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'Complexity is what makes me great' - Common App Essay


raslacrosse 5 / 5  
Dec 27, 2011   #1
This is what I am thinking my Common App main essay will be as of right now. The prompt was topic of choice and thank you for any suggestions you might have.

P.S. Do you think I should keep the last paragraph or is it silly.

Completing the Common Application is a rite of passage, like reaching puberty or experiencing your first crush; everyone has to do it. You're required to sum up your time on this planet in 500 words or less. It's a daunting task. If I could encapsulate my whole being in 500 words or less, I wouldn't be worth your time. I've done, seen, and felt more than 500 words could ever portray, in the last year-let alone my entire life.

Complexity is what makes me great though, the fact that I'm not simple enough to be described in 500 words. I pass out when I see blood, but have logged over 300 volunteer hours in the past year at a local retirement home. I live in the middle of the city, but I'm president of my Future Farmers of America chapter. I love to understand things, but what I love about physics is that it constantly shows me I still have so much more to learn. I have a soft voice, but I was born to lead.

It's out of these complexities that a unique being is formed. I'm not a number or a piece of paper; I can't be pinned down easily. That's what makes me interesting. That's what makes me worth your time.

Morgan Scott Peck once pleaded, "Abandon the urge to simplify everything, to look for formulas and easy answers, and to begin to think multidimensionally, to glory in the mystery and paradoxes of life, not to be dismayed by the multitude of causes and consequences that are inherent in each experience -- to appreciate the fact that life is complex."

Our society, myself included, has developed the need to reduce everything into simpler pieces, in the process losing the complexity that makes every object beautiful. A student is not defined by numbers, just as a politician is not defined by his or her party or an employee by his or her job. It makes it easier sometimes when we simplify and it's tempting to shrink everything into manageable pieces. Every once in a while though, we must appreciate the world for its complexities. No two snowflakes are alike for a reason. The complex version provides us with the beauty, mystery, and intrigue that the object holds, that simpler forms could never reveal.

So I ask the admissions committee to look at me as more than a collection of one-line descriptions, to appreciate all the complexities of what I have done and what I hope to accomplish, for the complex picture tells a more interesting tale than the simple one.
SeniorMel 7 / 45  
Dec 27, 2011   #2
I see the main point of your essay but it really doesn't catch or hold my attention. maybe you should pick another topic.
deremifri 9 / 137  
Dec 27, 2011   #3
The last paragraph is actually not silly, but honestly you use the wrong approach.
To me it sounds like you just used the theme of complexity to praise yourself,
and the "I have a soft voice but I was born to lead" part:
come on, you do not want to write that.
If you were really sincere about a human is too complex you should portray yourself
in a normal light.

And overall, what do you think the admission office does?

Of course they "appreciate all the complexities of what I have done and what I hope to accomplish,"
and they are not reducing you to a one dimensional person. This is the whole point of the idea of the essay in the application.
Suzhou 3 / 7  
Dec 27, 2011   #4
In my opinion, I don't think you should include the last line. The admissions office is going to read thousands of essays like yours where people try to affirm that they're more than just a resume with their essays. Instead of asking for an understanding of what you've achieved, talk about it. Write about everything you'e done, all the goals you've reached and struggles you've overcome.
shelia1993 4 / 22  
Dec 28, 2011   #5
I have to say that your essay is unique and intriguing. But maybe you can involve more your thoughts than your deeds.
I really like the quote you used:)Good luck and have fun!
prd93 2 / 7  
Dec 28, 2011   #6
While your topic is a good one and you certainly express it well enough what I think holds back this essay is its tone. It sounds a bit too tongue in cheek for me. I suggest leaving the last paragraph be and removing the first paragraph and maybe amending the first sentence of the second to bring in the idea that you are more than 500 words. Check mine out...
Musicforleisure 3 / 33  
Dec 28, 2011   #7
I like the main idea! Actually I like the beginning and I like this part "I can't be pinned down easily" very much. However, I think it would be great if you could give more solid examples. For example, add some personal examples when you talk about your complexity. It is slightly abstract, but of course, I don't think you want it to be too concrete cos otherwise it might ruin the concept of complexity?

And I agree with Seniormel, i think the last sentence is a bit off. Maybe, you should tie in the first sentence and the last sentence and mention about the 500 words? This is just my opinion, though =)

Overall, I really like the essay--it's nicely done :D

I hope this helps : )

Good luck!

and could u please take a look at my essay, too ?
Thanks!
premed123 2 / 3  
Dec 28, 2011   #8
Admissions know people are more than a 500 word essay. Try and pick something significant in your life something that intrigues you, something that changed you. Talk in detail about that. One well described and important subject will show the person reading your essay that yes you are a complex person but it will show them who you are. It will give them a look at one aspect of you. not barely scratch the surface of the complexity of you.


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