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The Requirements: 3 essays of 250 words
Admissions wants to know that you’ll fit right in on campus, that you’re the type of student who cares about enrichment, integrity, community, and altruism. So, take this opportunity to tell a story about yourself that connects to one of Catawba’s ideals. Maybe you want to write about a subject you could talk about for hours, a leader you admire who you hope to emulate, a community that is meaningful to you, or a volunteer project that made a profound impact on you. (The options are really endless!) Whatever you choose to share, make sure your response speaks to the kind of community member you’ll be on campus and in the future, perhaps as an alum.
Now is the time to get nerdy. This prompt is not only about your intellectual curiosity, but also your ambitions for the future. There are so many reasons to pursue a degree in Mathematical Finance: because you’ve always wanted to apply your interest in math to the real world, or because you’re gunning for a career in bank regulation, or even because you hope to make policy changes one day. No one reason is more or less valid than another, so first and foremost, be true to your motivations. What makes Catawba the ideal place to pursue your higher education? How will their offerings and opportunities help you reach your goals? And if you’re going in undecided, take some time to explore Catawba’s academic offerings and choose a few to highlight in your response. Admissions doesn’t expect you to have your whole life figured out just yet, but they do expect you to put time and energy into your response.
In short, this is an essay about the aspects of your life and experience that distinguish you from your peers. For some applicants, the answer might be obvious: you might have been the only one at your school with a certain background, belief system, or inherited skill set. But whether this prompt seems like it was made for you or just a total head-scratcher, we encourage you to dig a little deeper than your first thought. What about your history, experiences, perspectives, or talents might be worth highlighting for an admissions officer? And how can the experience, perspective, or talent you choose enrich the learning environment at Catawba?
Maybe you were raised on a secluded farm and developed a strong work ethic at a young age as you helped your parents tend to the fields. Perhaps you will be a natural leader in group projects and take initiative in the many clubs you’d like to join. No matter your topic, sure to connect your personal story to a future vision of yourself at Catawba. The most important thing to remember for this prompt is that your experience, perspective, or talent is dynamic and specific to you and who you are, and no one else.