College Application Essays

College Application Essays

What makes a good college admissions essay? If you ask our college admission counselors they will all tell you the same thing. We want to hear your voice. The key item to remember is the white-out test. If the review committee can cover up the name of the college or the name of the writer and the essay would still work if you replaced it with another place or person, the essay is not doing its job. Common App, the universal application that over 600 colleges use offers seven prompts for students to choose from. Read below for an incredible example from CLC’s very own Autumn Erwin.

Students: If you have an admissions essay you’re proud of– send it in! Let’s feature it in!


Prompt:  Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging 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?


Let me put it down. 

Titles tell a story. Some can be right on the money, some can be a bit confusing. As a child, the title isn’t what interests you, it is the cover. The start of the book. The fun pictures on it. The cover makes you want to open it. If the child can’t read, the pictures are all they have to look forward to. 

When you get older, there are no pictures. Just the words.  When you are told to read a chapter in a novel at the age of 8, you dread it. Or at least that is what went through my mind. I sat in my 3rd grade class looking down at the book my teacher gave me. I looked around and fellow classmates were excited. I wondered why because when I flipped through the pages: no pictures. 

“Alright class, let’s try and read the first chapter alone. If you need help, call me over to you.” I grabbed the book and examined the cover. It was a boy running from an explosion. The title, “I Survived.” 

My 8 year old self didn’t like explosions. More reason for me to not want to read. But I opened the book and started reading. I read so slowly to try and get it over with. Please let me put it down. 

Now, as a 17 year old senior in highschool, I find myself quite the opposite of my 8 year old self. When I pick up a book, I cannot seem to stop reading. I am reading 400 page books in the span of a week. 8 year old me hates 17 year old me. 8 year old me longed for the pictures. 17 year old me despises the picture.  8 year old me would probably tell 17 year old me that she’s crazy, but 17 year old me would tell her that life isn’t about pictures given to you, but the pictures you make.  You could ask me when that change came about, but I couldn’t tell you how, just why. When I read a book, the words and the pages engulf me into them. I create my own pictures. Seeing it within my imagination. Books take me into their world and out of my own.  I get so wrapped up in a different world, that my own world becomes faded. In other words, an escape. I would sit in my kitchen, at the table just reading. I do all my homework and any house work I need to do, so I could have uninterrupted reading time.  When I hear my dad walk into the front door and rustle with his keys and his wallet and his jacket, I sink down into my chair, hoping to become as invisible to him as I feel when I read. “Autumn.” He calls my name. I sink further into the chair till I cannot go anywhere else.

Please don’t make me put it down.