How to Impress the Admission Board with Your Personal Essay
One of the most stressful parts of applying to colleges is writing an application essay. Most high school juniors and seniors aren’t very confident in their writing skills, and with the way high school curriculums are set up, they also aren’t used to writing essays about themselves. So, this makes writing college application essays very challenging for students who are already nervous about getting into their dream schools. Where do you start? What do you even write about? What will a college admission board like? Here, we have some tips for writing a personal essay that will impress the admission board of whatever college you’re applying to.
Make it Interesting!
Every admissions officer has a stack of essays to read daily. You want to stand out amongst the stack, and you can do this by writing about something interesting to you, something personal, or something that you’re passionate about. If you write about what you think people working at the college will like instead of writing about what you want to, then the admissions officer will be just as bored reading your essay as you were writing it. So don’t attempt to please the college, just write about something you care about.
Be Honest and Have Heart
Honest writing, as well as writing from the heart, can produce some of the best work. If you aren’t shy and write honestly, then your personal essay will be just that- personal. Also make sure not to over embellish anything; be modest. You essay will come off as genuine and it will make an impression, which is something you definitely want.
Write a Story
Good essays are usually compared to stories. Include lots of details and use names, whether real or invented. This will make your essay more human and will make it easier for the reader to make connections to your essay.
With whatever you are talking about in your essay, you want to come off as likable. Colleges are communities and they see themselves that way. They want students who would be good representatives of their school and that can get along with others. Your writing will be telling the admissions officer about you through themes and details in your essay. To make sure you’re coming off as likeable:
- Reread your essay a few days after writing it with fresh eyes. Do you see any themes popping up in your writing? What do you feel the essay is saying about you?
- Ask a friend or family member to read your essay. They already have a good idea of who you are. What does your essay tell them about you? What does it make them think of you? Is it accurately portraying you?
- Ask a teacher, someone in the writing center, or a counselor to read your essay. They are less familiar with you than friends or family. How do you come off in your essay to them?
As long as you write about something you care about and you write it with honesty, you’ll have a great essay.