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Is this a good common app essay?

debatepresdebatepres 0 replies5 threadsRegistered User New Member
In 2010, my mom was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, a neurodegenerative disease. I have witnessed her transformation from fiercely independent, to dependent on my brother, dad, and me. Before the disease, she did it all. She gardened, cooked, mowed the lawn, did laundry, and did everything for us kids. She was lively and social, and she chaperoned all of our school trips. She was everything I wanted to be. Now, all of that has been taken from her. She can’t spend as much time outside, cooking and doing laundry drains her, and she’s not nearly as social, because she can’t drive herself. Despite how difficult the situation has been for me, I know I haven’t experienced even a fraction of what she has, and I fear someday I will.

Multiple Sclerosis is a multifactorial disorder, meaning it is caused by a combination of environmental factors and genetics. Since my mom has it, this puts me at a higher risk than most people. Additionally, MS can emerge at any time, with some people being as young as 20 when they are diagnosed. This knowledge hangs over me, a constant reminder that life is truly short. This motivates me every day to strengthen my mind and body, and to achieve as much as I can. In reality, I may never get MS. But if I do, or if I get any number of other debilitating diseases that one can get, I want to be as prepared as possible. This has changed my mindset from one of “I’ll worry about it later” to “I’ll deal with it now”. When people have told me that I don’t need to know what I want to do with my life yet, that some people don’t know until they’re almost through college or even later, I have responded that I want to know now. This has driven me to shadow at the hospital, research different careers, and take classes geared towards future health professionals. This sense of urgency also drives me to learn as much as I can every single day. If I ever do get MS, one of the impacts would be decreased memory and cognitive ability. If that day comes, I want to be satisfied with the amount I’ve learned. I want my brain to be strong so I can continue working for as long as possible. If that day never comes, and I never get MS, then I’ll only be better off having learned as much as possible.

My mother’s disability has been truly eye-opening to me, and has impacted everything I do. If I ever do get Multiple Sclerosis, I want to be able to handle it with as much grace and strength as she has, and that motivates me every single day.


(Sorry for the long post, I appreciate any feedback I can get on this!)
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Replies to: Is this a good common app essay?

  • RainbowSkysRainbowSkys 14 replies5 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Hey you might want to contact CC to take this post down as it could be copied and you could be flagged for plagiarism when you apply. Good essay topic, but you are doing a lot of telling. Try to put stories in there with strong language and not just "i did this, then i did this"
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 34100 replies376 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    "Show not tell" means more than just saying you want x or vol at a hospital. It means a little more detail and reaction. Adcoms want to agree when they read, nod "Yes," not just need to take your word for it.

    Sorry, but a little too much here about MS and your mom. It leaves little space for "you," the applicant, to show the college what they want to learn about you. You can rework it, show the traits they like- your resilience, how you balanced time and responsibilities to school, ECs, friends, too. How you grew, not just the current idea of a major. Affection, sure. How this makes you reach out to others. Etc. See what we mean?

    Yes, you should ask for mods to edit. I worry less about plagiarism checks than exposing yourself/your essay so broadly.

    And be careful the final result doesn't hint you really can't leave home, are needed there.
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  • collegemom9collegemom9 795 replies30 threadsRegistered User Member
    edited October 7
    Oh noooo. Please ask for this to be removed...And I think this is an essay that's more about your mom than you.
    edited October 7
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