a year ago
Admissions Advice

Essay question- should I discuss my poor(er than ideal for schools I'm looking at) grades?

Just made another more general post about my GPA- but I've got a more specific question regarding my essay. As I was writing, the idea popped into my head that I could base my essay around the following concept: I've always thought I knew what my life would look like, but my grades made me anxious and unsure.

Alternatively, here's the other concept that came to mind- something to do with how I used to be known as a top student, how my peers still think of me that way, adults say I seem like I would be a good student, but how I'm really not and the pressure that comes with that.

It seems foolish, now that I think it through, but I know some of you on here are essay wizards and might be able to whip these raw ideas into a form that would serve me well.



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2 answers

Accepted Answer
a year ago

Honestly, I do not think this is a good topic. If you have some strong, impressive, and genuine personal qualities, you should write about that not how you struggled and continue to struggle to keep appearances. This puts you in a negative light as if you are warning the better colleges that if they accept you, there is a good chance that you may not live up to their expectations. Rather than defending your track record, you should write about some special about yourself or something memorable you did in your life so the readers will know you are more than your transcript. The alternative idea is just as bad for the same reasons.

If you are selling a car, you never want to come out and tell the buyer in the first 5 minutes all the things you know that are terrible about the car. Then the buyer will think that there are even more things wrong with the car than you are disclosing and lowball you a bad price. Marketing 101 tells you to highlight all the positives and sell the product on all the good things the consumer wants to hear about.

Remember, the college admissions process is hyper-competitive. It's not the therapist's sofa where you are supposed to open up about your feelings and problems being a 17-year-old. You can save those thoughts for your friends, not the college admissions team.

Good luck.

a year ago[edited]

I don't think you should worry about it, because later in life (like at work) those who will take you to work will not look at you're grades but what you represent, if you are smart enough to answer their questions and generally good at the thing you applied for then I am sure they will take you without college, I, for example, have been working for two years and now I get a good salary (besides I will finish college soon) but I don't really need this license because I did it only because my parents were afraid I would be unemployed.

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