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Your college admissions essay is key to enrolling you to your chosen college. But writing an essay that decision-makers will love isn’t easy. It can even be downright embarrassing just like these self-unaware college admissions essays to Columbia University.
However, you’d be surprised by what you can write as long as you write from the heart and through your experiences. It not only lets you write in a more exciting way. It also makes your essay more legitimate and acceptable by your readers.
Throw in some wit too as this will make your essay more interesting. It’s also about being dynamic where the readers read your entire piece from start to finish.
In this article, you’ll read some of the best and most memorable college admissions essays. These should inspire you to write one down if you’re applying to college.
If not, then kick back, relax, and behold the funniest and most heartfelt essays you’ll ever read.
1. Hugh Gallagher
Hugh Gallagher’s essay shows how a properly-done humorous piece can be an effective tone for your essay. This essay won him first prize in the humor category during the 1990 Scholastic Writing Awards. This also got him accepted to NYU which he eventually graduated in 1994.
It might sound hilarious, but it showed how he thought outside the box. This also showed to the university his optimistic side. Just the kind of student they need — hopeful, persistent, and all-rounder.
And even if most of what he said weren’t true, it unveiled his charisma and passion for excelling above everyone else. After all, school is about dreaming high, right? Well, that’s what he did right here.
2. Cassandra Hsiao
Cassandra Hsiao’s essay was supposedly written just for herself and her mom. However, it went viral because of its heartfelt and meaningful tone. The content of the essay served as an outlet for her thoughts and emotions.
But this simplicity is what made the essay tick. It was very touching as people can easily relate to it. The struggles she went through and the relationship she had with her mom was easily relatable among college students.
Sharing experiences that resonate with readers is a great way to earn their respect and favor. Furthermore, it also portrayed her authentic self, one that isn’t embellished by fake achievements. It’s her life story, told in her perspective.
This essay is all about writing from your heart and letting the reader witness your story. It also helps if you allow your experience to guide you in writing your essay. There’s nothing more touching and relatable than a feel-good, true-to-life story.
Therefore, by embracing who you are, others will too. In this case, it’s the university that accepted her.
3. Luke Kenworthy
Luke Kenworthy’s college admissions essay shows that nothing is impossible if you want something to happen.
Having been rejected by four universities, Kenworthy decided to seek the help of a mentor, which led him to write about his personal experience as a child.
This essay worked because it caught the sympathy of the reader. This also let readers understand Kenworthy’s situation and why he is that way. Some might see this as asking pity from others, but it really isn’t.
In fact, his sufferings as a child justified his possible academic failures, which might be the reason why he was rejected by other universities. Tapping into the emotions of other people is a strong way of getting their favor. In this case, it’s him getting the sympathy of the university admission.
Furthermore, his conclusion was simple yet powerful. It showed that he can still persevere even in the worst situation possible. He never ran out of hope even he failed countless times. That’s just what universities need, a person who can excel and thrive despite the odds.
Writing an essay from the heart isn’t as easy as it seems.
The compelling essay examples above (except the first one) draw from firsthand experience. Clearly, there’s nothing more powerful than stories that shaped a person’s life for the better.
However, some of you feel that your experiences aren’t enough to interest college admissions. You don’t have a grand story to tell like Cassandra and Luke. As a result, you may resort to buy research papers online to help lift the burden of writing a college admissions essay.
But if you really want to earn your stripe, then you need to take matters into your own hands. You can only do this by writing the essay yourself.
Another thing that the essays above possess is personality. You need to know what kind of person you are before you write about yourself. Finding yourself will help give you the confidence to share your voice through your essay. And decision-makers will appreciate that.