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The Requirements: 4-5 essays of 250 words each (optional)
Supplemental Essay Type(s): Why, Oddball
This question is as standard as they come. We’d recommend aiming to craft a few solid paragraphs, but before you start typing, set aside an hour or so to get familiar with the University of Tulsa. Dive into the school website (or better yet, visit the campus if you can!) and seek out the answers to your burning questions: What is your future major going to be like? Who are the faculty? What are your study abroad opportunities? What kinds of internships and jobs do people get? And what about all the extracurriculars? Keep notes on the most appealing aspects, and by the time you’re done, you’ll have a good base for your essay that will reflect your genuine interests. The last thing you want is to just echo the facts and figures on the admissions webpage (for one thing, admissions officers already know all of that stuff!). Be honest and try to draw connections between your interests. Does your love of math and enthusiasm for a cappella complement each other? Of course they do!
Take a look at your activity resume and visualize a day in the life in each job or activity. Admissions officers know that working at an ice cream shop demands punctuality, but do they know how buff your forearm gets after scooping and serving 500 vanilla cones in a season? Admissions knows that being a swim instructor can be exhausting, but do they know that you get a burst of energy every time one of your students floats on their own for the first time? Share with Tulsa the experiences that may go unnoticed and use this as an opportunity to show admissions a new side of you that you haven’t yet listed on your application.
Dependence can take many forms in your daily life. Your story can be as obvious as the cousins you babysit or the swimmers you supervise during lifeguard shifts at your community pool, but it can also be less cut and dry. Remember: Your friends depend on you for compassion and support. Your younger siblings depend on you to set an example and to offer guidance. One way to think about this is to ask yourself, “who would be disappointed if I didn’t show up?” Walk yourself through a day, week, or year in your life and take note of who you remember counting on you. You might surprise yourself with how integral you are in the lives of those around you. In telling this story, show admissions that you don’t take your responsibilities lightly and that you appreciate the interconnectedness of your community, in whatever way that may be!
Admissions already knows why you’re interested in attending the University of Tulsa, but they also want to know more broadly about what you’re looking forward to regarding your college experience. To ace this response, be genuine and authentically you! If you’re looking forward to exploring more of your interests in an academic environment (Classical Mythology?! Sign me up!), write about that. Maybe you’re from a small town and have never been out of state before, and you’re looking forward to meeting new people from all over the country and world. Perhaps you can’t wait to expand your horizons and take advantage of every opportunity the college experience offers you. Whatever your answer is, just be honest and go with your gut — and don’t forget to proofread before submitting!
While all of The University of Tulsa’s essay prompts are technically optional, this one is truly optional. Admissions wanted to give you one last opportunity to share anything you think they might want to know about you and your life. Explaining anything from a slip in your grades or test scores to a long absence from school is fair game in this section. For some applicants, that could mean recounting the details of some extenuating circumstances (a serious injury or family emergency). Others may need to explain how getting a D in 10th grade biology was an academic wake-up call, and describe the steps they took to turn their grades around. If you decide to respond to this prompt, just remember to focus on your triumphs rather than setbacks!