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UPENN undergrad application. Prompt: Exploring intellectual and academic interested at UPenn

Kyonabelle 2 / 4 2  
Nov 26, 2015   #1
Hi there! I'm applying for UPenn's school of arts and social sciences. I'm way under the word limit, so I'm a tad afraid I've been discussing things that are not pertinent to what the question is asking. I'd appreciate any help rendered. Thank you!

Prompt: 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)

Essay:Ever so often we hear the phrase, "Things happen for a reason". Whoever said this definitely meant it as an encouragement - but what if it was a justification for human nature? People often comment that I am kindhearted or sensible for the things I do and the conversations I engage in. As a child, I took it upon myself to consistently do things favourable in the eyes of others. I would observe people's likes and dislikes, finding out every single detail of their lives and what makes them who they are. Picking out their strongest characteristics, I learnt from them and wore personas that would make me look the best. I never accepted their compliments because I knew that underlying my acts of charity was a intense discomfort for being ostracised and a deep-seeded desire for acceptance.

Regardless if it is shown outrightly or hidden deep into the pits of one's intentions, we are all selfish. We rely on our intellect to perceive what might or could be and foolishly delude ourselves into thinking we know everything. Eventually, we arrange for ourselves an illusion to convince ourselves of our morality, patting ourselves on the back to assure ourselves, "We are good people".

In spite of so, I am not wholly convinced that humans are completely evil. While the choices we make are either "good" or "bad", the situation can easily flip if the story was viewed from another point of view. Segregating us into categories merely on the basis of our choices might not be the most telling of who we are. Humans are far more complex than we perceive them to be, and a matter of "good" or "bad" simply will not prove anything.

While my personality might not be Stephen Chbosky's idea of a "wallflower" and my dullness would barely tickle the intellect of Sherlock Holmes, I suppose my habit of observing and the thrill of mysteries has led me to explore further about sociology, in particular social psychology.

The investigative skills students are equipped with and being able to work among a diverse group of students dedicated to research and exploration at UPenn's School of Arts and Sciences is an intriguing experience I hope to be able to participate in. The rich historical vision and inquisitive nature that Benjamin Franklin had set UPenn's course upon, to undercover deeper and raw insights into human nature and the impacts of how our surroundings impact our relations and decisions with one another, is something I am extremely interested to research and uncover more about.

Nobody is capable of doing everything, but I believe that everyone can do something. While certain things that happen are still a mystery, there definitely is a reason behind everything that happens and I hope to be able to contribute my worth through studying and understanding these intentions better. Perhaps then, I might be able to break free from conventional justification and be empowered to do things for a greater cause and a better reason.

(words: 499)
irhame 52 / 50 25  
Nov 27, 2015   #2
In spite of so, I am not wholly convinced that people are completely evil.

... story was viewed from another point of perception .

What is more, humans are far more complex than ...

Apart from this, while my personality might not be Stephen ...
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Nov 27, 2015   #3
Annabelle, your gut feeling about your essay was right. It did not respond in the correct manner to the prompt. Your first half was not even relevant nor connected to the prompt that was provided. In fact, the first half was so irrelevant that I believe that an admissions officer will not even reach the second paragraph of your essay before moving on the next applicant in his list. There is an imperative need for you to revise this essay.

Being an incoming freshman, you have some idea as to what or where your intellectual inclinations lie. So this is what I would like you to do, open a word program and create two columns. In one column, I want you to list down your intellectual interest and in the other column, list down the library, department, professor, extra curricular program, or anything related to the university that has a direct link to your academic interest. After you have come up with your list, pick the intellectual interests from it that you feel will be best addressed by the intellectual and academic environment of UPenn.

Now, open a different sheet and start drafting your essay. Discuss the items in your list in such a manner that you will properly reflect the intellectual and academic interests that you can pursue at the university. Make sure that the topics you discuss have a direct tie-in with your chosen major. You need to relate all of these because you are being asked to discuss these in relation to the undergraduate department you are applying to. So your chosen subjects and related academic activities should clearly indicate the possible growth that you will have as a student at UPenn based upon these interests.

While you have 400-650 words allotted for this essay, you don't have to max it out. When you run out of things to say, end the essay. For this type of prompt, you should be all set to edit your essay when you hit 500 words. If you try to just fill out the word count, the information you present may become useless and just ruin the possibly good quality essay that you have already developed. We can help you polish wha tyou have written as long as you stick to and present the proper prompt requirements.
justivy03 - / 2,366 607  
Nov 27, 2015   #4
Anabelle, the word restriction is absolutely the last of your worries now.
I read through your essay and yes, it does not answer what the prompt is asking you to do.

The prompt says, 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.

All you have to do is focus your essay on the prompt, answer it accordingly and make sure that you integrate a little information on your academic background.

Let's try by following the guidelines below;

- what is your academic background
- how will this background influence your academic goals
- why do you choose UPENN
- what does UPENN have that corresponds to your academic goals
- what can you contribute to UPENN as your future home and the community as a whole

Finally, what is the ultimate gift that you can share, academically and personal, to the institution when you leave after serving for few years.

I hope with this guidelines you will be able to come up with a well written essay and when you do, post is here on EF so we can assist you further.
ashleen 1 / 1 1  
Dec 2, 2015   #5
You probably want to focus more on your academic, you wrote too much on your interest.
You will need to link back to U Penn on how it will provide you with better education (something unique that only U Penn offers?) and how will you give back to the school. And maybe on how you will spend your time there? Since the question is HOW will you explore...

Just my opinion, your paragraphs are kinda short, don't make it 1-2 liner. Expand each of your idea or compile the same ideas together.

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