Georgetown University Essay Writing Tips: Learn How to Write a Great Supplementary Essay!
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Students hoping to get a place at the prestigious Georgetown University in Washing DC are usually required to submit a supplementary essay as part of the application process. Ranked as the USA's 20th best private research institution, the considerable emphasis on Jesuit-type values such as operating in an intellectually open manner, the promotion of spiritual, ethical and intercultural understanding, and the serving of others owes much to the fact that Georgetown is a Roman Catholic-founded seat of learning. Above all, writing a Georgetown university essay of application is a task that requires careful planning since this is a very selective institution. For example, only 12.9% of early applications and 16.6% of regular applicants in the year 2017 were accepted.
Four separate and distinctive schools make up Georgetown University with each one having its own unique focus:
- Georgetown College
- McDonough School of Business: This school offers programs in finance, business, and other subjects related to these disciplines to undergraduate students.
- School of Nursing and Health Studies: This school specializes in nursing, health, and related sciences.
- Walsh School of Foreign Service: The aim of this school is preparing students for future careers in politics, diplomacy, foreign services, and international relations.
Georgetown University does not use the Common Application system, and, therefore, each applicant is required to fill out the application form provided on the university's website, write a special Georgetown university essay directed at their chosen school, and provide their response to two quite general application prompts. Here are the university's prompts for the school year 2019 to 2020:
Prompts for All Applications to Georgetown University
Prompt Number One: Discuss in brief terms a summer or school activity you were very involved in (half page in single-spacing or, depending on the size of font, around 300 to 400 words).
Prompt Number Two: Since the community at Georgetown is quite diverse, members of the Admissions Board would love to learn about you in words of your own choosing. Write a short Georgetown university essay, either of a creative or personal nature, in which you describe yourself as best you can (one page in single spacing or, depending on the size of font, around 300 to 400 words).
Prompts Specific to Georgetown University
Georgetown College: Describe what you think being educated means with specific reference to your own definition. How do you think your aim might be achieved at Georgetown College? (Students applying to the Mathematics and Sciences Faculty or to the Languages and Linguistics Faculty are asked to address the course they have chosen).
McDonough School of Business: This school is an international leader when it comes to providing graduate students with vital analytical, ethical, financial and international perspectives. Say what has motivated you to apply for business studies here.
School of Nursing and Health Studies: What factors have had a bearing on your particular interest in health and the provision of healthcare? Focus specifically on your chosen major in your response (e.g., Nursing, Global Healthcare, Policy and Management of Healthcare Provision, or Human Science). Walsh School of Foreign Service:Choose a current issue of global importance and discuss it in brief terms; say why you think this issue is especially important and suggest a way it could be dealt with.
Georgetown University: Discuss in brief terms a summer or school activity you were very involved in.
The best strategy for developing your response to this first prompt is deciding which study program or activity best reflects your values and interests. Instead of choosing the organization or club you have dedicated most of your time to or some activity that you believe would impress the university's admissions committee, take a little time to select something that you find inspirational. It is impossible to predict which particular activity is likely to appeal most to an admissions board so the best option is to choose something that you feel really passionately about and demonstrate the reasons to your readers.
Some Additional Tips
If, in your Georgetown university application essay, you choose to describe and/or discuss a summer holiday program, take great care with the one you choose and the way you present it.
While, for instance, you may have found your participation in a paid program at a college or university campus or the weeks you spent travelling around Europe extremely enriching, it is very easy to start running short of things to talk about and to start depending on clichéd statements. Most likely you will be up against numerous other candidates with the same type of experiences and this can make it a lot harder to persuade an admissions committee about the uniqueness of your activity and how it reflects your particular in interests.
Additionally, it is more difficult to support the idea that you have involved yourself to a very significant extent in a one-off summer holiday experience.
However, showing that you have worked during a number of consecutive summers as a counselor or have taken part in community projects with some organization is certainly indicative of a high level of commitment to that activity.
Where a prompt requires you to list the activity you have had most involvement with, this is not absolutely mean it refers to the amount of hours you have devoted to it.
For instance, you might have played some musical instrument and given performances for up to ten years. Simultaneously, it may be that you worked in a junior capacity on your school's newsletter, written numerous articles for each monthly edition, and developed a completely new section to draw attention to students' out-of-school achievements.
While the number of hours might suggest that more of your time was spent on music, it is clear in this particular example that the time you spent reporting and writing required more initiative, even though you spent less time on it.
Although it would be wonderful if your selected activity had some direct link with the major you have chosen, you need not worry unduly about choosing an activity you think seems more relevant to your intended field of study.
With these Georgetown university essay prompts for 2020, the admissions committee wants to understand your dedication, your acquired skills, your leadership and/or team player capability, and what you are passionate about. If it is the case, for example, that you can show you are committed to teaching piano to young children and if your excitement and creativity in this regard shines through, you are showing the admissions committee you have skills that are transferable and that you will approach college life with similar enthusiasm.
It is best not to try second-guessing what an admissions committee might or might not want to read. Choose the activity that excites you the most - one you are always talking to family and friends about - and describe in your essay why this is important.
Since the community at Georgetown is quite diverse, members of the Admissions Board would love to learn about you in words of your own choosing. Write a short Georgetown university essay, either of a creative or personal nature, in which you describe yourself as best you can.
Even though Georgetown University does not accept Common Applications, this second prompt is really asking the same questions as the prompts in the year 2019-2020 Common Application. Your response here is a chance for the admissions committee to become acquainted with you and the person you are. From what you write, readers want to understand who you really are, what values you live by, what makes you get up each morning and drives you through the day - i.e. what is unique about you. In this case, the best approach may be to copy the personal statement from your common application.
Take note that the emphasis in this prompt is diversity and its importance. Irrespective of whether you use your Common Application essay or not, be sure to highlight the unique contribution you will make to the community at Georgetown in your essay. Do bear in mind that discussing diversity does not absolutely mean membership of a particular religion or ethnic group, a belief that a lot of students are initially prone to gravitating towards. If, for instance, you have spent a lot of time traveling, you could mention that exploring new places is an integral part of your character and personality. If all your spare time is devoted to creating theatrical sets for your school's performances, you could draw attention to your artistic talents and the fact you enjoy teamwork.
Remember, the committee you are addressing will have countless applications to choose from and many of the candidates will be similar to you in terms of their academic achievements, scores, and grades. The real key to succeeding in your response to this prompt is to make yourself memorable to your readers.
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Prompts for Georgetown College
Describe what you think being educated means with specific reference to your own definition. How do you think your aim might be achieved at Georgetown College? (Students applying to the Mathematics and Sciences Faculty or to the Languages and Linguistics Faculty are asked to address the course they have chosen).
When answering this prompt, you should emphasize your education and career goals in your essay and say why the perfect place to achieve these is Georgetown. Make sure you make reference to the special Jesuit values at Georgetown and the university's other unique characteristics. If, for instance, you hope to major in politics, talk about your desire to improve the lives of other people and link this to Georgetown's principle for serving and/or helping others.
With regards to this particular prompt, another thing that is important is establishing the meaning of education for you. Define this in the early part of your essay before providing real-life examples. Getting educated can have several meanings and an open-ended question like this is an opportunity for you to describe education in a manner that reflects and draws attention to your unique life experiences.
You may want to talk about the fact that, to you, education means widening your horizons outside the classroom by visiting events in your local town, e.g., movies, art exhibitions, and so on. Your definition of education may center on being open to new perspectives and ideas by engaging with people whose viewpoints and opinions are different to your own. It may be that you see education as the process of learning other languages so that you can discover more about different beliefs and cultures. However, irrespective of the stance you take, make sure you directly address your view of education and its explicit meaning for you in the introductory section of your essay.
Try not to put your sole focus on the advantages of DC to the detriment of the unique opportunities at Georgetown. In the event you decide to talk about the National Archives and the numerous resources it offers, focus your discussion on how being a student at Georgetown will have you unprecedented access to these. Any resident or tourist can visit a museum but speaking to a museum specialist and observing some conservation activity or process is something only a Georgetown student has the chance to do!
Do not forget that being asked what education means for you is not an exclusive reference to attendance at classes. The primary difference between an average and an outstanding response means highlighting the outside-classroom opportunities afforded to Georgetown students.
Prompts for the McDonough School of Business
This school is an international leader when it comes to providing graduate students with vital analytical, ethical, financial and international perspectives. Say what has motivated you to apply for business studies here.
You should not regard this essay as just another piece of writing on “why choose business school.” Take note of how the emphasis in the question is on an “international” perspective and a reference to values such as ethics. As previously mentioned, the identity at Georgetown is based in the university's Jesuit principles, which are manifest in every academic program it offers. While you are writing your essay these keywords should be kept foremost in your mind. When addressing this essay prompt, draw attention to specific perspective this program endeavors to provide - show you appreciate the many opportunities that it will present to you.
Below are some ideas for your response:
- If you are attracted by the focus this school places on ethics, then you might want to talk about how passionately you feel about the development of sustainable practices in business and connect this to a business in your local community that has a model you especially like. If it is the case you have worked at any time for a small scale business or if you have friends or family who own a small company, you could use this to demonstrate your interest in sustainability.
- If it is the global or international approach of the McDonough School that first attracted you to this place, then you could discuss how you are interested in business models that differ from those common in the USA. If, for example, you find the initiatives that India is taking to combat poverty in the country's rural areas, this essay is a good place to discuss that. Make sure you link your discussion to the school's programs and the opportunities it offers. If, for instance, the school offers a program on tackling poverty and you are especially keen to get a place on this, then mention it!
- Harnessing the fact that Georgetown is advantageously located in DC is a good way of helping to justify your desire to study business here. If you are particularly interested in fiscal policy or the way entrepreneurs and government interact, you could mention the internship and job opportunities that this excellent location has to offer as well as potential access to the many experts who leave the private and public sectors with several years' experience and take up teaching positions at Georgetown.
Prompts for the School of Nursing and Health Studies
What factors have had a bearing on your particular interest in health and the provision of healthcare? Focus specifically on your chosen major in your response (e.g., Nursing, Global Healthcare, Policy and Management of Healthcare Provision, or Human Science).
There is an opportunity in this prompt to elaborate on or explain why you are electing to study health sciences. Make absolutely sure you research your chosen major before starting to write your essay in order to understand what distinguishes it from others and to show your understanding to the admissions committee.
For instance, majors in policy and healthcare management are very much focused on the policy aspects of this sector, understanding how policy is made, learning who the main stakeholders are, and having a firm grasp of the industry processes involved in improving and managing healthcare. Therefore, when applying to major in healthcare, you need to draw attention to the managerial and legislative elements of this sector instead of just discussion your desire to look after the patients who may come your way. More than anything, this prompt is a chance for reflecting upon and narrowing down your academic interests.
As is the case with almost every essay aimed at a specific school, it is important that what you write makes you stand out from other candidates. Most likely, they will also be able to talk about having worked in laboratories and/or volunteered at a hospital. Hence, it is essential you find a focus or angle that draws attention to your special approach and perspective.
Keep reading for more ideas:
- If it is the case you have suffered a chronic or serious illness, it may be that you want to refer to your unique experiences in your essay as a means of illustrating why the health sector is of specific interest to you. Although writing about a serious illness can be a very personal or emotive topic to cover in an essay and extremely challenging, it is possible to focus on how this created a passion within you to help others or to carry out some research - this is one way of portraying your academic achievements in a relevant context.
- In the event a member of your family already works in healthcare, you may want to talk about how you first came into contact with this field through someone you love. Maybe your doctor aunt has devoted many hours to highlighting inefficiencies in how larger hospitals are currently managed. You may want to reminisce on her conversations as a way of introducing your interest in healthcare and possibly list a few projects you would like to work on in your future career to solve problems you have heard about.
- If it is the case you have spent many hours after school or during the summer working as a volunteer in a hospital or some other medical institution, you could recount an anecdote that describes a particular experience as a way of underlining why you are interested in the health industry. Remember that a lot of other applicants are likely to have written similar things in their resumes. Your just is to attempt to identify an angle that exemplifies your unique experience(s).
At what particular moment did it dawn on you that you wanted to start studying health? What was it you were doing when this realization struck you? Did a particular event or conversation lead to your decision? It may be that you worked as a volunteer in a caregiving center or hospital for children and time spent with a special child made you realize you derived great fulfillment from caring for others. Maybe it was while you were working on a biology-based research project that you developed a fascination for genetic illnesses and this prompted you to look for a summer holiday internship in a laboratory. Regardless of the angle you decide on, make sure you study the questions in the prompt when preparing to write and do your best to choose an anecdote that reveals your unique personality.
As you begin writing your essay, bear in mind that your primary goal is explaining to the admissions committee why you would not be able to accomplish your goals if you were to study a different field. Stay focused on the features of the program that make Georgetown stand out from other academic institutions and make a link with your own experiences to enable your readers to see the human side of you.
Prompts for the Walsh School of Foreign Service
Choose a current issue of global importance and discuss it in brief terms; say why you think this issue is especially important and suggest a way it could be dealt with.
It is expected that anyone applying to this school is conversant with international affairs. Your application essay is a great chance to show how passionate you are about issues that are currently important and that you understand them. Choosing an essay prompt for Georgetown's School of Foreign Service should be done with care and it is very important you select one that is quite unique and has a bearing on your experiences and interests. It is best not to try writing about finding a solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict since this topic is currently a very hot one. Try and think of one that is unique to you, whether this means something you have extensively researched or something that has personal meaning for you.
This is not merely a MUN-type essay that suggests a possible solution to a far-off problem that you are totally disconnected from. The admissions committee will want to gain an understanding of why you feel strongly about the issue you have chosen and the best way to get this across is by relating personal stories and anecdotes.
Below are a few examples of good responses:
- In the event you have raised money for a charitable organization that finances education for needy children, you could link your experience of this to the bigger issue of disparities in education or income. Devote a paragraph to talking about how you first became interested in this particular issue and flesh it out the topic with a more detailed analysis of it.
- Perhaps you have attended classes or participated in a project that gave you exposure to various global issues that now explain your interest in this topic. Even if you no direct knowledge or experience of a particular issue, you could try finding ways of connecting it in some way to your life.
- If you feel passionately that more women should participate in politics, then you might want to talk about the first time you voted and draw attention to how your interest was aroused by the absence of female names on the ballot. Or it may be you want to mention how there are too few female political role models and that struck a chord with you when you were still a child.
- Even in the event you cannot draw on any extracurricular or scholarly experience that you can connect to current affairs, you can still personally connect yourself to this topic in other ways. For example, if you have read a book or watched a movie concerning a global issue of great significance and one that still arouses curiosity in you, this could be your connection! Just ensure the admissions committee can see why you are interested in this particular topic and that they can see your intellectual passion and curiosity.
Regardless of which topic you decide on, just remember that what you write should be thoroughly researched. While citations may not be necessary, you do need to be familiar with your chosen issue, anything that has been done to resolve or resist it, and the main players involved. This application essay is an opportunity for you to showcase your ability to think in an analytical manner and your research skills. Remember also to end your essay with a policy recommendation - it does not have to be very long but it should be appropriate, realistic, and accurate.
The fact that the Common Application system is not used by Georgetown is mainly because this university wants to attract only those students who are sufficiently dedicated to this institution and its special values that they are prepared to complete separate applications in order to be considered. While completing your Georgetown application, keep the unique values of this university in mind and why you were first attracted to Georgetown when compiling your college list. Give careful thought to the reasons why you are applying, conduct sufficient, and ask for assistance if or when you need it!