Essay Scoop: How to Answer Boston College Essays

Julia de Raadt
Julia de Raadt

Julia has dedicated much of her career to education. Since commencing with Empowerly, Julia has looked after the research team which handles student questions on different topics about college admission.

Boston College is also known as the home of the eagle. Boston College, founded in 1863, was the first established higher education institution in the city of Boston. Admission to the school is selective, with about 30% of applicants admitted each year. In this article, we will give you the scoop on the Boston College essays.

The writing supplement in the Boston College application provide applicants an opportunity to enhance their application and provide important additional insights about themselves. Here below are some tips on responding to the essay prompt.  

We would like to get a better sense of you.

Please select one of the questions below and write an essay of 400 words or less providing your response.

Similar to the Notre Dame optional prompts, your motivations and observations form a crucial part of your response. Additionally, the way in which you’d hope to address the issues you’ve noticed is especially important. In any of the following prompts you’ll need to provide a thesis that bridges these two halves. You’ll only be able to express your thoughts in about 3-4 paragraphs. Be sure to include references to specific observations and provide enough information for the reader to understand the significance of it on your beliefs. Spend one paragraph to provide this backstory and the rest to explain your projected trajectory at the university (think about academic programs, professors, courses, clubs, or traditions) and how each resource takes you one step further.

1. What contemporary issue or trend relating to politics, culture, and society, or foreign policy particularly concerns you and why?

This essay is intended for those pursuing public policy, international relations, or any other similar college major. The important part of this essay is actually explaining why it matters to you or concerns you. We usually recommend 2 body paragraphs devoted to why it matters.

2. Many human beings throughout history have found inspiration and joy in literature and works of art. Is there a book, play, poem, movie, painting, music selection, or photograph that has been especially meaningful to you?

If you read a lot for fun or have a specific work in mind upon reading this prompt, it can be a powerful essay. If you only do required school reading, this prompt is probably not for you.

3. Contemporary higher education reflects a tension between preparing for a meaningful life and preparing for a career. What are you looking for in your undergraduate education? Which emphasis is more important to you at this time and why?

This is an introspective prompt that is suited for all types of applicants, and is our fall-back in case the other prompts do not work. Generally, we will state a major or course of study and support it with previous experiences and some of “Why Boston College”.

4. “Magis,” a Latin word meaning “more,” is often cited in reference to goals of Jesuit education, which seeks to help students become better, do more, and have as much impact on society as possible. How do you hope to achieve the Magis in your life?

Boston College is a religious university, although once you get there, religion is not that heavily played up. This prompt is less about religion and more about the goal of helping society. I would reflect – is this something I actually believe in? How much does it matter to me? If you don’t feel a spark, focus on Prompt 3. Remember, in any of the Boston College essays, to find ways to put your best foot forward.

Questions? Let us know!