What Colleges Look for in an Application Essay

Updated: Jun 24


Many applicants make the mistake of writing too much about the experience they are sharing and not enough about how it impacted their lives in the present and future (past, present, and future progression).


The purpose of the essay is not to reiterate information already included on transcripts or applications, but rather to shed light on the applicant as a dynamic, interesting change agent who has the potential to make a difference on campus and in society. Colleges want to see your lesson learned, how you handle life’s challenges, how you have evolved, and how you might positively impact their institution. The essay should focus on one moment in time or one story and its outcome; it should not be a long list of accomplishments or achievements.


They are looking for critical analysis, contemplation, reflection, personal growth, and perspective.


Do you have all of these elements in your writing skillset? If not, let's develop them together.


- Christa