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 The Common Application Essay

Common App Essay

There is no more enjoyable and gratifying part of the process for me than brainstorming Common Application essay stories. Bouncing ideas around, discovering who an applicant really is through their life experiences is always fertile territory for a memorable essay. When I hear the germ of a great idea, I know we are on our way. Together we revise, revise, revise until we reach a final draft – there is no limit to the number of consultations and drafts. But I am always mindful that while tinkering is essential, too much of it can destroy the essence and impact of a compelling and dynamic Common Application essay.

The Process:

  • Via telephone, we brainstorm Common Application essay ideas. This in-depth interview/ brainstorm session (or sessions) is where we find a story both of us believe in. Once we discover their story, I teach them how to create a structure for the essay, which the applicant will use to write a first draft.
  • We then discuss the first draft, identifying ways to make it stronger. The applicant then uses our notes and suggestions to write a further draft.
  • Next up is another review, before turning that draft into a final one.



of our students were accepted to their first-choice school!

Cara D.
University of Chicago
Class of 2024

William R.
Class of 2024

Clair K.
Class of 2024

Emily S.
Class of 2024

Grace T.
University of Chicago
Class of 2024

Andrew M.
University of Pennsylvania
Class of 2024

Conor N.
Class of 2024

Emma J.
Class of 2024

Emily Y.
John Hopkins
Class of 2024

Alex D.
Class of 2024

Danielle R.
University of Chicago
Class of 2024

Nikita W.
Georgia Tech
Class of 2024

Claudia C.
Columbia University
Class of 2024

Arielle L.
Class of 2024

Chris R.
Carnegie Mellon
Class of 2024

Gina B.
Rice University
Class of 2024

Anson F.
Class of 2024

Olivia P.
Harvey Mudd
Class of 2024

Nicole F.
Class of 2024

Maggie K.
Class of 2024

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