I have no idea what to write for the optional portion of the application. "If you think additional information or material will give us a more thorough impression of you, please respond below." Is this space to write another essay of our choice, or should we use the space to elaborate on other parts of the application, like awards we received?
Also, is the 100 word essay describing our cultural background in part 1 optional? I've heard it is, but will it hurt us to not write anything? I'm American with no interesting heritage or cultural diversity, so I can't think of anything to write there.