cliche college essays

Cliche college essays

That senior year is underway, only one thing stands between you and your totally awesome collegiette years: college applications.

But at the end of the day, the college essay is the best way to show your top schools what you’re all about, so the key is to be unique. Kids are used to trying to doing that [for] a paper for an english class,” says michelle podbelsek, co-owner of college counseling associates, an independent college counseling service for students and their parents.

So, hillary, a sophomore at uc berkeley, says that, like most rules, college essay rules are made to be bent.

One college distinctly remembered me based off of my essay about coming in last and said that they loved it because it was so unique.

There are a million and one crazy ways that high schoolers have worked their way into a college, but in the eternal words of he’s just not that into you, bear in mind: these are the exception, not the rule.

Trust us, the last person a college admissions officer wants to admit to their school is a proven , do they really want a bulky flip-flop lying amongst the papers on their desk?

College essays

You’d be shocked how many students miss this basic concept when submitting their supplemental essays, and we can only imagine how many admissions officers have been tempted to write “smh” in bright red pen across their entire applications.

You write your essays—even if they’re for your safety schools—learn as much as you can about the school.

A phrase may sound perfect on paper, but when you speak the words out loud, you might find that you’re way off ’t let college applications drag down the mood of your senior year!

College applications

Things that don’t matter on your college to do when you don't want to go to your parents' alma up for our newsletter to get the best of hc delivered to your you an aspiring journalist or just looking for an outlet where you can share your voice?

When left to its own devices, though, even the sharpest teenage minds frequently gravitate towards college essay topics that are so common that they can only be described as clichés: stories and messages that every adult has already heard and, probably, already lived tendency is understandable, since students write college essays only once.

It’s also unfortunate, because essays based on cliches — even well meaning ones — usually leave scant impression on admissions cliched topics exemplify what i call asymmetrical importance: what matters dearly to a teenager matters not at all to an adult reader, especially one as detached, anonymous, and disinterested as a college admissions officer.

Ve listed below the cliches that i’ve come across most frequently in my career. You’re going to college as an adult, not as an ity service community service projects are varied enough that many of them make for great essays. Some projects simply fulfill school requirements or, worse, are contrived to look good on college applications.

Morals, and broad conclusions essays sometimes end with sweeping conclusions and life lessons derived from the experience about which the student has written, thus bringing any topic into cliche territory.

College application essays

No matter what, those students who intend to be exceptions to these rules should expect to work doubly hard to tell stories or explore angles that will be flattering to further reading: a discussion of this year’s common application essay e counselor and specialist in college application booker calls on donald trump to resign over sexual misconduct u. Survey of our students has revealed that one of the most feared and most difficult parts of the college application process is the college admission essay. This is hardly surprising – after all, the college essay is unlike any other writing assignment that most students have come across. Ve read a lot of college application essays, giving me some small idea of what an average college admission officer goes through each year. After reading several hundred college admission essays, you find certain themes that an overwhelming number of students seem to rely on. Here is our list of the top 5 essay clichés:These essays follow a formula: struggle + success/failure = epiphany.


In these essays, no matter what the struggle is, and no matter whether the student ultimately succeeded or failed, there’s always a magical epiphany at the essays go something like this: “i worked really hard to pass math/become class president/make friends/win a hotdog eating contest/etc. Problem with these essays is twofold: first, the way in which most students approach the big realization is about as subtle as a ton of bricks hitting you in the face; second, the realization is usually a pretty far reach compared with the struggle the student has overcome.

Unless your epiphany is particularly insightful and meaningful, or unless you are a particularly strong writer, it’s best to avoid the big two: lessons from the less an attempt to bolster college applications, tens of thousands of students participate in community service projects of all kinds.


It becomes somewhat less awesome when students write about their community service projects without fully considering how their essays might be type of essay describes some sort of service project – often volunteering at a soup kitchen or homeless shelter or going on a mission trip to an undeveloped country.

If you’re a really good writer and you’re willing to get lots of input from teachers, tutors, counselors, or other third-party readers, then you can craft a truly excellent essay on this , many students fail to consider their essays from the point of view of someone who has never met them.

It’s not fair, but it’s essays go like this: “my family decided to move to america, and i hated it because i had to struggle to learn english, but i worked really hard, and now i’ve proved that i can do anything.

And sadly, even the most well-crafted immigration story can be rendered cliché by the sheer number of immigration essays submitted to colleges each a student has a particularly unique immigration story, it’s probably best to avoid this college application essay is not the ideal forum in which to confess all of your past crimes, failures, and misdeeds.

They think they are writing a story of redemption and reformation, but usually they are simply confessing to things the college never would have known about in the first place. The entire purpose of the application essay is to present your strongest self; confessing to past prejudices, academic failures, or – worst of all – illegal activities isn’t usually the best way to accomplish this ts spend their entire high school lives building a list of impressive accomplishments and extracurricular activities, so it’s little surprise that many students write about this in their application essays.

Your essay is not a resume – it is a story that reveals something unique about who you are and why you would be the perfect person to have on a college campus.

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