Being our authentic selves often requires courage. And, for college applicants who will write their autobiography many times over in their college essays this fall, knowing themselves can be a tall order, but a challenge that can and must be overcome.
In order to qualify for college admissions, students have to satisfy a standard set of criteria, met, often with great effort over the greater part of their youth and so naturally become one of a herd, whose other members are now also competing to achieve the same goal.
Yet, now, at the time of application, students are being asked to distinguish themselves from the pack. Well, you can see the complexity involved in trying to swim against the current of the river of their experience. Therefore, college applicants face a complex self-reflection process to differentiate themselves from other applicants in 650 words or less.
Thus, the best advice is to be gentle, and remember the essay won’t be written in a one-time flurry of perfect brilliance.
And keep E.E. Cummings words close:
It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.
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