The "Why are You Applying to Our College?" Essay

What They are Looking for in the Essay Questions

The admission committee wants to know why you believe you are a good match with their college. They are looking for insight for the following three things:

  1. Are you likely to graduate from this college?

  2. How will you contribute to the campus community?

  3. Are you likely to accept an offer if one is extended?

Do Your Research on the College

Research is always important since the college you select will be one of the more important and decisions you will probably ever make. Take some time before starting this essay and review the university’s website and admissions brochures. Be sure to talk to any friends, neighbors, relatives, or teachers who may have additional knowledge of the college. (Example: A Harvard alumni can definitely tell you more about Harvard than you will find in an application brochure.)

What to Include in this Application Essay

Be sure to specifically state the names of particular classes, professors, extracurricular activities, and events that sincerely interest you. Be sure to carefully analyze why you are attracted to these items. The admissions office is looking for your well-thought-out reasoning.

One Last Note

Do not go overboard and come across with insincere flattery in your essays. You also don’t want to directly address how likely you are to graduate in 4 or 5 years with a degree from their college. This will come through indirectly.