Essay 2 If you select a second-choice major other than the Division of General Studies on your application, write a second essay explaining your interest in this major, too. Be prepared. Be yourself. Be focused. Be current. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome? Keep in mind how open-ended this prompt truly is. The "belief or idea" you explore could be your own, someone else's, or that of a group. The best essays will be honest as they explore the difficulty of working against the status quo or a firmly held belief.
The answer to the final question about the "outcome" of your challenge need not be a success story. Sometimes in retrospection, we discover that the cost of an action was perhaps too great. However you approach this prompt, your essay needs to reveal one of your core personal values. If the belief you challenged doesn't give the admissions folks a window into your personality, then you haven't succeeded with this prompt. Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve.
It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma--anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution. With the ability to write about an "intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma," you can essentially write about any issue that you find important. Note that you do not have to have solved the problem, and some of the best essays will explore problems that need to be solved in the future.
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.
Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others. This question was reworded in 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.
Maturity comes as the result of a long train of events and accomplishments and failures. This prompt is an excellent choice if you want to explore a single event or achievement that marked a clear milestone in your personal development. Be careful to avoid the "hero" essay—admissions offices are often overrun with essays about the season-winning touchdown or brilliant performance in the school play see the list of bad essay topics for more about this issue.
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These can certainly be fine topics for an essay, but make sure your essay is analyzing your personal growth process, not bragging about an accomplishment. Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you?
What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more? This option was entirely new in , and it's a wonderfully broad prompt. In essence, it's asking you to identify and discuss something that enthralls you. Devon opens his essay with a story that is relatable to many: Struggling through a difficult activity rock climbing in this instance yet feeling determined to finish.
The author effectively expands from this one experience to how his learning style has changed in the past few years. There I was, hanging from the precipice, muscles trembling, fingers aching, sweat dripping onto my spotter twenty feet below. He could see I was struggling, and shouted words of encouragement, but my head was pounding too loudly to make out the words. During the initial ascent, I felt strong and confident, though the intense scope of the route had begun to loosen my physical grip, as well as my grip on reality.
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I made it to the final hold, exhausting every drop of energy, unable to fathom lifting my arm again. The wall then became a towering mental blockade. I screamed and shot my hand up in a final attempt to finish the climb. I was only hanging on by my fingertips and sheer determination, nevertheless I had made it to the top. My belayer celebrated and lowered me down.
Weak and exhausted, I could barely unclip myself from the harness; however, mentally I had never felt stronger.
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It is during these experiences that the world falls away; all that is left is the rock face itself. I become one with the wall, solely captivated by the placements of its holds and the complexity of its challenge. Time ceases to exist. Rock climbing is a second language to me. I grew up scaling the tallest trees I could find, desiring the highest vantage point. Growing up in the uniformly flat state of Florida, I was limited in my upward journey.
Luckily, I rekindled my love for climbing in high school, and now cannot imagine life without it. My passion for climbing is fueled by the adrenaline that pumps through my veins. At first, I was an impatient climber who would try and solve the wall before me, making split-second decisions.
However, this strategy rapidly tired me out after beginning to climb. Now, when I approach a wall, I first draw the problem out in my mind, using my hands to examine the holds.
Like a game of chess, I lay out an intricate plan of attack. If I am completely perplexed by a wall, I converse with other pro climbers to guide me towards the best route.
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Every time I interact with climbers better than myself, I learn a new technique and create new bonds. Being part of the rock climbing community has helped me develop my social skills. The best things about climbing is that there is no clear-cut way to climb a wall, and that there is always a new challenge. I get lost in the walls and climb for hours, as time becomes irrelevant.
I think of nothing else but reaching the last hold and forget all of my worries.
Even when my friends beg to go home from fatigue, I insist on attempting another route. Patience, collaboration, and determination are all needed when climbing a wall, like in any field of research. If one plan falls short, I reassess and approach the wall from another angle. Through this life-changing sport I have strengthened not only my body but also my mind, learning the beauty of problem solving.
Through her writing, Callie allows the admissions committee to better understand her approach to learning new perspectives. This essay highlights her personality and values and helps us imagine how she will collaborate with others throughout different spaces on campus in a diverse student body.
By broadening her initial anecdote and having the majority of the essay focus on her reflections and takeaways, we were able to spend even more time learning about Callie. For twelve years that was our beautiful home, and we enjoyed every moment together. Last summer, Emily visited my new home of five years, San Francisco, for the first time.
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It felt like no time had passed. We still laughed until our faces turned tomato red.
We still screamed our favorite Taylor Swift songs as if there was no tomorrow. Nothing could get in between the love we had for each other, even our vehemently opposing opinions. That challenge especially reflects the stagnant state of the current political climate in the United States.
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