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First and foremost, you should make sure to pick an activity that has meaning, and one which you haven’t already written about.It’s usually a good strategy to pick something that you’ve been doing for a long time, where you can showcase key qualities like commitment, perseverance, and leadership.
I also want to recommend you take a look at our Essays that Worked: real essays submitted by real students who have since matriculated at Connecticut College.
These essays are terrific, and you can find them listed on the right side of this page.
Upon analyzing its application archives, Admit See found students who referred to their parents as “mom and dad” in their application essays were more likely to get accepted to Stanford, while students who called them “mother and father” were more likely to receive a Harvard admission offer.
These findings, which were published by Fast Company, are based on essays — 539 of which were from students who were accepted to Stanford and 393 of which were from students who were accepted to Harvard — uploaded to the site at the time the study was conducted.
If you’re dying to write about an activity or job you just started, however, you can still write a compelling essay about why you decided to start, what drew you in, and what you’ve learned so far.
You want to contribute additional context to what the Harvard admissions officers know about you, and you only have a small space to do it in, so use it wisely. Harvard wants you to list any of your intellectual activities that you have not mentioned elsewhere in your application. Maybe you shadowed someone with a position you’d like to hold one day to get a better idea of what the day-to-day looks like. While Harvard lists this essay as “optional,” know that, at least in our minds, no admissions essay is optional.Also feel free to use their sample prompts as inspiration.Overall, remember the purpose of any admissions essay is to showcase something about yourself that admissions would not otherwise know about you.Are you applying to other schools with more specific prompts?Maybe those prompts will pull something unexpected out of your noggin that feels interesting enough to include or expand upon for Harvard?I will undoubtedly be picked for an interview - what is it Harvard wants to see in an applicant?I understand high test scores and good grades are a given, so obviously I've got to figure out a way to make myself shine under their attention.But there are other ideas in that head of yours — we know it!Unless Harvard is your first choice and you are tackling this application with an early submission deadline in front of you, you may want to leave this essay until the end of your supplement run.Once uploaded, their application materials can then be accessed by high school students who are preparing for the college application process.Every time a high school student views a college student's application materials, that college student is paid a stipend by Admit See.