For most students, the college application essay is the most critical piece of writing they’ll ever do. Some would argue that it’s the most important part of the application, and even the best student writers find it challenging to write.
With thousands of students vying to get accepted, how can you make your essay stand out from the pack?
Derive ideas from your own experience
For their college application essays, quadruplets from Ohio’s Lakota East High School decided to write essays that banked on their unique situation, but emphasized on each one’s individuality. They focused on their own experiences as quadruplets to create winning essays that earned them a full scholarship in Harvard.
Of course, not everyone has a twin brother or a quadruplet, but each one has their own unique experiences that shaped who they are as a person.
Showcase your personality in your essay
Following all the grammar rules and reading all the writing guidelines are not enough to make sure that your essay will be noticed. Everyone can write an essay, but not all can write one that has a personality.
The trick to writing a captivating essay is making sure that your personality will shine through. Are you witty in real life? Then put it in paper. Are you eccentric? Are you the life of the party? Don’t hesitate to bring who you are into your application. How else will they distinguish your voice from the thousands of essays they will read?
Learn from the bests
Some universities provide sample essays that have paved the way for other students. Take the time to read through the dozens of samples, and you’ll have an idea what type of writing catches the eyes of the Admission committee.
Check the website of your target university if they released the previous year’s accepted essays. Take for example these ones from John Hopkins University or Tufts University. You’ll be surprised at how simple these essays are, and how unbelievably captivating.
It’s definitely not easy to write an essay that will single you out from the rest of the applicants. But with ample planning and plenty of honesty, you can write that winning composition.