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The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve.Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma—anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale.I've also compiled an enormous list of 100 actual sample college essays from 14 different schools.
With links to 120 full essays and essay excerpts, this article will be a great resource for learning how to craft your own personal college admissions essay!
Even though in many ways these sample college essays are very different from one other, they share some traits you should try to emulate as you write your own essay. You'll see a similar structure in many of the essays.
How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.5.
Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.6. It can be one you've already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design.
My Dad considered this a critical life skill—you know, in case my aircraft carrier should ever get torpedoed. While I'm still unconvinced about that particular lesson's practicality, my Dad's overarching message is unequivocally true: much of life is unexpected, and you have to deal with the twists and turns.
Living in my family, days rarely unfolded as planned.The author starts with a very detailed story of an event or description of a person or place. Use interesting descriptions, stay away from clichés, include your own offbeat observations—anything that makes this essay sounds like you and not like anyone else. No spelling mistakes, no grammar weirdness, no syntax issues, no punctuation snafus—each of these sample college essays has been formatted and proofread perfectly.After this sense-heavy imagery, the essay expands out to make a broader point about the author, and connects this very memorable experience to the author's present situation, state of mind, newfound understanding, or maturity level. Some of the experiences in these essays are one-of-a-kind. What sets them apart is the way the author approaches the topic: analyzing it for drama and humor, for its moving qualities, for what it says about the author's world, and for how it connects to the author's emotional life. You've heard it before, and you'll hear it again: you have to suck the reader in, and the best place to do that is the first sentence. They are like cliffhangers, setting up an exciting scene or an unusual situation with an unclear conclusion, in order to make the reader want to know more. In this case, your reader is an admissions officer who has read thousands of essays before yours and will read thousands after. If this kind of exactness is not your strong suit, you're in luck!The Hotchkiss volunteers had already left, off to enjoy some Texas BBQ, leaving me behind with the college kids to clean up.Not until we were stranded did we realize we were locked out of the van.The personal statement might just be the hardest part of your college application.Mostly this is because it has the least guidance and is the most open-ended.Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more? Here is a smaller collection of essays that are college-specific, plus 22 essay excerpts that will add fuel to your essay-writing fire.Each year, Smith asks its applicants to answer a different prompt with a 200-word essay.At the end, you'll have a unique essay that you'll proudly submit to your top choice colleges. Find out more about Prep Scholar Admissions now: Some colleges publish a selection of their favorite accepted college essays that worked, and I've put together a selection of over 100 of these (plus some essay excerpts! Please note that some of these college essay examples may be responding to prompts that are no longer in use. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it.If this sounds like you, then please share your story.2.