yale admissions

THE BEST ESSAY ADVICE YOU WILL EVER GET

Yo peeps, so as you can probably tell, I’m about to blow your mind. You might want to sit down, grab some water, you know, keep yourself hydrated. Maybe do a few stretches.

Now that you’re all ready, let’s begin! A girl who wrote about hotdogs and Costco got into Stanford and most Ivy League Schools, a student who wrote about his love for food got into Stanford, while Cornell’s admissions officer’s favorite essays were about lint and failing the driver’s test four times. Observing a pattern here? All these people chose kind of silly topics to write about. You might be wondering, “Yo,why would I want to sound stupid in front of the admissions officer, this doesn’t make sense!” . Well, that’s a valid argument. Now read this excerpt from one of the essays I mentioned above.

“While enjoying an obligatory hot dog, I did not find myself thinking about the ‘all beef’ goodness that Costco boasted. I instead considered finitudes and infinitudes, unimagined uses for tubs of sour cream, the projectile motion of said tub when launched from an eighty foot shelf or maybe when pushed from a speedy cart by a scrawny seventeen year old. I contemplated the philosophical: If there exists a thirty-­three ounce jar of Nutella, do we really have free will? I experienced a harsh physics lesson while observing a shopper who had no evident familiarity of inertia’s workings. With a cart filled to overflowing, she made her way towards the sloped exit, continuing to push and push while steadily losing control until the cart escaped her and went crashing into a concrete column, 52” plasma screen TV and all. Purchasing the yuletide hickory smoked ham inevitably led to a conversation between my father and me about Andrew Jackson’s controversiality"

Yes, yes, she’s literally talking about hot dogs and Costco. Now don’t underestimate her, this girl got accepted to 5 Ivy League Schools and Stanford. Jeez, that’s impressive. So now, you might be thinking , “Okay, enough of this, just get to the juicy part, give us the magic potion!” . Luckily enough for you, I’m getting to the point.

If you want to write an essay that slays everyone else’s like Beyoncé, first you gotta be true to yourself. You’re 17 or 18, you don’t want to end poverty or save the world. Maybe you enjoy pepperoni pizza, maybe you love watching horror films, maybe you love shopping at Macy’s, whatever it is, write about it.

The key is to choose a seemingly silly topic and present it in an intellectual light. Your ability to turn something silly into something genius will impress them and make you more memorable. In order to do that, you need to have a lot of knowledge about the topic you chose, which is why you need to be true to yourself. But then again, don’t write a pointless essay, don’t tell the officers that you can stuff 20 cheese balls in your mouth. Although I think it’s impressive, the admissions officer will beg to differ.

So there’s the secret formula to write a winning essay. Best of luck and I hope you get into your dream school!

Diyanshu Emandi

College Log, Entry IV

the 0.57%

A few days ago, a man said to me: “You guys are in the Ivy League. You’ve got it made. How many college students get to say that? 1%? Less than 1%? You guys are fortunate.”

I did a little casual research. Just typed in a few requests to Google and came up with some rough figures:

There are approximately 20 million postsecondary students studying in the United States, both full and part time. Of those, about 114,000 attend one of eight Ivy League institutions (Princeton, Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, U Penn, Columbia, Cornell, Brown). 114,000/20,000,000 = 0.57%. So, there really aren’t that many of us in the grand scheme of things. But does that make us special?

I don’t think so. Not objectively. But being an egotistical human, I certainly like to think so, and I’m sure I’m not alone. Not a day goes by that I don’t contemplate how fortunate I am. There were 20,000 applicants to the Dartmouth Class of 2019. I was one of about 2,000 offered admission. Out of ten applicants, I was the one selected. How’s that for an ego-booster?

I pray to God every day that I make the most of this opportunity, but in the meantime, I want to find something to say to those who put a little too much stock in numbers (especially those beginning the college application process - hats off to you). Here’s what I’ve got from my own personal experience: I applied to Williams College (of Massachusetts), a school with an acceptance rate of about 17%, and was waitlisted… and yet Dartmouth has an acceptance rate of 10%. One thing I draw from this is an impression I’ve come to firmly abide by in regards to the college admissions process: in addition to finding good students, schools are also looking to build a class with all the right components. That means a certain amount of each “type” of student. I’m not talking affirmative action, I’m talking the whole package. Admissions staff want to build classes with a wide variety of worldviews, talents, all sorts of traits: atheist, Muslim, Christian, math-and-science orientated, bilingual, trilingual, history buffs, musicians, athletes, bookworms… the list is eternal.

My closing advice in this brief little rant is this: if your goal is to get into a good school, apply to lots of them. Odds are, one of them will be looking for you.

Everyone has the potential to be special, and don’t let a rejection letter define you. Especially one from an Ivy, because we’re all uncool snobs anyhow :P

One year ago...

All of the REA applicants are going to be finding out their decisions on Monday, and I do not envy their anxiety one bit. It’s so hard to believe that I found out about my Yale acceptance one year ago today. I can just remember the feeling of doubt and preconceived failure, but miracles happen!

In short, Yale is sexy as hell and everyone accepted should matriculate. That is all.

Strange Paradise

A/N: I took this down last year when I thought I was going to expand it to use for my DCBB. Then I learned I should never ever ever sign up for a DCBB ever again and am now just getting around to putting it back. Anyway. It was written for a challenge I created called the iTunes fic challenge (which consists of opening your iTunes, putting your songs on shuffle, and writing a fic based off of the first song that starts playing.) 

My song was Strange Paradise by Beach House. Here is the fic:

Grey waves roll in from the ocean, crashing against the shore and frothing at their toes. It’s getting too dark to see little more than what’s right in front of them, but the familiar sounds of the water paint a vivid enough picture on their own. 

“Next year, I’m gonna move out here. Maybe get a job at the crab shack, spend all my money on beer, learn how to surf…” Dean hurls a pebble out into the current and scrunches his toes in the sand. It’s cool beneath his skin, grounding and familiar in a way few things are in life. He loves this beach. 

“That’s hardly reasonable, Dean.” Cas’ voice is deep and rumbling next to him, and Dean flashes him a smile. It’s unlikely to be seen in the dark, but still just as cheeky. Cas quirks a smile back, shaking his head.

“C’mon,” Dean says, bumping Cas’ shoulder with his own, a quick press of cotton against cotton that sends warmth curling in Dean’s chest. “It could be fun. You and me out here, no one breathing down our necks all the time? You could fill as many sketchbooks as you wanted…” 

Cas rests a chin on his knee, his eyes trained on the inky dark horizon, and Dean knows what he’s thinking. What about school?

The thing is, he and Castiel may be best friends - have been since they met on this very beach at 10 years old - but the two of them couldn’t be more different. 

Dean lives for the possibility the open road offers him, always feeling jittery if he’s in one place for too long. At seventeen there’s not really much he can do about that, stuck in school and still living under his parent’s rule, but he’s practically chomping at the bit for the day he graduates and leaves his small town in the dust. 

Cas on the other hand is more thoughtful about his life. He wants to attend school, get a proper education, be successful. Dean’s not sure how much of that is Cas, and how much of it is his upbringing, but the guy’s an amazing artist and if the amount of passion he pours into that is anything to go by, that’s what he truly loves. 

His talent would go to waste if he were holed up in an office somewhere, working an 8 to 5.

“Hey,” Dean says, his voice pitching low. Castiel fixes his endless gaze on Dean and for a beat it feels like he’s being swallowed up by the ocean, drowning in the swirl of emotion behind Castiel’s eyes. Even in the waning light he can see how bottomless those eyes are.

He wants to say it, the thing that’s been weighing on his mind for over two years now, I want to be with you, always. But the words are like molasses on his tongue, thick and slothful. He could try and spit them out, but he fears the mess he’d make.

Instead he says, “At least think about it? For me?”

Moonlight pours over Cas’ face, a beam of silver casting an otherworldly glow over his features. He scoots closer to Dean, hip to warm hip, and rests his head on Dean’s shoulder. “I do love it here.” He murmurs. 

It isn’t a blatant yes, but Dean can hear the agreement in the words unspoken.

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The real surprise of s4 is gunna be me getting into grad school. John and Sherlock will kiss and then Sherlock will turn to the camera and say, “and congratulations, Ben mysticben, on your admission to Yale…”