Hello! I just wrote this essay for undergrad admissions to Pitt.
How have you made an impact at your high school or within your community?
choose one example and explain. 200-300 words (this is 286)
Every Valentine's day, I would pack up my cheesy pink cards with candy taped to the back, anticipating the heart-shaped brownies and rose petals on our desks at school. I would remind my family I loved them, and show affection to all my friends. It was a day for loving and caring for your neighbor. That is, until February 14, 2018 arrived. I checked my phone and watched as the horrific event took place: shots were fired at a Florida high school. My heart sank. I called my friend who had moved to Florida very recently. I got no answer. After a few hours, more information was released about the shooting and I was finally able to take a breath. She was on lockdown, but she was at a different school. As days went by, the victims of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting began an organization to stop these shootings for good: The March for Our Lives. I found myself engulfed in the movement. I helped spread the word and organize the march in Fort Worth. I called my senator, made flyers and passed them out to anyone who would accept them. I did everything in my power to help set the movement in motion. When it finally came time to walk the streets, I got on a plane and flew to Washington, D.C. to be part of the largest march in US history. I will always advocate for safer schools and do my part in preventing any more children from losing their lives in the classroom. I was a part of something that continues to impact our country almost a year later. I am a part of something that will impact generations to come.
Thank you for your help!! Any feedback is welcome.
Before I start my comment I am also a high school senior finalizing my common app and supplemental essays.
When I read your essay I thought it didn't give me a reflection of who you are. To me I read this and thought you decided to take action after a traumatic event. I live in Florida, and I applaud you for trying to make a difference. But I think your essay would be better if you referenced an example where you took initiative to create change in your community, not an example where you reacted after something bad had happened.
Emily, the essay flies off in 2 different directions. The first, indicates how you participate in Valentine's Day activities at your school. The second, is all about the shooting on that fateful day. While I can understand your concern and desire to help, you did not really make an impact at your high school or within your community. Continuing to advocate for a cause and making an impact in relation to change are 2 different things. In this essay, you are merely stating that you are advocating for a cause. The cause you are involved in has yet to make an impact on school safety. It is still a hotly debated issue, therefore, there is no impact created on your end.
Think small. Making an impact can be something as simple as helping to care for an elderly neighbor (impact within the community) or tutoring a classmate in need who constantly failed in class but passed when you tutored her (impact in the high school). Don't go national. You won't be able to make an impact at this point. Keep it simple and relevant to the prompt. Your statement does not cover your own high school nor your own community so this is not the right topic for this essay prompt.