Sample Application Essay

Sample Application Essay-83
Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure.How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?Your "interest" or "talent" could be a passion that has driven you to become the person you are today.

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This question was reworded in 2017-18 admissions cycle, and the current language is a huge improvement.

The prompt use to talk about transitioning from childhood to adulthood, but the new language about a "period of personal growth" is a much better articulation of how we actually learn and mature (no single event makes us adults).

At the same time, you'll impress the college admissions folks greatly if you can show your ability to learn from your failures and mistakes.

Be sure to devote significant space to the second half of the question—how did you learn and grow from the experience?

The essay prompts are designed to encourage reflection and introspection.

If your essay doesn't include some self-analysis, you haven't fully succeeded in responding to the prompt.

Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. The prompt gives you a lot of latitude for answering the question since you can write a story about your "background, identity, interest, or talent." Your "background" can be a broad environmental factor that contributed to your development such as growing up in a military family, living in an interesting place, or dealing with an unusual family situation.

If this sounds like you, then please share your story. You could write about an event or series of events that had a profound impact on your identity.

Be careful with that opening word "describe"—you'll want to spend much more time analyzing the problem than describing it.

This essay prompt, like all of the options, is asking you to be introspective and share with the admissions folks what it is that you value.

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