Smiley face ever appropriate on college essay?

I would likely answer this as a quick “no” if I saw it posted, but if the essay is about what makes you lose time, and is lighthearted and ends with a reference about being teased at “nerding out” (verbiage not used in essay) could it possibly go over well to end with a =)?

I realize its not “professional” but if I were reading through hundreds of personal statements and the tone of the essay fit, I feel like I’d appreciate that =). Also considering they want to see who you are past your grades, and most of my essays are heavy as an aspiring trauma therapist and my coping mechanism is humor (I am quiet witty if I should say so myself =P) could it work to throw that little aspect of my “me-ness” in?

No. You can better express lightheartedness and humor in other ways. College admissions committees want to see how well you express yourself using the written word, in addition to saying something about yourself. Using a =) is appropriate for texting, shorthand, and casual communications with friends. It is most definitely NOT appropriate for a college essay, unless MAYBE in the context of doing something incredibly creative and original that would be a startling work of art AND say something about yourself - and that’s a BIG stretch.

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I used a smiley face in my essay because it was light hearted and added to my personality as well. I don’t know if it was appropriate but that’s just me. I will say that they wanted us to be creative and it was an informal prompt

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Thanks, I appreciate the different perspectives!

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Thank you that is helpful. It is a more informal prompt and I am leaning towards using it for the same reasons you stated =)

Did the prompt use an emoticon?

I have seen students take a number of approaches to be funny/cute to include drawings and color. While neither is my style, I have tried hard not to form a negative opinion because of the attempt. Since it will definitely not add much to the essay, and a reader will understand humor without it, why do it at all?

I say no, but if you do it - assume probably neutral.

If you really just really have to use it at the end. Like Go Blue :blush:

17/18 year old humor is different then 30-50 year old reader humor. If it’s light hearted then I think most will "get it. But if it’s an attempt to be funny… That I would stay away from.

Make your essays Personal, interesting and Unique (which is hard to obtain) and you won’t need the emojis.