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What is the best way to approach the Supplemental essay?

omega007omega007 Registered User Posts: 580 Member
edited November 2009 in Colby College
How should I approach the essay?

In addition to your Common Application Personal Statement, please select one of the following quotations and, with reference to that quotation, comment on a personal experience, an issue of concern to you, or your thoughts about the future. We suggest that your supplemental essay not exceed 300 words, but you should feel free to approach the essay as you wish. (You might want to draft and save your response using another word processor or text editor, then copy your essay into the essay response box.)

"One way to open your eyes to unnoticed beauty is to ask yourself, 'What if I had never seen this before? What if I knew I would never see it again?'"
- Rachel Carson

"In matters of style, swim with the current; In matters of principle, stand like a rock."
- Thomas Jefferson

"To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at time of challenge and controversy."
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
Post edited by omega007 on

Replies to: What is the best way to approach the Supplemental essay?

  • omega007omega007 Registered User Posts: 580 Member
    anyone?...please
  • sailfishsailfish Registered User Posts: 125 Junior Member
    It's a hard question to answer. Do any of these prompts evoke a strong feeling from you? Does one appeal to you more than the others? I'd start with an almost instinctive reaction by choosing a quote that seems to speak to something I feel or believe strongly, or one that I can relate to experiences in my own life. Don't overthink choosing the topic since any of them could lead to a great essay if it gives you an opportunity to reveal something about yourself--ideally, something that isn't revealed by the other parts of your application.
  • mountainsmountains Registered User Posts: 756 Member
    My s chose the last quote and related a funny but challenging experience. It was very lighthearted yet poignant. Like sailfish said, don't overthink it and don't force it.
  • omega007omega007 Registered User Posts: 580 Member
    Thanks guys....but I'm seriously having worries over this topic....dunno what to do exactly...
  • sailfishsailfish Registered User Posts: 125 Junior Member
    Sounds like you're struggling--not uncommon. Not sure how much help you can get on this thread. Do you have a teacher or counselor you could talk to? Even a friend who applied to colleges in the past few years and wrote these kinds of essays? Sometimes if you just pick a topic and start writing you'll get a sense of whether you can work with it or not and have something a teacher or counselor could react to and advise you about (even if the advice is to start over). Good luck!
  • hbrad8002hbrad8002 Registered User Posts: 383 Member
    are you sure this is the colby's supplement this year?
    I downloaded the file and got this instead

    Supplemental Essay Topics
    In this section you have the opportunity to bring to life the person represented by the grades, scores, and activity lists that appear elsewhere in your application. Please be thoughtful, personal, and careful in your writing. There are no right or wrong answers; we are simply hoping to discover more about you as a person and student.
    In addition to your Common Application Personal Statement, please select one of the following quotations and, with reference to that quotation, comment on a personal experience, an issue of concern to you, or your thoughts about the future. We recommend that the length of your essay be between 300 and 500 words, but you should feel free to approach the essay as you wish.
    1. “One way to open your eyes to unnoticed beauty is to ask yourself, ‘What if I had never seen this before?
    What if I knew I would never see it again?’”
    —Rachel Carson
    2. “Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.”
    —Mohandas Gandhi
    3. “Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.”
    —Marie Curie
    4. “If you want to make peace with the enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.”
    —Nelson Mandela
    5. “The whole world opened up to me when I learned to read.”
    —Mary McLeod Bethune

    I'm having problem approaching the essay too
  • omega007omega007 Registered User Posts: 580 Member
    Is this the old or the new one? Can you e-mail them and ask? :S I'm totally confused about what to write.
  • ana92ksaana92ksa Registered User Posts: 29 New Member
    I am sure the ones listed by hbrad8002 are the ones for last year (fall 2009)...
  • hbrad8002hbrad8002 Registered User Posts: 383 Member
    so which ones are for this year? class of 2014 one
  • omega007omega007 Registered User Posts: 580 Member
    @ hbrad8002

    The ones I mentioned (Post #1) are for this year (2009-2010) a.k.a. Class of 2014

    So how are you writing it? Any ideas to share?
  • omega007omega007 Registered User Posts: 580 Member
    bump............bump
  • bballrocks015bballrocks015 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    I know I want to talk about coming out as gay, but im not sure which quote I want to relate it to, I feel as though it would lend itself well to 2 or 3 in the OP topics...

    thoughts?
  • katie8800katie8800 Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    bballrocks015- good topic, and could easily fit for either quote, but i would definitely go with the ralph emerson quote. although it depends on a couple of things (family support/ friend support/ school support or lack thereof), that would be the one i would chose
  • srrinathsrrinath Registered User Posts: 2,363 Senior Member
    @bballrocks015: it definitely fits better with the emerson quote than the jefferson one.
This discussion has been closed.