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Georgetown Admissions Essay Advice

How to Write a College Admissions Essay
Personalizing Your Applications

The essay section of your application ("Personal Comments" in AMCAS) is an important item and must be utilized to sell yourself. You must gain entry to an interview and the essay is the only truly personal statement you will have prior to the interview and the only one that each member of the admissions committee will see. It is the one item most likely to distinguish you from a vast sea of applicants with credentials similar to yours. It should address points uniquely important about you. Keep it concrete, avoid generalizations. The readers will be interested in what you say as long as you stick to the topic. The topic is you, your interests, your experience and history.

DO fill this section with a well-organized and grammatical essay.

DO draw attention to anything in your application which is at variance with the usual and which might have a negative effect on an admissions committee, e.g., a poor semester. Explain it as best you can.

DO comment on any course you failed or on multiple withdrawals or pass/fail courses.

IF you are a transfer, DO give the reason for your transfer.

YOU MAY comment on extracurricular activities and employment especially if they demand much of your time and energies during the school year or if they gave important experiences leading toward a profession in medicine (dentistry).

DO comment on any weaknesses in your MCAT(DAT). Ask the pre-med advisor what constitutes a "weakness."

DO comment on time out of school or lack of continuity in your education.

IF married, especially with children, DO comment on how you plan to cope with the demands on your time and finances.

DO explain any medical or psychiatric illnesses.

YOU MAY present the origin of your interest in medicine or dentistry, what you have done to assure yourself that you have a realistic grasp of the profession and what you envision your role in it will be. Be specific and concrete.

DON'T criticize your school, department, or teachers or assume a generally negative attitude.

DON'T espouse controversial social or political causes. (There isn't enough space to do justice to your viewpoint.)

DO type neatly. Fill the space comfortably. Make it easy to read. Do not pad it with useless words. Do not use strange vocabulary. Avoid "awesome," "incredible," current cliches and "valley speak."

DO remember...

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