White female, Illinois
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
Weighted GPA: 4.3
SAT Math: 610
SAT Critical Reading: 680
SAT Writing: 730
SAT Math Level II: 610
SAT Literature: 680
Varsity swimming (four years, captain as senior)
JV bowling (two years)
Academic team (one year)
Student council (one year)
National Honor Society (two years)
Spanish National Honor Society (three years)
Work as a lifeguard (all four years of high school)
40+ hours of community service
Had an interview with an alum last weekend on campus, I think it went pretty well
Neither parent has gone to college
Lived in South Africa for two years:
My appreciation for diversity was enhanced by living in Johannesburg, South Africa while in fourth and fifth grade when my father was working there. I realized the commonalities of grade school children all over the world when I joined my mother in assisting less fortunate students of my own age in a local slum. I was challenged by going to an American school, where my classmates hailed from over fifty countries and hardly ever stayed for a full school year. I lived in a multi-racial community where my closest neighbor was one of the three wives of the president of Angola. This experience has assisted me in recognizing my ability to overcome adversity and I now appreciate the differences in human character and lifestyle to a degree that I couldnt fathom prior to my time overseas. Many of my preconceived notions of other places in the world have been proven wrong through this experience, and in turn, Ive become an open-minded person and an advocate of compassion.
And if you want to read this, you can, but don't feel obligated. This is my main application essay for Northwestern:
Im not afraid to declare myself an undecided undergraduate; in fact, Im thrilled. I value the variety of programs and courses included in Northwesterns Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, and realize that the opportunities dont end there. While enrolled in Weinberg, I plan to take intriguing courses throughout the University, and further my knowledge by studying abroad.
I enter university unsure of my major only because of my confidence in Northwestern, and the fact that any major I eventually choose will be part of an acclaimed program at a renowned and recognizable university. Then, as a graduate of this institution, I will utilize my education to help create change in the world.
Stephen Colbert, famed Northwestern alum, may be the very reason that Im interested in politics. Although he studied in the School of Communication, he has shown me a passionate side of politics that I have come to enjoy, even through his satirical and obnoxious TV character. Ive been interested in political science since entering high school, and obtaining an interdisciplinary degree in this subject and another accenting subject would be ideal. I am drawn to Weinbergs Political Science Department by the possibility of studying abroad, the opportunity to take seminars that link all forms of political science, and the fact that many undergraduates in this program obtain interdisciplinary majors. I look forward to studying under Northwestern professors, such as Professor Elizabeth Shakman Hurd, whose current work concerning the impact of law and religion on international relations intrigues me. I plan to eventually become a college professor in a similar subject to that of my undergraduate major, and would be thrilled to work under someone who has accomplished my ultimate goal.
My tour guide, during my campus visit, came all the way from California, and told me he often gets asked why. He revealed to me that his top three criteria in picking the perfect school involved size, spirit, and reputation. These three basic expectations are identical to my own. The school I attend must be small enough for students to know their professors on a personal level, the school must have competitive sports teams and a lot of game day spirit, and the academics must be challenging as well as renowned. Northwestern is all three of these things, and boasts an ideal location as well. While the campus is contiguous and rather private, the city of Chicago lies just 11 miles away. Im familiar with Northwesterns Chicago Field Study, and realize that an internship in a government office may be available to me. What better place in the world to study politics than the Windy City itself? While only 50 miles from Chicago, my hometown of McHenry is rather insular and homogeneous. A move from my small town to this big city will be an exhilarating escape from my usual comfort zone, and I will exit Northwestern not only as a much more competent and eager-minded student, but as a human being with much more experience in diversity.
Im ready to challenge myself with new experiences while Im at university, and though Ive lived in northern Illinois the majority of my life, Northwestern is different from where Ive grown up. It will present me with new opportunities, a variety of intelligent people, and an education essential to my future plans. Northwestern University will provide me with the resources and education needed to achieve both personal goals and the common goal of each person seeking higher education: to become an informed and dynamic citizen of the world.
I can't make any changes to my application essay now, seeing as the deadline is far passed and my application is already in, so just let me know if you think it's worth the admission officer reading it, haha.
Northwestern is probably a stretch, and living in Illinois doesn't help, but I guess I've hung a lantern on my problem in my essay.