Seniors – What To Do in July

This column is geared toward rising seniors who will graduate in June 2012.

By now seniors should be getting close to having their final college list complete. Once the list is complete, it’s a good idea to start thinking about essays. For essay inspiration, here is an amazing video to show how changing words can make a big difference:

For UC schools, two essays comprise the personal statement. Students can split the essays any way they want in terms of word count as long as the total is not more than 1,000 words. (1,000 words is about 2 pages double spaced.) The essay prompts stay the same from year to year and can be found here.

Many private schools use the Common Application and those prompts will also be the same for the class of 2012. Although the application is not available to fill out until Aug. 1, here are the essay prompts for this year:

  1. Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk you have taken, or ethical dilemma you have faced and its impact on you.

  2. Discuss some issue of personal, local, national, or international concern and its importance to you.

  3. Indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.

  4. Describe a character in fiction, a historical figure, or a creative work (as in art, music, science, etc.) that has had an influence on you, and explain that influence.

  5. A range of academic interests, personal perspectives, and life experiences adds much to the educational mix. Given your personal background, describe an

  6. experience that illustrates what you would bring to the diversity in a college community or an encounter that demonstrated the importance of diversity to you.

  7. Topic of your choice.

Students will pick one prompt to answer in 250-500 words.

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