemental Essay Prompt for Carnegie Mellon University
How to write the carnegie mellon supplemental essay #1.
This is a standard “Why Major” prompt. For a larger guide to “Why Major” prompts, click here . Below is a condensed version.
One possible approach:
Think of this as a quick origin story.
Step #1: Imagine a mini-movie of the moments that led you to your interest and create a simple, bullet-point outline.
Step #2: Put your moments (aka the “scenes” of your mini-movie) in chronological order, as it’ll help you see how your interests developed. It also makes it easier to write transitions.
For CMU’s essay, try one scene per short paragraph.
Step #3: For CMU, you’ll likely want to include a specific thesis that explicitly states your central argument—in this case, what you want to study and why. This thesis can come at the beginning, middle, or end of your essay.
Once you have those pieces, you have a few structural options:
A. A hook that thematically sets up where you’ll take us, and ideally shows an aspect of your intellect/personality. (If you do this, it can be stylistically effective to bookend—to end the essay by linking back to what you opened with.)
B. An initial moment that sparked your interest.
C. Your thesis.
The moments of your mini-movie, illustrating both the development of your interest and some of your core values.
One option: Go narrower—perhaps link to specific aspects of CMU that will help you continue on your path toward a future goal.
Another option: Go wider—name the road you hope to follow ahead (for example, career path, organizations you’d like to work with, the greater value/implications of studying what you want to).
It’s important to note that, unlike at many schools, at CMU, it can be difficult to change majors (some departments don’t allow you to switch into their programs at all).
And last, a quick tip: Be sure this essay is consistent with your personal statement if you’ve mentioned aspects of your major/career there.
Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Essay Example #1
At heart, I’m both regulatory bureaucrat and capitalistic entrepreneur. Coming from a small business-owning family, I’ve grown up finding ways to one-up the competition, from boosting website search ranking with unconventional SEO to negotiating with book suppliers to cut costs. After all, our rent depends on our profits. However, I also hold enormous respect for regulation. I vividly remember seeing my second grade classmate Nelson sprawled on the asphalt in front of the Chinese school we attended, accidentally run over by his teacher. I later discovered that afterschool was unlicensed: no safety training, no inspections, nothing. Years later, when my mother opened her own afterschool business, I filed the licensing documents and installed government-mandated guardrails. Though burdensome, regulation is crucial. The afterschool industry taught me the inseparability of business and policy, but also sparked my curiosity concerning how political economics can leverage that relationship for maximal social benefit. In my Democratic Party internship, I examined how to incentivize below-market-rate housing construction without reducing overall supply. At FBLA Nationals, I delivered a presentation on management practices to reduce oil spills, increasing profits while meeting environmental standards. CMU strikes me as surprisingly similar to the afterschool industry: an environment where learning occurs through doing and where business and policy can be explored in tandem. I’m excited by the new Economics and Politics degree, which would allow me to take Tepper’s and Dietrich’s classes concurrently. I’d love to attend the Washington Semester Program, applying my education to policy at a greater scale than I am currently. And I’m intrigued by electives like Coffee and Capitalism, using my favorite drink as a microcosm of commerce and geopolitics. Whether I become a leader in the afterschool industry or an elected official regulating it, I know CMU will enable this Capitalist Bureaucrat to catalyze purposeful impact. — — —
Tips + Analysis:
Hook the reader. Notice how the first line performs a few functions here. First, it pulls us in and makes us curious what exactly they mean by this claim. Second, it shows some of the author’s personality, as there’s a slight wry humor to the juxtaposition (both in the self-effacing nature of referring to themselves as a bureaucrat, with its cultural connotations, and in the joining of two things that tend to be viewed as diametrically opposed). You’ll notice that the other example essays for this prompt hook us as well, giving us a quick sense of who the author is.
Show the development of your interest through moments that connect to core values. Each paragraph provides details that show both intellectual and emotional links to the student’s chosen field, and that link to their core values (community involvement, integrity, etc). And they do a nice job of increasing the degree of the student’s interest and involvement (e.g. internship, FBLA Nationals), illustrating their dedication. Bonus points here for raising the stakes by mentioning their family’s rent is in part dependent on their work.
A narrower ending—how CMU can help with the next steps. Above, the student has clearly thought about how CMU can help them on their path forward. (If you choose this option, be sure to avoid repetition with the next prompt.)
Below are three more sample essays.
How would our world change if we could print any image or text onto any surface with just a small portable printing device and a mobile app? Designing walls, tunnels, roads-- all these jobs would become effortless. To make my vision into reality, I created an Augmented Reality & Machine Learning app as well as a handheld printer prototype at Cornell's Computer Systems Lab last summer. My application harnesses the motion detection data and on-device deep neural networks to determine the surfaces surrounding the smartphone camera's view. Afterwards, the user can tap and drag an image on the camera screen of the smartphone to "prop up" an image onto any detected surface. Using the handheld printer, the user can print the virtually propped image onto the actual wall. I’ve grown more enthusiastic in my work every day because I’ve seen how innovative mobile apps can magically merge virtual objects into the real world for billions of smartphone users. The combination of data collection, analysis, and implementation of computer graphics and machine learning in my project has intensified my interest in Data Science. From analyzing the refugee crisis in the Middle East to detecting tumors at an early stage, the benefits that three quintillion bytes of data every day can provide are endless. As a Statistics and Machine Learning student at CMU, I look forward to continuing my project with deep neural networks and mixed reality, as well as discovering other interdisciplinary applications. Courses such as Modern Regression and Statistical Computing will help me use scientific methods to draw meaningful insights from data. As the unprecedented increase in scale and importance of data revolutionizes a multitude of industries, Carnegie Mellon’s groundbreaking Statistics & Machine Learning curriculum and research opportunities will support my ambition for making a genuine impact in the world. — — —
When I was young, I drew planes almost everyday. Planes with three, four, or even eight turbines. Planes with multiple wings and two fuselages. My planes were impossible according to the laws of physics, but I tried to create them anyways. In middle school, I became fascinated with building planes. After watching hundreds of hours of FliteTest on YouTube and building their kits, I was ready to create my own. My first idea started with a single wing. I drew up a 3’ 4” long wing on a sheet of foam board and, after drawing three more prototypes, I assembled it. Then, I wired the two servos and a single 2280kv Radial 2218 brushless motor. On its maiden flight, I threw it into the air and it went straight into the ground. Too much weight in the front, Kanishka. Back to the garage. In high school, I became captivated with cars, more specifically hydrogen and electric cars. I created a Hydrogen Car team to compete in a hydrogen fuel cell endurance race. I learned how to make a fuel cell more efficient. Ambitious, I worked tirelessly to get to the world finals. I devised a way to use the motor’s thermal energy and convert it into electrical energy, making our car more efficient. I am a creator. The laws of physics often hinder my creativity, but I keep trying to push the limits of what is possible. In college, I hope to combine my research in hydrogen fuel cells and airplanes to design a new type of plane that isn’t electric or combustion based. I want to major in mechanical engineering to accomplish that. With a minor in AI, I’ll learn how to use neural networks to manage energy consumption in complex systems. — — —
One question + two statements + three sounds = Success. “Want to build a computer?” “Pass me the screwdriver.” “Configure the BIOS.” *BEEEEP... ptung-ptung...* That is how I built my first computer with my dad. I was 10. Computers have been a part of my life from a young age, but it wasn’t until later that I began to realize the degree to which computers can be used to solve the world’s major problems. This past summer at the Beaver Works Summer Institute at MIT, we were asked to brainstorm a problem to solve. Because of my Keratoconus surgery and my knowledge that worldwide blindness is projected to expand exponentially by 2050, my goal is to create artificial sight for the heavily visually impaired. Currently, bionic eyes, which cost over $150,000, allow a person to see only bright flashes of light; I hope to create an affordable device that allows the blind to see as if they had natural 20/20 vision. A fully functional artificial eye requires the melding of many different fields of knowledge, such as the ways in which neurological nerves interact with circuits, the precise robotics needed to install the functionality of a high-resolution camera into a small package, and the artificial intelligence required to understand the habits of a specific human being. I have begun to learn how to utilize artificial intelligence, and I know I will continue expanding my understanding of A.I. at the collegiate level by majoring in Computer Science. Through my numerous difficulties with vision and my computer-centric upbringing as an engineer, I am determined to allow the blind to see again. What problem in the world today can you solve? Bionic eyes cost over $150,000. I can make a difference. *BEEEEP... ptung-ptung…* One question + two statements + three sounds = [Student], Engineer — — —
How to Write the Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Essay For Prompt #2
This is one of those prompts we find “nutritional,” in large part because we’ve had some students who, before this prompt, had never thought before about what exactly “a successful college experience” would look like.
A few key things here:
Spend some time really investigating this. Give yourself space to think expansively. You can think in terms of career if you like, but also take some time to explore aspects of personal growth: Who is the human being you want to become? Are there ways that CMU can help you further develop your values?
Treat some of this essay as a "Why us?" —what does CMU offer that helps you on your path to becoming the human you want to be? Get specific. Show its admissions counselors that you’ve done your research and have thought about why you and the school are a good fit.
You’ll again want something thesis-ish in the essay, though you can build toward it rather than leading with it.
Here’s a sample essay:
My mouse hovered above the "Publish Website" button. The event-management website I developed (Gsca.us), which serves thousands of users in the Indian-American nonprofit I belong to, was about to go live. Filled with anticipation, I looked up at the small team that helped me with the website: the 65-year-old Chairman of GSCA and the 21-year-old college student who helped design the banners and logo for the site. Collaborating with an array of people from all ages, backgrounds, and experiences runs through my years developing software, engaging with my community, and conducting research projects. Therefore, at Carnegie Mellon, I look forward to learning in an environment conducive to group learning. The fact that the walls and windows of many buildings are whiteboards, and that students carry around markers to collaborate and share ideas is a learning method that I resonate with. The different perspectives I will gain through working in groups, and exploring interdisciplinary coursework will be invaluable towards my overall intellectual development. Outside of the classroom, I'll contribute to the variety of Indian cultural events - including Holi, Diwali, and Garba - supported by CMU OM. As a GSCA volunteer for the past 6 years, as mentioned above, my experience anchoring large events that serve thousands of Asian Americans, developing websites and social media publications, and raising funds for natural disasters and underprivileged students means I'll be able to contribute to similar events at CMU. Also, I am excited to engage in the 1000plus Day of Service to positively impact the Pittsburgh area through community service events. By participating in CMU OM and 1000plus Day of Service, I will ultimately learn more about my own culture and character while serving my campus and surrounding city. Additionally, studying interdisciplinary courses in a collaborative setting will culminate in my successful college experience. — — —
Tips + Analysis
Hook the reader. Starting to notice a trend? As with the samples above, this essay dives in with a specific moment that gets us curious, and also immediately communicates aspects of identity and values (“serves thousands of users in the Indian-American nonprofit”).
Use details that connect to core values. For example, 65-year old Chairman, 21-year old college student → varied collaboration, community engagement, effective leadership.
Show how you want to grow, and how a successful college experience plays into that growth. Students carrying around markers → collaboration and intellectual development. Engagement with Indian cultural events → greater engagement with and understanding of their own culture.
Get specific about how Carnegie Mellon fits the college experience you’re looking for, but keep the focus on you. The “Why us?” elements of the essay above get nice and specific about CMU, but they are always linked back to what the student is looking for, and why they and CMU fit well together.
Below are three more sample essays.
I escape English class with excitement and anticipation, bolting towards the school cafeteria to begin organizing the ingredients. Last year, I established Cooking on the Stove (COTS), a club where members could connect through common culinary interests. Through COTS, I discovered how to empower my classmates with a collective drive to experiment and test our creative recipes together. In a different realm, at the American Society of Anesthesiologists conference, I presented my internship data science project to anesthesiologists from across the globe. Navigating through the convention center, I was entranced by the thousands of presentations and products transforming the medical field. When presenting next to other researchers at the conference, I felt part of a global movement to overcome medical problems of every variety. Building connections like these will be an important goal for me in college. On a personal level, I hope to establish COTS at Carnegie Mellon, cooking together with other food fanatics. Off-campus, I’d participate in study abroad with CMU’s chapter of Global Medical Brigades, where I’d get to know the students I travel with and others across the world who share my interests. On a professional level, my college circle would start with research. In particular, I hope to work with faculty in improving the quality and accessibility of healthcare solutions across the world. By working in the Disruptive Health Technology Institute, I will connect with renowned faculty to develop innovative healthcare technologies that will shape the future. While strong academics set the stage for a good education, the true experience is defined by the network of people that I build along the way. In this network, growing individually becomes synonymous with growing together. — — —
At heart, I’m an inventor. In college, I want to take project-based classes and research to apply my learning. At CMU, I’ll be able to conduct research regarding energy at the Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation. With professors like Jay Apt working there, I hope to find a way to make thermoelectric plates flexible and work under fewer temperature constraints. I also want to pursue interdisciplinary activities and courses related to cooking. Every fall, I experiment with different recipes to find the right balance between nutmeg and vanilla extract in my pumpkin pies. At CMU, I can learn more about the science behind spices in Special Topics in Culinary Mechanics class, a unique class that combines engineering and food. I want to understand what is happening to the tissues and cells when a piece of meat is soft versus when hard. I am eager to continue racing and competing at a more advanced level. Racing allows me to learn through pouring hours to explore an idea and then implement it. The mistakes I make introduce me to new topics. I aspire to be the lead engineer of the CMU racing team. Here, I would challenge my engineers to use AI and sensors to find where energy is getting lost through excess heat or sound. By utilizing every bit of energy, we can reduce weight and increase power. I enjoy creating tangible, innovative products and designs because they force me to go beyond the classroom. At CMU, I’ll use the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship to be part of the VentureBridge Program. There, I’ll be able to avoid common startup mistakes, recognize an ideal audience and market, and build a successful product. College, for me, is a chance to bring my ideas to life through research, racing, and creating. — — —
I hope to help the blind to see. My ambitious goal requires an equally ambitious undergraduate learning plan. There will be milestones to meet and communities of learning to foster. In addition to my goal of helping the blind, I also intend to develop an algorithm that can create a fully-functional program through speech, using code generation and natural language processing. The Small Undergraduate Research Grants program will help me take the initial steps toward succeeding. The ultimate goal of this system would be to enable a layperson to create professional-grade software just by stating the intent of a program in an English sentence, which would liberate incredible ideas. The types of problems people could solve would not be limited by money, networking, or education. Taking tangible steps toward achieving this goal is integral to my idea of a successful college experience. I also look forward to joining a community of engineers. From a young age, I’ve worked with those around me to create, design, and innovate. At Carnegie Mellon, I will become involved in organizations such as the Computer and Data Science clubs and will continue to be active in the competition math community through the Math Club. In addition, I intend to pursue a joint major in Statistics and Machine Learning, and take a secondary major in Human-Computer Interactions. Through my clubs and classes, I will foster a community of engineers: they will help me advance my ideas, while I in turn help them nurture theirs. I know my college experience will be successful when, through my coursework as a part of my major, and through my interactions with my community of engineers, I have taken steps towards achieving my milestone of creating a language-to-code translator as well as my ultimate goal of allowing the blind to see. — — —
How to Write the Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Essay For Prompt #3
Now we’re wide open. Having the option to write about anything can be both exciting and daunting—with the myriad elements that make up you, how do you narrow it down? If you’re feeling adrift, here are some options.
Before you start writing, take some time to zoom out and think about your application as a whole—between your main statement, your Activities List, your Additional Info section, and the above prompts, what parts of you is CMU seeing, and, importantly, is there anything they aren’t seeing that they maybe should be?
A couple ways to approach this:
A values scan—look through the elements of your application and think about what core values are being illustrated. Are there any of your core values that you’re leaving out?
The “ Everything I Want Colleges to Know About Me ” exercise (which is useful to have done for any of your applications, not just this CMU prompt).
We’d also recommend thinking about taking the Super Essay approach—are there supplements you’ve written for other schools that could fit nicely here, with modification as needed?
For example, many schools have essay prompts that ask about communities to which you belong, or Stanford has its “What is meaningful to you and why?” prompt. Those essays can frequently fit nicely with this CMU prompt as well.
Ultimately, think of this essay as a way to show another core aspect of how you’ve become who you are.
My room’s got all the necessities--bed, desk, closet, posters--but there’s another desk with a PC, a microphone, a cassette-player, and an assortment of gadgets decorated with knobs and displays. I’ve gradually put my recording studio together over the years--including building the computer from scratch and working jobs to buy sound equipment. In the process, I’ve grown so familiar with it, it’s become a sanctuary--a place where I don’t have to worry about grades, breakups, insecurities. As for Fortaleza, Brazil--its homeness wasn’t so immediately apparent. I once believed that despite learning English from the ground up and struggling with several Americanisms, my Brazilian identity was just a matter of geography. But returning to Fortaleza this year showed me the tethers I was blind to. While browsing a crafts market, I met an elderly gentleman selling cordéis : booklets of long, narrative-driven lyrics musicians purchase and interpret. He told me he wrote them himself, and offered to play a song. And so, listening to this haunting, droning hymn, I looked through the various tales these authors had conceived… stories of Brazilian heroes, thieves, princesses. At that moment, I understood something—I’m not a musician for just any reason. This spirit of poetry, this faith in art and storytelling… it’s in my blood. Even in my home studio in Washington, I feel an energy being channeled from Fortaleza, through my fingers, into the music. As sambista João Bosco puts it: “with so many leaving/on the rocket’s tail/our motherland wept/on the soil of Brazil.” — — —
Discovery and growth. One thing we like about this essay is that we see the writer go on a quick voyage of discovery. They experienced a moment of insight that has been key in their development. One nice way to approach this prompt is by thinking about insights that have been pivotal to your growth.
Tell them by also showing them. The prompt asks you to tell, not show, as in don’t give CMU a link to a website. But still show its admissions counselors you. You can do so through essence objects and details. Essence objects can help to infuse the essay with quick touchstones of character and values. For example, building the computer from scratch and working jobs to buy sound equipment show dedication and resourcefulness. The cordéis show us a sense of cultural value and identity.
The Super Essay approach. This essay was originally written for another school’s prompt regarding a community the student belonged to. With fairly few changes, it can work nicely for this CMU prompt as well.
I recognize quoting Einstein is beyond cliché, but one of his musings was definitive for me: “if I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician.” I’ve always been unwaveringly passionate for music--but Einstein’s observation cemented my passion for astrophysics. There’s an immediate connection between science and music--when recording, I often use graphical analysis to balance frequencies, trigonometry to determine microphone placement, and wave mechanics to gauge acoustics. But I think it goes deeper. The Greeks believed creativity wasn’t creation--it was discovery . This implies art is indistinguishable from science, as both are deeply explorative ; and it aptly fits the connection Einstein alluded to. Musicians speak of artistic trances--where inspiration seems to strike from the ether--and scientists speak of the proverbial apple falling on Newton’s head, of Archimedes’ “eureka!” I’ve realized these catharses are identical--chord progressions come to me just as intuitions for quantum phenomena do. Despite this similarity, choosing between physics and music means sacrificing part of my identity. So does choosing between passions for Brazilian sociology, investigative journalism, and philosophy. But by the time I graduate college, I hope to feel educationally fulfilled, and fulfillment isn’t isolationist--apples fall on physicists’ heads, but they also fall on musicians’, sociologists’, and philosophers' heads. So, I dream of pursuing these fields unbounded by requirements: studying sociology while receiving a formal music education and researching quantum gravity. Although I don’t know what my apple’s going to be, I know that pigeonholing myself will only lead me farther from the tree. — — —
Every weekend I swim from a shark: kicking frantically, surrounded by ice cold ocean water, I am in survival mode. Except in reality I’m treading lightly as to not splash the fellow swimmers in a warm 10x7 meter pool while my five-year-old student, Marcus, follows closely. After he had several unsuccessful attempts at finding an instructor who met his level of energy, I was able to cater to his needs as an autistic child. So every lesson, humming the Jaws theme, I am proud of gaining his trust and engagement while teaching him a serious life-skill. My relationship with Marcus has propelled me forward in my role as a Water Safety Instructor. When I was on the swim team, I never received more than a participation ribbon, but I won lifelong friends and support. So when I hung my own racesuit up to dry, I knew I wanted to help others join the community too. As soon as legally possible, I became a certified instructor and now spend my weekend mornings teaching. I have worked with first timers to competitive swimmers, three-year-olds to middle schoolers, parents buried on their phones to those practically jumping in the pool, and everyone in between. With each interaction, I have learned to trust my intuition and value compromise. This community has taught me how to work with and support anyone, a skill I will carry for life. I have finally earned the gold medal for empowering new members of the swimming community. — — —
The first session of “A Galaxy of Stars: Modern Data in Stellar Astrophysics” ended and our teacher handed out the first homework assignment, encouraging us to work together. Taking his advice to heart, an hour later fifteen students crammed into a hot dorm room and got to work. We shot questions back and forth: “Who understands how to use parallax measurements?” “Did anyone else figure out the code for a stellar color-magnitude diagram?” Everyone brought talents and unique perspectives to the challenge the homework presented, and before we knew it, the work was complete. So we got to talking, and the “astrogang” was formed. Sitting in this humid dorm room, I realized I had found my people. There was Maria who knew all about stars from her telescope, Luca the coding wiz, Noel who loved math more than anyone, and me, the go-to for physics. Everyone in the group was so engaged and excited about science and learning, just like me, and that was an experience I had never had before. Every day after that, we met up to work together, play ping pong under the sun, and scrimmage soccer down by the river. We debated politics, discussed astronomical theories, and compared cultures, each of us learning from what the others shared. As the astrogang, I’m certain we would have expanded our research beyond the stars to encompass black holes or dark matter. But even now, scattered across the globe, we will always be the kid scientists who look to the sky for answers, and I hope that I will meet other students who will continue what the original astrogang began. — — —
Special thanks to Andy for writing this post.
Andrew has worked as an educator, consultant, and curriculum writer for the past 15 years, and attended Stanford and Oxford, earning degrees in Political Science and Drama. He feels most at home on mountain tops.
Top Values: Insight/Growth | Truth | Integrity
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How To Become A Successful College Student (Essay/Paper Sample)
How to become a successful college student.
College can be an intense experience due to the numerous activities one has to assume and decisions to make without anyone’s push within limited time. Thus, to become successful, one needs to attend classes, utilize the school’s resources maximally, develop a rapport with the lecturers, be organized, develop a social life, and study.
First, one should ensure they are organized. The transition from high school to college bring about changes whereby one has to take control of their life and education by themselves without parents or a structured system making it easy to sail through. Therefore, a student striving for triumph has to learn to develop a schedule for their activities from classes, assignments, extra curriculum activities. Additionally, a student can utilize various tools such as applications in their smartphones that brings notifications for every event one is to conduct. Being organized ensures the planning of the most vital aspects of college life and reduces stress and confusion.
Secondly, the student has to attend classes. Going to class is the primary responsibility of a college, as this is where one learns, engages in discussions and makes a good impression on the professors. Failing to attend lectures results in loss of flow of a class and failure to understand the content as deliberations and examples made in class makes it comprehensible. Moreover, some professors grade students based on their attendance. Thus, one would not want to fail on this account. Teachers also appreciate students that show initiative and are likely to recommend them in future as they know and can vouch for them.
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Fourthly, a successful student should utilize all school resources. Colleges provide a broad array of readily available resources that makes a student an all-rounded individual. Resources such as libraries, writing centers, and career counseling offices provide free information that makes a student accomplished. To become successful, one has to utilize all these services as opposed to only attending classes as many opportunities such as career advice, internship placements among others, crucial to a student are available through these resources.
A student should also take the time to study. Succeeding in one’s education is pegged on the effort and time a student utilizes to prepare and review their notes. Studying for about two hours helps a student familiarize with class discussions, understand the content more and retain information. Studying in groups helps students support each other to review course materials and devise ways to excel in exams while acting as a support system in school.
Learning and attending classes in college makes up part of the experience. A social life is also crucial in making a student successful. Social aspects such as skills in associating with people, having interests and making connections contribute to the success of a student. Consequently, involving oneself in clubs and sporting activities helps a student unwind, and follow their passions that may not be in class. Cultural and athletics events help one expand their interests, and understanding of the college. Moreover, such events make excellent opportunities for students to develop friendships and meet new acquaintances.
In conclusion, becoming a successful student should be an easy and attainable undertaking. By organizing one’s life and activities, attending classes, developing a relationship with professors, having a social life, exploring college resources and studying will make college experience less challenging.
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College Experience Essay | Essay on College Experience for Students and Children in English
December 1, 2020 by Prasanna
College Experience Essay: College is the place that allows students to dive deep into the ocean of new beginnings and possibilities. The college phase is one of the most interesting stages in life that gives you an opportunity to explore. The teenage years’ end and the golden period in college create a strong foundation of knowledge.
People in colleges try to cope with the surprisingly strenuous syllabus, learn to sit through a boring lecture, and get the opportunity to learn from some great minds and their research and later apply them.
You can also find more Essay Writing articles on events, persons, sports, technology and many more.
Long and Short Essays on College Experience for Students and Kids in English
We provide students with essay samples on a long essay of 500 words and a short essay of 150 words on the topic of the college experience for reference.
Long Essay on College Experience 500 Words in English
Long Essay on College Experience is usually given to classes 7, 8, 9, and 10.
The ‘college phase’ is one of the most interesting stages in life that gives you an opportunity to explore. College allows all to dive deep into the ocean of new beginnings and possibilities when the teenage years’ end and college life begins. The golden period in college creates a strong foundation of knowledge and equips you for better all the challenges you’ll face in life.
The experience of college will teach you one fundamental thing that life is unpredictable. The experience can be weird, might be good, might be bad, and might not interest you at a time, but expect anything unexpected to happen. For example, one might have a wonderful job at that moment and can also be fired the very next moment.
College life prepares you for all uncertain things like this. It is a beautiful and perfect blend of joy and hardships. You meet different people, interact with them, learn about their different cultures, and grow as a sensible human. One learns and understands how to talk to different people and judge their behaviour, thus helping you with important life skills.
People in college try to cope up with the surprisingly strenuous syllabus, learn to sit through a boring lecture, and one might get the opportunity to learn from some great minds and their researches. And later applying them, like academia, as they say, never lets you go free.
Once you get into a good college, you do get the opportunity to be the artist you always wanted to be, probably through a fine arts campus group. You could be that vocalist, and you could be the dancer of your dreams, you could be that director – college is the Santa Claus that keeps on giving all these wonderful opportunities while you’re in it. There are also campus festivals, which draw many fun crowds from other colleges and let you show off your skills.
Every nook and corner of the college is filled with people and will find a peaceful spot surrounded full with nature, who’s value one realizes after they graduate from the campus. You will always remember the early morning foggy view, adorable moments with hostel “puppy,” or even your grumpy yet caring stationery shopkeeper.
There will be moments in your college days that will hold a lot of sentimental value, and people do miss those years later. The most important aspect of your college life is friendship one makes. Friends in college give you strength, and they are your knights in shining armour for all your life. The occasional adventure surges, planning road trips, and all the impulsive journeys—all of these things make more emotional when you bid adieu to your institution.
So, one fine day you’ll land up smiling silently as you see the pictures from the college of your friends and you having a good time. That’s the beauty of being in college. The life you spent stays with you long after you’ve climbed the ladders of success and also forgotten the name of that cute crush you used to drool over. Life at college is a wild mish-mash of experiences, what with all sorts of hilarious stuff going down in the hostels!
Short Essay on College Experience 150 Words in English
Short Essay on College Experience is usually given to classes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6.
College allows all students to dive deep into the ocean of new beginnings and possibilities and provides the most interesting life stages and allows you to explore.
You meet different people, interact with them, learn about their different cultures, and grow as a sensible person. You could be that vocalist, dancer, or director of your dreams, in campus festivals, which draw many fun crowds from other colleges and let you show off your skills.
The occasional adventure surges, planning road trips, and all the impulsive journeys, one always remember the early morning, adorable moments with hostel “puppy,” or even your stationery shopkeeper. College life beautiful and perfect blend of joy and hardships and prepares you for all uncertain things.
So, one fine day you’ll land up smiling silently as you see the pictures from the college of your friends and you having a good time. The life you spent stays with you long after you’ve climbed the ladders of success.
10 Lines on College Experience Essay in English
1. Colleges are becoming expensive and cannot figure the tuition unless one considering a community college. 2. Graduation requirements are becoming tougher due to the inclusion of some major norms in school. 3. College is the place where women’s populations are often the majority. 4. Campuses should be made impressive as the campus, and its facilities are big selling points. 5. Most colleges do not have a dorm room, and the one which has are small and unimpressive and are still ugly. 6. College must avail of food on the campus 24/7 instead of limited dining hours. 7. Colleges are big business, and the people who do the marketing of such colleges understand that to be more competitive, they must promote more academics or sell the college experience. 8. As college costs go up, the amount of debt students has to take on. 9. College must provide and invest heavily in emergency alarms and security to ensure students’ safe campus. 10. College perceived value is directly connected to their alumni’s success and form partnerships with businesses that will leg up in the recruiting process.
FAQ’s on College Experience Essay
Question 1. What are the benefits of attending college?
Answer: Reasons why College is important and why you might earn a degree: Higher Potential Income, More Competitive in Job Market, Lower Unemployment Rate, Stronger Career Network, Improved Communication, and Analytical Skills.
Question 2. What are the cons of the college?
Answer: College attending a Four-Year College, Tuition Cost are skyrocketing, A degree isn’t yielding the ROI that it used to, Loans and Debt are Crippling College Grads, and college Doesn’t collectively Grow Your Mind.
Question 3. Why do you want to join the college?
Answer: Colleges are important because schools want to ensure that one understands what makes their school unique. So do the college, as can offer you a variety of courses and what you can offer the college.
Question 4. What is the most important thing in college?
Answer: Generally, the most important thing is the GPA and challenging high school curriculum.
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2022-23 Carnegie Mellon (CMU) Essays – Prompts and Tips
When applying to a school like Carnegie Mellon that receives 26,000+ applications each year, it’s important to keep in mind that around 22,000 of this group will ultimately be denied admission. Many of these 22,000 rejected individuals will have straight A’s in high school and/or SATs in the 1500s. Those applying to certain programs—computer science, for example—will face even more harrowing odds. We don’t bring up this harsh reality in an attempt to crush your dreams or deter you from applying. Rather, we want to impart to prospective CMU applicants the need to maximize every component of your application. The aim is to ultimately shine just a touch brighter than your well-qualified competition. This includes the Carnegie Mellon supplemental essays.
(Want to learn more about How to Get Into Carnegie Mellon University? Visit our blog entitled: How to Get Into Carnegie Mellon: Admissions Data and Strategies for all of the most recent admissions data as well as tips for gaining acceptance.)
The three 300-word essays required by Carnegie Mellon give applicants the chance they need to separate themselves from the throngs of other extremely talented and deserving CMU hopefuls. Below are CMU’s supplemental prompts for the 2022-23 admissions cycle along with tips about how to address each one.
Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Essays – #1
Required – (300 word limit)
Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that’s developed over time – what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study?
Here, CMU is asking you to share your story of how you became interested in your selected discipline. You can structure the narrative of this essay as a soup to nuts chronicling of your entire journey toward your discipline of interest. Contrarily, you could share one or two vignettes that illustrate your burgeoning passion for engineering, history, French, computer science, business, psychology, etc. As you begin the prewriting phase, you may want to ask yourself the following questions:
- What is your first strong memory relating to your future area of study?
- What fills you with wonder?
- What books have you read on the subject?
- Do you consume podcasts or documentaries related to your passions?
- Have certain online or print publications helped to fuel your interests?
- What subtopics of your prospective discipline most intrigue you?
- Did a teacher excite you about this topic or was it a parent/relative or outside mentor?
- How did you seek our subject-relevant opportunities outside of the high school classroom?
CMU Supplemental Essays – #2
Many students pursue college for a specific degree, career opportunity or personal goal. whichever it may be, learning will be critical to achieve your ultimate goal. as you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience.
There’s a lot to unpack in this prompt before you even enter the brainstorming phase of the essay-writing process. First they want to know a bit about your goals in earning a CMU degree. These goals could be:
- A combination of two or all three of the previous options.
Given that CMU requires you to apply to a particular college within the larger university, you likely already have a reasonably strong notion of what discipline you hope to study. You’ll definitely want to share everything you already know about the degree you aim to earn. Additionally, you’ll want to discuss how that fits into your larger life plans.
Next, you’ll want to take note of the fact that “learning” is mentioned twice in this prompt, a solid indicator that CMU is sincerely interested in how you will take advantage of the unique learning opportunities available to you at their instruction. While not required, you should consider discussing items such as:
- CMU-specific academic programs , professors, or course offerings.
- Undergraduate research opportunities .
- Study abroad programs .
- The classroom environment at Carnegie Mellon— class size , laboratory settings, etc.
- Campus organizations that will help you continue your learning outside of the classroom.
In short, generic thoughts about how you envision engaging in the learning process throughout your collegiate experience are perfectly fine, but school-specific detail can take an essay from good to great.
CMU supplemental Essays – #3
Consider your application as a whole. what do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. tell us, don’t show us (no websites please)..
After completing your main Common App essay and the first two CMU essays, is there anything that you have yet to share that is absolutely elemental to who you are as a person/student? Without the benefit of an in-person interview, it may feel like you never fully had a chance to connect intimately with a Carnegie Mellon admissions officer. You have a burning sense that you have not communicated the full you, your true essence, your je ne sais quoi, your…you get the idea. If you feel something important about yourself has yet to be communicated elsewhere in the application, then CMU Prompt #3 is the answer to your prayers.
Consider that the admissions reader is already familiar with your academic history, activities, and awards. What don’t they know, or, what could they understand on a deeper level? This could be a particular skill or talent, or something about your character or personality. This one is intentionally open-ended, so use this space to share your most cherished accomplishments or most winning attributes. The university itself is inviting you to “brag” here. We recommend obliging, by presenting the equivalent to a “closing argument” at the end of this admissions trial.
One example of what not to do would be to say, “I work as a camp counselor in the summer” if that was already listed in the Activities section. Another no-no is deciding that the admonition regarding linking to websites doesn’t apply to you, because, well…they simply have to see your art exhibit or performance on stage in Oklahoma! last year. We promise that it is better to take CMU at their word that they prefer that you describe it. This remains true no matter what “it” is.
How important are the Carnegie Mellon supplemental essays?
CMU rates the essays as being an “important” factor in their evaluation process. The essays are listed alongside recommendations, talent/ability, character/personal qualities, first-generation status, and race/ethnicity. The only factors ranked above the essays as being “very important” are: GPA, the rigor of high school coursework, class rank, extracurricular activities, work experience, and volunteer work.
Want Personalized Essay Assistance?
Lastly, if you are interested in working with one of College Transitions’ experienced and knowledgeable essay coaches as you craft your Carnegie Mellon supplemental essays, we encourage you to get a quote today.
Dave has over a decade of professional experience that includes work as a teacher, high school administrator, college professor, and independent educational consultant. He is a co-author of the books The Enlightened College Applicant (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016) and Colleges Worth Your Money (Rowman & Littlefield, 2020).
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Home — Essay Samples — Education — College Students — First Day at College Experience
First Day at College experience
- Subject: Education , Life
- Category: Higher Education , Educational System , Life Experiences
- Essay Topic: College Life , College Students , Expectations
- Published: 07 July 2022
- Downloads: 76
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How to Be Successful in College: 9 Tips
Recognizing your values, building SMART goals, and knowing your learning style can help put you on the path to success in college.
The secret to success in college is remembering that the idea of success is relative. Because we all have different priorities, goals, and values, your success can look quite different from your classmate’s success, and still both of you can be equally successful.
Whether you’re a full-time student on campus, or a nontraditional student balancing coursework with a job, family, or other commitments, being successful in college is within your reach. Here are nine tips to help you achieve your goals :
Know your goals and values.
Turn long-term goals into short-term plans.
Go to class and attend office hours.
Build skills relevant to your coursework.
Assess your learning style.
Try new things.
Maintain a social balance.
Manage your time with intention.
Take care of your health.
Let's take a closer look at how you might approach each of these tips.
How to succeed in college
As you read through these tips, keep in mind that you can take what resonates, leave what doesn’t, and come back to areas that you want to revisit down the line. There’s no “right” path to success—only the right path for you, and you get to decide what that path looks like.
1. Know your goals and values.
Acknowledging your goals can be one way to visualize your version of success. Recognizing what it is that you are trying to achieve by pursuing an education can help illuminate your values, and you can use those values to motivate yourself as you work toward your idea of success.
For example, if your goal is to secure your bachelor’s degree in order to get a job, then you might note that you value independence and providing for yourself. Ultimately, your version of success might be to achieve independence.
Holding onto your values as you interpret your success might help you stay focused on your individual version of success and avoid falling into comparison traps.
Understanding your goals with powerful questions
If you’re having trouble figuring out your goals and values, try asking yourself some powerful questions . Powerful questions can invite exploration and provoke deeper thought. The key is to be honest with yourself and remove judgment. Some examples of powerful questions you might ask yourself are:
- What do I want to get out of college?
- What am I trying to achieve?
- What does success feel like?
- When have I felt successful in the past?
- When I think about a more-perfect future version of myself, what do I see?
Read more: What Are Your Career Goals? How to Find Out
2. Turn long-term goals into short-term plans.
Now that you have an idea of what success looks like for you, you can start translating your vision into an action plan. Action plans divide large goals into smaller, bite-size accomplishments. This helps make those large goals feel more approachable and gives you the opportunity to check in with yourself along the way.
One method to distill long-term goals into short-term plans is to create SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for:
Specific: Identify your task.
Measurable: Determine how you’ll measure your goal.
Achievable: Create realistic goals that you have some control over.
Relevant: Focus on goals that will guide you toward your idea of success.
Time-bound: Set a deadline for yourself to stay on task.
SMART goals can help you stay focused on achieving your ultimate goal in a manageable way.
So, if your long-term goal is to earn your college degree, consider the individual requirements you’ll need to meet in order to earn your degree. One of those requirements might include maintaining a particular minimum GPA. Create SMART goals based on elements you can control, such as the time you spend studying for a class, which can read like this:
“My goal is to start each weekday with one hour of additional study for the first three weeks of class.”
This goal can help guide you toward your target GPA by keeping you focused on one thing you can control: the amount of time you put into studying.
3. Go to class and attend office hours.
No matter your measure of success, one key aspect of achieving it is by showing up. In terms of academic success, showing up to class and during office hours can impact your overall success in a number of ways.
First, class is often the primary place of learning. If a professor is going to introduce a new topic, they’ll often detail that topic in class and may include information not covered in the textbook. Attendance is your best opportunity to get all of the information presented. At the very least, establishing yourself as a constant presence in the class can demonstrate to the professor that you care about doing well.
Take your relationship with your professors and advisors one step further by attending office hours. Many students use office hours to clarify confusing concepts, find out their grade, get advice on future career objectives, or simply socialize.
Professors and advisors have a wealth of knowledge—use that knowledge to move closer to your goals. And later, as you prepare for life after college, whether that involves grad school or applying for jobs, these are the people you might one day ask for a letter of recommendation .
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4. Build skills relevant to your coursework.
As you work toward your degree, you may notice certain types of assignments coming up repeatedly. An English major may have to write a lot of essays, while a chemistry major may work through countless lab reports, and a math major may take sit-down exams that require memorizing complex equations.
If your measure of success involves academic achievement, you might consider honing those skills that you are most frequently tested on. Take note of how you might leverage your strengths, and try not to judge your perceived shortcomings. To help with your areas of improvement, your school or department might have other peer-review resources available to students, like writing workshops or group study sessions.
The benefit of sharpening your academic skills will likely extend after you acquire your degree: oftentimes, the skills that allow you to become academically successful in your major are also the skills that will show up as you pursue a career in a related field.
5. Assess your learning style.
Everyone’s brain processes information slightly differently. Figuring out how you learn best and the study habits that suit your learning style can help build confidence in your ability to succeed academically.
To help decipher when you work best, think about an exam or a paper you did well on. What did you do to prepare? What type of environment did you complete your work in? How long did you spend on the assignment? Did you study alone or with a group?
Study tips for people with ADD, ADHD, or other neurodiversity
Certain forms of neurodivergence can interrupt commonly suggested study tips. If you experience attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or any neurodiversity, you may benefit from additional study techniques. Here are some suggested tips [ 1 ]:
- Develop a routine
- Give yourself additional time to study
- Take breaks
- Rewrite notes
- Stay stimulated by writing in margins, highlighting or reading out loud
- Keep up with a to do list
6. Try new things.
Academic success isn’t the only measure of success in college. You might want to use your time in school to learn something entirely new or pick up skills that aren’t fully explored in your other coursework.
If you value adventure and exploration, another measure of success might be experiential. Do you feel fulfilled by your coursework? Are you challenging yourself in exciting ways?
To benefit from the range of courses that your school has to offer, here and there, take classes that sound fun. Use your elective courses to broaden your horizons. Pick up a minor in a passion subject. It might do wonders for your brain, helping you overcome fears, stimulate creativity, and get to know new sides of yourself [ 2 ].
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7. Maintain a social balance.
Along with academics and experiences, one more way you might measure success in college is according to your social life. One benefit of college is that you are surrounded by similarly minded people, who likely have some similar goals, even if their values and motivations are slightly different.
As you concurrently embark on your similar goals, you may want to consider how you can help each other achieve them. In the short-term, you might trade notes with a classmate or study together for exams.
Meanwhile, the associations you form in college study groups and by participating in clubs and co-curricular activities can evolve into lifelong partnerships. Years after graduating, you might lean on those relationships as you seek new job opportunities or consider other life changes.
8. Manage your time with intention.
Time management is a daily practice. When it comes to achieving success, use your goals to guide the way you manage your time by prioritizing the tasks that will keep you on your desired path.
Of course, it’s not always realistic to expect your priorities to easily align. Sometimes, life happens, and other days, procrastination can get the best of us. (One US survey of 2,219 people found that 88% of the workforce admitted to procrastinating at least one hour a day [ 3 ].) If you can, it might help to build time in your schedule to deal with the unexpected. Some people give themselves earlier due dates on major projects, while others might schedule a few hours a week to sit with their thoughts.
If you find yourself struggling to prioritize your college goals, consider whether your lifestyle and needs allow for you to achieve your goals in the way that you’re currently aiming to. Don’t shy away from a course correct: there are a lot of options when it comes to getting a college degree, and for some lifestyles, learning part-time or earning your degree online may be a more productive fit.
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9. Take care of your health.
Above all, you can’t achieve success without taking care of yourself. Maintaining your mental and physical health are crucial to reaching your goals, regardless of what those goals entail. For example, a lack of sleep can disrupt your body’s ability to function [ 4 ].
If you are taking on responsibilities outside of the classroom, such as work or family obligations, finding balance among your academic and social pursuits can be challenging. Hold space for yourself to notice when you’re feeling off, reprioritize as needed, and seek professional help if necessary.
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Achieving success in college
When you align your actions with your values, you can set yourself up for success in college.
Ready to start pursuing your degree? Consider your goals and lifestyle, and take a look at bachelor’s degree programs on Coursera . Learn at your own pace from anywhere, with course options from top universities.
- 11 Good Study Habits to Develop
What Should I Major In? 5 Things to Evaluate
Should You Go Back to School? 7 Things to Consider
6 Common Career Goals + Examples
How to Choose a Career: 7 Ways to Narrow Your Options
1. The Division of Disability Resources & Educational Services, College of Applied Health Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. " Strategies/Techniques for ADHD , https://www.disability.illinois.edu/strategiestechniques-adhd." Accessed May 12, 2022.
2. Huffpost. " A Look at the Incredible Benefits of Trying New Things , https://www.huffpost.com/entry/a-look-at-the-incredible-benefits-of-trying-new-things_b_59196b49e4b02d6199b2f129." Accessed May 12, 2022.
3. Medium. " How Common Is Procrastination? A Study , https://medium.com/darius-foroux/how-common-is-procrastination-a-study-80869467c3f3." Accessed May 12, 2022.
4. Forbes. " New Studies Show What Sleep Loss Does To The Brain And Cognition , https://www.forbes.com/sites/alicegwalton/2019/11/29/new-studies-show-what-sleep-loss-does-to-the-brain-and-cognition/?sh=f1ee0b968e30." Accessed May 12, 2022.
This content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.
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5 tips on how to nail your college application essay
When it comes to applying for college, many students are faced with the same question, “How to write an essay for your college application?”
The essay can be daunting, but it can determine whether you get into your preferred uni.
In fact, your college essays account for 25% of your overall application to get into schools like Harvard University, Stanford University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and more.
The competition gets more intense at these schools, where applicants have exceptional grades, test scores and extracurricular experience.
As such, nailing your college application essay can help you stand out from other applicants.
It is an excellent opportunity to share your story and why you would make a good addition to the university. Admission officers are looking to understand your background, personality and values.
While this adds a lot of pressure on your college essay, there is no need to worry just yet. Here are five tips on how to write an essay that will help you stand apart from other applicants:
How to write an essay to nail your college application:
Grab the reader from the start
Grab a reader’s attention from the start —remember that you are competing with hundreds of other applicants.
Let’s start with the thesis statement: the backbone of your essay and the first sentence a reader will read.
Start your essay with a clear sentence that immediately seizes the reader’s imagination.
You could start with a bold statement, a quote, a question or even a descriptive scene.
Beginning with a powerful and clear thesis statement will ensure your reader is hooked and help you with the writing process.
Try something different
Admissions officers read an unbelievable number of college essays.
Many students would write essays with facts, figures and their past experiences — so try something different by writing an essay that your grades can’t capture.
After all, colleges are interested in learning about who you are as a person and what you can bring to the incoming class.
It doesn’t matter if you have yet started your own business or spent the summer volunteering.
Share your unique qualities or what you learned from your losses and how it inspired your educational journey.
Bring your essay to life using details, examples and vivid imagery. Source: David Becker/AFP
Show, don’t tell
Instead of simply stating facts and information, try to get your reader to visualise what you are trying to say.
Writing the sequence of events can be dull, so bring your story to life by showing the reader what you mean.
Take “I like to play football”, for example.
You could say:
“My heart was beating fast as I ran across the court to make the shot — two seconds on the clock, one second — and score!”
The results? Your essay will be more memorable, clear and enjoyable for your reader.
It’s easy to procrastinate.
When it comes to writing your college essay, however, it is best to start early to give yourself enough time to perfect it.
Before you start, coming up with a topic will take up a fair share of brainstorming.
By starting early, you will have time to write several drafts and make edits before you reach your final copy. . Drafting allows you to put your ideas on paper to rethink and rewrite them.
With this, you can ask yourself whether your ideas are relevant and logical or if additional information is required.
Proofread your essay
So, you finished writing.
You might be tempted to submit your essay and not have to look at it again.
But taking a second look can help you nail your college essay more than you think.
Coming back to your work after a few hours or even a day — if you have the time — will allow you to spot any subtle mistakes you may not have noticed.
However, you might miss out on some minor mistakes — even with a fresh set of eyes.
Thankfully, many tools and resources are available online to help you with this.
Currently, the best app on the market for this is Grammarly .
The website uses artificial intelligence to review your spelling, grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure. The app even provides suggestions to rephrase your sentences.
All you have to do is upload your essay on the website, wait a few seconds, and the tool will run through any mistakes made.
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Success in College Essay Examples
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Sociology , Education , Workplace , Leadership , Human Resource Management , Students , Success , Classroom
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An undergraduate degree remains one of the most important factors in securing a job after college. Completing college or getting a high school diploma is not enough. Students need to obtain a degree, which is the real measure of success in college. This may be achieved through three main approaches as indicated in this paper: improving academic self-efficacy; supporting the needs of students; and through assessment and feedback.
There is a constantly increasing importance for obtaining an undergraduate degree. This comes against a backdrop of the problems of student retention, which continue to be costly to individual students, families and universities. Research shows that individuals over 25 years who have a bachelor’s degree have a median income that is 35% higher than individuals that have just completed college but do not have a degree (U.S. Census Bureau, 2011). In addition to this, individuals with an undergraduate degree have a better chance of securing a good job. Despite these facts, only 55% of students who enroll full-time for the first time in a 4-year institution are earning a degree. This essay provides information on how students can become successful in college.
First, one approach to student success in college is by improving academic self-efficacy. This is the student’s confidence in their ability to be successful in their college tasks. However, the student experience in college is not just about academics. This has led to the expansion of academic self-efficacy to college self-efficacy (Wright, Jenkins-Guarnieri & Murdock, 2012). Increased self-efficacy is associated with increase academic success as well as persistence through college. For a student to be successful, they have to believe in their ability to succeed in college academic as well as in the social experience provided by the college. Improving academic and social self-efficacy of students may be achieved through mentoring relationships and increased support systems. College and career counselors can improve the self-efficacy of students, and eventually their academic success by encouraging them to identify mentors and joint activities related to college success.
Secondly, institutions should support the needs of students. Attentive leadership contributes to success for college students. This happens when attentive leadership is accompanied by intentional institutional practices for student success and degree completion. To achieve this, targeted services and programs implemented during the first year of study improve the students’ readiness to academics. Supplemental instruction for courses that have high rates of failure may also improve student outcomes (Rath, Rock & Laferriere, 2013). The encouragement of affinity groups, made up of students with common likes, goals and interests help institutions have a closer interaction with students, and this has been noted to contribute to student success. Involvement with peers, faculty and staff members especially in classroom-related activities leads to important social affiliations and support which are all necessary for success in the classroom.
Thirdly, assessment and feedback is a proven approach for improving student success. Students are likely to succeed in classroom where they are assessed and provided with frequent feedback regarding their performance. This is important because it enables them, their faculty and staff to adjust in a manner that promotes better student success academically (Rath, Rock & Laferriere, 2013). This is important especially in the first year when students are in the process of trying to match their behavior to the social and academic demands of college life.
Success in college may be equated to the attainment of a degree. There are different approaches which may be used to make students successful in college. First is by improving the academic and college self-efficacy. This is improving the belief that students can excel academically and socially in college. Secondly, institutions should support the needs of students. This is achieved through attentive leadership, which provides students with opportunities to interact with their peers, staff and faculty to foster success. Thirdly, assessment and feedback creates focus and elicits responses aimed at improvement.
Rath, Rock., & Laferriere, A. (2013). Pathways through College: Strategies for Improving Community College Student Success . Our Piece of the Pie, 3(2), 6-28. U.S. Census Bureau. (2011).Income, poverty, and health insurance coverage in the United States: 2010(Current population reports, P60-239). Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. Retrieved March 9, 2012, from http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/income/publications/reports.html Wright, S. L., Jenkins-Guarnieri, M. A., & Murdock, J. L. (2012). Career Development Among First-Year College Students: College Self-Efficacy, Student Persistence, and Academic Success. Journal of Career Development, 40(4), 292-310.
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- College Essay Examples | What Works and What Doesn’t
College Essay Examples | What Works and What Doesn't
Published on November 8, 2021 by Kirsten Courault . Revised on November 4, 2022.
One effective method for improving your college essay is to read example essays . Here are three sample essays, each with a bad and good version to help you improve your own essay.
Table of contents
Essay 1: sharing an identity or background through a montage, essay 2: overcoming a challenge, a sports injury narrative, essay 3: showing the influence of an important person or thing, frequently asked questions about college application essays.
This essay uses a montage structure to show snapshots of a student’s identity and background. The writer builds her essay around the theme of the five senses, sharing memories she associates with sight, sound, smell, touch, and taste.
In the weak rough draft, there is little connection between the individual anecdotes, and they do not robustly demonstrate the student’s qualities.
In the final version, the student uses an extended metaphor of a museum to create a strong connection among her stories, each showcasing a different part of her identity. She draws a specific personal insight from each memory and uses the stories to demonstrate her qualities and values.
How My Five Senses Record My Life
Throughout my life, I have kept a record of my life’s journey with my five senses. This collection of memories matters a great deal because I experience life every day through the lens of my identity.
My classmate pulls one eye up and the other down.
“Look what my parents did to me!”
No matter how many times he repeats it, the other kids keep laughing. I focus my almond-shaped eyes on the ground, careful not to attract attention to my discomfort, anger, and shame. How could he say such a mean thing about me? What did I do to him? Joseph’s words would engrave themselves into my memory, making me question my appearance every time I saw my eyes in the mirror.
Soaking in overflowing bubble baths with Andrew Lloyd Webber belting from the boombox.
Listening to “Cell Block Tango” with my grandparents while eating filet mignon at a dine-in show in Ashland.
Singing “The Worst Pies in London” at a Korean karaoke club while laughing hysterically with my brother, who can do an eerily spot-on rendition of Sweeney Todd.
Taking car rides with Mom in the Toyota Sequoia as we compete to hit the high note in “Think of Me” from The Phantom of the Opera . Neither of us stands a chance!
The sweet scent of vegetables, Chinese noodles, and sushi wafts through the room as we sit around the table. My grandma presents a good-smelling mixture of international cuisine for our Thanksgiving feast. My favorite is the Chinese food that she cooks. Only the family prayer stands between me and the chance to indulge in these delicious morsels, comforting me with their familiar savory scents.
I rinse a faded plastic plate decorated by my younger sister at the Waterworks Art Center. I wear yellow rubber gloves to protect my hands at Mom’s insistence, but I can still feel the warm water that offers a bit of comfort as I finish the task at hand. The crusted casserole dish with stubborn remnants from my dad’s five-layer lasagna requires extra effort, so I fill it with Dawn and scalding water, setting it aside to soak. I actually don’t mind this daily chore.
I taste sweat on my upper lip as I fight to continue pedaling on a stationary bike. Ava’s next to me and tells me to go up a level. We’re biking buddies, dieting buddies, and Saturday morning carbo-load buddies. After the bike display hits 30 minutes, we do a five-minute cool down, drink Gatorade, and put our legs up to rest.
My five senses are always gathering new memories of my identity. I’m excited to expand my collection.
Word count: 455
College essay checklist
Topic and structure
- I’ve selected a topic that’s meaningful to me.
- My essay reveals something different from the rest of my application.
- I have a clear and well-structured narrative.
- I’ve concluded with an insight or a creative ending.
Writing style and tone
- I’ve crafted an introduction containing vivid imagery or an intriguing hook that grabs the reader’s attention.
- I’ve written my essay in a way that shows instead of tells.
- I’ve used appropriate style and tone for a college essay.
- I’ve used specific, vivid personal stories that would be hard to replicate.
- I’ve demonstrated my positive traits and values in my essay.
- My essay is focused on me, not another person or thing.
- I’ve included self-reflection and insight in my essay.
- I’ve respected the word count , remaining within 10% of the upper word limit.
Making Sense of My Identity
Welcome to The Rose Arimoto Museum. You are about to enter the “Making Sense of My Identity” collection. Allow me to guide you through select exhibits, carefully curated memories from Rose’s sensory experiences.
First, the Sight Exhibit.
“Look what my parents did to me!”
No matter how many times he repeats it, the other kids keep laughing. I focus my almond-shaped eyes on the ground, careful not to attract attention as my lip trembles and palms sweat. Joseph couldn’t have known how his words would engrave themselves into my memory, making me question my appearance every time I saw my eyes in the mirror.
Ten years later, these same eyes now fixate on an InDesign layout sheet, searching for grammar errors while my friend Selena proofreads our feature piece on racial discrimination in our hometown. As we’re the school newspaper editors, our journalism teacher Ms. Riley allows us to stay until midnight to meet tomorrow’s deadline. She commends our work ethic, which for me is fueled by writing一my new weapon of choice.
Next, you’ll encounter the Sound Exhibit.
Still, the world is my Broadway as I find my voice on stage.
Just below, enter the Smell Exhibit.
While I help my Pau Pau prepare dinner, she divulges her recipe for cha siu bau, with its soft, pillowy white exterior hiding the fragrant filling of braised barbecue pork inside. The sweet scent of candied yams, fun see , and Spam musubi wafts through the room as we gather around our Thankgsiving feast. After our family prayer, we indulge in these delicious morsels until our bellies say stop. These savory scents of my family’s cultural heritage linger long after I’ve finished the last bite.
Next up, the Touch Exhibit.
I rinse a handmade mug that I had painstakingly molded and painted in ceramics class. I wear yellow rubber gloves to protect my hands at Mom’s insistence, but I can still feel the warm water that offers a bit of comfort as I finish the task at hand. The crusted casserole dish with stubborn remnants from my dad’s five-layer lasagna requires extra effort, so I fill it with Dawn and scalding water, setting it aside to soak. For a few fleeting moments, as I continue my nightly chore, the pressure of my weekend job, tomorrow’s calculus exam, and next week’s track meet are washed away.
Finally, we end with the Taste Exhibit.
My legs fight to keep pace with the stationary bike as the salty taste of sweat seeps into corners of my mouth. Ava challenges me to take it up a level. We always train together一even keeping each other accountable on our strict protein diet of chicken breasts, broccoli, and Muscle Milk. We occasionally splurge on Saturday mornings after interval training, relishing the decadence of everything bagels smeared with raspberry walnut cream cheese. But this is Wednesday, so I push myself. I know that once the digital display hits 30:00, we’ll allow our legs to relax into a five-minute cool down, followed by the fiery tang of Fruit Punch Gatorade to rehydrate.
Thank you for your attention. This completes our tour. I invite you to rejoin us for next fall’s College Experience collection, which will exhibit Rose’s continual search for identity and learning.
Word count: 649
- I’ve crafted an essay introduction containing vivid imagery or an intriguing hook that grabs the reader’s attention.
This essay uses a narrative structure to recount how a student overcame a challenge, specifically a sports injury. Since this topic is often overused, the essay requires vivid description, a memorable introduction and conclusion , and interesting insight.
The weak rough draft contains an interesting narrative, insight, and vivid imagery, but it has an overly formal tone that distracts the reader from the story. The student’s use of elaborate vocabulary in every sentence makes the essay sound inauthentic and stilted.
The final essay uses a more natural, conversational tone and chooses words that are vivid and specific without being pretentious. This allows the reader to focus on the narrative and appreciate the student’s unique insight.
One fateful evening some months ago, a defensive linebacker mauled me, his 212 pounds indisputably alighting upon my ankle. Ergo, an abhorrent cracking of calcified tissue. At first light the next day, I awoke cognizant of a new paradigm—one sans football—promulgated by a stabbing sensation that would continue to haunt me every morning of this semester.
It’s been an exceedingly taxing semester not being able to engage in football, but I am nonetheless excelling in school. That twist of fate never would have come to pass if I hadn’t broken my ankle. I still limp down the halls at school, but I’m feeling less maudlin these days. My friends don’t steer clear anymore, and I have a lot more of them. My teachers, emboldened by my newfound interest in learning, continually invite me to learn more and do my best. Football is still on hold, but I feel like I’m finally playing a game that matters.
Five months ago, right after my ill-fated injury, my friends’ demeanor became icy and remote, although I couldn’t fathom why. My teachers, in contrast, beckoned me close and invited me on a new learning journey. But despite their indubitably kind advances, even they recoiled when I drew near.
A few weeks later, I started to change my attitude vis-à-vis my newfound situation and determined to put my energy toward productive ends (i.e., homework). I wasn’t enamored with school. I never had been. Nevertheless, I didn’t abhor it either. I just preferred football.
My true turn of fate came when I started studying more and participating in class. I started to enjoy history class, and I grew interested in reading more. I discovered a volume of poems written by a fellow adventurer on the road of life, and I loved it. I ravenously devoured everything in the writer’s oeuvre .
As the weeks flitted past, I found myself spending my time with a group of people who were quite different from me. They participated in theater and played instruments in marching band. They raised their hands in class when the teacher posed a question. Because of their auspicious influence, I started raising my hand too. I am no longer vapid, and I now have something to say.
I am certain that your school would benefit from my miraculous academic transformation, and I entreat you to consider my application to your fine institution. Accepting me to your university would be an unequivocally righteous decision.
Word count: 408
- I’ve chosen a college essay topic that’s meaningful to me.
- I’ve respected the essay word count , remaining within 10% of the upper word limit.
As I step out of bed, the pain shoots through my foot and up my leg like it has every morning since “the game.” That night, a defensive linebacker tackled me, his 212 pounds landing decidedly on my ankle. I heard the sound before I felt it. The next morning, I awoke to a new reality—one without football—announced by a stabbing sensation that would continue to haunt me every morning of this semester.
My broken ankle broke my spirit.
My friends steered clear of me as I hobbled down the halls at school. My teachers tried to find the delicate balance between giving me space and offering me help. I was as unsure how to deal with myself as they were.
In time, I figured out how to redirect some of my frustration, anger, and pent-up energy toward my studies. I had never not liked school, but I had never really liked it either. In my mind, football practice was my real-life classroom, where I could learn all I ever needed to know.
Then there was that day in Mrs. Brady’s history class. We sang a ridiculous-sounding mnemonic song to memorize all the Chinese dynasties from Shang to Qing. I mumbled the words at first, but I got caught up in the middle of the laughter and began singing along. Starting that day, I began browsing YouTube videos about history, curious to learn more. I had started learning something new, and, to my surprise, I liked it.
With my afternoons free from burpees and scrimmages, I dared to crack open a few more of my books to see what was in them. That’s when my English poetry book, Paint Me Like I Am , caught my attention. It was full of poems written by students my age from WritersCorps. I couldn’t get enough.
I wasn’t the only one who was taken with the poems. Previously, I’d only been vaguely aware of Christina as one of the weird kids I avoided. Crammed in the margins of her high-top Chuck Taylors were scribbled lines of her own poetry and infinite doodles. Beyond her punk rock persona was a sensitive artist, puppy-lover, and environmental activist that a wide receiver like me would have never noticed before.
With Christina, I started making friends with people who once would have been invisible to me: drama geeks, teachers’ pets, band nerds. Most were college bound but not to play a sport. They were smart and talented, and they cared about people and politics and all sorts of issues that I hadn’t considered before. Strangely, they also seemed to care about me.
I still limp down the halls at school, but I don’t seem to mind as much these days. My friends don’t steer clear anymore, and I have a lot more of them. My teachers, excited by my newfound interest in learning, continually invite me to learn more and do my best. Football is still on hold, but I feel like I’m finally playing a game that matters.
My broken ankle broke my spirit. Then, it broke my ignorance.
Word count: 512
Prevent plagiarism. Run a free check.
This essay uses a narrative structure to show how a pet positively influenced the student’s values and character.
In the weak draft, the student doesn’t focus on himself, instead delving into too much detail about his dog’s positive traits and his grandma’s illness. The essay’s structure is meandering, with tangents and details that don’t communicate any specific insight.
In the improved version, the student keeps the focus on himself, not his pet. He chooses the most relevant stories to demonstrate specific qualities, and the structure more clearly builds up to an insightful conclusion.
Man’s Best Friend
I desperately wanted a cat. I begged my parents for one, but once again, my sisters overruled me, so we drove up the Thompson Valley Canyon from Loveland to Estes Park to meet our newest family member. My sisters had already hatched their master plan, complete with a Finding Nemo blanket to entice the pups. The blanket was a hit with all of them, except for one—the one who walked over and sat in my lap. That was the day that Francisco became a Villanova.
Maybe I should say he was mine because I got stuck with all the chores. As expected, my dog-loving sisters were nowhere to be found! My mom was “extra” with all the doggy gear. Cisco even had to wear these silly little puppy shoes outside so that when he came back in, he wouldn’t get the carpets dirty. If it was raining, my mother insisted I dress Cisco in a ridiculous yellow raincoat, but, in my opinion, it was an unnecessary source of humiliation for poor Cisco. It didn’t take long for Cisco to decide that his outerwear could be used as toys in a game of Keep Away. As soon as I took off one of his shoes, he would run away with it, hiding under the bed where I couldn’t reach him. But, he seemed to appreciate his ensemble more when we had to walk through snowdrifts to get his job done.
When my abuela was dying from cancer, we went in the middle of the night to see her before she passed. I was sad and scared. But, my dad let me take Cisco in the car, so Cisco cuddled with me and made me feel much better. It’s like he could read my mind. Once we arrived at the hospital, the fluorescent lighting made the entire scene seem unreal, as if I was watching the scene unfold through someone else’s eyes. My grandma lay calmly on her bed, smiling at us even through her last moments of pain. I disliked seeing the tubes and machines hooked up to her. It was unnatural to see her like this一it was so unlike the way I usually saw her beautiful in her flowery dress, whistling a Billie Holiday tune and baking snickerdoodle cookies in the kitchen. The hospital didn’t usually allow dogs, but they made a special exception to respect my grandma’s last wishes that the whole family be together. Cisco remained at the foot of the bed, intently watching abuela with a silence that seemed more effective at communicating comfort and compassion than the rest of us who attempted to offer up words of comfort that just seemed hollow and insincere. It was then that I truly appreciated Cisco’s empathy for others.
As I accompanied my dad to pick up our dry cleaner’s from Ms. Chapman, a family friend asked, “How’s Cisco?” before even asking about my sisters or me. Cisco is the Villanova family mascot, a Goldendoodle better recognized by strangers throughout Loveland than the individual members of my family.
On our summer trip to Boyd Lake State Park, we stayed at the Cottonwood campground for a breathtaking view of the lake. Cisco was allowed to come, but we had to keep him on a leash at all times. After a satisfying meal of fish, our entire family walked along the beach. Cisco and I led the way while my mom and sisters shuffled behind. Cisco always stopped and refused to move, looking back to make sure the others were still following. Once satisfied that everyone was together, he would turn back around and continue prancing with his golden boy curly locks waving in the chilly wind.
On the beach, Cisco “accidentally” got let off his leash and went running maniacally around the sand, unfettered and free. His pure joy as he raced through the sand made me forget about my AP Chem exam or my student council responsibilities. He brings a smile not only to my family members but everyone around him.
Cisco won’t live forever, but without words, he has impressed upon me life lessons of responsibility, compassion, loyalty, and joy. I can’t imagine life without him.
Word count: 701
I quickly figured out that as “the chosen one,” I had been enlisted by Cisco to oversee all aspects of his “business.” I learned to put on Cisco’s doggie shoes to keep the carpet clean before taking him out一no matter the weather. Soon after, Cisco decided that his shoes could be used as toys in a game of Keep Away. As soon as I removed one of his shoes, he would run away with it, hiding under the bed where I couldn’t reach him. But, he seemed to appreciate his footwear more after I’d gear him up and we’d tread through the snow for his daily walks.
One morning, it was 7:15 a.m., and Alejandro was late again to pick me up. “Cisco, you don’t think he overslept again, do you?” Cisco barked, as if saying, “Of course he did!” A text message would never do, so I called his dad, even if it was going to get him in trouble. There was no use in both of us getting another tardy during our first-period class, especially since I was ready on time after taking Cisco for his morning outing. Alejandro was mad at me but not too much. He knew I had helped him out, even if he had to endure his dad’s lecture on punctuality.
Another early morning, I heard my sister yell, “Mom! Where are my good ballet flats? I can’t find them anywhere!” I hesitated and then confessed, “I moved them.” She shrieked at me in disbelief, but I continued, “I put them in your closet, so Cisco wouldn’t chew them up.” More disbelief. However, this time, there was silence instead of shrieking.
Last spring, Cisco and I were fast asleep when the phone rang at midnight. Abuela would not make it through the night after a long year of chemo, but she was in Pueblo, almost three hours away. Sitting next to me for that long car ride on I-25 in pitch-black darkness, Cisco knew exactly what I needed and snuggled right next to me as I petted his coat in a rhythm while tears streamed down my face. The hospital didn’t usually allow dogs, but they made a special exception to respect my grandma’s last wishes that the whole family be together. Cisco remained sitting at the foot of the hospital bed, intently watching abuela with a silence that communicated more comfort than our hollow words. Since then, whenever I sense someone is upset, I sit in silence with them or listen to their words, just like Cisco did.
The other day, one of my friends told me, “You’re a strange one, Josue. You’re not like everybody else but in a good way.” I didn’t know what he meant at first. “You know, you’re super responsible and grown-up. You look out for us instead of yourself. Nobody else does that.” I was a bit surprised because I wasn’t trying to do anything different. I was just being me. But then I realized who had taught me: a fluffy little puppy who I had wished was a cat! I didn’t choose Cisco, but he certainly chose me and, unexpectedly, became my teacher, mentor, and friend.
Word count: 617
A standout college essay has several key ingredients:
- A unique, personally meaningful topic
- A memorable introduction with vivid imagery or an intriguing hook
- Specific stories and language that show instead of telling
- Vulnerability that’s authentic but not aimed at soliciting sympathy
- Clear writing in an appropriate style and tone
- A conclusion that offers deep insight or a creative ending
There are no set rules for how to structure a college application essay , but these are two common structures that work:
- A montage structure, a series of vignettes with a common theme.
- A narrative structure, a single story that shows your personal growth or how you overcame a challenge.
Avoid the five-paragraph essay structure that you learned in high school.
Though admissions officers are interested in hearing your story, they’re also interested in how you tell it. An exceptionally written essay will differentiate you from other applicants, meaning that admissions officers will spend more time reading it.
You can use literary devices to catch your reader’s attention and enrich your storytelling; however, focus on using just a few devices well, rather than trying to use as many as possible.
Most importantly, your essay should be about you , not another person or thing. An insightful college admissions essay requires deep self-reflection, authenticity, and a balance between confidence and vulnerability.
Your essay shouldn’t be a résumé of your experiences but instead should tell a story that demonstrates your most important values and qualities.
When revising your college essay , first check for big-picture issues regarding message, flow, tone, style , and clarity. Then, focus on eliminating grammar and punctuation errors.
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Sat / act prep online guides and tips, 4 tips for stand-out carnegie mellon essays.
Carnegie Mellon is ranked among the top 25 universities in the nation , so you'll need to have an impressive application—with stand-out essays, of course!—in order to get admitted. Applicants must submit a total of four Carnegie Mellon essays, three of which comprise the Carnegie Mellon supplement.
Keep reading to learn what the current Carnegie Mellon essay prompts are, what topics you could write about, and what qualities make for a great Carnegie Mellon essay.
Feature Image: Mathieu Thouvenin /Flickr
What Are the Carnegie Mellon Essay Prompts?
In addition to the personal statement you must write for the Common App (for which you get to select one out of seven possible prompts), Carnegie Mellon requires all applicants to submit three supplemental essays; these essays make up the Carnegie Mellon Supplement.
Applicants are not allowed to submit other supplemental materials with their applications, such as websites, artwork, or resumes. (Note that the only exception to this is if you're applying to a school that requires additional materials , such as the School of Architecture.)
Each essay may be up to 300 words long, making them a little shorter than your typical personal statement for college, which is usually around 500-600 words.
So what are the Carnegie Mellon essay prompts? Let's take a look:
Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that's developed over time—what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study?
Many students pursue college for a specific degree, career opportunity or personal goal. Whichever it may be, learning will be critical to achieve your ultimate goal. As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience?
Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee's consideration? Highlight something that's important to you or something you haven't had a chance to share. Tell us, don't show us (no websites please).
As you can see, each Carnegie Mellon essay you must write will focus on something different about yourself. Specifically, you must explain the following in your essays:
- For Essay 1, what you plan to major in and why
- For Essay 2, what you hope to get out of attending college
- For Essay 3, something you want to emphasize about yourself
How should you write each Carnegie Mellon essay? We give you specific tips next.
All Carnegie Mellon Essay Prompts, Analyzed
In this section, we'll go over the three Carnegie Mellon essay prompts in detail, giving you key tips so you can ensure your essays stand out from the rest of the crowd.
Carnegie Mellon Essay 1: Your Intended Major
Though it might look a little wordy, all this Carnegie Mellon essay prompt is really asking is, "Why this major?" More specifically, this prompt wants you to relate the intellectual path you've taken by explaining the experiences, people, and/or events that have led you to want to major in this particular field.
By far the most effective way to answer this prompt is to tell a compelling story about how you came to be interested in your intended major. Think about the most important moments from your life that showcase your love of what you want to study, and then write about those.
For example, say you plan to major in musical composition. You could start off by recounting the first time you tried to write a piece of music on your family's piano and how hard it was. However, you really enjoyed the process of creating something new. This prompted you to enroll in weekly piano lessons; you also continued to compose piano pieces in your spare time. As a sophomore, you decided to enter your school's talent show and ended up winning with a musical piece you'd composed.
While you don't need to stick to chronological order, using this organization ensures your essay is easy to follow and clearly illustrates how you progressed from someone who knew nothing about the field to someone now highly devoted to it.
In addition, be sure to focus on not only how you became interested in your major but also how this journey of discovering your passion has affected you and your goals. For example, perhaps you want to major in architecture because you hope to use your skills to encourage eco-friendly living and therefore combat the effects of climate change.
It's also a good idea to mention, explicitly or implicitly, how Carnegie Mellon will help you accomplish your goals in your intended field. You could talk briefly about a particular faculty member in your field whom you hope to work with, an expensive piece of equipment offered at Carnegie Mellon, or specific professional opportunities available to students.
Finally, be careful not to exaggerate. Don't say you suddenly developed an interest in literature after reading The Great Gatsby for English class if you actually loathed the book or had a passion for literature well before then.
It's OK if there wasn't one single moment in your life that made you realize this major was the right one for you. Instead of acting as though some particular incident was more significant than it actually was, just focus on the overall journey you took to get to the point you're at now—that is, the major you've chosen to pursue.
Carnegie Mellon Essay 2: Why You're Going to College
Going to college isn't just about getting your degree. That's part of it, of course—you'd feel pretty cheated if you got all the way through college only to find out that you weren't getting your degree—but learning new things and growing as a person are also really important.
In this essay, Carnegie Mellon wants to see you discuss how learning, not just having a degree, will represent your growth in college. That might feel a little intimidating since you haven't actually left for college yet, but you have two important things to draw on: experience in your prior education, and your hopes for the future.
When responding to this prompt, think less about the individual classes you'll take, what grades you'll get in them, or what essays you'll write. Think about the learning process, all the little things that go into your education beyond the grades and assignments. How do you learn? And beyond that, what did you learn?
Think about what having a "successful college experience" would look like for you. When you graduate, what knowledge and experience do you hope to have? What unique experiences will you have at Carnegie Mellon that will shape the person you ultimately want to become?
This is a time to be specific. Maybe you see yourself as belonging to a thriving intellectual community, and thought-provoking discussion is one of the ways that you learn best. You can look at what groups there are on campus, for example, and see which ones you'd like to join.
Joining re:verb might be a way that you connect with other people who love having thought-provoking discussions, or maybe you're drawn more toward MOSIAC to learn about concepts like intersectionality. You can identify groups that appeal to you in your specific niche, and mention them in your essay as places where you hope to find your intellectual community.
Of course, that's not the only way to go about it. The important thing you need to convey is that you have an interest not just in attaining your diploma, but in the experience of learning. How you do that is up to you—you can describe how you learn and how Carnegie Mellon will help enrich you as a person through their teaching methods, through being around other accomplished and intellectual individuals, or by naming specific clubs, groups, or classes you want to be part of.
Show Carnegie Mellon how you learn and how they'll contribute to your specific goals, and you'll be on the right track!
Carnegie Mellon Essay 3: Something Important About You
This essay prompt is the most open-ended of the three and a great opportunity to really dig into any important attributes of yourself that you feel you didn't get to write enough about or at all in other parts of your application.
Did you write about something in another essay, such as the one you wrote for the Common App, that you wish to talk about more here? Do you want to write about something that's important to you and that you haven't had a chance to elaborate on yet?
Your topics are pretty endless here —just make sure whatever you write about for this essay is revealing something important that you think the admissions committee should know about you.
This could be a specific personality trait —maybe you want to emphasize your leadership skills by talking about your role as team leader at the local youth club—or something about your life that's had a major impact on how you see yourself and your future.
Here are some topics you could write about (but don't feel limited by these suggestions!):
- A specific incident that holds importance for you, and what it taught you about your academic and/or professional interests, your goals, your personality, etc.
- Someone you know who has impacted you in a significant way, and how that person has specifically influenced your interests and/or goals
- An explanation for something that negatively impacted your grades or another part of your application —for example, perhaps you spent a lot of time taking care of a sick relative during your sophomore year of high school, which caused your grades to dip slightly
- A particular interest, passion, hobby, or skill you have, and what you've gained, either intellectually or emotionally, from it
Once again, don't try to write about what you think the CMU admissions committee wants to read—be honest about what's important to you and why. If you volunteered somewhere a few times but didn't enjoy it or gain anything valuable from it, do not write about it here!
Similarly, don't be afraid to focus on something seemingly mundane. Just be sure you're using the topic you choose—even if it's pretty commonplace—to ultimately reveal something important about you. So, no, it's probably not a good idea to write about how you spend hours on Instagram every day, since this hobby isn't really revealing anything significant about you, your goals, or your personal growth.
2 Real Carnegie Mellon Essay Examples + Analysis
In order to write a great Carnegie Mellon essay, it helps to see what kinds of essays actually got applicants accepted to this prestigious university. Here, we give you two real Carnegie Mellon essay examples we found online and explain what makes them successful.
Carnegie Mellon Essay Example 1
This first of the two Carnegie Mellon essay examples comes from the college essays website Essays That Worked . The essay is quite long— more than 650 words! —and was written in response to the following (old) supplemental Carnegie Mellon essay prompt:
And now here's the essay:
When I was younger, I faced a lot of negative emotions including anxiety and low self-esteem. For a long time, I felt alone and as if no one understood how I felt. My self confidence was at an all-time low when I started taking psychology. All of a sudden the negative emotions I was feeling started making sense. I was suddenly able to understand how people were wired and why others treated me a certain way. I in fact was able to feel empathy for my aggressors after understanding that those who treated me negatively often faced struggles of their own.
Most importantly, I felt as though something out there finally understood me. Because psychology offered insight into my own behavior and helped me to understand others, I was eventually able to overcome my insecurities. In the future, I would like to help others do the same. No matter where I end up, understanding why people behave a certain way and being more considerate and empathetic for others will only help me thrive. Mental health is a growing issue in our society. The world we live in is a confusing place filled with pain, but psychology provides a way to determine the cause of this suffering and how to change it. I never want anyone to feel the isolation and sorrow I felt when I was younger.
I want to help others become compassionate and unconditionally loving not just toward others, but to themselves. Even if I only make a small change in the world and affect just one person’s life, I would like to pursue that.
Here's why this Carnegie Mellon essay works so well:
- It has an honest, compelling narrative that flows well. This applicant begins by explaining how their feelings and experiences allowed them to form a connection to the field of psychology from a young age. This story is raw and honest, and it highlights the applicant's reasons for wanting to pursue psychology in an appropriate and relevant manner.
- It's extremely specific. The applicant uses concrete details to explain their background and why the psychology major is a perfect fit for their goals and interests. In addition, the essay connects the applicant’s present interest in psychology to how they hope to help others in the future, giving us a clear indication of why the applicant is so interested in psychology.
Carnegie Mellon Essay Example 2
This second Carnegie Mellon essay example also comes from the website Essays That Worked and, like the essay above, responds to a current Carnegie Mellon essay prompt .
It was written in response to Carnegie Mellon essay prompt number three:
Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration? Highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. Tell us, don’t show us (no websites please). (300 words max)
Here is the essay:
I recall entering the intimidating world of high school as an exorbitantly introverted, stereotypical Asian girl. My father urged me to assert myself and attempt new activities I wouldn’t have typically participated in. I didn’t want to be disappointed in twenty years by the things I didn’t attempt in high school, so I decided to pursue my long-time dream of becoming a cheerleader. I had always admired the optimism that cheerleaders had, and I was at a point in my life where I needed more positivity.
I faced obstacles trying to join the team. An Asian cheerleader? But Asians were supposed to be smart and cheerleaders were dumb! I broke racial stereotypes by becoming the first Asian cheerleader in my high school. When I made the squad, I was exposed to individuals which whom I did not ordinarily traverse paths. I stepped outside of my bubble and met girls who were extremely extroverted and seemed to be in a constant state of elation. They taught me how to spread positivity throughout my daily interactions and taught me to use optimism as a strength in facing the hurdles of life. These were qualities I would have never learned from a textbook.
My parents had possessed strong reservations about me joining and feared I would meet girls who weren’t motivated in academics. This was false. Many of the girls were brilliant and creative in ways my regular friend group wasn’t. All avenues of life met there on that team.
Cheerleading was the rain and sun that helped a small seed like me bloom into a flower. It delights me knowing that I gained social skills and made friends I never thought I could gain. Cheerleading has changed my perspective on life and joining that family is one of my greatest treasures.
- It's tightly focused. This essay centers on a struggle the applicant overcame, a topic that is made clear quickly and acts as the focal point throughout the essay. We learn that the applicant made a decision in high school--to become a cheerleader--that defied racial stereotypes and helped her grow as a person. The role that cheerleading played in the applicant’s personal growth remains the focus through the end of the essay.
- It goes into significant detail about a specific incident. In order to showcase the uniqueness of their experience and the impact it had on their identity, this applicant wrote a detailed description of what being a cheerleader was really like, beyond the stereotypes, and what they learned from that experience. This provides information about who the applicant is that can’t be conveyed through the other parts of their application.
4 Tips for a Great Carnegie Mellon Essay
As you now know, you'll need to write three essays for the Carnegie Mellon supplement. Here are some general tips to keep in mind as you begin to work on each Carnegie Mellon essay.
#1: Use Highly Specific Details
Don't rely on catch-all phrases to get your points across in your essays. Instead, try to think of real, concrete examples you can use.
Specific details will make each Carnegie Mellon essay you write (and your application as a whole!) stand apart from others; it also proves to the admissions committee that you know what kinds of opportunities are available to you at Carnegie Mellon.
#2: Avoid Exaggeration—Be Yourself!
Many students think they need to write about topics that sound "impressive," but this isn't actually what admissions committees want. What they really want is to learn more about who you are, what you sound like naturally (on paper, of course), and what you value in life.
This is why it's so important for you to clearly channel your voice in your writing. For example, it's OK to tell a joke or focus on a lighthearted topic if you would describe yourself as a comedian.
Just make sure that, no matter what kind of topic you choose or how you write, you're ultimately making a bigger, important point about yourself —one that ideally emphasizes essential facets of your personality, your experiences, and/or your ambitions.
#3: Don't Repeat Anything You've Written for Your Common App Essay
Carnegie Mellon requires all applicants to submit the Common App essay in addition to the three essays described above, so you'll want to ensure there's not too much overlap between them. While it's OK to elaborate on a specific topic or point that you briefly mentioned in another essay, don't end up writing about the same experience more than once.
The point of these essays is to showcase various aspects of your personality and life, and you won't succeed if all you're doing is repeating yourself in each Carnegie Mellon essay!
#4: Edit, Polish, and Proofread
Our final tip is to take a lot of time to edit, polish, and proofread each Carnegie Mellon essay you write. Look over each essay multiple times to catch typos and other technical errors, such as grammatical problems, and spelling mistakes.
You should also be on the lookout for the following problems:
- Any inconsistencies in style, tone, voice, tense, etc.
- Any areas that are unclear, vague, or awkwardly worded or placed
- Any irrelevant details or descriptions that don't add anything important
Once you've edited and changed your essays a few times, give them to someone you trust, such as a teacher, mentor, or parent, and have that person offer feedback on how you could improve your writing.
Here are some key questions to ask this person to think about as they edit your essay:
- Is the topic/theme effective and appropriate for a college essay?
- Does the essay sound as though you wrote it (and not someone else)? Does the voice sound like your authentic voice?
- Does the overall organization make sense? Is there a story, and does it flow well? Does the structure successfully get the main point across?
- Are the details specific and relevant?
With all these tips in mind, you should definitely be able to write a great Carnegie Mellon essay!
You'll need to use the Common App if you're applying to Carnegie Mellon. Get tips on how to write a great Common App essay with our expert guide.
Thinking of applying to other great schools like Princeton , Brown , or Columbia ? Then be sure to check out our guides to learn how you can write amazing essays for these schools' supplements.
Learn more about Carnegie Mellon's admission requirements by visiting its school page in our extensive database.
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Hannah received her MA in Japanese Studies from the University of Michigan and holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Southern California. From 2013 to 2015, she taught English in Japan via the JET Program. She is passionate about education, writing, and travel.
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Unit 4: lesson 3.
- Writing a strong college admissions essay
- Avoiding common admissions essay mistakes
- Brainstorming tips for your college essay
- 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
Pose a question the reader wants answered, don't focus exclusively on the past, experiment with the unexpected, don't summarize, want to join the conversation.
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What is a Successful College Education? (continued)
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The third element of a successful education is often overlooked, and that is rich and positive personal experiences. These are experiences that we value as humans not because they have some instrumental purpose, that we can employ to our benefit later in life, but things that are good in themselves in the moment. College is a huge percentage of your kid’s life. They are going to spend four, maybe five, years here. That’s at least five percent of their entire life, if they are fortunate enough to live to age eighty. It is even more, when viewed from the students’ perspective. College will be a third of their conscious life to date! For this reason, it is important that their days be filled with rich experiences that are valuable in themselves.
What kind of things really matter? You can make your own list. Learning to have a healthy relationship with yourself and with other people. Making friends. Falling in love. Getting your heart broken. Learning how to get in and out of a relationship responsibly and ethically. Playing a sport. Trying something athletic or artistic you’ve never tried. If you’ve never skied, try skiing. If you’ve never rock climbed, go rock climbing. If you’ve never gone hiking before, go hiking. Travel overseas. Act in a play. Paint a landscape. Play the mandolin. Operate a nuclear reactor. Do things that are fun, that are rewarding, that offer pleasure and satisfy curiosity.
I hope all of your students have one positive experience that is unique to college—the chance to fall in love with an intellectual discipline. I would encourage students and their parents not to think about this decision instrumentally. Students should not major in a field because they imagine it will be useful. They should major in a subject they love. This is in part because you’re more likely to work hard at something you enjoy. But I also believe that in life, people who have the courage to do what they love ultimately have the most success. That’s why I think it’s so important to get students into the habit of taking a risk and doing what they love, not what they think is safe.
Fourth, college students have to learn to define themselves in the world. As you know, teenagers are highly impressionable. They arrive at college with an amorphous and plastic sense of self that has been shaped heavily to date by their families, their high schools, their peers, the media, and the internet.
It is critical, during the years from 18 to 22, that students begin to evolve into adults with their own sets of values, beliefs, and style—ones that they have chosen for themselves, not ones that have been inherited or received from others. They need to take time when they’re in college to think about what’s truly important to them. Do they believe in God? What kind of God? If they don’t believe in God, what provides the foundation of their values? What are the values that they want to pursue and espouse for the rest of their lives? What aesthetic and personal style do they want to present to the outside world? If they fail to ask and answer these questions, as least provisionally, they will be societally programmed robots, not human beings.
This self-definition—the moment a young person says, “I’m going to be a human being who cares about this set of things, and who chooses to live in this manner,” is important and powerful. There is not, however, much social discourse about it. That is one of the things that makes a liberal arts education so important. The texts that students read in Hum 110 require them to think critically about the values of classical society and, more importantly, about how their own personal values relate to those of others. The class requires them to engage intellectually over fundamental questions of aesthetic, ethical, and political values with peers who come from radically different backgrounds. That ability to listen to other people, to think about what they believe, to compare that to their own values, and then potentially to modify their own beliefs because of these interactions with others, is something only a great college education can instill. And if that education is successful, your students will emerge with a set of values and a sense of self that is uniquely and truly theirs.
Preparing for the Future
Finally, a successful college education should help students build for the future. A place like Reed should be like a trampoline. You jump on it, and there’s a little bit of resistance, and it’s difficult. After four years, however, it should blow you out into orbit with a sense of power to live a life of meaning and purpose.
There’s a lot of talk in America about how college should prepare you for your first job. This seems incredibly short-sighted to me. College should not prepare you for your first job, but for the rest of your life.
I would prefer us to take one step back and to ask students to do more than just find a job. I want them to identify, while they are in college, the kind of life of meaning and purpose that they would like to pursue. This requires more than seeking employment. It forces them to identify a long-term professional trajectory that will offer them the kinds of rewards and experiences they desire. We are going to spend a lot of our lives working. So, students should ask themselves: What kind of work will sustain me? What kind of rewards do I want? What kind of financial, personal, and societal goals will give my life value?
Thinking creatively about the future is not enough. Students need to take some proactive steps to prepare for life after Reed as well. Let me suggest that students should leave Reed with four interesting things on their résumé that they can talk about when applying for work. These might include a compelling summer job or internship, a particular academic distinction, or a valuable skill like the ability to write code or speak a foreign language. You want to leave Reed with four things that you can talk about. As long as you pile up one of those things a year, you’re doing fine.
So that concludes my sermon. I have given this topic a great deal of thought, but I don’t want to suggest that this is the only way to define success. You may have other goals in mind for your student—and they may have goals that are radically different from yours. I am certain, however, that the students who take the time to identify goals are the ones who get the most out of their education—and, like Aristotle’s archers, the ones most likely to hit their targets.
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4 Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Essay Examples (2023)
If you want to get into Carnegie Mellon in 2023, you'll need to write responses to CMU's writing supplement that help you stand out and get accepted.
In this article, I've gathered 4 of the best CMU essays that worked to hopefully get you inspired to write your own stand-out essays.
I've also included this year's supplemental prompts for CMU and some ideas for getting started.
Let's get started.
What is Carnegie Mellon's Acceptance Rate?
Getting into Carnegie Mellon is more difficult every year. Last year, 42,015 students applied to CMU and only 7,143 students were admitted.
Which means Carnegie Mellon University an overall acceptance rate of 17% , or in other words less than every 1 in 5 students get admitted each year.
And admissions into certain programs like Computer Science or the School of Drama is even more competitive, with acceptances rates of 7% and 4% each.
Carnegie Mellon Acceptance Scattergram
That's a comparable admit rate to the most selective Ivy League schools like Princeton University for example.
To have your best chances of getting into CMU, you'll need to write great essay responses. Below are 4 of the best examples of CMU essays to help improve your essays and get accepted.
What are the Carnegie Mellon Supplemental Prompts for 2022-23?
This year Carnegie Mellon requires students to write three short essays of 300 words each.
Here are the Carnegie Mellon University writing supplement prompts for 2022. The questions on this page are being asked by Carnegie Mellon University:
Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that’s developed over time – what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study? (300 word maximum)
Many students pursue college for a specific degree, career opportunity or personal goal. Whichever it may be, learning will be critical to achieve your ultimate goal. As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience? (300 word maximum)
Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration? Highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. Tell us, don’t show us (no websites please). (300 word maximum)
Carnegie Mellon has used these prompts in past years.
And below you'll find several examples of essays that responded to these prompts. I've also included some personal statement essays from admitted CMU students.
4 Carnegie Mellon University Essays That Worked
It's safe to say students who get into Carnegie Mellon write interesting and creative application essays. Or at least these ones did.
Here are 4 of the best Carnegie Mellon essays that have helped students get admitted.
Carnegie Mellon Essay Example #1
Carnegie mellon essay example #2, carnegie mellon essay example #3, carnegie mellon essay example #4.
Prompt: Most students choose their intended major or area of study based on a passion or inspiration that’s developed over time – what passion or inspiration led you to choose this area of study? (300 words max)
When I was younger, I faced a lot of negative emotions including anxiety and low self-esteem. For a long time, I felt alone and as if no one understood how I felt. My self confidence was at an all-time low when I started taking psychology. All of a sudden the negative emotions I was feeling started making sense. I was suddenly able to understand how people were wired and why others treated me a certain way. I in fact was able to feel empathy for my aggressors after understanding that those who treated me negatively often faced struggles of their own. Most importantly, I felt as though something out there finally understood me. Because psychology offered insight into my own behavior and helped me to understand others, I was eventually able to overcome my insecurities.
In the future, I would like to help others do the same. No matter where I end up, understanding why people behave a certain way and being more considerate and empathetic for others will only help me thrive. Mental health is a growing issue in our society. The world we live in is a confusing place filled with pain, but psychology provides a way to determine the cause of this suffering and how to change it. I never want anyone to feel the isolation and sorrow I felt when I was younger. I want to help others become compassionate and unconditionally loving not just toward others, but to themselves. Even if I only make a small change in the world and affect just one person’s life, I would like to pursue that.
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Prompt: Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee’s consideration? Highlight something that’s important to you or something you haven’t had a chance to share. Tell us, don’t show us (no websites please). (300 words max)
I recall entering the intimidating world of high school as an exorbitantly introverted, stereotypical Asian girl. My father urged me to assert myself and attempt new activities I wouldn’t have typically participated in. I didn’t want to be disappointed in twenty years by the things I didn’t attempt in high school, so I decided to pursue my long-time dream of becoming a cheerleader. I had always admired the optimism that cheerleaders had, and I was at a point in my life where I needed more positivity.
I faced obstacles trying to join the team. An Asian cheerleader? But Asians were supposed to be smart and cheerleaders were dumb! I broke racial stereotypes by becoming the first Asian cheerleader in my high school.
When I made the squad, I was exposed to individuals which whom I did not ordinarily traverse paths. I stepped outside of my bubble and met girls who were extremely extroverted and seemed to be in a constant state of elation. They taught me how to spread positivity throughout my daily interactions and taught me to use optimism as a strength in facing the hurdles of life. These were qualities I would have never learned from a textbook.
My parents had possessed strong reservations about me joining and feared I would meet girls who weren’t motivated in academics. This was false. Many of the girls were brilliant and creative in ways my regular friend group wasn’t. All avenues of life met there on that team.
Cheerleading was the rain and sun that helped a small seed like me bloom into a flower. It delights me knowing that I gained social skills and made friends I never thought I could gain. Cheerleading has changed my perspective on life and joining that family is one of my greatest treasures.
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Prompt: “When we‘re connected to others, we become better people,” said Carnegie Mellon University‘s Randy Pausch, author of The Last Lecture .
At Carnegie Mellon you‘ll have the opportunity to collaborate with a diverse community of scholars, artists and innovators. Given the students, faculty, staff and resources that have been available to you as a student, how have you collaborated with others, in or out of the classroom?
Or, what lessons have you learned from working with others in the past, that might shape your experience in the future? (300 words max)
Because it took some time for me to pass my driving test, I was unable to get a traditional job at the same age as the rest of my peers. I had another friend who was also unable to drive. To fund our shopping addictions, we started our own business, "Velour Slimes," where we sold slimes of a diverse number of scents and textures. The experience gave us a taste of entrepreneurship and the elements of what it takes to run a successful business. One of those elements was collaboration.
Going into business with a friend can get ugly, even with a small scale operation like ours. One of our most grueling conflicts was deciding whether to spend our first profit paying off our debts or buying new materials to make more slime with. Neither of us were transparent with our goals, or on the same page. We let our conflict escalate to the point where we could not look at each other. Eventually we solved our issue by effectively communicating together. By being honest with each other about our ideas and concisely supporting our arguments with evidence, we were able to understand each other and find a balance. In the end, we compromised. We spent half of the money paying off our debts and the other half on more materials to create even more slimes.
This experience brought me closer to my friend. We were able to strengthen our relationship while becoming more understanding and considerate of each others’ feelings. I discovered empathy is deeply necessary in improving the negative aspects of modern day society. If we were all a bit more empathetic, the world would be a more pleasant place. For that reason, I try to continuously improve my own compassion.
Prompt: Why Carnegie Mellon? (650 words max)
As a child who hid behind her parents and never uttered a word whenever strangers were near, I was no stranger to people deeming me shy. As I got older, however, I found my voice more comfortably through music, through art, and through writing .
Playing Mozart’s Violin Concerto in the Kennedy Center , for instance, unleashed a swell of emotions through the intricate art of storytelling with my violin. I was drawn to writing stories and sharing ideas with my peers, starting my editor career in fifth grade. Five years later, I co-founded my high school’s literary magazine, Muses, which provides a platform for all voices while fostering connections among students.
I was twelve years old when a HTML class through John Hopkins University’s Center for Talented Youth program introduced me to a modern language of communication: computers and the Internet. Falling in love with coding and website design, I utilized my newfound knowledge to design a website for my National History Day project, which won the school competition. In high school, I joined programming club, took the rigorous computer science classes, and designed Muses’ website. This year, I created a conceptual online boutique store, which won first place in Maryland Future Business Leader Association’s E-business competitive event.
In the summer of [Date] , I interned in a NCI melanoma research lab. This experience completed changed how I viewed the importance of technology to modern communication. We had obtained genotypes from thousands of melanoma patients and controls, but a new question arose: how could we extract the useful information from a massive data file , akin to finding a needle in a haystack ? Under the guidance of a bioinformatician, I performed an association test between melanoma associated variants and survival outcome to identify the risk loci that might affect patient survival.
Catering to the needs of the scientists, I wrote an app by R code that organizes and manages melanoma genotype information; extracting the information of a particular genotype and its association with melanoma was now a couple clicks away . From this work, I learned how to translate large data into solutions, while using the correct data format and data structure. I realized that modern technology not only helps us communicate more efficiently, but also provides a system upon which we can solve global problems.
With a strong background in computer science and communications, I hope to incorporate both into a future career of building data systems, conducting research, and consulting for organizations that serve underrepresented citizens.
One project I want to tackle is the modification of social media algorithms so that media created by minorities and/or for minorities will appear on users’ radars. The algorithm would analyze the user’s demographics and deliver news relevant to those traits, such as discoveries about Asian health issues showing up on Asian users’ feeds. Carnegie Mellon’s encouragement of interdisciplinary studies under the Information Systems major would allow me to accomplish this and so much more. As someone who attacks calculus and creative writing with equal enthusiasm , IS’ objective of providing students with a broad background in the humanities and sciences is very appealing. As someone who learned to work as a team in a research lab, CMU’s emphasis on collaboration and student innovation would push me to further improve my teamwork and problem-solving skills.
In particular, I hope to take advantage of CMU’s Technology Consulting in the Global Community program , receiving guidance from both CMU’s renowned faculty and international technology experts. To that end, the Social and Decision Sciences major, my second choice, would also prepare me to utilize similar decision-making and analysis skills to solve social problems.
We live in a world where communication through technology connects communities across the globe, more so than ever before. The future of exploration and innovation requires us to develop efficient ways of communication - we need a combination of scientific expertise and knowledge grounded in the humanities to accurately convey ideas, solve problems and make the planet a better home for us all. An education at Carnegie Mellon would propel me in this endeavor.
Why This Essay Works:
- Specific Details Showing Knowledge Specific details and anecdotes will almost always be more compelling than less specific ones. In this essay, the student does a great job of including specific, "nerdy" details, such as "an association test between melanoma associated variants and survival outcome." These details demonstrate your in-depth knowledge of an area and make your essay more engaging.
- Addresses Bigger Picture This essay does a fantastic job of addressing real-world problems and emphasizing the "bigger picture" impact of their studies. Rather than just explaining what they want to study, this student explains how their education will help them have an impact on the world. Make an argument for what problems you see in the world and how you could potentially help solve them.
- References School-Specific Offerings For "Why Us?" college essays, one of the most important parts is to reference unique aspects to the school. Almost all colleges have strong academics, great faculty, etc. So instead of referencing those points, reference what makes the school unique and different. In this essay, the student talks about "CMU's Technology Consulting in the Global Community" program, which is both highly specific to CMU and relevant to their own interests.
What Could Be Improved:
- Don't Just List Accomplishments In general, you should avoid simply listing your achievements. This student has many remarkable activities and experiences, but it comes across less interesting because the first half of the essay is simply describing these accomplishments.
- Talk About Campus Culture or Mission For "Why Us?" essays, it is also a good idea to reference the values the school represents. Each school has a different "culture" and type of student body, and admissions wants to know how you will fit in.
If you're trying to get into Carnegie Mellon, here are 4 of the best essays that worked. Read example answers to Carnegie Mellon's writing supplement for 2022 and see how other students got into CMU.
What did you think of these Carnegie Mellon essays?
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Reflective Essay On College Experience
Show More Many people come into college feeling unprepared, nervous, and unconfident, and while being convinced that I was indeed prepared, I couldn’t help but feel some of these stressful emotions. Over the past month and a half, I have adapted to my new environment that is Pacific Lutheran University (PLU), and feel much more sure of myself as I continue through this semester. I have learned about what skills and mindsets can lead to a successful college experience, such as hope, grit, and resilience. I have also been able to reflect on myself as a person, and identify strengths, values, and abilities I possess that I can use to my advantage. Finally, I have learned about different resources I have surrounding me, and different aspects of PLU that …show more content… Overall, I feel more prepared and eager to face new rewarding challenges that lay in store over the next four years. Some of the first things I learned about at PLU were hope, grit, and resilience, thanks to the first assigned video in the Education 287 class. Not only will these values help me in the future, but they have helped me through my transition to being successful so far this semester. Coming into PLU, I believe I already had a high amount of hope. However, I’ve learned to better use my hope and to strengthen it even more. For example, one trick I learned to help strengthen it is to imagine the specific results of completing a goal, such as imagining the people who are going to be at my graduation. Before, when making goals, I just thought about the vague idea of completing the goal being rewarding, versus being specific and creating more motivation and hope …show more content… For example, after taking the Strengthsquest, I found that I am good at communication and activation. Both of these I had a feeling that I was good at before, but I definitely did not have conscious knowledge of it. After I took the quiz, I realized myself using those strengths more and more. I feel that these will come in especially handy when doing group projects, because I possess those strengths, they will come in handy when working on group projects, and giving speeches especially. I can get groups started, plan meeting times, and other sorts of things that are oftentimes are slow to start. I can also help communicate ideas once projects are started, allowing me to better contribute and learn over the next four years. Being aware of these strengths has even gotten me to think about switching around my majors to be able to minor in communication, which I feel I would be good at. I have also been able to identify some of my core values while at PLU as well, such as optimism and creativity. Optimism I believe easily ties into hope, in that being optimistic that something will work can lead to strong hope that it will work. Being able to see the glass half full will help me because even if I reach challenges that I fail to meet, my optimism will help me think that there is still a high possibility of things going well, which once again
Reflective essay: progressing from high school to college.
I believed in high school that I was a self-disciplined and hardworking person, but college has taken these attributes within myself and made them a challenge to obtain. I have gotten to participate in several new experiences and, now, reflect on what they have done for me. College has changed me into a more diverse and seasoned person who is better prepared for the future than two months…
The Benefits Of Community Engineering
Throughout this semester and the next four years I want to maintain the relationships I have formed this year and try to make as many possible with classes to follow. I have experienced how beneficial it is to have relationships with peers in the same field, and as classes progressively increase in difficulty it will be beneficial to have people surrounding me willing to help. Next semester I also plan to try to become involved in more co-curricular activities in the engineering department. It will help me establish relationships with my fellow engineers and also help my personal development in this…
Personal Narrative: Succeeding In College
This class has been so incredibly helpful to me even though it doesn’t show. Through all of our speakers Kenton’s stress talk greatly helped me. I do not handle stress or stressful situations very well and I feel he has helped me deal with stress better than what I was. My teachers being hard on me and stern about things was really what was needed. I feel I have learned more about myself through the many surveys and assessments we took online.…
Community College Reflection
It shows that not only ICC strengthen my thoughts, but my overall my set in the transfer process. Being in ICC help me gain new insight in how I see my study habits, organizing skills, transfer process, and my prospective in how I should be going about the rest of my college experience. ICC assistant me in becoming a better version of myself, not only in education wise, but people wise. It showed me that connecting to a larger community of people can aid when you need it and that is how I gain new skills from ICC. Learning the process of transferring to another school and growing at ICC would not happen without…
Write An Essay About How To Be Successful In High School
My most recent educational experience was my senior year of high school and I was successful and challenged in many different aspects. High school was four short years of habit making. Coming in as a freshman was tough, but you quickly learn ways to be successful that you can carry with you throughout your career. One of the first habits I developed was time management. This is essential to attain good…
Personal Narrative: The Come Up
All my obstacles made me who I am today and helped improve as an individual. I use some of my skills to make ones like me or in worse conditions feel like there is hope. While being away from loved ones was tough and things were going on that I couldn’t be there for was not easy. I pushed through them and can motivate some to do the same. Leaving off and not having anyone there in touchable reach was another fieldstone that didn’t help the thoughts.…
Personal Narrative: Improving Group Work Skills And Critical Thinking Skills
During the last couple of months, I have extensively strengthened my group working skill and critical thinking skills by learning to be patient, accepting of diversity, and open-minded towards different lifestyles. What helped me become a better learner and person was understanding and accepting that the people that I was going to interact had different views of the world around them; that I needed to discover who I was and reevaluate my fixed mindset; and that working with other people was only going to benefit me. Throughout my first semester as a college student, I made a list of things that I would like to achieve before the year ended. One of my main goals was to become a patient and accepting team member in any group that my professors…
Reflective Essay: Intentional Learning For College Success
In order to learn you have to be intentional. Prior to this course I thought learning was simply gaining knowledge, however it’s much more than that. I’ve learned that learning requires you to read, write and think critically. I’ve also learned that we all have learning patterns, and by utilizing these learning patterns we can be successful learners. I now have a better understanding of why I wasn’t a successful…
Success Margaret Mead Analysis
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Reflective Essay: How To Be Successful In College
Also, all this alone time gives me time to reflect on my past academic journey as a student. Although a lot of things went well because I ended up getting accepted into UCF, I did experience some challenges. Reflecting on my past as a student really helps me know what I need to work harder on in order to be successful in college. To begin, from when I was very young to now I have been a pretty good student. In elementary school throughout the beginning of high school, I was making honor roll or principals list with my good grades.…
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12 Strategies to Writing the Perfect College Essay
College admission committees sift through thousands of college essays each year. Here’s how to make yours stand out.
When it comes to deciding who they will admit into their programs, colleges consider many criteria, including high school grades, extracurricular activities, and ACT and SAT scores. But in recent years, more colleges are no longer considering test scores.
Instead, many (including Harvard through 2026) are opting for “test-blind” admission policies that give more weight to other elements in a college application. This policy change is seen as fairer to students who don’t have the means or access to testing, or who suffer from test anxiety.
So, what does this mean for you?
Simply that your college essay, traditionally a requirement of any college application, is more important than ever.
A college essay is your unique opportunity to introduce yourself to admissions committees who must comb through thousands of applications each year. It is your chance to stand out as someone worthy of a seat in that classroom.
A well-written and thoughtful essay—reflecting who you are and what you believe—can go a long way to separating your application from the slew of forgettable ones that admissions officers read. Indeed, officers may rely on them even more now that many colleges are not considering test scores.
Below we’ll discuss a few strategies you can use to help your essay stand out from the pack. We’ll touch on how to start your essay, what you should write for your college essay, and elements that make for a great college essay.
More than any other consideration, you should choose a topic or point of view that is consistent with who you truly are.
Readers can sense when writers are inauthentic.
Inauthenticity could mean the use of overly flowery language that no one would ever use in conversation, or it could mean choosing an inconsequential topic that reveals very little about who you are.
Use your own voice, sense of humor, and a natural way of speaking.
Whatever subject you choose, make sure it’s something that’s genuinely important to you and not a subject you’ve chosen just to impress. You can write about a specific experience, hobby, or personality quirk that illustrates your strengths, but also feel free to write about your weaknesses.
Honesty about traits, situations, or a childhood background that you are working to improve may resonate with the reader more strongly than a glib victory speech.
Grab the Reader From the Start
You’ll be competing with so many other applicants for an admission officer’s attention.
Therefore, start your essay with an opening sentence or paragraph that immediately seizes the imagination. This might be a bold statement, a thoughtful quote, a question you pose, or a descriptive scene.
Starting your essay in a powerful way with a clear thesis statement can often help you along in the writing process. If your task is to tell a good story, a bold beginning can be a natural prelude to getting there, serving as a roadmap, engaging the reader from the start, and presenting the purpose of your writing.
Focus on Deeper Themes
Some essay writers think they will impress committees by loading an essay with facts, figures, and descriptions of activities, like wins in sports or descriptions of volunteer work. But that’s not the point.
College admissions officers are interested in learning more about who you are as a person and what makes you tick.
They want to know what has brought you to this stage in life. They want to read about realizations you may have come to through adversity as well as your successes, not just about how many games you won while on the soccer team or how many people you served at a soup kitchen.
Let the reader know how winning the soccer game helped you develop as a person, friend, family member, or leader. Make a connection with your soup kitchen volunteerism and how it may have inspired your educational journey and future aspirations. What did you discover about yourself?
Show Don’t Tell
As you expand on whatever theme you’ve decided to explore in your essay, remember to show, don’t tell.
The most engaging writing “shows” by setting scenes and providing anecdotes, rather than just providing a list of accomplishments and activities.
Reciting a list of activities is also boring. An admissions officer will want to know about the arc of your emotional journey too.
Try Doing Something Different
If you want your essay to stand out, think about approaching your subject from an entirely new perspective. While many students might choose to write about their wins, for instance, what if you wrote an essay about what you learned from all your losses?
If you are an especially talented writer, you might play with the element of surprise by crafting an essay that leaves the response to a question to the very last sentence.
You may want to stay away from well-worn themes entirely, like a sports-related obstacle or success, volunteer stories, immigration stories, moving, a summary of personal achievements or overcoming obstacles.
However, such themes are popular for a reason. They represent the totality of most people’s lives coming out of high school. Therefore, it may be less important to stay away from these topics than to take a fresh approach.
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Write With the Reader in Mind
Writing for the reader means building a clear and logical argument in which one thought flows naturally from another.
Use transitions between paragraphs.
Think about any information you may have left out that the reader may need to know. Are there ideas you have included that do not help illustrate your theme?
Be sure you can answer questions such as: Does what you have written make sense? Is the essay organized? Does the opening grab the reader? Is there a strong ending? Have you given enough background information? Is it wordy?
Write Several Drafts
Set your essay aside for a few days and come back to it after you’ve had some time to forget what you’ve written. Often, you’ll discover you have a whole new perspective that enhances your ability to make revisions.
Start writing months before your essay is due to give yourself enough time to write multiple drafts. A good time to start could be as early as the summer before your senior year when homework and extracurricular activities take up less time.
Read It Aloud
Writer’s tip : Reading your essay aloud can instantly uncover passages that sound clumsy, long-winded, or false.
If you’ve mentioned an activity, story, or anecdote in some other part of your application, don’t repeat it again in your essay.
Your essay should tell college admissions officers something new. Whatever you write in your essay should be in philosophical alignment with the rest of your application.
Also, be sure you’ve answered whatever question or prompt may have been posed to you at the outset.
Ask Others to Read Your Essay
Be sure the people you ask to read your essay represent different demographic groups—a teacher, a parent, even a younger sister or brother.
Ask each reader what they took from the essay and listen closely to what they have to say. If anyone expresses confusion, revise until the confusion is cleared up.
Pay Attention to Form
Although there are often no strict word limits for college essays, most essays are shorter rather than longer. Common App, which students can use to submit to multiple colleges, suggests that essays stay at about 650 words.
“While we won’t as a rule stop reading after 650 words, we cannot promise that an overly wordy essay will hold our attention for as long as you’d hoped it would,” the Common App website states.
In reviewing other technical aspects of your essay, be sure that the font is readable, that the margins are properly spaced, that any dialogue is set off properly, and that there is enough spacing at the top. Your essay should look clean and inviting to readers.
End Your Essay With a “Kicker”
In journalism, a kicker is the last punchy line, paragraph, or section that brings everything together.
It provides a lasting impression that leaves the reader satisfied and impressed by the points you have artfully woven throughout your piece.
So, here’s our kicker: Be concise and coherent, engage in honest self-reflection, and include vivid details and anecdotes that deftly illustrate your point.
While writing a fantastic essay may not guarantee you get selected, it can tip the balance in your favor if admissions officers are considering a candidate with a similar GPA and background.
Write, revise, revise again, and good luck!
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About the Author
Pamela Reynolds is a Boston-area feature writer and editor whose work appears in numerous publications. She is the author of “Revamp: A Memoir of Travel and Obsessive Renovation.”
How Involved Should Parents and Guardians Be in High School Student College Applications and Admissions?
There are several ways parents can lend support to their children during the college application process. Here's how to get the ball rolling.
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"Tomorrow is the first day of what I will become." I wrote this in my diary the night before my first day of college. I was anxious as I imagined the stereotypical college room: intellectual students, in-depth discussions about neat stuff, and of course, a casual professor sporting the tweed jacket with leather elbows. I was also ill as I foresaw myself drowning in a murky pool of reading assignments and finals, hearing a deep, depressing voice ask "What can you do with your life?" Since then, I've settled comfortably into the college "scene" and have treated myself to the myth that I'll hear my calling someday, and that my future will introduce itself to me with a hardy handshake. I can't completely rid my
The Realities of College Life Essay
As I graduated high school, I thought college would just be yet another four years of high school, and I was wrong. College opens many new doors in a young man or woman’s life. There are new responsibilities and pressures that you will have to deal with, and with more freedom these responsibilities and pressures can be difficult to handle. College has changed a great deal over the years and these changes, such as more freedoms, make college a much more challenging experience. You need to start preparing for college now by making yourself more responsible and having more self-control. Although you think college is merely partying with easy classes on the side, I have experienced pressures and work loads that make the experience challenging
My First Day Of College
Hearing so many good things and bad things about college I didn’t know what to expect and look forward to. That change my junior year knowing different college come every year I didn’t really pay it any mind what college I wanted to go to until ODU, Virginia State University and Virginia Teach came. It was Virginia State first year of visiting out school and I knew I wanted to go there I start getting e excited for college that were talking about their experience at college and what to look for when we graduated if we decided to go to college. Eager to start a new chapter college sound like it could be a little nerve wrecking but I thought I could handle it.
College Essay Outline
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Essay on college life.
WebAug 26, · My College Life Essay. My first semester in college has been a roller coaster ride, full of ups and downs but at the end of the day, you will be full of laughter and joy! WebCollege life is considered a bridge in our lives between our school days and our career. It prepares us with the finest academics and platform to generate dreams into realities. It WebThe world of the college is large. Teachers in a school are strict and use the rod to beat the boys very frequently. College teachers are like elder brothers. Most of the teachers in a
My College Life Essay Essay Example | GraduateWay
College Life Experience Essay. Going to college will forever change your life. Attending college will open many new doors and will help you discover who you are as a person. There are many different questions about college life. Where you will live, what type of activities will you participate in, will you make new friends, and will you adjust to having a part-time job and full-time classes? As we all know, college is a big deal, essay on college life . It's a essay on college life chapter of life. Essay on college life wonder where you will live, what can you afford?
Do you have scholarships or grants that will cover your cost of living? There are so many questions. However, there are various places you can stay depending on where your college is located. If your college is closer to home, then you can always continue living with your parents, it's free, and more than likely all your necessities are covered by your parents! However, if you have the funds needed and are wanting a more independent setting, you can get a dorm room at your college. Dorm rooms are basically like small apartments that are located on a college's campus.
You usually have to share a room with someone else, but you will experience the independence you've always dreamed about. Either way, whatever you choose will not change your overall college experience, especially if you get yourself involved in college activities. Your involvement in activities at your college is the best way to have a great college life experience. Colleges across the world have many different activities that you can participate in. Some of these activities consist of clubs, volunteer work, and even a student ran Government for your college campus. Involving yourself in these types of clubs will help your college life experience.
You will meet new people, make new friends, and have lots of fun in the process. There are times that non-profit organizations will reach out to colleges in hopes of gaining helpers for their missions. If volunteer opportunities are available, you should participate. Volunteering gives you a great experience, recognition, and makes you feel amazing afterward. However, this isn't the end of your college life experience. There are so many more things you can do! Friends, friends, and more friends. You can never have enough friends.
The more people, the better your experience will be. When you have friends, your time in college will fly by. You have people to hang out with on-campus and even outside of the college setting. Having friends is what will make your college life experience the best experience ever. Reach out and make friends! If you have the time, you should try to search for a part-time job. Part-time jobs will give you a sense of accomplishment and extra money to do the things you want to do. Want to go to the movies with friends? Want to go to a fancy restaurant a block from your college? Want to buy a new laptop for your college classes?
Anything you want to do can be done with a little money, a part-time job would help add on to your college experience. Professors aren't just teachers, they can be essay on college life much more. If you get to know your professors, you will notice that they will be your friend and even your mentor if you need one. Professors are always there for you, inside and outside of your classes, essay on college life . Talk to your professors, find out what they like and don't like, you'll find that this makes your college courses a little less stressful. Attending college is a truly amazing period in your life. It lets you discover who you are and what you want to be. There are so many experiences. You don't want essay on college life miss it!
Hello, my name is Devin. I will begin by saying that I have recently graduated from Cleveland State Community College with an Associate's Degree in Business Management. You may be asking, "What does Business Management have to do with writing? However, throughout all of my school years, I have always had a passion for writing. I have excelled in many of my writing and English courses and have even won several awards for my creative writing capabilities. You can go back and ask nearly all of my teachers and writing professors about my writing skills and abilities; they will tell you that my writing is some of the best they've seen in their teaching careers.
I have aced many of my writing assignments. Essay on college life assignments range anywhere from creative writing to extensive research essays and everything in between. I always take my time, identify the subject of my writing assignments, research potential information needed, essay on college life , and begin with a short written plan for my writing. I am very detail-oriented, and by the time I complete my writing, I have to make sure everything is perfectly organized and in top-notch shape. I will never write anything less than perfect. That being said, my passion for writing is what drives my success. Name Tutor Course Date College Life Experience Essay Going to college will forever change your life.
Request Writer Dfarmer Average rating : Not rated yet. About Dfarmer Hello, essay on college life , my name is Devin. SELL YOUR OLD PAPERS, essay on college life . Recent Posts Essay Example On My Country 0 Comments Merit and Demerits of the Categories Academic Writing 23 Admission Essay Book Summaries College Tips Content Writing Services 1 Essay Help Essay Writing Help 76 Essays Blog 0 Example Infographics 2 Outlines Photo Essay Assignment 4 Resume Writing Tips 62 Samples Essays Writing Jobs 2.
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College Life Experience Essay - iWriteEssays
WebTypes of College Life Essays Using the first person point of view is great for fun essays. For better connection with the reader, go for second person and third person points of view WebCollege is a time of exploration. Make friends from a wide variety of cultures, religions, socioeconomic backgrounds and interests. You may or may not become lifelong friends. WebThe world of the college is large. Teachers in a school are strict and use the rod to beat the boys very frequently. College teachers are like elder brothers. Most of the teachers in a
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"Why This College?" is one of the most common essay prompts, likely because schools want to understand whether you'd be a good fit and how you'd use their resources. This essay is one of the more straightforward ones you'll write for college applications, but you still can and should allow your voice to shine through.
Now, let's get to the good stuff: the list of 145 college essay examples responding to current and past Common App essay prompts. Connecticut College 12 Common Application essays from the classes of 2022-2025 Hamilton College 7 Common Application essays from the class of 2022 7 Common Application essays from the class of 2018
Tips for successful essay What should you do to make your piece of writing outstanding and remarkable? We can give several recommendations. First, don't rely on your own skills only. Second, remember about strong parts. And third, be confident in a positive result when ordering a writing help! 0 Comments
One of the best ways to write a successful college essay for your college application is by learning from real college essay examples that worked. I've compiled a few of my favorite essay examples here that cover a variety of college essay topics. Need help writing your college essay? Click here for my ultimate guide.
College essay examples from students accepted to Harvard, Stanford, and other elite schools REVIEWING SUCCESSFUL COLLEGE ESSAY EXAMPLES CAN HELP YOU UNDERSTAND HOW TO MAXIMIZE YOUR ODDS OF ACCEPTANCE Responding effectively to college essay prompts is quite different from other essay writing.
As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience? (300 words) This essay provides you with the perfect opportunity to demonstrate your passion for CMU and your understanding of its available opportunities.
7. Confidence in yourself. "Some advice I'd offer to new college students feeling nervous about their role is to simply believe in yourself," Martinez says. You don't have to be perfect to have a successful college experience. You can persevere with determination and the confidence that you have what it takes to earn your degree.
As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience? (300 words) Prompt #3 Consider your application as a whole. What do you personally want to emphasize about your application for the admission committee's consideration?
College essay: The word successful can have different meaning to others, success can be measured on monetary worth, items you acquired over the years, people you've met, people you've procreated with starting a family, those very same people are the ones you know and love.
In conclusion, becoming a successful student should be an easy and attainable undertaking. By organizing one's life and activities, attending classes, developing a relationship with professors, having a social life, exploring college resources and studying will make college experience less challenging. EssayBasics
10 Lines on College Experience Essay in English 1. Colleges are becoming expensive and cannot figure the tuition unless one considering a community college. 2. Graduation requirements are becoming tougher due to the inclusion of some major norms in school. 3. College is the place where women's populations are often the majority. 4.
August 15, 2022. College Essay. When applying to a school like Carnegie Mellon that receives 26,000+ applications each year, it's important to keep in mind that around 22,000 of this group will ultimately be denied admission. Many of these 22,000 rejected individuals will have straight A's in high school and/or SATs in the 1500s.
First Day at College experience. A College is dreamland of every student's educational life and career. It is a beautiful period and picture of learning, enjoyment, freedom and friendship. Sweet memories of college life are simply amazing. They have an everlasting impact on human memory.
Here are nine tips to help you achieve your goals: Know your goals and values. Turn long-term goals into short-term plans. Go to class and attend office hours. Build skills relevant to your coursework. Assess your learning style. Try new things. Maintain a social balance. Manage your time with intention.
Grab the reader from the start. Grab a reader's attention from the start —remember that you are competing with hundreds of other applicants. Let's start with the thesis statement: the backbone of your essay and the first sentence a reader will read. Start your essay with a clear sentence that immediately seizes the reader's imagination.
There are different approaches which may be used to make students successful in college. First is by improving the academic and college self-efficacy. This is improving the belief that students can excel academically and socially in college. Secondly, institutions should support the needs of students.
Table of contents. Essay 1: Sharing an identity or background through a montage. Essay 2: Overcoming a challenge, a sports injury narrative. Essay 3: Showing the influence of an important person or thing. Frequently asked questions about college application essays.
As you think ahead to the process of learning during your college years, how will you define a successful college experience? And now here's the essay: When I was younger, I faced a lot of negative emotions including anxiety and low self-esteem. For a long time, I felt alone and as if no one understood how I felt.
Colleges don't want to read essays that are set exclusively in the past. They want students who are actively looking at their future so make sure that if you're describing a past event, you connect it to who you are now and how it will impact you as a person moving forward. Tip #3 Open up
The third element of a successful education is often overlooked, and that is rich and positive personal experiences. These are experiences that we value as humans not because they have some instrumental purpose, that we can employ to our benefit later in life, but things that are good in themselves in the moment.
Here are 4 of the best Carnegie Mellon essays that have helped students get admitted. Prompt: Major or Area of Study Carnegie Mellon Essay Example #1 Prompt: Emphasize About Your Application Carnegie Mellon Essay Example #2 Prompt: Collaboration Carnegie Mellon Essay Example #3 Prompt: Why Carnegie Mellon? Carnegie Mellon Essay Example #4
My most recent educational experience was my senior year of high school and I was successful and challenged in many different aspects. High school was four short years of habit making. Coming in as a freshman was tough, but you quickly learn ways to be successful that you can carry with you throughout your career.
You can write about a specific experience, hobby, or personality quirk that illustrates your strengths, but also feel free to write about your weaknesses. Honesty about traits, situations, or a childhood background that you are working to improve may resonate with the reader more strongly than a glib victory speech. Grab the Reader From the Start
Essay: My Experience At Community College In the summer, I attended a guidance class at Chaffey College. I thought that community college was for people who drop out of high school and not take life seriously, but I got that idea from teachers who went straight to universities after high school.
Essay on college life. WebAug 26, · My College Life Essay. My first semester in college has been a roller coaster ride, full of ups and downs but at the end of the day, you will be full of laughter and joy! WebCollege life is considered a bridge in our lives between our school days and our career. ... College Life Experience Essay. Going to ...
College Essay Outline Structure (Writing Service Video Review), #shorts. My briefly review about my experience of using writing service. I would like to shar...
College Convocation essay in English-2nd year Essay-Essay -Convocation- English Essay-Essay writing. College convocation essay - can Each new food I discovered gave me an education on the role diet plays on health. To this day, I ponder its full importance in my life. Oftentimes, he will reveal a hidden meaning behind the lyrics.