College Essay

Mattie Edits: My Own Common App Essay From 2009!

I’m a content marketer by trade. My old life involved me creating original written content for different websites. The goal of that content was not to sell a product inherently. Instead, it was to attract readers to the site and provide them value. The concept is that by offering credible content for free upfront, the consumer will come to trust, appreciate, and remember that brand when they want to make… Read More »Mattie Edits: My Own Common App Essay From 2009!

CostcoCollegeEssay

Ok Fine. I’ll Write About the Awe-inspiring Costco Essay

First thoughts: It’s aight. I see why she got in places. My biggest negative towards the whole thing was actually how calculated and polished the piece was. Yes, it’s a wacky Costco essay. But to a trained eye, it’s the work of a professional writer expertly crafting a work that will make a student come off well. One of the greatest magic tricks we as consultants play is making it seem like we were… Read More »Ok Fine. I’ll Write About the Awe-inspiring Costco Essay

Why You Shouldn’t Start a Non-Profit (And What You Should Do Instead)

There are two reasons it seems students choose to start non-profits: They want to look impressive on their college apps They want to help people Both of these are perfectly fine reasons to do something! But I would like to tackle each one and explain why I don’t think non-profits are the answer. 1) They want to look impressive on their college apps I don’t believe AOs believe/respect most non-profits… Read More »Why You Shouldn’t Start a Non-Profit (And What You Should Do Instead)

Hey! You Don’t Have to Start With Your Common App Essay

What I see a lot right now from you overachievers working on July 2nd is that it’s all about the Common App draft. It seems like your process is to write draft after draft after draft, tearing up ideas and starting over just as soon as you think you like some other idea better. Ya, don’t do that. I’m not gonna lie. The Common App essay is likely the single… Read More »Hey! You Don’t Have to Start With Your Common App Essay

10 Bonus Essay Tips I Couldn’t Stretch Into an Entire Blog Post

Hello! I have writer’s block! I don’t get writer’s block often, but when I do, it tends to be for a particular reason: it’s because I have stuff I want to write about but don’t know how. I have never – in my life – had too few things to say. It’s always the opposite problem. I pick my blog topics based almost entirely on what I want to write that day.… Read More »10 Bonus Essay Tips I Couldn’t Stretch Into an Entire Blog Post

How to Get Noticed and Stand Out During the College Admissions Process: Have a Weird Hobby

I have read a lot of student’s essays that I neither outlined nor edited. At my old counseling job, we had something called “final review,” where editors would get a massive stack of other editor’s students’ work and we would go through them to provide a final edit. I never liked this process because I quickly found my options to be “do nothing” or “freak out and leave like 40… Read More »How to Get Noticed and Stand Out During the College Admissions Process: Have a Weird Hobby

How to Create Easy, Original College Application Essay Topics. Introducing: “Half-Ideas”

In my experience, the majority of problems students run into with their application essays are based upon picking a bad topic. By “bad” I generally mean the topic falls into two categories: 1) Done to death 2) Too weird for its own good The first one I can easily provide samples for: probably my most common one is running track. A lot of students run track and want to write… Read More »How to Create Easy, Original College Application Essay Topics. Introducing: “Half-Ideas”

I Think Modern “Elite” Essay Are Terrible and Here’s Why

Early in my career, I read a book someone shared on here about how to write college essays. The first half I thought was pretty good. It went over idea brainstorming, plot structure, and how to stand out with your story. But then I got to the second half in which the counselor author showcased his favorite works. These were the essays he best though exemplified the type of work… Read More »I Think Modern “Elite” Essay Are Terrible and Here’s Why