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Writing the Stanford 'What is Meaningful to You' Essay

Hey guys, I'm having a bit of trouble figuring out how to approach the 'What is meaningful to you and why?' essay for Stanford. Any ideas or examples to get me started and help me think about what I should write about?

6 months ago

Hi there! Overcoming writer's block can be tough, especially when you're trying to express something meaningful in a college essay. Remember to keep it personal and authentic, as that's what the admissions officers are looking for. Let me provide a few tips and prompts to help you brainstorm.

1. Consider your values: Reflect on the core values that have shaped you and your actions. What's important to you, and why? This could be anything from family and community to intellectual curiosity or social justice. Describe any experiences, events, or people that have helped you develop these values.

2. Focus on a specific anecdote: Instead of writing about a general theme or value, you can hone in on a specific story or incident that conveys meaning in your life. The idea is to showcase a moment that you've learned from or that has played a pivotal role in your personal growth. Make sure the anecdote highlights your personality and demonstrates why the topic is meaningful to you.

3. Reflect on personal growth: Think about times in your life when you've faced challenges or setbacks and how you've grown from those experiences. Describe the process of overcoming obstacles and how it has shaped you as a person. Be candid and introspective while showing the significance of the experience.

4. Showcase your passions or hobbies: Share what you genuinely love doing outside of school or work. How does this activity connect to your personal values or aspirations? Tell a story that illustrates your dedication and enthusiasm for your passion.

For instance, imagine that you've always been a strong advocate for the environment and have been involved in various initiatives towards protecting it. You could write about one of the projects or campaigns that you spearheaded, focusing on the emotions you felt, the challenges you faced, and the impact you made. Show your dedication and explain why it's important for you to contribute to a greener world.

To learn more about Stanford's prompts, read this blog post: https://blog.collegevine.com/how-to-write-the-stanford-university-essays/

Remember, the key is to be genuine, personal, and engaging. Try to stay away from clichés or generic statements, and focus on what truly makes the topic meaningful to you. Good luck!

6 months ago

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