What to Include In the Introduction of Your Application Essay


When you are writing your application essay, you are allotted a certain amount of words and cannot waste a single one. You need to jump in quickly when you start the essay. You do not have the luxury of slowly strolling down memory lane when writing your application essay. You need to make sure the paper does not have un-necessary adverbs, adjectives, or flowery details. You job is to sell yourself to the organization you are applying to without sounding like you are bragging.


The Introduction, Please

In the introduction give the basics about yourself, but be careful not to sound like a list. The admissions personnel should know what your strengths, goals, and story is after the introduction. An overview will give these facts, and then in the body of the paper, you will support the revelation with your story.


Use the Triangle Tool

Pretend you are a newspaper reporter. Reporters are taught to give the who, what, where, when, and why in the first paragraph. If is done correctly, you can actually draw a triangle and those components will fall within the drawing.


How to Start

Write out the long version of your essay. You can free write if you wish. Then take a red pen and begin to remove every wasted and unnecessary word. Keep the question or the prompt in your mind. Never trim a detail that is integral to the answer. Then put your essay away for a few days.


Who Are You

After a few days, go back to your essay and ask yourself if you are revealed in this essay. The readers want to know who you are, why they should pick you, and how you can contribute to them. It is okay to retell an event in which you made a mistake as long as there is a portion of the essay that shows you made a wise choice because of the incident. Never use sentences that start with the words, “I am”, “I was”, “I can”, and “I did”…keep your voice active. Do not tell who you are show, who you are through a story.


Did You Know

Were you aware that if you have not grabbed the reader’s attention after the first paragraph, he or she might not read any further? Grab the reader’s attention with a hook, and then follow it with your triangle. You can do it!