Based on my tentative college list of 12 universities (including three in-state public schools), I have 49 essays to write. Forty. Nine. Yes, I just panicked a little too.
You may think this is ludicrous, but it is far from it. If you are looking at the same types of colleges that I am thinking of, then you are probably floating in the 30+ essay zone. You may think that you are exempt from this at less competitive colleges, but those are also culprits. Between “optional” essays which are never optional, department specific essays for majors, and competitive honors programs which tend to have mini college applications of their own (looking at you, UT Austin), you can quickly become knee deep in prompts, paragraphs, and punctuations.
Tangent alert (do not read if you don’t want to see my squirrel moment): now that I think of it, state schools are 100% the worst offenders of this. Think about it: the ApplyTexas system has three essays, two of which are required, one “optional”, but barely (especially if you’re not auto-admit), and competitive schools like TAMU or UT Austin often require individual essays for some different degree programs, as well as several short and longer essays for their super-competitive honors programs. The University of California system is not that much better, looking for FOUR different essays; they also have those major things. That’s right off the top of my head, but yeah. State schools be wildin’, y’all.
So, like any other panicked high schooler who is notorious for procrastination, I started right away. Yes, I just mentioned I am a horrible procrastinator- why would I get started? Because I don’t want to look like this the night before my college applications are due:
I am just terrified of ending up like that- so I’m not. As of now, in my Google Drive, I have about 25ish different drafts of essays. Some are for my Common App, some are for my supplements, and everything in between. My supplements for my dream school have been through multiple drafts already; one school’s big supplemental essay is complete; my pre-emptive Common App essay is in final draft format, and I have four rough drafts lined up behind it if and when I decide it’s not good enough. And it’s the third day of summer vacation prior to senior year. I may seem on top of things, but do not mistake my productivity as calm, or any derivative of collectedness. I am anything but.
So yeah, I’m a little nuts. But if you want to find yourself at 11:04 pm writing 47 out of 49 with a midnight deadline, be my guest.
Good thing is, if you’re reading this, you have just joined the team as future college essay editors! Get excited.
Until next time,