How to Write the Kansas State University Essay 2019-2020

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Kansas State University is a public research university ranked #162 in the U.S. News National Universities list. A 2019 study by SmartAsset found that K-State graduates have the highest starting salary in the state. The school offers over 250 majors, minors, secondary majors, and programs. It also has an Open Option program where students can work directly with advisors to explore majors in a flexible, academically safe manner. 

 

Kansas State has an acceptance rate of 94.6% meaning it is not too selective. The main application does not have any supplemental essays, but the Honors Program does require an extra essay. If you want to become a future wildcat and are interested in the University Honors Program, read on to learn how to write a standout essay.

 

For Honors Program Applicants

 

Please describe in approximately 300-500 words that which motivates your application to the University Honors Program.

The KSU Honors Program offers high-achieving students extra resources such as honors classes, priority course enrollment, a living-learning community, and a mentorship program with honors upperclassmen. All students are required to complete a capstone project. 

 

This essay prompt asks you to delve beyond your interest in Kansas State University and specifically recount what draws you to its University Honors Program. To do this, you must do some research into the school and the program’s specific offerings, beyond those we just listed (you can mention some of those, but your reasons should be even more personal). The program’s website is a great place to start.

 

Rather than answering a prompt, think of yourself as crafting a narrative that explains by showing, not telling, how the Honors Program fits into your existing lifestyle and would help you achieve your goals. To write an engaging and thoughtful response to this prompt, be sure to include the following three factors – vivid imagery, specific details, your personal experience. Take the time to concisely lay out scenes for readers so that they can imagine it in their minds. Here is a good and bad example of a portion of a potential response:

 

Good: “I am particularly looking forward to bridging my varied interests via interdisciplinary means. Through KSU’s Honors Program, I plan to enroll in classes like Literature and the Environment, where I can think critically about how the fictional world within a novel’s pages can influence people’s psyche. The course material would complement my work at my local library, where I founded a sustainability initiative based on the plots of my favorite novels.”

 

Bad: “At KSU, I plan to use the honors curriculum to further explore my passion for the environment. I can expand on course material via instructor-led research, or apply it to my existing interests. I look forward to using coursework to further my interdisciplinary passions.”

 

The former response engages readers and provides specific, vivid imagery mixed with a personal element. In the first response, readers can more clearly picture how you plan to pursue your passion for environment and literature rather than you merely stating the abstract concepts. The latter lacks this quality and is generic and impersonal in nature. 

 

The first example is also superior to the second in that it incorporates specific details that show you have done your research. Mentioning the available resources is good, but only if you can back up your claims with specific hypotheticals. You should go beyond stating the available resources and explain how you plan to use them to further specific goals.

 

Finally, the personal element demonstrates your interest in the school is stemming from your personal interests and adds a dimension of authenticity to your response. To amplify this quality, you can incorporate elements of past experience – what sustainable measures have you implemented? How has your favorite literature influenced your psyche and real-life actions? Did you do a research report on literature and the environment in high school? Tie your response back to yourself in order to provide a more complete picture of who you are as a person. This will humanize you to admissions officers and allow your personality to transcend your application.

 

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