Greetings High School Students and Families- and Especially Juniors – Class of 2021!
The Common App Prompts for 2020-21 are Unchanged
The Common Application has announced that the Core College Essay-or Personal Statement prompts for the 2020-21 college admissions season will be the same for the fourth year in a row.
This is great news giving juniors(”21) ready to begin their college applications – and if you attend my June College Application Writers’ Block Workshop—you’ll have completed your core essay before summer! Doing so can reduce much of the unnecessary stress some families experience over the college admissions and college application process. That said, there’s much more to consider beyond the college application—including finalizing your balanced college list, eploring majors, finding a campus “fit” and college campus visits are discussed in other blogs.
While I encourage students to begin brainstorming ideas for for their college application essays, juniors should be focused on other important tasks including academic performance, managing and excelling in extracurriculars, test prep, preparing for AP exams, and meeting with your college counselor to build your balanced list of colleges. Time permitting- consider campus visits.
The Common App essay prompts for 2020-21:
- Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
- The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
- Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome?
- Describe a problem you’ve solved or a problem you’d like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma – anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
- Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.
- Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more?
- Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you’ve already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design.
Transformative experiences both within and outside the classroom uniquely shape each young adult’s academic and personal identity. Experiences connecting with family and members of “communities” help our young adults embrace introspection – where young adults learn how to leverage their strengths to find their place in the world. These same experiences are also the basis for the college essay(s) students will write during the college admissions application process (at the end of their junior year/start of senior year) providing readers of their college application with information that reveals who each student has become –and, in particular– the potential impact each young adult may have on a college campus and as a potential alum!
YOUR COLLEGE ADMISSIONS ESSAYS!
Types of College Essays
THERE ARE TWO TYPE OF ESSAYS:
COMMON/COALITION APPLICATION CORE ESSAY (650 WORDS)
COLLEGE SPECIFIC SUPPLEMENTAL ESSAYS (VARYING IN LENGTH: 150 TO 800 WORDS – AS FEW AS ONE AND AS MANY AS SEVEN ADDITIONAL PROMPTS).
THE COLLEGE ADMISSIONS CORE ESSAY
Are you on target? What’s you college admissions plan?
In addition to helping with college essays, College Advisor Bonnie Rabin, PhD works with students of all academic levels and interests to select an appropriate list of courses, balance extracurricular experiences, select and apply to collegiate summer programs, plan your SAT/ACT strategy, and guide you through all aspects of your college applications- For more information about my educational approach and services- -please click to schedule an introductory conversation.
— Students stay on target when they set aside dedicated time to work on their essays and applications in a small group supportive settings – with one-on-one personal writing conferences.
Bonnie R. Rabin, Ph.D.