The strong essay below was written in response to the application to Duke University's Trinity College.
The guidelines for the optional supplemental essay ask, "If you are applying to Trinity College of Arts and Sciences, please discuss why you consider Duke a good match for you.
You're not being asked to explain how Admissions officers can't help but feel that Oberlin is a great match for this applicant.
She knows the school well, and her interests and goals line up perfectly with Oberlin's strengths.
Thus, it's tempting to dash off a generic and vague piece that can be used at multiple schools, resulting in a weak essay.
I visited 18 colleges over the past year, yet Oberlin is the one place that most spoke to my interests.The Trinity College liberal arts curriculum also reflects this unique pairing of the modern South and the global past.For example, I am considering a major in history, and am very interested in the combination of geographic and thematic areas of study offered by Duke’s history program.Also, my high school experience was greatly enriched by the diversity of the student body, and I am impressed by Oberlin’s rich history and its current efforts connected to inclusiveness and equality.To say the least, I’d be proud to say I attended the first coeducational college in the country.It’s an amazing space and the students I chatted with spoke highly of their professors.I became truly interested in issues of sustainability during my volunteer work in the Hudson River Valley, and everything I’ve learned about Oberlin makes it seem the ideal place for me to continue exploring and building upon those interests.I’m drawn to a program that supports the move from classroom learning to creative hands-on, real-world applications.Finally, as the rest of my application clearly demonstrates, music is an important part of my life.I am also impressed by Oberlin’s Creativity and Leadership Project.I’ve been a bit of an entrepreneur ever since second grade when I made a dollar producing and performing The Runaway Bunny for my extended family.