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Why Summer for Essays?

How often are high school students asked to compose an essay using first person? Almost never. So when these students come upon the college application essay they are approaching a task that is foreign. Add to this the general self-consciousness of many teens and the overall picture of acing the college application essay becomes somewhat bleak.

So what is the student to do to be successful with these “first person” essays? One element involved is the willingness to reveal personal attributes and character. Start early. Start before the Common Application opens and before the majority of colleges open their own applications. Perhaps a good way to start is to write journal entries once or twice daily, some about events and others about reflections. It might also prove fruitful to write some brainstorming ideas. But writing is the key.

Examine some of the essay prompts that are already available. The five Common Application prompts are on that web site and many colleges and universities have posted their individual prompts well ahead of their applications. This is a wise move for the student because it provides time to initiate and develop revealing essays prior to the busy load that the fall semester will bring.

Summer provides the time, the space and the freedom that can open the pathway to great personal essays. There are few distractions and periods of relaxation are available. There is time to discuss the prompts and time to search for a unique approach. The student can examine the past or look to the future.

Lesley Miller, MA, AC Ed, Director at College Consulting Inc. reminds students that it can be critical to get feedback both while writing and when completing an essay. Although reading sample essays is a good idea, a focus on being original remains central. Pinpointing an event, an experience or an activity that holds passion for the student usually leads to a successful writing.

Find yourself a comfortable place, some chunks of time and begin the processes that will bring ideas to light. Record them as they come. Later all the efforts can be refined for a final product. College Consulting Inc. responds to your specific questions when you submit the Contact Form.

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