How important are college essays?

We have evolved from an education system of rote learning to analytical abilities and conceptual studies. It is obvious that with the passage of time, the interlinked arenas have caught on this bandwagon too.

Each year as more students are applying to colleges, they are submitting more applications than ever before, resulting in colleges receiving record numbers of applications. As a result, the volume of applications to highly selective colleges has reached new heights. Considering that admissions counselors have only a few minutes to read through each application, students need to view their essays as an opportunity to showcase their talents and interests, and to tell their story. Think of it this way, numerous students with straight A’s along with excellent SATs drop their application to colleges. Goes without saying that not everyone can be admitted, hence a “cherry-on-top” factor needs to be there. For US applicants, the essay does this wonder.

While competition is fierce for the toughest programs, universities really are seeking to help students. They want people to attend their college who will get the most from the program while also being able to contribute to a greater whole and give definition to the school. Just as you are seeking to distinguish yourself in your college application essays, schools are looking to distinguish themselves among other universities. Applicants who clearly demonstrate their potential, regardless of test scores or resumes, have a good opportunity to receive an acceptance letter. However, even for schools that you are relatively confident will select you, submitting an outstanding college application essay is still valuable. It can result in offers for scholarships or entrance into special programs that will broaden your network and expand your opportunities, thus enhancing your overall experience in the program.

Think of your essay as a chance to speak to the admission committee. It’s volatile. That’s probably the best way to describe it. A great personal statement will always, always help you. A weak essay can sometimes hurt, and at other times the reader won’t even blink an eye in the face of outstanding achievements and academics. As it’s a one-page story vs. years of hard work in high school, you want to do the best you can on it and not risk it.

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