Essay Scoop: How to Answer Emory University’s Essays

Emory University is located on a beautiful campus in Atlanta, Georgia. Here is Empowerly’s guidance on how to answer Emory’s supplemental essay question.


In addition to the Common Application’s Personal Statement, please choose one (1) of the essays below (500 word limit). This supplemental essay should give us insight on your character as well as your potential fit with Emory University. Please consider your essay thoughtfully, as our Admission Committee and Faculty have special interest in this portion of your application.

Option 1: Last August, Susan Grant, chief nurse executive for Emory Healthcare, said this of Emory’s choice to treat patients with Ebola: “We can either let our actions be guided by misunderstandings, fear and self-interest, or we can lead by knowledge, science and compassion. We can fear, or we can care.” Consider her idea of doing what is in the public interest despite potential cost. Please discuss an example in your life or the life of another that’s come to your attention. (500 word limit)

Apart from academic performance, Emory is interested in your analytic and interpretive capabilities. This prompt is intentionally prescriptive while being simultaneously open-ended. Reflection and interwoven experiences form the backbone of your discussion. Focus on an issue and explain the contextual significance of an experience you have had. Concern for others is ingrained in the wording but the core centers on ability to reveal your personal connection to a problem through introspection.

Option 2: In the spirit of Emory’s tradition of courageous inquiry, what question do you want to help answer and why? (500 word limit)

Like in the previous option, you need to focus on your observations of past events and connect them to a problem you’d like to solve or at least mitigate. Your personal relation to the subject will form the basis of the reader’s understanding so clearly convey the key takeaways from your encounters. In either response you’ll need to explain your plan for addressing the concern raised. You can tie in specific classes, professors, research labs, research programs, clubs, student life, or other resources if you explain the skills/lessons you’ll gain.

If you have any other questions, reach out to us at Empowerly! We’d be happy to help you in crafting the best possible application you can put forward.

Questions? Let us know!