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How important is the essay to Northwestern?

ka7Scopeka7Scope 34 replies20 threads Junior Member
I feel like I wrote a really kickass essay and I was wondering how heavy it will weigh in compared to grades, extracurrics, teacher recommendations, etc.

Which is the most important and which is the least important at Northwestern?
7 replies
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Replies to: How important is the essay to Northwestern?

  • evanian15evanian15 152 replies6 threads Junior Member
    Here's a list from Northwestern on College Board:

    Very Important-
    Academic GPA
    Application Essay
    Class Rank
    Rigor of secondary school record
    Standardized Test Scores

    Extracurricular Activities

    Alumni Relation
    Character/Personal Qualities
    First generation college student
    Level of Applicant's Interest
    Racial/Ethnic Status
    Volunteer Work
    Work Experience

    All of these are important, but the essays are in the top tier.
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  • MoonbearMoonbear 4 replies0 threads New Member
    I know this response is overdue, but I still wanted to throw in my two cents just in case you were still wondering. I was accepted this year through the Early Decision round. NU was a VERY high reach school for me as my statistics were heavily outweighed by my essays and extracurriculars. Still, by telling a powerful story and stating strong reasons as to why I wanted to attend the school, I was blessed with great news. I truly do believe that an awesome essay will serve you well. Good luck!
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  • HeisenbergykHeisenbergyk 258 replies3 threads Junior Member
    The essay is VERY important for NU, as is high academic interest and varied extracurriculars. I would say the essay can help you overcome lower grades/test scores in some cases, but only if your reasonably in NUs baseline range to begin with. (ie if your getting some Bs in lots of honors level classes you'll have a shot, but if your getting Cs or getting mediocre grades in easy classes a essay won't do much to change that). Teacher recs can be useful if they give major insight on something about you (or a EC your in and your passion for it ) but they won't make or break you app and honestly most are really generic and have little impact on your app.
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  • queserrvaqueserrva 88 replies9 threads Junior Member
    Yup, the essay is god damn important. Results may vary but it can boost one with a 28 ACT to acceptance or it can degrade one with a 36 ACT to rejection.
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  • CaliCashCaliCash 2759 replies69 threads Senior Member
    @Moonbear You got a 2270 on the SAT. What are you talking about?
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  • stahboystahboy 421 replies8 threads Member
    I agree with @queserrva I might have gone a little overboard on the word limit, but made sure not to include nonsense
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  • danieltheboidanieltheboi 24 replies18 threads Junior Member
    From personal experience, it is one of the MOST important things about your application.

    My school tracks the acceptances of past students into Northwestern through a site called Naviance, and it tells you statistics like "Lowest GPA accepted." My GPA was well below this mark, however Northwestern likes to see a lot of interest. In my essay, I got very specific and I really stated my interest, and I did not expect to get accepted, but I did. I honestly believe that my essay was the main reason I got accepted into the school.
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