Reading and Ivy League Admission

Reading and College Essays, College Essays and Reading, Reading for College Essays

Writing about reading in college admissions essays is often a great idea (photo credit: Johannes Jansson).

Perhaps you’ve heard in the past that reading is really important to ace your SATs. And it’s certainly true. The more you read, the greater your vocabulary will become, the better you’ll do on the verbal portion of the SATs. But reading throughout your young adulthood (and childhood) isn’t only important so that you can master your SATs. It’s also important to develop your imagination, to learn to think creatively, to improve your own writing skills, and, yes, to help make your college admissions essays stand out from the pack.

It’s important to demonstrate a love for reading in your college essays. Reading and Ivy League admission are, after all, an inseparable pair. College admissions essays are a perfect forum to showcase your love of reading. Maybe it’s writing about a favorite character in a work of fiction who has immensely impacted your life. Maybe it’s sharing an anecdote you remember about a figure whose biography you read. Maybe it’s writing about the specific style of prose of a given author. Maybe it’s comparing the style of one author to the style of another author. Maybe it’s pretending you are a character in a work of fiction. Whatever direction you choose to go in your college admissions essays, it never ever hurts to read. It only helps.

College admissions counselors equate a love of reading with a love of learning, with a love for discovery. And why shouldn’t they? Most college applicants only read what is required of them. So it’s refreshing when a college admissions essay comes along that clearly demonstrates an applicant’s love for reading. These essays often prove the memorable ones as college admissions counselors sift through a stack of sports, music, and community service personal statements.

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