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Undergraduate Posts: 2

"Breaking Free from the Herd" - Barnard Personal Statement #1


camrynh508 1 / -  
Sep 12, 2018   #1

Barnard College application essay



Hello!

I will be applying ED to Barnard College and could use an opinion on the first of two required personal statements. The prompt is a pretty basic "Why Us?". Please be as honest as you can be!

Prompt: What factors influenced your decision to apply to Barnard College and why do you think the College would be a good match for you?

For as long as I can remember, I've been surrounded by herd mentalities. From a predominantly white city with an average income of over $100,000 to a small town with a school that banned the Confederate flag only after students refused to attend, I feel like I have always had ideas that transcended the environment I lived in. By going to Barnard, I know I will be surrounding myself with women who speak their minds regardless of the circumstances and who are determined to create possibilities for themselves by doing the impossible. Along with the incredible women at the school, resources like the Barnard Psychology Society and the opportunities for independent research with renowned faculty within the psychology department align flawlessly with my goal to run a private therapy practice. To me, being a Barnard Woman means constantly aspiring to inspire others- and attending a school where my intelligence and ideas are valued would be a perfect environment for me to live, learn, and thrive in.

Holt [Contributor] - / 6,681 1670  
Sep 13, 2018   #2
Hi Camryn, I think you are selling yourself short in this essay. You have a 250 word maximum for this combined prompt question and yet, you were able to whittle your response for both questions down to ne paragraph. Not exactly the promising and impressive response that you could have presented. You are not really offering an insight into how the Barnard way of life can fit into you culture, academic environment, and other interests. Specifically, you are missing out on the opportunity to integrate a Columbia education within your Barnard experience. The content of your essay is too focused on your personal reasons that you failed to develop a response that allows you to weave together a Barnard life using 3 of your specific interests within the realm of culture, academic, and extra curricular interests. All of which you can do as a student at the university. Your explanation as to how you can interweave all 3 aspects of your life into you time at Barnard will explain why the university is a good match for you.

Basically, this essay prompt is a trick question. The reviewer is intent on figuring out how familiar you are with the Barnard academic system and student community. The response therefore requires you to do a bit of research into the university covering various aspects of your like over the next 4 years as a successful student there. Cover the 3 important aspects of a students college life. Only by showing how you can successfully live within the Barnard system, which is not very strongly represented in this current version, will your essay be more informative as a representative of you in written form.


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