University of wisconsin madison application essay

The harmonica player who plays with a blues band in the annual campus "Battle of The Bands" is contributing.

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The former lead in the school play who minors in drama and acts in the productions is contributing. The daughter of migrant farm workers who's now the first in her family to go to college, who plays club ultimate frisbee, works part time, and regularly visits her professors during office hours is contributing.

How to Ace Your University of Wisconsin Personal Statements

The common trait all of these students have are that they are in some way sharing their talent, background, belief or circumstance with other students and faculty. It might be a major leadership role on campus or might be simply teaching other students how to play the harmonica. But they're not just keeping to themselves. They're finding their place within the campus community. The only way to answer a question like this is to think about the person you want to be in college, and connect that with stories from your high school life that illustrate those traits, circumstances, beliefs, etc.

If you were going to add an example of yourself to the list above, what would the example be in other words, how do you see yourself contributing in college? Tie that example to your high school life and share some specific, descriptive stories that show that experience, belief or trait. You have to show the college something about who you are today, and then look ahead to how you'll bring that with you to college.

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A lot of students struggle with this question because they just don't know what to say. It's not uncommon, as it's often the broader prompts like this one that are harder for students to answer. But remember that essays are a vehicle for the admissions committee to get to know you better in ways your application doesn't reveal.

Have you experienced a legitimate hardship in high school, something that really did affect your performance? Just remember not to present something as a hardship unless, in fact, it was. Is there a story about your family or your life that you think is important for an admissions committee to know, something that might have impacted your high school career, and most importantly, something that's not apparent from the rest of your application? Maybe you're the first in your family to attend college, or you've grown up not knowing your father, or were an army brat who's attended four different high schools, or you had a brain tumor during your sophomore year and had to miss two months of school?

University of Wisconsin-Madison Supplemental Essay Prompt Guide

Have you had an experience that you think will impact your college career, particularly academically? For example, did your chemistry teacher inspire you to major in chemistry, or did your work on the newspaper make you want to study journalism, or your summer job at a law firm make you consider law?


Snowboarding is just the start, for me and for the UWM curriculum. I intend to explore my interest in Chemical Engineering at your university, which is home to an Engineering World Health EWH chapter, an organization open to any science or engineering student who wants to improve the global status of human health. EWH presents an opportunity to put theory into action by allowing its members to travel to places in need of help.

Given my interest in engineering, I value the opportunity to explore this breadth of moral values and to familiarize myself with the development needs of different countries.

Hopefully, I will cultivate my global perspective in the process. In addition, UW-Madison provides students with a variety of academic exchange opportunities at top universities around the world. I am particularly interested in the Chemical Engineering exchange program at the University of Leeds. Not only does it present an optimal learning environment, as there would be no language barrier, but it would also allow me to fulfil certain engineering requirements while exposing me to a different culture.

As for campus life, the Amateur Chamber Players draws my attention. Having played the accordion for over 13 years, I would love to join in as an accordionist, and if possible, take the chance to learn a new instrument. Being one of the few international students at my high school, I lack opportunities to share my perspective and customs. I would be thrilled to spend the next four years at your university—snowboarding, traveling the globe, and making the next four years a true adventure.

Remember: This is just a sample from a fellow student.

Application Essays

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