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The Requirements: 1 essay of 300 words
Admissions wants to know about a time when your beliefs were challenged and you grew as a result of the experience. Maybe you were made aware of a bias you didn’t know you had or, perhaps, you experienced something powerful that altered your worldview. This first option may be the most challenging of the three prompts because it requires a great deal of self-awareness and introspection. A successful essay will showcase your humility, intelligence, and adaptability. Maybe you volunteered at a shelter with your church youth group and realized there are many more shades to the unhoused epidemic than you had previously thought. Perhaps your best friend’s mom went through cancer treatments last year and you stepped in to tutor them to get their grades back up, upending your previous dichotomy of “good” and “bad” students. How did your perspective change? What did you learn about yourself, your peers, or the world? Don’t limit yourself to stories about conflict and don’t worry about being right or wrong. The most interesting essays will focus on small, personal moments that have shaped the way you see the world.
This prompt is perfect for the activists among you; if you have already taken part in demonstrations, protests, canvassing, or other large-scale activism, great! For those of you who haven’t, but still feel called to this prompt, think about the word “potential.” What aspects of your personality, values, or experience would prime you to be actively antiracist at CC? Perhaps you act in allyship every time you challenge microaggressions when they arise in your predominantly white community. Maybe you come from a multiracial family and have been struck by your effortless code-switching, prompting you to think more deeply about race in America and how you can effect positive change. Whether you write about activism, challenging someone’s outdated opinions, or personal introspection, make sure you do some research on CC’s commitment to antiracism and tailor your response to demonstrate how you will further their agenda on campus.
This essay is a combination of a Why and a Community Essay. CC’s unique Block Plan allows students to focus on one course at a time rather than taking many simultaneous classes per semester. This prompt is asking you to explore exactly how this curriculum—among CC’s many other assets—will benefit you specifically. Make sure you research the Block Plan on the school’s website to see how you would best take advantage of its possibilities. Then think about how your personal experiences, with a community you belong to specifically, will make you particularly poised to benefit from the Block Plan. Maybe you did a summer internship at a physics lab with fellow STEM students, which ignited your passion for quantum mechanics, and you can’t wait to dive into this with all your focus. Perhaps your Tae Kwon Do community taught you a love of martial arts, culture, and Korean language, and CC’s Block Plan will empower you to design your own interdisciplinary course of study across these fields. The community you choose to write about can be anything—your family, a sports team, a school club, a friend group, a nationality—the choice is yours! Just make sure you tell a specific, personal story that illustrates how your experiences with this group relate to your future studies at CC.