Originally Published in Hindustan Times Education Supplement
A lot of applicants plan to spend their summer working on essays. These are an important component of every student’s complete application package and the more thought and time that goes into writing them, the better. Students who start early are able to try out different stories, refine the telling of those stories so that in the end they represent an applicants authentic voice as much as possible. Rushing through the process of essay writing and submission results in incomplete expression and a superficial view of who the applicant really is. As all admissions representatives repeatedly emphasize, the essays are the only part of the application where they really get to know the applicant as a person, beyond the numbers, scores and resume. Understanding what matters to each applicant, how they spend their free time, where they have faced their biggest challenge or success, helps to differentiate one applicant among many.