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How to Write Boston University’s 2016-17 Essays
About Boston University
If you prefer a charming New England environment amid a bustling city often consumed by heavy snow, then you might find yourself applying to Boston University, located in the heart of what has been called America’s college town. If you decide to come study in Boston, you will never be further than a short train ride or walk from an obscene amount of historic buildings, including Fenway Park, the Charles River Esplanade, Harvard, MIT, the Boston Common (America’s first public park), and many other notable places of interests.
Placing you and approximately 16,500 other undergraduate students in the city where an extensive amount of foundational US history was made, BU will give you the opportunity to pursue just about any degree that you want, and engage in any of 500 extracurricular activities it has to offer. It has received acclaim for both its capacity to conduct scientific research and the large number of various accolades its alumni have gone on to collect (7 Nobel laureates, 23 Pulitzer Prize winners, nine Academy Award winners, and more!).
This may not come as a surprise given that BU totals over 33,000 students per academic year within its massive expanse of property. Graduation from this institution will confer upon you an alumni network of over 300,000 people spread across about 190 countries.
If attending BU is your dream, then you will have to prepare an admissions essay responding to the following prompt in the BU supplement to the Common App. Not to worry, for our BU specialists at CollegeVine have created the following guide to help you through the creation of your admissions essay for BU:
Boston University’s Essay Prompt
In no more than 250 words, please tell us why BU is a good fit for you and what specifically has led you to apply for admission.
This is a very general question that must be answered in a very concise set of words. Thus, it is advisable to compose a rough draft that will most likely exceed 250 words, including everything you want to add in your short response. Afterward, a few rounds of editing will let you condense your ideas, excise the superfluous, and submit a strong response within 250 words. Remember: it’s better to have to cut words later on than to have inadequate content for a response.
Like most admission essay prompts of this nature, the applicant is required to demonstrate that he or she has done enough self-reflection to develop genuine interest in BU. In fact, BU admissions officers are expecting that the applicant will have done research on the institution in order to point out precisely which of its aspects best cater to his or her professional, academic, and/or personal fulfillment.
Moreover, as always, it is not enough to simply praise the university; the admission officers do not gain any knowledge about you as an applicant if they receive only praise about BU. The trick to composing a successful BU supplement response is to combine some of BU’s attractive traits with some truth about yourself that usually only becomes apparent after a high-degree of introspection.
Being able to summarize yourself and convince someone else that BU is the best possible match for you requires careful diction and thought development in order to make the best use of the few precious words allowed to make your argument.
One possible approach would be to make a list of all the things about BU that appeal to you. Then, compare each item on that list to some aspect of who you are, whether that be a particular type of extracurricular formerly involved in, a desired academic focus, a carefully written worldview that is best supported by being constantly exposed to a plethora of people in a sizeable space, or something else unique to you.
Often, these types of short responses are actually much harder to compose than one might initially assume, due to the specificity of content required coupled with as much self-understanding that an 18-year-old can have. Therefore, it is imperative that you try to outline your thoughts in bulk before attempting to cram them all into 250 words.
One example of a response to this prompt could start by taking note that BU offers one of the most comprehensive examples of diversity in coursework that a student can experience. Many other institutions do not have the luxury of having such a wide array of studies, including such courses as remote sensing, aerospace engineering, hospitality administration, and lighting design. This would allow the latter part of the response to discuss how the applicant is not ready to settle into one particular subject area and wants to maximize her breadth of study.
Furthermore, while BU is able to retain its status as a liberal arts institution, students who have already made up their minds on what they wish to study can pursue degrees that are much more specific. BU’s biology and business programs have at least half a dozen majors within them!
For example, for the precocious scholar who has known for years that she wants to study the ocean and its inhabitants — as evidenced by her diving credentials and high school projects on sea cows — being able to focus on marine science in college would give her a substantial leg up on another college graduate who was not able to study the subject more in-depth than a major in general biology.
Above all else when responding to this prompt, be sure to distinguish yourself from other applicants. While a longer word count might allow for more general statements, in this case, every single topic that is mentioned in the prompt should be clearly illustrated and inapplicable to other applicants. It is indeed a difficult exercise in persuasion to have your reader remember you after only 250 words, but that is the test that BU has devised to qualify an applicant, so please remain mindful of that fact as you write.
Luckily, our Boston University essay specialists are trained in creating responses to such tricky prompts, so please do not hesitate to reach out to schedule a free consultation.
From our best to yours, we at CollegeVine wish you a successful experience as you prepare to apply to BU.