Could somebody who have already passed at UChicago, or really know how they evaluate the applications, answer this thread please? I really really really want to go to UChicago... How were your UChicago essays?
I'm a current student at Chicago. I won't pretend to be an expert on admissions, but I've been around the block enough with my school.
Libby Pearson (admissions officer) mentioned on one of our threads that they are not LOOKING for particular answers to essays. They want to read what you want to write about. Don't worry if it's not personal; don't worry if it is. There's no real "formula" for what they are looking for.
It sounds like you are proud of the response you made for the uncommon prompt. If that's the case, submit it. If you want, you can also submit your common app essay as a supplemental or in the additional comments section. That way, you know that they will be able to evaluate you on two different pieces.
Most schools might be interested in what you do. I think Chicago is much more interested in how you think. So even though you don't think you're saying much about yourself, by giving voice to your ideas, you are in actuality saying a lot.