In today’s ultra-competitive admissions process, your personal statement has never been more important. Unlike standardized test scores and GPAs, an admissions essay can truly set your application apart from those submitted by the thousands of applicants you’re competing with. Even near-perfect scores and grades are not enough to earn you admission at the most elite schools and programs today. That’s because the average applicant is significantly more qualified today than he or she was a decade ago. With so many qualified applicants competing for a limited number of spots, admissions committees have turned to other elements of the application to make difficult decisions about who to accept and who to reject.
Many colleges and universities require a college admission essay as part of their admission application, and scholarship applications often include one or more essays in addition to such objective information as grades and test scores. The typical question asks you to share personal information—allowing the selection committee to get to know you—such as your plans or goals, an important event in your life, your philosophy and/or beliefs, or your financial situation. Writing this college admission essay is an opportunity for you to stand out among the applicants and to prove you’re the most deserving candidate. Be sure to keep certain things in mind as you write this essay: