One of the major college essay mistakes students too often make is writing about how beautiful a campus is. We know — this sounds silly. Why is this one of the biggest mistakes a student can make in their college essays? It’s a complement, right? The fact is — sure, it’s nice to attend a college that has a beautiful campus. But in your “Why College” essay, writing paragraph after paragraph about how beautiful the campus is will hinder your chances of admission. A beautiful campus should in no way be one of the seminal reasons for why you want to attend a university.
It’s not like you’d ever write that a college isn’t beautiful, just as you wouldn’t tell a date that you’re interested in that he or she isn’t good looking. Stating as much in your college essay is superflous. It’s telling college admissions counselors what you think they want to hear. The fact is, they know they’ve got a beautiful campus. But what they also know is that if you’re spending so much real estate in your “Why College” essay telling them how green their grass is and how perfectly manicured its bushes are, you probably don’t know a whole lot about the university.
This major college essay mistake smells like you don’t know what you’re talking about, that you’re just putting words on the page for the sake of putting words on the page. It smells like you didn’t do research about the university. Instead of writing about the grass, write about classes. Write about professors. Write about how you can pursue your academic interests. Write about your passions and how you intend to further explore them at the university through their various organizations and teams. Write your “Why College” essay as though you actually know what the college is all about. After all, you should have visited the school to which you’re applying! And if you haven’t done that yet, you might want to get on it before you click “submit.”