How to Write an Essay that Ivy League Colleges Will Love

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Imagine the admissions officer who has never met you.  If she read the rest of the application, without the essay, who would she think you are?  Is her/his image accurate?  If not, what’s misleading?  Maybe you are not coming across as insightful or reflective?  Maybe you have overcome a tremendous obstacle or changed your beliefs or the way you approach a situation? Maybe you haven’t clearly articulated the impact you want to have on the world?  Maybe you are ticking off all of the qualities you want to demonstrate but you are coming across as overly serious or stuffy?  If that’s the case, use your essays to inject some humor or show a quirky side of your personality.

The essay is where you should communicate the “intangibles” that do not come through in other parts of your application.  Once you determine what else you want to say about yourself, now go and take a look at the essay questions and see which one best allows you to fill in that puzzle piece.

The best piece of advice I can give you is to write the essay that only you can write.  One of the worst mistakes an applicant can make in writing their essay is to sound like every other applicant.  Remember, admissions officers are reading upwards of 30 applications a day.  For some schools, that might mean close to 100 essays per day.  You want to make sure that your essay is remembered when that admissions officer goes to bed – and wakes up the next day and the best way to do that is to write something only you can write.

To learn where most students go wrong in the personal statement, read examples of essays from successful applicants and to get step-by-step instructions on how to develop and execute a strategy that will help you earn admissions to your top choice colleges, get The Complete Candidate: A Comprehensive System for Solving the College Admissions Puzzle, available on Amazon.

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