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The Ivy Coach Daily

October 20, 2014

Drivel in College Essays

Don’t write trite drivel in your college admissions essays.

There is an article on “The Huffington Post” entitled “7 Cliché Application Essays You Should Avoid” written by Gianna Sen-Gupta that is spot on. Are there other cliché essay topics to avoid? Absolutely. But Ms. Sen-Gupta has certainly pointed out seven topics that college applicants should 100% avoid at all cost. No essay — no matter how good the student or his or her parents think it is — should ever be written on one of these seven topics. Because it will be cliché drivel. And the last thing that you ever want to submit to highly selective colleges is cliché drivel.

So what are the seven topics Ms. Sen-Gupta points out to avoid? “A service project shows your passion for helping others.” Uh huh. Let’s crown you for sainthood now. You’re amazing. And your essay is awful. “Your family’s history in a specific profession.” True. While this isn’t one of the most common trite topics chosen by applicants, Ms. Sen-Gupta is right in that it’s not a good one. Write about you and show who you are, not what your family has done. Nobody cares about that except maybe your Mommy and Daddy. “Overcoming an athletic injury.” Correct. Avoid sports essays entirely. Highly selective colleges receive way too many sports essays. It’s impossible to write an original and powerful sports essay so don’t even try. Because: You. Will. Fail.

“A rundown of a national disaster.” After Katrina, so many students submitted Katrina essays. After 9/11, the essays were about terrorism. Don’t write about Ebola right now. Colleges are going to get way too many Ebola essays. We promise. “The sports game highlight reel.” Again, avoid sports at all cost! No sports injury essay. No came from behind to win it all essay. No, no, no. “Talking about your role model.” Colleges want to learn about you. They don’t want to learn about Justin Bieber, even if Biebs is your role model.

Wondering if your Personal Statement essay topic is trite? Well, schedule a paid consult with us today to find out. And, even more importantly, let us brainstorm with you changes and possibly a new topic. There is indeed still plenty of time before that November 1st deadline. So don’t stress. We can help you turn around that essay very quickly, even if it will be on an entirely new topic. Because we won’t work with a student if he wants to submit cliché drivel. That’s not how our students get in. No cliché drivel in college essays!

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