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University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) 2018-19 Supplemental Essay Prompt Guide

Regular Decision: 

University of Pennsylvania 2018-19 Application Essay Question Explanations 

The Requirements: 1 essay of 400-650 words

Supplemental Essay Type(s): Why

How will you explore your intellectual and academic interests at the University of Pennsylvania? Please answer this question given the specific undergraduate school to which you are applying. (400-650 words)

*Students applying to Digital Media Design and Computer & Cognitive Science should address both the specialized program and single-degree choice in their response. For students applying to the other coordinated dual-degree and specialized programs, please answer this question in regards to your single-degree school choice; your interest in the coordinated dual-degree or specialized program may be addressed through the program-specific essay.

You’ve probably seen this before: the why essay. Clocking in between 400 and 650 words, UPenn’s take on this classic prompt is on the longer side. There’s only one thing to do, the same thing we always tell you to do: research, research, research. Set aside some quality time to get up close and personal with UPenn’s website (or campus if you’re able to visit) and take some detailed notes on everything that appeals to you. Go deep. Read some descriptions of the classes you will take in your major and Google the professors you will be learning from. Think about telling a story that illustrates your path to UPenn: how do its’ offerings align with your own interests and goals? You could, alternatively, paint an aspirational picture of what you’d be like on campus. Any way you slice it, you should be focusing on “intellectual and academic interests” related to the undergraduate school to which you’re applying. Show admissions that UPenn the ideal fit for you and your academic goals. 

Please note: the information below relates to last year's essay prompts. We are going to update this guide with the prompts for 2021-22 as soon as they become available. Check back soon!
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