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The Requirements: 2 essays of 250 words each
Engaging others in meaningful conversations about important issues can be daunting. It can also be insightful or, unfortunately, polarizing. Linfield wants to know about a time when you interacted with someone whose beliefs were different from your own. So think back to identify a time when you had a conversation with friends, family, or even mere acquaintances about a difficult topic. Maybe you challenged your uncle when he expressed his views on the filibuster. Did you leave the conversation with a better understanding of his point of view? Were you able to effectively communicate your perspective? If you were to engage them in the conversation again, what would you do or say differently?
You don’t need to have changed anyone’s mind to impress admissions here. You just need to show that you’re not afraid to speak up about important issues and communicate with those who have different opinions than your own. Linfield College will present you with a plethora of opportunities to meet and engage with people who are very different from you, so show admissions that you’re game to have the hard talks.
For this type of prompt, brainstorming is key. Set a timer for 5-10 minutes and jot down every person who comes to mind: Hermione Granger, Aquaman, Holly Golightly, Indiana Jones… no idea is too absurd during the brainstorm! Once you have a solid list of characters you’d want to buy a toaster oven with, you’ll be in a better position to hone in on the right one. While it’s easy to list their qualities, be sure to use them as a vehicle to reveal something new about yourself to admissions. Which character would bring out in you an otherwise unknown interest in adventure, fashion, or environmentalism? Or some unknown aspect of your personal history? You could even try to put a twist on a character that might feel like a common choice—maybe you’d want to room with Hermione because of her taste in early-2000s Hollister fashion rather than her studying habits. Just make sure that the character you choose will enable you to speak more about who you are and what you care about.