11 months ago
Admissions Advice

Can I write my personal essay about a divorce that affected me throughout my life?

Highschool sophomore preparing for college,hey Mr/Mrs I was born and raised in Africa and I've been brought up by my father all through my life the question of not having a mother at home has always affected me do you think I should write it for my college essay

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1 answer

11 months ago

[Avoiding my personal opinion, but a universal statement]: You can write your personal essay topic on anything!! From as little as an epiphanic moment where you watched leaves fall from an oak and related it you life in someway TO something as complex and serious as losing your home, experiencing the passing of a loved one, or, in your case, a divorce. Most people who don’t have those “life-defining” type moments use the former; meanwhile, those who do have some significant impact on their life they’d like to explain use the latter.

With that being said, it absolutely doesn’t matter what an essay topic is about...but the greater question implanted within the personal essay prompts (and presumably in your admissions readers’ minds) is: “Does this exemplify personal growth? Does it present your personality in a good light? Does it show the ‘adcoms’ something extraordinary or unique about you? And intuitively, can your write?”

These questions are considered to be “essential elements” of your personal statement. As long as you input them into the essay in any poetic, fluent, literary-like way, then any topic can be a good topic. If you were to read some examples of personal essays, you’ll notice that the best are the most “memorable”. Now consider this for a moment—what constitutes something as memorable?—Did you learn something from the essay, is the essay well structured and written personally, does it express emotion and is it “touching”, and lastly does it show growth in a unique way? Any of these would make for a good essay.

For further guidance of where to direct your writing, I suggest the following sources:

Guides and Outlines: (https://www.princetonreview.com/college-advice/college-essay), (https://www.princetonreview.com/college-advice/application-essay-topics), (https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/resumes-cover-letters/how-to-write-a-personal-statement)

Examples: (https://www.collegeessayguy.com/blog/personal-statement-examples), (https://blog.collegevine.com/common-app-essay-examples/)

Errors and Mistakes to avoid: (https://ingeniusprep.com/blog/worst-personal-statement-topics/) Don’t fall into these traps!!

Bottom-line: as long as the essay is personal, emotional, and shows growth, you can write anything!


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