Every year it happens. I dread it. I can’t stop it, they can’t stop themselves. But when I read the revisions my heart sinks and I know it to be a fact. An overzealous (Well intentioned I’m sure!) parent has not just reviewed and tenderly edited, but they have revised their child’s college essay into something it’s not; their child’s. And be 100% sure that every college admissions counselor out there knows it. Not just suspects, they know it. They are doing their child no favor, on the contrary.
I always, always, always say to my families that the college essay is unlike any piece of writing that they have written. It’s conversational, it’s in THE STUDENT’S voice, it’s about them, it’s authentic and typically about the most mundane topic imaginable. But it’s not about the topic, it’s about the story.
If you are either a parent of a senior in high school or of a child in high school, and for that matter, a parent of any age child, I implore you to read the attached NY Times article that states succinctly and to the point what a college essay is, and what it is not. Take it to heart, remember it and most importantly, apply these sentiments to your child’s college essay.