Showing interest for a college in my essay

<p>hey everyone, I'm starting to prepare my common application when i apply for colleges this year. I am by no means a slacker, i have a 4.2 weighted gpa, have taken 5 AP classes and will take 3 more next year, and i have a 1950 for my SAT (hopefully going to be a 2200 when i retake with much more preparation). One thing that I have seen many people advise is that you should show interest for the universities that you are applying to (such as researching, etc...). However, I have never understood how you are supposed to display such knowledge. What should i do, and what are effective ways of showing interest to potential colleges? (I'm looking into Ivy league caliber schools)</p>

<p>Visit the schools (on official visit days-- or on your own, in which case you're suppose to give your name in somehow(?))</p>

<p>I don't think I will be able to go on any college visits all the way to ivy league schools. What information should I be looking up about a school, and how should I display my knowledge of this information to colleges? I don't want colleges to think that I don't have a genuine interest in a university.</p>

<p>bump - anyone else?</p>

<ol>
<li><p>The quality of the questions you ask at your interview--even if its with an alumni interviewer--say a lot about how much research you've done about the school.</p></li>
<li><p>The response to the question "Why college X" on the application is another good way to show them you've thought about why this college is the right fit for you.</p></li>
</ol>

<p>I don't think showing interest is as important at Ivy League schools. In fact, they do not keep track of who comes to tour the campus as the other schools do. Some non-ivy schools do track level of interest. If you cannot visit the school, you can show interest by applying for scholarships at the school, applying ED, requesting an alumni interview, contacting coaches if you are an athlete, and contacting professors in a department in which you are interested.</p>

<p>
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The response to the question "Why college X" on the application is another good way to show them you've thought about why this college is the right fit for you.

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</p>

<p>This does carry weight at Penn, for example. Visits don't really count for much, but a well crafted essay that shows that you "get" Penn, its offerings and what you would bring to campus is a component of a successful application.</p>

<p>I've already contacted coaches, but the thing is I'm not a strong athlete even though I have a chance of participating if I keep on working hard.
Broetchen, when you say that an essay that shows that the writer "understands" a colleges offerings is successful, what are some examples? I don't know what I want to major in yet, so I can't mention individual majors</p>

<p>You need to demonstrate why you are a good fit at the college you are applying to. While you don't want to tell the school what it already knows (why it is a great place), you want your essay to demonstrate how you will take advantage of what the school offers. You absolutely do not need to know what you will be majoring in. But you would want to mention any special programs or offerings unique to the institution that you would be interested in, extracurricular activities and groups that you would be participating in, anything to demonstrate your appreciation of the school and your intention of utilizing their resources and contributing to the school's community.</p>