How to Write the Clark University Supplement Essay 2017-2018
Founded in 1887 in Worcester, Massachusetts, Clark University is a liberal-arts based research university renowned for its immersive educational experience, impactful research, and connected community. Ranked #16 by Forbes in “America’s Most Entrepreneurial Universities,” and #16 by the Princeton Review in “Top Schools For Making an Impact,” Clark University has built a reputation as a place that transforms intellectual daringness into impactful real-world solutions.
This past year, Clark accepted 55% of its 7,914 applicants through the Common Application. (Check out our post on how to write the Common App essays.)
If you’ve set your sights on Clark University, our CollegeVine team is here to guide you through their application essay prompt!
Clark University Application Essay Prompt
Please briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities or work experiences. (Response required in 250 words)
So you might be wondering, where do I begin?
Here are a few tips on how to approach this prompt:
- Picking a Topic – Your main objective should be to convey a memorable extracurricular or work experience that highlights a positive facet of your personality. Be careful not to fall into the trap of writing about an activity just because the number of awards you received is the highest or the leadership position you reached sounds the most impressive compared to your other activities. For essays like this one, passion > prestige. Think about endeavors that spark your intellectual or artistic curiosity, that reflect your career-related or personal ambitions, or that have profoundly impacted your mindset or development. Your goal is to be genuine in how you articulate why this experience matters to you, and highlight your best traits that are demonstrated through your involvement and contributions to this activity. Here are some examples:
a. Founding a club, program, or organization: This demonstrates your initiative and ambition, as well as a high level of commitment in the area. One good way to communicate your passion for the purpose of your organization is through a personal anecdote that chronicles the difficulties you encountered while attempting to set up the program, whether it be the lack of interested sponsors or the lack of funds available and the steps you took to resolve those issues. You will want to stay away from summarizing what the activity is. For example, if you founded a volunteer peer-tutoring program in your community, you could mention your inspiration for starting the project, discuss meaningful interactions you had with students, or explain how you resolved a major conflict between a tutor and a tutee.
b. An impactful work experience: If you’ve held a job that illustrates real-world experience, commitment, and service, this essay is a good opportunity to present your sense of purpose in the job, the real-world life skills the job has enabled you to develop, and any potential connection to your career aspirations. Try to think of the ways your work experience has shaped your life, whether through exposure to different environments or social scenes, through development of stronger collaboration or time management skills, or through a greater sense of financial responsibility. For example, a job bagging groceries at the local store might have taught you customer service skills, a sense of personal responsibility, and discipline and drive in the face of monotonous work. Convey the life lessons you learned through your job, the obstacles you overcame, and the relevance to your future ambitions.
- Staying Focused – Remember to keep the focus on this singular activity/experience; don’t write about multiple topics! This essay is your chance to delve more deeply in illustrating something truly meaningful to you, and you wouldn’t want it to turn into a replication of your Common App activities list.
- Be Unique – Among the thousands of essays about being president of National Honor Society, or captain of the track team, you want to present an essay that will stand out in the crowd. If you happen to have a passion for a more unique activity/experience, this is a great opportunity to let your more quirky side shine. A well-written essay on a more unusual topic is one way to capture an admissions reader’s attention. However, if your interests happen to align better with more common extracurriculars or work experiences, don’t worry; you just have to be sure to present it from a unique perspective through personal anecdotes.
We hope our breakdown of the prompt has helped clarify your ideas on how to answer the prompt, and we wish you the best of luck with your application to Clark University!
Looking for further help in the college application process? Check out our database of the 2017-2018 essay prompts for the top 100 colleges and our free guide to approaching each prompt.
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