With most college essay applications, supplemental essays are often required by schools to accompany the main application essay. What sets these supplemental essays apart from the main essay is that these essays are specifically catered to the college and university that the applicant has selected to apply to.
This means that applicants should be doing research on each of the specific schools so the supplements don’t seem generic and like every other college essay application. When it comes to these supplements, applicants should make sure that these essays are specifically catered, don’t sound generic, and show a genuine interest through their college essay application.
One of the best ways to writing a good supplemental essay is to do research on the specific program the applicant is applying to. While this may seem very tedious, it shows an interest on any applicant’s college essay applications if he or she alludes to a specific program within the school that interests him or her. This genuine interest could carry a decent amount of weight when being read by an admission officer. One of the key characteristic elements that this adds to an essay as well is it removes a lot of the generic nature that plagues many college essay applications. Especially for applicants who have extremely long lists, supplemental essays can easily become copy paste versions of other supplements with very minor tweaks. By actually citing programs specifically catered to the college or the university, it forces applicants to go back and specialize each essay to actually sound like it’s directly addressed to that one single school instead of three different ones with similar programs.
One common tip to prevent one’s supplements from becoming too generic is to play a modified version of mad-libs with one’s essay. For any applicant, how he or she would do this is remove all the proper nouns regarding the college in their supplement and replace them with blanks (similar to how the actual game works). Next, the applicant should read through the modified essay and see if all the blanks are easily replaceable with any college or university, regardless of which school the supplement was originally catered to. If the essay still flows very smoothly with any school inputted into the blanks, then the supplement is way too generic and the applicant should seriously consider making some big edits.
Supplements are another tedious facet of college applications that every applicant has to run through. That being said, applicants must follow these few guidelines to make sure their supplements of are of acceptable quality:
- Do research on each specific school to show a genuine interest in the school and its programs.
- Make sure each supplement is specialized and doesn’t sound like it could be used for a bunch of other schools.
- Above all else, supplements are another way to tell a story on a college essay application to further impress admission officers, taking advantage is what separates a good student with a mediocre application from a good student with an outstanding application.