1 Common App essay, 3 writing supplements, 4 music supplements, 2 recommendation letters (1 from my academic teacher and 1 from my club advisor), yet I still have a nagging feeling that I am not good enough to become a Fighting Irish at University of Notre Dame.
What else can I add?? A video of me playing Kabalevsky at the age of 10? An original composition made during my sophomore year? Luckily, my college and career counselor stopped me from including those “unnecessary embellishments” to my college application. If I add too much of what is not important, college application readers will miss what IS important, that is the person who I revealed myself through the personal statements. According to the USC college application reader who came to my school, the personal statement is where the reader gets to know about you past the grades, GPA, and scores. As obvious as this may sound, you need to make it PERSONAL. I may have not been accepted to a school (I have not even submitted my app..), but I know that I need to make my personality and character jump out in the essays. You want the essay to sound like you, but at the same time, you want others’ opinions. In addition to showing the essays to teachers, family, and friends, show you essay to a person who you are not close. That person will act like the college application reader: he/ she will learn about you through the essay. If you remain a stranger to he/ she, then that means your essay needs more work and you need to slather that essay with more you. If you come alive to the reader, then that means you have accomplished your goal. What is your goal? Is it to get into college? Or is it to accomplish something great after high school (attend college?)? One great thing that I noticed about Iago’s goal of manipulating people to turn against and slaughter each other, is that he had fun doing it. He had a great experience (watching people suffer and stain their hands with blood of their loved ones), but if we look past his evilness, he can be a decent role model. He teaches us to enjoy what we do, and by doing so, we will be able to do what we enjoy better. What I’m trying to say, is that not only should you have a goal, you should also look into ways to make that journey of accomplishing your goal more pleasurable. For example, instead of just writing for the college application readers, I wrote those essays to learn more about myself. I realized that I am an interesting person (not sure if college application readers will agree..), and I am glad that I have written 4 essays in order to realize that. Additionally, I discovered that I am a great pianist (though much better two years ago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A06ireKOoEw) because I was able to brush the dust off three retired pieces and replay them from memory for my music supplement. Video of me playing the Chopin Revolutionary Etude http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvNxEhSgsfs