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College of William & Mary 2018-19 Supplemental Essay Prompt Guide

Regular Decision: 

College of William & Mary 2018-19 Application Essay Question Explanations

The Requirements: 1 essay of 500 words or less

Supplemental Essay Type(s): Topic of your choice

Why hello, you lucky devils. William & Mary only has one supplemental essay! And it’s optional! Actually, the second part is kind of a lie. William & Mary may refer to this essay as an “optional opportunity,” but take a closer look. The prompt is all about the things that make you stand out — and there is no way a bare minimum application is going to stand out to admissions. So, buckle up. You’ve got one more 500-worder to go.

Beyond your impressive academic credentials and extracurricular accomplishments, what else makes you unique and colorful? We know nobody fits neatly into 500 words or less, but you can provide us with some suggestion of the type of person you are. Anything goes! Inspire us, impress us, or just make us laugh. Think of this optional opportunity as show and tell by proxy and with an attitude.

In short, this prompt is asking you to do what we would have told you to do anyway: reveal something that doesn’t appear anywhere else on your application. Although it may seem totally open-ended, this prompt includes a few keywords that should help guide your thinking. The College of William & Mary doesn’t want to know just any random fact about you. They have specifically asked about what makes you different, and they have invited you to have fun. So, get personal! What are your favorite funny stories about your life? You can talk about chess games with your grandma, lake trips with your friends, or the time you thought you could time travel. Pick a fun story or anecdote that says something concrete about your spirit, strengths, resilience, or character.

If something hasn’t already sprung to mind, you should set aside about an hour for a solid brainstorm sesh. Use whichever technique feels most natural to you and see where it leads. You’d be surprised by the gems you can uncover when you take some of the pressure off and give your mind a little space to play.

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