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This university has dedicated itself to "nurturing honest, eager, and critical minds" I can offer it

nerdella 2 / 3  
Dec 10, 2016   #1
How will you explore your intellectual and academic interests at the University of Pennsylvania? Please answer this question given the specific undergraduate school to which you are applying. (400-650 words)

A quote from the missions statement declares that the University of Pennsylvania College of Arts and Sciences has dedicated itself to "nurturing honest, eager, and critical minds." This is the kind of mind I have to offer: honestly interested in all subjects of humanities, critical of the flaws and merits of the resources offered, eager to absorb any and all new learning experiences and develop my own contributions. As a prospective English major and nonprofit worker, I first plan to take advantage of the exclusive research opportunities offered at UPenn to invigorate my academic accomplishments. I expect to take advantage of CURF programs such as Benjamin Franklin or Wharton Research Scholars to use research to educate others and expand my own knowledge of liberal arts and social issues/activism. As a student devoted to humanities, I am eager to get involved in and learn from each of the University's listed public cultural resources, from the Arthur Ross Gallery to the Penn humanities Forum. Kelly Writers House also sparks my interest as a chance to stimulate my interest and proficiency in all forms of literature. My face and name can also be expected to appear in a wide variety of workshops and contests, exploring all outlets of creativity and chances for personal growth. Like any other student, I also expect to be a frequent visitor of the University´s superior museums and library to research materials both for course studies and undergraduate research opportunities. The supplementary education opportunities at UPenn are unrivaled, particularly in relation to my intended major and career path- I do not intend to waste the opportunities provided with a UPenn education.

As a student accustomed to an overflowing but enriching schedule, there are several programs offered at UPenn I would like to explore and likely participate in to better my intellectual interests. I am thoroughly interested in pursuing involvement in the Blutt College Music Program as a vocalist, as well as taking advantage of the academic study opportunities of music offered by the Penn Arts and Sciences Music Department. The Civic House and Platt Student Performing Arts House are both relevant to my experience in and passion for performing arts and community service (along with the integration of the two as community outreach or therapy programs, which I dream of one day working in as part of a nonprofit organization). The Netter Center and Fox Leadership Program are additional organizations I plan to explore to look for more opportunities to benefit the community I hope to soon be a part of.

From a young age, my defining traits as a scholar and person have been passion and dedication. I have never been one to underestimate the power of education, and plan to keep my schedule as varied and full during college as it has been throughout my high school education. I have devoted the past 4 years of my life to literature, theatre, entrepreneurship, visual art, music, community service, exposure to social issues, and miscellaneous other interests and pursuits of skills or knowledge. The plethora of first-class education both in and outside the classroom offered at the University of Pennsylvania has not gone unnoticed or undervalued. True to the mission of the College, I plan to seek involvement in a large selection of the offered extracurriculars to ¨understand, appreciate and contribute to the achievements of the human intellect.¨
angeli6778 11 / 36 16  
Dec 10, 2016   #2
This is a well-written essay and you clearly have done your research, but the tone comes off as a little stiff and even smug in some parts: "My face and name can also be expected to appear...", "I expect to take advantage of...". If that's how you talk, then don't change! It just seems that you're trying too hard to sound intellectual. Also, all the clubs and opportunities you named washed over me, I didn't really sense a very strong connection you had with any of the activities named. Maybe instead of talking about so many, you should focus on a few. Ideally, talk about one in each category, like 1 academic program, 1 community service, 1 research thing, and so on. The goal in talking about Penn specifics is to show them you've done the research and also the meaningful contributions you can make. Quality over quantity.
OP nerdella 2 / 3  
Dec 10, 2016   #3
That's very helpful! I do unfortunately have a tendency to use a very stiff and formal speech pattern, especially when nervous and ESPECIALLY when speaking to authority figures. My friends and I have a running joke that I talk like Chris Traeger when I have an anxiety flareup. On your note to use less names and talk about meaningful contributions- do you think it would help if I used my past volunteer/performance/research/etc experiences and then talked about how I might do something similar while at Penn?
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 10,524 3442  
Dec 11, 2016   #4
Lyndsay, try to avoid mentioning quotes from the university objectives or website. It is already understood that you will be doing your best to embody these traits. The reviewer already knows about these information so there is no need to repeat it. What is important is that you show the reviewer how you plan to take advantage of the opportunities at the university, sans the quotes. Those are just word fillers meant to meet a particular word count. It is not really necessary to the essay and does not increase the notability of your content as focused on your personal sharing in the essay.

The concluding statement that you have is strong but weakened by the reference to the quote once again. The strongest point that your concluding paragraph can close on will be the part that says "...not gone unnoticed or undervalued." Adjust the sentence to simply reflect this as being your personal belief and philosophy for your time to be spent as a student at the university.
nazzia30 5 / 13  
Dec 11, 2016   #5
I really think this essay is well written. I think if you're sure of your capabilities then why not be confident and honest in letting them see that you perceive yourself like that. I was watching a video for a college and the people who reviewed applications clearly stated that they were looking for the go-getters and people who have no qualms about showing their strengths.

I think you've done the same :)

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