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What Excellent College Essays Have in Common
A Strong College Application essay Will make you stand out from the crowd.

Firstly, in a practical way — his resourcefulness has resulted in him unlocking the car door. In this playful way, he is changing the situation from the narrow story to the broader deeper aspects. The insight he has gained from it.

Stephen clarifies what he means in the next sentence which limits the number of inferences the reader can make by providing a detailed and visual scene of the chaos: The humor relaxes the reader and actually draws them closer to the essay writer while providing details about the author's life.

Another thing to take notice of is that this type of humor and phrasing is kept to a minimum in the statement, and is only used around topics where the reader could feel discomfort to relax them. The moderate amount of humor helps keep the prose meaningful and serious rather than flippant. Stephen ends his essay by reflecting on how his life has prepared him to deal with the future.

Stephen connects his past experience to his current maturity through self-knowledge. All great personal essays contain this key element. Maturity and awareness of your own behavior is something that all colleges desire in their applicants.

They indicate that a student will be able to adapt to the independence that is required in college classes, will be responsible for their own lives and actions. No piece of writing is ever perfect. Most writers would be happy revising pieces of writing for the rest of their life if there was a deadline they had to meet. So, what would you have done differently with this essay? What would you change to give it that little extra piece of oomph? These block phrases work against this and dampen the author's unique voice to just one among the crowd.

This can make your writing tired and predictable if used in large amounts. The essay demonstrates how Stephen is adaptable to the situation and that he is not afraid to use his inventiveness to adapt to and thrive in difficult situations. This is a great example, and very well used. Stephen also makes several claims later in his essay that he did substantiate through examples.

Remember to make abstract claims concrete, so the reader knows exactly what you mean. After a long day in first grade, I used to fall asleep to the engine purring in my mother's Honda Odyssey, even though it was only a 5-minute drive home. As I grew, and graduated into the shotgun seat, it became natural and enjoyable to look out the window. Seeing my world passing by through that smudged glass, I would daydream what I could do with it. In elementary school, I already knew my career path: I was going to be Emperor of the World.

While I sat in the car and watched the miles pass by, I developed the plan for my empire. I reasoned that, for the world to run smoothly, it would have to look presentable. I would assign people, aptly named Fixer-Uppers, to fix everything that needed fixing. That old man down the street with chipping paint on his house would have a fresh coat in no time.

The boy who accidentally tossed his Frisbee onto the roof of the school would get it back. The big pothole on Elm Street that my mother managed to hit every single day on the way to school would be filled-in.

It made perfect sense! All the people that didn't have a job could be Fixer-Uppers. I was like a ten-year-old FDR. Seven years down the road, I still take a second glance at the sidewalk cracks and think of my Fixer-Uppers, but now I'm doing so from the driver's seat. As much as I would enjoy it, I now accept that I won't become Emperor of the World, and that the Fixer-Uppers will have to remain in my car ride imaginings.

I always pictured a Fixer-Upper as a smiling man in an orange T-Shirt. Maybe instead, a Fixer-Upper could be a tall girl with a deep love for Yankee Candles. Maybe it could be me. Bridget the Fixer-Upper will be slightly different than the imaginary one who paints houses and fetches Frisbees. I was lucky enough to discover what I am passionate about when I was a freshman in high school.

On my first day, I learned that it was for developmentally-disabled students. To be honest, I was really nervous. I hadn't had too much interaction with special needs students before, and wasn't sure how to handle myself around them. Long story short, I got hooked. Three years have passed helping out in APE and eventually becoming a teacher in the Applied Behavior Analysis summer program.

I love working with the students and watching them progress. When senior year arrived, college meetings began, and my counselor asked me what I wanted to do for a career, I didn't say Emperor of the World. Instead, I told him I wanted to become a board-certified behavior analyst. A BCBA helps develop learning plans for students with autism and other disabilities. Basically, I would get to do what I love for the rest of my life.

He laughed and told me that it was a nice change that a seventeen-year-old knew so specifically what she wanted to do. I smiled, thanked him, and left. But it occurred to me that, while my desired occupation was decided, my true goal in life was still to become a Fixer-Upper. I'll do one thing during the day, then spend my off-hours helping people where I can.

Instead of flying like Sue, though, I'll opt for a nice performance automobile. My childhood self would appreciate that.

When you compare Bridget's essay to Stephen's, the two approaches are very different. The main thing they have in common is they use lifetime event language to build an engaging and interesting narrative. And they are the two keys to any great essay. The story told in the essay unfolds in chronographic order. His stead unfolding of time is signed post at the of each paragraph:.

A short sentence is used to create the emotional resolution of the admission essay. Here Bridget goes from being nervous about helping students with disabilities to being hooked. The slang also emphasizes this area of the letter. So, by changing the sentence structure, Bridget is emphasizing her feelings and drawing attention to her personality and emotional drive.

This endows the admission essay with a fantastic and unique voice. To make the hook work better, Bridget needed to explain why cars were connected to the idea more or maybe have deleted the thing about cars and used the space from some more relevant. The crux of the essay is this experience that gave her the confidence and knowledge of what she wanted to help fix in the world.

Despite this Bridget glosses over the what it was about the experience that made her feel this way, and what the experience really entailed in the essay. What exactly was her experience here? Are you wondering how this resource and the stockpile of old letters can make your own admission essay better? Here are some ideas on how to use the information we have provided here. Here is a checklist of questions that will help you analyze and think about the other essays that we have collected.

Examine the opening sentence and explain why it works so well? How does it hook you and make you want to read on? How does the author describe the anecdote? What senses does the author use to convey the story? Do these sensual descriptions make the story visual? Where does the narrow anecdote expand into the larger perspective of the author? How does the author connect the narrow experience to the larger picture?

And what trait, characteristic or skill does the anecdote emphasis and how? What is the tone of the essay? And how does it evoke this tone? Is it funny — if so where does the humor come from? Is it sad and moving? Can you find the imagery that describes this feeling? How does the word choices add to the tone of the piece?

How would you improve the essay? Is it missing something? Is the voice unique? If they were asking you for advice, how would you advise them? These essays rely on creating an emotional connection with the reader by the author describing a scene from their life in great detail.

It doesn't matter if the scene is dramatic or from a slice of everyday life; it should be personal and revealing about you. It should make your individuality shine through, and the reader should see you through it. The best pieces of writing only emerge when something has been rewritten a few thousand times. As such it best to start writing your admission letters early.

This way you have time to pass it around, get feedback and rewrite. The best advice when editing anything is to put in a drawer for a few days and just forget about it and come back to it with fresh eyes. Is there something that is needed? Does everything make sense? Are the words strong? Is your voice there? Edit it, put away for a few days and repeat the cycle. Best College Essay Examples. A Clear Structured Plan. Start Small — Then Expand.

Story Telling These authors know how to tell a tale. Academic level Undergraduate Bachelor Professional. Choose your Deadline date 3hr 6hr 12hr 24hr 2d 3d 6d 10d 14d. How to Write a Short Essay. Why Is College So Expensive? Start a Live Chat with an Operator. How To Write An Essay. College Papers For Sale. Order Now With Discount. It's a lifetime discount time! Writers Workshop Regular Forums.

Program Links Program Reviews. Today's top voted College Essays. Three juicy quarter-pound meat patties, draped in applewood bacon and American chees Today's most discussed College Essays. Most recently submitted College Essays. If you could meet with any person, living or dead, for an hour, who would it be and what would you say to them? Choose what to email Which of your works would you like to tell your friends about? Send your email To. Add a personal note.

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Finally, I’ll break down two of these published college essay examples and explain why and how they work. Want to build the best possible college application? We can help. PrepScholar Admissions is the world's best admissions consulting service.

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Your essay can give admission officers a sense of who you are, as well as showcasing your writing skills. Try these tips to craft your college application essay. Read selected examples of essays that worked, as nominated by our admissions committee. The essays can be the most important components of your application. Read selected examples of essays that worked, as nominated by our admissions committee. I was choosing the best photos I’d taken around town during the presidential election.

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Top College Officials Share Notes on Great Application Essays Learn why application essays stood out to admissions officials from some of the top 15 U.S. News Best Colleges. Sample College Application Essays. Get accepted to your top choice university with your outstanding essay. Read The Sample Essays.