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Founder & Queen Bee

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DIY college >>

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College essay clichés to avoid (and better alternatives)

  1. Sarah Hanlon

    May 21st, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    I’m writing my essay in response to prompt 6 on common app about my passion for medicine and how the process of everything is captivating. I’m also mentioning how meeting the doctors who took care of my grandfather when he was being treated for cancer inspired me bc of their kindness and compassion in my family’s time of need. Is that too cliche? I don’t want to be one of the million essays haha

  2. Brooklyn Dippo

    May 21st, 2019 at 5:55 pm

    Hi Sarah! That doesn’t sound cliche at all. When it comes to death & sickness, cliches tend to happen when people try to answer the meaning of life and death. It sounds like you’re planning to take a personal event (your grandfather’s cancer treatment) and talk about the doctors around him who inspired you and connect that to your passion for medicine. I would just be careful not to spend too much time talking about your grandfather or his doctors. You want to make sure that your essay is about YOU and your passion for medicine. What medical organizations have you gotten involved in since your moment of inspiration? What classes have you taken in the field? How are you setting yourself up for continued success as you pursue medical school? What character traits do you have that will get you through a long and difficult field of study? Be sure to download my essay checklist to help write your essay! I’ll also be opening up an online summer program to finish college apps (including essays!) that is starting on June 15. If you’re interested, send me an email at brooklyn@thenectarhub.com 🙂

  3. Usma

    July 25th, 2019 at 2:01 am

    I want to write my essay about realisations that I’ve made after my grandfather’s death — through his various seemingly little actions that I remember but never paid too much attention to or read into then. The realisations came as I dealt with problems in my own life, where I would just let my mind wander around and thought of the past. Is that too cliche?

  4. Brooklyn Dippo

    July 28th, 2019 at 5:58 pm

    Hi Usma! As long as your essay is focused on your realizations and personal transformations, then you should be okay to talk about your grandfather’s death. You mention your grandfather’s little actions that you didn’t notice or appreciate until after he died. Those could make a great introduction to your essay but just make sure to keep this part of the essay brief and then focus on how his death has changed you. Dig a little deeper into your reaction to his death and your actions since then. Remember, the college essay is used to showcase parts of your personality that can’t be put on a resume, so make sure those amazing parts of you shine through!! You can always contact me directly if you want to talk about your essay a little more in-depth at brooklyn@thenectarhub.com – thanks for your comment!

  5. Amelia

    August 28th, 2019 at 4:49 am

    I’ve been wracking my brain trying to think of something interesting or unique about my experiences for college essays and really have no clue what is or isn’t a good idea. So far my favorite idea is growing up with my family taking extended roadtrips…while I was carsick. How my solution would be to open my window and imagine what was going on in every car, town, or landmark we passed. How observing and imagining the lives of the people around me cultivated my desire to connect and communicate with other people, learn their stories, and share them. I’m not sure if this is interesting enough or super random…also currently undecided about what major I’d like to pursue, I’m tied between teaching, design (especially graphic design and photography), and maybe public relations. Thanks for sharing so much help and advice!

  6. Brooklyn Dippo

    August 28th, 2019 at 4:58 am

    Hey Amelia! I’m already hooked by your story… I feel like it has novel potential! Definitely college essay potential. You’re telling a story, connecting it to who you have become (desire to communicate & tell stories) and the last link would just be hinting at how that will make you an incredible student. Don’t worry about not knowing your major or thinking you might change it down the road, they know and anticipate that, just speak to what is interesting you right now and what you’d like to pursue. You’re on the right track & I hope I can read your essay!

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