Just received an email with the new UChicago Essay Prompts for the Class of 2021! Without further ado:
1) What is square one, and can you actually go back to it?
Inspired by Maya Shaked, Class of 2018
2) Once, renowned physicist Werner Heisenberg said: “There is a fundamental error in separating the parts from the whole, the mistake of atomizing what should not be atomized. Unity and complementarity constitute reality.” Whether it’s Georges Seurat’s pointillism in “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,” the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls, quantum physics, or any other field of your choosing, when can the parts be separated from the whole and when can they not?
Inspired by Ender Sahin, Class of 2020
3) The ball is in your court—a penny for your thoughts, but say it, don’t spray it. So long as you don’t bite off more than you can chew, beat around the bush, or cut corners, writing this essay should be a piece of cake. Create your own idiom, and tell us its origin—you know, the whole nine yards.
PS: A picture is worth a thousand words.
Inspired by April Bell, Class of 2017, and Maya Shaked, Class of 2018 (It takes two to tango.)
4) Alice falls down the rabbit hole. Milo drives through the tollbooth. Dorothy is swept up in the tornado. Neo takes the red pill. Don’t tell us about another world you’ve imagined, heard about, or created. Rather, tell us about its portal. Sure, some people think of the University of Chicago as a portal to their future, but please choose another portal to write about.
Inspired by Raphael Hallerman, Class of 2020
5) According to Lázló Babai, Professor of Computer Science and Mathematics at the University of Chicago, it is unfortunate that mathematicians do not have any procedures in place for revoking theorems once their validity is established because sometimes our results would be nicer without them. If you had the power to obliterate any known truth for the sake of getting nicer results, what truth would you choose to obliterate and why? This power cannot be used as a Ctrl-Z on events in your own life.
Inspired by Erin Horning, Class of 2016
6) In the spirit of adventurous inquiry, pose your own question or choose one of our past prompts. Be original, creative, thought provoking. Draw on your best qualities as a writer, thinker, visionary, social critic, sage, citizen of the world, or future citizen of the University of Chicago; take a little risk, and have fun. Explore past favorite prompts at https://collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/apply/essay/past-essay-questions
What do you guys think? I'm not sure which one I will end up writing. The fifth one sounds rather interesting, though..