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White Privilege as Common App topic?

ally5732ally5732 1 replies2 threads New Member
Hello, I was thinking of writing my common app essay about my realization of my own white privilege and how I'm unlearning my internalized racism, etc. Would this be a good topic or is it too overdone/annoying? Also would this topic be too risky? Thank you!
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Replies to: White Privilege as Common App topic?

  • MWolfMWolf 2802 replies14 threads Senior Member
    I think that you are correct - it is likely overdone, and likely to be very risky. Moreover, it may be difficult to achieve the most important purpose of the essay - showing something about yourself which is not on the rest of your application, something would make you attractive as an applicant.

    There are too many pitfalls in this topic, too many ways that things could go wrong. There are also way to many nuances, and it is too easy to get sucked into the topic in general rather than focus on you. Since the essay is supposed to be about you, focusing it at least partially, on what other people suffer will pull attention away from you. Alternatively, focusing on yourself may make it seem that you see the suffering of other people as a backdrop for your personal growth (which is the opposite of what is happening inside of you and what you want to show).

    These a re just a few of the dangers. Leave this topic for a lower stakes essay.
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  • collegemom3717collegemom3717 8043 replies85 threads Senior Member
    edited July 23
    Agree w/ @MWolf

    Look at your application as whole- the essays give you a tiny space to show things about you that either don't show up other places in your application, or that you want to emphasize by an example.

    Things that are intensely personal are hard to write about, not least because it is hard to have perspective. In this instance, as @MWolf points out it is very, very easy for words you write meaning one way to come across completely differently than you intend. If you have learned anything about racism it surely includes the awareness that how you see something is not necessarily how other people see it!
    edited July 23
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  • jym626jym626 57824 replies3031 threads Senior Member
    Ditto. While you do want to show personal growth and insight, you don’t know who will be reading it and how they will respond.
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