Strategizing is quite possibly the most important step of all when it comes to writing your admissions essay. This step will set the tone for how to execute the rest of the steps. Be intentional and set aside ample time for this step, as it is largely overlooked by many. Below is a list of simple, but effective, suggestions that will get you started.
- Strategize with Friends
Nothing will get you in the right frame of mind for writing an admissions essay like surrounding yourself with others who are in the same situation as you. Find a group of friends or compile a group of complete strangers. You never know what advice or constructive criticism another person will have to offer.
- Set Personal Deadlines
Simply looking toward the day that your admissions essay is due can be overwhelming. Breaking up the process into days, weeks, even months, can help you to see your task for what it really is. This will also prevent procrastination. Set aside a block of time for each of these 4 steps. Be sure to allot enough time to make expectations for yourself before each step and review your accomplishments afterwards. This will keep you stress free through the entire admissions essay writing process.
- Make an Outline
Even when you are not working on your admissions essay, thoughts and ideas will be flying around in our head about how to execute it. Write them down! As you go through the day, be sure to document any important traits or experiences that you would like to include in your admissions essay, as well as any other points. Then, set aside time to compile these thoughts into an outline. Be sure to go through the school’s requirements and expectations for the essay and build your outline from that. You will always have this outline to refer to through the process, so you will never lose a thought or get lost.
- Case Studies
Case studies are necessary no matter what the venture, but especially here. In order to have the best admissions essay possible, you must read the best admissions essays! What was good about them; what was not so good? How can you apply these good practices to your essay? How can you avoid those mistakes that stood out to you? What did you take away or remember from the essay, and how can you make your essay just as memorable?
- Ask Someone with Experience
Many people have written admissions essays…you are not alone. Don’t be afraid to ask help from someone who has been through it before. Even better, seek a professional who has reviewed admissions essays or who is a professional at the college you are writing to.