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essays on pre-application supplement

danalynnedanalynne Registered User Posts: 219 Junior Member
edited September 2006 in Amherst College
I have read and re-read the essay choices on the supplement.
What ever happened to straight forward essay questions that are understandable to a relatively intelligent 12th grade person? My parents who are very bright people read these essays and ended up scratching their heads in confusion. How do these barely comprehensible quotes allow us to show our true selves? Any other seniors out there pondering these questions? Any of u Amherst students want to try to help? By the way this is the former Danashu (had to change username). Thanks for input.
Post edited by danalynne on

Replies to: essays on pre-application supplement

  • chillax88chillax88 Registered User Posts: 413 Member
    after reading the choices i was a bit ***ed out. ill likely go for the kennedy quote
  • DeanchhswDeanchhsw Registered User Posts: 71 Junior Member
    Hi danashu, I am glad that you are still looking into amherst :)

    The supplemental essay topics, it seems, haven't really changed from the year before. Now keep it mind that these quotes can cover a broad range of topics. The sixth quote, for example, of an individual whose life holds a great, heavy cargo, can be cleverly manipulated into(as I did with mine) a great illustration of personal struggles- i.e. my life having a great, heavy cargo. The fourth was linked by one of my accepted friends as an illustration of racism in america and his personal expereiences pertaining to it. And I'm just throwing off from the back of my head that the Kennedy one can be used to delineate your dreams, how you intend to function in society, whatever.

    I know that these essay topics are very random - it requires much more thought than a regular common application essay, and I think that is precisely what Amherst intended. These quotes are not meant to be "discussed". You do not even have to direct quote them in your essay, as long as your essay topic, whatever it may be, has some, even the most vague conceptual connection to one of these topics.

    Now, I'm not an adcom - but I think what they will look for more in the essay is YOU, not the validity of the conceptual link between your essay and the prescribed essaytopics. So naturally, don't worry about it. One of these six choices will give a lightning strike. It did to me while I was sitting in the toilet(how random) and then I could suddenly just go and write it.

    Again, these quotes are not to be academically examined and discussed. They are just broad areas of fields that you can link yourself, and your stories to. I would have been happy to let you read my essay, but I'm afraid it contains too much personal content to be disclosed. Good luck, if you have any more questions, post it here(although I doubt that I come on to college confidential that often).

    Do you remember me, anyway? haha.
  • jegan3jegan3 Registered User Posts: 701 Member
    I actually really like the Amherst essays. I think the key thing to writing them successfully is viewing them as guides rather than set topics. The instructions ask you to "respond" to one of the following quotes--the way I interpret that is that to think about how you feel after you read it and base your essay off that.

    One of my best friends was accepted RD last year, and that's basically how hers was written.

    Anyway, just my two cents.
  • danalynnedanalynne Registered User Posts: 219 Junior Member
    Thanks guys for responding to my posting.Your thoughts were helpful(truly) and appreciated.
  • 2incollege2incollege Registered User Posts: 95 Junior Member
    When I told a friend who is an Amherst alum what my son wrote about last year on his common application and in response to the "heavy cargo" quote, she said, "He's IN! Amherst wants to see evidence of meta-cognitive thinking." He got in.

    That's my best advice, then. Take the quotes and think outside the box.
This discussion has been closed.