By now, you've likely read or seen or heard the news about one Kwasi Enin of Long Island, who achieved the dubious distinction of earning acceptance to eight out of the possible eight Ivy League universities to which he applied. Poor kid--he's going to have to turn seven of them down. I tend to agree that the attention given to this story is a bit ridiculous and that the glorification of the most highly selective schools (where acceptance for even the most qualified student can be a total crapshoot) is not the healthiest message to celebrate. Even Kwasi ackowledged that applying to all eight Ivies--whether he was truly interested in attending every one or not--was his father's idea, just to see if he could do it.
However, I am happy to see that his successful essay is making the rounds. Despte the subtle hints of humblebrag, it's pretty good--well-structured and clear. He writes about his love of music, and how it "has become the spark of my intellectual curiosity." In an interview, he credits that intangible drive as the difference-maker:
Enin ranks in the top 2% of his class and aced 11 advanced placement classes. The son of two nurses, he also volunteers in Stony Brook University Hospital’s radiology department. But he said he believes what truly sets him apart is his passion.
So, yeah. Whether applying to the Ivy League (you know, as a whole) or the school that's right for you, the essay is a big deal.
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